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The Schizophrenic Programmer Who Built an OS To Talk To God

enter to exit There's a Fine Line.. (417 comments)

This is a small interview he did (regarding his setup): http://terry.davis.usesthis.co...

He's been banned over at hackernews, reddit and a few places for posting the messages of God which he divines from an index of phrases and a PRNG. His revelations are often liberally intertwined with racist comments and violent swearing.

He's posed a slight dilemma for a few communities, as no one seems to know how exactly to react to his situation.

Here are a list of his demands in order to make god happy: http://www.templeos.org/Wb/Doc... . These include MS killing SecureBoot and VMware implementing PC speaker beeps.

yesterday
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Mozilla's 2013 Report: Revenue Up 1% To $314M; 90% From Google

enter to exit Re:How's this going to work (161 comments)

A search engine doesn't actually guarantee any revenue for Mozilla. They get a cut of the Advertising revenue initiated by a Firefox search (or similar). Firefox needs users to generate the searches. A search engine would pay Mozilla in proportion to the amount of eyeballs it gives them.

Firefox would be foolish to change the default search to yahoo, as a large proportion would change it back to Google - but not all. They would effectively be dividing the profitability of their user base. The sort of people who use yahoo don't care what search engine they use but plenty of people insist of using Google and will change it back.

Google isn't simply giving money away to Firefox, they do derive some benefit from FF referrals, but how much? I suspect Google's past relationship with Firefox was largely a way for them to mitigate against challenges IE could pose if MS fiddled with it. They might have thought it necessary to be generous to Mozilla, as a long term strategy, but they have their own very popular browser now.

Has Yahoo offered Mozilla significantly better terms? Did Google simply decline to renew (or renew on good terms)? Is this all a negotiation tactic? Has Mozilla lost the plot? It'll all be clear soon.

4 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: Workaday Software For BSD On the Desktop?

enter to exit Dive Into FreeBSD (267 comments)

I've done this myself as an experiment a few weeks ago. With the exception of FTB (the site has a jar file for it, so it'll likely work) everything you mentioned is available in ports. http://www.freshports.org/

There's also a binary packing system (pkg) but packages seem to randomly go missing there. A couple of weeks ago it was Xorg, until yesterday no Firefox. BTW can anyone explain the dynamics behind that?

The best way to get in is head first, install it on the least fancy PC you have. I'd strongly recommend FreeBSD and the handbook (This should be your first place of reference). http://www.freebsd.org/handboo... (take note of chapter 11). If you're a gentoo man you don't need PC-BSD.

Putting my view on *nix desktops aside (Are they worth the effort?), If there is a show stopper it'll probably be hardware support.

5 days ago
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Firefox Signs Five-Year Deal With Yahoo, Drops Google as Default Search Engine

enter to exit Google Should Offer More Money (395 comments)

Why would Google want to crush Firefox? What motive does it have?

Firefox is an open-source browser that poses zero threat to any of Google's businesses. It can't be used in the same way IE was to limit competition. There will always be some people who aren't using Chrome. If they can't have everyone using Chrome, the next best thing is putting Google on as many browsers as possible. Chrome is all about making it easier for people to use their services, the browser itself is not that important.

A good chunk of Firefox user are people who've had it installed for them before Chrome existed and have just stuck with it. These are the kinds of people who would use the Firefox default search without noticing a change. Firefox still has ~20% market share, it might make a difference.

about a week ago
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Mozilla Updates Firefox With Forget Button, DuckDuckGo Search, and Ads

enter to exit The Ads Can Be Disabled (327 comments)

The Advertisements may be disabled in the preferences. They're trying to diversify their revenue which currently is mostly Google. Over the last few releases they've been highlighting the various privacy features and ideology Firefox has in a bid to differentiate themselves against Chrome, so it' a little Ironic to see this Ad compromise.

The Ads only occupy unused thumbnail tiles i believe..so it's not obtrusive. As long as us techies can turn it off, I'm happy. Everyone else will hardly notice, and it'll pay the Mozilla devs.

about two weeks ago
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Australian Post Office Opens Mail Forwarding Warehouse In the USA

enter to exit It's Not Always About Tax (142 comments)

The US market is big enough that a lot of US businesses simply don't bother offering to ship anywhere else. The potential of having to deal with foreign customers/regulations is often not worth it, regardless of how simple the procedures are.

about three weeks ago
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Mark Zuckerberg Speaks Mandarin At Tsinghua University In Beijing

enter to exit To speak Chinese is not to know China (217 comments)

The former PM of Australian Kevin Rudd could also speak Mandarin. During one diplomatic spat, the Chinese embassy reminded him that:

"To speak Chinese is not to know China. Many examples can be found of people who speak Mandarin to a high level but who do not understand how China works. They may have learned their Chinese shut up in their study reading the Analects."

I think the Chinese regard this as an irreverent amusement more than anything meaningful

about a month ago
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Debian's Systemd Adoption Inspires Threat of Fork

enter to exit Re:I Trust Debain (555 comments)

I have no interest in trading barbs with you. I don't care enough.

You're wrong to suggest i don't have technical skill. I've done a fair bit of C programming against the Linux API. It might not be the bash scripting that you get excited about, but it's something.

Perhaps you've inadvertently stumbled on an interesting point though, could it perhaps be that what worries you most is the erosion of your exclusive club of arcane knowledge? I'd suggest to you that arcana is not a necessary component of technology.

I'd like to note also, that you haven't addressed my underlying point that technical committees of multiple distros have adopted systemd.

about a month ago
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Debian's Systemd Adoption Inspires Threat of Fork

enter to exit I Trust Debain (555 comments)

I trust the Debian committee - as a collective - to make the best choice. The committee has a large group of people with diverse interests and the majority voted to adopt systemd. Debian isn't exactly known to be a flippant Distro.

I suspect the technical people behind Debian/Fedora/Arch/OpenSuSE and other Distributions (some of which make money on their products and services) are a lot smarter and thoughtful than a bunch of people with a website that has a purple background and orange links.

I've used systemd under Arch, and i could open up a systemd unit file and understand what every word in the file meant. I can't say the same thing about most SysV startup script.

about a month ago
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Amazon Web Services To Build Two New Aussie Data Centers

enter to exit A Local Store For Local People. (27 comments)

I drive past the location they're going to build the data centers every day. It's mainly decrepit farms and grasslands. It's a common place for grass fires

How many people do these things usually employ?

about a month and a half ago
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Firefox 33 Arrives With OpenH264 Support

enter to exit Two Browsers, Two Goals. (114 comments)

Chrome is a good competitor to Firefox, it might be winning on various fronts at the moment but it's still a browser owned and controlled by a corporation with only profits in mind. Google made chrome to make it easier for them to track you and push their services on you.

Every time I've used Chrome, it's constantly nagged me to sign in to Google services, asks to change what mailto: does and in recent versions (on Windows) they've included a notification icon that ties in with Google Now. I feel Chrome gets a free pass on a lot of this stuff because it's considered fast. A lot of that perception is in UI responsiveness as the millisecond rendering differences are practically indistinguishable. Firefox should really consider moving away from XUL.

Firefox is a run by Mozilla (an NFP) who can only justify it's existence by making a good browser. Firefox needs to improve on a few fronts, but it's still a browser for the people. The only incentive they have is survival (which mean people using Firefox). The Mozilla Foundation has clearly become overly bureaucratic and focused on the survival of it's own bureaucracy to the detriment of their software. It needs a good shakedown. There are too many people looking for things to do - go to mozilla.org and check out the half-dead list of projects and 1000+ employees.

about a month and a half ago
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Raspberry Pi Sales Approach 4 Million

enter to exit Project Goals (146 comments)

I'd like to see an RTC and a power switch/button on the next RPi.

I'm not sure the project goals of giving kids "hands-on, low-level interaction with computing devices" have been met. Linux is just too powerful/complex an OS to offer that to kids. You can use python modules to program the GPIO pins, but as soon as you do that you're getting into electronics and might as well use one of the Arduinos (which have a lot less abstraction).

It's a nice form factor at a nice price, and i have a few (doing various things) but they're not kid friendly any more than a PC is.

about a month and a half ago
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Glut of Postdoc Researchers Stirs Quiet Crisis In Science

enter to exit No Incentive To Change (283 comments)

There needs to be a financial weight that relates to the employment prospects of a university's graduates.

If a faculty produces too many graduates that are unemployed years after graduating, the university should suffer a financial loss. Perhaps less student funding for a particular course or less government grants.This will incentivise them to make modifications to a program or cut intake.

Of course, this is a complicated area, but currently it makes no difference to a University if they produce masses of unemployed/unemployable people.

about a month and a half ago
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Test-Driving a $35 Firefox OS Smartphone

enter to exit Condescending (132 comments)

In a couple of years, you're going to be able to buy hardware with x4 the specs of what this phone has for less than $50.00 and it'll be able to run an older version of android decently. If you look at China it's starting to happen now although not yet in bulk supply.

"It's good enough for poor people" is very condensing. Just because they have no money, it doesn't mean they'll be happy to use an unusable phone. They're better off with a feature phone until hardware prices drop.

about a month and a half ago
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Possible Reason Behind Version Hop to Windows 10: Compatibility

enter to exit Product Name != Version Number (349 comments)

Considering windows 95 and 98 would return an version number of 9, there is no reason that Windows 9 couldn't have returned a totally different number, say 10.

I bet it they went with 10 only as a symbolic leap from 8/8.1.

about 2 months ago
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GNOME 3.14 Released

enter to exit Useless Elements and Padding. (250 comments)

There's still an inordinate amount of padding on everything. It maks my screen feel like 800x600.

On top of that, gnome have an activity bar and each application a window decoration bar and then a menu bar. When running a maximized program, the bars are placed directly under each other and good chunk of the upper screen is wasted.

The activity bar still does nothing and the window decoration bar typically has a single close button. It's a gigantic waste of space.

about 2 months ago
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Why a Chinese Company Is the Biggest IPO Ever In the US

enter to exit Aliexpress (191 comments)

I've used aliexpress.com (the consumer site for alibaba). It's incredibly scammy.

The prices are not that different to those offered by ebay sellers (usually the same). Ebay accepts Paypal, Aliexpress doesn't. Although they have an ill reputed escrow service.

Aliexpress selers have a lot of things you can't buy on ebay. It's great for buying knockoffs. I used it to be Gameboy and NES clone.

It's very popular with women, who use it to buy cosmetics at very low prices (probably fake brands).

about 2 months ago
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What To Expect With Windows 9

enter to exit Ugh Metro. (545 comments)

Metro Apps aren't particularly good or useful. They haven't seen mass usage by the Market or Developers, why keep it around on the desktop? It's a design clearly meant for touch interfaces. The design insist on hiding things in a submenu of a hidden side-menu - all that's visibly left is padding.

There might have been a reason for it a couple of years ago, when the world thought all laptops were going to have a touch screen but that's clearly not going to happen. The use cases are thin - and they're just plain uncomfortable to use. What the world really needed was better trackpads.

MS should remove Metro from the desktop and license WP8.1 for tablets.

about 2 months ago
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Quickflix Wants Netflix To Drop Australian VPN Users

enter to exit Netflix might try..but not to help quickflix. (172 comments)

When Netflix eventually deems fit to grace us with it's presence, it's offerings are going to be nowhere near the same as the US version. It's doubtful if it'll be the same price as well. They might crack down on VPN users to force them to move to the Australian version.

Netflix could play cat-and-mouse and block known VPN IPs until customers simply give up (and probably torrent the shows they want).

Most Aussies use the same couple of VPN services, they could easily fatigue the vast majority of illegitimate Aussie Netflix subscribers.

It takes minimal effort for netflix to do this, but they have no reason to until they launch in Australia.

about 2 months ago

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