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Comment: Re:One Sure Way (Score 1) 275

by Lonewolf666 (#47878377) Attached to: California Tells Businesses: Stop Trying To Ban Consumer Reviews

Yet it is frequently attempted, up to and including outright fraud. A common and legal variety is pricing stuff highly and trying to create an impression of highest quality, but only providing average quality. An example that comes to mind is BOSE hi-fi equipment ;-p

On the other hand, decent quality has a minimum price, dictated by material and work costs. In that direction there is a limit.

Comment: Re: What's wrong with Windows Server? (Score 1) 613

by Lonewolf666 (#47830189) Attached to: You Got Your Windows In My Linux

No. It degrades over time for entirely different reasons. But it *does* degrade over time.

No, it doesn't degrade, it stays the same. If you change the environment or system it runs on that is a different story.

And that is what happens to most environments, even if the user does not desire it.
Sometimes because the vendor of a (software) part of the environment stops supporting it and the need for support dictates going along with the switch.
Sometimes because hardware becomes obsolete and disappears from the market. Then you can't get replacement parts for your existing machines anymore and eventually they will "die out" from defects. Switching to a different system becomes a necessity.

Recent example:
End of life for Windows XP, users move to Vista / Windows 7 / Windows 8 because using unpatched XP on the internet is considered a bad idea.
Some sloppy programming practices using the installation folder as data storage don't work anymore, because Microsoft has added "virtualization" (hidden redirection to the user profile, Vista and Windows 7) or put a UAC dialog before write access (Windows 8 IIRC). Sloppily programmed software works no longer as it used to. Granted, those programs were bad ones to start with but here is your case of "indirect degradation".

Comment: Re:Doom by boredom (Score 1) 170

I can see your idea working in some e-sports league where people are there for the PVP challenge.

Not so much in a MMO where friends/clans want to do PVE and play together.

From what I've read about WOW (to use great-great-GP's example) its most difficult content was designed for 40 person raids. I guess it is difficult enough to gather 40 people to show up at raid time. If an unspecified proportion of them get shifted to higher or lower player classes, it might become impossible. And outright banning some people from trying those raids "because they are not good enough" would probably not good marketing.

Comment: Re:Doom by boredom (Score 1) 170

These days, things are either easy or impossible. That is not fun at all.

This.

Too easy or too hard are both unfun. There is a right degree of difficulty, and it is not the same for everyone.
Publishers who make their games easier to help newbies get into the game will lose veteran players who get bored.

Comment: Re:Slow on the take (Score 1) 441

by Lonewolf666 (#47810151) Attached to: In Maryland, a Soviet-Style Punishment For a Novelist

Going a bit off topic....

"Fascism" was a political system practiced in several Mediterranean European countries in the early part of the 20th century. It usually entailed economic and cultural coordination by the state, a personality cult around a leader, a single-party or sham democratic system, national idealism, and militant, expansionist foreign policy. It's applicability outside of this narrow context is hotly contested, you can start fights among historians by asking "Was Falangist Spain Fascist?" or "Was Nazi Germany Fascist?"

Narrowing it down to "Mediterranean European countries" seems overly pedantic in the context of comparing countries elsewhere to Fascism. Without that limitation, Nazi Germany certainly qualifies:

- economic and cultural coordination by the state: check, at least for the media (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G...). For big corporations, it may not have been quite so one-sided. Both my school knowledge and Wikipedia are a bit vague on that.
- a personality cult around a leader: check, the "Fuehrer" was a very important figure.
- a single-party or sham democratic system: check.
- national idealism: sorta check, it was partially replaced by racist idealism.
- and militant, expansionist foreign policy: Certainly, Germany invaded neighbor countries until the Allies reacted by declaring war.

Comment: Re:I PC game, and have zero reason to upgrade (Score 1) 98

by Lonewolf666 (#47806905) Attached to: AMD Releases New Tonga GPU, Lowers 8-core CPU To $229

With the "current gen console" you probably mean the PS4 or XBOX One, as they are available already?
Then the said mid level gaming PC might be equivalent. Maybe a bit better but not greatly superior. On the other hand, since the PS4 / XBOX One are fairly new, they might be the "standard" for the next five years or so.

But when the PS5 comes out, whenever that happens, all bets are off.

Comment: The other way round (Score 2) 294

by Lonewolf666 (#47805777) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Linux-Friendly Desktop x86 Motherboard Manufacturers?

I like to use ECC even on the desktop, and yes there are ways to do it. At a cost.

On the Intel side, the CPU is not really the problem. "Small" Xeons like the E3-1225V3 are attractive for their price/performance even if you run them on desktop boards and don't use ECC support. In that setup they are like i7 parts with slightly lower clock speeds.
  For the board though, the choices are limited and you have to shell out an additional 100 Euros or more for a "small server" board, because the typical desktop chipsets don't support ECC.
Add the extra price for the ECC RAM, maybe 50 Euros difference depending on how much RAM you want, and you end up paying something like 150 Euros extra.

AMD used to be really nice, with most processors (pre-Llano all desktop parts but Sempron) supporting ECC RAM and some mainboards also supporting it. The mainboard choices for ECC support were a bit limited, cheapskates like Asrock usually did not bother to support ECC RAM. So you might have had to pay 10 Euros more for the board, plus the above 50 Euros extra for the RAM. Made maybe 60 Euros difference to have ECC RAM in your rig.
Sadly, their APUs don't support ECC. AFAIK the FX line still does, but it is not really attractive compared to recent Intel models.

Comment: Re: LibreOffice (Score 2) 190

by Lonewolf666 (#47746725) Attached to: Munich Council Say Talk of LiMux Demise Is Greatly Exaggerated

There are sometimes small changes in table layout too.

One case where I can confirm a small incompatibility with certainty are the backgrounds in table calls. Word offers some patterns there that are missing when loading the document in LibreOffice, for instance dotted backgrounds. This is not a conversion issue, it is simply a feature that LibreOffice does not have.

Things like that are the reason why using Word and LibreOffice in parallel tends to have some friction. So when switching to Linux, best switch everything if you can and mandate ODF as new document format.

Comment: Re:NT is best (Score 1) 190

by Lonewolf666 (#47746663) Attached to: Munich Council Say Talk of LiMux Demise Is Greatly Exaggerated

Err! Win NT6.0 was Microsoft Windows Vista and we know how everyone loved that. Even with NT6.1 (Microsoft Windows 7) you still could get constant reboots and BSODs (first hand experience). Still NT6.2 (MS Win 8) and NT3 (MS Win 8.1) may me stable to you but that GUI IMHO looks like something designed by a 5 year old.

Agreed about the GUI in Windows 8 (and it is desktop-user unfriendly too) but Windows 2000 and above were stable enough for me, good hardware and drivers given. I have, however, seen a few cases where hardware problems or flaky drivers caused BSODs.

You write that you switched to Linux over seven years ago. That would be in the XP timeframe. Did you use the same hardware as for XP, or something different?

Comment: Re:This is going to backfire horribly (Score 1) 64

by Lonewolf666 (#47705731) Attached to: AMD Launches Radeon R7 Series Solid State Drives With OCZ

1. Agreed, that sounds stupid.

2. AMD has a somewhat tarnished reputation for the performance of their FX CPU line. So far, NOT over lack of reliability. I hope they won't acquire that now...

[digression]From Nvidia, the only really bad thing I remember is that their mobile Geforce 8xxx had a reputation for dieing early. The 8600 GT in particular.
They are known for not caring about Open Source, and that is why I would currently prefer an AMD GPU (even if the GeForce 750 Ti looks really nice in terms of performance/watt).
But I'm probably in the minority there, and Nvidia's binary drivers have a good reputation and fairly long support time frames, longer than binary AMD drivers anyway.

For a real mess, consider this: http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=MTMyODA (status of Intel Poulsbo on Linux ;-)

Comment: Re:Marginally better (Score 1) 64

by Lonewolf666 (#47705561) Attached to: AMD Launches Radeon R7 Series Solid State Drives With OCZ

Somewhat inexpensive, but not quite so cheap that losing a SSD to a premature defect wouldn't sting a bit. In my neck of the woods, a 256GB SSD still costs around 150 Euros.

Unlike GP, I might take a chance on a product with less than 5 years of warranty if the vendor has a track record for good quality. OCZ does not, and I doubt if the acquisition by Toshiba has instantly fixed things. Or if Toshiba branded SSDs have not suffered from the bad influence ;-)

So Toshiba would have to offer a good warranty, where others may get a free pass.

Comment: Re:Follow the money (Score 1) 160

by Lonewolf666 (#47683549) Attached to: The Flight of Gifted Engineers From NASA

I would suggest that the current malaise at NASA extends through the Shuttle program. Operating a first generation prototype for over a quarter of a century? Hell, just flying the same five vehicles for a quarter of a century (not even replacing those that crashed) is hardly a sign of a place that will thrill an innovative young engineer. It's more like a railway museum than a space agency.

Flying the same expensive equipment for 30 years and more is not unusual if it lasts that long. For instance, look up the timeframes for which military aircraft stay operational. Many from the 1970s are still around.

I agree with GP though that failing to build a replacement in time does not make NASA look good.

Comment: Shortage propaganda versus wages (Score 1) 268

If you don't think there is a shortage of software developers in the US, why are developers in the US paid so much more than ones in Europe?

Also, there is no hard threshold to define an "actual" shortage when you're talking about such a large job market.

Curiously, European employers (in Germany in particular) are complaining about a "shortage" too and have lobbied with some success for easier immigration of qualified workers. It looks quite similar to the discussion and critique about H-1B workers in the USA, see also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H-1B_visa#Criticisms_of_the_program.

Personally, I think a "shortage" can best be detected from the development of wages, relative to other fields where the necessary education is similarly difficult and time consuming. For instance, does the average engineer earn significantly more than the average M.D., lawyer or business manager?

For Germany, AFAIK the answer is "no" and the complaints about a "shortage" are mostly propaganda. I'm not as familiar with the US labor market but the anecdotical evidence I pick up here and there tends to say "no" as well.

Many people are unenthusiastic about their work.

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