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Ask Slashdot: Where Can You Get a Good 3-Button Mouse Today?

zmooc Most people hold their mouse different (397 comments)

"(...) my hand categorically rejects two button mice â" the dangling ring finger causes me genuine physical discomfort (...)"

I recently noticed that a colleague that suffers from RSI and was in the process of trying different mouses holds his mouse different from what I do; I hold keep my ring finger and little finger both on the right side of the mouse, either stacked on top of each other or with both fingertips touching the desk surface. Mouse movement is controlled only using the thumb and the ring finger; the rest of my hand is normally not touching the mouse except for my finger tips. Forefinger controls the left mouse button, middle finger controls the right mouse button and the middle button/scroll wheel can be controlled by both fingers. I've always held my house that way and being a long time X-user, I have always used 3-button mice.

Having noticed that difference, I tried holding my mouse the way my colleague did: one finger for each button. This causes major strain in my hand (exactly the place where my colleague had troubles), probably because my fingers have different lengths. So I went around the office, asking people how the held their mouse and whether they had complaints. Turns out, most people held their mice in a way similar to how I do it. Those that didn't had more trouble with their hands.

I'm not saying you should switch hand-on-mouse position; everybody's different. However, you might want give it a try.

yesterday
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Fake Engine Noise Is the Auto Industry's Dirty Little Secret

zmooc Nothing new (790 comments)

I have that too. The radio in my 1995 Subaru sounds like a jet engine in tune with the engine revs. It's awesome.

3 days ago
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How Close Are We To Engineering the Climate?

zmooc Re:We already are (319 comments)

No no no no. We are not engineering the climate at all. We're just being human beings doing human being things like filling our biosphere up with CO2. We're just nature doing its nature thing.

We are making some attempts at engineering the climate, though, namely attempts at minimizing our CO2 output, but this has not had any real effect whatsoever.

It doesn't become engineering until you do it on purpose. We do not do that. Also note that it is nature until you start to "manage" or "engineer" it, at what point it stopt being nature and starts being "cultivated". Geo- and climate-engineering aim to finally destroy all nature by conserving it in an artificial way and thus making planet earth one big museum.

Just let nature be nature. Even if it destroys humanity. Nature doesn't need us, weed need nature.

about two weeks ago
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Over 30 Uber Cars Impounded In Cape Town

zmooc Re:Why stop with rides? (160 comments)

I think you don't get what Uber is up to. They don't care about the sharing part, they don't care about their drivers. They just want to get as big a market share as possible and they want you to have their app on your phone. And then ... they're going to wait.

Because what Uber understands is that in the near future we will not have drivers. We will not even have steering wheels. Or parking spots. Or traffic lights. Or people owning their own car. Or multiple lanes. We probably don't even have people that are allowed to drive a car. And we almost certainly will not have trains, subways or buses anymore. Instead We we all just be driven arounnd in a self-driving car owned by some big company. And Uber is planning to be that company.

about two weeks ago
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The Coming Decline of 'Made In China'

zmooc Re:Automated manufacturing (327 comments)

Some time ago I researched long-term trends in employment by sector in the Netherlands. Employment in all sectors is declining except for few: entertainment, hospitaliy, (medical) care, "sales", automation, recycling. I suspect the latter two to go into decline sooner or later as well. As long as we manage to prevent extreme concentration of wealth with the owners of the automated production there shouldn't be a real problem; we're all going to entertain each other and care for each other and sell each other stuff.

about three weeks ago
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Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

zmooc Re:Proof by assertion? (285 comments)

The party crashing into the rear was tailgating (or not paying attention). The party slamming the brakes apparently either failed to notice that someone was tailgating or chose to ignore it. Compare this to situations where one party runs the red light; in this situation the other party is completely innocent and did not have and serious option to prevent the crash.

about three weeks ago
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Out With the Red-Light Cameras, In With the Speeding Cameras

zmooc Bullshit (335 comments)

Oh there's the bullshit again. Red light camera's do increase safety. They may not decrease the number accidents but typically DO decrease casualties. But much more important, they reduce innocent victims. Instead of innocent people dying because some idiot slammed into the side of their car, we now mostly have 50% victims that either crashed into another car because they were tailgating and we have 50% victims that were incompetent drivers that failed to appreciate their surroundings, especially the idiot tailgating, and slammed the brakes in a panic.

Even if red light cameras would't increase safety, they would distribute casualties in a much fairer way, lowering the number of innocent victims and increasing the number of not-so-innocent victims. Red-light camera's increase effective self-determination.

about three weeks ago
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NASA 'Emails' a Socket Wrench To the ISS

zmooc Re:Plastic socket wrench? (152 comments)

Self-rotation. The amount of torque needed to rotate yourself is much lower than in typical gravity situations. More often than not, a wrench on earth is actually rotated by gravity pulling your body down. In space, you'd only pull yourself closer to the wrench.

about a month ago
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Study: Red Light Cameras Don't Improve Safety

zmooc Less fatalities? (285 comments)

Earlier studies consistently showed red light cameras resulted in less fatalities. And thus more injuries. I'm not convinced.

Furthermore, in rear-end collisions both parties are somewhat guilty. In T-bone crashes, typically only the one running the red light was clearly guilty. Therefore red light cameras result in a distribution of injuries that's fairer.

about a month ago
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Once Again, Baltimore Police Arrest a Person For Recording Them

zmooc Re:Fire the cops (515 comments)

And that was a consequence of deleting the evidence?

about a month ago
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Once Again, Baltimore Police Arrest a Person For Recording Them

zmooc Re:Fire the cops (515 comments)

Either you're replying to the wrong comment or you have a braintumor. wtf.

about a month and a half ago
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Once Again, Baltimore Police Arrest a Person For Recording Them

zmooc Fire the cops (515 comments)

Tampering with evidence, for example by deleting a recording, is punishable by up to 20 years in prison. While in this case the consequences were negligible, I suggest prosecuting these cops for tampering with evidence.

about a month and a half ago
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The Case For Flipping Your Monitor From Landscape to Portrait

zmooc Re:Line length and eye movement error (567 comments)

I've read that too, but it's not science and it's not correct. While it's true that after 80 columns or more people have more trouble "carriage returning" their eyes, which leads to the subjective idea that long lines are not efficient, it is not; the advantage of having longer lines nearly always outweighs the disadvantages of having more trouble skipping to the next line. Longer is better. Always.

Also, it's totally ridiculous we're having this discussion. HTML allows content to scale with the screen. Fixed column widths are ridiculous. They do serve a purpose, however: they hide the fact that most news items nowadays are in fact just oneliners:p

about a month and a half ago
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The Case For Flipping Your Monitor From Landscape to Portrait

zmooc Don't (567 comments)

So because web designers fail to properly design the web and thus leave me with ridiculously narrow columns, I should rotate my monitor? That's rubbish. Scientific research has shown again and again that we can read longer lines much more efficiently than we can read short lines, even though our subjective experience is often to the contrary. Just fix those websites and keep your monitor in landscape. Thank you.

about a month and a half ago
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Australian Target Stores Ban GTA V For Depictions of Violence Against Women

zmooc So what about the men?! (310 comments)

There quite a lot of violence against men in the game as well. Probably much more so than violence against women. Not too long ago, while I was playing Trevor, I was kidnapped by some guy who beat me up, drugged me, raped me in the ass and then left me naked and unconscious in the railroad tracks. So why isn't that a problem according to Target? Either Target is a bunch of sexist assholes or they believe women are fundamentally weak and in need of protection like this, which would make them ... o yeah. Sexist assholes.

By the way, I've never managed to really sexually assault a woman in the game. Is that even possible?

about 1 month ago
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Programmer Father Asks: What Gets Little Girls Interested In Science?

zmooc Poor girl (584 comments)

"larger society keeps forcing sexist stereotypes on her"

While that may be somewhat true, it's not the whole story. Babies only a few days old already display typical male or female interests that result in this girl wanting to be a princess. In countries where emancipation has come much further and woman and man are absolutely free to choose their jobs, they tend to pick (stereo)typical male or female jobs than in other countries!

Point is, a big part of gender-stereotypical behavior is not "learned". It is congenital. If you believe otherwise, please don't bother your child with it.

Also, please watch this awesome documentary on the subject: https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

about 2 months ago
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Is Chernobyl Still Dangerous? Was 60 Minutes Pushing Propaganda?

zmooc Re:Yes (409 comments)

Maybe it's just you that doesn't have Google.

Here's a properly readable source with proper links to somewhat less readable scientifically sound sources:

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/...

about 2 months ago
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Is Chernobyl Still Dangerous? Was 60 Minutes Pushing Propaganda?

zmooc Re:Yes (409 comments)

"it appears that humans are worse drain than the radiation"

Only if you look at photogenic large mammals like we always do. But nature is much more than that. Fungi, microbes, spiders and insects are doing very bad, so bad in fact that dead trees are hardly decaying. Birds have very small brains compared to birds from more healthy regions. And trees are not growing as fast as they should.

Bottomline: large parts of the natural cycle are not working and we don't know very well what the long term effects will be. What we DO know, is that abnormal amounts of flammable biomass is accumulating in the area. A forest-fire could cause huge redistribution of radioactive materials.

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: IT Career Path After 35?

zmooc Age doesn't matter (376 comments)

Age doesn't matter - I've had multiple rather old people on my team of software engineers. Age really doesn't matter.

However, as you get older and your knowledge and experience grows, you will get parasites. Instead of applying your knowledge and experience developing software like you used to, you will be answering all kinds of questions, performing little chores etc. because you happen to know how to because of your experience... to the point that you can no longer just be a software engineer. Research has shown that after each interruption it takes about 17 minutes to get back to the job. On average. For complex coding jobs, this time may be much longer and just a single question about something important but not directly related to your job may get you out of the flow for the rest of the day.

You may need to switch jobs to avoid this; once you start getting more than a handful of such requests that are not part of your coding job, run.

Also, consistently being an asshole may prevent this. But that's probably similarly detrimental to you career...

about 2 months ago
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Alva Noe: Don't Worry About the Singularity, We Can't Even Copy an Amoeba

zmooc Don't fear the singularity (455 comments)

I don't think the technological singularity - if there's such a thing - should be feared. You may, however, want to fear widespread pseudo/artificial/whatever intelligence. Or just call it plain automation. Because it's going to take your job well before there's a technological singularity. And the challenges that need to be overcome to get us there are much easier than copying an amoebe. You don't need to be able to copy an amoebe in order to be able to do just about anything a human does better than a human.

We don't need to be able to copy amoebes for technology to take over the jobs of the drivers of all kinds of vehicles, all logistics personell, most IT personell, most construction workers, most car mechanics, all fast food personell, most military personell. You name it. And we're getting there fast; in fact replacing all these people would not really be so much of a technological challenge; it's now simply a matter of economics.

Prepare for a job in entertainment, (health) care, science or automating the hell out of anything or be without one in a decade. For quite some time, humans may still compete on the job market with general purpose robots, maybe they always will, but those jobs will inevitably be plain dull; computer tells you what to do, you do it, repeat. And there's all the reason to fear that...

about 2 months ago

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