Slashdot stories can be listened to in audio form via an RSS feed, as read by our own robotic overlord.


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).


Comment: Re:Please tell me this is satire (Score 1) 320

by Kaitiff (#49135681) Attached to: Use Astrology To Save Britain's Health System, Says MP

The sad part is that having a cross section of society includes people that think the movement of the stars has some sort of pseudo-psychic effect on people that can be predicted and influenced. Another great example of people believing in and depending on flights of fancy are the various religious sects of the world that still have an undue amount of influence in the major political systems of the world. To be honest, as shocked as I was at first when I read this, how is it any different substantively than falling to your knees/falling prostrate on the floor and praying for guidance on decisions that effect us all. In the US we had a president that claimed that he was told BY GOD to become president and wage war on other countries. Not only did he become president once, he got re-elected. I don't see how being a palm reader, astrologer or diviner of tea leaves is any different.

Comment: things for catastrophic failure in metal... (Score 1) 106

by Kaitiff (#49073049) Attached to: Nanotech Makes Steel 10x Stronger

You need a pre-existing flaw for there to be a catastrophic failure in a metal. One of the reasons modern steel is so much stronger than steel made 100's of years ago (in general) is that we have learned to control the cooling of the metals to create more uniform crystal formation, and to fill interstitial defects with other elements, like carbon. We had to study metallurgy some when I was in the nuclear power program in the navy and you'll have to forgive me, I"m 30 years out from learning this stuff but it would seem to me that if you could 'fill in' or create layers in the steel it would be far less likely to fail. I would imagine the '10x' statement is somewhat hyperbolic and doesn't mean you could replace a structural beam with something the size of a soda straw, it probably means that when they perform a charpy V-notch test on the metal substrate it can withstand 10X stress in one direction compared to the untreated metal. Regardless, very interesting piece.

Comment: Keep on the Borderlands... (Score 1) 59

by Kaitiff (#48694961) Attached to: The Making of a 1980s Dungeons & Dragons Module

Best damn module EVER. :) I had bought a second hand copy of the original boxed set, and with it the guy threw in that module since it was low level and he'd played the hell outta it. I introduced it to my little brother and all my friends and there weren't any caves safe for Kobold or Orc or Bugbear to be found! I never played a character to very high levels, I found that D&D was more fun at the lower levels. At the point where you had to fight Dragons, Gods and Giants I lost interest. I moved on to more technical RPG's with a better combat and magic system in later years but the fun I had playing that old original set of D&D boxed set will never fade for me.

Comment: head (Score 1) 570

by Kaitiff (#47564631) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

I've just recently w/in the last year dealt with exactly the same situation. Wife was in a very serious accident and even though her medical coverage was excellent we still have a bunch of little bills that are in collections. All of it is covered or in error, but trying to clear it up, you almost have to hire a bounty hunter to find and kill the bastards.

In my household it's policy not to discuss anything with a bill collector other than to try and get the name of the original debtor. I pay what I owe, but trying to discern what that IS will drive you insane.

Comment: Silly question really... (Score 1) 570

by Kaitiff (#47564585) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

This is a country of the rich, for the rich and by the rich. The banks are the militant arm of the wealthy. How better to control the unruly unwashed masses than to keep them perpetually in debt? We did away with the concept of a debtor's prison in this brave new world.. and replaced it with the concept of debt as a commodity that can be sold off to the highest bidder. All hail the endless mind-numbing auto-calls and foreign call centers that call and harass you about debts you don't owe or even remember!

Comment: Lets not get uppity here Americans.... (Score 1) 112

We have it no better here. 60 minutes did an expose` showing how with just a little bit of physical access to a voting machine (which majority party representatives have since they are 'responsible for checking the machines before elections) you can make any result you want come out of our electronic voting machines regardless of what the input was in the voting booth. There have only been 2 times in recorded history that the actual outcomes in a voting district severely varied from the actual results once tallied.. once in Florida... and once in Ohio.. swing states that got baby Bush elected on each of his terms of office. In both cases requests were made for the paper records to review the results and in both cases the requests were denied. The things that make you go HMMM....

Comment: There's another option here... (Score 1) 99

by Kaitiff (#46525211) Attached to: More Troubles For Authors of Controversial Acid-Bath Stem Cell Articles

If someone published something that would upset the applecart so to speak, what better way to discredit and marginalize their efforts than to cast aspersions and draw attention away from the actual science and off to some scandalous allegation. Has anyone bothered to double check the accusations yet? A method of creating pluripotent stem cells like this could seriously derail research already underway and redundant if it were true, and that sounds like a very strong motive to call into question the original findings in an effort to keep grant money's.

Comment: the important thing is someone is making money... (Score 1) 207

by Kaitiff (#46293843) Attached to: Chevron Gives Residents Near Fracking Explosion Free Pizza

I mean c'mon guys, this is Capitalism at it's finest. The people living in the town are to blame.. if they had capitalized on the liquid gold under their feet then no-one else could have. I mean, someone has to get rich out of this don't they? There is no sense of responsibility or ownership of anything anymore.. it's just a 'faceless' corporation making multi-billions of dollars of profit per quarter.. you simply can't expect anyone to actually CARE do you?

What I think is poetic justice is the fact that the price of gas from this whole 'drill baby drill' bullshit and massive exploitation and ruination of our own backyards has benefited us (the american people) almost exactly zero. Notice the price of gas lately? I think it's actually gone up now that we are actually outproducing the middle east in oil. MASSIVE natural gas shortages too... even tho we are out producing Russia in that too. Prices soaring.

Comment: Re:More HDMI dongle devices coming (Score 1) 104

by Kaitiff (#46148815) Attached to: Chromecast Now Open To Developers With the Google Cast SDK

Actually, the chromecast can cast it's own wifi. It's not all the powerful but for sitting in the hotel it would work fine. When I set mine up, I had to choose between my existing wireless network(s) or the chromecast one. So you could plug it into the hotel tv, get it up and connect to it and not have to use any other wireless. You would still need some sort of uplink to GET your content on your laptop or your phone but that's on a different network connection.

Comment: great question (Score 1) 420

by Kaitiff (#45963623) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Suggestions For a Simple Media Server?

I too was looking around at different solutions. I have Serviio working on an old XP box, but silly me I wanted to get moved to something a little more stable and permanent. A friend donated an XP Media Center PC that's a few years old, so I tried 2 or 3 different Linux media players, and all failed. XBMCbuntu looked like a great idea until I found out that it simply will NOT work on a machine using an ATI video card, which I have. Was excited to try LINHec, found out that it will only run on a machine that has X64 capable process which (thanks Intel) the processor in my little media center pc will NOT do. I had seen PS3 media player but really? I don't HAVE and never will have a PS3, seems to me that with the name it's pretty specifically not for me. The sad part is it was a simple install on XP that was a literal no brainer and a task worthy of the labors of Hercules for Linux. Oh well.

Comment: Fight now and fight hard! (Score 1, Insightful) 317

by Kaitiff (#45938025) Attached to: Building a Better Bike Helmet Out of Paper

I'm a motorcyclist, not a bicyclist (currently). For years non-motorcyclists enforced a law on us requiring the use of a helmet. This is not simply a safety issue and shouldn't even get to an argument of 'for' or 'against', it's a freedom of choice issue. As an adult you have the right to choose, or you should have. As a caveat, I'm not totally against helmet use or the safety they bring and I wear a helmet on my motorcycle probably at least 60-80% of them time depending. I have friends whose lives were saved wearing a helmet and I have friends that died from the use of one through rotational torque to his neck and spine. The issue at hand is not about the relative safety or danger of helmet use; it should be about CHOICE.

Choice is a freedom, and once lost I can attest to how difficult it is to regain. Allow people to make their own INFORMED choices, do not legislate it. Regardless on which side of this issue you come down on we should all be able to agree that forcing 'good behavior' on a full grown adult is wrong.

Comment: I'd Love to update to Mavericks... (Score 1) 380

by Kaitiff (#45919603) Attached to: Many Mac OS Users Not Getting Security Updates

but the one app I have to have on this company laptop is Parallels, and as it so PAINFULLY and FREQUENTLY pops up in my face, I can't run the version I had just bought a few months ago with Mavericks... like that wasn't a known quantity or anything. I guess I just don't ever get another security update, because I refuse to feed a company money for an 'upgrade' to their product (like it wouldn't work anyways) every time a security update is released. BLAH

Comment: There's a reason... (Score 1, Insightful) 370

by Kaitiff (#45619829) Attached to: Get Ready For a Streaming Music Die-Off

why streaming services can't make money... the established music CARTELS that have a stranglehold on everything having to do with entertainment media. If the 'middle man' between the artists and the people providing their music to the masses (the streaming services) were to evaporate like they should we could all have music and artists that produce music could make a lot more money for their work, not to mention the streaming services would actually net a profit at the same time. As long as the blood-sucking cartels are allowed to reap the lions share of the profits no-one else is going to be able to. RIAA and the MPAA are nothing more than modern day leg breakers that have been granted pseudo-legality to propagate their monopoly. Without the established dinosaur industry giants in media we would have better music and better movies et al, and have them at a much more reasonable price.

Comment: Re:End of the Epidemic (Score 4, Insightful) 163

I think you are overlooking the fact that EVERYONE is infected with a version of the zombie virus. It doesn't matter HOW you die, when you die you come back a zombie if any significant portion of your brain stem is intact. In a post-apocalyptic event there will be a significant percentage of people that die without a zombie doing the killing. The latest few episodes of The Walking Dead addresses this pretty well... a simple flu bug (albeit a nasty one) has a very high mortality rate, and sometimes within minutes of succumbing the dead rise up and attack the living. You are also assuming that everyone knows exactly what is going on and how to 'kill' the zombies. It always did aggravate me that there were no military enclaves that survived long term; they should have the training and perspicacity to remain organized enough to survive.

Comment: China's gonna be sorry.... (Score 1) 519

When the nips activate Mecha-Tokyo! Hell by now they probably have the entire island mech-afied. We've been playin around with robots that look like bees or hummingbirds, and they have cars and buildings that turn into giant robots! Haven't you guys seen Voltron? That wasn't a kids cartoon, that was PROTOTYPE!!

Oh, so there you are!