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Supreme Court Skeptical of Computer-Based Patents

vovin Re:There are Three Things I Know (192 comments)

I agree. Except the term should be 1 week. No extensions.

about three weeks ago
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Judge Overrules Samsung Objection To Jury Instructional Video

vovin Slide to unlock (232 comments)

FYI.
I recall slide to unlock on the Medtronic N'Vision 8840 circa 2002.
Maybe you can get *that* bogus patent thrown out?

about three weeks ago
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Fluke Donates Multimeters To SparkFun As Goodwill Gesture

vovin Re:Sparkfun $14.95 DMMs for sale (250 comments)

Generally have good luck there.
Decent place and they honor the on-line prices which often are lower than the in store prices.

about a month ago
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Austin Has Highest Salaries For Tech Workers, After Factoring In Cost of Living

vovin Re:Silicon Valley is the Place to be (285 comments)

No college grad is getting a 130k in SV. Maybe half that if they know the right people.
Wages in the valley are very low and pulled down by both collusion and a huge influx of cheap labor form outside N. America.
Perhaps you are trying to qualify your statement with 'top notch engineer' and the ratio of top notch engineers in the valley is far worse that most places I have been. Something like 1 to 5000 in the valley where you may find 1 to 500 or even 1 to 100 where the wage to cost of living and quality of life ratios are better.
Most of what is in the valley is the modern day equivalent of factory workers being bused to work and back.

about a month and a half ago
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Mathematician: Is Our Universe a Simulation?

vovin Re:Future? (745 comments)

Your concept of time is that of the simulation?

Absolutely nothing implies that the simulation time is correlated with now, or that the simulation runs in anything approximating 'real' time.

about 2 months ago
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Kansas To Nix Expansion of Google Fiber and Municipal Broadband

vovin Re:But Kansas! (430 comments)

In Hong Kong that will cost you $168 HKD /month on a 6mo contract.
That is just under $22 USD / month.
Also includes phone service (not that useful as everyone has cell phone).

about 3 months ago
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Employee Morale Is Suffering At the NSA

vovin Re:Been there. Done that. (841 comments)

Before 1913 the Federal government collected duties on good entering the country and tariffs on certain goods. However the amount of collected is very small and easily avoided by any person choosing to vote against Federal policies by not buying dutiable goods.

The nation had few taxes in its early history. From 1791 to 1802, the United States government was supported by internal taxes on distilled spirits, carriages, refined sugar, tobacco and snuff, property sold at auction, corporate bonds, and slaves. The high cost of the War of 1812 brought about the nation's first sales taxes on gold, silverware, jewelry, and watches. In 1817, however, Congress did away with all internal taxes, relying on tariffs on imported goods to provide sufficient funds for running the government.

Read more: History of the Income Tax in the United States | Infoplease.com http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0005921.html#ixzz2mwDj6t23

Under some circumstances the Federal income was collected from the individual States, such as:

The direct tax of 1798 imposed taxes on “lands, houses and slaves” totaling $2 million over the next two years, apportioned to states in amounts according to representation (as measured in the U.S. census).

http://www.thenewamerican.com/culture/history/item/14268-before-the-income-tax

States placed taxes on real property some of this money was apportioned to the Federal government based on the population of State, hence the need for the census. Along with the money collected each State was represented by two seats in the US Senate. It is important to note that before 1913 these Senators were chosen by each States elected body not necessarily by general election. While congress has always been directly elected and always the origination of bills of appropriations.

The people are taxed and in return the people ask for stuff. The State which took the money with difficulty attempts to limit spending via the Senate which can only approve or deny an appropriations bill. Hence money collected with difficultly and spent with difficultly designed to naturally limit unnecessary spending.

Before 1913 taxes on Income (or any direct tax) was seen as unconstitutional because the Founders felt it was important for people to have a way to protest a government in the only meaningful way: deprive the government of income.

In addition the Founders were distinctly against a privately held central bank such as the Federal Reserve which was also approved in 1913. This has additionally provided the Federal government an essentially unlimited supply of money with which it can enforce any position without any realistic opposition of the individual States.

Post 1913 we can clearly see what happens in a democracy with the effective restraint on spending removed.

about 5 months ago
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Bloomberg To HS Grads: Be a Plumber

vovin Re:Joe the Plumber wasn't a plumber (368 comments)

In most parts of the USA you have to be a master plumber (~5 yrs on the job and pass your exams) to be a licensed plumber.

about a year ago
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Unlocking New Mobile Phones Becomes Illegal In the US Tomorrow

vovin Re:Establishes that you do not own your hardware. (475 comments)

StraightTalk is another great option. You can use the ATT or T-Mobile infrastructure (you choose when you order your sim). $45/mo unlimited (there is a 2Gb limit on your unlimited data).

You can get the T-Mobile from WalMart and use their 5GB w/100 voice minutes plan for $30/mo if you really don't use voice calling it's an even better deal.

(AFAIK StraightTalk is walmart brand of trac phone that contracts usage on ATT and T-Moblie networks).

My advice for *most* people is to buy the Google Nexus 4 outright and get a StraightTalk plan.
My advice for *data centric/only* people is to buy the Google Nexus 4 outright and get a WalMart/T-Mobile plan.

about a year ago
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I double check my spam filters ...

vovin Spam? (144 comments)

Please tell us of the mysterious thing you call 'spam'.
Where can one get this 'spam'?
Is there a place for FREE 'spam'?

about a year ago
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Fully Open A13-OLinuXino Single-Board Linux Computer

vovin Re:Anything with Mali-400 is a problem (111 comments)

It seems that Mali is trying to open up:

http://www.malideveloper.com/developer-resources/drivers/open-source-mali-gpus-linux-kernel-device-drivers.php

... provides the low-level access to the Mali-200 or Mali-400 GPU. An important, secondary component is the Unified Memory Provider (UMP) which can be used in a variety of ways to facilitate zero-copy operations within the driver stack. An additional component, the Mali Direct Rendering Manager (DRM), is provided to integrate the Mali DDKs into the X11 environment and for enabling the Direct Rendering Interface (DRI2).

Disclaimer: I don't have a Mali to play with so I can't say how well the driver works.

about a year and a half ago
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Samsung Hits Apple With 20% Price Increase

vovin Re:so the court costs.... (447 comments)

Perhaps just a coupon ... 10% off your next purchase of 200M Ax processors?

about a year and a half ago
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AT&T To Pay $700,000 For Overcharging Consumers

vovin Re:slightly OT but related: AT&T is an abusive (74 comments)

IF it's already on your credit report. You can NOT remove the mark by paying now.

If you pay now you are admitting guilt and enriching the collection company that bought the junk paper. AT&T already got paid by the collection agency when they sold the junk paper (your debt, aka the bill).

Your best recourse is to contact the credit agencies and have the disputed bill noted (for any agency that has it on their credit report).

For future reference, the only way to keep such crap off your report is to pay *before* it goes to collections and then demand the money be reimbursed. You may have to file a suit in small claims court.

about a year and a half ago
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Alan Cox to NVIDIA: You Can't Use DMA-BUF

vovin Re:Hmmm... (946 comments)

Most binary kernel modules are assumed to be 'not derived works' ... just 'cause nobody wants to argue about every little thing.
This assumption nature of derived was later refined and codified by the use of EXPORT which defines the Kernel ABI which can reasonably be presumed is common to to non-Linux kernels and GPL_EXPORT which defines a 'GPL ONLY' Kernel ABI which one would call specific to Linux. The presumption is then that a kernel module using a GPL_EXPORT feature is being *written for* Linux and not being *ported to* Linux.

In other words by DMA-BUF implies that NVIDIA is writing a driver *for* and not porting an existing driver (from Darwin or Solaris for example).

Here is a discussion of a similar situation http://lwn.net/Articles/73121/
Here one of Linus original statements on kernel modules: http://linuxmafia.com/faq/Kernel/proprietary-kernel-modules.html
And here is a more recent one: https://lkml.org/lkml/2003/12/3/228

My (hypothetical) opinion is that if NVIDIA where to show their driver on OSX and that the use of DMA-BUF was an insignificant architectural change then the would likely prevail as a non-derived work should they choose to go forward. If however the use of DMA-BUF would be a signficant architectural change then the non-derived argument would be not be easy to make.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Cell Phone Carrier In the US?

vovin Re:Service (375 comments)

You just have to fix your APN (Access Point Name).

On Android phones go to: Settings | More ... | Mobile Networks | Access Point Names

It's in the Straight talk FAQ for their apn (the use ATT network OR T-mobile network you have to pick when you buy the SIM).
See the att.mvno APN

The ATT APN is pretty easy to find.
The PTA is for people with the LTE SIMs
The wap.cingular is for people with 3G SIMs
The ATT stores do not have "technical" people in my experience. The sell ATT phones pre-configured for ATT SIMs and that is what they know.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Cell Phone Carrier In the US?

vovin Service (375 comments)

Bring your phone from korea. It will work on ATT. Get a pre-paid straight talk SIM but do NOT use over 2GB of data/mo. They have a very lame hard limit grrr.
If you have a penta-band (Galaxy Nexus is the only I know off hand) then the T-Mo options for a data lopsided plan is fine if you don't take voice calls (100 min/mo is designed to be too little, of course). But the 5GB of data is sweet, esp since it just gets throttled to edge if you pass it.
If you feel the need to overpay for your phone on a lame contract then pick any of the big 4. They all suck for the price the charge.

FYI: At $25/mo is break even for unlimited service in CONUS. If you pay anything more you should expect *something* right?

about a year and a half ago
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US Agricultural Economists Say Bacon Shortage Is Hogwash

vovin Re:I'll just eat sausage instead (137 comments)

Simple economics.
'Round here you can find the same grocer in the same city selling pork ribs from 1.59/lb to 3.99/lb depending on the part of the city. Spare ribs are cheap where the posh people are and expensive where poorer people are. The reverse is true for baby back ribs. Basically people prize what they are most familiar with.

A good country ham (salt cured and air dried) is excellent for making razor thin cuts (prosciutto-style) or soaking and roasting ... Often I find good ham is quite pricey when it's available.

Personally I will just some smoke my own pork pick nick or butt .. waaay cheaper than bacon and when done correctly the flavor profile is similar, or more intense, depending on which woods you use in your smoke.

about a year and a half ago
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Another EUSecWest NFC Trick: Ride the Subway For Free

vovin Re:same cards are used on the bus (135 comments)

In Hong Kong you can use the Octopus for most convenience and grocery stores as well. Room for serious abuse there. Yikes.

about a year and a half ago
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iPhone 5 Scorns Standards Promise To European Commission

vovin Re:My pet peeve... (543 comments)

Your Samsung Galaxy S3 also doesn't have a standard connector. It has a wonderful proprietary 11-pin connector that they can't legally call micro USB.

Huh?

They why does my S3 charge fine from my old blackberry charger? It also charges fine when plugged to Motorola car charger.

Weird.

about a year and a half ago
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iPhone 5 Scorns Standards Promise To European Commission

vovin Re:RTFA (543 comments)

The Samsung Galaxy S III doesn't charge from a microUSB port. It has an 11-pin monstrosity that looks like a microUSB port that they can't legally call a microUSB port.

Huh?

They why does my S3 charge fine from my old blackberry charger? It also charges fine when plugged to Motorola car charger.

Weird.

about a year and a half ago

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