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Comment: Re:And what's the problem? (Score 1) 407

So, I specifically said state universities would be free to those who qualify. If someone wanted to go to a private institution they could certainly go into crippling debt in order to attend if they so chose.

And, really, I probably wouldn't care much if more people went to university, even if they weren't really qualified. People spending more time in school isn't a bad thing.

And further, I'm sure "the market" will fend for itself when it comes to filtering out idiots; it's just that people won't have crippling student loan debt that will make them so desperate for work that they'll be willing to let their employers bend them over in order to accept a shitty, low paying job.

Actually, the more I think about it, the more I like it - employers would actually have to offer something in order to attract workers because the workers won't be desperate anymore. I've known people who've taken very, very shitty jobs and worked in abusive environments for years out of fear of losing their health insurance or being unable to pay for school loans - that's pretty fucked up.

Comment: And what's the problem? (Score 3, Insightful) 407

I say guarantee basic services (phone, basic cable, broadband), basic accommodations (place to live, food), and basic health (medical insurance) for those who need it. Provide life and job skills classes open to anyone who wants to attend. Make state university free of charge for those who qualify (via academic track record and testing), vocational training (plumbing, culinary, whatever) free for those who don't qualify for university.

Spread the housing across a given community, rather than concentrating it in one place, to prevent things like a project mentality and generational poverty mindset.

It would be vastly less expensive than the costs we pay for police, prison and emergency services, safer for everyone else, and overall reduce human suffering.

Most people would be happy to work an actual job and pay taxes in order to have "better than the bare minimum" for all of the above and the ability to do things like have food that isn't just staples, go on vacation, have more living space, etc.

For people who don't want more, or who can't work for more, at least this would keep them off of the streets to some extent, and keep them from getting so desperate they resort to crime just to survive.

I have zero problem with my taxes going to pay for such things because, not being an idiot, I'm aware that the alternative (what we have right now) is VASTLY more expensive by pretty much every metric.

Comment: other families of solutions (Score 1) 496

by rlseaman (#49747703) Attached to: The Brainteaser Elon Musk Asks New SpaceX Engineers

There are other ways of looking at the problem:

"You're standing on the surface of the Earth. You walk one mile south, one mile west, and one mile north. You end up exactly where you started. Where are you?"

Other posters have pointed out that "Where are you?" is ambiguous and could mean a Simon says sort of answer like "I'm in your office, Mr. Musk." And also that it could be taken to mean relative to a Sun-centered coordinate system. This latter requires waiting N years to return to the same part of the Earth's orbit.

Once one notices that no time limit is required you get many more solutions by allowing for the polar motion over some period of time: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P... - that is, the pole isn't in the same place at the end as at the beginning.

Then there's the notion of repeating the exercise at the north and south magnetic poles (and perhaps geomagnetic). But there is also no explicit constraint that south, west and north are all interpreted the same - they need not all be geographic or all magnetic. In that case there are families of solutions near each of the four poles that interpret the initial motion one way and the final mile the other.

And then the magnetic poles wander much more rapidly (several miles per year) than the geographic poles and over much more than the mile allowed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Magnetic_Pole), so you can put constraints on the time period allowed for the exercise while exploring solutions covering motions over a few weeks.

Comment: Well, if you really have to code on the bus... (Score 1) 99

Didn't tethering fees get clobbered by the FCC? The IDE is pretty light on bandwidth, the initial pageload is about 2 MB and it's just shuffling text around during use. It has a keep-alive ping, but otherwise you're only going to use bandwidth while saving changes or using the terminal. How much bandwidth does a terminal use? I recently signed up with PTel, which uses T-mobile's towers and gives you unlimited 3g / 1 GB 4g for $35/mo, no contract. I think a month's worth of coding would run substantially under 1 GB of bandwidth but I don't really have the time to do a rigorous test.

I found interpreters for Python and Brainfuck on the Chrome Store, and of course you have a JS interpreter, and any interpreters written in JS should probably work. There are rather a large number of those for some reason. There's some sort of git app too, FWIW. Beyond that there are a few Android apps that will run natively on ChromeOS without any fussing, and most Android apps can be made to run with minimal effort.

I don't know what you're coding in, but unless it's fairly obscure I'd say it's possible to code and test, offline, using a Chromebook. Either way I hope no one is twisting your arm to get you to buy one.

Comment: Internet is Ubiquitous (Score 1) 99

If a quick Google search can be believed, you can actually get a free VPS. For an IDE I'm using Cloud9, but there are equally good or better alternatives. However, I am already paying for mobile data and a VPS for other reasons. Even so, I'd still probably get out my laptop on a bus only if it was a Google bus. Or maybe Greyhound, if it had wifi. I very rarely find myself without an Internet connection, even in rural Central America. When I don't have an Internet connection, generally I'm not doing anything where I care about having one.

It's not even that I couldn't code without the Internet; there are code editors for Chrome/ChromeOS. However, not having access to API documentation would be a huge issue (for my work), and that would make OS deficiencies a moot point.

I need the Internet for work. Having to have a net connection in order to use a decent IDE is not ideal, but it's a low bar even in rural Central America, or rural Alaska. I don't really understand what it is about the idea of an Internet-only device that bothers you so much, but I am actually pretty sure that you would be less inconvenienced than you imagine.

Comment: ChromeOS (Score 2) 99

My first impression was, "WTF?! Why would anyone want to do that?" Keep in mind that not only am I typing this on a Chromebook, I basically live on this thing. For what I use it for, it works well. With a web based IDE and an SSH client, you can accomplish almost anything. Entertainment is not a pleasant situation but that's what we have gaming PCs for, right?

ChromeOS does actually have some nice features. It's nice to have updates that only take fifteen seconds, including a full reboot. The battery life is great, and it's really cool to be able to sit down at a brand-new Chromebook, type your google username and password in, and have all of your bookmarks, apps, and files available within 30 seconds. The thing is, I really don't think you're going to be able to get those same features with any other combination of hardware and software. As you point out, the boot speeds are likely not going to be any faster, and I would be surprised to learn that the non-Google versions of ChromeOS had the same, ah, vendor lock-in.

I'm very ambivalent about ChromeOS. It looks nice, it's very secure, it has a number of good features, and I feel like it is particularly good for schools. I've been able to make my Chromebook do what I want, and having a pair of them was really great for wandering around Central America for a year or so doing freelance web development. They're cheap enough to be more-or-less disposable. On the other hand, it's very much not a replacement for a real operating system. The good thing is that it sounds like the OP doesn't need a real operating system. The bad thing is that he probably isn't going to get what he likes about ChromeOS out of this either, no matter what he does. A stripped-down distro is probably the better option.

As an aside, I also share your sentiments with regards to the swapping issue. I've had a bunch of netbooks in addition to this Chromebook, and I've had real Linux running on this machine via both crouton and a direct install. With ChromeOS, I can only have 30-40 tabs open before it starts killing tabs to free up memory, and fewer than that if the pages are resource-heavy like gmail, disqus threads, or videos. In my experience ChromeOS has far more memory issues than other distos on the same or worse hardware. However, I will say that ChromeOS's failure mode of killing pages early and often works very well to prevent the machine from ever becoming unresponsive due to memory/swap issues. It's kinda hard to pick between those two problems, to be honest.

+ - UMG v Grooveshark settled, no money judgment against individuals

Submitted by NewYorkCountryLawyer
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: UMG's case against Grooveshark, which was scheduled to go to trial Monday, has been settled. Under the terms of the settlement (PDF), (a) a $50 million judgment is being entered against Grooveshark, (b) the company is shutting down operations, and (c) no money judgment at all is being entered against the individual defendants.

Comment: Re:One (Score 1) 301

I'm sure there are PC laptops that have great track pads, but the software implementation is really a huge part of what makes a pad good. Features things like two-finger right click, and swipe gestures really make the pad great. The sensitivity and physical size and feel of the Apple pad are superior to most of the track pads I've used so far. At least most track pads have ditched the pad+two button design now.

Half-Life 2 Writer on VR Games: We're At Pong Level, Only Scratching the Surface 125

Posted by Soulskill
from the just-wait-until-we-get-to-pitfall-level-VR dept.
An anonymous reader writes: Valve's Chet Faliszek has been in the video game industry for a long time, and his writing has been instrumental for games like Half-life 2, Portal, and Left 4 Dead. Valve is now developing a virtual reality headset, and Faliszek was on hand at a VR-centric conference where he spoke about how the technology is coming along. He said, "None of us know what the hell we are doing. We're still just scratching the surface of VR. We still haven't found out what VR is, and that's fine. We've been making movies in pretty much the same way for 100 years, TV for 60 years and videogames for 40. VR has only really been [in development] for about a year, so we're at Pong level." One of the obstacles holding VR devices back right now is getting the hardware up to snuff. Faliszek says, "There's one thing you can't do and that's make people sick. It has to run at 90 frames per second. Any lower and people feel sick. Telling people they will be ok 'Once you get your VR legs' is a wholly wrong idea. If people need to get used to it then that's failure."

Comment: Re:One (Score 1) 301

I used to think all trackpads were terrible, then I used one that actually worked well and haven't used a mouse on a laptop since.

Which trackpad did you like? We give our staff the option of running windows 7 or OS X on their MacBook Pros at work. Most of the staff that uses Windows ends up plugging in a mouse because the track pad support for the Apple pad is AWFUL and generally busted. Under OS X the support is amazing. I think the Apple track pad is the best designed track pad I've ever used. The gestures are great and the *actual* tracking is excellent.

Comment: Gitmo(tm) brought to you by the GOP (Score 1) 336

by Tenebrousedge (#49522245) Attached to: Update: No Personhood for Chimps Yet

Why bother lying about Gitmo? I mean, yes, it's useful as an extraterritorial prison, but attributing its continued existence to Obama is bizarrely counterfactual.

Obama issued orders to close Gitmo in 2009. Congress fought back with appropriations bills. The GOP has been and continues to be hugely critical and combative with Obama's attempts to close the detention camp. Romney was openly supportive of it, and a Republican Senator has said the Gitmo detainees can "rot in hell". Are you just completely ignorant of everything that has happened until this point, or are you arguing the President should just ignore the law, Congress, Republicans, and 53% of the country and close it anyway?

Comment: Re:DIR 868L (Score 1) 107

by Tenebrousedge (#49514909) Attached to: D-Link Apologizes For Router Security

Ironically, the 868L is listed as having the second-highest throughput on the page you linked. It's very strange that mine isn't working correctly. Maybe alternate firmware will help things. The desktop and the ISP-supplied Actiontec get 890 Mbps on speedtest.net, and it's not like PPPoE is computationally expensive. Thanks for the link, it was informative, depressing, and hope-inspiring all at the same time.

Comment: DIR 868L (Score 1) 107

by Tenebrousedge (#49511391) Attached to: D-Link Apologizes For Router Security

I have a DIR-868L, it was cheap(-ish) and reviews suggested it had good (unobstructed) wireless speeds. That may well be the case, but unfortunately it has a more serious flaw, only being able to handle about 350 Mbps of my gigabit connection. I'm pretty sure the hardware is capable, but the firmware is crippled. I've already RMA'd one and got another back with the same symptoms. Apparently D-link engineers are trying to reproduce this issue, but I don't really expect them to do anything about it.

So, I'm looking for a little advice here on one or more of the following topics:

  • * Choice of Alternate Firmware
  • * Firmware Installation Tips
  • * Better Gigabit Routers

Additionally, although too long for a bullet point, I'm interested in the viability of simply getting a wireless adapter for my desktop and just using that as the router. The internet is supplied as a simple PPPoE / CAT6 connection, so it's not exactly hard to set up (how D-Link could screw this up would be mystifying but for things like TFA). There are a handful of other devices on the WLAN but wireless throughput is not really a huge concern; I don't yet have any 802.11ac devices so I'm not going to get full speeds to them in any circumstances.

Your sage advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

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