Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


+ - Nuclear Fusion PoC in a year, 100MW prototype in 5...->

Submitted by ItsIllak
ItsIllak (95786) writes "The huge news is that this isn't from some scientist that won't allow open analysis of their work, it's from Lockheed Martin. They believe they can have a working production model of a 7x10' reactor that generates 100MW through a deuterium-tritium fuelled fusion reaction. Sorry — I can't write any more, need to go and buy LMT equity."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re: Digital image stabilization makes a comeback. (Score 1) 178

by ItsIllak (#44429549) Attached to: Nokia Lumia 1020 Video and Photo Shoot Preview

As far as I'm aware, the only thing is lacks is any sort of aperture control. That's because it's fixed at, from memory, F2.2.

Does that mean it's not the same as a DSLR? Yes, that's exactly what it means.

Does it mean it's much better than anything else you can get in a phone (and most things you get in point-and-shoot)? Yes, it does.

But the killer app here is the 41mp. Each photo sensor is awful - look at 1:1 zoom and you'll see so much noise it'll give you headaches. But that's not the point. The point is that you can scale that down to 21mp and there's be much less noise. Put it through noise ninja and there'll be less again. Bring it down to 5mp and it'll, in some circumstances - common circumstances - be up there with the Micro 4/3rds cameras.

I'll be buying one, and I'll be buying the camera grip with the extended battery built in. When I'm out as a tourist or a proud dad, I'll carry them both. From day-to-day, I'll just carry the phone and be ready to take far better photos than almost everyone else.

Comment: Re:Raspberry Pi (Score 1) 119

I just don't get how it's actually supposed to do it.

One of the independent coding initiatives (in fact, most of them) in the UK had a bunch donated to them by Google. My club of 15 kids got three and I'm supposed to give them out to the kids. I'm almost 100% certain they will sit in a cupboard and never get used - I mean, what's the point? 99% of families have a laptop - that includes a keyboard and a screen, without that - for most people - a computer is useless.

Comment: Re:What is behind the changes. (Score 1) 119

Decisions on equipment like this are usually made at school level (by the head and by the board of governors). I don't recall any mandate to buy interactive whiteboards.

That said - I can't see why you use that example - they are amongst the most engaging pieces of equipment in the classroom and allow the teachers to "buy in" materials to really add interest to their lesson plans.

The sad thing is how the schools are ripped off by vendors, in fact LEAs pretty much mandate that schools should be ripped off by forcing them to use specific vendors. Something rotten in the state of Denmark...

Comment: Re:too early (Score 2) 119

I've taught 9-11 year-olds programming and about 80% of the class is capable of learning enough to solve simple problems given to them. Frankly, the 20% are unable to concentrate on anything other than video games or TV - they're the ones that would be staring into space or playing football every waking hour 20-30 years ago.

20-30% can excel and really grasp some or all of the basic concepts in such a way that they can solve significant novel problems and even set those problems for themselves.

Comment: The problem: Too many cooks... (Score 2) 117

...but the government isn't one of them.

We now have Code Club, Coder Dojo, Coding in Schools and half a dozen more individuals and groups working towards roughly the same goals. Each one of these groups is effectively cannibalising each other's target audience. All these people at the helm of each of these groups needs to be congratulated and then locked in a room with all of the others until they can agree a single national plan.

Personally I've gone with Code Club and teach a weekly hour class in my kids' primary school (kindergarten). I've brought one set of kids through the first of three "terms" of coding, been given 3x RPi to give out to semi randomly selected members of the club and plan to do a better job next year. The weekly tasks do a pretty good job of introducing practice in the basic concepts of programming (variables, variable scope, loops, conditions etc..) but weren't explicit enough to allow the kids to use them outside the context in which they were taught. To be honest, I think much of it was done by mimicry rather than understanding.

Comment: Poorly thought out service. (Score 1) 215

by ItsIllak (#42570833) Attached to: Amazon AutoRip — 14 Years Late

I read about this on the BBC news website (, missing the first line of the article that said it was US only, I logged into the service to see what I'd bought that was going to show up. Immediately, Beautiful South, Gaze popped up. Strange, I didn't actually remember buying it but it's possible. Then that was it. So I go through my purchases and, like others, there were heaps of popular CDs that I'd bought as gifts.

Apart from the obvious problem, I put a message in to Amazon wondering why Gaze was the only track I got. About an hour later I got a call (during the work day, to my mobile from a hidden number!) from a confused CS rep. Eventually established that it was US only and that Gaze was some weird quirk and I shouldn't have received it.

Somehow, this seems a bit of an ill conceived dodgily implemented service. I bet it sinks without a trace. I assume Amazon are having to pay for all these tracks (at some massively discounted rate) and are doing it to try to convince people to use their service. That's some financial commitment - wonder if the physical CD prices are about to be hiked...?

+ - Google's assault on Windows Phone continues with a block on maps-> 3

Submitted by ItsIllak
ItsIllak (95786) writes "Reports started coming in last night that Google have targeted the users of Windows Phone devices and begun to deny access to their maps in-browser service on the increasingly popular mobile devices. On the back of their recent withdrawal of Exchange Activesync from Google Apps, the announcement that they would not be writing their apps for the platform, and several other decisions this brings into question the company's "Do No Evil" motto when it comes to users who choose competitors systems."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Purpose of a union (Score 1) 761

Has anyone who's posted so far actually ever been in a union? They don't just try to protect incompetence or continually raise pay rates (though, yes, they do tend traditionally tend to try to do that as well). They also enforce worker protection laws. They provide legal protection and legal insurance. They provide workplace representation, worker representation.

Seems like a bunch of turkeys voting for [Thanksgiving|Christmas]...

Comment: Re:I code in C#, (Score 4, Insightful) 586

by ItsIllak (#41817303) Attached to: The IDE As a Bad Programming Language Enabler

Totally agree - VS is a great IDE and one that really helps with code navigation, standards compliance and more. Gotta think the GP has no idea how to effectively use all of the features even the worst of modern IDEs bring. I suppose, if Eclipse is the best you've had, notepad++ looks promising but if you've used VS - there's no reason to use anything else.

"What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite." -- Bertrand Russell, _Sceptical_Essays_, 1928