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Drones Could 3D-Map Scores of Hectares of Land In Just a Few Hours

rgbscan Re:FAA is not allowing Drone use in farming today (91 comments)

According to court rulings, you actually own the first 83 feet. The most famous case of this kind comes from 1945 when a chicken farmer named Thomas Lee Causby sued the US government for flying approximately 83 feet above his property, the noise of which caused a bunch of Causby’s chicken’s to accidentally kill themselves by running into walls. Causby won his case and the courts agreed that although a property owner wasn’t entitled to own all of the air above their land, they were entitled to enough so that planes flying overhead wouldn’t kill their chickens.

As the FAA considers 500 feet and below non-navigational space, it has been assumed that you own that too, but that part has never been tried in court, and you can't count on it.


Automation Coming To Restaurants, But Not Because of Minimum Wage Hikes

rgbscan Re:Right along side flying cars (712 comments)

Mmmmm. Nootropic smoothie. I've got to re-read some Mondo 2000 sometime.

5 days ago

FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

rgbscan Re:Is it legal to make code compatible alternative (697 comments)

My $3 generic eBay FTDI clone USB->Serial cable (that I bought to program my Baofeng radio via Chirp) came with no drivers and Windows pulled down the real FTDI driver. Over the summer, it only worked sporadically. Usually didn't work. Swapping out the cable for a $12 legit cable from Trendnet solved all issues. It isn't just that these chinese places are making a clone, it's that they are making a crappy sort-of compatible clone and passing it off as the real thing, and directing you to use the FTDI drivers. It totally makes FTDI look bad. I didn't find out until after researching with some guys from chirp that my cable was a knock off. I thought I was buying a supported chipset. Might not be legal or ethical, but I'm all for anything that stops these crappy chinese cloners in their tracks. I spent way too much time and hassle on a problem they caused.

about a week ago

Apple Announces iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3, OS X Yosemite and More

rgbscan Re: Apple Pay (355 comments)

There's the tokenization too. Instead of using your card number, you get a one-time use number for that transaction from your bank to process that transaction.

about two weeks ago

Apple Announces iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3, OS X Yosemite and More

rgbscan Re:Maybe a Mini (355 comments)

Didn't even need the paint scraper if you had a kitchen spatula :-)

I even did the dual deck CD to SSD upgrade with the special tray on my '09 mini.

about two weeks ago

The Subtle Developer Exodus From the Mac App Store

rgbscan Re:Is there an exodus? (229 comments)

Agreed, of the linked articles... one is a blog entry from 2012 predicting the end of the app store without really anything concrete to say - just opinions, and one is from a developer who acknowledges that Apple gave them personalized help above and beyond the call of duty, and admitted that their app was a "worst case scenario" for sandboxing, and they are shipping outside of the MAS due to time constraints rather than solve the remaining sandboxing issues. Both are hardly damning of the app store.

about two weeks ago

Goodbye, World? 5 Languages That Might Not Be Long For This World

rgbscan Re:Thinking back to my undergraduate days (late 70 (547 comments)

I still hack around in Pascal from time to time. Kyan Pascal produces good results on my Apple IIe when I'm in the mood, and I dink around on System 7 from time to time on my old Quadra and all the libraries and toolkits for the Mac from back then are better supported in Pascal.

I don't think it has any practical use nowadays, even with Lazarus out there, but it's still fun if you're into the vintage scene.

about three weeks ago

Why Do Contextual Ads Fail?

rgbscan Re:Huh (249 comments)

These are the only ads I still see. I can't seem to get rid of them on youtube. And let me tell you, they are crazy off the mark. I think I've finally done enough random clicking on stuff that they can't possibly pigeon hole me. I routinely get this ad with a gay couple (white guy and asian guy) drawing hearts in a steamy bathroom before I can click skip (something about AIDS testing), the others I routinely get are a crazy panic truther ad about flouride in our drinking water, an ad about something for kids learning (some baby einstein knockoff product), and some country music band.

So apparently I'm some crazy chemtrail believin', flouride drinking, country boy, worried about AIDS with my asian partner, while shopping for baby goods.

Yep, the random clicky's have Google thoroughly confused. Proud moment :-)

about three weeks ago

Ask Slashdot: Multimedia-Based Wiki For Learning and Business Procedures?

rgbscan Re:Sound like Moodle might be a better fit (97 comments)

Heck no. As someone forced to use Moodle by college it is hands down the crappiest e-learning platform I've ever had to deal with. Even worse than blackboard. All those other MOOC's do pretty well, and I happen to love the interface Udemy provides, but for heaven's sakes don't torture people with Moodle. The *ONLY* thing it has going for itself is that it's free.

about a month ago

The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

rgbscan Re:LEDs (602 comments)

Agreed. It would be nice to see accurate independent ratings.

I've got a handful of CFL's from Ikea I bought in 2005. It started off as a 12 pack. 1 died right away out of the gate, 2 died in exterior fixtures (front door and back door lamps on motion detectors - they didn't like the MN winter). The rest, that have been inside on standard light switch applications, are still happily chugging along. I even took them with me when I moved :-)

I got a 3 pack of LED lights to play with about a year ago from Feit. No problems with those, although it's still too early to tell how I'll fare. The light is a little more directional than the CFLs but I like the color temp better.

about a month ago

Appeals Court Clears Yelp of Extortion Claims

rgbscan Re:The obvious solution... (63 comments)

As someone with quite a bit of Yelp experience, the filter doesn't just filter out people with a single bad review, it also looks at the distribution of the sum of all the reviews on that account. Generally, over time with enough reviews, each user generally falls into a similar pattern systemwide with a pretty regular curve of rating scores distributed over the reviews. Anything deviating from that curve more than 'x' amount gets filtered (it's secret so you can't game it). It's pretty pronounced and predictable - so the sourpusses that leave nothing but bad reviews get filtered no matter how many they write. Same with the people that leave nothing but glowing reviews.

In my personal experience, the small businesses claiming that Yelp or a competitor are targeting them with bad reviews are full of it. I just go look up their BBB score and almost always see the same types of complaints against the business there. There generally is agreement between a trip advisor rating and a yelp score as well. Sometimes its hard for people to look at their operation and realize they truly do suck. You see it all the time on those reality shows called "Kitchen Disasters" or "Save my Restaurant" with that foreign chap from Hell's Kitchen. They always think they are rock stars and have no idea why their business is failing when dude shows up.

I have yet to come across a business with multiple well-written (a couple of paragraphs with concrete examples) bad reviews that were legitimately attacks and falsehoods made up by competitors. Granted it's possible, but in my multiple years as a yelper "elite" and with the ~500 or so reviews I've written, I haven't seen it. When people take the time to leave lengthy negative reviews, they are usually legit.

about 2 months ago

Student Bookstores Beware, Amazon Comes To Purdue Campus

rgbscan Re:Well (95 comments)

I always buy a used book from Amazon. Anyone paying full sticker at the campus book store is getting robbed. Last years edition is almost always fine (unless the instructor is using the accompanying courseware - but generally my school has stayed away from that). The ebooks especially are a bad deal since you just rent them and can't re-sell them.

For my statistics class this fall the text is: Statistical Techniques in Business and Economics 16th Edition, ISBN 0078020522. $292 at the campus bookstore, $248 new at Amazon, $227 used at Amazon. Previous edition (15e - approved by Instructor) used at Amazon? $44 bucks.

I've done this through all 4 years of school and am about to graduate. Only twice did I have instructors require the on-line courseware. At $100 bucks a pop, it was still cheaper just to buy the code by itself and go with the older edition book.

about 3 months ago

With Chinese Investment, Nicaraguan Passage Could Dwarf Panama Canal

rgbscan Re:Geography of panama vs nicaragua (322 comments)

As the lake is above sea level, apparently (IANA Civil Engineer) this will keep the salt out as the lake will just drain to the sea. Apparently. This is what the construction propaganda says anyway.

about 3 months ago

Is the App Store Broken?

rgbscan Re:People expecting their marketing for free (258 comments)

Plenty of iOS apps do a trial period. I've had apps that limit the functionality after 30 days unless you pay in-app to unlock it. I've had photo apps that allow you to use all the filters for free for 'x' number of pictures to sample them and then you had to in-app purchase them to keep using them. And just last night I downloaded Revolution 60 (excellent game BTW) and you get the whole game but there's a countdown timer. After an hour of playtime you have to pay for it via in-app purchase or it stops working and won't read your save file.

about 3 months ago

The Oculus Rift DK2: In-Depth Review (and Comparison To DK1)

rgbscan Re:When does the consumer version actual arrive? (54 comments)

I don't know, it's ultimately Sony vs Facebook here. It's really more of a lesser of two evils type of thing....

about 3 months ago

My most recent energy-saving bulbs last ...

rgbscan Going since '06 (278 comments)

I have 4 Ikea CFL's from 2006 still going strong (out of a 6 pack, the other two went outside on the front and back door and died a horrible immediate death in a motion light). I also have a LED bulb from 2010 in constant use working well. I have a handful more sitting in a package that I can't use because the ceiling fan is on a dimmer. I don't know if I'll ever get to them.

about 4 months ago

Climate Change Skeptic Group Must Pay Damages To UVA, Michael Mann

rgbscan Re:"Thus ends "Climategate." Hopefully." (497 comments)

I didn't really mean to yell at you. I was characterizing the fervor of the blog you linked.

If you feel it was sloppy, that 's the great thing about peer reviewed science. You are welcome to re-do it yourself. This was a simple study, with an easy to understand methodology, so I'm not sure what you find "sloppy". Please do elaborate.

Repeat the experiment yourself.....

Step 1) Researchers made a list of scientific papers from peer reviewed journals that search keywords found to match something about climate change. 11,000-12,000 of them. Here is the raw data (the one that your linked blog said the Norwegian scientist just couldn't somehow get his hands on, no matter how hard he tried or emailed, that your blog implied was a coverup).

Step 2) Review and determine if the paper takes a stand on global warming. Exclude the papers that do not. (Since the whole point of this experiment is to determine that percentage of papers for or against AGW)

Step 3) Determine the percentages of the remaining papers. Are they for or against? Publish result.

All this other stuff you and the blog bring up... is it dangerous? how much is man made? etc, etc is outside the scope of the study. The point of *this* one particular study is to find out what percentage of published, peer reviewed papers, attribute AGW to man made causes. Coming up with the "consensus" of scientists. If you have other questions, look to other research, but don't knock this paper or setup straw man arguments based on something it's not. That's just shady.

about 4 months ago


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