Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Why not a background process requesting ads? (Score 5, Insightful) 286

by nightfire-unique (#49527669) Attached to: German Court Rules Adblock Plus Is Legal

One thing I never understood is why no one's come up with an ad blocker that still requests ads in the background, but doesn't display them (as an option).

Quite literally, everyone wins in that scenario. Advertisers get to feel like they're changing the world. Web sites are funded. We don't have to deal with advertisements.

And manufacturers/service providers are less likely to deal with the wrath of people like me who go out of our way to avoid products with offensive advertising. We won't know any better.

Comment: Re:This has all the makings of a reality show (Score 2) 233

by Raseri (#49068867) Attached to: Mars One: Final 100 Candidates Selected
Strange comparison. After looking at the list of "candidates" (many of whom look an awful lot like those crisis actors that you see whenever there's a false flag operation), I was thinking this would turn out more like Lord of the Flies, but with more rape and murder (going with the pretend-it's-real angle, anyway).

Comment: Telegram (Score 4, Informative) 192

by nightfire-unique (#48893197) Attached to: WhatsApp vs. WhatsApp Plus Fight Gets Ugly For Users

Telegram is better. Open API, open source clients, multiple concurrent connections, end-to-end encryption availability..

Though it doesn't have WhatsApp's userbase (yet), they do have over 50m active users and growing by the day.

Help us displace WhatsApp once and for all!

Comment: It's so important.. (Score 1) 360

by nightfire-unique (#48669125) Attached to: UK Man Arrested Over "Offensive" Tweet

.. to know how people feel.

We, as members of society, need information when we choose who to befriend, who to do business with, and who to avoid. If people are not free to express themselves, we cannot make good choices.

If you're the type to avoid humor in bad taste, and you find this person offensive, you should be fighting this. Otherwise, at some point, you may find yourself emotionally attached to someone who feels this way, only to find out after the fact. When people bare their soul in a public forum, without fear of repercussion, you can observe and make decisions on how you want to interact with them in private. You can decide ahead of time.

If speaking one's mind is potentially illegal, much important information becomes unavailable as people will be unwilling to speak their minds. You cannot know someone is a racist, or someone is opposed to religious influence, or someone is against liberal governance, or someone has a problem with war. You can't know if they're neo-nazis, and you can't know if they believe politicians should be hanged for war crimes.

You may enter into relationships with these people only to find out much later that they feel a certain way.

The more deeply offended you are by speech, the more you should fight for it to be open and free.

Comment: Telegram is better (Score 1) 93

by nightfire-unique (#48427297) Attached to: WhatsApp To Offer End-to-End Encryption

Telegram offers every feature of WhatsApp, plus end-to-end encryption with visual signatures, arbitrary file sharing, multi-device support (including PC), is open source and the API is published.

They claim to have 40M+ users, so they're a substantial amount of the way to displacing WhatsApp already.

Comment: Android is getting worse (Score 1) 178

by nightfire-unique (#48379255) Attached to: Android 5.0 'Lollipop' vs. iOS 8: More Similar Than Ever

I want to preface this with: I'm an Android user/developer of 5 years, and have no interest in Apple devices. I don't mean to offend anyone, and I apologize for the long-winded post.

Sadly, I find Android is heading in a very bad direction.

Google has captured most of the top of the market, leaving little opportunity for growth, so it appears they've started "simplifying" the UI to capture those with little/no interest in mobile computers, those with less mental acuity or those unable/unwilling to spend a few hours learning the fundamental operating principles of a machine, young children, etc. Same direction Gnome headed in a few years back.

Can't blame them; they are a publicly held corporation, and they must grow. But, unfortunately, simplifying a user interface almost invariably makes it less useful to those who are willing to put in the time to synchronize with the machine.

Just a few more egregious examples of this in the latest Android versions:

Menu button removed

Contextual menus are a extremely powerful. On most modern OSes, right-clicking a control brings up a menu of actions related to that control. Since touchscreens lack a practical way to right-click, the menu button used to implement the equivalent functionality. Some UI designers claim it's inconsistent because you never know if the menu button is going to do anything, and that is a valid complaint. However, removing contextual menus entirely is silly. Many apps run full-screen where an overflow button is inappropriate, and when appropriate, overflow buttons needlessly take up room on the screen and enforce a display layout that isn't always appropriate for every app.

Bafflingly unusable new task switcher

If you haven't seen the new task switcher layout for 5.0, check it out. No longer can you see screen captures of your most recent 5-6 apps, but rather a confusing, battery wasting, user-interaction-required morphing list.

Google Maps feature regressions

Although not directly related to Android, it is symptomatic of Google's general new approach to mobile development. Gone are incredibly useful features like distance measure, zoom controls, sortable place search, place search compass arrows, and many other features that made the old Android maps app so great.

Where are chrome extensions? Native multiwindow support? GNU tools (instead of their godawful "toolbox")? Correctly functioning alt-tab? DNS overrides? Native image backups? Out-of-the-box viper4android? How about forcing manufacturers to add a "delete crapware" button if they want membership to the play store? Where are the extended privacy controls?

The thing is, they already have the "power users" market. So there's no reason to improve the Android core. We've all got CM, AOSP, AOKP, etc., anyway, right?

But it's frustrating, and I do hope some competition pops up to re-address the concerns of those who really use their devices.

Comment: Re:I still don't get the love for WhatsApp. (Score 1) 65

by nightfire-unique (#48133357) Attached to: WhatsApp's Next Version To Include VoIP Calls and Recording

The big deal is that it got so many things right back when no one else could figure it out, and that netted them a ton of users (which of course means that most of our friends are probably already on it.

Here are the features that won me over two years ago:

- Proper functioning chat groups that forward every message type (video, audio, locations, text, etc) to all members
- Location sharing
- The two-checkmark system (one means message reached server, two means message reached user's device)
- Zero configuration; your contacts are scanned (I get why some people have a problem with this, though), and everyone else who has WhatsApp installed appears automatically
- Audio messaging (GMRS-style)

Keep in mind, WhatsApp supported all of these features years ago. It was fast, reliable, simple to install, easy to use... it really was unique. Now everything out there supports all or at least most of this functionality, but it's too late; WhatsApp already has the user base.

Myself, I'm hoping Telegram displaces them.

Comment: Re:Real men (Score 1) 430

by Raseri (#47600733) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What To Do About the Sorry State of FOSS Documentation?

there's also almost always a premium solution for a problem, which comes with extensive documentation and customer support resources

As was mentioned farther up this thread, those days are rapidly coming to an end. Less and less documentation is being given to users even for commercial, closed-source programs, with the expectation that "the community" will pick up the slack. In such a climate, how does it make sense to spend money on some "premium" solution when the documentation is just as bad as, or far worse than, its FOSS counterpart?

Comment: Re:Read the source code (Score 5, Informative) 430

by Raseri (#47600657) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What To Do About the Sorry State of FOSS Documentation?

On the other hand, I've noticed a steady decline in documentation for commercial software too.

Many of them seem to be going the route of "community-driven" documentation; i.e., dropping the cost of the manuals (and everything related, such as tech writers, printing, and so on), and shifting the burden of educating new users to more experienced ones. This is more or less how most FOSS projects have been documented for years, though out of necessity rather than a desire to cut yet another corner.

Comment: Re:Real men (Score 2) 430

by Raseri (#47600091) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What To Do About the Sorry State of FOSS Documentation?

Nobody said only FOSS projects have shitty documentation.

It was implied:

I've been out of computers as a serious home-hobby for many years and in returning I'm aghast at the state of documentation for Open Source projects.

Though it's possible that OP was in prison for 10 years (he doesn't actually say why he was out of home hobby computing), I didn't see any reason to jump to that or some similar conclusion.

No shit, troll.

That word. I do not think it means what you think it means. Calm the fuck down, kid.

Comment: Real men (Score 4, Insightful) 430

by Raseri (#47599807) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What To Do About the Sorry State of FOSS Documentation?
learn how to use a program by reading the source code!

I jest, of course. It's not just open source projects that have this problem, though; plenty of commercial applications also have shit for documentation. The upside in open source being that you *can* read the source and build documentation from it, if you were so inclined.

Comment: Living in the past! (Score 3, Funny) 84

by nightfire-unique (#47588435) Attached to: Driverless Buses Ruled Out For London, For Now

Let's face it, driverless buses don't really exist. But so long as we don't regress back into the awful world of proprietary or non-standard extensions, why should buses need drivers outside of those shipped with the kernel?

Methinks the mayor of London has a soft spot for microchannel!

Elegance and truth are inversely related. -- Becker's Razor

Working...