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Official: Microsoft To Acquire Nokia Devices and Services Business

wandazulu Re:Hmm... (535 comments)

So is Elop a raging idiot who runs companies into the ground out of incompetence or rather a stealthy hitman who failed his missions inside Adobe and Juniper? I'm inclined to believe the latter.

What would have been his mission at Adobe and Juniper? To sell them to McDonalds?

about a year ago

Is the Wii U Already Dead?

wandazulu Meh. (403 comments)

My family and I considered getting one for Xmas, but as others and TFA points out, there weren't any games we were interested in. I appreciate that Nintendo always seems to make Zelda and Metroid games "right", but any guesses as to when there will be a Wii U Zelda? Also, didn't they say they were rebooting Zelda, so that makes more more willing to hold off.

Heck, I (might) get it for Mario Kart, but no, gotta wait for that too. Maybe when Zelda and Mario Kart is available I'd get a used Wii U, as I'm not sure I'd care enough to even splurge for a new one; the kids have already pretty much moved on to other things (especially LBP on the PS3) in addition to various iOS games. Geez, they're not even teenagers and they already see Nintendo games as "retro".

about a year and a half ago

NewEgg: Installing Linux Breaks Laptop

wandazulu So give a Linux hardware company some love (518 comments)

System 76 will sell you a Linux-based laptop, as well as other companies (don't have additional links offhand) that take regular hardware (Lenovo, Dell, etc.) and will install Linux on it, and support it. At this point I buy hardware only from companies that support exactly what I want (e.g. MacOS, Apple, Linux, System76). Maybe I'm getting old (git off ma lawn!) but tracking down bleeding edge drivers for this and that equipment has ceased to be any fun; I want my machine to start up, get to a desktop, so I can do *my* stuff.

more than 2 years ago

Kevin Bacon Meets Wikipedia With New Pathfinding Program

wandazulu Re:Poor Use of Resources (50 comments)

I don't know what these folks are doing, but I wrote a sort-of-similar-but-not-really system that uses Wikipedia data and all you need is the "pages" and "pagelinks" tables, which you then load into your own mysql database; no touching of the actual site is necessary (and allowed; they have some strict rules about spiders and you can get your IP banned for abuse).

more than 2 years ago

The Sounds of Tech Past

wandazulu One sound Gen-X'ers may remember (231 comments)

Two words:

1. Filmstrips
2. Beep

(For all you whippersnappers on my lawn, instead of watching actual movies, we'd watch essentially a roll of slide film that was projected, and the accompanying audio, on either tape or LP, would have the narrator pause, then a "BEEP" was made to indicate it was time for the oh-so-important (*cough*) member of the AV squad (only person who could be trusted to load the projector properly) to advance one frame).

more than 2 years ago

Camera Gun Would Let Hunters Get Killer Wildlife Shots

wandazulu Specific Solution for Specific Situation (263 comments)

I'll bet that the brothers did not consider this for anything other than for the game hunter, where it would not be out of place. Any other situation and I'd guess they'd say "uh, why not just use a regular camera?"

more than 2 years ago

TSA Makes $400K Annually In Loose Change

wandazulu I believe it (289 comments)

I pick up every coin I find and put it in a large jar. Once it's full I take it to the bank and, though it really upsets the teller to have to deal with it, I end up netting around $300. Granted it takes a few years, but every little bit helps. :\

more than 2 years ago

Are Brain Teasers Good Hiring Criteria?

wandazulu Gotta dance (672 comments)

To quote Bob Fosse: I don't want people who want to dance; I want people who *need* to dance. That is what I look for during an interview, someone who clearly loves what they do and doesn't just sit around waiting for orders or just did whatever was told of them. I typically ask them about a project they were on, and if they get into the details, even if it's not exactly specific to programming but that they understand the "big picture", as well as their role in it, and look to see the eyes light up. It's especially Then I move on to the question that a lot of people don't expect, surprisingly, but is very telling: "What got you into programming?" Any flavor of "because it's really really cool" works; sadly a lot of responses are "it was either this or becoming a lawyer | dentist | whatever".

more than 2 years ago

Big Brother Calls 'Shotgun' In Illinois

wandazulu One thing not mentioned.... (475 comments)

I have an ipass, and it's entirely hidden by the rear-view mirror; if there was in fact a camera, all it would capture is the back (front?) of the mirror. As I recall, the installation instructions specifically suggested that spot as being the most unobtrusive.

more than 2 years ago

PostgreSQL 9.1 Released

wandazulu Not Sqlite (148 comments)

Just one small nitpick...sqlite is really meant as an embedded database into an application, it's not a full-fledged database like any of the others mentioned (it doesn't have networking, for example). I suppose you could be scaling up from an embedded sqlite db, but that suggests your application has gotten so big that an external database is necessary.

It's also one of the backing store options for Apple's Core Data framework.

more than 2 years ago

Hurricane Irene Prompts Unprecedented Evacuation of NYC

wandazulu Working during Nor'Easter at the WTC (395 comments)

I was working in World Trade Center #1, on the 95th floor, during the nor'easter of 1992, which if I recall was the remains of a hurricane. It was quite an intense experience; we had the space-saving "rolling file cabinets" that were rolling back and forth on their own, with one finally derailing and spilling files onto the floor (guess who had the job of cleaning it up). Bathroom stall doors were opening and closing by themselves, you could hear a definite creaking from inside the walls, and they were always shutting down the express elevator due to flex.

The thing that was really wild, though, and sadly not to be seen again, was looking out the window and being able to easily make out the other tower swaying as well. I had to keep telling myself "the buildings are designed for's okay!" until it was time to go home.

more than 2 years ago

Oracle Announces Java SE 7

wandazulu Re:Ubuntu (204 comments)

Funny enough, I just set up an Ubuntu box and decided to grab JDK 7 without knowing that today would be the day it was "released". As such, I downloaded it directly from Oracle/Sun/Java/Whatever..

Note, I then installed Eclipse Indigo, which was having some problems with some of the plugins. I added the following line to the eclipse.ini file and the problems went away:


Everything's working fine now.

about 3 years ago

World's Best Chess Engine Outlawed and Disqualified

wandazulu How can you be sure it's identical? (315 comments)

Note: I have absolutely no position on this issue; I am not taking sides at all. My only question is how you can be certain that two programs are identical when you presumably don't necessarily know how each was compiled. Assuming all you have of rybka is a binary, but have the source to fruit, how could you be certain that you could get the code to compile in such a way as to produce identical assembly as disassembled rybka. Assuming a general standard IA32 machine, you still presumably have a lot of opportunities for variation in output from compiler to compiler, version to version, and even flags to flags.

I restate that I have no horse in this particular race; I've read of similar scenarios where a program was discovered to be a clone of another, and I've never understood how they can tell.

more than 3 years ago

Linus' Other Gift to the World

wandazulu SHARE (177 comments)

Considering it's IBM's 100th birthday, it should be pointed out that a lot of the concepts TFA talks about were being done by groups like SHARE long before Linus was even born.

more than 3 years ago

IBM Turns 100

wandazulu The things IBM made... (189 comments)

I worked for a large organization in Chicago that had the "gold" IBM support contract back in the early 90s; they would show up at 2 am Sunday morning to replace a keyboard if necessary. Our main contact was a guy who had been with the company for 30+ years and he would mention some of the things he'd had to fix, in addition to the standard computer stuff: scales for weighing meat in the meat packing district and the thing that was most surprising: the clock on the Wrigley Building. Apparently IBM didn't actually out-and-out make the clock mechanism but had bought some company that had and they inherited the support contract. He mentioned having to get some gears specially made when it broke down.

The thing I thought was so ahead of its time was the wireless device he had that was essentially a large, two-line blackberry that he'd carry on his shoulder with a strap; it would beep and he'd flip the cover open, read the message, then type some sort of response. I remember he'd use it to order parts and within an hour(!) another guy would show up with them, a new ps/2 mouse, a monitor, or a reel-to-reel tape drive for the as/400. I was surprised IBM never thought to market that device; much like Apple is reluctant to talk about their ipod touch-based POS terminals, he wasn't too keen about showing it off or even talking about it.

more than 3 years ago

Could Apple Kill Off Mac OS X?

wandazulu Where would all the content come from? (577 comments)

Apple just recently announced Final Cut Pro X, they've revamped XCode, and they're heavy into LLVM and clang. Doesn't seem like they're ditching the Mac any time soon. An iPad with iMovie is fine, just like Garageband is fine (and a lot of fun to use!), but for my next $100 million dollar blockbuster, I'm going to want more robust tools.
All the content consumed on an iphone, ipad,etc., has got to originate from somewhere, and I think apple would be happy to have both ends of the spectrum: the content producers and the content consumers.

more than 3 years ago

Mac Malware Evolves - No Install Password Required

wandazulu The difference (374 comments)

So instead of installing into /Applications, which does require an admin username and password, it now likely installs somewhere in the user's home folder, which doesn't require admin authorization. This means the problem would be isolated to that particular user's account.

more than 3 years ago

Verifying Passwords By the Way They're Typed

wandazulu Re:Michael Crichton had this idea in the 80s (140 comments)

Funny...I was just going to post this, but thanks for reminding me of the name. As I recall, it was a short story (I want to say I read it in Life, of all places), about a "hot shot" programmer who ignores another, older, programmer who wants to show him this cool new tech he's been working on. Suffice to say the hot-shot programmer gets seduced into selling the company secrets and, this is the part I remember most vividly, does it in a motel room, using a modem, and while he's waiting wanders down the hall to the coke machine.

He gets into hot water when the "secrets" turns out to be pictures of kids or something, and the older guy and the boss tell him that he's not only fired, but probably will have to sell the fancy car he bought to pay back the guys he was trying to sell the secrets to. Suffice to say, the way he's caught is that he didn't type the password in the "right" way, just like TFA (presumably...didn't pay to read it) mentions, and gets caught in a honey pot.

The weird thing is that I have never forgotten the idea of being identified by how you type, and every time I use the keyboard that story just flashes in and out, after all this time.

more than 3 years ago

Hypertext Creator: Structure of the Web 'Completely Wrong'

wandazulu Re:The Xanadu Project? (357 comments)

What's worse is that they did release something that they themselves said was essentially a watered-down, "test" application (sorry, can't remember its name). It made Lotus Notes seem like Notepad by comparison; if that was the "watered down" version of Xanadu, then it seems clear that Xanadu is something only this guy would be able to fully understand...or use.

more than 3 years ago

New Chili Is World's Hottest

wandazulu Um...yum? (201 comments)

Given the protective gear necessary to handle these peppers, I'm assuming they aren't going to be available to the home consumer at the local co-op. Even if the home consumer got ahold of one of these, it seems like its mere presence in the kitchen would render chili and salsa essentially inedible; what would I do with one of these, really?

more than 3 years ago



Duke Nukem Has Gone Gold

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  more than 3 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "According to Ars: " is a grand day: Duke Nukem Forever has gone gold.

"Duke Nukem Forever is the game that was once thought to be unshipppable, and yet here we are, on the precipice of history," said Christoph Hartmann, president of 2K. "Today marks an amazing day in the annals of gaming lore, the day where the legend of Duke Nukem Forever is finally complete and it takes that final step towards becoming a reality.""

Link to Original Source

Apple Kills XServe

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  more than 3 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "According to a document provided by Apple, they will no longer be selling XServes after January, 31, 2011, recommending instead to buy a Mac Mini or a Mac Pro with Snow Leopard Server installed."

London Times Loses Almost 90% of Online Readers

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  about 4 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "According to The Guardian, the Rupert Murdoch-owned Times has lost almost 90% of its online readership compared to February since making registration mandatory in June,"

SAP buys Sybase

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  more than 4 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "German business software maker SAP AG has agreed to buy Sybase Inc. for $5.8 million dollars, as SAP continues its rivalry with Oracle.

I'll always have a fondness for Sybase; my first real programming job was working with Sybase System 10 on AIX."

Google recovers all usage loss since spring

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  more than 4 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "If the last two months should be interpreted as Microsoft suggests, with Bing's gradual ascent in usage share against Google as a sign of Bing's inevitably catching up, then a similar interpretation of September's numbers from live analytics firm StatCounter should be taken as a sign of Bing's ultimate demise. A sampling of five billion or more US page views from Web sites accessed by StatCounter in September reveals that, of the world's top three search services, Google's usage share has climbed back just above 80%, and is flirting with last November's peak of 81.14% — meaning Google is back to serving four out of five US-based general queries."
Link to Original Source

Autodesk vs Reseller: Autodesk loses

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  more than 4 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "According to an article at OSNews, Autodesk cannot stop a user from reselling a legitimate copy of Autocad on eBay. The judge in the case said that software was a product to be sold, not licensed. The judge wrote in his opinion "Although Autodesk would no doubt prefer that consumers' money reaches its pockets, that preference is not a basis for policy.""

New C++ standard delayed until 2010 or later

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  about 5 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "At the end of an article written by the creator of C++ where he talks about removing a feature from the new C++ standard, he drops a bombshell: The new C++ standard (typically referred to as C++0x) has been delayed until 2010 or later. What does this mean? No new C++ features like threads, proper enum classes, or hash tables. C++0x is dead, long live C++1x!."

Mama, they're taking my Kodachrome away

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  more than 5 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "Kodak has announced that they will stop making the venerable Kodachrome film, after 74 years. While digital has clearly eclipsed the film industry, only Kodachrome was proven to be the medium that could keep its color for decades, while still being viewable to anyone who could hold the slide up to the light."

Unix Turns 40

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  more than 5 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "Forty years ago this summer, Ken Thompson sat down and wrote a small operating system that would eventually be called Unix. An article at ComputerWorld describes the the history, present, and future of what could arguably be called the most important operating system of them all."

Microsoft Won't Offer SP1 of Vista to Everyone

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  more than 6 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "If Vista detects that your system might have a problem with SP1, it won't offer to install it through Windows Update — but it won't tell you that the patch has been blocked either. APC Magazine asked Microsoft why the service couldn't be more informative, and the answer wasn't pretty"
Link to Original Source

wandazulu wandazulu writes  |  more than 7 years ago

wandazulu (265281) writes "Objective C has Cocoa, C# has .NET, Java has its packages, and every scripting language has an extensive library of functionality for handling things like XML, HTTP, encryption, regular expressions, etc. So why is there no likewise unified library of functionality for C++? At this point I can pretty much count on having a standard template library for any C++ compiler I use on any platform, but that provides basic functionality, like containers and strings. Why is it that I have to write my own socket-based routines for getting a web page, or hashing a string, etc.? So why is there no unified framework for C++? Is it because it's not "owned" by a particular organization or person? Has anyone even attempted to create a library to rival Java's or Ruby's or Perl's or Python's...."


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