Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:Better is to get rid of the "Advanced" tab too (Score 1) 170

by Grishnakh (#47962335) Attached to: KDE's UI To Bend Toward Simplicity

So if all the hackers switch to alternative WMs, and leave the main ones to the "conventional desktop users", who's going use these main ones?

All the conventional desktop users are using Windows and MacOS, not Linux.

Worse, if some non-hackers do start using Linux with Gnome, then ask their hacker friend for help, the hacker is just going to say "sorry, I don't use Gnome, I can't help you." If you want Linux on the desktop to take off, you have to court both the hackers and the regular users. The only way to do that is by having advanced features available for the hackers.

Comment: Re:Some criticism (Score 1) 170

by Grishnakh (#47962315) Attached to: KDE's UI To Bend Toward Simplicity

And "If everyone used Linux, there would no doubt be less demand for cleaning up PCs"...? No. People make that mistake all the time

Sorry, but yes. Your post makes the mistake of conflating professional IT Department staffers with Geek Squad. IT people maintaining corporate infrastructure are not the people who make a business out of going to peoples' homes and cleaning up all the adware and crapware that has infested their Windows PCs. The former is not terribly threatened by Linux (except that they might need to learn something new), but the latter certainly is. If home users all switched to Linux, they wouldn't need the constant maintenance that home Windows PCs require. Just take a look at someone running Windows on their personal laptop; it's likely filled with a dozen different "toolbars" that have somehow installed themselves into their browser (even Firefox), even though the user never asked for them, and the computer runs at a crawl. I've seen it over and over.

Comment: Re:Expert. (Score 1) 344

I see, thanks for the info.

Interesting how open-source software is far superior to proprietary stuff: with the proprietary stuff, you're paying good money for something which is, in fact, crippled: it sees some watermark and won't work. The open-source software, OTOH, doesn't care about some watermark and plays what it's told to play, because it isn't made in collusion with media corporations.

Comment: Re:Expert. (Score 1) 344

by Grishnakh (#47954633) Attached to: U2 and Apple Collaborate On 'Non-Piratable, Interactive Format For Music'

>Not sure what you're referring to, but I've yet to encounter a DVD (not Blu-Ray) that Media Player Classic and VLC can't play, and since they aren't officially licensed players that means they're cracking whatever DRM is on the disc.

Yeah, I already said that, basically. DVDs have been cracked for ages. I don't know what this watermark thing the parent poster referred to is.

Comment: Re:Cut cut cut (Score 1) 108

by Grishnakh (#47951227) Attached to: Microsoft Lays Off 2,100, Axes Silicon Valley Research

It's actually a good strategy for MS, I think, and I believe Ballmer screwed up by not following this strategy.

For other companies, it only works in the short term because their competitors win in the long term because without good employees, the company can't develop new products. However, for MS, this just isn't a concern. They're a monopoly in many markets, especially in business software; companies aren't going to suddenly stop buying Windows, Exchange, Office/Outlook, etc. MS can milk their existing customers for a couple of decades I think, and could easily jack up prices greatly.

Comment: Re:Where's the bottom? (Score 1) 108

by Grishnakh (#47951207) Attached to: Microsoft Lays Off 2,100, Axes Silicon Valley Research

I think MS (and their products) will get worse before this gets better.

Doesn't matter, people will still buy MS products no matter what. Businesses aren't going to wean themselves from MS's enterprise software anytime soon. This was a good decision: the research efforts were costing money which wasn't being made up in new sales.

MS's best course of action is to cut out as much R&D as possible and other bottom-line costs, and then try to extract as much money from existing customers as possible by jacking up prices. Thanks to their monopoly position in several markets, this shouldn't be hard.

Comment: Re:Expert. (Score 1) 344

That's a really good point. But I guess they could just disable bluetooth. I'm starting to wonder if today's Apple is as incredibly stupid as Sony was 10-15 years ago. Though, Apple might actually be right: the people who buy Apple stuff are such sheep they, unlike Sony's prospective customers a decade ago when they tried to push proprietary audio formats, might actually buy into Apple's proprietary junk.

Comment: (Score 1) 177

by Grishnakh (#47949747) Attached to: Netropolitan Is a Facebook For the Affluent, and It's Only $9000 To Join

The rich don't need good service. They'll pay their $9k each, get pissed off, and the site will be down after a couple of years due to non-renewals; meanwhile, the site founders will have made $10-20 million (2,000 people, your numbers, times $9k = $18M) and can retire quite comfortably.

I wish I had thought of it....

Comment: Re: .info (Score 1) 177

by Grishnakh (#47949707) Attached to: Netropolitan Is a Facebook For the Affluent, and It's Only $9000 To Join

Actually, it's pretty clever. Make up something lame, call it "exclusive", and sell it to people with more money than brains. It reminds me of some company that made fancy, massively-overpriced cellphones to sell to rich people (with sapphire mechanisms in the buttons, no less) back when the iPhone v1 was revolutionizing smartphones.

This thing doesn't have to become a giant commercial success, it just has to make a bunch of money before the owners bail out and it collapses.

Comment: Re:Expert. (Score 1) 344

>The answer to this will be 'No'. The obvious way Apple is going is to change the audio output jack to the headphone to something proprietary like Lightning.

So what? At some point, the signal has to be converted to analog so that it can drive transducers and produce listenable sound. Anyone with a soldering iron can tap into the signal at that point and record it with very good quality.

Comment: Re:Expert. (Score 1) 344

> I don't remember the what the video tech is called, but newer DVD players and TVs won't display videos that have a specific watermark embedded in it. That DRM hasn't been cracked yet. In theory DRM is impossible, but in reality they only need to stay ahead of the hackers. That's not too difficult.

It's not that easy either. Basically it's an arms race between the two interests. The media interests have money on their side (which can be used to hire engineers to come up with difficult-to-crack schemes), whereas the crackers have on their side the fact that a crack only needs to be found once, and then distributed via the internet, and then the whole scheme is useless. However, the crackers have limited resources and interest, so they only bother if it's really worth their time. So any DRM that hasn't been cracked yet can likely be attributed to it not being worthwhile enough to bother with. Playing DVDs on Linux was seen as worthwhile enough because 1) it wasn't too hard to crack and 2) DVDs were (and still are) by far the dominant method of recording/viewing movies. Yes, streaming video has made a big dent, but not that much; there's still tons of stuff not available on Netflix instant play. And Blu-Rays were supposed to supercede DVDs, but in reality that hasn't happened.

There's plenty of protection schemes that haven't been cracked, but many times that's because no one really cares enough to bother with it. Some proprietary music format that only U2 uses, on one kind of player, will probably be ignored by crackers.

Comment: Re:Expert. (Score 1) 344

>I remember the days when I would put one radio recording a cassette tape in front of another radio playing a cassette tape and whalla - instant duplicate. No it may not be the same thing as a digitally equivalent copy of an mp3, but it certainly could be pirated.

Yes, but that sounds like crap. However, it is possible to get very, very good copies using analog recording: even if Apple somehow made it ridiculously difficult to make digital copies of U2 music and made it so it would only play on an iPhone/iPad, are they going to eliminate the analog headphone jack too? It's easy to copy music by plugging a cable from a headphone jack into a line-in jack on another computer. Even if they eliminate the headphone jack and make you buy digitally-connected headphones which use encryption, at some point there's a DAC and an amplifier to play the analog sound into your ears, so anyone handy with electronics could tap into the amplifier output.

However, all of this is bound for failure: what kind of moron would buy a song that can only be played on one device? Apple does not completely control the music market, and there's a lot more Android phones sold now than iPhones. Any proprietary Apple scheme won't work on Android.

Comment: Re:This isn't scaremongering. (Score 1) 490

by Grishnakh (#47938165) Attached to: Scotland's Independence Vote Could Shake Up Industry

Just think about this. Imagine the extremely religious and militaristic southern states with their own military and nuclear weapons. Now imagine that there would be virtually no one to contest the idea when they decide that the gays and atheists in the north-east need to be put to death.

You don't think the northeast would have its own military and nuclear weapons too?

Russia is militaristic to a far greater degree than the South and has nuclear weapons, and is extremely anti-gay (far more so than the South), and we don't see them running around killing gay people all over Europe.

Prediction is very difficult, especially of the future. - Niels Bohr