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Comment: Well, if they wanted to make it more realistic... (Score 1) 132

... the heroes would be ripped apart just by approaching the wormhole. But it is a movie, it has to be watchable. I thought they did a great job visually and an OK job story-wise - there were no "hair-pulling" moments. Although I must admit, watching both in IMAX (the giant screen 70mm type) I enjoyed Gravity more.

Comment: I'm on my third iPhone 4S (Score 2) 99

I have a few iPhone devices for development purposes. The 4S has been a disaster. The first one had its wifi suddenly disabled (greyed out). Apparently it has some sort of temperature sensor for the wifi unit, (which only got enabled with iOS 6 or so IIRC) that tends to malfunction and disable the wifi. The following two units eventually had the same thing happen to them. Of course I had to pay for them because I was out of warranty. It is a quite widespread issue judging from the numerous forum posts, but Apple does not acknowledge it as a hardware failure - their instructions call for resetting network settings or a full restore of the unit which does not work. What does work is, quite interestingly, putting the phone in the freezer, but it does not fix the issue permanently. Apple is a special case though, due to the fact that the average Apple customer behaves like a member of a cult. For example, my boss had his 6-month old Mac Mini warranty voided because they found "dust" inside (it was in a pet-free, smoke-free office in case you are wondering). I told him that they can't do that, even if they did find "dust" it is not in their listed reasons to void a warranty and he simply answered "no, it is official, they told me so at the genius bar and gave me 10% off a new mac mini so I got one". So they usually get away too easily with bad hardware, like the low quality "superdrives" that would fail left and right, the aforementioned wifi module etc. I don't know if they are sleazier than everyone else, they sure are sleazy as hell but the difference is that the majority of their customers thinks they are infallible...

Comment: Wait, model it after Ebay dispute resolution? (Score 2) 40

by Ecuador (#49066153) Attached to: Online UK Courts Modelled On EBay To Settle Legal Disputes

The notoriously bad and unfair Ebay dispute resolution? I hope they don't just mean "the buyer always wins" (and I am talking as an ebay buyer here - it has affected me too since most sellers have pulled out and I can't find the rare things I could in the past).

That said, a simple online system where you can argue small cases without spending money for lawyers or even traveling to court could be a great thing IF it is implemented well. It would be an interesting challenge for a legal system famous for Bleak House ;)

Comment: Don't be so hard on him... (Score 2) 323

I have a degree in Physics (and not an "easy" one) and I have found that my extensive math is usually a significant advantage over CS guys. So I could see how some things from EE could be useful, especially if you were doing much in the telecom/signal processing etc type of EE stuff. Then again I also have a Master's in CS (good US Uni), so I guess it is different. You can brag if you know more than other people in a field, but you can't do it if you are at least as good in the basics... ;)

Comment: Re:Cheap and sounds great! (Score 1) 249

by Ecuador (#49030691) Attached to: How good is your audio equipment?
It doesn't have to be too expensive, but it can't be too cheap and still sound great, or you just don't know any better due to no experience with better sound and just think it sounds great. For example, I had a nice yamaha home theater amplifier at home with decent Klipsch speakers and when I started watching movies and listening to music with my (now) wife on it she always said it sounded "fine" whether I had a 128kbps mp3 playing or a Telarc CD. Fast forward a couple of years (living together) later, I would start a movie and she would go "Hey, what is wrong with this movie, it doesn't sound that good." "Sorry honey, it is dolby stereo, not DD/DTS as we usually have." or "What's wrong with this one now, the sound sucks" "Sorry honey it is a rip with re-compressed AAC audio". So both a good system and experience with it are required for someone to appreciate the increase in quality. That said, it is only cost effective up to one point and you can certainly get 95% of quality by spending under $500 for a 2.0/music setup or under $1000 for a 5.1/home theater setup (even less if you don't care much about explosions and skip the separate subwoofer), and I usually brag about how LITTLE I paid for that nice Klipsch center speaker on a woot deal and for the 2nd hand L+R.

Comment: Even worse with iPhones 4/4S (Score 1) 120

by Ecuador (#48944113) Attached to: Wi-Fi Issues Continue For OS X Users Despite Updates
I have gone through 3 iPhones 4S. Every time the same situation, the wifi option completely disappears (greyed out), and no amount of network reset etc. can bring it back. It is a well known problem with people getting temporary fixes by freezing/heating the device! It does not seem to be just a hardware problem (e.g. like the nVidia soldering), but has to do with firmware as well, since this started happening with the introduction of iOS 6 or 7 (I forget) which added some temperature control functionality.

So your wifi dies completely. It is so widespread and discussed (google for it) that for any other brand this would have probably been a class action lawsuit - or at least an acknowledgement and free fix, but with Apple every time it fails I have to pay out of pocket (it is for development purposes, no I am not a masochist), since the vast majority of Apple users are fine with paying.

Comment: Well, it's more like they said... (Score 2) 145

by Ecuador (#48894679) Attached to: NVIDIA Responds To GTX 970 Memory Bug
That it will go 200 MPH like the equivalent model from other brands like Lamborghini etc but it turns out it goes 175, i.e. slower than those. Sure, you would not have realized it until you actually found a road good enough to test over 175 MPH (if you ever did) and otherwise the car feels good and accelerates as expected, but max speed is something that some people care about especially when comparing one sports car with the other. The excuse is sort of like "yeah, we put in an engine that would theoretically handle 200 MPH so that is what we list, but we sort of skimped on the transmission system on this less high end model so we had to put a limiter at 175 MPH since the transmission cannot address more speed...". If they had said 3.5GB addressable from the start, nobody would have minded except the 5 people who really wanted those 4GB that other cards might have, so it is sort of a poor decision to not mention it from the start...

Comment: Re:Not that easy to see (Score 1) 53

by Ecuador (#48888289) Attached to: Rare Astronomical Event Will See Triple Moon Shadows On Jupiter
Eh, a 4.5" Newtonian is not that well-suited for planets if it is fast (e.g. around f/5) - it is not about price. That said, the OTA of a modern decent quality 4.5" Newtonian costs around $100-$200, so it is one of the cheapest you can get - most people pay several times that for their phone. Now, if you want to see Jupiter in some detail and stay within budget you can go for a 5" Mak at around $200-$300 (for the OTA, or $400 for the full package with a computerized goto mount and tripod) and for example when coupled with a $10 webcam it will give you an image of Saturn like this: https://www.dropbox.com/s/r2vh... (note that Jupiter is quite larger than Saturn so it is an easier target to get surface detail). So that's a very cheap telescope (still less than a smartphone) that would give you a good view of the event. If you want to spend more money but not too much, you can look into used scopes. E.g. I recently grabbed an 8" Celestron SCT for $400 which gives even greater planetary views.

Comment: Re:Lucas has lost it. (Score 1) 422

by Ecuador (#48887785) Attached to: Disney Turned Down George Lucas's Star Wars Scripts
Ahaha. I watched the trilogy before going watch to the Kingdom of Crystal Skull. I was surprised at how well part 1 and 3 were holding on, especially in comparison to the Temple of Doom - even the effects were sub-par. I forgot all about it though after watching part 4. Thanks for reminding me... :p

Comment: Lucas has lost it. (Score 5, Interesting) 422

by Ecuador (#48886579) Attached to: Disney Turned Down George Lucas's Star Wars Scripts
I recently watched THX 1138. It is a good reminder of how brilliant he was. Years ahead, great vision, but as the years passed he started losing his edge, more and more. From the Director's Cut of THX that is evident from several unneded CGI scenes that distract from the otherwise great film. The prequels and special editions show the same thing even more prominently. And let's not even talk about Indiana Jones 4 (what, there are only 3 Indiana Jones movies? Ok, I feel you). So we should be grateful when he is not writing scripts nowadays... Now, J.J. on the other hand is being made fun of for his "flares" etc, but he actually made us Trekkers be the cool kids for once! Yes, it was not "Star Trek" in the traditional sense, however it was highly enjoyable action sci-fi. Given that Star Wars was in any case not "cerebral" to start with, he should be even more at home working on it.

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