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Comment: Re:You can probably thank Microsoft for this... (Score 2) 169

by MightyYar (#46780787) Attached to: Apache OpenOffice Reaches 100 Million Downloads. Now What?

I really detest Sharepoint. It's the flavor of the moment at work. It's slow and saves from MS Office applications sometimes fail silently. It pretends to be a suitable replacement for shared network drives, but it doesn't work for that.

I use it rather than the old Wiki (TWiki, no gem itself) just to be a good sport, but it really sucks. It really exposes how poorly integrated MS's own internal teams must me - it is such an obvious bolt-on.

Comment: Re:What now? 1 billion! (Score 3, Insightful) 169

by MightyYar (#46780271) Attached to: Apache OpenOffice Reaches 100 Million Downloads. Now What?

Excel is fantastic for exploring small sets of data... "quick and dirty" stuff. When you want rigorous statistics or a more formal analysis of data, R and friends are far superior. And anything even remotely repetitive should be done in something with a better scripting language. But I'd hate to lose Excel just as much as I'd hate to be forced to use MATLAB or Python to plot results from some small screening experiment.

And of course, we are completely deviating from Excel's forte as a financial tool, where it is much stronger.

Sometimes I'll even use it to clean up data for insertion into a database or some other such task. It has some nice built-in "Filter" functions.

Comment: Re:RAID? (Score 2) 200

by MightyYar (#46779021) Attached to: SSD-HDD Price Gap Won't Go Away Anytime Soon

> I was recently perusing the /dev directory on a next
> when I came upon the entry /dev/drum. This seemed a bit odd, I thought
> that drum memory went out of fashion long, long ago. The man pages
> didn't have anything to say about drum. Does any have any insight
> on this odd device entry?

This actually has nothing to do with drum memory. It's a part of the
UUCP system.

Long, long ago, even before version 6, somebody wanted to implement a
program to copy files between two machines running Unix. At the time
there were no modems becuase there weren't even any telephones. A
Bell Labs researcher who had just visited Africa seized upon the idea
of communicating by beating on drums, as the native Africans did. He
added a drum interface to his PDP-11 and the device driver was called,
of course, /dev/drum. Uucp would call a lower level program called
`bang' to activate this device driver. Messages could also be sent
manually by typing `bang drum' at your shell prompt. People soon
devised shell scripts that would take a mail message, convert it
appropriately, and call bang to send it. Soon they were sending
multi-hop messages though several sites this way, which is how the
`bang path' got its name.

With the advancements in communications technology (semaphores in
particular), /dev/drum was removed from UNIX around version 6 or 7, I
believe. The NeXT developers reinstated it on the NeXT because they
felt that a true multimedia machine should have as many options as
possible.

I hope this explanation helped.

cjs

curt@cynic.UUCP | "The unconscious self is the real genius.
curt@cynic.wimsey.bc.ca | Your breathing goes wrong the minute your
{uunet|ubc-cs}!van-bc!cynic!curt | conscious self meddles with it." --GBS

Comment: Re:Not sure how standing up would solve anything.. (Score 3, Interesting) 203

by MightyYar (#46778165) Attached to: Switching From Sitting To Standing At Your Desk

Yeah, standing at the register all day was rough on my body at 16... I can't imagine how my [ahem] slightly older frame would deal with it. Back then I was a "stock boy" and was much more comfortable doing the manual labor than the standing-in-one-place routine of register duty.

Comment: Re:Ukraine's borders were changed by use of force (Score 1) 282

by MightyYar (#46765845) Attached to: Is Crimea In Russia? Internet Companies Have Different Answers

"Live free or die"

It's amazing to me that people still act as if it is OK to treat the slaves so gently, like they were children. They, the Indians, and the poor white farmers were the only ones who actually knew how to live off of the land.

And once again, the Southern economy ended up collapsing anyway as a result of the war. At the time the South left the union, the thought of a sudden freeing of the slaves was unthinkable even to the vast majority of Northerners.

Comment: Re:Ukraine's borders were changed by use of force (Score 1) 282

by MightyYar (#46762703) Attached to: Is Crimea In Russia? Internet Companies Have Different Answers

You don't just ban it, you migrate away from it while providing solutions to the massive hole left in the labour sector.

No, you ban it. The people that then lose their ill-gotten plantations can go pick cotton. They can consider themselves lucky that they aren't punished more directly.

The north had just spent a whole lot of money on other conflicts, and needed the resources.

The north even had slavery at an earlier point in history. Plenty of blame for slavery all around.

But the Civil War still boils down to slavery.

Comment: Re:Ukraine's borders were changed by use of force (Score 1) 282

by MightyYar (#46762445) Attached to: Is Crimea In Russia? Internet Companies Have Different Answers

screw over the south economically

By "taking away their property"? Please...

Provide an economical way for the cotton fields to be harvested

There was no moral duty to prop up a fundamentally corrupt way of exploiting people.

While there is officially no slavery

Unless you are talking about the sex trade, there is nothing even close to approaching what was happening in the US South in the 1850s.

Comment: Re:Ukraine's borders were changed by use of force (Score 1) 282

by MightyYar (#46762137) Attached to: Is Crimea In Russia? Internet Companies Have Different Answers

Slavery may not have been the direct reason cited for Southern succession, but it was most definitely the cause. Remove slavery and you have no motivation for any of the other stuff. Slavery was a major political football at the time, forcing even the admission of new states to be forced around the issue. Succession only became a real possibility once it became clear that free states would dominate the slave states politically. The South certainly had other grievances, but even collectively they don't add up to succession.

Comment: Re:Ukraine's borders were changed by use of force (Score 1) 282

by MightyYar (#46756175) Attached to: Is Crimea In Russia? Internet Companies Have Different Answers

People are exactly the same as they were 150 years ago. I imagine the exact same thing would happen: Texas would declare itself independent. There would be a thorny issue of a bunch of federal property still in Texas. For a short time, there would be an uneasy peace as the Texans tolerated US forces within their borders. Eventually, someone would do something aggressive and you would have war.

Money is the root of all wealth.

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