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Comments

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Ask Slashdot: How/Where To Start Watching Dr. Who?

natehoy Re:At the risk of my nerd card... (655 comments)

The 2005 reboot is what got my wife interested in Doctor Who at first. Once we ran out of new ones between seasons, I started with "An Unearthly Child" and we've watched pretty much everything but the reconstructed episodes (and even a few of those). We just finished the Season 16 "Key to Time" series, and we'll probably watch all the way through Baker, Davison, C Baker, Sylvester McCoy, and the McGann special, then start again with "Rose" and watch the new reboot with a different context and from a different perspective.

As a side effect, she's starting to learn basic database stuff and her geek card is on its way. (grin) Love ya, honey.

more than 3 years ago
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Phony Web Certs Issued For Google, Yahoo, Skype

natehoy Re:Patches? (151 comments)

Microsoft IE uses an SSL library that is part of the OS. The advantage of that is that any fixes affect all applications that choose to use that library, like SSH tools and some web browsers (Safari tends to use MS libraries). The disadvantage is that any vulnerabilities in the browser can easily translate into OS-level vulnerabilities due to the deep interoperability between them.

Windows Update is a package manager, it's just limited to Microsoft product. I tend to prefer the Linux approach where you have a central repository and get updates for ALL your software in one place, which is why I run that, but Windows Update works perfectly well as a package manager. There are plenty of IE (and Excel) software updates that come down through Windows Update, so I really fail to see any point other than trollage for your entire post.

more than 3 years ago
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Phony Web Certs Issued For Google, Yahoo, Skype

natehoy Re:Patches? (151 comments)

These are the revocation lists. They're being updated.

3.6.16 of Firefox (for example) merely adds the new certs to the blacklist. Microsoft issued a Windows Update that updates the blacklist at the operating system level.

more than 3 years ago
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Firefox 4, A Day Later

natehoy Re:Development process (435 comments)

I'm not completely sure what you mean by "wipe your session history on exit", I'm assuming you are referring to the "clear history when Firefox Closes" settings. So, for that...

I turned on wiping of the following on exit:
  - Download History
  - Active Logins
  - Cache

I left the following unchecked (because these are three things I like to keep around):
  - Browsing History
  - Form and Search History
  - Cookies

No matter how many "regular" tabs I have open, the only "regular" tab that comes open when I start Firefox is my home tab.

All of my "app" tabs come up, even if I tell Firefox not to open my "home" tabs on startup.

So it appears to me that they are being handled as two very separate things, but maybe I'm misunderstanding the setting you're referring to.

more than 3 years ago
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Firefox 4, A Day Later

natehoy Re:So is there a way to revert to the old layout y (435 comments)

Right-click on the tabs, un-check "Tabs on Top".

To move the buttons around, right-click on any button and click "customize". Drag them around to your heart's content.

more than 3 years ago
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Firefox 4, A Day Later

natehoy Re:Development process (435 comments)

A lot of that problem was the "bit off more than they could chew" nature of FF4 development. Hopefully, as the FF team starts working on smaller iterations like everyone else, they'll start coming out with newer features at a more rapid pace and not stuck with massive amounts of regression testing because they're changing damned near everything all at once.

We'll see. FF4 development really set them back, and they may or may not catch up quickly (or ever). But at least with FF4 they are back in the race as a solid contender.

more than 3 years ago
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Firefox 4, A Day Later

natehoy Re:Development process (435 comments)

They should work the way pinned apps work in a Windows 7 taskbar or OS X dock, namely when you restart your session the app tabs should be there.

That's exactly how they do work for me. I have several Intranet apps that I've got "pinned" as "app tabs", and when I start Firefox 4 those tabs start right up with it. None of the other tabs auto-restore themselves; I have to open them manually (or set them up as home page(s) and have them set up to open when Firefox does).

more than 3 years ago
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Firefox 4 Released!

natehoy Re:Addon compatibility? (554 comments)

There's an add-on called "is it compatible" that shows what Firefox versions your add-ons are compatible with. I haven't installed it, but it is supposed to list compatibility right in the add-ons page so you can look for things that don't go "up to 4".

AdBlock Plus, Ghostery, and NoScript are three add-ons I won't run Firefox without, and they've all been compatible since the early days of the beta.

more than 3 years ago
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Firefox 4 Released!

natehoy Re:Pleased so far (554 comments)

In addition to the "Tabs on Top" change mentioned in the other reply to your post, you can easily move the buttons around to your liking. Right-click on any of the buttons, click "Customize", and drag buttons around to your heart's content. I have mine set up as Back/Forward, Home, Reload, Shortcuts, Stop, URL/AwesomeBar, Google Search, then the buttons for AdblockPlus and NoScript, and finally Feedback. Took me a lot less time to change them than it took me to list them in this post. ;)

more than 3 years ago
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University Switches To DC Workstations

natehoy Re:The Prius Effect (468 comments)

Here we have an extra conversion loss but somehow it's better.

What?

The systems are on a UPS. UPSes use batteries. Batteries are DC. So, if you want to use a UPS, you have AC coming in that has to be converted to DC (to charge the batteries) and the AC power goes through the UPS to the computer, which converts it to DC. When the power goes out, the DC is taken from the battery, converted to AC, sent to the computer, then the power supply converts it to DC to run the computer.

With a DC computer, you need one conversion, AC to DC. The same DC can be used to charge the batteries and run the computer, and when the power goes out the battery can run the computer directly with no additional conversion.

So if anything the exact opposite of your assertion is true. There are either the same number of conversions (done through a central converter so you can afford a really efficient one) if you're on street power, or there are two fewer conversions and almost no loss when you're running on battery.

As for a Prius, the efficiency in those is in the fact that you can have a much smaller engine (since the electric motor and the gasoline engine can "team up" when you need a lot of acceleration) and the gasoline motor doesn't need to run when the car is moving slowly or sitting still (the battery can drive the car most of the time, and regenerative braking can reclaim a good percentage of momentum and turn it back into battery charge, so the gas motor only comes on when the battery gets low or when more acceleration than the battery can provide is needed). It's more complicated, certainly, but the whole point is to use what power the gasoline engine is generating more efficiently by storing what's not immediately used and using it later.

more than 3 years ago
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University Switches To DC Workstations

natehoy Re:I think I speak for us all when I say "Huh???" (468 comments)

I wonder how much carbon was released refining all the lead in all those batteries...

You mean the batteries they'd need if they were running the thing off an AC-based UPS, only they need fewer of them because the power stored in them can be used directly by the computers rather than running it though a DC-to-AC conversion then back through an AC-to-DC conversion in order to power the computers?

The point here is increased efficiency, not some magical faerie dust that makes the system 100% efficient.

more than 3 years ago
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University Switches To DC Workstations

natehoy Re:secure? (468 comments)

If you have a UPS, you're going to need to change battery packs on the same interval regardless. The point here is that the computers could use the DC battery pretty much directly in a backup power situation, as opposed to the additional complexity of an AC-to-DC to charge the battery, a DC-to-AC to power the 120VAC power plug into the computer, and an additional AC-to-DC inside the computer itself. That's a whole lot of inefficient conversions, and a whole lot of extra bits that could go wrong.

Putting fewer bits in the system almost always increases reliability. Once you've converted to DC, you have battery charge and computer usage all on the DC side. It's not only more efficient, it's probably going to be more reliable.

more than 3 years ago
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The Hobbit Finally Starts Shooting

natehoy Re:Smaug won't be in it (233 comments)

Arwen and Aragorn were a love interest in the original books, it just wasn't hammered into the reader every page or two like the movies felt it necessary to do in nearly every scene. It was actually kinda important to the theme, but cutting half the "mystical connection through the crystal faerie" dream sequences could have left room for Bombadil or the enslavement of the Shire.

  There was also the love interest between Sam and Rosie, which I think was handled pretty well in the movies (though in the books it was an additional bit of suspense in the enslavement of the Shire, so there wasn't a whole lot of point covering it except to give Sam a strong reason not to want to leave, and demonstrate how strong his character is).

But no, I don't recall any love interest in The Hobbit other than maybe something about Bard (the archer who kills Smaug). I think he was either married or had the village women mooning over him or something. But it was not a major plot device. If nothing else, that archer could have a love interest created for him out of whole cloth without mucking up the central plot too terribly much, as long as they don't make it too important (his wife is imprisoned by Smaug or something?).

more than 3 years ago
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The Hobbit Finally Starts Shooting

natehoy Re:Smaug won't be in it (233 comments)

Given "The Two Towers: The Battle For Helm's Deep - A Love Story", I sincerely doubt the Battle of Five Armies is going to get cut. It's all the stuff about a ring and stuff that's going to get cut instead, and replaced with a few love interests and extra footage of the Battle of Five Armies. The extended version might add back in a few piffling details, like Gollum and the Ring, etc..

I'm very much looking forward to The Hobbit done as a movie, I'm sure it'll be very good (especially considering the previous attempts to film The Hobbit, but you could watch Silent Running and call it a remake of The Hobbit and it would work better than the previous attempts), but I share your irkage in Jackson's selection of scenes. I just think his focus is going to be the opposite of what you suggest - the violent bits will certainly be taking center stage.

more than 3 years ago
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AT&T Cracking Down On Unofficial iPhone Tethering

natehoy Re:USA #1 (513 comments)

Additionally any phone you do get is locked to the carrier you are on, and some carriers go so far as to refuse you service if you don't take one of their phones.

It depends. I have service with AT&T and we bought an unlocked phone because her original AT&T-issued phone just wasn't to her liking. We simply took the GSM chip out of her old phone, plugged it into her new phone, and Bob's your uncle. Worked great. No need to contact AT&T, and no need for a data plan at all since the unlocked phone has WiFi and AT&T can't stop us from using it (and my wife is OK with only having data at home and saving $25+ a month).

Of course, we still don't get a discount, but at least once her contract is up we'll go month-to-month (and you can do that from the get-go with "bring your own device").

It's even got a slot for a second SIM chip should we ever decide to get a data plan elsewhere.

You CAN separate the carrier from the phone, if you buy the phone first and choose a carrier that allows

more than 3 years ago
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AT&T Cracking Down On Unofficial iPhone Tethering

natehoy Re:USA #1 (513 comments)

StraightTalk does not, no. And it's unfortunate, because their pricing is actually relatively good, but you're locked into their (relatively limited) selection of phones. My father signed up for them last month, and other than a few minor quibbles he's saving a good chunk of money on his cell plan, and has more minutes and data than he knows what to do with. And if he gets sick of them, he's not under a contract (of course, he's paid basically retail for the phone, so there's no reason for him to be under contract - he basically paid the ETF up front).

I'm still looking for a "bring your own phone" GSM plan with good pricing. I had hopes for StraightTalk, but they don't do bring-your-own.

My wife's AT&T plan is up soon, and we're already using an unlocked Nokia MusicExpress on her plan because her original phone didn't meet her needs. Her parents, on the same plan, were forced into buying new phones two months ago when AT&T made a service change that rendered their 18-month-old phones (that AT&T provided) incompatible with AT&T's towers. AT&T tried to get them to sign up for an additional two years in return for free phones, but I bought them both unlocked $40 GSM handsets to avoid the forced renewal.

So we're all done with subsidized phones, they aren't worth it.

more than 3 years ago
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Potentially Great Sci-fi Films Still Due In 2011

natehoy Re:Ringworld... (342 comments)

"The Moon is a Harsh Mistress" is a great story, but I'm struggling with how well it would translate into anything resembling an interesting movie that people would actually pay to watch, and still be the slightest bit true to a story about a computer becoming self-aware while outcasts are trying to split from their oppressive overlords. There are scenes that would translate well (bombing the Earth with rocks), but Hollywood would latch on to those scenes and you'd end up with something akin to "The Two Towers" becoming "The Battle for Helms Deep: A Love Story".

Ringworld, on the other hand, is a special-effects masterpiece waiting to happen. The storyline is simple, the beauty of the story is visualizing the engineering involved, and that would translate with really good (but horribly expensive) visual effects. I don't know if you'd ever get enough viewership to justify effects at that scope, though.

more than 3 years ago
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Intelsat To Start Refueling Satellites In Orbit

natehoy Re:How much per gallon? (79 comments)

Yes, let's drop these silly regulations like the law of gravity and let the free market decide what the gravitational pull should be!

more than 3 years ago

Submissions

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Author drops copyright case against Scribd filter.

natehoy natehoy writes  |  about 4 years ago

natehoy (1608657) writes "Apparently, monitoring for copyright violations is not in itself a copyright violation, lawyers for Elaine Scott decided. As a result, they have dropped the lawsuit against Scribd, who was being simultaneously sued for allowing copies of Scott's work to be published, and retaining an unlicensed copy of the work in their filtering software to try and prevent future copyright violations."
Link to Original Source
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Patch Tuesday November: 6 Bulletins for 15 flaws

natehoy natehoy writes  |  more than 4 years ago

natehoy (1608657) writes "Microsoft plans six bulletins next Tuesday, four of them for Windows and two for Office. The remaining will be for Office. Of the Windows bulletins, three will be marked Critical.

Some of the patches include corrections to patches released in October. October, many will recall, was a big month for patches. Apparently a few bugs were found in some of them.

November will not include a patch for the flaw in SSL that's been getting some press lately."

Link to Original Source
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Verizon to double Smartphone Early Termination Fee

natehoy natehoy writes  |  more than 4 years ago

natehoy (1608657) writes "Like having a subsidized phone? Beware, there's a possible sea change ahead.

Verizon has decided that $175 isn't recovering all of their costs on early contract cancels for subsidized smartphones and netbooks. They are changing their ETF from a prorated $175 to $350. The ETF will decrease $10 per month during the life of the contract, so after three years the phone is paid for.

This effectively means that Verizon is offering two-year contracts but requiring a three-year commitment of their subsidized smartphone customers. If, after two years, you don't like the way their new contract offering reads, you've got $110 remaining on your ETF.

Change will take effect starting with purchases made on or after November 15, so if you've a hankering for that Verizon smartphone or netbook, you have a few days left before the change.

It'll be interesting to see if the other mobile companies follow suit."

Link to Original Source
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Obesity accelerates brain aging?

natehoy natehoy writes  |  more than 4 years ago

natehoy (1608657) writes "According to the US News and World Report, a recent study has shown a link between obesity and the loss of neurological tissue. The brains in elderly patients who were obese had an average of 8% less brain tissue than their trimmer counterparts. Overweight patients suffered about half the impact, or 4%.

This could have implications for the onset of dementia illnesses such as Alzheimer's. Just one more risk factor to add to the growing body (no pun intended) of reasons to try and stay trim."

Link to Original Source

Journals

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Journal?

natehoy natehoy writes  |  more than 4 years ago

In this, my first journal entry, I find I have little of import to say.

It's been interesting experimenting with Slashdot so far. I've managed to be "friended" based on a comment that may or may not deserve that privilege, and "foed" based on a post that I thought was useful and contained good information but earned me some swearing from the person who obviously disagreed with something. The person declined to state exactly what they disagreed with, other than accusing me of "mod whoring" (which may be a valid gripe - I responded to basically the same question in three separate portions of the discussion area, not realizing that may be a faux pas here).

Some decent news here on the site, and some interesting content and unique people. I'm a member of a couple of online communities where I've been chatting with people I'll never meet since mid-2000. I don't see that sort of rapport developing here, given that stories tend to come and go, but I haven't really explored the journal/friend/foe thing yet. Maybe there is a community to be found, and not just an ongoing discussion of randomly-selected current events.

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