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Ask Slashdot: Local Sync Options For Android Mobile To PC?

smi.james.th Bittorrent Sync (146 comments)

I use Bittorrent Sync very effectively for this... doesn't even require a server or anything. Pretty easy to set up on a PC.

about 5 months ago
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Giving GNOME 3 a GNOME 2 Look

smi.james.th Re:As someone who uses GNOME 3... (181 comments)

I was about to say, what about Cinnamon? I've never run into a shortcoming of Cinnamon, though I'll admit I'm not as much of a power-user as some.

1 year,13 days
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3D Printers For Peace Contest

smi.james.th Re:Easy answer (273 comments)

Or possibly sandals...

about a year ago
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The Dark Side of Amazon's New Pilots

smi.james.th Re:There is - it's called a Kindle Fire (312 comments)

I don't know about this. There's a Kindle android app. Also, I don't know how much of a profit they make on a Kindle fire. So there's that to consider...

about a year ago
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Valve Starts Publishing Packages For Its Own Linux Distribution

smi.james.th Re:Year of the Linux Desktop? (310 comments)

More pain. I can't be bothered with that, I prefer Linux to Windows, but I don't have a desperate need to use it. Most of what I need (Firefox, etc) runs natively on Windows, so there's no need to waste resources and virtualise a Linux box...

It's a pity you don't like it I guess. I think it was a bold move by Microsoft but most of the people I know who have been using it now actually like it. There are a couple that don't, and those that don't are computer literate enough to remove the things they don't like. Changes will never be universally liked I guess.

about a year ago
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Valve Starts Publishing Packages For Its Own Linux Distribution

smi.james.th Re:Year of the Linux Desktop? (310 comments)

Ja, the new task manager is pretty cool :)

As I mentioned though, if I had a choice I'm a Linux man, to me it just feels more comfortable, but since I need to use certain software for work and I don't like dual-booting, I stick with Windows. It's not as bad as it was historically. Each to their own though, it's a matter of opinion. And as I said, once you work around the start screen the Metro GUI almost disappears.

about a year ago
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Valve Starts Publishing Packages For Its Own Linux Distribution

smi.james.th Re:Year of the Linux Desktop? (310 comments)

What I did first thing was uninstall all the Metro-style apps, Mail, Music, etc. Stupid things insist on being full-screen. Goodbye to them. I installed all my own things, Firefox, Songbird, etc. They work like normal desktop apps. From there it looks exactly like a slightly slicker Win7 interface, except without a Start button. To get around that, as soon as I press the start button on the keyboard I just start typing the name of whatever I want and the search function takes away all the irrelevant stuff, so I can either press enter or click on it. My frequently used applications though I just pin to the taskbar exactly as I did with Win7,

Some features of Win8 I actually really like, for example the new, more informative copy dialog, and the ribbon at the top of Windows Explorer (I was one of those who liked the ribbon in Office). The start screen is a bit annoying but not enough to make my life miserable since I can exploit its features to get places faster. So all in all a positive experience.

about a year ago
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Valve Starts Publishing Packages For Its Own Linux Distribution

smi.james.th Re:Year of the Linux Desktop? (310 comments)

I've been sort of forced to use Win8 for the last few weeks on my new laptop (yeah I guess I could probably get it to work with 7 instead, but I'm too lazy...) and to be honest it's really not bad. Once you get used to the different interface it's really no problem.

Also, as far as marketplace lock-in, that's complete rubbish. I've installed all my own applications, haven't had to use a single one from the Windows / Metro thingy, most of the time I don't even realise I'm on a new OS. It's somewhat faster than Win7, though that difference isn't huge.

All that being said, I still prefer Linux, I'm one of those who have specific applications packages for work reasons which have to use Windows. But Win8 isn't the big loss for M$ that you make it out to be.

about a year ago
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Sarah Brightman's ISS Trip In Peril

smi.james.th Re:subject (105 comments)

Sarah Brightman isn't that bad... though I can think of several others I'd rather send into space.

about a year ago
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US To Deploy Ballistic Missile Interceptors In Response To North Korean Threats

smi.james.th One word: (266 comments)

China. They're big allies of North Korea, and I don't think they'd take kindly to America having significant military presence right there.

about a year ago
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US To Deploy Ballistic Missile Interceptors In Response To North Korean Threats

smi.james.th Re:NK would never do it (266 comments)

Not least of which, because if their recent tests are anything to be judged by, they would get it horribly wrong. That rocket that they launched? Crashed without doing anything useful. I don't know why the States is worried, China has more to fear if NK actually aims at the US.

about a year ago
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Ferrari Unveils World's Fastest (and Most Expensive) Hybrid

smi.james.th Re:Gas mileage (222 comments)

Ferrari's hypercars are super exclusive. If you were buying one of the 499 that they're making, they would have already contacted you to let you know ;)

Incidentally, IIRC, this isn't like a regular hybrid in that you can let it run on the electric motor alone, that would turn the engine off which would defeat the point of a V12 Ferrari. It's basically just an upgraded F1-KERS system. I guess the engine might turn off in stop-start traffic, but other than that, no.

about a year ago
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The Green Grid Publishes New Data Center Recycling Metric

smi.james.th Opportunities for profit (12 comments)

Isn't there a lot of precious metal in E-waste? AFAIK harvesting that can be quite lucrative as well. It surprises me that one needs initiatives such as this, one would think that the firms would want to recycle electronics anyway...

about a year ago
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ISP Trying Free (But Limited) Home Broadband Plan

smi.james.th Re:Attacks on bandwidth caps are shortsighted (213 comments)

My grandparents would fall into this category. While uncapped services are available here in South Africa, ones with e.g. 2GB caps are cheaper, and they seldom use more than about 200-300 MB on emails and the occasional crossword answer search... So 1GB free would be ideal for them.

about a year ago
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Pixel Picture Clearer? Google Ports Office-Substitute To Chrome OS, Browser

smi.james.th Re:Translation (158 comments)

Perhaps (and I could be wrong here) another reason to buy this Pixel is that it's got decent hardware but isn't going to be troubled by secure-boot and things like that so you can install your own OS on it if you get tired of chrome-OS.

about a year ago
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White House Tells Agencies To Increase Access to Fed-Funded Research

smi.james.th Re: A good first step (121 comments)

Sorry man, but there's already loads of crap on the internet. The peer review system is very important in establishing any sort of scientific credibility.

about a year and a half ago
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North Korea To Enable Mobile Internet Access — For Visitors Only

smi.james.th Re:Spying... (114 comments)

Okay he might try but if your communications are encrypted then he'll need to try pretty hard to understand them... so I would think that would give you some measure of privacy at least.

about a year and a half ago
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North Korea To Enable Mobile Internet Access — For Visitors Only

smi.james.th Re:Spying... (114 comments)

Surely using something like Tor or a VPN would prevent Kim Jong-Un from spying on you though?

about a year and a half ago
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Mosquitoes Beginning To Ignore DEET Repellent

smi.james.th Re:Umm, yeah (232 comments)

Okay, granted (disclaimer, I'm not a biologist) but the point remains: If you've already been born, your genetic material is pretty much fixed and you can't evolve due to happenings. I think this applies to mosquitoes as well.

about a year and a half ago
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Mosquitoes Beginning To Ignore DEET Repellent

smi.james.th Re:Umm, yeah (232 comments)

And me without mod points... Good comment though, because evolution can't happen within a generation, so if the mosquitoes who had smelled DEET had offspring who weren't bothered then THAT would be evolution (on a very small scale) but not within a living organism's lifetime.

about a year and a half ago

Submissions

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South African research team creates world's first digital laser

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  about 10 months ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "From the article:

In a traditional laser, the laser beam is shaped inside a box with two mirrors – the curvature of these mirrors determines the size and shape of the beam. If a researcher, company or manufacturer requires a different beam, they either have to replace one of the mirrors in the laser or manipulate the beam once it comes out of the laser using a spatial light modulator. Lasers [are expensive], and altering them is a lengthy and costly exercise.
...
The CSIR team, which is part of the National Laser Centre, has shown it is possible to alter the beam from inside the laser by replacing one of the mirrors with a computer interface. The research was published in scientific journal Nature Communications last month.

"

Link to Original Source
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Is there a secure email option for the privacy-conscious?

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  about a year ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "Towards the end of last week I found out about Tormail, and it seemed like just the thing I wanted — I'm a long-time GMail user (since before it was open to the public) but the recent exploits of Google (shutting down Google Reader, their pushing of Google+ everywhere, etc.) and the facts revealed by Snowden suggested to me that it was time to stop trusting cloud providers and take a bit more of an interest in privacy and anonymity. So I signed up and emailed many of my contacts to say that @tormail.org was my new address... only to have the site go down almost before I could read any responses. Today on /. I read about the operation by the FBI affecting many Tor sites, Tormail one of them. Just my luck.
Is there a reliable, secure alternative for email for a person like me? I'd prefer not to have to host it myself, I don't really think I have the skills, but if there's a package that's simple and reliable then that would be first prize. Basically anything to get my life out of Google's (and the FBI's) hands..."
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Scientists grow rat kidney

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  about a year ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "A laboratory grown kidney has successfully been transplanted into rats by scientists at Massachusets General Hospital, and is producing urine. Prof. Martin Birchall is quoted by the article as saying that "being able to do this for people needing an organ transplant could revolutionise medicine.""
Link to Original Source
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Australian scientists discover potential aids cure

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  about a year and a half ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "Several sites report that Australian researcher David Harrich and his team have potentially discovered a way to stop HIV becoming AIDS and ultimately cure the disease. From the article: "What we've actually done is taken a normal virus protein that the virus needs to grow, and we've changed this protein, so that instead of assisting the virus, it actually impedes virus replication and does it quite strongly." This could potentially hail one of modern medicine's greatest victories."
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How to make a DVD-rental store more relevant?

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  about a year and a half ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "Here on Slashdot, the concept that older models of business need to be updated to keep with the times is often mentioned. A friend of mine owns a DVD rental store, and he often listens to potential customers walk out, saying that they'd rather download the movie, and not because his prices are unreasonable. With the local telco on a project to boost internet speeds, my friend feels as though the end is near for his livelihood. So, Slashdotters, I put it to you: What can a DVD store owner do to make his store more relevant? What services would you pay for at a DVD store?"
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Disposing of old appliances?

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  more than 2 years ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "I've recently become involved with an old family friend, a bachelor who during his life hoarded a lot of stuff, and it looks as though he might not be able to take care of himself any more. There's a strong possibility that he'll take up residence in a care home or with someone else, and my family have offered to help him deal with his house. The challenge is, he has many old appliances in varying states of not working, things like a fridge, a microwave, a kettle, some power tools and other things of varying sizes, mostly from the late 70s and 80s, including a very old computer with a CRT monitor which also doesn't work. My question is, how does one go about getting rid of all of this stuff? Would doing so pose some environmental risk? There's no point to selling it because it doesn't work. Can it be recycled? What sort of firm would take it away?"
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Brazilian Schoolchildren Tagged by Computer Chips

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  more than 2 years ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "The NYTimes has a piece today which says: "Grade-school students in a northeastern Brazilian city are using uniforms embedded with computer chips that alert parents if they are cutting classes, the city’s education secretary, Coriolano Moraes, said Thursday." Personally I don't find this too inspiring. Mr Orwell certainly has warned the world about this."
Link to Original Source
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Bomb-proof Smart Rubbish Bins

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  more than 2 years ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "Make magazine has an interesting piece on a concept for Wi-Fi enabled smart rubbish bins, which are also coincidentally bomb-proof. From the article:
"The gadget: bomb-proof recycle bins with dual-screen LCDs.
The info on the screens: Stuff only business folk would enjoy, like London stock exchange numbers and content from The Economist.
The total cost to install: About $47,000 for 25 smart bins.
The future: London wants to install 75 more of these high-tech trash cans by before the 2012 London Olympics..""

Link to Original Source
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DIY Ultrasonic Glove

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  more than 2 years ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "Make magazine has a piece on an invention by Steve Hoefer, a DIY ultrasonic glove. From the article: "Using it is super intuitive: with your hand extended, the servos vibrate as you get closer to an object, like a wall, and alert you to stop or change route. The closer the object, the greater pressure Tacit puts on your wrist." This sounds like a great invention, it's a cool toy but it may have applications for e.g. the visually impaired as well."
Link to Original Source
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Stem Cell Transplant Cures HIV-positive Man

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  more than 3 years ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "There's an article on The Huffington Post that describes the treatment of a man named Timothy Ray Brown for leukemia using a transplant of stem cells back in 2007. From the article: 'His doctors recently published a report in the journal Blood affirming that the results of extensive testing "strongly suggest that cure of HIV infection has been achieved." ' The article unfortunately does not describe how the treatment affected Brown's leukemia, but if the findings turn out to be true, 'they can certainly provide hope for the more than 33 million people living with HIV worldwide.' As far as I'm aware, this is the first time in history that an HIV-positive person has been cured of the virus, so hopefully soon enough, that cure can be available to more people around the globe."
Link to Original Source
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DIY Web Sever... From Scratch

smi.james.th smi.james.th writes  |  more than 3 years ago

smi.james.th (1706780) writes "At IEEE Spectrum there is an interesting article about Bill Buzbee, a software developer that has built his own webserver, the scale of which achievement becomes unusual when you learn that he has done it by "wire-wrapping together some two hundred 74-series TTL chips." He calls his hand-made CPU Magic-1 and claims it has comparable performance with an Intel 8086."
Link to Original Source

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