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Comment: Re:Dual degrees (Score 1) 391

by Quirkz (#47919609) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Any Place For Liberal Arts Degrees In Tech?

I majored in physics, but at a very liberal-arts-focused school. So, I guess I've got both. I think it's served me well in the field: I've built web sites, been in tech support, run my own indie MMO, done a lot of random programming, and I'm currently a server admin.

Believe it or not, the most helpful classes may have been art history. Journalism and philosophy didn't hurt, especially Symbolic Logic, which was a philosophy class.

Comment: Re:Quite accurately? (Score 1) 170

by Quirkz (#47880927) Attached to: Universal Big Bang Lithium Deficit Confirmed

For explaining the lithium's disappearance, maybe, but we do need something to explain the relative proportions.

My default assumption was as a light element Li would be one of the top numbers. If, say (and these numbers are way off), you were expecting the universe to be 50% hydrogen, 25% helium, 12% lithium, 13% other, and you only had 4% lithium, then that missing 8% would have to be reflected somewhere, and you'd be seeing 54% hydrogen in the universe, for instance.

Except as I look it up, lithium is very rare to begin with, so maybe two thirds of a very small number isn't enough to throw off the calculations for the other elements. In reality it's 74% hydrogen, 24% helium, and less than 2% for everything else. Li is some exceptionally tiny fraction of a percent, so even if it is off, that's not going to shift the relative percentages of other elements enough to be noticeable, I don't think.

Comment: Re:Quite accurately? (Score 1) 170

by Quirkz (#47880123) Attached to: Universal Big Bang Lithium Deficit Confirmed

There are two things that confuse me with this news.

1. With a BA in physics (mid-90's), I was taught about the Big Bang and elements calculation multiple times. In every single instance I was shown the calculated and observed percentages, and they were always given as a good match, as part of the proof. I'm really confused that now it's been known for decades that they *don't* match. Were my books lying to me? Was this observation adjusted the year I graduated college, and I just missed the controversy?

2. I'm also really curious to hear which elements have a *higher* concentration, to make up for the missing lithium. If we were just short a bunch of lithium, all of the other elements would be higher, percentage wise, and thus all of them would be off. Since the others are spot-on, I've got to think there's at least one element out there that's disproportionately high to balance it out.

Comment: Re: So a company (Score 1) 81

by Quirkz (#47856263) Attached to: Microsoft Takes Down Slideshow-Building Tool After Getty Images Lawsuit

Oh, I wasn't even actively trying to sell. I just had some art on my web site that I'd done for fun and wanted to show off. I only got a small handful of contacts, but all of them were looking for free. One of them was even a "conference," which seemed like it ought to have *some* funds. Though it was also South Korea in the early 2000's, so I'm not sure what things were like then.

I appreciate your taking the time to make the suggestion, though.

Comment: Re: So a company (Score 2) 81

by Quirkz (#47855507) Attached to: Microsoft Takes Down Slideshow-Building Tool After Getty Images Lawsuit

Maybe I'm lucky, and I find a site with contact information. I call up the photographer, and he's willing to negotiate. There's a back-and-forth exchange where I offer some amount of money, and he wants a hundred times that. Forget it.

Heh, I wish just once someone who contacted me about using my images had any money at all. The only requests I've ever gotten were from people looking for entirely free use. I would have gladly taken $20 just to be able to say I'd once sold something.

Comment: Re:How much? (Score 1) 149

by Quirkz (#47817929) Attached to: Dell's New Alienware Case Goes to Extremes To Prevent Overheating

And ad blocking. Don't even get me started. So many ad blockers are so proud of what they do, like it's some badge of honor to block. If everyone blocked ads, many quality web sites would likely cease to exist, including Slashdot.

I'm not "proud" of adblocking any more than I'm proud of locking my door at night. It's just basic personal security. It's a shame that my security needs conflict with the site's business model. But frankly, I'm not going to click on any ads anyway. I've clicked on maybe two in the past decade, and both were by accident. Mostly I'm not interested. Even if I *am* interested, I'm going go to the source web site directly, because I can't trust some random ad to be genuine.

Comment: Re:many sites still dumb (Score 1) 107

by Quirkz (#47817747) Attached to: Hackers Behind Biggest-Ever Password Theft Begin Attacks

One version of PHPBB had a bug where it trimmed the special characters (or at least the @) from a password when you *created* it, but not later on when you tried logging in. I had to reinstall a couple of times before I somehow figured out what was going on. Not sure if this bug still exists, as it was many years ago.

Comment: Re:Windows XP (Score 1) 635

by Quirkz (#47817597) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Old Technology Can't You Give Up?

I still miss the speed with which Mac OS 9 opened windows. (I don't still use it, mind you, I just miss it.) When they came out with OS X there was a tremendous, noticeable drag on the window-opening animation/process. I think they did slowly improve things over subsequent versions and with improving hardware, but I'm pretty sure I could still drill down through 8 folders faster on OS 9 using 90's-era hardware than I could through the same folders on a modern Mac.

I know, I'm probably not supposed to keep things in folders and drill down like that anymore, but instead throw it all in one big pot and search or something, but that's not how I learned to think about my computer files, and I still haven't really adjusted to it.

If you have to ask how much it is, you can't afford it.