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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: Three Bears Heating & Air Conditioning (Score 2) 216

by Keith Russell (#46993097) Attached to: Who controls the HVAC at work?
Much of our building is converted warehouse space, so the HVAC is rather patchwork. On any given day, regardless of the season, one part of the building will be too hot, one will be too cold, and one will be just right. You won't know what the conditions will be in your part of the building, however, until you get to the office.

Apple: Greenpeace's Cloud Critique Driven By Bogus Numbers 188

Posted by samzenpus
from the check-the-figures dept.
miller60 writes "Apple says Greenpeace has wildly overestimated the amount of power it uses in its data center in North Carolina, and used that bad math to give the company a low grade on sustainability. Apple says it uses 20 megawatts of power at its iDataCenter, a fraction of Greenpeace's estimate of 100 megawatts in a new report on energy use by cloud computing providers. Apple says that its huge solar array and biogas-powered fuel cell will supply 60 percent of the facility's power, not the 10 percent claimed by Greenpeace."

Comment: Re:Few to admit it, but a lot of parents teach thi (Score 1) 1208

by Keith Russell (#39623249) Attached to: Internet Responds To Racist Article, Gets Author Fired

Now let's say that athlete tweets something extremely offensive to thousands of people. Is that sports organization not supposed to punish the athlete for his/her comments? Should brands continue endorsing?

This is exactly what happened to Pittsburgh Steelers running back Rashard Mendenhall. In the days following Osama bin Laden's death, Mendenhall tweeted some misbegotten thoughts that could be interpreted as sympathetic to bin Laden (personally, not as leader of al Qaeda). He tried to explain himself, but just dug the hole deeper, until Champion dropped him as an endorser. The Steelers tend to keep their discipline for stuff like this out of the papers, but it's worth mentioning that Mendenhall hasn't tweeted since last season's training camp started.

Comment: Missing Options out the wazoo (Score 1) 639

by Keith Russell (#38465452) Attached to: In the simplistic left/right divide, I'd call myself
Anarchist reactionary running dog revisionist
Hindu Muslim Catholic
Creation evolutionist
Rational romantic mystic
Cynical idealist
Minimal expressionist
Post-modern neo-symbolist
Armchair rocket scientist
Graffiti existentialist
Deconstruction primitive performance photo-realist
Be-bop or a one drop or a hip-hop lite pop metallist
Gold adult contemporary urban country capitalist

Comment: Whatever happened to my Double X bumper sticker? (Score 2) 92

by Keith Russell (#37898588) Attached to: <em>They Might Be Giants</em> Answers Your Questions

Don't Let's Start was not perceived as a standout track to us or really anyone in our audience until many months after the album was out. A Pittsburgh radio station started playing it like it was a hit song, and that really turned it into something else.

We keep hearing echoes of WXXP in Pittsburgh, even after all these years. That was the most daring rock playlist in the city in the late '80s, but without all the WTF-ishness of WRCT. We'll never see its like again, though, especially with Clear Channel and CBS dominating the market.

Input Devices

USB Foot Controls 123

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the not-just-for-garage-band-any-more dept.
MojoKid writes "When it comes to controlling your favorite PC title, you've got a few options. There's a mouse. There's a keyboard. There's a control pad and the joystick. Now, there's one more option apparently. Keith McMillen Instruments (KMI) announced today the SoftStep KeyWorx multi-touch foot controller, the world's first foot controlled digital interface. Available for Mac and Windows, this controller sits on the floor. The company claims that it has multiple uses for gamers, video editors, programmers, data entry professionals, disabled people, repetitive stress syndrome sufferers, etc. It's both pressure and location sensitive, USB-powered, and contains ten fully customizable keys that remember up to 100 sets of commands for repetitive tasks."

Comment: Re:Hopefully this accelerates its adoption (Score 1) 437

by Keith Russell (#36014182) Attached to: iMac Gets Thunderbolt I/O, Quad-core

Until 480 Mbps high-speed USB was widespread, Apple had specific use cases for USB and Firewire. USB replaced ADB and RS-232 for devices like keyboards, mice, and modems. Firewire replaced SCSI for devices that needed higher speeds, mostly hard drives, but later digital video.

The original iPod was a Firewire device because USB 2.0 was still a paper spec when the iPod was in development. If you were prototyping a new device built around a 5 GB hard drive, and given the choice of a 400 Mbps Firewire connection or a CPU-dependent 12 Mbps USB 1.1 connection to fill that drive, which would you choose? Creative Nomad players from that same era had both USB 1.1 (sloooowww sync, but PC compatible) and Firewire (fast sync) ports, but they were also much larger than the iPod. They also had more space, and were not lame.

iMac Gets Thunderbolt I/O, Quad-core 437

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the lookit-all-dem-ports dept.
fergus07 writes "Apple's desktop lineup has typically pushed users requiring plenty of fast I/O towards the Mac Pro — but the latest iMac refresh has broken the tradition. Quad-core Sandy Bridge CPUs and faster ATI Radeon HD GPUs are welcomed, but it's the addition of Thunderbolt ports (one in the 21.5-inch and two in the 27-inch) that really ups the ante for a number of professional users."

THX Caught With Pants Down Over Lexicon Blu-ray Player 397

Posted by timothy
from the high-end-but-not-high-road dept.
SchlimpyChicken writes "Lexicon and THX apparently attempted to pull a fast one on the consumer electronics industry, but got caught this week when a couple websites exposed the fact that the high-end electronics company put a nearly-unmodified $500 Oppo Blu-ray player into a new Lexicon chassis and was selling it for $3500. AV Rant broke the story first on its home theater podcast with some pics of the two players' internals. Audioholics.com then posted a full suite of pics and tested the players with an Audio Precision analyzer. Both showed identical analogue audio performance and both failed a couple of basic THX specifications. Audioholics also posted commentary from THX on the matter and noted that both companies appear to be in a mad scramble to hide the fact that the player was ever deemed THX certified."

Wait For Windows 7 SP1, Support Firm Warns Users 433

Posted by Soulskill
from the sounds-familiar dept.
CWmike writes "Users should wait for Microsoft to work out the bugs in Windows 7 before jumping on the new OS, computer support company Rescuecom said on Friday. 'From the calls we're getting, as well as our own experience in the past with all Microsoft's operating systems, we're recommending that people stick with their time-tested OS and wait for the dust to settle,' said Josh Kaplan, president of Rescuecom. Citing a litany of reasons, ranging from the risk of losing data during an upgrade to tough economic times, Kaplan urged Windows users to put off upgrading to Windows 7 or buying a new PC with the operating system pre-installed. 'There are some compelling reasons for both businesses and home users to move to Windows 7,' Kaplan said, 'so we're saying "just wait for a bit."' Upgrading an existing machine — whether it's running the eight-year-old Windows XP or the much newer Vista — is particularly risky, he added, especially if users haven't taken time to make a full backup before they migrate their machines. Some users have found that out first hand. Among the top subjects on Microsoft's support forum is one that has put some PCs into an endless reboot loop when their owners tried to upgrade from Vista to Windows 7. Microsoft has not yet come up with a solution that works for all the users who have reported the problem, sparking frustration."

Windows 7 Upgrade Can Take Nearly a Day 706

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the just-sleep-on-it dept.
Eugen writes "A Microsoft Software Engineer has posted the results of tests the company performed on the upgrade time of Windows 7. The metric used was total upgrade time across different user profiles (with different data set sizes and number of programs installed) and different hardware profiles. A clean 32-bit install on what Microsoft calls 'high-end hardware' should take only 30 minutes. In the worst case scenario, the process will take about 1220 minutes. That second extreme is not a typo: Microsoft really did time an upgrade that took 20 hours and 20 minutes. That's with 650GB of data and 40 applications, on mid-end hardware, and during a 32-bit upgrade. We don't even want to know how long it would take if Microsoft had bothered doing the same test with low-end hardware. The other interesting point worth noting is that the 32-bit upgrade is faster on a clean install than a 64-bit upgrade, regardless of the hardware configuration, and is faster on low-end hardware, regardless of the Data Profile. In the other six cases, the 64-bit upgrade is faster than the 32-bit upgrade."

Game Over For Sony and Open Source? 364

Posted by Soulskill
from the forsaken-beards dept.
Glyn Moody writes "Sony has never been much of a friend to hackers, and its infamous rootkit showed what it thought of users. But by omitting the option to install GNU/Linux on its new PS3, it has removed the final reason for the open source world to care about Sony. Unless, of course, you find Google's new distribution alliance with Sony to pre-install Chrome on its PCs exciting in some way."

FSF Attacks Windows 7's "Sins" In New Campaign 926

Posted by samzenpus
from the a-long-way-to-absolution dept.
CWmike writes "The Free Software Foundation today launched a campaign against Microsoft Corp.'s upcoming Windows 7 operating system, calling it 'treacherous computing' that stealthily takes away rights from users. At the Web site Windows7Sins.org, the Boston-based FSF lists the seven 'sins' that proprietary software such as Windows 7 commits against computer users. They include: Poisoning education, locking in users, abusing standards such as OpenDocument Format (ODF), leveraging monopolistic behavior, threatening user security, enforcing Digital Rights Management (DRM) at the request of entertainment companies concerned about movie and music piracy, and invading privacy. 'Windows, for some time now, has really been a DRM platform, restricting you from making copies of digital files,' said executive director Peter Brown. And if Microsoft's Trusted Computing technology were fully implemented the way the company would like, the vendor would have 'malicious and really complete control over your computer.'"

Computers will not be perfected until they can compute how much more than the estimate the job will cost.