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Don't Cross the LHC Stream! (Maybe)

ldj Re:Already happened before (171 comments)

Heh. Reminds me of a late-'80s story in one of the Seattle newspapers, reporting on plans to use an earth-orbiting satellite to measure the precise height of Mt. Rainier using SONAR.

about 4 years ago
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Ask Matt Asay About Ubuntu and Canonical

ldj Re:Adoption Stories and Influences (310 comments)

The "window of opportunity" for the alternative OS was closing no later than Win 3.1.

So you think Microsoft and Apple are the final-for-all-time winners, and there will never be alternatives to the offerings of those two companies that will hold significant (or, dare I say, dominant) market share on future computing platforms? That is what your statements are saying. Wow. You may want to either reconsider your view of the future or use a few less absolutes in your messages.

more than 4 years ago
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Why You Should Use OpenGL and Not DirectX

ldj Re:OpenGL and the rant about marketing (515 comments)

To make an analogy:

Commentator 1: I think it's too much to expect that an individual, without assistance, design, build, and launch an earth-orbiting satellite.

You: So basically you're saying that the Law of Gravity is completely wrong?

more than 4 years ago
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Inkscape 0.47 Released

ldj Re:Inkscape is great (225 comments)

Whoosh!! Totally missing the point. My comments had nothing to do with how many "bugs" you may have reported. (From your comments, I'm not convinced that you know the difference between a bug and a personal preference.) Sorry to see that you're unable to accept the fact that other people have used many other tools and *choose/prefer* interfaces that you don't. You think that's because people don't know any better?! Wow. Guess this conversation is over. Sounds like my attempt at enlightenment is getting under your skin a bit when you have to resort to swearing.

Since you sound like you plan to continue using Inkscape with its "awful" interface, I'll leave you in this unfortunate predicament you've chosen for yourself. Hopefully, you'll figure out how to better express yourself. First you say Inkscape is not "useless" and that you, in fact, use it. Then you say, "No way any program, no matter how great the usability in Linux, can be usable in Windows or OS X." Hmm.

more than 4 years ago
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Inkscape 0.47 Released

ldj Re:Inkscape is great (225 comments)

That's your opinion, and you're welcome to it. In my opinion, the interface is fine -- not significantly better or worse the the UI for competing applications, both proprietary and open source.

My point is that when people use words like "awful" and "sucks" when describing tools that actually do get the job done (even for those people), it tends to come across like bitching and moaning rather than useful input. What lies lower than "awful" on your scale of quality adjectives? You might want to think about this if you want to be taken seriously instead of being seen as a whiner who's unable to adapt to minor differences in tools (or life's changes).

I realize you're by no means the only person that uses such descriptions, but do you really want to continue to be lumped in with other extremists, fanboys, and whiners?

Sorry for coming across so harsh on Thanksgiving Day, but thought you should know how your continued use of extremes is interpreted. Have a good day!

more than 4 years ago
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Inkscape 0.47 Released

ldj Re:Inkscape is great (225 comments)

I suggest you waste no more of your time on it. It's apparent that it doesn't satisfy your needs or expectations.

The rest of us can form our own opinions. Personally, I appreciate and use Inkscape occasionally, and am happy to see its continued development.

more than 4 years ago
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Inkscape 0.47 Released

ldj Re:The closed circle (225 comments)

There is something to be said for working with the guy who is building a business. The bathrooms are clean and the dishes have been washed. The doors open at seven and close at nine as predictably as the rising and setting of the sun.

Wow, you live in some sort of business Utopia! Based on my lifetime interactions with various retail/service-oriented businesses, I come out pleasantly surprised if I get an experience even close to the image your presenting above. On the other hand, I often have good experiences working with volunteer organizations. Maybe that's partly because volunteers are offering their time because they enjoy helping with the particular task, whereas the primary motivator of paid employees is often the paycheck.

When it comes to software development, there is usually much less chance for user input and interaction with the developer(s) of commercial packages than open source packages. So your opinion depends at least partly on whether you consider yourself simply a consumer or a partner/contributor. Nothing wrong with either viewpoint.

Of course, neither type of entity is a guarantee of good products or services, but I certainly don't agree with your opinion that people generally receive better results when paying than when not.

more than 4 years ago
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GIMP Dropped From Ubuntu 10.04

ldj Re:Where does this leave GIMP? (900 comments)

All of my comments are based on user-type use and not code/API use, though I am a developer.

Then you should know better than to be making such ridiculous comments. There is no correlation between code quality and application functionality, aesthetics, or usability.

more than 4 years ago
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GIMP Dropped From Ubuntu 10.04

ldj Re:Where does this leave GIMP? (900 comments)

Too powerful for normal users, too limited for power users.

Image editing is still way behind Windows and Mac OSX, where you have Photoshop for power users and also Paint Shop Pro for less power users, but who still like a full image editing suite.

And despite your opinion, many, many people have been happily using tools such as the GIMP for image editing on Linux platforms for well over a decade. Many (myself included) have come from a background of using Paint Shop Pro and Photoshop, so we're familiar with the tools that you claim are so much more capable. Your comment may apply to the statistical outliers at either end of the skill/needs spectrum, but the Open Source image editing tools are more than adequate for the majority of users.

more than 4 years ago
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Easing the Job of Family Tech Support?

ldj Re:Not so fast there, kid. (932 comments)

This assumes your family doesn't have a ten to fifteen year investment in Windows hardware, software, and peripherals.

The peripheral can be anything from a multifunction printer to an embroidery machine or an Orion telescope.

Heh, you're really reaching here! Those cases are the outliers, not the norm. At least in my circle of family, friends, coworkers, and acquaintances, I'm not aware of anyone running 10-year-old multifunction printers or embroidery machines. I do have a couple of friends with Orion telescopes, but that wouldn't stop them from dual booting into Windows when they want to use the associated software. But if dual booting or using a virtual machine wasn't an option, I would understand if the 5% or less of the Windows-using population that you're referring to just wanted to stick with Windows.

I prefer to stick to discussing the largest segment of the home computer-using population for topics such as this.

more than 4 years ago
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Some Early Adopters Stung By Ubuntu's Karmic Koala

ldj Re:Professionalism (1231 comments)

I guess we have had much different experiences. I've been using Linux for at least as long as you (started in '93) and have had no significant problems in the last 5 years or so. I've set up dozens of friends, relatives, and coworkers with various Linux distros, all of them coming from a Windows background (and looking for something different because of various problems with Windows). Other than coworkers, practically none of them are overly computer savvy and none of them had Linux/Unix experience. Except for the occasional assist with a distribution upgrade or help identifying and installing an app for a particular purpose, I rarely get calls for help from any of them after the first month or so on Linux. And I'm no light computer user. I do plenty of multimedia creation and editing (audio and video) as well as software development, etc.. As you say, "I could go on." ;)

Sorry to hear that you've had such poor experiences with Linux.

more than 4 years ago
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Some Early Adopters Stung By Ubuntu's Karmic Koala

ldj Re:Professionalism (1231 comments)

And I've had had no problems with installation of most of the Ubuntu releases on my hardware and have friends who encountered problems installing Vista on their systems a while back. So I guess our anecdotes cancel each other, eh? Funny how individual data points don't necessarily mean squat when talking statistics. ;)

I think grandma's success rate will depend more on her specific hardware than on whether she's installing MS or Linux. Also, it's little unfair to compare a typical Linux installation (which includes a multitude of applications) with a typical MS Windows install (which includes practically no significant applications).

more than 4 years ago
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Virus-Like Particles May Mean Speedier Flu Vaccines

ldj Release under the GPL (80 comments)

If they release the particles under the GPL, would that square their viral properties or just double them?

more than 4 years ago
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Fedora 12 Beta Released

ldj Re:Great! (236 comments)

Just playing Devil's advocate. I've been a Linux fan since kernel version 0.29. But I just can't find a distro that works out of the box.

Wow, that is just sad. You've been a fan of Linux for well over 15 years, but still can't find a distro that works out of the box? You have a lot more patience than I do. All of the distros that I've been using since '95 (Yggdrasil, Slackware, Redhat, Knoppix, Mandrake/Mandriva, and Ubuntu) have worked "out of the box" (i.e., off the floppies, CDs, internet, etc.) just fine for all of my family's uses. If I spent all that time being frustrated and let down by any operating system, I'd have given up on it long ago.

more than 4 years ago
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How Nokia Learned To Love Openness

ldj Re:Narrowsighted executives is nothing new. (180 comments)

In some cases it's a real shame, because the Open Source alternative is on par with or better than its closed alternative, but even then the open version rarely dominates the market.

Sheer market dominance, momentum, and large advertising budgets play big roles in this. Except in very rare cases, a new and better product will not take over an existing market rapidly. It takes time. But I think the trends we're seeing are definitely in Open Sources favor.

more than 4 years ago
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MS Word 2010 Takes On TeX

ldj Re:TeX is neither obsolete, or Un-usable (674 comments)

so it costs the most precious thing of all?

To use any word processor to create "good" (for some definitions of "good") quality documents with proper structuring, it takes time to learn. Personally, I've probably wasted more time fighting MS Word's formatting (e.g., arbitrary bullet indentation changes, anyone?) over the years than the time it took me to learn enough LaTeX to be happy and productive.

more than 5 years ago
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Office 2010 Technical Preview Leaked

ldj Re:What the f*** is happening to Office? (341 comments)

Suggesting that I learn LaTeX is similar to suggesting that an accountant use Perl to do computations in a spreadsheet.

Strange analogy. Guess I can't see the point in that, whereas LaTeX does satisfy several document generation capabilities that either word processors can't do or do poorly (e.g., automated high-quality document generation, self-documenting methodologies, author focus on content without constant distraction of formatting concerns).

I suspect you won't agree with these points, and that's fine. In my experience, most people just can't see the point of LaTeX and think it's outdated '80s technology. And the people that hold that opinion almost universally have never really used LaTeX. Funny thing is, for those seriously trying it on a large document, most that I'm aware of feel the week or so getting used to the markup was time well spent.

There are a fair number of LaTeX users who have various complaints about the syntax, need for a GUI, etc.. (And some of these are being addressed.) But they continue to be LaTeX users just for the reasons I note above (among others) -- nothing does a better job for their purposes.

Just my experiences and observations.

more than 5 years ago
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Wolfram Research Releases Mathematica 7

ldj Re:Slashvertisement (234 comments)

Plenty fast for my engineering work.

more than 5 years ago

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