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Comment: Re:um yea... (Score 1) 570

by Holistic Missile (#47562273) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
A few years ago, a couple of guys I work with were in serious credit trouble. I told them to each cut up a credit card. They didn't want to, so I rounded up about 4 other engineers, and we all broke out a credit card and cut them up at the same time.

Some of the gals from customer service walked by as we did it, and they started acting like we were slaughtering puppies! For weeks they said that they couldn't believe we would do that! It was pretty hilarious, yet pathetic at the same time.

Comment: Re:So! The game is rigged! (Score 1) 570

by Holistic Missile (#47562187) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
There is some truth to this. I have lived essentially debt-free for 10 years now. I have a few credit cards with no balance on them, and occasionally will finance a car, which gets paid off in 50-60% of the term of the loan.

Over this time, all other things have been equal with my credit history, but each time I take out an installment loan, my FICO score goes up 20 - 30 points over 3-4 months. Once the loan is paid off, it drops down again over about a year.

I bought a new motorcycle over the winter, and financed part of it. FICO score is on the rise again! But in a year, it will be falling again, as the loan will be paid off.

Also, a few years ago, during the rash of bank bailouts, I had several credit cards cancelled for 'lack of activity'. I'm sure it was the banks trying to improve their balance sheets to make it look like they did something with the bailout money other than steal it.

Comment: Re:Buyout value is now ... (Score 1) 51

by Holistic Missile (#45837931) Attached to: Partially Censored Database From Snapchat Intrusion Released

Apparently not much, at least not to stockholders: http://www.google.com/finance?q=NYSE:TGT

Back the time window up to 12/13-12/17. I would wager the small dip in value was seen as an opportunity to buy, especially in the Christmas season. Also, one of the the wonders of automated trading.

Comment: Re:The 8086 is 16-bit (Score 1) 829

by Holistic Missile (#45760411) Attached to: Microsoft's Ticking Time Bomb Is Windows XP

Thanks for all of that information. In any case, it is kind of fun running 30 year old software at the start of a class to show the beginnings of the spreadsheet...

By the way, you can download a working copy of Visicalc from Dan Bricklin's website: http://www.danbricklin.com/history/vcexecutable.htm

(It is really just a curiosity at this point...)

Comment: Re:What 8-bit software on XP? (Score 1) 829

by Holistic Missile (#45760139) Attached to: Microsoft's Ticking Time Bomb Is Windows XP

I actually ran Visicalc directly on Windows thru XP and even Vista, at the beginning of any Excel training that I've done for the last 15 or so years, until I no longer had a 32-bit OS to run it on. The copyright notice says (c) 1978-1981; I'm pretty sure it was 8-bit PC XT software, and it ran directly on Windows thru Vista, as long as it was a 32-bit OS.

It is an interesting way to start out the class, and it's fun to point out that what you get for ~$100.00 has sure changed! Now I have to run it on an emulator, due to Windows 7+ only being offered in 64 bit versions.

+ - Hidden Message from Weather Service

Submitted by Holistic Missile
Holistic Missile (976980) writes "CNN Reports a hidden message from the folks working (without paychecks) at the NWS in Anchorage:

"Sometimes, it pays to read between the lines. At least that may be the message --and, more accurately, the hope — of workers at the National Weather Service office in Anchorage, Alaska.

The message can be found in an official forecast put out at 5 a.m. (9 a.m. ET) that seems, at first glance, routine with its discussion of air pressure, wind speeds and weather systems.

But if you line up the first letters of each word from top-to-bottom in the forecast, under the heading "Analysis and Upper levels," there's something else there: P-L-E-A-S-E-P-A-Y-U-S...."

The text of the forecast is on their web page. Some of the comments in the story's discussion are rather interesting, including a few people sending their own similar messages."

Comment: ADempiere (Score 1) 163

by Holistic Missile (#44955761) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Open Source CRM/ERP System For a Small Business?
Definitely worth a look. Open source version of Compiere - ERP/CRM and more. You don't mention what line of business you are in, but this is a flexible system you can tailor to your needs. I am in the process of implementing it for a hobby (photography) that has recently become (if accidentally!) profitable. Postgresql backend, native client and web client. Great price, too - free (as in beer and speech)!

Support is available, as well.

Comment: Re:Sending all my email as CAPTCHAs. (Score 1) 286

... I just need to come up with a captcha program that will do an entire paragraph.

Try one of the 'ransom note' fonts that are available, and save your document as a JPEG. That may be enough obfuscation to make OCR difficult/unreliable. Of course, you can type up your paragraph first, then change the font. Much easier on the eyes (and the mind) while typing!

A committee is a life form with six or more legs and no brain. -- Lazarus Long, "Time Enough For Love"

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