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Misogyny, Entitlement, and Nerds

freeweed Re:#notallgeekyguys (1198 comments)

Why does every single discussion about women in tech immediately result in a bunch of denials, followed by pats on the back (upvotes) as dudes congratulate other dudes on how much of a not-problem there is?

Your post could have closed out the thread. Because that's exactly what it turned into (unsurprisingly).

about 5 months ago
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Misogyny, Entitlement, and Nerds

freeweed Re:So, to sum this up. (1198 comments)

Thank you for this. I started to read his reply which was even more off-the-wall, so I couldn't finish. But I'll add to your sentiment.

From one male nerd to the rest, who think this way: talk to women. Seriously, talk to them sometime. It will blow your mind just how little you understand about what it's like to be female.

And another thing:

You know how every guy dates some girl he thinks is hot, but it turns out she's pathetic/manipulative/whiny/needy/annoying/whatever? And later, you regret it and think "man, what the hell was I thinking?". I've never met a man who doesn't have at least one regretted relationship, unless they really don't date very much. When guys do this, they have a "man I used to date this stupid bitch" story.

When girls do this, they get raped.

I'm not quite sure why this is so difficult to understand.

about 5 months ago
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Wal-Mart Sues Visa For $5 Billion For Rigging Card Swipe Fees

freeweed Canadians: please read (455 comments)

Little travel tip that I, as a Canadian, learned years ago entirely by chance.

If you encounter this security system in the US (still mostly as gas pumps) - 99.5% of pumps will allow Canadians to use a "zip code". Take the first 3 numeric digits in your Postal Code, and add "00" to the end, making a 5 digit "zip code". Works like a charm almost every time. I've only had it fail once. And they do actually use this as a security code, I've tried 55555 and 90210 and nothing else will work. But this one does.

I'm stunned that this little tidbit isn't all over the Canadian news, considering how many of us travel to the US (especially in our cars!).

about 7 months ago
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Canada Post Announces the End of Urban Home Delivery

freeweed Re:This kills on-line businesses (226 comments)

This is only the US version. Canada Post's "super mail" boxes only require one key. You use it, and return it to the outgoing mail slot.

about 10 months ago
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Critics Reassess Starship Troopers As a Misunderstood Masterpiece

freeweed Re:It tried to follow the plot (726 comments)

I know many people who still act as if they don't have Internet.

Shows like Spartacus and Game of Thrones are their only boob intake. And they will proudly tell you they will watch them almost solely for the boobs. And spend hours discussing how great the boobs are, if you give them a chance.

Looking this sort of thing up on the Internet apparently will offend the wife, or their inner sensibilities, or something. But seeing it on HBO is just a-OK.

We still live in an eerily puritanical society.

about a year ago
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Saudi Justice: 10 Years and 2,000 Lashes For Internet Video of Naked Dancing

freeweed Re:Stop Dismissing this with False Equivalencies (537 comments)

Don't take this the wrong way, but you're not really making Pakistan look any better. You're picking semantic nits that quite frankly make Pakistan look just as bad - to anyone who has any respect for a woman as an equal.

I'll faux-Godwin the thread and point out that you might as well have said "pf, we're not as bad as Nazi Germany, our gas chambers killed our Jews in a far more humane manner". We didn't make them suffer that badly, stop lumping us in with those nasty Germans!

1 year,11 days
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Intel's Pentium Chip Turns 20 Today

freeweed Re:Was the Pentium really that much faster than? (197 comments)

Your 486DX4-100 was most certainly faster than a Pentium 66, and on par with a 75 if not a bit better. At least for the vast majority of software out at the time. My DX4 lasted me well into 1997, but by that point the affordable Pentiums were into the 200Mhz+ range and MMX was all the rage, so it became a more obvious upgrade.

The only people who ever ran 66s and 75s when they were current were those with money to burn.

Man, I miss how simple things were back then. When clockspeed actually meant something, and there was a pretty linear relationship between it and performance. I haven't cared about CPU performance in nearly a decade. I just get whatever $100 gets me, and I'm ALWAYS I/O- or (less these days) RAM-bound.

about a year and a half ago
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How Many Text Messages Do You Send a Day?

freeweed Re:Age Gap (217 comments)

Or, smart enough to realize that almost anything that can be said in 160 characters or less, really isn't worth saying at all.

"Hey, do you wanna to go camping this weekend?"

"Shit, I'm gonna be a few minutes late for our meeting"

Or even something as simple as "Happy Birthday!".

Yeah, I can't possibly think of any use for a communication medium that is terse.

I swear, I'm as much of an old grumpy fuck as the next Slashdotter - but even I recognize something that's ubiquitous, simple, and damned handy. Email is more involved, calling has its own issues (not everyone is free to engage in a call every second of the day), IM is nowhere near standardized...

Gimme SMS text for making plans with people or blasting off quick info, thanks. It's one of the best technologies invented in terms of "it just works". Well, presuming most people have cellphones (insert a bunch of comments below about how you don't own a TV either, and we may have another Onion article on our hands).

Contrary to what some kids seem to think these days, SMS texting is not Twitter. I'm not sending "I'm taking a dump!" to my friends through SMS (although perhaps I should...).

about a year and a half ago
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America's Real Criminal Element: Lead

freeweed Re:Roman Empire (627 comments)

Don't worry, it was a pun and funny.

The poster clearly thought they had a chance to explain your ignorance, but the joke's on them - they didn't realize you actually knew what you were talking about (which was obvious to anyone who "got" the joke).

about 2 years ago
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Newspaper That Published Gun-Owners List Hires Armed Guards

freeweed Re:Mommy... (1435 comments)

While I realize your username long predates the US government department of the same name, I found a bit of dark humour in the fact that this post came from someone named "TSA".

about 2 years ago
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USMA: Going the Extra Kilometer For Metrication

freeweed Re:Boggle (909 comments)

Q: What size of quiche are you making that you're using ingredients measured in GALLONS???

A: An American one.

about 2 years ago
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Disney to Acquire Lucasfilm, Star Wars Episode 7 Due In 2015

freeweed Re:The original were mediocre children's movies (816 comments)

Hate to break it to you, but they made children's movies long before Star Wars. And very few were remembered 35 years later. You may not personally like them, but they were a hell of a lot more than just "mediocre children's movies", for several generations.

Hell, my 30-something parents (at the time) absolutely loved them and saw them several times in the original theatrical run. While that may be no big deal today, with adults regularly going to "children's" movies - 30 years ago it was COMPLETELY UNHEARD OF.

The originals completely defined the movie-going experience in ways we still don't fully understand. Damn near every movie made since then owes something to Star Wars - whether it's in merchandising, blockbusting, hype, promotion, special effects, genre-openness, sequel anticipation, or just plain cool factor.

about 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Distros Have You Used, In What Order?

freeweed I'm a bit weird, based on these comments (867 comments)

Well like most people, I messed around with a ton of distros at first. Slack, Gentoo (ugh), Debian, Suse, Mandrake, probably more that I don't remember.

Once I went "full on Linux" on my desktop in 2003: Red hat -> Knoppix -> Ubuntu -> Kubuntu (within a few days). And I've been there ever since. I've always kept a laptop running Windows handy (XP, Vista (yes, Vista) and now 7) for those one-offs that just have problems in Linux. Which are extremely few and far between these past few years.

I'm weird in that I know virtually no one who used Knoppix (3.0/4.0 days) as a primary desktop distro for any length of time. Personally, I found that at the time it had one of the best h/w detection routines, it installed fairly cleanly, and it was just overall a nice distro to work with. I used it exclusively for several years. I really only moved off once *ubuntu took off as a valid alternative.

about 2 years ago
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TomTom Satnavs To Set Insurance Prices

freeweed Re:Competition ahoy! (605 comments)

Perfectly predictable insurance means that you end up paying exactly the cost of the damage you cause. Or in other words, exactly what would happen in a world without insurance (which incidentally is precisely what happens in situations where a "really bad driver" cannot afford any insurance at all - they go without).

Insurance, by definition and design, is about SPREADING risk. Not charging people exactly based on their risk. Most people seem to have a hard time grasping that. I'm not sure these devices are such a great idea - if we're just going to charge people commensurate with the damages they may cause, what's the point of insurance in the first place? Just send them the bill for repairs/medical bills and that's their new premium.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Can You Do About SOPA and PIPA?

freeweed Re:Spread the word (1002 comments)

Wikipedia's FAQ talks about disabling Javascript, etc. I just found it easier today to hit the "stop" button on my browser once the page is (mostly) loaded, but before the banner script kicks in. A few images may not fully load depending on my timing, but it's a trivial workaround.

What scares me is that I think I may have just broadcast a method of circumventing a protection system, if some bonehead media company decided to use something like this as a paywall. Combine the DMCA with SOPA/PIPA (I'm mostly thinking of the Canadian equivalents here) and I might be breaking the law by clicking "stop", and telling others to do it.

Sheer madness.

more than 2 years ago
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In the EU, Water Doesn't (Officially) Prevent Dehydration

freeweed Re:Once Again... (815 comments)

I'm always amazed that people think Soda is somehow a "better deal" for you, when it's simply bottled water with a ton of added sugar and colouring and (generally) artificial flavouring.

more than 2 years ago
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Is SaaS Killing Native Linux App Development?

freeweed Plenty of us use native apps (330 comments)

Native apps that I use in Linux every day:

Clementine (audio player)
Xine (video player)
Musicbrainz (mp3 tagger)
Google Earth
Pidgin (IM client)
Firefox
Geeqie (photo browsing/basic editor)
Minecraft (duh)
Open Office
Kate (text editor)
K3B (burning software)

And this is just the stuff I can think of off the top of my head while at work. On top of this, there are dozens upon dozens of other apps I use less frequently, but regularly. About the only web app I use that's replaced a native desktop app is Gmail.

I suspect you simply do a lot less "user" type stuff than most people. Pretty much none of this could be replaced with web apps, at least not yet. Maybe Google Docs/Picassa could take out one or two things, if I hosted everything I did on the web. Google's storage limits severely curtail that type of activity in my case.

Without native Linux apps, I'd be back to Windows in a second. Not by choice, but due to lack of it. Or maybe I'd buy a Mac.

more than 2 years ago
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Virginia Rometty Selected As Next CEO of IBM

freeweed Re:Schizophrenic America (131 comments)

It reminds me of that small number of feminists who seem to view sexual liberation not in terms of respect, mature dialogue, and winning their freedom from chauvanism, but merely as the freedom for women to be as sex-crazed and/or misandropic as some men are chauvanist and misogynistic.

Considering what women have had to deal with throughout history, and still continue to deal with today - this is a hell of a good start, if nothing else.

The respect and dialogue can come later. In my experience it won't come at least until men understand that women CAN be sex-crazed in the first place. I shit you not, I had a conversation with a cow-orker the other day about "wifely duties". In 2011. I felt like I had slipped back 70 years.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Long-Term Video/Picture Storage?

freeweed Kids today will grow up surrounded by themselves (499 comments)

It's interesting that this came up (again) right now. I've just spent the past week finally digitizing some old VHS home movies that turned up in my parent's basement. We just never got around to doing anything with them, and VHS players may become fairly rare in a few more years. I still haven't snagged a cheap Beta player so the movies from my earlier childhood are mostly locked away for now.

Back in the day, tapes weren't exactly cheap. Nor did many people own a video camera. So mostly what we have is a 2 hour tape of a single weekend, taken with a borrowed/rented camera. Then another tape from several years if not a decade later. The quality of the media, plus degradation over time, means some of it looks pretty awful. You can mostly make out who people are but it can be tricky. Etc. I've also started looking into scanning all of our printed photos, of which there are many more - everyone owned a camera in the 70s/80s - but still, maybe 5-10 pictures for any given event or day, and many things were simply never photographed because they didn't seem important at the time, or we ran out of film, or whatever.

And looking through all of this makes me realize how precious these relative few records of my past are. There's maybe 2 hours of video with me in it and a few hundred photographs, spread over decades with large chunks of time completely missing. So when I look at these things, it's remarkable. Some of it I haven't seen in years, some I've simply never seen. I'm at the perfect age where it's not completely unheard of to have video of one's self, but it certainly wasn't common nor made in quantity - so you take what you can get, and there's a sense of fascination with it.

I contrast that to kids growing up today. Damn near every single day of their lives will be recorded, in high quality audio, video, and images. By the thousands of hours and tens of thousands of pictures (hey, digital storage is CHEAP). They will continually be exposed to it, if my friends and family are any indication - some of them constantly re-watch videos of first birthdays, first walking, first vacation etc etc etc. For most of my life I've had to rely on memory alone, with a few pictures to remind me of what any given house looked like, or the yard, or my friends at the time, or what have you. This next generation will have it in their face at all times, and accessible throughout their lives.

Just got me philosophical, I guess. I'm completely fascinated that video of me even exists from when I was 10. My nephews right now have a hard time understanding why we don't have video of their dad through every single month of his life.

As for storage, I'm digitizing everything to whatever open and widely readable format works that has enough quality considering the source material, keeping it on hard disk (backed up to another), and sent out to several family locations on burnt DVDs. Within a few years the space will be almost trivial and I'll probably add a backup to my keychain. But my entire recorded life can be stored in a few gigabytes. Your kid's first week probably contains more. I think what I'm hinting at is that you might want to consider not keeping every single last video and photo if it becomes too much of a burden. If there's less around, it will become all the more precious and fun to look at in the future.

about 3 years ago

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