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Comment: Re:Does It Matter? (Score 2) 277

by ncc74656 (#48943149) Attached to: VirtualBox Development At a Standstill

Are there some other core VirtualBox features I'm not aware of that keep people pinned to it?

Its support for passing USB devices through to guests is pretty good. I have a Gentoo VM on a Win7 box for the sole purpose of continuing to use a scanner that the manufacturer doesn't support on Win7. The only area where it's let me down in the past was with trying to mess with iPhone firmware (such as for jailbreaking) from a Windows VM on a Linux host...don't know if it was something weird Apple was doing with USB or something else. Have other virtualization options caught up with this?

Also, VirtualBox console windows are less of a hassle to deal with than VMware console windows. Even with their respective guest addons installed and active, VMware is still enough of an annoyance that I'd rather RDP or SSH into the VM in question. (In fairness, VirtualBox is running locally, while the VMware VMs are on a couple of ESXi 5.x boxes accessed through vSphere...maybe their desktop virtualization tools, which I've not used in eons, are better.)

Comment: Re: Why? (Score 1) 173

by ncc74656 (#48943073) Attached to: Microsoft Launches Outlook For Android and iOS

Exchange client on Android isn't horrible.

This is because the ability of other apps to integrate with Exchange is getting too good.

DavMail is a nice little bit of software that allows just about anything to talk to Exchange. I have it on my computer at work so I can use Thunderbird (and Lightning) instead of Outlook. It sits in the system tray, only popping up a notification when a newer version is available. While I've not tried running it on a server so that multiple people can use it, my understanding is that you can do that with it as well.

Comment: Re:Majority leaders home district (Score 1) 174

For a more entertaining version of how the Soviets influenced America and operated on her soil, I recommend watching 'The Americans' on FX network. Set in the 80's during the height of the cold war, the plotlines in the show are based roughly on actual events documented in the book, and from other sources of KGB history.

Seconded. Season 3 just started; I'm still catching up on season 2.

Comment: Re:DVD (Score 1) 250

by ncc74656 (#48918689) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Medium For Personal Archive?

Well, recordable Blu-ray discs use an inorganic dye, so they should last longer than DVD-Rs and CD-Rs. The manufacturers typically claim a lifespan of 100+ years.

Beware BD-R LTH media, which use pretty much the same type of organic dyes as are normally used for CD-R and DVD-R as a cost-cutting measure. BD-R HTL uses phase change in an inorganic alloy to record bits, which will almost certainly outlast BD-R LTH media (and probably DVD-R and CD-R, too).

I've been using these for archival recently. (I'm almost out, too...was going to put in an order, but (1) they're currently out of stock and (2) their per-disc price may have gone up substantially since my last purchase. :-P Will need to double-check once they're shipping again, but my last order was about $27 for 25 discs, shipping included.)

Comment: Re:get off my lawn (Score 1) 247

by ncc74656 (#48885263) Attached to: Dish Network Violated Do-Not-Call 57 Million Times

Charging for caller ID on landlines is a scam (like pretty much everything about telecommunications billing), but I've never seen cell phone service without caller ID.

I'm guessing you're not old enough to have ever had analog cell-phone service. I don't recall if caller ID was even offered as an add-on service, but I know I didn't have it with my phone and my service. Vibrating call alert and an 8-character dot-matrix alphanumeric LED readout (so you could attach names to the phone numbers stored in memory!) were expensive enough.

Comment: Re:I grew up 30 miles from here, in N.VA (Score 2) 784

by ncc74656 (#48832289) Attached to: Parents Investigated For Neglect For Letting Kids Walk Home Alone

In kindergarten, I walked over a mile to/from the school every day unaccompanied. So did all the other kids in the neighborhood.

I walked to and from school in kindergarten. Google Maps says it was a little bit over a half-mile. The only issue that came up was on the first day of school, when not knowing what the buses were all about, I ended up on one. It didn't take long to get that straightened out, and it only happened once.

I suspect the events described in TFA are a consequence (not necessarily unintended) of our hyperlitigious society...consider, for instance, the sledding bans that have been popping up like metastatic tumors all over the place lately, or that you can't get someone to build you a pool with a diving board.

Comment: Re:Listening, maybe. Discovery, no! (Score 1) 126

by ncc74656 (#48790431) Attached to: Radio, Not YouTube, Is Still King of Music Discovery

Radio, on the other hand, even if you hear a piece of music that you like, the chance of actually being told the name of the artist is close to zero.

Many car radios at least will display artist/title information on FM, if the station provides it. If they don't (or if yours doesn't do that), you can fire up SoundHound or something similar and see what it says.

Comment: Re:Nope (Score 2) 331

by ncc74656 (#48790313) Attached to: Would You Rent Out Your Unused Drive Space?

Data migration and expanding RAID containers is a major PITA. I absolutely loath the task!

That's why you don't use RAID. Instead, use something more flexible. I've been running Greyhole for a while now. Adding storage doesn't require shifting files around (unless you want to rebalance storage), you can use drives of different sizes, and you can control the level of redundancy you use (more for important files, less for stuff that's easily replaced). You can yank a disk out of a Greyhole installation and read all of the files off of it with standard file-copy tools.

Important stuff that doesn't take too much space (documents, Git repos, etc.) is backed up daily to Tarsnap. Less-important stuff (movies, music) and larger files (photos) get dumped to BD-R and are stored in binders in my desk at work; images are prepared with dvdisaster for added error recovery capability and are burned to single-layer BD-R HTL media.

Comment: Re:Related - the clack of wheels on the tracks (Score 1) 790

by ncc74656 (#48789805) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Sounds We Don't Hear Any More?

Thank God for Texas! Fuck that sub-zero northern weather. I don't understand why people live like that. Ignorance that there's warmer climate??? Boggles my mind.

My parents moved from Phoenix to Dayton a few years ago...they had gotten tired of triple-digit temperatures for 7-8 months of the year and, as they put it, wanted four seasons. As for me, I'm still in Las Vegas, 26 years after we moved here.

As for sounds you don't hear much anymore, try this: multi-engine prop planes with piston engines. The sound of a B-17 (or anything similar) taxiing or flying overhead is different from any airplane you're more likely to run across. There's no turboprop whine, and four radial engines sound nothing at all like the 4- or 6-cylinder boxers you'll find in smaller aircraft. (For a sample, pop in your copy of Airplane!, where they dubbed this kind of sound over 707 flight footage as a joke.) At this point, about the only time you're likely to come across it now is at the larger airshows where they can afford to bring in an old bomber or cargo hauler (they're more expensive to keep flying than fighters).

Comment: Re:Interesting (Score 1) 196

by ncc74656 (#48754711) Attached to: Dish Introduces $20-a-Month Streaming-TV Service

Cox charges $10 extra for Internet-only service. It was still a big win to drop TV. With a DVR in the living room, we were paying about $160 per month (and that was without HBO, Showtime, etc.). I'm now paying just $63 per month for (IIRC) 50 Mbps down/5 Mbps up (or is it 50/10?). For what little TV I watch, there's a Netflix Blu-ray subscription, Usenet, and Bittorrent.

(Even at this level, local TV is still available in HD and maybe 40-50 cable channels are available in analog SD. Last time I used that was to tune in Fox News on election night. Most of the time, I can't be bothered to deal with live TV.)

Comment: Re:And this attack ad is brought to you.... (Score 1) 141

by ncc74656 (#48628473) Attached to: Who's To Blame For Rules That Block Tesla Sales In Most US States?

They establishment Republicans have already rolled over with the passing of Cromnibus. I expect that if the push Jeb Bush to the front there will be record apathy among conservatives in the 2016 election.

To amplify on that point, never underestimate the ability of the Republican Party to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. :-P

Comment: Re:Rethuglican hypocrites (Score 1) 141

by ncc74656 (#48628415) Attached to: Who's To Blame For Rules That Block Tesla Sales In Most US States?

the composition and political thrust of the parties changed dramatically with the Republican southern strategy of the 60s

Let me put you some f'in knowledge.

And more.

And even more.

On top of that, how do you explain the Democrats' only really starting to lose their stranglehold on southern-state governorships and legislatures in the '90s and later?

There's no sense in being precise when you don't even know what you're talking about. -- John von Neumann