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Comment: Re:Welcome to the world of the Cloud... (Score 2) 42

by Animats (#47576003) Attached to: Fotopedia Is Shutting Down; Data Avallable Until August 10

... where your data disappears and your apps stop working the moment the company goes under.

Right.

Last night I went to a panel in SF on the "House of the Future", which all participants interpreted to mean "hooking your appliances up to the Cloud for access via phone apps". When your cloud-based home control provider goes bust, (or just discontinues the "obsolete" interface your devices used) your gadgets will stop working.

People with cloud-based garage door openers, you have been warned.

Comment: Re:None of them. (Score 1) 363

by hacker (#47574435) Attached to: Which Is Better, Adblock Or Adblock Plus?

I use this on my Android device with AdAway with tremendous success. I also use Android Firewall with some custom rules to block annoying apps from trying to send my data through servers in China, Romania, etc.

Here's my AdAway custom lists:

http://adaway.org/hosts.txt
  http://hosts-file.net/ad_serve...
  http://pgl.yoyo.org/adservers/...
  http://someonewhocares.org/hos...
  http://winhelp2002.mvps.org/ho...

Use these, and you'll have a nice, clean, tight setup. I also use Squid on my LAN, and my router is configured to send every packet through Squid (custom iptables rules on the router; a Buffalo Wireless running dd-wrt), and on the Squid side, I block about 12,000 separate ad URLs, domains and sites, so again, the experience for anyone on my segment, is nice and clean and fast.

The side benefit of Squid, is that I can see every single request, phone home, ping, malicious or otherwise, that my devices try to do, and I can permit, prohibit, redirect or block entirely based on schedule, as I wish.

You'd be surprised how chatty a standard iPhone and Android device are, without "training" on the Squid/AdAway side.

Comment: Quantum mechanics is real, like it or not. (Score 5, Insightful) 135

by Animats (#47568933) Attached to: More Quantum Strangeness: Particles Separated From Their Properties

That's a nice result. It's in accord with theory. It doesn't match human intuition based on large-scale objects, but it's the way the universe really works. The theory in this area is well understood; Feynman's "QED" has a good overview.

Ever since the double-slit experiment, it's been clear that this stuff is real. Over the last few decades, more of the weirder predictions of quantum electrodynamic theory have been confirmed experimentally. This is another predicted event confirmed. Nice work.

Comment: Re:$1000, not $300 (Score 2) 43

by Animats (#47568555) Attached to: A Look At the Firepick Delta Circuit Board Assembler (Video)

I guess you're supposed to stencil the paste in first and the put it in a heat oven as if you had done the pick and placing by hand.

Their FAQ contains:

  • TBD - Solder paste dispensing
  • TBD - Selective Reflow via custom ATC head

That's what would make the machine useful for prototyping. Printing a solder paste stencil can be done on a laser cutter, but you need access to one, or you must send the job out. Laying down solder paste by hand with a little syringe on each pad (probably under a microscope) takes longer than manually placing parts and is Not Fun.

Printing solder paste with an ink-jet printer type head has been done. If they can make that work, that will be a big win.

Comment: Re:Let Them Cheat! (Score 1) 121

by Baldrson (#47566003) Attached to: Nuclear Missile Command Drops Grades From Tests To Discourage Cheating

Oh I should add that once you are in this regime, the term "hire" may be somewhat different than it is in other circumstances. I mean a more straight-forward means of dealing with cheating is to punish cheating with a degree of severity that matches the potential harm inflicted by having cheaters with their fingers on The Big Red Button -- so the circumstances of the "employment" may involve such any aspects of such punishment as are practically applicable. Military justice isn't burdened with your usual Civil Libertarian constraints.,

Comment: Let Them Cheat! (Score 1) 121

by Baldrson (#47565877) Attached to: Nuclear Missile Command Drops Grades From Tests To Discourage Cheating

If you have people that are even remotely tempted to cheat that have their fingers on The Big Red Button, you have a serious threat to civilization.

Having an incentive to cheat is a great way to elicit this potential. The proper national security response is not to remove the incentive to cheat but to increase the detection sensitivity and then hire the guys who cheated to compete with others who cheated to design test regimes that are more likely to elicit cheating while also being more sensitive to detecting cheating.

Comment: As a general comment... (Score 1) 170

by tlambert (#47563727) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Where Can I Find Resources On Programming For Palm OS 5?

As a general comment... it's pretty funny that this wouldn't be an issue, since they complied with the GPL as they were required to do, and published their sources.

Only the politics of Open Source is such that the projects that they published the changes for were not updated to include the changes, because they felt that it was not their responsibility to update their projects to include someone else's changes to their projects. They felt, instead, that it was the responsibility of the people making the changes to join their projects, and then make the changes with the editorial oversight of the community.

This is somewhat ironic, since they wouldn't have published the sources in the first place, if it hadn't been for the license.

So it's interesting to me that you can more or less not comply with the license by complying with it, and that the license is only effective for however long your product and company are around, and, if not picked up by the community to be carried forward, get lost after a short period of time, even if the company continues to exist.

I guess I wonder if it's legal to sell remaindered product (or used product) without offering the sources, per the terms of the license, or if, after that period of time, the products become illegal to transfer the binary licenses, since the originators are no longer around, and you cant appeal to them in order to get around your personal obligation, as the seller/reseller, to make the sources available any more (but you, as the middleman, failed to take advantage of the offer while it was possible to do so).

Probably, projects need to be a little less pissy about integrating third party changes, fixes, and extensions back into their main line.

Comment: Re:SDK available here: (Score 1) 170

by tlambert (#47563461) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Where Can I Find Resources On Programming For Palm OS 5?

Following the link to the SDK gives a 404. Palm development tools were never readily available even when the platform was popular. Now they're almost impossible to find. Obstructing access to development tools is one sure-fire way to kill off a platform.

Pretty sure they want it dead.

Comment: Re:SDK available here: (Score 1) 170

by tlambert (#47563457) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Where Can I Find Resources On Programming For Palm OS 5?

Perhaps next time you should do a little searching around for the fille PODS_1_2_OpenSrc_Orig_Mods.zip which can no longer legally be distributed before you ask me to distribute it, rather than merely giving you enough information that you could find it if you were smart enough to be able to do the type of programming that the OP is asking to be able to do in the first place, since it's going to be pretty useless to you otherwise.

Comment: $1000, not $300 (Score 1) 43

by Animats (#47563223) Attached to: A Look At the Firepick Delta Circuit Board Assembler (Video)

Their presentation for investors quotes a sale price of $1000, not $300. At that price they might be able to do it. How well they'll do it remains to be seen.

Their presentation is all about their XY positioning mechanism. But that's not the problem. The hard problem is dispensing solder paste reliably and precisely, sticking the component down, and using hot air to solder it into place. As with low-end 3D printers, most of the problems are where the weld/soldering action takes place. They don't say much about how that's done.

The important thing is doing a consistently good soldering job. Nobody needs a machine that produces lots of reject boards.

Comment: Re:Arneson (Score 1) 182

by hawk (#47563091) Attached to: How Gygax Lost Control of TSR and D&D

The "glory years" identified were my Jr & Sr years of high school . . .

The "other" things in circulation at the time were largely either supplements to the the original booklets (and supplements), such as Arduinn, Spellcaster's Bible, and Runequest (farther removed), or completely orthogonal, such as Travellers & Runequest (also TSR).

A bit of this, a bit of that, a few articles from Dragon, and so forth.

And the moronic arguments as to which system handled dragon breath more "realistically", for crying out loud. D&D (blast goes off in the middle of people, but the second row doesn't get shielded from the first) or something goes off between two people, but one takes half as much damage as if the other wasn't there (Arduin)

hawk, who has the original Arduin supplement somewhere (before the bra was added)

He keeps differentiating, flying off on a tangent.

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