Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:Demand (Score 5, Insightful) 189

by Svartalf (#48939129) Attached to: New Study Says Governments Should Ditch Reliance On Biofuels

They're all fatally flawed. The biggest problem with biofuels as they currently are is that we're not really doing them right. We're taking food and converting it to fuel- when we should be producing the fuel as a recycling process which isn't the same thing and isn't as "polluting" and the like. It's not a solution, per se, to fuel- but it is a solution to convert what'd go into landfills and the like into something else useful as it can be used for fuel and feedstock for plastics, medicine, etc.

Comment: Re:Rent a truck, rent a PC (Score 1) 297

by Yaztromo (#48937623) Attached to: The iPad Is 5 Years Old This Week, But You Still Don't Need One

A Windows laptop is less expensive than the cellular Internet subscription needed to connect a tablet to EC2 or Azure while away from home.

Maybe where you live, but the cost of my iPad 2 3G service is $15 a month. On top of that, if you I've in an urban centre, you're probably well covered by WiFi anyway. So that $15 goes quite a long way. I can pay for 2 years of 3G service at the cost of what a Windows laptop would cost me, with the benefit being (wait for it)...I don't have to carry a crappy sub-$300 Windows laptop with me everywhere I go. The EC2 Windows instance living in the cloud I use most frequently is a quad-core with 24GB of RAM and a few TB of hard disk space -- and you're not going to find a cheap sub-$300 Windows laptop with those sorts of specs.


Comment: Re:Rent a truck, rent a PC (Score 1) 297

by Yaztromo (#48937253) Attached to: The iPad Is 5 Years Old This Week, But You Still Don't Need One

To complete this analogy, someone who can use a car most of the time and only occasionally needs to do these "tons of things" can rent a truck, such as a moving truck from U-Haul or a pickup truck from The Home Depot. Is there a comparable PC rental ecosystem?

Of course there is. You install an RDP or VNC client on your phone or tablet, take a few minutes to setup a cloud OS instance on your favourite cloud service (EC2, Azure, whatever), and connect. You now have the full PC experience on your phone or tablet, running whatever you want, from wherever you want, for however long you want it.



VP Anthony Moschella Shows Off Makerbot's Latest Printers and Materials (Video) 44

Posted by timothy
from the now-you-can-make-fake-wood-designer-shapes-on-the-3d-printer-at-your-local-makerspace dept.
You may have read a few weeks ago about the new materials that MakerBot has introduced for its 3-D printers; earlier this month, I got a chance to see some of them in person, and have them explained by MakerBot VP of Product Anthony Moschella in a cramped demo closet — please excuse the lighting — at the company's booth at CES. Moschella had some things to say about materials, timelines, and what MakerBot is doing to try to salvage its open-source cred, despite being a very willing part of a corporate conspiracy to sell boxes of Martha Stewart-branded extruder filament — as well as a few unremarkable things that the company's ever-vigilant PR overseer decreed Moschella couldn't answer on the record for reasons like agreements between MakerBot parent Stratasys and their suppliers. The good news for owners of recent MakerBot models: they'll be upgradeable to use the new and interesting materials with a part swap, rather than a whole-machine swap (it takes a "smart extruder" rather than the current, dumber one). And the pretty good news for fans of open source, besides that the current generation of MakerBots are all Linux-based computers themselves, is that MakerBot's open API provides a broad path for 3-D makers to interact with the printers. (The bad news is that there's no move afoot to return the machines' guts to open source hardware, like the early generations of MakerBots, but STL files at least don't care whether you ship them to an FSF-approved printer to be made manifest.)

Comment: My experience is different. (Score 3, Insightful) 29

by khasim (#48927043) Attached to: Book Review: Designing and Building a Security Operations Center

The truth is that many firms simply don't have the staff and budget needed to support an internal SOC. They also don't have the budget for an MSSP. With that, Mike Rothman of Securosis noted that these firms are "trapped on the hamster wheel of pain, reacting without sufficient visibility, but without time to invest in gaining that much-needed visibility into threats without diving deep into raw log files".

In my experience it is not the budget but the politics.

Is your company's security worth the expense of an additional tech? Or are office politics the reason you cannot get an additional tech?

Does whomever is in charge of your technology have the authority to say "no" to requests from other departments? And the political capital to make it stick?

I've seen too many examples of companies "suffering" from the problems their own decisions/environment created.

Retrofitting security is not the answer.

Comment: Re:Best short programs (Score 1) 199

by Yaztromo (#48921551) Attached to: Computer Chess Created In 487 Bytes, Breaks 32-Year-Old Record

It would be cool to see which programming languages could have the best short chess programs.

I'd nominate Haskell, scheme and prolog to try it in.

To make things fair, I think you'd have to define the valid set of languages as general purpose languages. I could see coming up with a chess-specific language that would be super-efficient in that the language would already have known chess properties as built-in elements.


Comment: Re:Legions of crappy programmers (Score 1) 209

by Yaztromo (#48918493) Attached to: Why Coding Is Not the New Literacy

Sigh, forcing people to "learn to code" is just going to create legions of substandard programmers.

Alternately (and somewhat more likely), it will create a legion of future business people with software needs who know how to articulate those needs in a logical way when trying to write a specification.


Comment: Re:Escaping only helps you until a war. (Score 2) 336

by khasim (#48911881) Attached to: Davos 2015: Less Innovation, More Regulation, More Unrest. Run Away!

The Army alone has about 500,000 soldiers. A lot of them are in support roles but a private military also needs support.

Where are the families of the people in the private military? Because if they have to go back to the USofA (the "enemy" in this scenario) to visit Mom and Dad then there's going to be a problem. So you'll need room on the uber rich estate for the families of your military. And your support personnel.

Which brings up the infrastructure to support those families. Schools, hospitals, etc. Which means more support personnel.

Which means more schools and hospitals, etc.

Of course you can skip that if you want to. But remember who has the guns.


Getting Charged Up Over Chargers at CES (Video) 33

Posted by Roblimo
from the slip-me-some-of-that-juice-Bruce dept.
First we look at Skiva Technology and their Octofire 8-port USB charger that pulled in nearly five times the requested amount from a Kickstarter campaign. (The 'pulled in X times the requested Kickstarter amount' is becoming a common product boast, isn't it?) Then, for MacBook owners who are tired of having their chargers or charger cords break, we take a brief look at the Juiceboxx Charger Case. These two power-oriented products and WakaWaka, which we posted about on January 9, are just a tiny, random sample of the many items in this category that were on display at CES 2015. Timothy was the only Slashdot person working CES, so it's shocking that he managed to cover as many (hopefully interesting) products as he did, considering that even the biggest IT journo mills don't come close to total coverage of the overwhelming muddle CES has become in recent years. (Alternate Video Link)

Comment: Re:"A hangar in Mojave" (Score 3, Informative) 38

by Bruce Perens (#48908157) Attached to: Virgin Galactic Dumps Scaled Composites For Spaceship Two

That's actually what it's like at "Mojave Spaceport". Hangers of small aviation practicioners and their junk. Gary Hudson, Burt Rutan, etc. Old aircraft and parts strewn about. Left-over facilities from Rotary Rocket used by flight schools. A medium-sized facility for Orbital. Some big facilities for BAE, etc. An aircraft graveyard next door.

Comment: Re:Think of the children! (Score 5, Insightful) 408

by khasim (#48901777) Attached to: Anonymous Asks Activists To Fight Pedophiles In 'Operation Deatheaters'

I'm sure that they have the best of intentions. The problem is with the underlying assumption that there is some kind of conspiracy.

Once you accept that there is a conspiracy, there is no end to it.

If they were just interested in cataloguing the various cases then that could be done by scripts and Google news. If something is not getting media exposure then it is more likely to be because of lazy "journalists" than because someone is trying to bury the story.

Comment: Re:Really? (Score 3, Interesting) 99

by Svartalf (#48899205) Attached to: Why We Still Can't Really Put Anything In the Public Domain

Considering that RMS didn't dream these licenses up, but rather Eben Moglen, you might want to contemplate who knows more about this... The law professor that actually teaches on this subject or someone claiming that there is a right of revocation in there that's effectively free of Promissory Estoppel and the like on the subject. Just because there's a law on one side doesn't mean other laws don't cause OTHER, equally bad problems on the subject and effectively preclude the hypothesized notion out of box.

The shortest distance between two points is under construction. -- Noelie Alito