×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

Atlanta Gambled With Winter Storm and Lost

sgtrock Re:I grew up in Atlanta... (723 comments)

While it may be counterintuitive, my experience has been that using engine braking is generally more forgiving than the traditional brakes. For me, it's a lot easier to manage the friction coefficient with the engine than the brakes because braking force tends to be much more binary in nature. When slippery conditions exist, you're either on the brake pedal or you're not (although ABS helps here).

In fact, one reason that I really like a manual transmission is that manipulating the clutch and engine RPMs in combination with the transmission goes a long way toward getting just the right balance to slow down without losing traction. Newer computerized automatic trannies and engines do the same thing. So far, though, I haven't found a combination in a mass produced vehicle that does a very good job of it. Maybe we'll see some additional improvement in this space in the future.

about 2 months ago
top

Atlanta Gambled With Winter Storm and Lost

sgtrock Winter driving in the Twin Cities (723 comments)

I won't argue that most people in the Twin Cities with 4WD and AWD vehicles don't have a clue how to drive them. I've passed enough of them sitting forlornly in the ditch on Hwy 10 over the years! :-D

That said, though, we're not talking about the loose nuts behind the wheel but the inherent capabilities of the vehicles themselves. When I was living northeast of Elk River up near the Isanti-Anoka county line and commuting to the south side of St. Paul, I traded in the 2WD pickup for the 4WD and was glad that I did. The 4WD was MUCH better at handling deep snow, which in turn made using back roads as an alternative to jammed up freeways at least plausible. Engine braking with 4WD also made avoiding the idiots who were overdriving a lot easier. ;-)

We lived far enough out back then that about 1/3 of the drive home was well off the freeway, too. More than once I had to tackle the last 10 miles or so on unplowed county roads with up to a foot of snow on the road. I hated that stretch in my 2WD pickup. In those conditions the truck had a tendency to break traction even with 150 lbs of sand behind the rear wheels. BTW, I tried my wife's Saturn a couple of times but it wasn't much better as it was too low to the ground for the deep stuff.

Now that I'm living in Woodbury and commuting to Richfield, I no longer regard 4WD as a necessity. I never see more than the 4-6 inches of the white stuff that you mentioned. I sold off the 4WD pickup a couple of years ago and I'm driving a front wheel drive sedan. I still miss the extra traction of that old 4WD pickup, though.

My next vehicle is probably going to be a smaller SUV with a towing package. Something that I can get up to the lakes with, out in the woods hunting, and reasonable gas mileage. Now, if Tesla would simply build a 4WD vehicle with a decent range... Hey, a fella can dream, can't he? ;-)

about 3 months ago
top

Atlanta Gambled With Winter Storm and Lost

sgtrock Re:I grew up in Atlanta... (723 comments)

Don't even get me started on how unnecessary 4 wheel drive is, you can do 6+ inches of snow in 2 wheel drive just fine

With you so far...

and 4 wheel drive does nothing to help you stop any faster

Aaand this old fallacy shows up.

Look, I grew up in northern Minnesota and I have commuted to work in the Twin Cities for nearly 30 years. My commute these days is about 25 miles one way and used to be about 50. Trust me, I know driving in bad conditions. :-)

I've driven rear wheel drive mini-pickups, front wheel drive sedans, all wheel drive mini-SUVs, and a couple of 1/2 ton pickups (one two wheel drive, one 4 wheel). The little all wheel drive SUVs and the 4x4 were by FAR the best vehicles in snow for both acceleration and stopping.

You don't rely on just the brakes, use the engine. Downshift!. The extra braking force applied through the second axle can make all the difference.*

Granted, it's easier to manage with a manual transmission and clutch than an automatic. However, even the cheapest automatic tranny has at least one low gear below Drive. Use it!

*Note: Most vehicles are sold with open differentials so a two wheel drive is really a one wheel drive in bad conditions while a 4WD is really a 2WD. However, the extra axle not only means twice the force applied, but the force is applied on two different parts of the road surface. This can make all the difference in some circumstances.

about 3 months ago
top

Cameron's IP Advisor: Throw Persistent Copyright Infringers In Jail

sgtrock Re:Right idea, wrong amendment (263 comments)

Sigh. I'm on your side and you just don't know it. :-)

I suggest that you go back and re-read what you wrote initially, the 6th amendment, then go read Federalist Paper #84. The 9th and 10th amendments were added precisely to prevent the sort of misinterpretation that you were railing against in the first place. The courts had to rule the way that they did specifically because the 9th and 10 amendments were added. (Not that they haven't been trampled with every increasing frequency by judges who should know better.)

about 3 months ago
top

Cameron's IP Advisor: Throw Persistent Copyright Infringers In Jail

sgtrock Right idea, wrong amendment (263 comments)

Amendment IX
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

Why does everyone forget these two?

about 3 months ago
top

Losing Aaron

sgtrock Re:People in powerful places (199 comments)

First things first. Based upon what I've read elsewhere, it's still not clear that Aaron was guilty of ANY crime. A decent defense attorney might have been able to demonstrate that. Unfortunately, because Aaron couldn't afford decent counsel, the Federal prosecutor took the opportunity to just pile on lots of bogus charges to the few that were questionable to begin with in order to force him to take a plea deal.

Do the time? First you have to do the crime.

about 3 months ago
top

Ford Rolls the Dice With Breakthrough F-150 Aluminum Pickup Truck

sgtrock Re:And I Will Stop Buying... (521 comments)

Depends on where you want to go or do. 4WD isn't a necessity, but it sure is handy for getting in and out of the woods on unmaintained logging trails. Besides the obvious recreational value, there are times when it comes in handy for working, too. A buddy of mine and I used to split hauling duty when we went in to cut firewood, for example. We could get a lot more out with my '97 4WD fully loaded plus towing a loaded trailer than we could with his 2WD Dodge with automatic transmission. I think we figured that we were getting 6-7 cords with my vehicle vs. 2-4 with his.

I'm a HUGE believer in manual transmissions. Sadly, I don't think anyone is selling a 1/2 ton pickup or SUV with one any longer. Don't know what I'll do when it comes time to go car shopping again. :-(

about 4 months ago
top

Ford Rolls the Dice With Breakthrough F-150 Aluminum Pickup Truck

sgtrock Re:And I Will Stop Buying... (521 comments)

Let me guess: 2WD automatic transmission in the F150 and no weight behind the rear wheels, right? I'll grant you, one thing that Ford never got quite right was the gearing in their 2WD automatic truck trannies. Never enough torque when you needed it.

Also, let me ask. Did the Dakota come with a limited slip differential? The F150s that I owned didn't have one, although my dad's old 1970 Mustang did. Makes quite a difference in traction.

about 4 months ago
top

Ford Rolls the Dice With Breakthrough F-150 Aluminum Pickup Truck

sgtrock Sorry, embarrassing typo (521 comments)

I normally don't reply to myself, but I saw this right after I posted:

(250cc? not sure any more)

That should read 250ci (cubic inch).

about 4 months ago
top

Ford Rolls the Dice With Breakthrough F-150 Aluminum Pickup Truck

sgtrock Re:And I Will Stop Buying... (521 comments)

I know you're trolling because this is the second time that you posted this, but what the hell.

I live in Minnesota. I've never been a single manufacturer buyer. Over the past 30+ years my immediate family has owned Volkswagens, Toyotas, Mazdas, Saturns, Chevys, and yes, Fords. I've bought cars of all sizes as well as pickups.

To your complaints, the best vehicle that I ever owned in terms of both durability and its ability to avoid getting stuck in the snow was a 1997 F150 XLT 4x4 with the 4.6L V8 and standard 5 speed manual transmission (4 speed plus an overdrive gear). I only got the truck stuck so bad that I needed help getting out once when I dropped the front end into a really deep, narrow mud hole while 4 wheeling.

I drove that truck nearly 300,000 miles in 15 years. It never had an engine overhaul in all that time. I finally replaced the clutch at 275,000 miles and there was still some wear left on the clutch face. Rust didn't become an issue until right before I sold it.

I only sold the truck because we had two kids going off to college and needed to cut down on the number of vehicles sitting in the driveway. It was the oldest vehicle we had by about 6 years, sooo... There are times I still miss driving it, though.

The second most reliable vehicle that I owned was a 1987 F150 XLT 2 wheel drive with the big V6 (250cc? not sure any more) and manual 4 speed transmission (basically, a 3 speed with a low low "granny" gear for 1st). I drove that one for 10 years and well over 150,000 miles. Again, never had an overhaul or a new clutch. And again, rust was not an issue.

That one got stuck a little easier because of the lack of 4 wheel and the light ass end when it wasn't loaded. It was easy enough to compensate for, though. I just threw about 150 lbs behind each rear wheel well and didn't treat it as a 4x4. I can only recall getting stuck in it twice.

The first time was when my wife and I were out in the woods on an old, unmaintained logging trail. No big deal, really. She wanted a chance to drive it out there but didn't know how to read the ground. There was a wet patch where the road was really soggy and she drove into it instead of around it. :-) My fault for not realizing soon enough that she didn't see it.

The second was on an iced up 90 degree curve. There was a school bus and about a dozen cars and pickups off the road on both sides. I was only a 1/2 mile from home after a long commute, so I tried to squeak through at about 5 miles an hour. I literally slid off the road on the inside of the turn. Trust me, nobody was getting through that corner that night without 4 wheel drive, studs (illegal here), and/or a lot of luck. ;-)

Both vehicles handled snow pretty well, although the 4x4 was obviously far better with really deep snow. I commuted over 50 miles every day for a long time through some pretty nasty Minnesota blizzards. Never had a problem getting home in snow.

Ice, OTOH, is not a pickup's friend. You have so much mass that if you break traction you're going skating. NEVER overdrive your vehicle.

about 4 months ago
top

Officials Say HealthCare.gov Site Now Performing Well

sgtrock Gapminder (644 comments)

Gapminder's main site

Go ahead, check out the stats. By any measure, the US is NOT number one when it comes to health care and we spend a higher percentage of our GDP than everyone else for demonstrably poorer results.

about 4 months ago
top

Desert Farming Experiment Yields Good Initial Results

sgtrock Re:Economics (178 comments)

"We" already are starving and overpopulated**.

"we" are not. In fact, only a small portion of the world now faces starvation, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa.

The evidence so far strongly suggests that we now live in a "winner-take-all" world economy, where technological advances do not filter down and only serve to deepen the inequality both within a countries population and between countries.

Again, alarmist babble with little basis in fact. The truth is that the technological revolution of the last 200+ years has extended the average lifespan worldwide from around 30 in 1800 for most people to well over 70. Even the poorest people have seen average life expectancy go from 30 to about 60.

Is everyone where they need to be? No. But let's stop with the Chicken Little imatation, shall we, so we can concentrated on the remaining problems? This scientific research/engineering project is exploring one of those ways to extend benefits to exactly the groups that need it most. Why not just evaluate the feasibility of the project, both economic and environmental, on its own merits?

about 5 months ago
top

How Big Data Is Destroying the US Healthcare System

sgtrock Close.... (507 comments)

Our elected representatives live in a fantasy world where their votes are now bought and paid for legally. We are no longer their concern. It's all about the money.

"First you get the money, then you get the power, then you get the women." -- Tony Montana

about 6 months ago
top

How Kentucky Built the Country's Best ACA Exchange

sgtrock Re:Attn: Slashdot Socialists!! You Are Screwed. (333 comments)

Nevertheless, you get what you pay for and most Americans get healthcare which is higher-quality than that received by Europeans

That is simply not true. Life expectancy. Infant mortality. Deaths from burns. Drownings. Deaths from falls. Deaths from poison.

Pick any metric that you like and you'll see similar results. The reality is that the U.S. paying FAR more than virtually all other countries for health care and getting demonstrably poorer results than many, including most of Europe. (We're tied with the Marshall Islands with Tuvalu and Niue close behind. Everyone else spends far less than we do.)

Worse, if you set any of the graphs in motion it becomes blatantly clear that for the past several years, we have been spending ever more on health care and seeing next to no improvment. It's most blatantly obvious in the case of infant mortality but the same trend is clear for virtually all variables. Meanwhile, country after country following more 'socialist' models are seeing far better results from the dollars that they spend.

about 6 months ago
top

US Government Shutdown Ends

sgtrock Yeah, let's not let FACTS get in the way of a good (999 comments)

rant.

Life expectancy vs. % of GDP spent on health care.

Life expectancy vs. Government share of total health spending.

Tell me again why government funded health care is a bad idea? We get less for our health care than every other developed nation and pay far, FAR more than anyone else does. We are clearly doing something wrong. Maybe we ought to take a look at what works for a change instead of getting our 'facts' from Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilly.

about 6 months ago
top

Ask Author David Craddock About the Development of Diablo, Warcraft

sgtrock Re:Is F2P/P2W the future of gaming? (109 comments)

There are plenty of games out there that meet your criteria if you're willing to look around a bit. For example, just about Valve's entire catalog has consistently had plenty of new material included for free at later dates. Sometimes in addition to DLC that required a payment, sometimes not.

Tripwire Interactive does the same thing with the Red Orchestra series. They recently released an expansion to Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad that not only added a whole new campaign called Rising Storm based on the Pacific Theater, but also added several maps to HoS.

There are plenty of publishers out there with established track records for doing this kind of thing. Just look around a little.

about 6 months ago
top

CERN Launches Line Mode Browser Emulator

sgtrock Re: Keyboard sounds (92 comments)

It's only a whoosh when you've never had a senior help desk monkey tell you that. :-)

about 6 months ago
top

CERN Launches Line Mode Browser Emulator

sgtrock Re: Keyboard sounds (92 comments)

Speaking of Windows sounds: Ever hear a person say "h", "t", "t", "p", "colon", "slash", "slash", ... ?

FTFY ...What? Am I the only one who remembers which was designated which back when typewriters and terminals ruled the world? Just because Microsoft chose to confuse people yet again doesn't mean we should perpetuate the mistake! :-)

about 6 months ago
top

Apple Maps Flaw Sends Drivers Across Airport Runway

sgtrock Re:The real question is (311 comments)

From Wikipedia:

According to an estimate of 2011 the population of the city was 32,036

Ummm, yeah. We're talking about an awfully small city, here. I doubt that there's much of a security threat. Kids joyriding might be the worst, and why bother with the airport when there are thousands of square miles to go off-roading just outside of town?

about 7 months ago
top

Ballmer Admits Microsoft Whiffed Big-Time On Smartphones

sgtrock I'm sorta with you, but sorta not. (278 comments)

Personally, I think we'd be far, FAR better off if had a much more pluralistic, parliamentary structure instead of the false right-left dichomoty that has dominated American politics since the country was founded. We need flexibility in our governmental system, not some ossified, static monolith.

about 7 months ago

Submissions

top

Security Firm Confirms FOSS Devs Fix Bugs Faster

sgtrock sgtrock writes  |  more than 4 years ago

sgtrock (191182) writes "This story was reported in several places yesterday. From Dark Reading:

Around 58 percent of the applications tested by application security testing service provider Veracode in the past year-and-a-half failed to achieve a successful rating in their first round of testing. "The degree of failure to meet acceptable standards on first submission is astounding — and this is coming from folks who care enough to submit their software to our [application security testing] services," says Roger Oberg, senior vice president of marketing for Veracode. "The implication here is that more than half of all applications are susceptible to the kinds of vulnerabilities we saw at Heartland, Google, DoD, and others — these were all application-layer attacks."

...

"The conventional wisdom is that open source is risky. But open source was no worse than commercial software upon first submission. That's encouraging," Oberg says. And it was the quickest to remediate any flaws: "It took about 30 days to remediate open-source software, and much longer for commercial and internal projects," he says.

"

Link to Original Source

Journals

sgtrock has no journal entries.

Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...