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Comment: Wildly inconsistent is putting it mildly (Score 1) 147

by jandrese (#49346621) Attached to: Many Password Strength Meters Are Downright Weak, Researchers Say
Those meters are all over the place. As the article mentioned, the majority of them only count the number of characters in each class, so they're pretty terrible at actually telling you how hard your password is to crack. Some of them are set to an absurdly high level too. The default Ubuntu meter for instance requires something like 16 characters before it will even consider your password good. I saw one where it wouldn't take your password unless it was at least 14 characters long, had all classes of characters in it (upper, lower, number, symbol), no more than two of the same class together, and "no patterns". At that point you just kind of have to accept that I'm going to stuff it in a password manager even though your site expressly forbids me recording my password elsewhere.

Comment: Re:OSX (Score 4, Insightful) 160

by jandrese (#49344973) Attached to: GNOME 3.16 Released
The scrollbars on Gnome are so obnoxious now. You have to mouse over a tiny 2 pixel strip to get them to appear, then super precisely move your mouse to get to the part where you can interact with it, and one pixel off causes it to disappear and make you hunt for the invisible 2 pixel strip again. I'm sure they're great if you're on a tablet and just mashing your thumb in the general vicinity of the scrollbar, but for mouse users they're just outright terrible and enabled by default. If you have a distro like Ubuntu it's fairly hard to enable sane scrollbars again too, you have to know what esoteric package to install to fix the behavior, it's not installed by default.

Comment: Re:What a stupid idea (Score 1) 214

by jandrese (#49344533) Attached to: Russian Official Proposes Road That Could Connect London To NYC
Are you thinking of building bridges to Iceland and then Greenland? That would be a considerably more impressive undertaking than building a bridge across the Bering straight (which is already impressive).

Of course the other problem with this road is that it will be snowed in half of the year and it is primarily linking up two sparsely populated areas with little industry or population. They're not talking about laying down cement from London all the way to NY, they're assuming you'll use existing roads for the majority of the trip. This is just about filling in a few gaps (including the incredibly expensive one over the ocean).

That said, if you talk about maybe just a ferry service over the strait this isn't completely unreasonable. You would need something to link up Alaska with the lower 48, but I doubt Russians would be paying for that.

Comment: Re:He's just in a hurry to get to the future (Score 1) 78

by mcgrew (#49338655) Attached to: The Kevlar Kandidate Wants A 7-Day Workweek, No Days Off

I don't vote party, except that I avoid both D and R whenever there's a candidate who doesn't want to put half the people I know in prison for smoking pot.

If anyone but Bruce Rauner had run against Quinn I would have voted for the Republican, becuase Quinn just wasn't a good governor. I think Rauner will be even worse, maybe even as bad as Ryan(R) or Blago(D), both were crooks. I don't know if Rauner is a crook but his policies are terrible. There were only two named on the ballot, so it was indeed a choice between two evils.

Look, Republicans are against the Social Security I paid into all my life and am now enjoying, against unions, without which I would have no pension, against the single payer health care system which has countries with it in place enjoying half the costs we face with far less infant mortality and longer life spans (Obamacare is really Romneycare in disguise); against the Medicare I again paid into and will get in a couple of years; against food stamps (that's simply un-Christian, yet they claim to be Christians?); against taxes (again, an un-Christian stance). Tell me, what Democrat views that the Republicans don't share are detrimental to me, a middle class retired guy?

But both parties are against pot legalization, for our insanely long copyrights, and quite a few more where there really isn't a valid choice.

Comment: Re:Is today Tuesday? (Score 1) 6

by mcgrew (#49338157) Attached to: We've been spelling it wrong for over a quarter century

Well, when a child says bye-bye, it sounds like a contraction (b'bye), but bye-bye is not a contraction. It's more like Cory Doctorow spells sidewalk: side-walk. Wnat contraction uses a hyphen instead of an apostrophe? Not bye-bye, it isn't a contraction of anything.

As to "SyFy", that's a trademark, not a word. It only applies to that bad cable channel. Hi-fi and sci-fi aren't contractions of high fidelity and science fiction, but new words made out of old ones.

I guess that could argue the validity of e-mail and e-books, though.

Comment: Re:Forget that stupid idea... (Score 1) 1087

by shutdown -p now (#49321623) Attached to: Obama: Maybe It's Time For Mandatory Voting In US

How on earth would you enforce this idea that everybody votes? Fines? Prison time? How?

How about you go and look at how it's actually implemented in the countries that do that?

TL;DR version: it's fines, but in practice it's virtually unenforced. The fact that it can potentially be enforced, and very occasionally is, seems to be sufficient to drive turnout over 90%, which is "good enough".

Would you allow people to hire proxy services to cast their vote when they cannot be present for some reason that comes up on election day?

No, you just allow people to excuse themselves provided they had a good reason to not vote.

Of course, what IS ridiculous is this idea that we can somehow force people to exercise their right to vote in a country where we cannot universally require photo ID's.

Photo IDs aren't relevant here at all. There's a list of eligible voters, and there's the list of people who voted. When you come and vote you tell your name and it's put down there. Sure, in the absence of ID you can put someone else's name there, and then they'll be marked as voted - but you won't be, so you might get fined. I can't think of any realistic scenario where you'd actually need to check ID to enforce this to a "good enough" level.

But sure, we can have universal photo ID requirements, too. So long as they're free of charge and readily issued, I don't see a problem.

The real problem here is folks don't get taught that it is their civil duty to vote. Really, all they get taught is that it is their civil duty to protest and riot and junk like that. Most are so disillusioned by politics that they feel OUTSIDE the system, when in fact the PRIMARY way to get change is to VOTE. Most cannot be bothered, most think their vote doesn't count, when the truth is that only a vote not cast is the one that doesn't count. So your solution is to pass a new law? Yea, that's the absolute wrong move.

Can you explain how this is different from requiring people to do jury duty? It's also their civil duty, and it also carries fines etc with it if you don't do it.

User Journal

Journal: We've been spelling it wrong for over a quarter century 6

Journal by mcgrew

I'm surprised that this hasn't been addressed by the academic communities. Someone with a degree in English or linguistics or something like that should have though of this decades ago.

This word (actually more than one word) has various spellings, and I've probably used all of them at one time or another. The word is email, or eMail, or e-mail, or some other variation. They're all wrong.

Comment: Re:Getting Older (Score 1) 4

by mcgrew (#49318947) Attached to: Are printed books' days numbered?

Yes, if I were in college I'd certainly only lug one book around -- my notebook computer. I'd keep all the schoolbooks on the computer.

As to elderly eyesight, when I was a kid, all the geezers wore glasses, but few young people. Now all the youngsters have glasses and few geezers do. Why? The young are ruining their eyesight with computers, tablets, and phones much like I ruined mine with books.

But when I was a kid, cataract surgery was still rare. The patent on the CrystaLens should expire around 2023, so most oldsters won't need any glasses, since it not only cures cataracts but nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. It won't be long before I have to get the other eye done.

You know you've landed gear-up when it takes full power to taxi.