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Adafruit's Smart Helmet Helps Navigate to NYC's Citi Bike Stations

spagthorpe Re:can you NYC people answer this for me? (37 comments)

Most of the city buses around here have bike racks on the front of the bus for just this purpose. It lets you go across town, and then lets you ride to and from some other destination. I've seen policies for this on light rail as well.

about a year ago
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NSA WhistleBlower Outs Himself

spagthorpe Re:Modern Jesus (860 comments)

Exactly. I don't see anyone in the govt losing sleep over these revelations coming out. There is no real outrage in this country over anything. A few will be highly vocal about it, and the rest just go about their daily lives, staring at their cellphones and watching reality TV. Every individual in their country got fleeced by big banking, but there were no pitchforks over that, and there won't be for this. Only reason we really know anything about it is that we're all probably on a lot of tech sites. I'd bet money I could ask around in the coffee shop I'm in, and most would have never even heard about it.

about a year ago
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What Keeps You On (or Off) Windows in 2013?

spagthorpe Win7 at home, Linux at work (1215 comments)

I have zero issues with Windows 7 at home. It's been very stable for me, and I'm able to do all I need with it. I have VMWare when I need it for any other OS.

I use Linux at work exclusively, currently Mint 14 with Mate. Overall, it's a great distro, with an intuitive feel most of the time.

I guess the thing that keeps me from using Linux at home is that I'm comfortable with the collection of applications I use at home, and there are no comparable equivalents for Linux that I've seen. So much work goes into improving the Linux Desktop experience....I wish the same level of resources would go into the application base. The office suites are fairly mature, but it's just all the smaller peripheral applications I use that aren't really there. I could probably make some combination of Linux programs work, but there is zero incentive for me to break what currently works.

about a year ago
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Cell Phones As a Dirty Bomb Detection Network

spagthorpe In other words... (103 comments)

..a highly ingenious way to warn us about something that has close to a zero chance of happening. I guess it's like the rest of Homeland Security's efforts, just without the ingenious part.

about a year ago
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Why PC Sales Are Declining

spagthorpe Re:Value-added resellers (564 comments)

When I bought my Macbook Pro, the first thing I did was create a Boot Camp partition, and install a fresh Windows 7 Pro on it. In the 18 months that I've had the machine, I've never once used it. I was sure there would be some Windows software I wouldn't be able to live without, but between OSX and the Linux VM I have on there, I've not needed it at all. It's just a waste of 80gb at the moment. Thankfully I got the Win7 cheap as a student.

about a year ago
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How Google Fiber Could Do Some National Good, Or At Least Scare the Carriers

spagthorpe Re:AT&Ts model (163 comments)

I had 6Mbps back East. It was pretty usable, but if you're paying for 1Gbps it's an insult.

I pay for and get 60Mbps now, but it's data capped, so I'm allowed just under 15 hours of that speed a month (720 hours in a month). Every other option in my area is also data capped, but slower. This whole system is fucking bullshit.

about a year ago
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How Google Fiber Could Do Some National Good, Or At Least Scare the Carriers

spagthorpe AT&Ts model (163 comments)

1Gbps speed for the first 2GB, then $10 per GB after. Or maybe they'll just throttle you down to 6Mbps for the rest of the month.

about a year ago
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Interviews: Ask J. Michael Straczynski What You Will

spagthorpe Re:BBT (215 comments)

Given that BBT is basically geek blackface, and loathed by most that I know, I wouldn't take anything said about B5 to be anything more than a semi-obscure reference the writers put on there to make the primary audience of non-geeks laugh. I'd be wiling to bet that most people that are fans of BBT have never seen a B5 episode.

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best 3-D Design Software?

spagthorpe Re:Alibre! (218 comments)

I would agree with Alibre. I bought it years ago for some work a friend and I were working on. Like all 3D software, there is a heavy learning curve, and there is no free lunch here. Alibre came with around 6hrs of training videos, and of course, there is YouTube for lots of other questions that come up.

I think you'll find after reading all these posts that there is no easy way to do this, you sort of have to pick one and go with it. Alibre is very well supported, and has a pretty big following in the home machinest/hobby crowd, and their monthly news email has cool stuff that people are doing with it. I knew I didn't need a full multi-thousand dollar pro system for the cad work we were doing, but I didn't want a buggy open source solution either. Alibre was the best blend between the two I found.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Mac To Linux Return Flow?

spagthorpe Happy with Mint/Mate for the desktop at this point (965 comments)

I was a so-so Linux user, primarily using Windows for most of my tasks, and just sort of playing with Linux. I went to OSX for a laptop, and although didn't like it at first, and still have issues, I'm reasonably happy with it. New job though, and I'm in front of Mint Linux 100% during the day. I've found it surprisingly adept at just about everything I do for work (heavy embedded work, libre office, web, pdfs, etc)....enough so that I have a VM of it at home running 24x7 on my Windows machine, and use it quite a bit. In fact, I've scaled back the things I do on Win7 quite a bit, and with a few tweaks, think I could be happy running Mint full-time. It runs well enough as a VM that I'm inclined not to mess with it. I don't think I'd gain much from having it native, except the endless stream of background Windows updating that's always going on. I can't slam Win7 that bad though. It is rare as hell for me to need to reboot the machine, maybe once this year so far.

about a year and a half ago
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Is It Time To Enforce a Gamers' Bill of Rights?

spagthorpe I don't know if Bill of Rights is the right thing (469 comments)

I don't see any point in trying to enforce something like this. What I would like to see would be a "Bullshit Inside" badge attached to a game that meant it had any of those things. Then I could choose to spend money or not. We had to put stickers on music that had a naughty word in them, and we have ratings on games for every other type of potentially offensive content. Doesn't seem like a stretch to blatantly mark something as DRM enforced, or additional money required.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Does the FOSS Community Currently Need?

spagthorpe Re:What OSS really needs... (356 comments)

You want to see a drastic change in the user interface for the worse, take a look at the latest Microsoft Visual Studio. Totally flat looking, devoid of color. It's almost unusable in the sense that I have to spend time visually hunting for things on the screen all the time. There are no real patterns for my eyes to lock on to. Complete fail.

about a year and a half ago
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Evil, Almost Full Vim Implementation In Emacs, Reaches 1.0

spagthorpe Re:Um, why? (252 comments)

I'm also trying to figure out the point to this.

about a year and a half ago
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Site Copies Content and Uses the DMCA to Take Down the Original Articles

spagthorpe Re:Indians in a nutshell (241 comments)

It's exactly the same in all the pre-med classes I took. The instructors had to go to great lengths to separate the Indian students on test days. There were numerous cases of where Indian students in one class of a professors would steal the exam during a test, and give it to students in a later class. The professors had a huge burden of extra work to come up with different exams for each individual class. The Indian students didn't seem to care or protest one bit about being singled out for cheating, as it just seemed part of the game to them.

about a year and a half ago
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Federal Gun Control Requires IT Overhaul

spagthorpe Or we could save spending billions of dollars... (436 comments)

...protecting ourselves from extremely rare occurrences that affect a very small percentage of the population as a whole, but that isn't how we do things in the US unfortunately.

about a year and a half ago
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Free Wi-Fi: the Movement To Give Away Your Internet For the Good of Humanity

spagthorpe Legal issues aside... (505 comments)

I still wouldn't be able to participate in something like this because of the data caps my monopolistic cable provider has. It's one thing for me to pay for my own monthly usage, but having my limit sucked dry in a few days and either paying a great deal for the overages or having my service cut off goes beyond my willingness to help out.

about a year and a half ago
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Richard Stallman Answers Your Questions

spagthorpe Re:"Elegant jails" (527 comments)

I get the Apple is evil thing. I do. Please though, tell me what company I can trust? Should I trust Google with one of their phones for example? I think that ship sailed. I was thinking maybe one of the new Ubuntu phones, but wait, Canonical is in the middle of user privacy issues.

about a year and a half ago
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'Connected' TVs Mostly Used Just Like the Unconnected Kind

spagthorpe Rage against the machine.... (217 comments)

Last month I bought my first new TV, having owned a lot of castoffs from friends. A shiny new Panasonic plasma "smart TV". My first thought was that I'd never use that stuff, but the picture was the deciding factor. Since the router was nearby, I went ahead and attached an Ethernet cable to it. Next thing you know, I'm surfing around on the built in Netflix and Amazon Prime apps, and less than a month later, I actually cancelled the cable TV service that I stopped watching.

Maybe it's just that I value my time differently, or that I don't spend hours randomly cruising through the channels on the off chance that I catch a show when I want to watch something. I want something on demand when I have time, and at least on my TV and internet connection combination, Netflix HD looks absolutely amazing.

Of course the cable providers know this, which is why heavy caps are in place in a lot of markets, and why I had to up my internet plan with my ISP to give me a higher cap, but if I was a big TV watcher, I'd still bust it.

about a year and a half ago
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NZBMatrix Closes Their Website

spagthorpe Too many people... (144 comments)

Too many people violated the first rule of USENET.

about a year and a half ago
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USB NeXT Keyboard With an Arduino Micro

spagthorpe Re:When things lasted (115 comments)

I'm actually glad people didn't stop with the old one button Macintosh mouse, or those first Microsoft two button pieces of crap, with the rubber ball that needed regular cleaning and a cord that was frequently in the way. The current optical mice, even in planned obsolescence form are lightyears better in my opinion.

I'd almost say the same with cases. The old metal shells case covers, with hard to access drive bays, no front panel access, and poor ventilation are also dinosaurs that I'm glad have become extinct. The current case I've had for the last five years is the best I've ever had, and while it's possible the power supply might give it up at some point, I'll drop in a new one. The case I imagine will last for the next decade at least, assuming I'm still able to purchase hobbyist level components by then.

I do prefer to buy things that last, but really, the frequent upgrades that have been forced upon us in some ways have been a blessing.

about a year and a half ago

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