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Comment: Why decide now? (Score 1) 338

by Anubis IV (#49192811) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Should I Let My Kids Become American Citizens?

If your children are small and the deadline to sign the affidavit of support isn't until they're 18, as you said, wouldn't it make the most sense to simply put off the decision until:
A) They're nearing the age of 18, can weigh the pros and cons themselves, and can indicate their desire to you
B) There's an unanticipated but immediate use for it (e.g. war or natural disaster strikes Europe)
C) The situation changes such that the decision becomes clearer one way or the other (e.g. tax burden lessens, becomes harder for foreigners to work in America, etc.)

More or less, I don't see the urgency in making this decision now, rather than in a decade, and this sounds like the sort of decision that could very easily make itself for you if you simply give it enough time.

Comment: Re:And the escalation continues (Score 1) 448

Different situations call for different responses. It sounds like he made the appropriate response for this situation, but suggesting that "not feeding the trolls" is never the appropriate response is simply misguided. Quick examples from my own life, which I'd imagine are similar to what most of us have dealt with at some time or another...

Are they in it for the fun? Then make it boring as hell. Works great for 90% of Internet trolls. When I dealt with some run-of-the-mill bullying at a new junior high I moved to, simply not giving them any satisfaction was enough to make the bullying dry up in short order. Easy.

Are they doing it to exert control? Then show them they don't have control. The one and only time I was ever hit by someone, it was because he was using force in an effort to intimidate me since it had worked with others in getting him his way. Simply standing up after the hit, looking him square in the eye, and asking, "Are you done now?" before going back to my business was enough to keep him from ever bothering me again, since he didn't have a clue how to deal with me. In fact, we became friends after that, and to the best of my knowledge, mine was the last case of him attempting to bully anyone.

Are they taking because they can? Remind them of the consequences. When I had some drunk neighbors who let their party with underage students turn into an hour-long competitive shouting match (that's not a euphemism for them arguing loudly...they were actually shouting at each other for an hour to see who could do it loudest), I politely asked them at 2:30 AM to take it inside. They refused (and said some other not-nice things, as you might imagine). A quick noise complaint (I didn't mention the underage aspect to the cops) dealt with the problem and ensured it never came up again, since it helped them to see just how close they had come to a set of costly citations they couldn't afford.

There are other types of trolls/bullies/jerks out there, and there are numerous additional responses that may be necessary for dealing with them. Among those is responding in kind, but it is by no means the "only way", as you make it out to be.

Comment: Re:C++, C++, C++ (Score 1) 394

It only even exists because of the hipster mentality to "be different" just for the sake of being different with no real other point.

That's quite the revisionist history you have there, though I do agree with much of the rest of what you've said.

In truth, both languages saw their first releases in 1983 (though they had both been under development for a few years prior), both languages were being actively developed in parallel at that same time, and Objective-C was selected as the basis for NeXTSTEP back in the mid-80s, before the meteoric rise of C++ had yet begun in earnest. Given Apple's financial state in the late '90s, their desperate need for a new OS, and their past failure at building a new Mac OS themselves, they were forced into a position where they needed to purchase an OS from someone else. As such, their decision to purchase NeXT and use NeXTSTEP as the basis for what would become both OS X and iOS was born more out of desperation and an acute awareness of their precarious financial situation than out of a hipster mentality to "be different".

That said, I completely agree with your opinion regarding which language is the better one to learn. For all intents and purposes, Objective-C really is just single-vendor language, as you pointed out, and it's slowly being obsolesced by that vendor in favor of a different language, meaning there's an indefinite expiration date on its life. In contrast, C++ continues to be actively developed, and while it may be getting overshadowed a bit in more recent years, it's still strong and will doubtless still be alive and kicking for several decades to come.

Comment: Re:FDE on Android doesn't work as of yet (Score 2) 119

by Anubis IV (#49171975) Attached to: Google Backs Off Default Encryption on New Android Lollilop Devices

this is an acceptable tradeoff for an employer and this is an acceptable tradeoff for some people who really care about security, but it's really not acceptable for most consumers.

If it ever becomes the default on consumer phones, for liability reasons or for whatever, the first thing people will learn is how to disable it so they can save battery power.

The iPhone line has had this feature since the 3GS back in 2009, which seems to directly contradict all of the statements I quoted from you. When implemented properly, the battery drain and performance hit for FDE is demonstrably insignificant enough that it will go unnoticed by everyday consumers. The fact that iPhones continue to sell without the sorts of consumer outcry/consternation you're talking about is proof of that fact

The notion that this feature involves a massive trade-off was proven false 6 years ago. Why people are trying to make that claim now is beyond me, since we already have contradictory evidence to that claim.

Comment: Re:White balance and contrast in camera. (Score 1) 414

by Anubis IV (#49155529) Attached to: Is That Dress White and Gold Or Blue and Black?

This is one of the key aspects of the case. The color of the pixels in the image is clearly blue. That's irrefutable. We can do a quick color analysis to figure that out, as you did.

But, unfortunately, that doesn't answer the question of what color the dress itself is. Just because the picture shows it as blue doesn't actually mean it is blue, and there are numerous illusions, color correction issues, or optical afterimage effects that could cause something that actually is color A to appear as color B, either to the camera or to us.

I'm firmly in the "the dress appears blue and brown/black but is actually white and gold" camp. There are numerous highlights in the image that cause the true color to pop out from under the blueish pall that is over the whole thing. You can see a more true gold up on the right side of the collar and along the top edges of some of the ridges. Likewise, you can see a truer white in various places where the light hits it more directly. Whether it looks blue and brown because there's something blue behind the camera that is reflecting a blue pall over the dress, or it looks blue and brown because of the white balance being out of whack on account of the massive backlighting going on, I don't know, but there's plenty of evidence in the image to suggest the dress itself is white and gold, even if it doesn't immediately appear that way in the image.

Comment: Re:New design (Score 1) 90

by Anubis IV (#49147319) Attached to: 3D Printers Making Inroads In Kitchens

That's right. Beta has surrendered. Sanity has prevailed. We, the users, actually won.

We didn't win. They've hoisted the beta onto us under the guise of it being the old interface, but it's not. Tons of stuff is broken. Links are invisible. Sigs aren't working as expected. Widths of elements are all screwed up.

If you think we won, you need to stop reading what they're saying and start looking at what they're actually doing.

Comment: The real cause... (Score 3, Informative) 106

by Anubis IV (#49133989) Attached to: Argonne National Laboratory Shuts Down Online Ask a Scientist Program

Excised from the original reporting was this little snippet:

Representatives for NEWTON indicated that there were a number of reasons for the shut down of the program. When pressed to provide examples, the group sighed in unison before saying, "ELI5."

ELI5 is shorthand for the "Explain Like I'm 5" meme that has spread across the Internet in recent years. "We just can't compete with that," said one of the lead scientists in the program, referring to ELI5. "It used to be that we'd answer stupid questions from children because it encouraged the burgeoning scientists, mathematicians, and engineers to pursue their interests further, but with ELI5 teaching scientifically illiterate adults that it's okay for them to voice their stupid questions too, we simply can't keep up. We're spread too thin."

When asked where individuals seeking answers should go for help, one researcher derisively suggested, "The ELI5 subreddit." Asked what they planned to do with their newfound free time, the group cast a few despondent looks towards one another before collectively breaking down in tears as they wept for humanity.

Comment: Re:Why not in the US? (Score 2) 82

by Anubis IV (#49113491) Attached to: Apple To Invest $2B Building Green Data Centers In Ireland and Denmark

Given that the market is already oversaturated with supply, suggesting that the loss of a low-yield source will necessarily create a vacuum that must be filled is a rather disingenuous argument.

Specifically, dry farming is an inherently low-yield form of agriculture (and one which has a history of leading to dust storms and erosion in the areas where it's practiced, I'll add, since it eliminates ground cover), and the US already has a massive surplus of food supply each year (which is why we waste so much of it on useless stuff like corn for ethanol). Losing a single farm will almost certainly not have any sort of significant impact on the food supply, nor will someone set up a new, irrigation-based farm to deal with the loss of supply caused by this one's closure. Demand already outstrips supply. There will be no vacuum to fill.

On the other hand, demand routinely outstrips supply when it comes to power in California, and the excess power from this solar farm will supply enough for 60,000 homes. I'm not a huge proponent of clean power, but even I have to admit that keeping that many homes from having to use coal or similar sources would be beneficial.

Comment: Re:Why not in the US? (Score 1) 82

by Anubis IV (#49112003) Attached to: Apple To Invest $2B Building Green Data Centers In Ireland and Denmark

But why the hell not in the US? Somehow I smell shenanigan.

Umm...they're doing both. They announced a 2900-acre US-based solar farm almost two weeks ago. This announcement is following on the heels of that one and looks to be a bit larger in scale (possibly because they don't already have smaller facilities in Europe like they've had for awhile in the US?). There's no reason why they have to choose either the US or Europe when they have the resources to do both.

Comment: Re:Texas is a Republican state (Score 2) 149

Texas is about 60/40 Republican/Democrat at the moment. From 1848 to 1978, Democrats won Texas in all but 4 presidential elections, and Texas even had a Democrat (Ann Richards) as it's governor up until George W. Bush was elected in the mid-1990s. Texas' population is also among the fastest growing in the nation as a result of the high number of people relocating there from other states, suggesting that its demographics are likely to change over the next few years. As it is now, almost all of the urban centers (of which there are quite a few) lean Democrat, while the sprawling suburbs (of which there are also quite a few) lean Republican.

Suggesting it's "99.999% Republican" means that you've fallen for the rhetoric one side or the other is spewing.

Comment: Re:Net Neutrality (Score 4, Insightful) 112

by Anubis IV (#49092063) Attached to: AT&T Patents System To "Fast-Lane" File-Sharing Traffic

Part of it definitely isn't violating net neutrality, and the other part of it also isn't.

The first part is nothing more than a simple CDN. Basically, they identify popular files, cache them locally in subnets where they're popular, and then serve up the cached results in order to improve overall performance. That's a simple network optimization technique that provides data as quickly as possible without any regard for who you are or who's delivering the content. ISPs and CDNs already do this with everything from YouTube to Apple's software updates to Netflix to the DNS records for your blog. It in no way violates net neutrality.

As for the second part, it's also not a net neutrality issue, despite how it's being misrepresented to try and make it look like it is. There is no "fast lane". It's simply a method for engaging in more efficient multi-path/multi-source routing, which they already deal with on a regular basis with BGP. Basically, given multiple sources (i.e. peers) for the file that you're seeking, they'll connect you with the closest one. There's nothing contrary to net neutrality about preferentially selecting closer sources for the data you're requesting. If there was, then caching as a whole would be contrary to net neutrality, and that's clearly hogwash.

TL;DR: I read the article, and there is no "fast lane". All they're doing is caching and/or connecting you to the closest source for the data you've requested, both of which are done without regard for who you are or who is providing the content. These are common techniques already in widespread use for the last few decades. The only novel aspect of the patent is that it's "for P2P". *eyeroll*

Comment: Re:I asked AdBlock's creator those questions... ap (Score 1) 353

by Anubis IV (#49089289) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Most Useful Browser Extensions?


A) You look like a crazy spammer with your insane formatting, massive hyperbole, and numerous comments that seem to be frothing at the mouth. It's no wonder Palant stopped responding to you.

B) I never suggested people should use AdBlock. Quite the contrary, in fact, since I already pointed out that it wasn't particularly efficient and suggested that people should use an alternative to it. I know that reading my single sentence is asking a lot of you, but you might be advised to read it a bit more carefully next time before you make multiple comments, each of which has dozens of lines of inapplicable text that look to have been written by a madman.

C) Custom hosts files complement browser addons, rather than replacing them. I use both uBlock and a custom hosts file, and I'd encourage others to do so as well, since each handles various things better or differently than the other. For instance, hosts are more efficient and can prevent the ad server from ever getting my request, which addons sometimes can't do, but it can't remove the element from the page where the ad would have showed, whereas an addon can. Hosts files are also a bit more hands-on in keeping up-to-date than addons, but they have the benefit of working across any browser or Internet service on your computer, whereas addons are easier to keep up-to-date, but only work in the browser where they are installed.

TL;DR: Read more carefully, use both, and stop posting tirades. We'll all be happier, you included.

Comment: Re:maybe we should (Score 1) 576

Where do you think he's getting all of these ideas for spaceships, cars, and hyperloops? With a name like "Elon Musk", he's not even trying to fool anyone. No way that name originated on planet Earth!

Really, it's pretty obvious that he's here to soften us up in preparation for an invasion. He's used his alien technology (a "software update" to improve 0-60 performance? yeah right!) to win over thousands of Teslacolyte converts already, with more joining his religion every day. His spaceship company is poaching the top talent from NASA, who otherwise would have been our best defense against alien attack. His electric cars can be crippled via software update and, if allowed to further propagate, will eventually lead to a reduction in our current fuel infrastructure that is outside of their control. Now he's talking about making whole-home batteries, meaning he could cripple all of our homes instantly too. And stuff like his hyperloop concept? It'll be used to get us to turn on each other as we fight over whether or not to accept the aliens and their promises of technological advancement.

Hyperloop in one tentacle, and a ray gun to betray us in the other. Just you wait and see.

"I'm not afraid of dying, I just don't want to be there when it happens." -- Woody Allen