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Duolingo is a Free, Crowdsourced Language Learning App (Video)

ianezz Really nice, but... (75 comments)

I'm trying it these days (to refresh and improve my German), and I have to say I've become sort of addicted. I can't really vouch on the quality of their courses, since the only one available for speakers of my mother tongue (English for Italian speakers) isn't that good yet (fine for most lessions, but the more advanced ones have definitively weird italian translations that could throw you off a bit). Hopefully, the courses for English speaking people are better. The web interface for the courses seems to be well-thought (lots of easy keyboard shortcuts) and works surprisingly well, didn't try the mobile applications yet.

On the other side, for what I could see, the translations you are kindly asked to do "to repay" them are usually poorly-written descriptions of commercial articles/ads, nothing really interesting, and the related web interface has some rough spots (just some quirks, but they get distracting).

That being said, I believe it's still the best online resource I've seen yet to get your feet wet with a foreign language (provided you know English)

about 5 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Correlation Between Text Editor and Programming Language?

ianezz Emacs, Vim (359 comments)

GNU Emacs for every programming language but Java (C, C++, SQL, Tcl, Python, Perl, Javascript, shell scripting), XML, HTML and CSS. Because it's the same on all platforms and ELisp comes to the rescue when I need it. Vim for configuration files (because vi is everywhere and it's the same on all platforms). Eclipse for Java code, because it does the job and because of the plugins that sometimes are required (but for large edits, I use GNU Emacs as an external editor - because it's faster). After 20+ years in the field, I have to have a really good reason to try other editors. These fill all my needs.

about 5 months ago
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First Phone Out of Microsoft-Nokia -- and It's an Android

ianezz Not Linux, XENIX !!!! (193 comments)

Wish I had mod points. You made my day :-)

about 5 months ago
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Nokia Unveils OLED Phone You Control By Bending

ianezz Re:two-hands control (110 comments)

Uhm, perhaps it's just me, but other than when doing the pinch gesture to zoom in/out, I use my phone with one hand (a Samsung Galaxy S2). And there are other ways to zoom (albeit more awkward).

about 3 years ago
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Mozilla Labs Introduces the Webian Shell

ianezz Am I the only one... (216 comments)

... whose first thought after reading "Webian" was "Debian for wabbits"?

more than 3 years ago
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BBC Site Uses Cookies To Inform Visitors of Anti-Cookie Law

ianezz Re:Here's how it goes: (98 comments)

Back in the day, I remember a setting on iBrowse (Amiga) that caused the browser to ask before accepting each and every cookie. I don't see that setting on my current browsers, though I may just be overlooking it

Firefox has such setting, with the option to ask what to do for every cookie a website tries to set/update (which quiclky gets annoying), plus an option in to remember your choice for all subsequent cookies from that website. It's there in Preferences->Privacy->History->Use custom settings.

more than 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Linux Distro For Computational Cluster?

ianezz No X servers required on servers... (264 comments)

It has to have an X-windows server since we use that remotely from our Windows

Just to clear out a misconception that arises from time to time: you do not need an X server on a server exactly in the same way you don't need a web browser on your HTTP server. To understand that, you can think of an X server as a "browser" for the X protocol. On the server you just need some support libraries (which help applications in talking the X protocol).

more than 3 years ago
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Firefox 4 Beta 12 Released; Fixes Over 650 Bugs

ianezz Re:But there's no status bar (181 comments)

its still better than the in-the-address-bar approach

Uhm, but now a malicious page can probably display a fake destination just by using CSS and Javascript (just make up a pop-up at the bottom left corner of the window).

more than 3 years ago
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Apple Releases IOS 4.3 Beta To Developers

ianezz Re:anyone else here... (101 comments)

Anyone else here miss the days when ios meant Cisco?

Not really, but reading "Apple" next to "IOS" still makes me rise an eyebrow.

more than 3 years ago
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NASA Names Best & Worst Sci-Fi Movies of All Time

ianezz Re:Here is the list. (610 comments)

I find it interesting that NASA showed no love for 2001: A Space Odyssey.

I'd say that's because of the story bottom line: human intelligence as a gift from aliens refusing any further contact until men can fly into space. And men creating their human-like intelligences. Fascinating? A lot (I still watch it in awe from time to time). Realistic? The possibility of that actually happening are frankly remote, but not plateally impossible (so that's why 2001 doesn't make it in neither category).

more than 3 years ago
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After IPv4, How Will the Internet Function?

ianezz Re:It will prety much suck for quite some time. (320 comments)

It's difficult to manipulate binary digits in hexadecimal, too. I don't see any advantage to this.

One hex digit represents exactly 4 binary digits. One octal digit represents exactly 3 binary digits. A decimal digit represents... something between 3 and 4 binary digits. ;-)

more than 2 years ago
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OS I'd Most Like To See Make a Comeback

ianezz Re:hp/ux (763 comments)

It's HP-UX, not hp/ux. And the tool was "glance". And yes, I'm typing this from an HP 712/100 running HP-UX 10.20 and Netscape Communicator 4 Now, get off my lawn! ;-)

more than 3 years ago
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How To Get Rejected From the App Store

ianezz Re:using vendor API's !welcome? (252 comments)

Didn't Micro$oft have API's that they used and didn't want anyone else to use? Didn't they get lambasted for that?

Apple is not (yet?) a monopoly.

more than 4 years ago
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Quantum Teleportation Achieved Over 16 km In China

ianezz Re:I don't get it (389 comments)

Since you cannot determine the state of an entangled particle, you cannot use it to "transmit" information until after you let the other end know, through conventional channels, what each possible state actually stands for

As far as I know (very little, please correct me if I'm wrong), you can't neither predict nor influence the outcome of measurements, but you can be sure they will be the same at both ends, unless someone is eavesdropping in the middle. The flow of measures can then be used as a one time pad to encrypt something at one end, transmit it over a conventional channel, and decrypt it at the other end.

more than 4 years ago
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BSA Says Software Theft Exceeded $51B In 2009

ianezz Re:Let Me Add to the List; I'm Good at This Too (350 comments)

So what kind of logic is that? If I point at your car and say "Give it to me" and you go "Ok" and hand me the keys then there'll be no theft

Poor analogy, indeed, since you can't create exact copies of someone's car for cents.

more than 4 years ago
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Free Software To Save Us From Social Networks

ianezz Re:Doesn't make sense (249 comments)

In a nutshell, I understand it as

  • run your own server in your home;
  • keep your data on it (on encrypted storage) instead of keeping it in some remote datacenter;
  • use a policy to carefully select who can access to it (i.e. your friends);
  • in case of emergency, unplug it from the wall;
  • encrypted backups go onto your friend's servers.

Basically, Freenet on a wall-plug computer.

more than 4 years ago
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No Glasses Needed For TI's New 3D Display

ianezz Re:Effective viewing angle? (165 comments)

But much more than 5% of the global spending power.

100 times more?

more than 4 years ago

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