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Life In Space, In More Than 12,000 Photos

waferbuster Awesome video. I wish I could see it in person. (24 comments)

Ok, so I watched the video twice, enjoying it immensely both times. It shows just how fragile that little slice of atmosphere is which shields us and allows us life. The soundtrack was was appropriate to the visuals, providing a sense of awe. And then, I come back to Slashdot, expecting to see respectful comments. Silly me, being surprised to find a bunch of wankers posting drivel. Come on, the video provides a sense of how humanity has impacted the viewing of our planet (note the nighttime shots which shows population density based on how we illuminate the night sky). How wonderful the aurora is, viewed from an angle few will ever see. Based on the existing comments, I weep for the future of our species. Based on the video, there is still hope.

about a month ago

Raspberry Pi-Powered Body Illusion Lets You Experience Parkinson's

waferbuster Re:There is a point to this (38 comments)

I think the simulation is an interesting idea... but it's a transient experience after which the participant will go back to being steady and 'normal.' Imagine going into a restaurant, ordering lunch, and then having the food shake and fall off your fork whenever you try to take a bite. Embarrassing? You bet! Demoralizing, knowing that this is going to continue for the rest of your life and only get worse? Yep.

Living with a disability sucks. Any project that increases awareness of how a disability can inhibit an otherwise coherent individual from doing everyday tasks (like buttoning a shirt), is worthwhile in my (not so uninvolved) opinion.

As for Rush mocking Michael J. Fox, Here's his response on NBC: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v... As Michael states in the video, without medication he'd be frozen (Google 'Parkinson's Frozen' to see what he means by that... it's pretty freaking scary). While I lean more towards Republican viewpoints than Democrat, I find Rush's insinuations in this instance distasteful, ignorant, and hurtful.

Robin Williams committed suicide during early stages of Parkinson's, possibly due to the idea of living with this disability for the rest of his life. Not having an entire foundation at my disposal, when I get to his stage of Parkinson's, I obviously cannot expect to have as finely tuned medication dosing as Michael has.

My goal is to live my life as well as I can, as long as I can. That's all any of us can do.

about 2 months ago

Raspberry Pi-Powered Body Illusion Lets You Experience Parkinson's

waferbuster Re:Why? (38 comments)

Sorry to break it to you, but Parkinson's symptoms are nothing at all like orgasm. Nope, not even close. I wish.

about 2 months ago

Raspberry Pi-Powered Body Illusion Lets You Experience Parkinson's

waferbuster Re:Will it allow improvement on the spoon? (38 comments)

I saw the spoon video, and I want one. Now. In the meantime, I use my unaffected left hand to hold the spoon. It's a compensating method that's free...

about 2 months ago

Raspberry Pi-Powered Body Illusion Lets You Experience Parkinson's

waferbuster Re:Na-na-na na-na (38 comments)

Ok, as a person with Parkinson's, this is the funniest first post I've seen in ages. I think I'm going to adopt this as my new motto. "I'm not low on Azilect, I'm just gettin' jiggy with it!"

about 2 months ago

WSJ: Google X Display Team Works Toward Bezel-Free Modular Displays

waferbuster Ya know what's harder than lining up the pixels? (56 comments)

You know what's harder than lining up the pixels perfectly on adjacent panels? Getting the brightness, contrast, color, and gamma matched. It's not as noticable when screens are separated on your desk, but put them side by side and all those little hot and cold spots are going to create a very noticable demarcation line at the seam.

about 4 months ago

Microsoft Defies Court Order, Will Not Give Emails To US Government

waferbuster I can't believe I'm saying this, but... (419 comments)

I think Microsoft is doing the right thing here. Did the feds forget to include the double-secret gag order with their request/demand? Proclaiming this demand far and wide is going to put it squarely in the public eye.

Not that I personally have anything to worry about, as I always assume people are reading my emails. And being bored to tears by them.

about 5 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Are AdBlock's Days Numbered?

waferbuster Re:NoScript (731 comments)

About 5 years ago when NoScript was relatively small and unknown, I donated some money to the author. He sent me a very nice thank you reply. Honestly, Adblock and Noscript work so well, that it's a shock when I see sites on other peoples computers. Of course, I always turn off the "limited advertising allowed" checkbox in Adblock settings.

There are a few sites that I care enough about (liliputing.com for example) to whitelist them. I don't click on their ads, but their advertising is subdued enough to avoid being obnoxious.

1 year,9 days

How long do your computer mice last?

waferbuster Re: meeses (361 comments)

My main desktop PC has two mice from the MX-5500 keyboard/mouse set. These are the ultra-rare MX mice with bluetooth built in. They're so special that, while you can order the dongle or the keyboard as a repair part, the bluetooth mouse itself is not available as a repair part. Luckily, I was able to find a spare keyboard/mouse/dongle in mint condition at my local goodwill store. I have both mice on my desk, one in use and the other in the charging station. When the in-use mouse stops working, I swap the two mice. Honestly, I don't know why Logitech never figured out that selling a comfortable bluetooth mouse might be profitable... Check out the eBay listings for the MX-5500, it's crazy what people will pay for these!

about a year ago

My favorite season:

waferbuster Any season but summer (346 comments)

I live in Phoenix Arizona. Any season but summer would be fine with me. A while back I bought a BBQ meat thermometer to measure the temperature of the seats in my car. The LCD on the meat thermometer couldn't handle the heat. In the early part of summer, the seats (where I put my delicate hiney) measured out at 197F. I keep a set of insulated gloves in the center console, so that I can hold the steering wheel with more than just my fingernails without getting burned.

Like I said, any season but summer!

about a year ago

I use spinning-drive storage media ...

waferbuster OS on SSD, media on HDD (232 comments)

All of my computers boot and have their frequently used programs stored on SSDs, for maximum responsiveness. However all of my media is stored on a my server in an array of spinning WD Red drives (10TB, yeah baby!). With gigabit ethernet, I have no problems streaming the media as needed.

Each type of storage has it's strong and weak points... the key is to use them appropriately.

about a year ago

Tim Cook May Not Know Why, But Samsung Is Winning in China

waferbuster Re:I was in China last month, and asked... (327 comments)

I have to agree with this... When my girlfriend broke her iPhone 4, she tried to decide which phone to get. Basically, it came down to the iPhone 5 (with it's tiny screen) or the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 (with it's ginormous screen). She ended up with the Note and was happy, especially after all her friends were jealous. After all, creating envy in friends is one of the prime purposes of a premium phone!

about a year and a half ago

Half a Billion PCs To Ship In 2013, As Desktops and Laptops Dip But Tablets Grow

waferbuster Re:Hooray for the PC market! (223 comments)

Your post was made in jest, but my mom used to keep her box of wine on top of the desktop PC. It put the dispenser at just the right place to refill her glass without moving from the keyboard. She liked her Chillable Red slightly warm, so it was perfect for her.

It took me a while to figure out why her CD drive drawer wouldn't open, when the wine had dripped down and glued the door shut. When I went to upgrade her PC, the inside bottom of the case was a gooey purple color.

about a year and a half ago

Man Who Sold $100 Million Worth of Pirated Software Gets 12 Years In Prison

waferbuster Pirated software is everywhere in China (304 comments)

I lived in China for a while, and there's nothing discreet about the availability of pirated media. Every mall has at least one store right out in plain sight which is jammed with music and DVDs, all of which are ripped copies. It's out there in public, and nobody thinks anything about it. If you buy the movies which are currently in theaters, you'll often get to see silhouettes of folks who stand up in front of the camera in the theatre. Software? It's usually about 2 bucks for a disk. Photoshop? Microsoft Office? Windows Server? You name it, it's available for basically nothing. Of course, you have no way of knowing what trojans or viruses are installed along with the software...

There is *no* enforcement of of copyright in China. Now, what makes this case different from most China copyright cases is that that the guy left China, and sold to American agents. If he'd kept it inside China, he'd have been fine.

about a year and a half ago

NHTSA and DOT Want Your Car To Be Able To Disable Your Cellphone Functions

waferbuster This needs to be applied evenly (405 comments)

Most police patrol cars have multiple displays for the driver to easily read information (radar gun displaying speed of oncoming vehicles, license plate scanner scrolling information about the registration status of nearby cars, laptop, etc). If *my* car is going to be required to block any distractions while I am driving, then surely the public safety officers need to be similarly coddled and babysat.
This is a stupid idea.

about a year and a half ago

Most precise measuring tool I've used ...

waferbuster Laser interferometry position measuring system (328 comments)

For patterning wafers used in the semiconductor industry, we have to maintain absolute positional accuracy during stage motion in X and Y to within fractions of a nanometer. I suppose that counts as picometer measuring... Crazy system... moving an air-bearing stage a couple of feet in X and Y, while maintaining speed and position to those tight tolerances. It was amazing it worked as well as it did!

about a year and a half ago

'Connected' TVs Mostly Used Just Like the Unconnected Kind

waferbuster My TV is dumb as a box of rocks, the way I like it (217 comments)

While marketers are trying to upsell to the latest and greatest "Smart TVs," I have a very simple TV that's smarter than any "Smart TV":

1. Older (circa 2008 or 2009) Core2Quad PC, with VLC, XBMC, etc. There is a dual-tuner Hauppage tuner card installed, which is hooked to an external antenna. The mouse and keyboard are Gyromouse products, you just wave the remote around in the air to move the mouse cursor.

2. Epson 8350 HD Projector, mounted on the ceiling

3. 115 inch diagonal Grey screen (actually, a sheet of Formica-like laminate material mounted to the wall using 3M Command strips)

4. Carver 200WPC amplifier driving a pair of B+W Matrix 805 speakers. These speakers were great in the 90's and are still sounding incredible.

5. Carver Amazing Subwoofer. Awesome room shaking tight bass.

Note that the only part that was purchased specifically for video were the projector and the screen. Everything else was left over from previous projects and households. Heck, I've had the audio equipment since the early to mid 90s. If any one part gets obsoleted, I can upgrade for a minimal cost without trashing the entire system. For example when the new laser projectors come out next year, I may buy one to replace my existing projector.

I only have 2 remotes (3 if you include the wireless keyboard), one to turn on the projector and one that is the gyromouse for the PC. People have no problem using it, because "it's just like using a Windows PC". That's because it *is* a Windows PC with a fancy mouse-remote! There's really 3 parts to a smart TV:

1. Image: The high-resolution display with the best possible image quality

2. Sound: The audio equipment. Amplifiers and speakers that can reproduce the soundtrack with good fidelity and frequency response

3. The brains. In order to be truly a "Smart" TV, the software *must* be upgradable and *must* not be limited to what the TV manufacturer slaps together. The manufacturer has a vested interest in 'encouraging' people to upgrade to a newer model. Also, once a product is no longer being sold, how much engineering resources can reasonably be allocated to doing software patches and upgrades on the TV?

'Smart TV'? No, my TV will always be smarter because it's a general purpose PC with awesome sound and video attached.

about 2 years ago

Syria Drops Off the Internet Grid

waferbuster Netcraft confirms it... (156 comments)

Syrian internet is dead!

(Ok, I know it's overused... but in this case it could actually apply!)

more than 2 years ago

Laser Strikes On Aircraft Becoming Epidemic

waferbuster Re:Find a technical solution, not a legal "solutio (687 comments)

Welders use a sheet of LCD material, with a solar cell to power it. When they strike an arc, the solar cell powers the LCD, which darkens and protects their vision. Glasses could be made for aviators which include rapid polarizing ability based on a rapid change in the relative intensity of green light (in the range common to green lasers). This will protect the vision of the pilots. Alternatively, purchasing laser glasses which are designed to highly attenuate the green laser wavelength would help immensely. Come on, it ain't rocket science... jus' plain old planes and whirlybirds!

more than 2 years ago

US Military Designates Julian Assange an "Enemy of State"

waferbuster Re:Interesting (805 comments)

Him? Oh he's totally screwed. He'll be lucky to ever see daylight again in his lifetime, which may be prematurely shortened. Pissing off the people who make the rules is always a bad thing, especially if an example needs to be made.

more than 2 years ago


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