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Microsoft Patent Deems Comic Books Shameful

shawb Re:People associate it wrongly (209 comments)

Unfortunately, prospective employers tend to judge you before they meet you. It's kind of their job.

Even though Microsoft used comic books as an example, finding another comic book geek isn't going to be the use of this method... it's going to be used to find someone with a compatible sexual fetish. That information definitely does not need to be available to employers, coworkers, family, etc unless you choose to make it so.

more than 3 years ago
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DNA samples should be on record for...

shawb Re:Not saying I don't care...but... (316 comments)

Right, and those areas with high levels of polymorphism tend to be non-coding DNA almost by definition.

more than 3 years ago
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Text Messages To Replace Stamps In Sweden

shawb Re:Good luck with that (249 comments)

At that point you just pre-print the postage right on the envelope, and pay for it when buying envelopes.

more than 3 years ago
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Text Messages To Replace Stamps In Sweden

shawb Re:Good luck with that (249 comments)

You really think someone is going to spend the effort and legal liability of cracking a government code just to save $4 on 10 letters? Especially once people start getting denied because the same person sent out 10 letters over and over. Besides... easy fix. Put the address you are sending to in the message, keep that in a database and compare once the letter actually comes in.

more than 3 years ago
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Senate Passes Landmark Patent Reform Bill

shawb Re:Does not Affect Prior Art Doctrine (362 comments)

Which, in theory, should be somewhat alleviated by the patent office now holding on to the license fees rather than passing them on to patch the general budget. Well, unless corruption is actually one of the largest driving factors. Which, having worked in a beaurocracy, I highly doubt.

more than 3 years ago
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Researchers Turn To Silk For Flexible E-Devices

shawb Re:Solid slurm ? (35 comments)

Depends on your definition of low cost. If you are comparing it to cotton, then it's moderately pricey. If you are comparing it to carbon nanotubes... then it's an outright bargain.

more than 3 years ago
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Gosper's Algorithm Meets Wall Street Formulas

shawb Re:Probability Theory began with games of chance. (124 comments)

I'll put it this way... Wall Street does more gambling than Las Vegas Blvd: at least the casinos know the odds, and don't bet unless they are in their favor.

more than 3 years ago
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The Decline and Fall of System Administration

shawb Re:Clone my car! (500 comments)

The real solution? Reimage the production server to just get it working, then you dig around on the dev server until you find out what's actually going on.

more than 3 years ago
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Can the Atrix 4G Really Become Your Next PC?

shawb Re:Price of mobile data (297 comments)

I was thinking Wi-Fi

Didn't get that far... I get really annoyed by articles that are split into pages just to get more ad hits.

more than 3 years ago
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Can the Atrix 4G Really Become Your Next PC?

shawb Re:Get a USB hub (297 comments)

Or leave the dock right by the monitor, and use a wireless keyboard and mouse. Basically just agreeing with you: this is a problem that has already been solved. In many ways. The Evo 4G already has HDMI out, and with a customized USB hub could run just about any peripheral needed for consumer purposes while recharging the phone. Storage? just use the cloud. How much space do you need in a consumer device now that media is generally streamed? Of course the software and OS probably aren't quite there for getting it to run smoothly, but that's just a matter of time.

Real work will still probably be done on a traditional desktop or laptop for some time now, but that's a different story. Anyways, the future probably isn't so much with a dock that allows for bigger and better I/O as it is a way to connect the smartphone to the PC so the actual run state of a program can be shifted from one device to another similar to dragging a window between screens of a multi monitor setup. This would take a revolution in the way DRM is handled, probably something along the lines of cloud computing with the PC and phone acting as thin clients. Unless the economy crashes and noone can afford it.

more than 3 years ago
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Can the Atrix 4G Really Become Your Next PC?

shawb Re:Can it run my Steam games? (297 comments)

The last games I have heard people in the real world talking about are Angry Birds, Plants vs Zombies and the Android port of Vendetta. While PC gaming isn't going to absolutely go away anytime soon, I don't foresee it being a growth market. We are probably at the point where new PC gaming studios will open only as fast as old ones close or are absorbed into behemoths like EA. New creative indie gamers are mostly going to be doing their first games for cell phones as a pervasive distribution system with modest pricing schemes is now integral to the experience.

To anyone who disagrees: what is the last new genre of video game that is largely installed (by installed I mean not played in the browser) on PCs? PC gaming is pretty much dominated by FPS, roleplaying, life sim and RTS/TBS. All genres that were pretty well codified in the '90s, with changes since then largely being evolutionary rather than revolutionary, or of the "but on the INTERNET!" variety.

To put it in numbers, Angry Birds has 50 million shipped, which is more than three times as many as the biggest selling PC game The Sims at 16 Million. Wii has 7 games that sold better than The Sims. The DS has 5 games that sold better than The Sims.

So no, PC gaming probably isn't going to go away for a bit. On the other hand, it really isn't going anywhere at all.

more than 3 years ago
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Meteorites Brought Ingredients of Life To Earth

shawb Re:Panspermia (199 comments)

This is far from panspermia. That is the theory that life itself came from space. This is just saying that Nitrogen is brought to the earth by meteorites.

Really, this should just be one big "duh" to anyone who has read up on theory of planetary formation. Basically, the whole planet is made up of meteorites that crashed together. And maybe a couple times it was large aggregations of meteorites that collided into the growing mass, and even small planetoid bodies such as the event that is theorized to have created the moon. But those planetoid bodies were made by the collisions of numerous meteors, dust particles, etc.

more than 3 years ago
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HarperCollins Wants Library EBooks to Self-Destruct After 26 Loans

shawb Re:look elsewhere (181 comments)

We'll see what happens now that librarians are going to effectively be making 8k less a year.

more than 3 years ago
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HarperCollins Wants Library EBooks to Self-Destruct After 26 Loans

shawb Re:What *exactly* do ebook publishers do? (181 comments)

One of the big things is probably marketing. I imagine most ebooks also have a dead tree version, and getting shelf space for those is quite difficult without a publisher behind you. Even in the digital world, letting people who would actually read the book to do so can take some effort and skills that an author doesn't necessarily have. Once an authors name is out there, sure... then they can sell books. Which is why publishers often sign multi book deals... for an insurance of ROI.

more than 3 years ago
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First Ever HIPAA Fine Is $4.3M

shawb Re:More to come? (197 comments)

It can even be considered a violation if a medical professional recognizes and initiates conversation with a patient outside of work. It's fine if the patient initiates conversation, but merely letting those around the patient know that you are a patient by coming and and saying "Hi!" can be a violation. However, I did hear this from people who work in more sensitive, potentially embarrassing fields; the risk of a friendly conversation being triggered as a violation is probably much greater from a proctologist or STD clinic worker than a family practice physician.

more than 2 years ago
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Study Calls Craigslist 'a Cesspool of Crime'

shawb Re:misunderstandings (316 comments)

Even worse than that: Craigslist is the competitor of their customers.

more than 3 years ago
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Talking To Computers?

shawb Re:Annoying as hell (395 comments)

Yes, current voice based menus suck. I have no idea why they don't have a fallback to pressing numbers feature.

There's numerous use cases that I can think of beyond complying with the ADA. Getting a recipe while your hands are damp or covered in flour. Getting information while working under a car. A surgeon operating a computer while scrubbed in. Reading the serial number from the back of a computer out loud rather than memorizing a couple numbers, typing those in, remembering a couple more, going back and writing the whole thing down to find out where you messed up...

I can also think of numerous use cases where relying solely on speech recognition would be a terrible choice... in an office, loud working environment (factory, war zone, airport tarmac...) quiet working environment (library, recording studio, nature observation... and of course: espionage.)

more than 3 years ago

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