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Comments

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Google Announces Inbox, a New Take On Email Organization

markhb Re:More changes I don't want ... (169 comments)

You do realize that "high IQ individuals that have fuck all common sense" used to be Slashdot's key demographic, don't you?

2 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: Aging and Orphan Open Source Projects?

markhb Re: Options... (149 comments)

SourceForge was open-source in its earliest days, and then they stopped open-sourcing later releases as they added more features that were intended to generate revenue. There was indeed a lot of coverage of SourceForge's failings here, even though both Sourceforge and /. were owned by (I think) VA Software at the time.

2 days ago
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Warner Brothers Announces 10 New DC Comics Movies

markhb Re:To quote TBBT (187 comments)

They've confirmed it will be Jason Momoa.

about a week ago
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Worcester Mass. City Council Votes To Keep Comcast From Entering the Area

markhb Re:Awesome quote (232 comments)

As was said below, cable TV is a natural monopoly: in all but a few very densely-populated areas (as in, parts of Manhattan dense) there isn't enough potential profit to make it worth their while to set up a competing cable plant. Forget TW and Comcast for the moment, in how many parts of the country are there ANY localities with competing cable companies where one of them isn't government-owned, even when the franchises are specifically non-exclusive (as they are in my state)? That's not a result of illegal collusion, that's a result of the fact that competing for anything other than the initial franchise agreement is a stupid business decision.

Plus, you appear to have misrepresented what the NYT article said: the sentence "Under conventional antitrust standards, it's pretty much an open-and-shut case" is actually saying that it's an open-and-shut case that the merger would not affect competition, and would be approved. The people raising the "potential competition" issue are the opponents of the merger!

Incidentally, the "guy they got to comment for the story" is a woman named Susan, who is actually a professor of IP law, and in fact a former member of the board of directors of ICANN, so by /. standards doesn't that make her evil?

about a week ago
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Goodbye, World? 5 Languages That Might Not Be Long For This World

markhb Re:"Microsoft's long love of BASIC...." (547 comments)

If the WP article is accurate, Commodore's PET BASIC was a licensed Microsoft product, and as I mentioned so was the version in the TRS-80. So other than Apple's, I would say that the parent's statement that "the BASICs for most early PCs and home computers came from Microsoft", regardless of the fact that any other OS layer may or may not have, is accurate. And as others have pointed out, the first MS BASIC was in 1975 with the Altair, but I never used one of those so I went with "at least" as old as the TRS-80.

about two weeks ago
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Goodbye, World? 5 Languages That Might Not Be Long For This World

markhb "Microsoft's long love of BASIC...." (547 comments)

From TFA:

Microsoft’s long love of the BASIC programming language extends all the way back to 1991, when the company purchased a pretty awesome (for its time) visual programming designer from Alan Cooper.

I'd say that MS's love of BASIC goes back at least a decade before that; they wrote the ROM BASIC for the TRS-80 (as I found when doing a PEEK scan through it).

about two weeks ago
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Yahoo Shuttering Its Web Directory

markhb Re:RIP (116 comments)

We don't speak of DejaNews?

about three weeks ago
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Yahoo Shuttering Its Web Directory

markhb Re:Moderation (116 comments)

It should be possible since Flamebait is a -1.

about three weeks ago
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Steve Ballmer Authored the Windows 3.1 Ctrl-Alt-Del Screen

markhb Re:"Stuff that matters" (169 comments)

Oh, it was the OLD version he wrote (I haven't RTFA yet). I was hoping to blame him for IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL!

about a month and a half ago
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A Thousand Kilobots Self-Assemble Into Complex Shapes

markhb They've invented Transformers! (56 comments)

Imagine a Beowulf cluster of these babies! (Sorry, I'm still on a retro kick.)

about 2 months ago
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Getting IT Talent In Government Will Take Culture Change, Says Google Engineer

markhb Re:It's more than the tie (166 comments)

That's a distinction without a difference. The people in the private sector are wasting the investors / suppliers / customers money.

The difference is that the investors / suppliers / customers have a choice when dealing with a particular private company. We have no real choice regarding paying our taxes (assuming one doesn't want to wind up in a courtroom over it).

about 2 months ago
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Nokia Buys a Chunk of Panasonic

markhb Network stuff is fine... (54 comments)

Just so long as they don't stop them from making 50" plasma TV's before it's time to upgrade my current set!

about 3 months ago
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Nearly 25 Years Ago, IBM Helped Save Macintosh

markhb Re:Intel (236 comments)

Microsoft was signed up to port Windows NT and it looked like you'd be able to run Windows and MacOS (the two most popular desktop operating systems) and possibly some of the other less-popular ones (most of which were m68k-based) on the same hardware.

You left out OS/2, which Lou Gerstner hadn't given up on yet (although the nightmare of the PPC port helped him make up his mind). IBM at this point still had hopes of re-conquering the desktop market, and the CHRP (Common Hardware Reference Platform, aka PPC hardware design) was part of that. Alas, it was not to be. I have booted exactly one machine in my life - a small tower RS/6000 running AIX - that came up and proclaimed itself to be a CHRP machine.

IIRC, either Windows NT 4.0 or Windows 2000 did, in fact, ship with a PowerPC install on the CD, alongside i386, Alpha and MIPS. Whichever it was was also the last of the NT line to support multiple architectures until 64-bit came along.

about 3 months ago
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Following EU Ruling, BBC Article Excluded From Google Searches

markhb In other news.... (239 comments)

A family is reporting that a stranger named "Stan O'Neil" has invaded their home, apparently using a key to the premises, and is claiming to be their husband and father. The woman who heads the family says she does not remember ever seeing the man before, but could not name the father of her children or the person who gave her what appeared to be wedding and engagement rings.

about 4 months ago
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Following EU Ruling, BBC Article Excluded From Google Searches

markhb Re:Massive loses? (239 comments)

I think if they attach your name to a blockquote in a story, they apply the "you own your own words" policy and leave it as-is without so much as a smug (sic). For those portions of the story they actually write themselves, it is not required that they spell or use grammar more correctly than CmdrTaco did.

about 4 months ago
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Google Fiber Is Officially Making Its Way To Portland

markhb Re:Is it is? (153 comments)

I'd say that the "Portland" is the one in Maine that has a city in Oregon named after it. In fact ISTR that the Oregon folks lost a United Way bet to us a couple of decades ago in which they promised to change their name if they lost. Still waiting for that.

(Waiting for the folks on the English island that has all the cement to jump in...)

about 4 months ago
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Teacher Tenure Laws Ruled Unconstitutional In California

markhb Re:You make it... (519 comments)

In what world can "any [individual] elected school board member fire all those teachers"? Any school board I've ever seen can only act as a body; individual members can't do squat.

At any rate, public education unions tend to be some of the strongest out there; it shouldn't be harder to release a teacher than it is to fire any other unionized worker. Tenure at the university level serves a purpose: to ensure the academic freedom of the faculty to perform the research they see fit by insulating them from the vagaries of administrations. I'd be hard pressed to find a full-time public school K-12 teacher who does meaningful research as part of their job.

about 4 months ago
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Toyota Investigating Hovercars

markhb Re: aka (186 comments)

What about off-solid-ground applications, where they are already used? I have an actual use case in mind for a hover vehicle similar to a DUKW, where it could go into hovercraft mode over water that is too shallow to use conventional craft mode, but with a bottom too shallow to use the tires.

However, the on-road applications face another stumbling block: the laws in my US state (and likely most if not all of the others) require all vehicles used on public roads to be exclusively propelled by means of power-driven wheels in physical contact with the pavement. No hovercraft, no strapping a jet turbine to the roof and throwing it in neutral.

about 4 months ago

Submissions

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T-Mobile presents Facebook Voice Chat

markhb markhb writes  |  more than 3 years ago

markhb writes "T-Mobile has announced Bobsled, a Facebook app which enables VoIP voice chat via the Facebook Chat interface. Plans for the future include video chat and apps for Android, PC, and tablets. From the announcement: "Once downloaded, customers can use the Bobsled application for Facebook to place voice calls to their friends through Facebook Chat with just one click. This is one of the first VoIP application seamlessly integrated into Facebook Chat, which makes it quick and simple to place an impromptu call to a Facebook friend. The application eliminates the need for dialing – users simply click on a friend’s name to start the conversation. There’s also no need to remember screen names or to input numbers. With the new application, customers can also leave a voice message for friends when they’re not available. Anyone on Facebook can receive a call; no application download is required to receive a call via the Bobsled application for Facebook. " No word on how this is going to make them any money."
Link to Original Source
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Google: Um.. err... better now?

markhb markhb writes  |  more than 6 years ago

markhb writes "Google has rescinded the "We have rights to everything you look at through our browser" portion of their EULA for Chrome. As some commented, they just reused their global Terms of Service, apparently without thinking too much about it. Those readers who are programmers might recognize this as a "copy and paste error.""
Link to Original Source
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markhb markhb writes  |  about 8 years ago

markhb writes "Sure, Google can show you your house, but can they show you what where there before your house? A Maine company is building a database of historic maps, making them scrollable and searchable much like Google is. The plan, as reported in today's Portland newspaper, is to eventually make it into a 3-dimensional map database: length, width and time."
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markhb markhb writes  |  more than 8 years ago

markhb (11721) writes "While the BBC homepage at www.bbc.co.uk appears to be working, squatters seem to have taken over the Beeb's News domain, as a look at news.bbc.co.uk will show. The BBC News site is one of the most heavily-viewed sites in the world, so this is likely to be disruptive — or at least disturbing — to many until it is fixed."

Journals

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"be the majority of voters"

markhb markhb writes  |  about 11 years ago

In case you're wondering about an old posting of mine which contains the phrase "Remainder of my .sig:", the full .sig was originally supposed to be:

Those who would surrender essential liberty for a little temporary security may deserve neither, but they tend to be the majority of voters.

AFIAK, I am the source of that statement, with apologies to Ben Franklin.

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