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Comment: Similar problem here (Score 1) 100

by Pinkfud (#49257677) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Mouse/Pointer For a Person With Poor Motor Control
I'm getting into the same boat because of progressing MS. I bought a fairly inexpensive gaming mouse by Etekcity. It's a bit bigger than average without being a hand-stretching monster, and it has a 3-position DPI selector that lets me adjust to my ability at any given moment. If I'm shakier, I can slow down the mouse response. Plus it has a pair of programmable side buttons which I have set for volume up/down. All this is not for gaming in my case, it's to help me use the mouse with a fair degree of comfort. Sometimes a product made for one purpose can do wonders for a completely different problem.

Comment: Re:Bad Sectors! (Score 2, Informative) 252

by Pinkfud (#48729613) Attached to: US CTO Tries To Wean the White House Off Floppy Disks
Yep. I had a huge box of them from the 90s and one day I decided to copy anything useful from them while I still had a computer with a floppy drive. Total waste of time - not a single one was readable. Oddly enough, more than half showed as not even being present at all. No disc in drive. That's a pretty bad failure!

Comment: Re:A fool and their money (Score 4, Interesting) 266

Okay, I'm a geologist. It happens that I live in an intermontane basin filled with alluvium, and I know the water table is about 30 feet down at my location. If I were so inclined, I could take a couple of wires or a willow stick, walk around a bit for show, then "find" a place. I'd tell you to dig 30 feet and you'll find water - and I'd be right. The knowledge this takes is not that hard to acquire, especially if you want to work in a specific region. I suspect many of the "professional" water dowsers are simply doing that and making a buck from credulous buyers. That said, I have seen people do some freaky things with dowsing rods. As a scientist I have to doubt any mystical source, but I admit having had a few WTF moments courtesy of one old fellow I used to know. He would find ore veins - where I knew they actually were, and he couldn't have because I hadn't shared my survey findings. But guess what? Ore veins do affect both the magnetic and gravitational fields. I don't completely discount an ability by some people to detect that - after all, some birds apparently do.

Comment: Re:2-year CFLs (Score 1) 278

by Pinkfud (#47409711) Attached to: My most recent energy-saving bulbs last ...
Yep, I've yet to have one last a year. I've gone through 20 or so in the last 3 years. It doesn't seem to matter whether I buy the cheap ones or the most expensive. Within a month or two they go yellowish, then quit soon after. I've also had 3 explode, throwing glass shards all over the room. That isn't much fun. Oh, I guess there IS one that has lasted. That one never gets turned off, and while it's very yellow, it's still working. Maybe running them 24/7 is the answer, but then there isn't as much power savings. Looked at LEDs in the store, but none of them has light that's even close to satisfactory. The choice seems to be blue or yellow, and I hate both.

Comment: Re:1983 was not the "punched card era" (Score 1) 230

by Pinkfud (#46882285) Attached to: One-a-Day-Compiles: Good Enough For Government Work In 1983
We still used them in 83 where I was. We had to code by hand on coding forms, then we had to make our own punch cards on IBM Model 29s. The target system, an IBM 360, had a tempermental card reader that would sometimes spew the cards all over the place. Gathering them up and resorting them was a real treat. But we did get to see if it compiled on the spot. Whether it gave the desired output, well that was another matter.

Comment: Re:I don't think he means that literally/absolutel (Score 1) 581

by Pinkfud (#46726099) Attached to: Michael Bloomberg: You Can't Teach a Coal Miner To Code
I spent a decade as a coal miner in my youth. I even earned a license as a blasting supervisor. And I can code. I don't code for a living, but yeah, I can code. I find the implication that coal miners are somehow too dumb to learn anything else mildly offensive. Many coal miners are the product of a family that has done the same work for generations, and just kind of inherited the job. Same with farmers. But that doesn't mean they are incapable of doing anything else.

The two most beautiful words in the English language are "Cheque Enclosed." -- Dorothy Parker

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