Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re: Different markets... (Score 1) 277

by Dixie_Flatline (#48947735) Attached to: How, and Why, Apple Overtook Microsoft

God, this is such obnoxious bullshit.

I buy Apple products because they work better than other products I could be paying for. I did a CS degree. I've been making console video games for almost fifteen years. I've run my own mail server, installed Slackware and free BSD on cobbled together beige boxes.

I buy macs because I was sick of coming home from work and doing more work. I wanted to sit in front of my computer and have it do things, not endlessly tinker with it. I've gotten over the need to configure every last widget. It's just not anything I'm interested in anymore. Don't tell me I'm doing it because I'm thinking of my computer or phone as 'jewellery'. I'm the same way with my bicycles. I want my time with my bike to be about riding, not wrenching.

And having run lots of things over the years, the system that has the least work for the most utility has remained Apple for me. Maybe you've got different needs. I have friends that literally can't do the thing they need on an iPhone, so they buy a different phone.

Is there status hunting in the phone market? Definitely. Is it the main driver of people to iPhones? I don't think so. Do you have counter evidence? If you do, put up or shut up. Stop being so patronising.

Comment: Which he needn't do (Score 1) 155

If you choose not to use the tools available, well don't expect anyone to have sympathy for you or marvel at how hard you had it. You've only yourself to blame. When I wish to mount something in my house I get out a laser level, cordless electric drill with titanium bits, and so on. As such things get put up easily, quickly, and dead level. You could do the same with a rock and sharpened metal pieces, but don't expect me to be impressed with how long it took you or the problems with the results. You could use modern tools, if you chose.

Comment: Re:Given a choice ... (Score 1) 172

by rwa2 (#48944477) Attached to: Mathematicians Uncomfortable With Ties To NSA, But Not Pulling Back

Eh, we used to live in the DC metro area and went to those parties. Government employees are government employees, and friendly people. Even the ones in the military.

Also, at least half of the people who work at the NSA are the whitehats, responsible for really boring things like system hardening guides

Frankly I'm glad they're there doing their thing, and hopefully keeping an eye on some of the blackhats they have running around on their TS/SCI projects.

Comment: Is anyone surprised? (Score 4, Insightful) 155

I think some forget, or never knew, that his first book was published 1996. This guy is not a fast writer.

Personally doesn't bother me, since I stopped reading after the third book because the quality tanked so hard. The original Game of Thrones is my all time favourite fantasy novel and I will recommend it all the time. A Clash of Kings was good, but a major step down. I enjoyed it though. A Storm of Swords wasn't very good at all.When A Feast for Crows I asked some people and the answer I universally got was "don't bother" so I didn't. It was also a bit harder to maintain the "givashit" with 5 years intervening instead of 2.

It seems like he more or less ran out of ideas and has bogged things down in to a whole bunch of characters nobody cares about. Ok, he can do as he pleases, but I'll keep my money thanks.

Comment: Re:Does It Matter? (Score 2) 264

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) 169

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) 167

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:Vast... Tracts of Land (Score 1) 203

by jfengel (#48942585) Attached to: New Study Says Governments Should Ditch Reliance On Biofuels

I'd be interested in reading the source to see what the argument is. Off the top of my head, the Irish Potato Famine strikes me as a pretty real famine. It was certainly exacerbated by political pressures, and they were growing monocultures in the first place because of the pressure for productivity. But it was a real crop failure, and they learned to reduce their dependence on a single crop.

Certainly it could have been handled better, and far fewer people would have died. But I still think the death toll would have counted as a famine, or at best a famine barely averted by aid. I'd put it in a different category from starvation caused by war or corruption. Even the Great Chinese Famine could be chalked up to politics without too much of a stretch, but there are still crop failures due to drought and disease.

Since the agricultural revolutions of the past few centuries and especially the last few decades, we're so awash in food that aid will always be stymied by people rather than lack of calories. But I'd put the tipping close closer to 40 years than 400.

Comment: Re:More ambiguous cruft (Score 1) 472

by jfengel (#48942065) Attached to: The Gap Between What The Public Thinks And What Scientists Know

The terminator gene solves the gene-spreading problem, but it introduces the problem of leaving farmers permanently at the hands of Monsanto. They are forced to buy new seeds every year.

They can, of course, opt out, but then they miss out on Monsanto's improvements. So we've got a conflict of expectations not entirely unlike Slashdot's frequent outrage about EULAs that effectively mean you don't own your own software, or even hardware.

As I understand it, most farmers buy seeds anyway, because the plants don't breed true to type. But there was particular worry about poor nations, where the farmers are closer to being completely broke, and this looked suspiciously like indentured servitude.

I'm not taking a position on the argument here, just clarifying what it's about.

Comment: Re:Anecdotal Example (Score 1) 109

by Dixie_Flatline (#48941811) Attached to: Wi-Fi Issues Continue For OS X Users Despite Updates

If they do patch it, I greatly suspect that if you bring your laptop into an Apple store, they'll do an upgrade/patch/swap for you there.

Still, this is pretty much garbage. I haven't had these problems, but my iMac and Mac Mini aren't the most cutting edge hardware. I wonder what combination of hardware and software is causing issues here.

Comment: Re:Does It Matter? (Score 5, Insightful) 264

by rwa2 (#48940767) Attached to: VirtualBox Development At a Standstill

For basic workstation stuff it's fine.

It's also pretty heavily used for development and test of server deploys. A lot of DevOps types are trying to use VirtualBox to build disposable test clusters for their applications, and has been the default and one of the best supported engines for vagrant.

Unfortunately, a lot of app footprints are starting to rely on deploying other "appliance VMs" in your VM (yo dawg), and VirtualBox is still straggling behind the others on implementing some form of nested VM capability. So it's kinda getting to a point of having a large and growing number of server apps that you won't be able to use VirtualBox to set up a local development and test environment for things that involve, say, using a Stackato PAAS, or a FEO appliance, or an Apigee API gateway appliance, etc. to pick a bunch of essential pieces from recent memory. At least not without a lot of work to host those VMs directly on VirtualBox and not looking or working at all like they would when they hit production.

Comment: Re:$45 Billion is just another tax, different form (Score 1) 88

by jandrese (#48940409) Attached to: US Wireless Spectrum Auction Raises $44.9 Billion
Have you ever tried to use WiFi in a crowded apartment building? Do you want the same experience with cellphones? It works for WiFi and Bluetooth only because their ranges are so short that you usually don't get much interference. That solution obviously won't work for cell phones. Nobody wants to have to find the nearest cell tower and drive over to it to use their phone.

Garbage In -- Gospel Out.