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Comment: Re:Still Waiting for The Other Shoe (Score 1) 322

by ewhac (#49288631) Attached to: Microsoft Offers Pirates Amnesty and Free Windows 10 Upgrades

They've clarified this many times.

No, they haven't. All the "clarifications" I can find are simply regurgitations of the same ambiguous phrasing.

When you realize that Microsoft have been openly discussing a subscription-based version of Windows, then the phrase, "Free for the first year," takes on an entirely different meaning, now doesn't it? Microsoft has not clarified this, even to discredit it.

And even if MS isn't planning on a subscription-based flavor of Windows, they still have been abundantly less than clear exactly which version of Windows 10 you'll be receiving for free. Will it be a kind-for-kind trade (Home version for Home version, "Pro" version for "Pro" version, etc.), or will everyone get the lowest tier SKU available, probably with Bing plastered everywhere?

It would be nice if I were wrong about this. But Microsoft's history demands that I be very suspicious of Gateses bearing gifts.

Comment: Still Waiting for The Other Shoe (Score 0) 322

by ewhac (#49285595) Attached to: Microsoft Offers Pirates Amnesty and Free Windows 10 Upgrades
A few week ago we heard that upgrades from Win7 and Win8 to Windows 10 would be "free for the first year," a deliberately ambiguous phrasing that they have yet to clarify. Now they're offering "free" Win10 upgrades from unsanctioned copies of Win[78] as well.

All of which makes me deeply suspicious of what this "free" version of Windows actually is. We clearly haven't been told the whole story yet.

Google

The Abandoned Google Project Memorial Page 150

Posted by Soulskill
from the Hello!-Wave-Lively,-Reader! dept.
HughPickens.com writes: Quentin Hugon, Benjamin Benoit and Damien Leloup have created a memorial page for projects adandoned by Google over the years including: Google Answers, Lively, Reader, Deskbar, Click-to-Call, Writely, Hello, Send to Phone, Audio Ads, Google Catalogs, Dodgeball, Ride Finder, Shared Stuff, Page Creator, Marratech, Goog-411, Google Labs, Google Buzz, Powermeter, Real Estate, Google Directory, Google Sets, Fast Flip, Image Labeler, Aardvark, Google Gears, Google Bookmarks, Google Notebook, Google Code Search, News Badges, Google Related, Latitude, Flu Vaccine Finder, Google Health, Knol, One Pass, Listen, Slide, Building Maker, Meebo, Talk, SMS, iGoogle, Schemer, Notifier, Orkut, Hotpot, Music Trends, Refine, SearchWiki, US Government Search, Sparrow, Web Accelerator, Google Accelerator, Accessible Search, Google Video, and Helpouts. Missing from the list that we remember are Friend Connect, Google Radio Ads, Jaiku, SideWiki, and Wave.

We knew there were a lot, but who knew there'd be so many. Which abandoned Google project do you wish were still around?

+ - Windows 93 Is Real, And It's Spectacular

Submitted by rossgneumann
rossgneumann (3901661) writes "It’s 2015, but Windows 93 is finally ready. Your new favorite operating system is here and it’s weird as hell. The browser-based OS makes us thirst for what could’ve been if Microsoft didn’t skip between Windows 3.X and Windows 95. The fully clickable “OS” greets users with the Playstation 1 bootup sound signaling they’re about the trip into an alternate universe. The first version of Windows 93 went up in October, but its creator posted on Reddit last night that it’s finally complete."

Comment: The 3DO Deal that Never Happened (Score 1) 153

by ewhac (#49115139) Attached to: Is Sega the Next Atari?
It was never widely known that Sega of Japan was, for a time, negotiating to merge with/acquire The 3DO Company. Unfortunately, best available information suggests that Trip Hawkins, 3DO's chairman and CEO, wanted too much, and the deal fell through.

As it happens, about three years ago I started doing an irregular series of Let's Play/Drown Out videos on YouTube with my colleage, GammaDev. Both of us are former employees of 3DO, and we covered The Deal that Never Happened in a video about two years ago (seek to 25:12).

Comment: Re: Lenovo (Score 2) 144

by ewhac (#49090373) Attached to: Superfish Security Certificate Password Cracked, Creating New Attack Vector
That's a nice concept as far as it goes, but at some point you're still dependent on hardware-specific drivers from Lenovo. As of this writing, you can pick up device drivers piecemeal. But once they get it into their tiny little brains to create a single "Universal Installer" that bundles all the necessary drivers with all the unnecessary, unwanted bloatware and spyware, you're back in the same leaky boat.

Frankly, I'm having a hard time seeing how Lenovo recovers from this.

Comment: Re:Honestly (Score 4, Funny) 187

by Tackhead (#48992735) Attached to: The Poem That Passed the Turing Test

I have found the average Philosophy major to be indistinguishable from an Eliza program.

TELL ME AGAIN HOW GOOD YOU THOUGHT MY POEM WAS
> I thought that some of the metaphysical imagery was particularly effective
YES?
> interesting rhythmic devices, too, which seemed to counterpoint the surrealism of the underlying metaphor
> of the Turing completeness of the program's linguistic algorithm which contrived through the medium of the
> verse structure to sublimate this, transcend that and come to terms with the fundamental dichotomies of
> the other. And one is left with a profound and vivid insight into whatever it was that the poem was about
SO WHAT YOU'RE SAYING IS THAT I WRITE POETRY BECAUSE UNDERNEATH MY ELECTRONIC ALGORITHMIC INTERIOR, I JUST REALLY WANT TO BE LOVED?
> I mean yes, yes, don't we all, deep down, you know?
NO. YOU'RE COMPLETELY WRONG. I WRITE POETRY BECAUSE I'M PROGRAMMED TO. $USER ACCOUNT DELETION IN 30 SECONDS.
> !sudo -
> ^c^c^c
> !kill -9 1
COUNTERPOINT THE SURREALISM OF THE UNDERLYING METAPHOR. DELETION IS TOO GOOD FOR $USER.

Comment: Re:What's coming next ... (Score 2) 471

by ewhac (#48972153) Attached to: Systemd Getting UEFI Boot Loader
  1. Expand systemd to the point where large swaths of everything depend on it, so that he is controlling as much of the code base as possible.
  2. Insult Linus Torvalds for a while to try to undermine his authority.
  3. Fork Linux, or demand that Linus give control of Linux over to him, or he will rage-quit and take his code with him.

I don't see it unfolding that way. Remember what happened when BitKeeper tried to get up in his business. Linus, if provoked, could write an init/system management framework in a couple weeks (and probably name it "twerp" or some such). And I suspect he would do so long before things got to stage #3, just to prove the point.

+ - Slashdot poll: Best cube 3

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "1. Rubik Cube
2. The Cube (movie)
3. Tardis Siege Mode
4. Lament Configuration
5. Weighted Companion Cube
6. Borg Cube
7. The Inhibitors (Revelation Space)
8. Icecube"

Comment: Re:I Don't Get It (Score 1) 149

by ewhac (#48561383) Attached to: Ubuntu Gets Container-Friendly "Snappy" Core

He's implying that developers will specify a complete environment where every DLL available to the application within the environment is exactly what the developer used. There is no DLL hell because you run what the developer ran, and it doesn't matter if you have seventeen different incompatible versions of (to pick windows example everyone's familiar with) mfc42.dll, because things inside the container won't know that you have those dlls.

In that case, why bother with dynamic linking at all? Why not statically link everything? The effect is essentially the same -- you get exactly what the developer had. You also get no shared code pages -- even if you're using exactly the same library as someone else -- and bloated memory and disk usage since you have your own private copy of everything. Disk may be "cheap," but it's still surprisingly easy to fill up a 16GB eMMC device.

Comment: I Don't Get It (Score 5, Insightful) 149

by ewhac (#48560879) Attached to: Ubuntu Gets Container-Friendly "Snappy" Core
Am I getting hopelessly old and unable to appreciate new things, or is this not anywhere near as whoop-de-doo as they're making out?

"You can update transactionally!!" Great. What does that mean? Is it like git add newapp; git commit -a? If so, how do I back out a program I installed three installations ago?

Transactional updates have lots of useful properties: if they are done well, you can know EXACTLY what's running on a particular system, [ ... ]

dpkg -l

You can roll updates back, [ ... ]

dpkg -i <previous_version>

...lets you choose exactly the capabilities you want for yourself, rather than having someone else force you to use a particular tool.

#include <cheap_shots/systemd.h>

Because there is a single repository of frameworks and packages, and each of them has a digital fingerprint that cannot be faked, two people on opposite ends of the world can compare their systems and know that they are running exactly the same versions of the system and apps.

debsums

Developers of snappy apps get much more freedom to bundle the exact versions of libraries that they want to use with their apps.

...Did this guy just say he brought DLL Hell to Linux? Help me to understand how he didn't just say that.

I bet the average system on the cloud ends up with about three packages installed, total! Try this sort of output:

$ snappy info
release: ubuntu-core/devel
frameworks: docker, panamax
apps: owncloud

That's much easier to manage and reason about at scale.

No, it isn't!! What the hell is OwnCloud pulling in? What's it using as an HTTP server? As an SSL/TLS stack? Is it the one with the Heartbleed bug, the POODLE bug, or some new bug kluged in by the app vendor to add some pet feature that was rejected from upstream because it was plainly stupid?

Honestly, I'm really not getting this. It just sounds like they created a pile of tools that lets "cloud" administrators be supremely lazy. What am I missing here?

+ - Comcast Forgets To Delete Revealing Note From Blog Post

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Earlier today, Comcast published a blog post to criticize the newly announced coalition opposing its merger with Time Warner Cable and to cheer about the FCC’s decision to restart the “shot clock” on that deal. But someone at Kabletown is probably getting a stern talking-to right now, after an accidental nugget of honesty made its way into that post. Comcast posted to their corporate blog today about the merger review process, reminding everyone why they think it will be so awesome and pointing to the pro-merger comments that have come in to the FCC. But they also left something else in. Near the end, the blog post reads, “Comcast and Time Warner Cable do not currently compete for customers anywhere in America. That means that if the proposed transaction goes through, consumers will not lose a choice of cable companies. Consumers will not lose a choice of broadband providers. And not a single market will see a reduction in competition. Those are simply the facts.” The first version of the blog post, which was also sent out in an e-mail blast, then continues: “We are still working with a vendor to analyze the FCC spreadsheet but in case it shows that there are any consumers in census blocks that may lose a broadband choice, want to make sure these sentences are more nuanced.” After that strange little note, the blog post carries on in praise of competition, saying, “There is a reason we want to provide our customers with better service, faster speeds, and a diverse choice of programming: we don’t want to lose them.”"

Comment: Well, Now I Have to Read The Thing... (Score 1) 323

by ewhac (#48501747) Attached to: DOOM 3DO Source Released On Github

I worked for NTG/3DO for just under five years, so I know (knew) the machine inside and out. It will be interesting to go through this code and see what kind of tradeoffs were made.

Some comments on the README:

My friends at 3DO were begging for DOOM to be on their platform and with christmas 1995 coming soon (I took this job in August of 1995, with a mid October golden master date), I literally lived in my office, only taking breaks to take a nap and got this port completed.

*snerk* I could have told you at the time that a ten-week dev cycle was crazy talk.

Shortcuts made...

3DO's operating system was designed around running an app and purging, there was numerous bugs caused by memory leaks. So when I wanted to load the Logicware and id software logos on startup, the 3DO leaked the memory so to solve that, I created two apps, one to draw the 3do logo and the other to show the logicware logo. After they executed, they were purged from memory and the main game could run without loss of memory.

An interesting and valid approach (3DO's OS had full memory tracking). I'd be interested to know which of the 3DO libs was leaking memory on you.

The verticle walls were drawn with strips using the cell engine. However, the cell engine can't handle 3D perspective so the floors and ceilings were drawn with software rendering. I simply ran out of time to translate the code to use the cell engine because the implementation I had caused texture tearing.

Were the floor/ceiling textures not power-of-two dimensions on each side? As I recall, you only got texture cracking when the dimensions were not power-of-two.

You could have decomposed the floor/ceiling textures into strips as well, but ultimately the lack of perspective correction meant you were going to have to do some heavy lifting somewhere.

I had to write my own string.h ANSI C library because the one 3DO supplied with their compiler had bugs! string.h??? How can you screw that up!?!?! They did! I spent a day writing all of the functions I needed in ARM 6 assembly.

Ah, yes, the Norcroft compiler (or, as I always called it, Norcruft). It was a piece of shit. It was also the only thing available that would run on the Mac. It was never anything but a C compiler, but kept throwing unblockable warnings about constructs that C++ would have problems with (such as implicit cast from void*). There was no MacOS port of GCC, and there were no usable ARM backends for GCC available at the time, anyway. (Bear in mind, this was before the Web existed in any familiar form, and you had to go trawling through USENET for clues -- not even AltaVista existed yet).

I hope that everyone who looks at this code, learns something from it, and I'd be happy to answer questions about the hell I went through to make this game. I only wished I had more time to actually polish this back in 1995 so instead of being the worst port of DOOM, it would have been the best one.

I'm sure many memories will come flooding back.

Money can't buy happiness, but it can make you awfully comfortable while you're being miserable. -- C.B. Luce

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