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Comment: Re:Yes, I agree (Score 1) 194

by gstoddart (#49172577) Attached to: Why We Should Stop Hiding File-Name Extensions

Why in Sam Hill would a user give a shit about hidden stuff?

Because it has been demonstrated for a long time that it can be dangerous to hide stuff.

So if I set something to be "malware.jpg.exe", Microsoft will present that as "malware.exe".

The act of hiding this stuff to try to make it "user friendly" leads the users to make stupid decisions.

Just like autorun, which says "I'm going to run any executable on any media which is connected to this machine".

You don't know bullshit from wild honey about how to do their job.

I don't give a flying fuck about how they do their job. But I don't want to spend hours undoing moronic marketing decisions so that I can do my job on my computer.

Comment: Re: Yes, I agree (Score 2) 194

by gstoddart (#49172143) Attached to: Why We Should Stop Hiding File-Name Extensions

Hell hath no fury like a nerd set in his ways.

There's set in my ways, and then there's confronted with a modern piece of shit that some marketing wanker thinks is helpful.

And, I'm sorry to say it, but almost all of the crap I had to figure out how to remove was garbage, intended to give a tablet like interface, using a UI which is mostly about eye candy.

It serves no purpose, and provides no value to me.

It's crap. But it's pretty.

My problem with Microsoft is they seem to have forgotten that many of us still actually use computers to do our fucking work.

Metro was a steaming pile of crap which wasn't useful for that.

The OS itself seems good. The user interface has been designed by morons.

Comment: Re:Yes, I agree (Score 4, Informative) 194

by gstoddart (#49171889) Attached to: Why We Should Stop Hiding File-Name Extensions

I just went through setting up a new Windows 8.1 machine.

And the sheer quantity of places where Microsoft has more or less gone out of their way to hide basic stuff about your computer, and make it as difficult to find as possible -- well, that is kind of mind boggling (and very frustrating).

And when they do make it available to you, they couch it in a "well, everything hereafter is your fault".

Essentially, in my opinion, Microsoft has tried to dumb down the system so far that when you try to do anything it is almost useless, and if you need to see more information it just throws up its hands and says "fuck it, not my problem".

So, maybe instead of trying to write a crappy, useless system for the users who will be scared to know they're looking at a text file or an exe ... Microsoft should try to write something which isn't crap, isn't still predicated on using that crap autorun to ensure every possible source of malware is ran without being prompted, and from the get go tells users "this is a computer, we're not hiding this from you".

It boggles my mind even at work on a Windows server, when my account is an admin and I'm doing admin tasks how Microsoft goes out of their way to hide the actual functionality. And when they don't their "helpful" error messages are garbage ... like "something bad happened, contact your administrator". Tell you what, I'm the fucking administrator, why don't you tell me an actual error message instead of assuming I'm a child?

It seems like the more Microsoft tries to dumb things down for their users, the worse they actually make their software. Because it actively tries to be sure you can't see what you know, and simply can't (or won't) tell you what happened when it should.

Microsoft is way too focused on pointless eye candy (like the Metro interface on my desktop I had to remove), and dumbing down the user experience ... and seems to utterly fail to make it possible for someone who actually has some idea of what they're doing to find what they need.

The more "helpful" they try to be, the less helpful and usable they actually are.

Comment: Re:Jail time (Score 5, Insightful) 268

Well, if anybody else in government did this, they'd get fired, lose their pension, and possibly face criminal charges.

When the people at the highest levels of power decide that the law doesn't apply to them, nothing at all happens.

So, on behalf of the rest of the world ... when the political leaders ignore the law and face no consequences, the rest of us want to send a big collective "fuck you".

This has nothing to do with her politics. If Bush or Cheney had done this, we'd want them prosecuted as well.

Laws which are selectively applied are crap. Assholes in power who believe the law doesn't apply to them need to be punished.

These laws exist so there is a public record of activities, not some place where you can sidestep that and conduct business elsewhere away from oversight.

Comment: Re:Hm (Score 3, Insightful) 157

by gstoddart (#49168299) Attached to: Marissa Mayer On Turning Around Yahoo

No, the answer seems to be that CEOs are incompetent, talk corporations into giving them huge pay packets (which is done with the help of other CEOs), and generally don't have a clue of what they should be doing.

The compensation of a CEO is not tied to performance, so they can be as idiotic as possible, ruin the company, and still have their huge payout.

Basically, CEOs have hoodwinked the world into believing they're extra special people with valuable skillsets, even when they don't.

Essentially being a CEO is a great scam, funded by the shareholders and the employees. Being a CEO has to be the easiest fucking job in the world .. because no matter the shit job you do you still make a huge sum of money, and people subsequently are willing to hire you in other companies on the assumption that, having been incompetent to be a CEO already, you're qualified for the job.

In my experience and observation, your average CEO is either a failed business person, or an engineer who got lucky in another company and now has an MBA ... they're just chimps who get paid vast sums of money if they win or lose.

And, of course, since the people who hire and fire CEOs are just as incompetent, and in on the scam, they will never decide to tie compensation to any meaningful level of results.

Cynically, I believe this is just a massive scam being perpetuated to make a bunch of assholes even richer, while not giving a crap what happens to the company or the stock price.

Me, I'd be an incompetent CEO for half the price ... and I'd probably do no better or worse, and then I'd get my severance package and retire.

A fucking drunk chimp could do as good of a job as most corporate CEOs. This is just another example.

Comment: Re:Viewing Launches (Score 1) 22

by Bruce Perens (#49166815) Attached to: SpaceX Falcon 9 Launches Dual Satellite Mission

With luck, they'll start incorporating our radio transceivers. I hear that SpaceX flies with several USRPs now, so that's not completely unrealistic. That might be as close as I can get. Anyone who can get me a base invitation, though, would be greatly appreciated and I'd be happy to do some entertaining speeches while there. I need a base invite for Vandenberg, too. I got in to the official viewing site for the first try of the last launch (and that scrubbed too), but this next one is on Pad 6.

Comment: Viewing Launches (Score 3, Interesting) 22

by Bruce Perens (#49164783) Attached to: SpaceX Falcon 9 Launches Dual Satellite Mission

I was in Florida to speak at Orlando Hamcation and went to see the DISCOVR launch at Kennedy Space Center. I paid $50 to be at LC-39 for the launch, an observation tower made from a disused gantry on the Nasa Causeway between the pads and the Vehicle Assembly Building. A crawler was parked next door! A hot sandwich buffet, chips, and sodas were served. It was cold and windy! I watched for a few hours and unfortunately the launch scrubbed due to high stratospheric winds.

The next day, Delaware North Corporation, which operates tourism at KSC, decided not to open LC-39 or the Saturn 5 center for the launch. This was the third launch attempt and I guess they decided most people had left. I was annoyed.

The closest beach was going to be closed in the evening, it's a sensitive ecological area. I ended up seeing the launch from Jetty Park. This turned out not to be such a great location, the tower wasn't visible at all and the first 10 seconds of the rocket in flight were obscured before we saw it over a hill.

What's a better viewing location?

Comment: Re:Just (Score 1) 159

by gstoddart (#49151933) Attached to: Can the Guitar Games Market Be Resurrected?

But that's just where the usefulness ends. Sure, you now appreciate rock music, but can you play it in real life on real instruments?

Umm, yeah, and how many video game skills do you apply to daily life?

Are you an awesome assassin? A race car driver? A pilot? A marine? Are you actually Batman?

It's a frickin game. It is play. Nobody gives a crap in this context about playing an actual instrument. It's frickin air guitar. It's intended to be fun.

Millions of kids bought Guitar Hero and Rock Band to realize their dreams of actually becoming ROCK MUSICIANS.

Horseshit. Millions of kids bought GTA and Saints Row to realize their dreams of become thugs, mac daddies, and pimps.

Do you think any of them actually expect to have that happen? (Well, I guess in some cases the just might.)

Sadly, all the games do is to train you to press colored buttons in sequence with colored lights. Those skills are not transferable to real instruments, and in fact, won't even get you an audition.

Dude, in the 80s there used to be this game called Simon. It had four colored lights to press. You can still buy it.

This is shared fun, with "press colored buttons in sequence with colored lights" but with music and animations. It's not sophisticated or real. It's not for hardcore gamers.

Most 'skills' you practice in video games will never translate into real world skills or get you an interview. So why is this any different?

You don't need to like it or understand it, but it's not completely without entertainment value to some people ... even if they don't actually become Rock Bands. Which, none of them actually expect to.

No more than any other game with a "make pretend" aspect to it.


Comment: Re:Just (Score 1) 159

by gstoddart (#49149655) Attached to: Can the Guitar Games Market Be Resurrected?

LOL ... I do now. Prior to rock band, absolutely not. Now based on drum rate I can tell old v new Metallica -- or at least know it's either Metallica or Anthrax (based on what else is in my collection that is).

And, obviously, I do not think real drumming is easy, not by a bloody long shot ... but she's hella good at it in the game. Way way better than I ever got. She was rocking it on expert and I was in awe.

But prior to that, it was all a blur of screeching noise that I couldn't stand.

Now? Metallica and a bunch of hard core punk are likely to be on my iPod.

As I said, my wife is eternally grateful for the game, as my musical horizons have blown past what they had been.

Comment: Re:Just (Score 4, Interesting) 159

by gstoddart (#49149351) Attached to: Can the Guitar Games Market Be Resurrected?

You know, my wife will be eternally grateful for Rock Band, et al.

I led a very, er ... musically sheltered life prior to Rockband and Guitar Hero. Wasn't a fan of most forms of rock, couldn't stand metal or punk. Like, at all.

The Rockbank type games taught me a LOT about the melody, structure, and musicality of them; sort of acted as a crash course in understanding why they didn't suck.

Since then I've bought well over a hundred punk albums (literally) and other stuff I previously didn't like since playing the game.

Say what you will about these games ... but in my direct experience, nothing teaches the structure and musicality of a broad range of music as well as these things.

For me and my wife? We'd buy this again in a heartbeat ... because it's a fun game to play in parties, and a friend's wife makes drumming on expert look easy.

So when I'm rocking out to Rise Against in the car, my wife is laughing and saying "Thank god for Rockband". Because without those games, I most certainly wouldn't have been.

Comment: Re:Illogical (Score 4, Funny) 407

by gstoddart (#49148409) Attached to: Leonard Nimoy Dies At 83

Honestly, yes, he died of smoking.

But he was 83. What is the median age of death?

It's like the great lines from George Burns:

"Is it true that you smoke eight to ten cigars a day?"
"That's true."
"Is it true that you drink five martinis a day?"
"That's true."
"Is it true that you still surround yourself with beautiful young women?"
"That's true."
"What does your doctor say about all of this?"
"My doctor is dead."

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