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Compared to my 1st computer's memory ...

fruity_pebbles Re:TI 99/4A to 8GB PC (587 comments)

My recollection is that the base model TI 99/4A had 16KB built in, but it was actually video memory. The CPU had none, or only a small amount (256 bytes sounds about right). To run software stored in the video memory the CPU had to continually make requests to the video chip to transfer data from the video memory.

The memory expansion modules that plugged into the side of the console connected to the CPU's memory bus. I heard that BASIC programs and other software ran a lot faster if you had a memory expansion module, because obviously the CPU could directly access that memory. I never had a memory expansion module so I don't know if that was true, but I do remember that BASIC programs ran noticeably slower on my TI 99/4A than on other computers I used at that time (TRS-80, Apple II, C-64).

about a year ago

Compared to my 1st computer's memory ...

fruity_pebbles TI 99/4A to 8GB PC (587 comments)

TI 99/4A had 16KB, for those of you who don't remember.

about a year ago

Is Google Voice Doomed To Be 2nd-Class Messaging System?

fruity_pebbles Remember Google Reader (172 comments)

Google killed off Google Reader because it "only" had about a million users. (Although based on the number of new Feedly users it's likely that the number was a lot higher than that.) Google Voice has about 3.5 million users, and while it has a lot of great features it also has a lot of limitations and quirks that have been there a while and there's no sign of Google addressing them. Now Google says that Hangouts is the future, but I suspect the transition is going to be akin to pulling the rug out from under Google Voice users, similar to the way that Google Reader users were "transitioned".

Full disclosure: I'm not a Google Voice user. I used to be a very satisfied Google Reader user.

about a year ago

Most precise measuring tool I've used ...

fruity_pebbles Grains (328 comments)

I have a gunpowder scale that measures to a precision of 0.1 grains. (0.1 grains == about 6.5 milligrams) As far as I can tell it's also accurate to within 0.1 grain, but I don't have an especially rigorous method for testing accuracy.

about a year ago

Smart Guns To Stop Mass Killings

fruity_pebbles Re:There are technical solutions... (1388 comments)

Important to note: ammo has a shelf life of a few years. Within a decade, culpability for gun crimes could be much more transparent.

Good quality ammo has a shelf life of a few decades, or more. I've personally fired commercial 9mm ammo that was 25+ years old; it worked just like brand new ammo.

about a year and a half ago

Color-Screen TI-84 Plus Calculator Leaked

fruity_pebbles Re:Casio fx 7000 (245 comments)

I still have my Casio FX-7000G in my desk drawer. IIRC I bought it around 1987 to replace my beloved TI-58C. I didn't find the graphing very useful, but other than that it was a fine scientific calculator. Eventually it got relegated to the desk drawer and replaced with an HP-32SII.

about 2 years ago

Google's Nexus 4, 7, 10 Strategy: Openness At All Costs

fruity_pebbles Re:Missed Opportunity (359 comments)

I believe they missed a big opportunity by not delivering a Verizon LTE capable phone in the $350-$450 range. There is a significant portion of users who are still grandfathered on to "unlimited" data that are approaching upgrade time (e.g., early adopters who bought VZW's first LTE phone, the HTC Thunderbolt back in Dec 2010). There's a large market of people that would choose an unsubsidized LTE Nexus 4 which lets them keep unlimited data for that price. The competitive subsidized phones (i.e. GS3 or Note 2) would only be about $200 or so less but would cost the user their unlimited data plan which a lot of people value more than $200.

The HTC Thunderbolt was released in March, 2011. However, your comment is still valid - a lot of people who bought a Thunderbolt then will become eligible for a phone upgrade in November, 2012. A Nexus 4 that runs on Verizon's LTE network would be an attractive alternative.

about 2 years ago

Google's Nexus 4, 7, 10 Strategy: Openness At All Costs

fruity_pebbles Too much sacrifice for openness (359 comments)

I'm all for openness, but I'm not going to buy an "open" phone that's starkly lacking in features. The Nexus One had the best hardware of any smartphone on the market when it was introduced. The Nexus S? Nice, but not spectacular. Galaxy Nexus? Nice, not spectacular, crappy camera. Nexus 4? No LTE - that's a deal breaker for a lot of people. Was the Nexus One a fluke, or has Google given up on trying to deliver a Nexus phone with great hardware?

about 2 years ago

If I could print 1 replacement organ ...

fruity_pebbles Brain for my son (544 comments)

A slightly modified brain for my autistic son. He's adorable as he is, but it would be nice to have a conversation with him.

If I had a coupon for a two-fer I'd also get an eye for me (blind in one eye since I was a kid).

about 2 years ago

Minnesota Supreme Court Rejects DUI Challenges Based On Buggy Software

fruity_pebbles Got me out of jury duty (391 comments)

I was #8 in the jury pool for a DUI case. They were empaneling 12 jurors so I was going to be on the jury unless the prosecution or the defense chose to strike me. During voire dire the prosecutor asked a general question along the lines of "how do you feel about DUI cases?" I raised my hand, explained that I was a computer programmer, and said that I was skeptical of the reliability of breathalyzers because of articles I had read in trade journals concerning buggy breathalyzer software. I was not picked to be on the jury.

more than 2 years ago

Setting the various household clocks ...

fruity_pebbles Re:strangely, without my intervention (344 comments)

I have about half a dozen "atomic" (actually WWVB) clocks. Most of them change correctly for DST. One or two of them change the hour correctly, but for some reason also adjust the minutes ahead by one. And they're ahead by exactly 60 seconds. In a day or two they figure it out and set themselves to the correct time.

more than 2 years ago

Amazon To Offer Kindle ebooks Via Public Libraries

fruity_pebbles Re:Mr Cynic here (126 comments)

Overdrive offers library e-books in several formats. All the books I browsed through at my library today were offered in Kindle, ePub, and PDF.

about 3 years ago

How Many Solar Powered Devices Do You Own?

fruity_pebbles Watch (334 comments)

My Casio G-Shock Waveceptor is low maintenance: Solar powered; no batteries to wear out. Set time by WWVB; no manual adjustments needed for DST, and no worries about the watch running fast or slow.

I answered 0-1, but I do have a second solar powered device: a Casio scientific calculator. The calculator still works great, but I haven't used it in at least 15 years.

more than 3 years ago

Car Glass Rules Could Impair Cell, GPS and Radio Signals In CA

fruity_pebbles Re:WTF ? (762 comments)

I think "glazed glass" means literally glass that's installed in some sort of frame (i.e. the panes of glass in a typical house window are glazed into the window frame). TFA says "advanced window glazing". I think we have a Bad Submitter - perhaps his eyes were glazed over when he RTFA.

more than 4 years ago

IE 8.1 Supports Firefox Plugins, Rendering Engine

fruity_pebbles Why isn't this headline PINK? (283 comments)

April Fool's deserves the full color treatment!

more than 5 years ago

How Do You Manage Your SD Card Library?

fruity_pebbles Re:Horde! (485 comments)

My keys, phone, wallet, etc. are always either with me or on top of the tall cabinet that my toddlers can't reach. Fortunately I don't have any pets to worry about (at the moment).

more than 5 years ago

Mobile Firefox Alpha 1 Released

fruity_pebbles Mobile browser for desktop OS?! (148 comments)

I'm really interested in trying Fennec on my actual mobile device. Oh well, I'm glad to see they're making progress.

more than 5 years ago


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