Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!



Ugly Trends Threaten Aviation Industry

gr8_phk LSA is a problem (473 comments)

The Light Sport Aircraft category was supposed to help with the cost by creating a new category of plane that is a bit smaller and hypothetically cheaper. What I've noticed is a very large number of manufacturers in the market which seems good, but none can get enough sales volume to reduce cost.

The cheapest route of course is to build your own, put an engine on that can run car gas, and be your own mechanic. This is not appealing to everyone, and not everyone whom it would appeal to even knows it's an option.

about 7 months ago

Global Warming Since 1997 Underestimated By Half

gr8_phk Especially (534 comments)

Especially when a couple month ago we heard that they overestimated because the temperature increase has stalled over the last 10 years. Perhaps this accounts for the missing temperature rise? But then....

While infilling works well over the oceans, the hybrid model works particularly well at restoring temperatures in the vicinity of the unobserved regions

The method used works well over the oceans - is that where they omitted data and the used the prediction method? But it works "particularly well" where we have no actual data to validate it...

about 10 months ago

Bill Gates's Plan To Improve Our World

gr8_phk Really Bill? (445 comments)

I am a devout fan of capitalism. It is the best system ever devised for making self-interest serve the wider interest. This system is responsible for many of the great advances that have improved the lives of billions—from airplanes to air-conditioning to computers.

Airplanes got invented by individuals - the french were gliding down hillsides and the Wrights read about that and said "fuckin' cool lets do that" and then did it better than anyone else. Only after did they try to commercialize it and capitalism caused some ugly things along the way. Air conditioning I'm not sure about. And Computers were invented for war, not capitalism. Of course business will take anything and try to market it to everyone in order to make a buck, so business does bring advances to the people. That doesn't mean it's the only way, but it was proven effective. In general it doesn't cause innovation. Shit, DOS was a personal project that Bill Gates bought from his friend (without disclosing who he was selling it to and hence got it relatively cheap) - point is that these things often come about due to interests other than capitalism.

about 10 months ago

US Postal Service To Make Sunday Deliveries For Amazon

gr8_phk Re:Obligatory note: the USPS is intentionally brok (258 comments)

Oh, I didn't mean the USPS shouldn't be subsidized. I view it as a government provided service that we pay to use. The government part means it's available everywhere to everyone, while paying to use it makes it more fair. I don't expect it to make money - at best it should brake even, so government subsidy at times is fine. What I have a problem with is first class mail subsidizing junk mail. Without junk mail you'd still need a carrier to visit every day for pickup, but the stop will still be faster without a pile of crap to put in there. Or they could make the service run every other day, but that increases worst case delivery by 2 days. There are lots of ways to make adjustments, but having bulk pay well under 10 cents is really a bad joke since it still uses all the infrastructure that first class has put in place.

If they want to run it like a business and not a government provided service then they at least have to charge enough to pay their bills, and that includes ALL mail.

about 10 months ago

US Postal Service To Make Sunday Deliveries For Amazon

gr8_phk Re:Obligatory note: the USPS is intentionally brok (258 comments)

Whatever their cost, they should charge appropriately. First class mail should not be losing money. Bulk mail should cost more but instead they neglect the delivery cost, claiming the mail person will be making the stop anyway. If USPS is losing money it's because it's used to subsidize marketing for business. If the low cost mail wasn't there I think I'd only get actual first class about 2-3 days a week, so those other 3-4 stops are really for mail that they charge next to nothing for.

about 10 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Where Are the Complete Hosting Providers?

gr8_phk No such thing (178 comments)

Where are the hosting providers that make end-to-end encrypted email/web/VOIP/XMPP easy and automatic for all my clients?

It is up to the user and the mail client to do the encryption. If your hosting provider plays any part in that they will need the keys and can therefore hand them over to others - or do decryption for others and keep the keys. Any way you look at it, end-to-end encryption requires that it be done AT THE END which means on your own machine.

about a year ago

US Executions Threaten Supply of Anaesthetic Used For Surgical Procedures

gr8_phk Re:lethal injection is for sissies (1160 comments)

should have the guts to just shoot those people

Utah had this till 2004 and 3 people who chose it prior to that date may still get it. I looked this up because I recalled someone using it just a while back.

about a year ago

The Fascinating Science Behind Beer Foam

gr8_phk Old news (73 comments)

IIRC the tap on top causes a low pressure wave starting from the bottom that allows the trapped gas to escape and form bubbles. This is not the first time the subject has been researched by a long shot.

about a year ago

Finally, a Bill To End Patent Trolling

gr8_phk Re:Why should not the loser always pay? (162 comments)

I'm not sure about the loser paying when the loser is the defendant. That means you can pay arbitrarily high fees to a lawyer to sue someone as long as you think you'll win. Violate a patent - be bankrupted by someones lawyer fees. OTOH this means individual inventors might be able to defend their patents against large companies easier. It really seems like a windfall for patent lawyers though. Not sure if it's good or bad.

about a year ago

Call Yourself a Hacker, Lose Your 4th Amendment Rights

gr8_phk So call me... (488 comments)

Call me a Polack. ?!?!

about a year ago

Experian Sold Social Security Numbers To ID Theft Service

gr8_phk What about Experian? (390 comments)

Hieu Minh Ngo, the website owner, was recently been indicted for 15-counts filed under seal in November 2012, charging him with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, substantive wire fraud, conspiracy to commit identity fraud, substantive identity fraud, aggravated identity theft, conspiracy to commit access device fraud, and substantive access device fraud.

Why does someone at one level of the crime get charged but not the one at the top. Remember:

Experian — one of the three national U.S. credit bureaus — reportedly sold SSNs through its subsidiary, Court Ventures, to the operators of

Why are they not being charged? Using SSNs for certain things is illegal, and selling them probably is too - otherwise what did the other guy do wrong?

about a year ago

Scientists Say Climate Change Is Damaging Iowa Agriculture

gr8_phk And cover crops (444 comments)

Apparently proper crop rotation along with cover crops in the winter does wonders for the soil. They should change their farming practices even if they insist of trying to fight CO2.

about a year ago

Reprogrammed Bacterium Speaks New Language of Life

gr8_phk Stability of amino acids (141 comments)

It seems to me that the redundancy in the code allows some triplets to be more stable than others. A random change from one letter to another shouldn't be a problem as long as the new triplet codes the same amino acid. In this light I would expect very important pieces of DNA to be coded in a way that allows more variability without changing function. How or if evolution deals with this would be interesting to study.

about 10 months ago

Ask Slashdot: What Are the Hardest Things Programmers Have To Do?

gr8_phk There are no perfect requirements documents (473 comments)

Nobody has requirements. What they have is problems, and it's the engineers job to build something that solves those problems. They may be able to offer some requirements or offer an idea what they want it to look like. The only way they have complete knowledge of what they want is when they already have it - when it's complete. It drives me insane when people put together a development process that shows requirements being complete at the start, or they show the "V" model of development and forget that a big circular arrow goes in the middle showing iteration (this is never accounted for in the schedule because it can't be).

If you expect complete requirements you don't fully understand your job.

about a year ago

Ask Slashdot: What Are the Hardest Things Programmers Have To Do?

gr8_phk Been there, seen that. (473 comments)

I name all of my classes and variables "George." Problem solved.

We were coding with Simulink (diagram based thing). When things get complex you take a group of blocks and group them into a subsystem so you get a hierarchy of block diagrams. Each subsystem displays a name under the box, and everyone tries to give each block a name. People choose names of varying quality, but we had one guy leave the default name on every block "subsystem". To avoid name collisions it adds a counter as a suffix. I expanded the tree-view on the left side of the screen once and was able to fill it top to bottom with "subsystem2" "subsystem3" nested 5 levels deep. There is no way to navigate the code except by looking at the diagrams, but those consist of basic blocks (mostly math operators) and bigger boxes named subsystem. Fortunately some of the signals are labeled.

And of course the guy quit right after delivering this piece of shit to production.

about a year ago

Has Flow-Based Programming's Time Arrived?

gr8_phk Fail (268 comments)

FBP claims to make it easier for non-programmers to build applications by stringing together transformations built by expert programmers.

This notion of allowing non-programmers to do programming is flawed on its face. The challenges of programming can not be overcome by drawing some cute pictures. And if you have expert programmers making the building blocks it will only take them a few minutes more to connect them which eliminates the need for the "non-programmer" entirely. Then there is this notion of "pure functions". Dude, functional programming is a fad. Real programs manipulate data.

I've been "programming" with Simulink for 5 years now and it's great for control systems but shit for most other kinds of programming. So let your controls engineer use it to design and test and even generate C code. Then drop that code into your app and call it as a function. Never let that guy convince your organization that this is the way to go and ALL of the software should be created this way.

about a year ago

DOJ: Defendant Has No Standing To Oppose Use of Phone Records

gr8_phk Careful of that wording: (396 comments)

This goes far beyond the third party doctrine, effectively prosecuting someone and depriving them of the ability to defend themselves by declaring that they have no standing to refute the evidence used against them.

It sounds more like he wants to have the evidence thrown out by claiming it was illegally obtained. That is not the same thing as trying to "refute the evidence".

about a year ago

Collapse of Quantum Wavefunction Captured In Slow Motion

gr8_phk Yves Couder (242 comments)

Are you familiar with the work of Yves Couder? Macroscopic Newtonian systems exhibiting features of quantum behavior. All this voodoo is probably just a lack of understanding.

about a year ago



Facebook Censoring links to free e-books

gr8_phk gr8_phk writes  |  more than 2 years ago

gr8_phk writes "Today Google is celebrating Charles Dickens birthday on their main page. You can download many of his works legally from Project Gutenberg since the copyrights have expired. However, you apparently can not post a link to Gutenberg on Facebook. If you try you'll be greeted with an error message which will go away if you remove the url from your post. Today is not the first time I've tried this. Is Facebook blocking links to the competition of places like Amazon? Why can I post a link to Amazon and not Gutenberg, and why does Facebook lie to me about it?"

DX11 comming to Linux - but not Windows XP

gr8_phk gr8_phk writes  |  more than 3 years ago

gr8_phk (621180) writes "As reported over at Phoronix, the Direct X 11 API now has an open source implementation on top of Gallium3d which should ease porting of games to Linux with or without Wine. While still in its infancy, you can see where this is heading. All this while Microsoft hasn't offered DX11 for their own aging WindowsXP. Could it be that Linux may soon support this Microsoft API better than Microsoft itself?"
Link to Original Source

Nouveau makes it to mainline

gr8_phk gr8_phk writes  |  more than 4 years ago

gr8_phk (621180) writes "Over at Phoronix they have been covering a flurry of discussion over the last days regarding the nouveau driver for nVidia cards going into the 2.6.33 kernel. It looks like Linus got his way. So 2010 will see proper open source video drivers for Intel, AMD, and ATI out of the box. Hopefully 3D will be in good shape across the board as well. RIP nv. The discussion is quite entertaining — it's the first time I've seen Linus demand something so big be pushed into the kernel. Alan Cox's comments are funny as well."

gr8_phk gr8_phk writes  |  more than 7 years ago

gr8_phk (621180) writes "After hearing time and again how much spam comes from infected computers I keep having this thought: Infected customers of any large ISP are probably spamming other customers of the same ISP. Wouldn't it be helpful if they stored the email address of the sender (based on source IP which they issued via DHCP) and provide a way for the recipient to notify the ISP when they get SPAM? Then for sources with frequent spam reports, the ISP could send a message to the owner of the spam-bot and tell them to fix the problem. Could they also look for forged From addresses and do much the same thing without input from the recipient? Do either of these risk false positives? I've never heard of anyone getting an automated notification that they may have a problem. Does slashdot think this viable or useful?"


gr8_phk has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>