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Comment Re:Use computers instead? (Score 1) 167

you're confused, the Arduino has absolutely no intrinsic capability to generate random numbers. Instead it has pseudo-random function. In fact that points out massive issue that programmers who blindly trust a "random number function" commit often in the open source world, the most used functions aren't random at all

Comment This Is The Authoring Tool, Not The Plugin (Score 4, Informative) 107

They're renaming the authoring tool, which is currently known as Flash Professional CC. It appears that the Flash Player will remain just that.

This makes perfect sense, as Flash Professional CC is increasingly being used to generate media that targets HTML5, not Flash, as output. Renaming Flash Professional CC to Animate CC eliminates the whole need to do the song and dance of "we're talking about Flash the authoring environment, not Flash the plugin" to non-technical audiences.

Comment Re:But intel... (Score 0) 132

But intel keeps telling us we only need 4 cores for games?!

They're right. A quad-core intel chip beats the pants off an eight-core AMD chip... for twice the money. The maximum frame rates are only maybe 5% higher, but the minimums are almost 50% higher. If it's worth the money to you to keep your minimum frame rates up, which really can make the difference between killing and being killed in an online match mind you, then you buy the Intel chip.

To me, saving a hundred bucks (and almost another hundred on the motherboard, which was also cheaper) was more important. But to each their own.

Comment Re:Holy crap - horse statues (Score 1) 60

Check out the statues:


How crazy does one have to be? I'd love to hear her story behind that. Maybe she'll write a book.

Just ask and you shall receive.

Rita A. Crundwell (born January 10, 1953) was the appointed comptroller and treasurer of Dixon, Illinois, from 1983 to 2012, and the admitted operator of what is believed to be the largest municipal fraud in American history. She was fired in April 2012 after it was revealed that she had embezzled $53.7 million from the city over 22 years to support her championship American Quarter Horse breeding operation. [1][2][3][4] She pled guilty to her crimes and was sentenced to nearly 20 years in prison.[1]

Crundwell's Quarter Horse operation, RC Quarter Horses, was one of the best-known Quarter Horse breeders in the country; her horses won 52 world championships and she was named the leading owner by the American Quarter Horse Association for eight consecutive years prior to her arrest.


One year of prison for each 2.5 million dollars. That's not bad. Where do I sign up?

Where are they actually selling the horses? Those should be worth way more than the statues.

Comment Re:corruption, not victim compensation (Score 1) 60

Proceeds generated from asset sales are used to compensate victims, supplement funding for law enforcement initiatives and support community programs.

Victimless crimes are probably preferable then. Also I assume those "law enforcement initiatives" are just double-speak for big blow out parties, cable TV for the break rooms, cool military equipment, cool new cars (both marked and unmarked), and unlimited donuts.

Comment Re:Sputnik? (Score 4, Interesting) 201

but the development of the Shuttle and the Soviets' failure with their equivalent

Actually, the Soviets succeeded in realizing that an airplane-shaped payload strapped onto the side of a rocket makes no sense after only one flight. It took us over 100 flights before we realized the same thing. I think they won that round.

Comment Precarious business model (Score 1) 193

It sounds like a precarious business model. Everyone prefers lithium batteries. So long as lithium prices are high enough, you can find a market for cheaper inferior batteries. But high lithium prices will lead to higher lithium production and prices likely coming back down. In building a sodium battery plant, you're gambling on lithium price being sufficiently high most of the time for several decades into the future.

The picture changes if you can make the sodium batteries as good as lithium for at least some market niche, or if your battery plant can easily switch between lithium and sodium (which seems fairly likely.)

Comment Re:Define requirements (Score 1) 197

Is browsing Slashdot a requirement? Even my main gaming machine struggles with /. nowadays... Each Slashdot tab in Chrome consumes over 2GB of RAM, so having a few discussions open brings my machine to its knees. This happening to anyone else? Or is there something I have to update in Chrome's embedded flash player? :P

Comment nVidia ION (Score 1) 197

Yep, I still have an old EeePC901 running Linux Mint from an SD card. It's connected to my kids' Casio digital piano, so it can record and playback using Rosegarden. It's a bit too sluggish for web browsing or other music software such as LMMS, but most else is fine.

My current server system is still a shoebox nVidia ION box with 4GB RAM and an SSD, which makes it snappy enough for web browsing with Chromium in addition to its server duties. I bought it from Craigslist a while ago to replace my tower, and it's much better with power usage for 24x7 operation. The last guy who had it was trying to turn it into a HTPC, but I guess that endeavor didn't go great.

I have a $85 HP Stream 7 running Windows 10... it's actually quite nice once you get a bluetooth keyboard and mouse for it (the touchscreen UI still has a poor adaptation for fingers compared to iOS and Android and is quite frustrating). I'm about to get a couple of those $35 Amazon Fire 7 tablets running Linux, and that's probably the best you can get for a cheap computer, provided you can get the Linux-Installer running on it. Some people have managed to boot it up with a non-Android distro, but the hardware support is still getting there... but the chroot Linux environments have tended to provide the best of both worlds, IMHO.

"You need tender loving care once a week - so that I can slap you into shape." - Ellyn Mustard