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Comment Why not just prepay for your mileage? (Score 1) 658

Works over here (NZ) on diesel vehicles. When I had my last diesel I used to pay up front for kilometers (usually 10,000) for x amount of money. If you are ever stopped and found to not have enough kilometers to cover what is actually on your odometer you are fined. You can read about it here: I had no problem paying them and thought it was a fair way of taxing. Much better than taxing at the pump like they do with gas. It was depressing when I started driving (I'm originally from WV) and looking at the amount of tax clipped on at the pump.

Comment If you're using someone else's equipment (Score 1) 622

... expect someone else to see it. It really is that simple. Anytime data leaves your network or has a means of leaving your network, expect that someone else can and is looking at it. Of course you can encrypt everything, use Tor, only go to HTTPS sites, etc, but as soon as you place or pull data from someone else's systems or networks, expect there to be a trail or log of that happening at the very least. This isn't conspiracy theory or whatnot, it's common sense really. Do I like it? No. Do I not like it enough to quit using the internet, phones, etc?? Hell no!!! I'm just aware (as I have always been) that if I use someone else's stuff, don't expect the experience to be fully private, that's all...

Comment Re:What do you mean, "now" starting? (Score 1) 162

About the same for me as well. We had a TRS-80 in class and learned on that in 2nd Grade (in '82). First it was copying down what was in the book, then basic problem solving along the lines of "What's missing in this line". I should have really kept going with it but by the time I was 12 I was completely and utterly fed up with it. That's when I switched to music. :) Of course, nowadays I pay the bills doing the usual admin and network engineering I would say a lot of us do and try not to get anywhere near programming.

Submission + - New Study Finds Life on Mars (

An anonymous reader writes: A new study, performed by an international team of researchers and mathematicians, studying the Viking Mars Robot data concludes that there us life on mars.

"On the basis of what we've done so far, I'd say I'm 99 percent sure there's life there," said neuropharmacologist and biologist Joseph Miller, with the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine. "The ultimate proof is to take a video of a Martian bacteria. They should send a microscope — watch the bacteria move,"


Submission + - Documentation as a Bug-Finding Tool (

Sekrimo writes: I recently came across this excellent article on an interesting advantage to writing documentation. While the author acknowledges that developers often write documentation so that others may better understand their code, he claims that documenting can also be a useful way to find bugs before they ever become an issue. Taking the time to write this documentation helps to ensure that you've thought through every aspect of your program fully, and cleared up any issues that may arise.

Comment Minecraft / Lua (Score 2) 525

Funnily enough, my son has gotten into programming via Minecraft and Lua scripting. Through this he has moved into VB (although he was interested in this prior to Minecraft), Javascript, toying with C++ now, and still tinkering with C as well. All in all, maybe a book may not be the best option.

Comment Re:Why is screen resolution not improving? (Score 1) 394

That 1680x1050 res screen isn't in a cheap laptop you bought from a store I would assume (bad me for assuming). My boss has a Dell with that same res and I keep telling him what I'll tell you, you'll need to get a decent consumer grade laptop (probably gamer spec'd) or a decent business machine to get a good resolution. There are more and more (basing this on NZ stores mind you so take with a grain of salt) lower end laptops sporting better resolutions but, on average, you need to pay a bit more for a better resolution and that usually means not a cheap laptop for the masses.

Comment PXE boot??? (Score 1) 253

Why not just PXE boot a small OS image which does the backup and wipes the drives?? Linux or DOS will do the trick just fine. If you're trying to backup anything NT based (NT-Win7) get a read-only NTFS driver on the PXE image too. It's pretty simple really and doesn't take any real time IF all of your systems are semi-modern.

Comment Re:In other words... (Score 1) 662

From an iPhone user's point of view (at least this iPhone user's view), this is a catch-up to not only Android, but also some of the fun little things users currently jailbreak their phones for. I've been a good little boy and haven't jailbroken this phone yet and will wait till this fall to see how version 5 does. Hopefully the notification system is on par with what Android has. As far as the camera goes, I still don't see HOW it has taken them this long to figure that brain-dead feature out. I'm picking no one in the higher ranks of Apple use their phones for taking photos. As for iCloud, meh. If I were still living in the US i would use Google's service. Since I live in NZ, iCloud will be first to the show over here.

Comment Re:A real shame (Score 1) 394

Here's a small list to start with of treaties which weren't honored: To the other part of your post, being an American who has been living outside the US for over a decade, it's very interesting seeing the world perspective versus the US perspective in things like the news. As a little homework assignment for all Americans, watch the news over the next few days. After watching, try to find similar stories from other countries and see how they report it. It wouldn't be difficult to find a real list but, hell, it's been a long day and I'm tired.

You've been Berkeley'ed!