Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Its laugh track is a crime against humanity (Score 1) 332

While the laugh track itself is so awful I think it gave me cancer, the worst part is not the laughter itself but how the actors have to pause after pretty much every second line and wait for the laughter track to die down before they deliver the next lines. This makes the show painfully slow to watch and the interactions are terribly disjointed. There's simply no flow to the dialogue.

The other worst thing is pretty much every other aspect of the show.

Comment Re:Its laugh track is a crime against humanity (Score 1) 332

That "picture" along with the caption implying they have a live audience is pure misdirection. The first thing to notice, is despite it looking at first glance like 3 segments of seating for a show, making for a large audience - it is actually several shots of the same space with different people in it. The windows at the rear are a dead give-away in two of those shots. They actually use only the members from one of those shot for each showing I believe.

Now the audio part - what they actually do is record each episode and edit it down. This is then shown to an audience(s)and they record any laughter and reactions from the audience. They track, double track and overlay all the laughs to obtain the thick hearty sounding amount of laughs that they want the show to sound like it receives. Weak laughter can be tracked over from 5 or more showings to thicken the sound right out. Strong gags would only need a couple of over-dubs.

Comment Re:Paved with good intentions... (Score 1) 246

...or, you could just read those communications with Al'qaeda that you say are still on that computer. In fact, you most likely had, or you wouldn't be doing a home invasion on the American dream. And let's face it, if the bomb isn't in the place it was constructed, then it's 99% likely it's already been exploded at it's target location because real life isn't written by script writers trying to pad out a 42 minute long TV episode.

There's an old philosophy that those who wrestle with demons, become demons. The moment you cross the line and start torturing people you've become every bit as reprehensible as the people you hate.

Comment Re:Obligatory Jeff Goldblum... (Score 2) 447

The difference there is that your driving record could be based on verifiable facts taken from the public record. "You had an accident in 2013 where at trial you were found 50% at fault." "In 2012 you pled guilty to driving 75 on a 55 road when you paid your traffic ticket." This is purely random digits, assigned out of spite, fear, hate, love, admiration, or whatever. Worse, it might be digits that are bought and paid for by the account owner (hire a sock puppet army to boost your score) or as a result of an attack (hire a sock puppet army to slag someone because they cheated on your sister, or because they dress funny, or simply because you're a sociopathic troll.)

Comment Re:Short sighted and wrong. (Score 1) 317

The merchants here change readers every three years or so.

That's because the terminals are required to be more and more secure to protect the mag stripe data, and their older terminals were out of compliance with the standards. This has been a massive exercise in kicking the can down the road.

With chip cards, the game changes fundamentally when security moves into the chip. But until the whole ecosystem of cards, mag stripes, and web entry of account numbers gets fully converted to EMV, the data passed out of the chip can still be stolen and abused at some of the weakest links. Hopefully the "liability shift" will convince these weakest links they need to convert to chip readers before they get stung with crippling losses because they allowed their systems to be used for fraud.

Comment Short sighted and wrong. (Score 1) 317

The problem is that there are six million merchants out there with mag stripe readers, and nobody can force them all to change to EMV overnight. It took Europe four years to get even to 90% adoption rates. Until such time as most all retailers take them, the crappy mag stripes are required for backward compatibility. And if we say "this does nothing", that's wrong. It takes us one step further down a path we need to fully traverse.

Comment Re:What does the retailer need? (Score 1) 105

They all communicate through NFC. The differences are in the back end payment systems. To the consumer, there is no real difference except in what cards are supported or how their particular device works. Apple made Apple Pay easy to use on their phones because they use biometrics (fingerprints), and easy on the Watch because you have to log in only once, when you put it on; it auto-locks when you take it off. We'll see how easy Samsung made it: do you have to enter a PIN every time, or do they have some other magic?

Comment Re:Use your toolchain (Score 1) 58

Having seen Waterfall inaction, I find that story sadly believable. The moment you start siloing what should be a single person's responsibility, the turf wars emerge to amplify the chaos. And a developer's responsibility should encompass everything from testing through coding to design.

Comment Use your toolchain (Score 5, Insightful) 58

Presumably you are using modern tools to compile and build your software, manage source code, and manage your project work. Many of these tools will either incorporate or integrate with bug tracking software and testing frameworks. If there's a native bug tracker available, select it. If there's a native test framework available, use it.

What you need is a least-friction option, where testers, analysts, and developers can all see the bugs, write up the bugs, test the bugs, and fix the bugs. You don't need "The Most Advanced Framework Available Today", you don't need "The Best Test Tracking and Reporting Software Ever Produced", you need a solution that works well for all the people involved. Having a third party tool where the developer has to stop working, log in to the bug tracker, read the bug details, switch back to the development environment, make some changes, switch back to the bug tracker, write up the findings, switch to the test framework, execute a test, switch back ... All that switching is a huge productivity killer. The smoother the integration, the more effective and efficient the engineers will be - and that's where your expenses really lie.

Here's the problem. Some organizations say "hey, let's evaluate and buy the bestest test software out there" without giving a thought to the developers. So the QA department runs off on their own, buys a tool, and starts building tests in it that the developers can't run. If the developers can't run the tests, they don't know if they're fixing the problems correctly, so they waste tons of time. Worse, if a developer makes a change that breaks some test, they won't know until that result is reported to them, possibly days, weeks or even months later, depending on your QA cycles. During the intervening time, the developer continues to write code based on their original faulty change, creating technical dependencies on what may be a completely flawed base assumption. When the test finally reveals the flaw, the developer's choices are limited to: A) rewrite everything according to the better architecture uncovered by the flaw, or B) make a scabby patch so the test passes. If you choose A, the software's release will be expensively delayed. If you choose B once, you'll likely choose it again, you're incurring technical debt, all your software is likely to be crap, and no good developers will want to work for you. The correct answer is of course C) don't produce tests the developer's can't run themselves on demand, or tests that aren't automated as a part of the build process.

Comment Re:Key rules. (Score 1) 86

Internally, their version numbers are still consistent, but the fact that their product names include numbers (sometimes related to the date, sometimes related to the internal version number, and sometimes related to the previous release) makes for a confusing mess. Windows 3.5, Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows ME were all built on top of DOS and were not built on the NT kernel. They were all just windowing systems, and none of them deserved to be called an operating system. Underneath, they ran MS-DOS, which was a more or less compatible version of PC-DOS. They were all 16 bit operating systems.

Windows NT 3.5.1 was Microsoft's first actual multitasking OS, followed by NT 4.0, which was followed by Windows 2000 (NT 5.0). XP was Windows NT 5.1, and was when the Windows NT kernel finally went mainstream to the home users (and introduced most to a 32 bit OS.) Vista was NT 6.0. Windows 7 was NT 6.1. Windows 8 is NT 6.2, and Windows 8.1 was NT 6.3. Starting with Windows 10, they actually renumbered the internals so it's reporting itself as NT 10.0.

On top of all of those, you can try to overlay their server versions. At least they're all named according to the year of their intended release.

As marketing is clearly in charge of OS naming at Microsoft, don't look for consistency in future versions. The only thing you can count on is the unpredictability of their naming schemes. Their next release is equally likely to be called Windows 7331, Windows Forever, Windows 64, Windows 11, or Windows 2018. Internally, it'll probably still just report itself as NT 10.1.

Comment Re:Far far easier to do this... (Score 1) 278

Digital movies can be watermarked all the way down to the exact screening. I remember seeing a movie that had a few flashes of birds, the number and pattern of the birds was a fingerprint identifying the theater and showing. But not all schemes are that ugly or visible. All they have to do is insert and remove a few frames from a few scenes, altering the durations slightly, and they have a non-viewer-disruptive unique fingerprint of the showing that survives anything -- including cam-rips.

"You show me an American who can keep his mouth shut and I'll eat him." -- Newspaperman from Frank Capra's _Meet_John_Doe_