Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!



Why Online Privacy Is Broken

rockhome Privacy is a myth (220 comments)

People like to make so much of the Internet into an analog of the so called "digital town square". The irony is, in the town square, everybody can see you and know who you are.

Many are up in arms about "online privacy" forgetting that what they are really trying to do is make something that is essentially public private.
I've never been under the impression that anything I access via a web browser or other network service is anything but public. I've never trusted that Google or anyone else would protect my data and I don't create Internet artifacts that would embarrass me.

Look, would go around your neighborhood asking people about strange fetishes, your strange wart, or about anything else that you'd prefer people not know about you? No.
So why expect that every piece of information that you put on the Internet should be so guarded?

more than 4 years ago

Adobe Calls Out Apple With Ads In NY Times, WSJ

rockhome So Adobe is mad at Apple for making products that (731 comments)

I couldn't view every page in every browser on every device before the iPhone or iPad, so how am I limited?

This isn't about freedom, it's about a market choice. People have bought the iPhone and iPad in droves and have said, more or less, that the devices are compelling enough to buy even without Flash support.

Apple doesn't have anywhere close to a monopoly in the mobile device space, so I don't understand the problem.
Someone enlighten me please.

more than 4 years ago

Geek Travel To London From the US — Tips?

rockhome British Museum == Boring (1095 comments)

Aside from the Rosetta Stone, the British Museum isn't really that interesting.

Churchill's War Rooms, The Tate Modern, and the Royal Observatory and Greenwhich are far more interesting.
Also, don't forget to day trip to Bletchley Park.

The British Museum just doesn't have anything very interesting.

more than 5 years ago

Google Releases Source To Chromium OS

rockhome Interesting, blantantly stupid sentance (664 comments)

In reference to people being concerned that they'd lose access to data if their internet connection were down:
'"If your cloud is down it affects any computer you're on," he said. "I'd like to see a comparison of the cloud with what you have today. I think the cloud will compare very, very favourably[sic]."'

Um, no. If my "cloud" is down, i.e., my internet connection, my laptop or desktop can still run everything. I can still work on my visio diagram, I can still listen to music, I can still do my taxes.
I can do all of that because the bleeding data that I need is on the damn machine.

Not to mention, why would I EVER entrust any corporation to safeguard or ethically use any data that I store on their "cloud"?
Can I create my own 'local' "cloud"? What will the EULA terms be? Can Google decide to start digging through your data to send advertisers your way?
Does Google now own the data?

Pressing questions.

more than 5 years ago

Verizon Droid Tethering Comes At a Hefty Price

rockhome I'm confused (555 comments)

I have a "smartphone" in large part because I want to be able to access certain information and tools without having to lug a laptop around.

I've always wondered why I would want to tether my laptop to my phone. It seems to me that my phone, an iPhone in my case, allows me to use a browser, access my email, and get maps and directions, so why do I want to tether my laptop?

Every use case that I can think of places me someplace where I can get some kind of WiFi, which would be cheaper and faster.

I don't know, maybe I just don't need to be connected to everything all the time, in every way possible.

more than 5 years ago

So Amazing, So Illegal

rockhome Isn't this a bit pedestrian? (492 comments)

I've never understood what is so novel and interesting about someone taking bits of other people's music and making something of their "own" out of it.

Isn't it just another kind of kindergarten style collage that isn't really original? This is like an author constructing a novel out of pieces of other works, there's nothing new or innovative about it.

What happens when we run out of original material to "mashup"? Will we then get mashups of mashups? It is a terribly proletarian "art" if you can even call it that. If you have that kind of talent and ambition, why not create truly original music?

more than 5 years ago

Gamer Claims Identifying As a Lesbian Led To Xbox Live Ban

rockhome More info requested (1182 comments)

This is the type of reactionary /. story that I love. Somebody posts about a one-sided post about some possibly egregious policy of some company.

What we don't have is comment from the other side, either in the form of email or direct comment from the company in question. The XBox Live contract forbids the use of offensive terms. Are terms like lesbian and gay themselves offensive? No, but there is no way to have apply a policy automatically and have it understand context, so sexxylesbian69 would be singled as would WellAdjustedLesbian8. I'd like to see a response from Microsoft on the actual policy.

Do they automatically suspend accounts with "offending" tags and then reinstate them when the user can clarify the use? I don't know, the article doesn't tell me. In this example, there is likely some bad customer service, the CSR might not understand the policy and might just be quoting the only thing they know. Those who believe they have been wronged ought to push to have the call escalated to a supervisor who might be able to fully explain the policy and actually help.

It would be nice if the linked article were actually a piece of "journalism rather than another opportunity to prove how bad Microsoft is, even though we still by their products.

more than 5 years ago

Apple Claims That Jail-Breaking Is Illegal

rockhome And there goes Apple getting free publicity and mo (610 comments)

I am always amazed at how the sheep bleat against the kinds of things that Apple and other companies do, only to see those companies policies remain unchanged and their sales go up.

Really, it is a complete joke to see groups like the EFF engage in this kind of action when it really only gives the companies they attack free publicity. As long as there is demand for the iPhone and growth in the marketplace, Apple has no reason to change their behavior, it is as simple as that. If they time their response to lawsuits and the aggressiveness of the their response, they will only gain more customers, perhaps many interested in thumbing their nose at Apple and jailbreaking the phone.

The only reason that Apple is making any argument against jailbreaking is to appear to the mobile carriers that they are doing something to prevent possible security violations. When there is incremental revenue available from jailbreaking, Apple will change its tune.

more than 5 years ago

2 Finds Add To Giant Earthworm Science In Northwest

rockhome Did they use maker hooks? (39 comments)

Did they use maker hooks to capture the worms?

Are these just little makers?

more than 6 years ago


rockhome hasn't submitted any stories.



Cell Phone Interference on planes - legitimate?

rockhome rockhome writes  |  more than 7 years ago

For a long time I have been convinced that there wouldn't be a real problem with people using their mobile phones in airplanes. Figuring that wiring ought to properly insulated and frequencies not necessarily interfering between plane and ground communications, I'd have figured we were safe. A discovery that I made yesterday made me not so sure.

Yesterday, as I was at work, I was listening to my iPod when, suddenly, the volume leaped for no apparrent reason. I thought that it might be the audio file itself, so I rewound and did not experiece the same phenomenon. Later, it happened again, and this time I noticed that the screen had become active (I have the backlight set to 5 seconds) showing the increased volume bar. A few moments later it happened again, this time the volume went lower.

After this third occurence, I had made a correlation between cause and effect. My Blackberry was sitting a few inches from the iPod and on the third occurence of this "problem" I noticed that it had happened at the same time that I sent an email through the Exchange web client, causing the Blackberry to sync with the sent message. At that time, my headphones had experienced the tell-tale interference of GPRS data commnuications, the stuttering and popping we are all used to hearing through desk phones.

After this discovery, it makes me wonder how wide spread the effect could be. Could I develop a device that would send a burst in the direction of a nearby iPod and cause it stop playing, change songs, or change the volume? A bigger question to ask is what are the possible effects in a plane were the FTC and FAA to allow airborne phone use? Could my email to a colleague telling him that he sucks cause feedback into the PA system resulting in lost communication between the pilot and the ground?

My assumtion, after some VERY scientific, technical research and testing, is that the effect on the ipod occurs throught the head phones and not the device itself. Since the headphone jack is also the plug for a remote control, I'd guess that the interference that occurs from the phone is at the same frequencies as the iPod remote's control queues. I'd be interested to know if other's have experienced this, or if I've just got rubbish headphones.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?