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Comment: Sci fi (Score 4, Interesting) 49

by Iamthecheese (#48930019) Attached to: Brain Implants Get Brainier
Brain enhancements are a tall order. We need:
  • Better knowledge of human brain function
  • Microbots that can evade the immune system
  • Microbots that can move through brain tissue without causing harm
  • Microbots that can link together to from insulated wires, or build insulated wires that are safe in vivo.
  • Microbots that can transmit power and information through several layers of nerve and other tissue

The thing is, we're getting there. These are no longer science fiction: the path to each of these abilities is very clear. And when these abilities converge we'll have matrix style give-me-knowledge-now and complete VR. Not to mention brain augmentation. This future is far, far closer than it seems.

Comment: Re:Social Networking is a mess (Score 4, Insightful) 114

by Iamthecheese (#48896889) Attached to: Twitter Moves To Curb Instagram Links

When old Yahoo made money from its search engine it did so by pushing paid sites as search results, cluttering up the interface with advertisements, and otherwise being intrusive and unpleasant. And it lacked the self-awareness to change this behavior. Rather than saying, "How can we make things better for the user?" they said, "How can we make more money from the user?" So while better search results was on their radar an interface like Google's just never came up as a possibility. That's why they were blown completely out of the water. Google made money as a search provider without using Yahoo-esque tactics by being the first to do what present social networks are doing (analytics) but more importantly by being a place users wanted to go. Twitter is already doing this successfully. Look at their interface: light, efficient, smooth, and fast. And they're very successful. By limiting user actions now they're eating the seed corn. The'll make more money in the short term but in the long term they're pushing users to less limited places.

But I digress. By "social networking" I meant Facebook-esque networking. Attempts to allow comprehensive social collectives to happen. Facebook has fallen far down the monetization rabbit hole in the same way old Yahoo did. The way Facebook thinks is of where to put ads, how to better manipulate users into sub-optimal decisions (such as mis-click capture), how to make games that will best entangle users ... Rather than saying, "How can we make things better for the user?" they say, "How can we make more money from the user?" The money is in having many users and in letting them do what they do, with a completely unobtrusive, subtle advertising network offering things they like and want. When a social network focuses to a massive extent on making the user experience as excellent as possible even if that's less immediately profitable they'll get more than enough market share to make up the difference.

Comment: Social Networking is a mess (Score 5, Insightful) 114

by Iamthecheese (#48896733) Attached to: Twitter Moves To Curb Instagram Links
Social networking sites have forgotten the reason they exist, and the reason people use them. People don't go to a social networking site to be monetized, they tolerate being monetized so long as the social network provides sufficient value.

It's a similar situation to the early days of searching. People didn't go to early Yahoo.com to get the things Yahoo wanted to push, people went to search the internet and tolerated having things pushed at them as long as the search was good enough. But as soon as Google offered a good search with minimal advertising the market spoke very loudly about that kind of thing. I feel like there's a pent-up demand in social networking for low friction, low-bullshit connecting of people. The first social network that offers a superior product and doesn't stand in peoples' way will make a killing.

Comment: Internet Explorer (Score 5, Insightful) 99

Tying whole corporate environments to a particular web browser is the greatest shit show of our time. I get that you don't want to have to support more than one browser but it's not hard to stick to highly standardized i/o that any browser can use. And if your web app is that fragile it says a lot of bad things about whoever designed it.

Comment: Nag, nag, nag, nag (Score 3, Informative) 467

by Iamthecheese (#48889485) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Anti-Virus Software In 2015? Free Or Paid?
I've found only one free antivirus where the nag screens can be turned off and stay off. Panda has treated me right so far and if things keep going this way I'm going to buy the premium version just to support the company. It's efficient, effective, and -- most importantly -- silent.

Comment: I don't buy it. (Score 1) 171

by Iamthecheese (#48873249) Attached to: Hands On With Microsoft's Holographic Goggles
I don't buy it. I don't buy it. To project virtual objects into the real world required precise head tracking and real-time adjustment of virtual images. It also requires a very powerful video card. To project virtual objects and actually make them look solid takes even more power, both in terms of processing ability and brightness. The description of these glasses looks like it came straight from science fiction. I'll believe it when can see and test them myself and not a moment sooner.

Comment: Top-down social control doesn't work (Score 1) 209

by Iamthecheese (#48871549) Attached to: Tracking Down How Many (Or How Few) People Actively Use Google+
Google has some of the best minds in the world but it's still vulnerable to making mistakes, mostly when the information to make the right choices just doesn't exist yet.

Top-down control of the masses just doesn't work when they have freedom of choice. Google didn't leap to the top of the search market on a giant advertising campaign, they lept to the top because they offered something immensely better than their competitors. They don't mind advertising revenue by using market power to force people into their adwords API, they offer a smoother, better written, more intuitive, and more efficient interface that results in less friction and more profit all around. These are important lessons that Google missed when it tried to make Google Plus happen. To get enough people onto a social network you have to offer a social network that's so damn good people want to go there. People have to want to pay the cost of migration. "This lets me comment on youtube" just doesn't cut it.

Maybe it's impossible with today's technology. Maybe there's just no social networking killer app possible. Or maybe they'll hit on the answer this year. Whatever the case Google Plus was dead from the start.

Comment: Re:Only for the first year (Score 1) 570

by Iamthecheese (#48870579) Attached to: Microsoft Reveals Windows 10 Will Be a Free Upgrade
I have no objection to a software subscription service done right. But my definition of doing it right is to keep pushing security updates, API's, and compatibility patches(i.e. non-feature updates) even for expired subscriptions. I have the strong feeling that Microsoft will stop providing ANY updates when the subscriber stops paying. Or even worse: nag screens and eliminating existing features.

To trust Microsoft not to abuse this position would be like loaning money to a heroin addict.

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (6) Them bats is smart; they use radar.