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Comment: Initial impressions (Score 3, Insightful) 49

by Daetrin (#47317221) Attached to: Google I/O 2014 Begins [updated]
Looking at pics and descriptions in a couple live blogs, and based on that i've got to say that i didn't like live tiles when Microsoft created them and i don't like them any better now the Google seems to be copying them.

Also, reportedly "Each of your active Chrome tabs shows up individually in the app switcher". If that's true i so do not want. I've got over 90 tabs open in chrome on my phone right now, and about an equal number in Firefox. I do _not_ want to have to sort through all that just to switch apps.

Comment: Re:Selfie is short for... (Score 1) 47

by Daetrin (#47273213) Attached to: 'Selfie' Helps Doctors Diagnose Mini-Stroke

What better abbreviation of "self-portrait" would you suggest to fit in an 80-character story headline or 50-character comment subject?

If one has to have a short and specific word (instead of just "photo" or "video" as has already been suggested) then i would go with "SelfPic" or "SelfVid" as appropriate. It may not roll off the tongue quite so easily, but it's only one character longer than "selfie" and, most importantly, it doesn't sound like you're performing some kind of sex act on yourself.

Comment: Re:A number of countries?? Say it ain't so! (Score 1) 73

by Daetrin (#47183379) Attached to: Vodafone Reveals Warrantless Wiretapping

No, they can't because the existing political parties control who gets access to the ballot.

[Citation needed]

I've only looked through the rules for about ten of the states, but so far it seems pretty damn easy to either get an independent on the ballot or get yourself declared as a major party and thus be on the ballot, assuming of course you've actually got enough people supporting you to actually have a chance of winning the election. (Generally it seems to require an indication of support of anywhere between 10,000 people and 20% of the registered voters.)

So what evidence do you have that it's not actually as easy as that page seems to indicate? And please note that despite being a relatively small group, the Libertarians have succeeded in getting a number of their candidates onto the ballot.

Comment: Re:A number of countries?? Say it ain't so! (Score 1) 73

by Daetrin (#47182561) Attached to: Vodafone Reveals Warrantless Wiretapping
Your #1 is patently false, given the premises. If everyone agreed on a choice, they could elect anyone they want. Getting on the ballot is not as hard as you make it out, and in most places write-ins are possible anyways. Again, you're conflating the reality that many people are lazy and easily misled with the idea that the system can't work. The system _can_ work, it just doesn't because many people are lazy and easily misled, so they don't fight to find the best candidate and make sure that person gets on the ballot.

As for #2, you're arguing that it is impossible to find approximately 537 honest people in America. (Or 1074 if you want to have both a liberal and a conservative option.) Or do you believe that getting into office instantaneously makes one irredeemably evil? And also stupid given that they were elected for essentially a single issue and if they don't follow through they have zero chance of getting elected in the next term.

And remember the disagreement we're having is whether the political process gives the public control over the government. You say they have no control, i say they have control but in aggregate they choose not to use that control. I think we both agree we're never going to actually see the results we'd like, but you seem to think it's because there's something wrong with the system, while i think it's because there's something wrong with human nature.

Comment: Re:A number of countries?? Say it ain't so! (Score 1) 73

by Daetrin (#47180823) Attached to: Vodafone Reveals Warrantless Wiretapping
So don't elect politicians. Pick a regular bunch of people who've never held office before. Get them to sign a binding contract that if they're elected they will disband the NSA. Then elect them. It's entirely possible. We have the _ability_ to do so. We just don't have the collective will and agreement to actually do it.

Comment: Re:A number of countries?? Say it ain't so! (Score 2) 73

by Daetrin (#47180757) Attached to: Vodafone Reveals Warrantless Wiretapping
The voters have _all_ the say. The voters can elect whoever they want. The problem is not a lack of control, the problem is that about half the people abdicated their responsibility and control, a large percentage of the remainder do not actually study the issues in depth, and the remainder are too fractured in their opinions to agree on any one candidate or set of policies.

If we could get everyone in the US to agree that NSA surveillance was bad, and then only support candidates who agreed with that position, then we could end it about 5 minutes after the next election. (Well, about 5 minutes after the new people got sworn in anyways.) The problem is not the system, the problem is the people. And sadly it's probably harder to fix that problem than it would be to reform the system.

Comment: Re:Opposite for me (Score 1) 138

by Daetrin (#47131613) Attached to: The Light Might Make You Heavy
Because i generally have no problem going to sleep with the lights on, but often have a tough time getting up in the morning. Having the lights on when i wake up in the morning helps with the staying awake process... a little. (I think i might also have originally gotten into the habit during i time when i was single and lonely. Having the lights on seemed more... cheery somehow. That's obviously not a problem at this point however.)

Given how quickly and deeply i can fall asleep under various circumstances, that i can get up to deal with things like cats throwing up and then go back to sleep right away, can shift my sleeping schedule forwards or backwards with ease, and get by on a couple hours of sleep if i want or sleep for 8+ hours without interruption if i let myself, my girlfriend is convinced that i have some kind of sleeping superpower :)

Comment: Opposite for me (Score 1) 138

by Daetrin (#47130771) Attached to: The Light Might Make You Heavy
Two years ago i slept with the lights on all the time and was 175 lbs. (79 kg or 12.5 stones for you metric types ;)

Then i got a new girlfriend, who prefers to sleep with the lights off. Since then i've gained 25 lbs.

Yeah yeah, correlation is not causation, and anecdote is not evidence. And in this case the difference in weight is presumably due to going out to dinner with her more and going out to exercise by myself less. (I'm working on trying to change that now, but progress is slow =P)

But in my individual case either having the lights on was not helping me at all, or if i'd been sleeping with the lights off at my previous level of food intake and activity i would have ended up looking like a stick.

Comment: Re:More Cold War Waste (Score 1) 174

by Daetrin (#47109831) Attached to: Organic Cat Litter May Have Caused Nuclear Waste Accident
Well if your cat doesn't like it there's not a lot you can do about that (not nothing, but not a lot.)

However since our cats like it just fine i've found it superior in a number of respects. The pine pellets we use are better at odor control, it's much easier to clean the cat pan, and there's no cloud of clay dust when pouring it in. The one aspect that is _not_ so good is that when the pine pellets break down into sawdust the sawdust gets tracked all over. We put a pad under/in front of the cat pan and that has helped some, but not eliminated the problem. But overall we're pretty happy with the stuff.

Comment: Bad Slashdot Editing (Score 2) 90

I'm not sure if it was the person who submitted the article or if samzenpus decided to condense things, but the quote is straight from the article, except for removing one sentence from the middle:

"Details of how the attacks could be executed were kept under wraps while solar panel monitoring kit vendor Solar-Log distributed a patch for the flaws."

Which wouldn't be that big a deal, except that the part included in the Slashdot blurb refers to the "eponymous management system", which makes absolutely no sense if you don't include the name of the software/company.

Comment: Re:Didn't see 1, won't see 2 (Score 2) 93

by Daetrin (#46892747) Attached to: Review: <em>The Amazing Spider-Man 2</em>
Well tastes differ of course, but Spider-Man is supposed to be the "everyman" hero. And not even a regular "everyman", a smart but kind of dorky and awkward "everyman" who just lucks into his powers.

Superman is born with his powers (but doesn't consider himself "special" despite that.) Batman develops his "powers" through hard work and dedication. (Obviously being rich helps a lot, but also obviously not every rich person can become a superhero.) Captain America is, generally speaking, rewarded with his powers because he is at heart a great person. Or along the lines of the old adage, some are born great (Superman) some achieve greatness (Batman, Captain America) and some have greatness thrust upon them (Spider-Man.)

If you take Spider-Man and make him less dorky and awkward he seems a bit less like the everyman, at least to the dorky and awkward people who comics are (or at least used to be) most popular with :) If you change his backstory from "stumbled into powers" to "was destined to gain his powers from his parents", then you're really changing his character type, even if it's not immediately apparent. He's no long the type of character that became popular with his fans in the first place and, as you say, if the everyman wasn't your type of superhero to begin with then there are already a lot of other options.

Comment: Re:" why T-Mobile finds it profitable" (Score 3, Informative) 482

by Daetrin (#46892129) Attached to: Really, Why Are Smartphones Still Tied To Contracts?
I'm obviously at in advantage because i live in SoCal, but when i switched to T-Mobile at the start of 2010 i thought their 3G network was pretty good. When my phone started malfunctioning in... mid 2011 i think? and couldn't hold a 3G connection anymore, i thought their Edge network was slow, but i made do. When i got my new phone in late 2013 i thought 4G was blazing fast. Fast enough that i don't even bother switching to wireless at home. (That choice is influenced by being on the $30/month unlimited data plan and the fact that our wireless router can be a bit wonky at times.)

I haven't found anywhere outside in OC or LA where i can't get signal, except for some spots near the top of the Runyon Canyon Park, which i can live with. When i was on 3G or Edge there were a couple buildings that i couldn't get signal inside of very well (unfortunately one of those buildings was my office =) but since switching to 4G that problem seems to have disappeared.

(Except for the lunch room at work. I can't get signal in the lunch room. No one, no matter what their carrier, can get signal in the lunch room. They must have built it out of lead or something.)

(random musing: I like pink motorcycle lady, and don't remember anything distinctive about her voice at all. I don't really think she's any better or worse than CZJ was.)

Comment: Didn't see 1, won't see 2 (Score 3, Interesting) 93

by Daetrin (#46891887) Attached to: Review: <em>The Amazing Spider-Man 2</em>
I'm judging this based almost solely on the trailers, but the new Peter Parker does not seem dorky enough. He looks like they tried to make him into a hipster instead. The CGI in the trailers, especially for the second movie, makes me think "video game" more than "action movie". And all in all i just don't see the point of Spider-Man reboot so soon.

I've seen all the Marvel movies (great.) I saw Man of Steel (okay movie with significant problems that have already been hashed over.) I saw Wolverine (not perfect, but a lot better than the Origins movie). And i'm going to go see Days of Future Past. I have almost zero interest in seeing the second take of Spider-Man 2. Nothing this review has said really changes my opinion (i don't think Spider-Man really needed that much shading) and some of the things i've read in other reviews have helped bolster that opinion. (Rewriting Spider-Man's backstory via his parents to make him a "destined child" kind of strikes me as wrong.)

Comment: Dumbest thing i've read today (so far) (Score 4, Interesting) 1374

by Daetrin (#46890431) Attached to: "Smart" Gun Seller Gets the Wrong Kind of Online Attention
"but their ID-checking gun seems to default to an unfireable state, which might not always be an attractive feature."

I'm sorry, but that's the _only_ feature of this gun vis-a-vis a regular gun. The whole point is that it has to be "activated" by some specific method before it will work, in an attempt to verify that only the "right" person can use it. The details may differ, whether using a watch such as in this case or other proposed methods using fingerprints or other biometrics, but the fundamental concept is that the gun doesn't fire unless that condition is met.

Why in the world would you pay extra for a gun that checks your ID, but then decides to default to a fireable state even if you fail the ID check? If that's what you want you could just get a regular gun that doesn't bother checking your ID to begin with.

If you don't like the fundamental concept, don't buy the gun. If you don't like the idea of laws being passed in relation to this concept then write to your congressperson and/or vote for someone else. But complaining that the gun does exactly what it is designed to do is just dumb. (And needless to say, harassing and/or threatening employees of the company that sells them is just insane.)

If this is timesharing, give me my share right now.