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Comments

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Lenovo Want Ashton Kutcher As More Than Just a Pretty Face

johndmartiniii Re:!Steve Jobs (101 comments)

Whoopsie daisy.

about 10 months ago
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Hacked Companies Fight Back With Controversial Steps

johndmartiniii Re:It's up to /. (320 comments)

Is /, better than /.?

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Large-Scale DIY Outdoor Cooling of Cairo's Tahrir Square?

johndmartiniii Re:Solar Updraft? (259 comments)

I think you mean domes (qubaab in Arabic). You find them in a lot of Middle East architecture. Minarets (maazin in Arabic) are the towers attached to mosques which were classically used to call the azaan--the Muslim call to prayer. They largely have no function now as all but the most anachronistic muezzins call the prayer using a microphone and loudspeakers. I suppose the minarets are a good place to hang the loudspeakers.

more than 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Large-Scale DIY Outdoor Cooling of Cairo's Tahrir Square?

johndmartiniii Re:Ridiculous troll (259 comments)

This is not a troll. Or if he is, he has is head unwittingly in the right place.

There have been protests again in Tahrir for about a week. They ramped up on Friday and haven't really abated since. They also regularly happen on Fridays. The Egyptian army have been hesitant to use force again after a few recent incidents which got entirely out of hand. Here's a link to a local English translation daily on the protests this past weekend: http://www.almasryalyoum.com/en/node/475123.

It is not unreasonable for protesters in Cairo to be concerned about this sort of thing at all. The biggest protests happened in the middle of the winter when cold is a serious issue, particularly at night. Up until the beginning of July the weather has been quite mild, but just this week we have had two 40+C days. Yesterday was still stifling at 38C. Today is a breath of fresh air (sort of) at 32C, but it is always about 4-6 degrees hotter downtown, even with the river right there. It can be terribly dangerous. It's easy to get dehydrated or to develop heat/sun stroke rapidly without realizing it.

more than 3 years ago
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Armed Robot Drones To Join UK Police Force

johndmartiniii But... (311 comments)

will the armed robot drones run Linux?

more than 4 years ago
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Does Your College Or University Support Linux?

johndmartiniii Nope (835 comments)

I am at the American University in Cairo and the IT department here neither uses or supports any Linux. There is a general suspicion in the wider computing community in Egypt that you must pay for something, particularly software, for it to be any good. So, everyone just pirates copies of Windows and then steals closed/proprietary software from each other. Brilliant situation.

more than 4 years ago
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Standalone GPS Receivers Going the Way of the Dodo

johndmartiniii Re:A good thing! (422 comments)

Also, knowing where the fuck you are is pretty cheap as well.

more than 5 years ago
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Google Reveals Chrome Hardware Partners

johndmartiniii Re:Dell's netbooks (343 comments)

Yes. A plan that you are then locked into. Perfect...

more than 5 years ago
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Google Reveals Chrome Hardware Partners

johndmartiniii Re:Marketing..... (343 comments)

This would appear to be happening too soon for them to replace X. Crome will likely just have a branded UI running over X just like with Linpus or Mint. That is, unless this has been in the works for a long time and they are now only telling us about it. Possible, but not likely.

more than 5 years ago
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Daily Sex Helps Improve Fertility

johndmartiniii Re:Nothing to do with sex... (174 comments)

True enough. I sometimes accidentally read comments elsewhere and think "What the #*$% is wrong with these people?" /.ers can at least sort of spell and use complete sentences. This indicates that any /. offspring might have a chance at being a bit better spoken than their peers if not actually more intelligent.

more than 5 years ago
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Why Don't MMOs Allow Easier Transportation?

johndmartiniii Re:What do you want... (337 comments)

Yah, that would be a nice place to start wouldn't it?

more than 5 years ago
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Why Don't MMOs Allow Easier Transportation?

johndmartiniii What do you want... (337 comments)

a WoW Undeground?

more than 5 years ago
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How Do You Sync & Manage Your Home Directories?

johndmartiniii Re:My setup (421 comments)

I have been doing something like this for a few years now with an NSLU2 loaded with Debian. NFS shares between systems when I am at home. Rsync mirrors the 1TB disk on the server. I have recently been using Back-in-time to keep incremental snapshots. I will upgrade to the OpenRD-Client when we manage to get Debian sorted out fully on the SOC that it uses (which is the same as the SheevaPlug).

It isn't exactly the sort of solution the asker in TFA is seeking, but it could be applied similarly to meet his needs.

more than 5 years ago
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Best Handset For Freedom?

johndmartiniii Re:Also, Father Dowd, (232 comments)

Do you really think that the Iranian revolution in 1979 was bloodless?

more than 5 years ago
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Best Handset For Freedom?

johndmartiniii Re:There's only one obvious choice... (232 comments)

Yes, Openmoko is the obvious choice. Unfortunately, the project died because everyone complained about silly aspects. Whether or not it worked as a phone was immaterial. It could do all sorts of things AND it would also work as a phone (if not fully at present, then in the future). Ah well.

more than 5 years ago
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Frank Herbert's Moisture Traps May Be a Reality

johndmartiniii Quite a lot... (226 comments)

...of water in the desert air, apparently.

The caretaker of my building in Cairo directs the water that condenses in all of the air-conditioner units in the building into the gardens. While it isn't energy efficient AT ALL, I am always surprised by how much water gets to the garden. And as the weather gets hotter, the residents use their air-con more meaning more water for the garden. Again, it's not energy efficient in any way, but it does save water by reclaiming it from the air, and quite a lot of it.

more than 5 years ago
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Inflatable Tower Could Climb To the Edge of Space

johndmartiniii Re:Why dead? (296 comments)

Yeah, but who cares about the space elevator when we have the above new idea for the wooden badger?

more than 5 years ago
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What To Do With 78 USB Drives Next Christmas?

johndmartiniii Re:Easy (381 comments)

Ditto on this. Do what you mentioned above but include a Rick Roll as the apocalyptic catalyst. Just be careful to weigh whether or not it will actually be an apocalyptic catalyst.

more than 5 years ago
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"Tweenbots" Test NYC Pedestrian-Robot Relations

johndmartiniii Cairo (197 comments)

These little guys would be totally fucked in Cairo.

more than 5 years ago
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Can Mobile Broadband Solve the UK Digital Divide?

johndmartiniii Odd (113 comments)

Does it seem strange to anyone else that the UK should on one hand wish to make broadband internet ubiquitous, while on the other hand wish to monitor internet traffic so closely?

more than 5 years ago

Submissions

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Journalism Benefits from Technology, Not Opposite

johndmartiniii johndmartiniii writes  |  more than 5 years ago

johndmartiniii writes "Jack Shafer's column this week at Slate.com gives a perspective on modern journalism different from the one we usually hear regarding declining print news agencies. Rather than destroying the industry, Shafer argues that technological advances in publishing have only served to keep journalism alive, as long as journalists and news bureaus were willing to evolve as well. From the article: 'Technology, culture, business, and audience tastes are always in flux, making it the job of writers young and old to grab the best available tools and get to the business of chronicling the world. The cheap tools and affordable devices the average Joe has at his disposal to produce precision journalism and distribute it around the world are enough to make the reporters of yesterday sob in envy. It's the difference between digging ditches with a spade and excavating a canal with dynamite.'"
Link to Original Source
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Firefox 3.5 Reviewed

johndmartiniii johndmartiniii writes  |  more than 5 years ago

johndmartiniii writes "Farhad Manjoo has a review of Firefox 3.5 at Slate.com this week. From the article:

"Lately I've been worried about Firefox. Ever since its debut in 2004, the open-source Web browser has won acclaim for its speed, stability, and customizability. It eventually captured nearly a quarter of the market, an astonishing achievement for a project run by a nonprofit foundation. But recently Firefox seemed to go soft." The worried tone in the beginning of the review gives way to excitement over the HTML5 features being implemented, saying that thus far Firefox 3.5 "offers the best implementation of the standard--and because it's the second-most-popular Web browser in the world, the new release is sure to prompt Web designers to create pages tailored to the Web's new language.""

Link to Original Source
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Microsoft to "Give Away" Anti-virus Softwa

johndmartiniii johndmartiniii writes  |  more than 5 years ago

johndmartiniii writes "Microsoft is preparing to release a beta version of an anti-virus program called "Morro". It will apparently lack many of the features of full security suites by companies such as McAffee and Symantec and focus only on virus detection and removal. In this case it is probably best to attempt to do one thing and try to do it well rather than a bunch of tasks. This is Microsoft's second attempt to move into the virus removal game. Perhaps it will be more successful than their OneCare offering last year."
Link to Original Source
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Twitter Experiment in Parapsychology

johndmartiniii johndmartiniii writes  |  more than 5 years ago

johndmartiniii writes "New Scientist has a story about a Richard Wisemann's Twitter-based study in paranormal psychology. He asked Twitter-users to send him responses based on psychic questions like "Where am I right now?" and "What am I looking at?" Each of the four tests conducted returned negative results. Interesting method or practical joke on parapsychology fanatics everywhere?"
Link to Original Source
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Ubuntu Partners with Unison

johndmartiniii johndmartiniii writes  |  about 6 years ago

johndmartiniii writes "Ubuntu has apparently partnered with Unison to bring "the first fully-unified communications software" to both Ubuntu Server Edition as well as the Desktop Edition in the form of a beta

Canonical indicated in the news feed at Ubuntu.com that this partnership would present a truly viable alternative to Microsoft Windows, Office and Outlook. It is a bit too early to tell. The link in the news posting had no actual software at Ubuntu's site and at Unison there was a download link, but none for a Debian software package. There is a "unison" package in the Ubuntu repositories, but beware: it is not the same software. The repo "unison" is a file-sync program, not a "fully-unified communications software." Ouch. This might make new or fledgling Ubuntu users a little hesitant to try it out. I suppose only time will tell."

Link to Original Source
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ChaCha steps on own feet cutting contractor wages

johndmartiniii johndmartiniii writes  |  about 6 years ago

johndmartiniii writes "The ChaCha human-aided search service has announced that they will be cutting the pay of their "guides" by 50% on August 14th, according to TechCrunch. This seems to have caused an uproar at the forums used by the Guides. The change may cause a huge exodus of the humans inside this Mechanical Turk, leaving ChaCha without enough guides to meet their apparently ever-increasing demand. The company has indicated to its current army of searchers that it will be switching to a "performance-based system" for deciding payment levels. The current rate of $0.20 per assisted search doesn't seem like a great deal as it is, but a 50% pay cut is a 50% pay cut. The ChaCha Official Guide Blog responded to the uproar with this post.

The "guides" are all "private contractors," according to ChaCha's guide manual. What would Slashdotters do if someone they were contracting for informed them of a 50% cut in their previously agreed-upon rate?"

Link to Original Source
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Worldwide Scientology Protest

johndmartiniii johndmartiniii writes  |  about 6 years ago

johndmartiniii writes "Apparently, there is a massive protest being mounted against the Church of Scientology. The group, ANONYMUS or project Chanology—depending on who you ask, has been using viral marketing—who isn't?—to get out their message and the plans for the protest. This could be fascinating, or totally lame. I can only imagine the landslide of litigation in response to "slander" on such a grand scale. And where is Tom Cruise on this?"
Link to Original Source
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Retrofit Notebook Reinforcement

johndmartiniii johndmartiniii writes  |  more than 6 years ago

johndmartiniii writes "I am about to move out of the United States, and do quite a bit of traveling in the process. I have a notebook that I really like, but whose case I don't really trust to take the knocks it might receive in traveling. I have looked into all sorts of reinforced cases and sleeves and such, but I was wondering if anyone had any ideas about retrofitting some sort of rugged reinforcement. My particular concern is that the lid of this machine seems particularly prone to bending. Any ideas?"
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Online Jihad and Internet Free Speech

johndmartiniii johndmartiniii writes  |  more than 6 years ago

johndmartiniii writes "This and several older articles identify concern that the traditional security measures taken against Islamic terrorist groups are not effective when it comes to the internet. While I certainly do not endorse use of the internet for recruiting fanatics to be involved in these groups, I wonder what the free-speech cost will be when the hammer comes down on this sort of thing. Will laws spell out more clearly the violations necessary to take down sites or track the data of users? Or, will laws like the USA_PATRIOT act simply be utilized for these scenarios as well? This is a bit scary for researchers (like yours truly) who troll Jihadi websites and forums looking for data which may be help us gain insight into the motivations behind violent actions taken by members of extremists. Who is to say that we will not start detaining them as well? I am trying not to argue for a slippery slope—obviously not a sound argument—but that certainly doesn't help to assuage any anxiety I might have over ever-increasing surveillance, and how it can be misused."
Link to Original Source

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