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Windows 8.1 May Restore Boot-To-Desktop, Start Button

sphantom Re:Er...what exodus? (628 comments)

Exodus to mobile devices like tablets and smart phones. It's no secret the PC industry is losing customers as your average non-techie is able to do almost everything they want on a tablet instead of some beige box in the corner of a downstairs den.

I get this kind of blank stare from colleagues at the office too. Let's face it, yes there are many things PC's can do that tablets don't, but those things are being done less and less by the average device buyer. Us techno-literates are a minority. It's myopic to think that just because we need PC's, everyone else does too.

Sorry, I know this wasn't the debate your comment was necessarily aimed at, but it's relevant..

about a year and a half ago
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Alan Cox: Fedora 18 "The Worst Red Hat Distro," Switches To Ubuntu

sphantom Re:Go Arch (380 comments)

To each his own, AC. Obviously you're passionate and hard minded about it, otherwise you wouldn't have referred to me as a zealot after I mentioned I've switched distros 3 times in the past 2 years (and hence package managers and init systems). Thanks for playing though.

about 2 years ago
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Alan Cox: Fedora 18 "The Worst Red Hat Distro," Switches To Ubuntu

sphantom Re:Go Arch (380 comments)

I actually find pacman to be a little better than apt/aptitude. Additionally, dealing with packages not in the standard repos tends to be a better experience in Arch.

On the flip side of the coin though, Arch feels a bit like Gentoo at times in that some tasks can require a bit of manual intervention.

Plusses and minuses to both I suppose.

about 2 years ago
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Alan Cox: Fedora 18 "The Worst Red Hat Distro," Switches To Ubuntu

sphantom Re:Go Arch (380 comments)

I'll admit that systemd has a learning curve as some commands don't have equivalents, but after a couple of days of having to google for the right commands, I don't think its as bad as its made out to be (most likely by those who aren't willing to atleast try to use it for an extended period of time).

IMHO, it seems to be a "simple but limited" vs "complex and powerful" argument. I also find switching distros solely because of the init system to be a little much. Do yourself a favor and at least attempt to learn the regularly used systemd commands with an open mind. You may find its not nearly as bad as you think.

about 2 years ago
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Alan Cox: Fedora 18 "The Worst Red Hat Distro," Switches To Ubuntu

sphantom Go Arch (380 comments)

After making the switch from Ubuntu to Fedora after the Unity fiasco, I recently switched from F17 to Arch due to all the delays. I couldn't be happier.

about 2 years ago
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Judge Demands Email and Facebook Passwords From Women In Sexual Harassment Case

sphantom Re:Aquisition of evidence (218 comments)

My apologies, I should have said SUBPOENA.

about 2 years ago
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Judge Demands Email and Facebook Passwords From Women In Sexual Harassment Case

sphantom Re:Aquisition of evidence (218 comments)

I don't disagree that all pertinent evidence should be gathered to prove or disprove a case, but the correct course of action here is for the judge to issue a warrant to the respective carriers/sites for the necessary information. Asking for someones passwords for evidence is like asking for someone's ATM PIN code to get their financial records.

about 2 years ago
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Is a Computer Science Degree Worth Getting Anymore?

sphantom Re:Experience experience experience (630 comments)

If you want to get those nice jobs my advice is to pimp yourself out contracting for 2 years. The work is hard and the pay is mediocre at best but your contacts get HUGE afterwards when your non compete agreement ends and you can make bank. After that only hte most beaucratic companies will weed you out on that piece of paper.

+1

I took a consulting job with a medium sized services firm when i first moved into a new town and ended up gaining an insane amount of product experience and got to know hundreds of people. After about 4 years of consulting, the amount of effort got old and i took a server job for a company that was happy to grab me quickly (after taking one look at my resume and having a good interview). That job paid me almost double the job that immediately preceded the consulting experience.

more than 2 years ago
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Fedora 16 Released

sphantom Re:Important note about nvidia/rpmfusion and F16 (125 comments)

I didn't get the warning in time and upgraded. Turns out I'm affected and hadn't even nailed down the issue until I saw your post. It not HORRIBLE per se, but it is mildly annoying. It manifests itself as a momentary system lock up, kind of like what happens when you run out of RAM and start swapping to disk. It's not continuous, there are periods of heavy occurrance, and of light occurrance.

Should be fixed soon it sounds like. It's tolerable for that period of time.

more than 3 years ago
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Anonymous Vows To Destroy Facebook

sphantom Shyeaaa.. when pigs fly... (575 comments)

Though I'm against vigilante justice, I certainly agree with their motives.

HOWEVER.... Am I the only one who thinks Anon won't have much success? The worst they could probably do hack some user accounts. If they think DDOS'ing a site with the infrastructure to handle hundreds of millions of users is going to work with a bot net made up of a few hundred thousand machines, then they're probably in for a surprise. Heck didn't they already try and fail with Amazon?

Or was that Lulzsec? I get those two confused all the time.

more than 3 years ago
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Apple's iOS 4 Hardware Encryption Cracked

sphantom Re:Why does encryption never work? (208 comments)

The encryption itself is solid. What falls most of the time is the specific implementation. Say for example I made the choice to encrypt my hard drive but didn't use an already baked system like Ubuntu's home drive encryption. Instead I decided to do it by hand and code my own pre-boot initramfs to automatically handle decryption by hashing some hardware specific identifier from the bios. Except that since I'm not a security expert, I made some foolish coding error which allowed the hash to be intercepted or easily guessed. Then some hacker comes along, figures it out and now has full access to my encrypted data.

In this case the encryption itself is sound, and wasn't cracked, instead my shotty coding and/or lack of solid security knowledge was exploited. 9 times out of 10 this seems to be the case when encryption is defeated (brute forcing aside of course).

To answer your question though, why should you trust HTTPS? I'd say that you can never be 100% sure, but HTTPS has been around long enough to have been well tested by by people who rely on it being solid (banks, etc) that you're probably pretty safe. Rest assured that if HTTPS's implementation of encryption were cracked, it'd be news, and you'd know (I assume).

more than 3 years ago
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Dell Releases Streak Source Code

sphantom Android is Apache licensed, not GPL licensed (83 comments)

I'd just like to add for those readers not in the know that Android uses Apache licensing. They're not required to publish any modifications to Android, only to the kernel since it's GPL and not Apache. As such, it's highly likely that we'll never see the entire ROM's source code.

more than 4 years ago
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BP Robot Seriously Hampers Oil Spill Containment

sphantom Yeaahhh, it was all the tool's fault. Suuure.. (264 comments)

I like how this is all a robot's fault. As if these dozen robots are all flying around the busted well using an AI from the future to do work autonomously.

How about we tell it like it is. Some dude/dudette piloting an underwater submersible accidentally bumped into the well and did damage, and that damage required uncapping the well to fix.

More incompetence from the folks at BP. Nice spin job though.

Disclaimer: I harbor no hostility towards the pilot. It's BP who continuously makes bad decisions about how to handle a situation (such as putting too many bots in the water, or having them piloted by people not skilled enough to handle the situation) and the covers it up by blaming something else.

Sheesh.

more than 4 years ago
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Intel Says Farewell To PCI Bus

sphantom Re:ok... (415 comments)

Hate to burst your bubble, but DisplayPort is just as DRM encumbered. You may be thinking about the fact that DP is royalty free, whereas HDMI is not.

more than 4 years ago
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iPad Left Vulnerable After Record iPhone Patch Job

sphantom Re:Stop with the "record number of bugs fixed" ple (145 comments)

This might be a perspective thing, but I read "Company X has patched a record number of security holes" as a negative thing, not as something the OP or company X is reporting to gloat about. I've taken the liberty of reading the links by the OP (shocking, I know), and didn't find any of them to really be coming across as something that anyone is looking for a pat on that back for (and for the record, I didn't see an official comment from Apple on their "record patch job").

Fundamentally, you're right though. It'd be nice if companies could make flawless products, but it seems to be the exception rather than the rule, and when any company addresses a record number of fixes to a product's flaws, I see no reason why it shouldn't make the news. Granted, some fanboys will try and spin it into a positive of some kind, but that's not really shocking and we all know how trustworthy fanboys are.

My $0.02.

more than 4 years ago
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Google Faces Deluge of Nexus One Complaints

sphantom Re:Who cares? (329 comments)

I have a distinct feeling that Android and OpenMoko are going to be kissing cousins that only a few people have ever seen in the wild.

Care to place a friendly (or unfriendly) wager on that? Though I don't own a google phone, I'd say it's safe to say my distinct feeling is quite the opposite.

Motorola alone sold a million Droids in only a few months, and the growth (in sales and mind share) that Android has seen in the year or so it's been out it's actually quite surprising. I hate to say it, but I'd almost compare it to Windows on the Desktop. Almost certainly there are a fair share of fanboys and anti-fan boys out there, but the vast majority of users don't give a rats ass and just use what they know.

My distinct feeling is that Android becomes heavily commoditized and ubiquitous (because any phone manufacturer can use it for free, and customize it to their liking rather than pay some huge amount to develop and maintain their own operating system). Because of that, it becomes wildly available and consumers just end up using Android by default because it's what their shiny phone that they picked out in the store came with. Granted, I don't see ubiquity happening in the short term, but I'd expect it to become more prevalent as smartphone market share nears and eventually passes "dumb" phone market share.

Now before the Apple fan boys chime in here and wave their smartphone majority flag, I'll clarify that I see the Apple shooting themselves in the foot by limiting themselves to one basic model (the iPhone) while being the sole provider of it (and limiting what network you can choose). Let's face it, most people holding iPhones right now (myself included) are likely geekier than the general population and tend to be early adopters of consumer electronics. That's a LIMITED market compared to the much larger market of cell phone users in general

The iPhone really is the Model T of cell phones. There's very little customization, and as soon as everyone gets over the shock of something new (i.e. a mass produced combustion vehicle, or a snazzy smartphone), The competition is gonna eat you for breakfast by catering to consumer demand.

But hey, that's just one man's opinion, about as equally valid as your own.

more than 4 years ago
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Less Than Free

sphantom Re:Android WILL take over. (330 comments)

Absolutely! Linux on the desktop does share many of those common points. The key thing that distinguishes the two is that (in my opinion) Linux on the desktop doesn't actually compare well to Windows from a user's perspective. Unfortunately one of the major factors when deciding between the two is a dependency in what a person is used to. Fortunately, Android has FAR less of a battle to win in the smartphone space given how relatively simple phones are compared to computers and how poor Microsoft's offering is compared to the rest of the market.

about 5 years ago
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Less Than Free

sphantom Android WILL take over. (330 comments)

It's only a matter of time before Android takes over top market share for smartphones, the only real question is how long it takes. Now before you start screaming fan boy, bear with me here.

- Android is free
- Android can run on almost any piece of modern hardware, on any carrier (you listening Apple? probably not.)
- Every major carrier and every major smartphone maker either already has an Android phone, or has one in the works
- Being open source, carriers and smartphone makers can customize it as little or as much as they want
- Once smart phone makers are hooked on free, the only reason to dump Android is if there's a better mobile phone operating system out there that's worth the cost. Tough to do considering Android will be constantly approved upon given it's open source. Seriously, why dump Android to pay a per unit license fee when Android can do everything most smartphone users want their phone to do (and more in some cases)?

Some disclaimers apply here:
- No I don't have an Android phone, but yes I've used it enough to be familiar with it (including 2.0).
- I don't think its 100% there yet, but it's not far.
- Apples UI design is definitely better.

I'm sure some will disagree with me, and that's fine. Obviously this is my opinion and a guess. If you're looking for some ammo though, I use a Pre, switched from an iPhone and am pretty darn happy with it.

about 5 years ago
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Microsoft Takes Responsibility For GPL Violation

sphantom I'm just curious... (364 comments)

Why is Microsoft farming out the programming of a relatively simple tool when they have 10s of thousands of programmers and consultants on their payroll? Issues like this are exactly why you shouldn't outsource work when you already have employees that could do the job.

more than 5 years ago
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Microsoft Takes Responsibility For GPL Violation

sphantom Re:I was right for once (364 comments)

Am I missing something here? I'm afraid I don't see the link between Microsoft's position in the BSA, and their accidental release of a FREE program (tool would be a better word) containing GPL code. I can understand that the definition of piracy could be interpreted loosely, and can even concede that a product could be pirated even if it was free (there could be intellectual property issues), but I'm just not getting the link between piracy and this particular issue.

Also, I could be wrong, but doesn't the GPL'd code taint the rest of the non-GPL'd code? It's my understanding that as soon as Microsoft started distributing this product, the fact that it contained GPL'd code could mean that the rest of the code is considered derivative. Simply replacing the GPL'd code with non-GPL'd code wouldn't work because the "derivative" code was required to be released as soon as the cat came out of the bag. It seems to me that MS GPL'ing the whole shibang is really the only outcome that could have happened here.

more than 5 years ago

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