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In IT, Beware of Fad Versus Functional

toddestan Re:In IT, remember to wash your hands (152 comments)

On the upside, you won't have to deal with licensing issues for the operating system. I'm running into this with XP - Microsoft will not license new copies of XP and you can't downgrade a current version of Windows either. This makes replacing hardware difficult - even if the new hardware would work, if you can't get XP on it and the control software requires XP, you're kind of stuck.

yesterday
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Waze Causing Anger Among LA Residents

toddestan Re:Move to a gated community (590 comments)

Your examples are all crimes. Not knowing where your friend's house is located is not a crime.

yesterday
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Jaguar and Land Rover Just Created Transparent Pillars For Cars

toddestan Re:That's not the problem; the rearview mirror is (190 comments)

The problem with most sedans when you're over 6 foot is that you barely fit into them anyway. You're already looking out the top of the windshield, so the only solution would be to lower the mirror, such as putting it on the dash as seen in some classics, or make the car taller like a truck or a Scion xB so that you can place the mirror higher. The problem is even worse in newer cars with their obnoxious sloping rooflines, where despite having plenty of head room I find eye level to be the sun visor. I suppose another solution would be to make the rear view mirror semi-transparent so you can see both through it and what's reflected in it, though it seems to me it would be really tough to make it work right in all lighting situations.

2 days ago
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LG To Show Off New 55-Inch 8K Display at CES

toddestan Re:(^*@$# marketing numbers... (179 comments)

Don't forget that the actual horizontal resolutions are less than what they say too. 2K is 1920 pixels, 4K is 3840 pixels, and 8K is apparently 7680 pixels. Kind of reminds me how hard drives are sold, actually. Someone mentioned cinema, but in cinema 4K is 4096x2160, and this had been well established before the TV and computer monitor makers redefined the term.

3 days ago
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LG To Show Off New 55-Inch 8K Display at CES

toddestan Re:4k monitors (179 comments)

There's plenty of them available for under $1000, with some under $500. Compared to what we paid for high end monitors back in the 90's, they are incredibly cheap. And that's not even taking inflation into account.

3 days ago
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LG To Show Off New 55-Inch 8K Display at CES

toddestan Re:8K!? but I haven't even bought a 4K yet (179 comments)

For a computer monitor, you can take advantage of 4K immediately. The 4K televisions are a bit of a mystery though.

3 days ago
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LG To Show Off New 55-Inch 8K Display at CES

toddestan Re:We don't care how many pixels it has (179 comments)

That assumes that the refresh rate of the panel is stuck at 60Hz and can't simply change to 24Hz for 24 FPS content. CRTs are capable of changing their refresh rates, and it should be even easier for LCDs to do so.

3 days ago
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U.S. Passenger Vehicle Fleet Dirtier After 2008 Recession

toddestan Re:Trading off clean cars and costs (176 comments)

Actually, I think the best thing would be to get rid of the different rules for light trucks. The current rules punish larger cars too much for being inefficient, so instead we get even less efficient (and less safe) crossover SUVs because they can be sold as trucks and not cars. These vehicles should be made to follow the same rules.

Even in the light truck category, things are still messed up. The rules allow for larger trucks to use more fuel, which makes sense. Except that the rules are skewed to favor larger trucks, which has had the result of pretty much destroying the small truck market in the US. This is also part of the reason why the entry-level trucks from the big three such as the F150 are huge compared to their predecessors from 20 years ago.

3 days ago
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U.S. Passenger Vehicle Fleet Dirtier After 2008 Recession

toddestan Re:Cash for Klunkers? (176 comments)

I doubt that they program had much effect by 2013. In the short term, it pulled a bunch of sales forward, but by 2013 that was pretty much over. Interestingly, the whole Cash for Clunkers thing actually didn't take many of the worst polluters off the road, as those were mostly owned by people too poor to take advantage of the program (which required the purchase of a new car). Instead, the cars that would have made their way down to them, many of which were perfectly fine cars, were taken off the used market and destroyed. Keep in mind that an older, worn out or poorly maintained car can pollute 100-1000x more than a new car.

3 days ago
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U.S. Passenger Vehicle Fleet Dirtier After 2008 Recession

toddestan Re:Older cars reduce pollution (176 comments)

They'd have to take into account the costs of processing and recycling a car then. It's not exactly a green process, though greener than mining raw materials.

3 days ago
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The Case For Flipping Your Monitor From Landscape to Portrait

toddestan Re:Would love to do this (563 comments)

I can't see how. I'd much rather have a large desktop screen and a regular keyboard than be hunched over a tiny tablet screen and what passes for a keyboard on those things if I'm going to do any serious word processing. Heck, even a modest desktop screen will give you more vertical space than the iPad in 3:4 mode, though granted the pixel density won't be as high.

3 days ago
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The Case For Flipping Your Monitor From Landscape to Portrait

toddestan Re:Read one, write other (563 comments)

Unless something has changed, you still need iTunes to use your iDevice. So everyone iPhone/iPad user has a Windows PC or Mac kicking around somewhere. I don't know about the Surface/Windows products but I would imagine they're the same. Maybe you could get away with it if you use Android.

Like the parent, I don't know anyone who has a smartphone or tablet who doesn't also have a computer of some sort. I know plenty of "casual" web users who still do most or all their web browsing from a computer. Maybe some of it is inertia, but there's also a lot of people who prefer doing things with a keyboard and mouse and a large 20"+ screen instead of a touch interface and a tiny mobile screen.

The real story behind the drop in sales is that the lifespan of a desktop computer is so much longer nowadays. For casual web browsing, pretty much anything made since about 2006 is just fine. So you're typical home user just isn't buying desktop computers, because the one they have works just fine, thank you very much. Laptop sales haven't been hit quite as hard since laptop hardware tends to not last as long plus there's a greater chance for damage or for the laptop to get lost. Meanwhile the lifespan of tablets and smartphones are only 1-3 years or so. It just seems to be expected that you're going to buy the upgraded version after a year or two.

3 days ago
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French Publishers Prepare Lawsuit Against Adblock Plus

toddestan Re:They can go bite a donkey (683 comments)

Geocities is gone (RIP), but both Tripod and Angelfire are still around, actually.

about a week ago
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Orion Capsule Safely Recovered, Complete With 12-Year-Old Computer Guts

toddestan Re:clock speeds yes (197 comments)

They're not dropping a P4 or an Athlon XP in these things. The processor is basically a radiation-hardened Motorola G3 running at 200MHz. Or in x86 terms, take a Tualatin P3 (widely available mobile processor in 2002) and underclock it.to a fraction of its original speed.

about two weeks ago
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Orion Capsule Safely Recovered, Complete With 12-Year-Old Computer Guts

toddestan Re:clock speeds yes (197 comments)

A 19" CRT is about 80W. A 19" LCD is about 30W. So if you have the monitor on for 8 hours a day you use an extra 0.4KWH, which at the 12.5 cents/KWH I pay comes out to an even nickel per day. If I use the monitor 365 days a year for 8 hours, I'll pay an extra $18.25 in electricity. So the payback would be a few years, probably around the lifespan of the replacement LCD.

about two weeks ago
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Consumer-Grade SSDs Survive Two Petabytes of Writes

toddestan Re:Random failures (125 comments)

As maligned as the DeathStars were, I never lost any data on them. They always gave signs of theilr impending doom, and lasted long enough to copy the data off of them. In comparison, I've seen enough SSDs suddenly just stop working, and anything stored on them is simply gone.

about two weeks ago
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Is Chernobyl Still Dangerous? Was 60 Minutes Pushing Propaganda?

toddestan Re:Yes (409 comments)

Link works fine for me. It's one of those show an ad and redirect you type of sites, so you might want to check your adblocker.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Non-Coders, Why Aren't You Contributing To Open Source?

toddestan Re:It doesn't seem friendly (488 comments)

They also need to add a way to get rid of the annoying message directing you to install flash any time everytime you visit a page that needs flash and you don't have it installed. Did it ever occur to them that some people don't want to install flash? Or that some people may run an open source browser on a platform that isn't even supported by flash?

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Non-Coders, Why Aren't You Contributing To Open Source?

toddestan Re:Mod the parent up. (488 comments)

I think a big part of the problem is not just that the UI changed, it's that the Firefox UI changes are basically a rip-off of Chrome's UI. So if you don't like Chrome's UI, you're certainly not going to be happy with a browser that looks and acts like a bad copy of Chrome.

about two weeks ago
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Montana Lawmakers Propose 85 Mph Speed Limit On Interstates

toddestan Re:Texas and Montana (525 comments)

Well, you have mountains in the western part, and those can slow you down quite a bit. Especially if you have to go well out of your way just to get around them depending on your starting point or destination. There simply aren't a lot of roads in that part of the state, and the roads that do exist you aren't going to be driving 60 on generally. Granted, if you're just pounding down I-90/I-94 then that'll take about 10 hours if you don't stop much. Then again, to a lot of people that's a day's worth of driving.

about two weeks ago

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