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Comment: Packet radio (Score 3, Insightful) 60

by Mal-2 (#47521005) Attached to: How the Internet of Things Could Aid Disaster Response

And how, way I ask, does packet radio not accomplish the same thing, across considerably larger distances than a peer-to-peer mesh network? The mesh isn't useless, but at some point it still needs to connect to some place with proper connectivity. This may not be within the range of the Internet of Things. Given the right band and the right gear, radio will be considerably slower but also considerably further-reaching. Otherwise I see no substantial use for the IoT that satellites don't already solve.

Comment: Re:Hard to get excited. (Score 1) 129

by Mal-2 (#47464009) Attached to: Mozilla Doubles Down on JPEG Encoding with mozjpeg 2.0

Most videos (at least those linked to from meme-based image sites) are stored in GIF format...

While I don't disagree that the storing videos in GIF format is incredibly inefficient (and annoying), I somehow don't think that "meme-based image sites" are actually a significant fraction of internet bandwidth use compared to websites that use more standard video formats.

Not to mention that our poster child for "meme-based image sites" now supports webm, and the format has become incredibly popular there.

Comment: Re:There's already a Tesla museum, in Belgrade. (Score 4, Interesting) 78

by Mal-2 (#47428605) Attached to: The Oatmeal Convinces Elon Musk To Donate $1 Million To Tesla Museum

Tesla's tower would have done nothing useful, although with 200KW at 20KHz going in, it probably could have lit up fluorescent lamps and gas tubes for some distance around. Since the location is now surrounded by a housing subdivision, rebuilding the tower and powering it up would annoy the neighbors.

It wouldn't have done what he envisioned, but it could well have proven to be the worlds' first VLF radio station. I'm sure it would have crossed his mind to modulate the transmitted power at some point, and any receiving equipment on the other end could easily have demodulated this into an audible tone. Other people were already playing with radio, including modulating it with audio frequencies, but even if the idea wasn't original, it could have provided a viable product for Tesla to market and sell. It would have been accidentally useful, but that's exactly the sort of break Tesla could have used.

Comment: Re:Well that does solve the vertical video problem (Score 1) 139

by Mal-2 (#47422491) Attached to: BlackBerry's Innovation: Square-Screened Smartphones

After 17 years of continuous Dvorak use, I'd dare say my brain defaults to Dvorak, but specifically to where the keys fall relative to the fingers used to press them, not where they actually ARE. Thus, when the form factor changes, such as with a thumb board, I'm starting all over again.

As for the one-handed thing, QWERTY is moderately left-hand biased, which is actually an advantage when the right hand keeps going to the mouse. Also Dvorak is designed with alternation in mind for both speed and comfort, causing one-handed coverage to become a game of Giant Steps.

Comment: Re:Well that does solve the vertical video problem (Score 1) 139

by Mal-2 (#47412681) Attached to: BlackBerry's Innovation: Square-Screened Smartphones

Listen to the words of the serpent I shall not!

For in my visions I have seen The Answer... and it is spelt thus:

',.PYFGCRL

As much as I swear by Dvorak, it's not particularly well suited for thumb-boarding. (Also, not related to Blackberry style keyboards, but it's MUCH worse than QWERTY when it comes to trying to type with one hand on a temporary basis.)

Comment: Re:Christmas is coming early this year (Score 1) 702

by Mal-2 (#47406335) Attached to: TSA Prohibits Taking Discharged Electronic Devices Onto Planes

Quite difficult. C4 has a density of 1.6 gm/cc. So 500g of C4 would occupy 300cc. That is more than half the volume of my laptop, including the case. I would have to strip out the battery, and circuit board. I don't see any way to do that, and have it still work.

I do. Fit in an Aspire One mainboard and battery instead, freeing up the other half of the case for nefarious purposes. Stick in a Raspberry Pi. It doesn't have to be useful, just look functional. You're going to blow it up anyhow.

Of course, said C4 would still be readily detectable by residue and scent, so this isn't a particularly good idea, but it's certainly within the bounds of plausibility.

Comment: Re:Sue them for all they're worth (Score 1) 495

by Mal-2 (#47380953) Attached to: Microsoft Takes Down No-IP.com Domains

I did not bail on No-IP, and within 24 hours they had made unaffected domains available for use as alternates. One of them happened to be serveminecraft.net, which is a quite valid description of what I'm doing with it. Now they've gotten all of their domains back, my old one is working again, and the new one remains in place for the places I've gone and changed it. No-IP wants to know what they can do to retain our good will, and I said, "Please let me renew both subdomains with one captcha, since I didn't want to have two in the first place. Also, if you could increase the time between keepalive captchas, that would be great." That's all they need to keep me happy, and neither one should cost very much at all.

Comment: Re:Legal Precedent? (Score 1) 495

by Mal-2 (#47361923) Attached to: Microsoft Takes Down No-IP.com Domains

Most people I know that use no-ip are people setting up their own minecraft servers its not a hotbed of criminal activivty like MS claims.

For the record, this is exactly what I do with it as well. I sent out messages to some users, but I don't have other means of contact for a lot of them so they're shit out of luck. Also, if my IP address changes (the whole point of using dynamic DNS), they won't know what it is until I send out another message -- and first, I'd have to know.

This is really like saying that because criminals use cars to transport drugs, all cars will be seized until they can be inspected.

Nobody's gonna believe that computers are intelligent until they start coming in late and lying about it.

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