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Comment: Re: The thing to remember about episode IV. . . (Score 1) 457

by DancesWithRobots (#46938043) Attached to: Favorite Star Wars Movie?
Notice I specifically used the term "sci fi"? There was a lot of back and forth over what defines "science fiction" and how it should be labeled back in the day. (I won't say which "day.") But for what it's worth--Yeah, Star Wars is a fantasy with elements of science fiction. But most of the movie going audience doesn't see that.

Comment: The thing to remember about episode IV. . . (Score 1) 457

by DancesWithRobots (#46934113) Attached to: Favorite Star Wars Movie?
Anyone around who remembers seeing Star Wars (as opposed to "A New Hope") when it opened, understands just how underserved, disrespected, and just plain bad science fiction films were back then. Star Trek and 2001 A Space Odyssey were a decade ago and already also-rans (tho remembere fondly by fans--only.) Star Wars was fun and blinding and fun for everybody. It single handedly saved the genre. Some famous bookie opined that CEIII would do better than SW--which it did--and then the whole sci fi thing would be forgotten again. Now, Sci Fi films, (I use THAT precise term. NOT SF or Science Fiction.) are just another genre, as likely to succeed as anything else. It just wasn't like that in the seventies folks.
Science

Graphene Aerogel Takes World's Lightest Material Crown 198

Posted by samzenpus
from the I-don't-feel-a-thing dept.
cylonlover writes "Not even a year after it claimed the title of the world's lightest material, aerographite has been knocked off its crown by a new aerogel made from graphene. Created by a research team from China's Zhejiang University in the Department of Polymer Science and Engineering lab headed by Professor Gao Chao, the ultra-light aerogel has a density of just 0.16 mg/cm3, which is lower than that of helium and just twice that of hydrogen."

Comment: Re:Try NewEgg (Score 1) 570

by DancesWithRobots (#42842249) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Buying a Laptop That Doesn't Have Windows 8
I can understand having to limit support. But McGraw Hill's response was to shut the door as soon as I got to the log-in page. They didn't do any checks, or give any warnings during the initial account creation--which upon completion dropped me right into the courseware jump-off page. But as soon as I logged off and tried to come back--BOUNCE! I knew I'd be able to find another way in, but many people--probably most--wouldn't be able to. This is the first time in years I've had an absolute and unnecessary roadblock and it's time to end this sort of petty bullshit. This year I certainly WON'T be doing my taxes online at H&R Block, and I'll never sign up for another course that uses McGraw Hill Contact.

Comment: Re:Try NewEgg (Score 1) 570

by DancesWithRobots (#42827841) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Buying a Laptop That Doesn't Have Windows 8

I'm still interested to know how they knew you were using linux.

What is interesting is that they require java considering it is basically unsafe to use java at this point. Mozilla disables it by default. Flash is also a total disaster, but I guess we are stuck with it until some better standardized technology comes along to replace it.

Somehow or other, they were able to make that determination. I looked into user agent switchers, but in the interests of getting my homework done, I found. . .well "back door" is a cliche, but that amounts to what it was. And I'm aware of the issues with Flash and Java. But college students are beholden to the books and web sites their professors choose. This particular site logs your progress and prepares all sorts of charts and graphs for the professors amusement. I sent my Professor a respectful tirade about this whole fiasco. Of course she was unable to help, but now she wants me on the school newspaper.

Comment: Re:Try NewEgg (Score 2) 570

by DancesWithRobots (#42827681) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Buying a Laptop That Doesn't Have Windows 8

Theoretically, a website shouldn't even know what OS you are using. It is more likely to be looking at which browser you are using via the user agent, and sometimes this can be a giveaway as to which OS you are using (e.g. you are probably running Linux if you are running iceweasel). This user agent field is changeable to whatever you want, it is usually there to help web servers send you stuff that is going to work in your browser. Usually websites either give you a version of their website that is customized for your browser or some generic default if they don't recognize the browser you are using. Maybe the McGraw Hill Connect website is just written sloppily and it is rejecting your user agent. Depending on your browser, there is probably a way to change it. There may even be a way to change it for just that one web site.

There is also a possibility that you are using a browser that is blocking popups by default. Some websites assume you are using IE and therefore likely have popups enabled. This is kind of dumb, because I am not even sure IE allows them anymore.

TELL me about it. There was a page in the support section to test a computers suitability. Compatible browser, Java installed, Flash installed, pop-up blocker turned off, COMPATIBLE OS. I hit every mark except Linux got red-flagged. Pissed me off immensely and their support agent was as expected--no help. I found another page on McGraw Hill's Connect web site that asked for log in info, and it sent me right to the courseware. Been completing lessons ever since. Also taking advantage of every soapbox I can find to warn folks that McGraw Hill is unfair to Linux users.

Comment: Re:Try NewEgg (Score 3, Interesting) 570

by DancesWithRobots (#42826953) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Buying a Laptop That Doesn't Have Windows 8

Or check out this site: http://www.ubuntu.com/download/desktop .

Uh. . .I'd be careful with this. I've been using Ubuntu exclusively for years and have had no serious problems UNTIL I tried to log into the online portion of a course via McGraw Hill Connect. The log in screen bounced me out for no other reason than because I was using Linux. The ironic part is when I found a way in that bypassed the courses official log-in screen, the online portions ran just fine.

Comment: Two things. . . (Score 1) 307

First--A woman I met in an unemployment line, got a job because she changed her email address to "200wpm@whatever.com" (an honest assessment of her abilities, she claimed.) Second, as for dvorak--I type dvorak. I can't say it's increased my speed, but it DID lessen my RSI. That being said. . .since my company doesn't use a client/server network with wandering profiles--my computer annoys everyone who sits down at it. Which. . .I feel is a good thing.

+ - Bulldozer's Just As Bad With Servers->

Submitted by RobinEggs
RobinEggs (1453925) writes "Some reviews of Bulldozer's performance in servers have arrived, and Arstechnica has a breakdown. The results are pretty ugly. Apparently Bulldozer fares just as poorly with servers as with desktops.

From the article: 'One reason for the underwhelming performance on the desktop is that the Bulldozer architecture emphasizes multithreaded performance over single-threaded performance. For desktop applications, where single-threaded performance is still king, this is a problem. Server workloads, in contrast, typically have to handle multiple users, network connections, and virtual machines concurrently. This makes them a much better fit for processors that support lots of concurrent threads. Some commentators have even suggested that Bulldozer was, first and foremost, a server processor; relatively weak desktop performance was to be expected, but it would all come good in the server room.

Unfortunately for AMD, it looks as though the decisions that hurt Bulldozer on the desktop continue to hurt it in the server room. Although the server benchmarks don't show the same regressions as were found on the desktop, they do little to justify the design of the new architecture.'

It's probably much too early to start editorializing about the end of AMD, or even to say with certainty that Bulldozer has failed, but my untrained eye can't yet see any possible silver lining in these new processors."

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