Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
For the out-of-band Slashdot experience (mostly headlines), follow us on Twitter, or Facebook. ×

Comment: On the other hand... (Score 1) 289 289

it would be very nice if Windows stopped insisting that its driver for "Unknown Device" is up to date, at newest version and doesn't need to be replaced by another driver supplied by the manufacturer. Once new hardware in Windows is recognized as "Unknown Device" it's about impossible to convince Windows to change it to something more reasonable. Remove the hardware, wipe all traces of its past existence from system, install the correct drivers and only then install the hardware.

Seriously, Microsoft, the first this issue appeared was Windows 95. And it still persists!

Comment: Forwarding... (Score 3, Funny) 776 776

One thing she could have done - turn call forwarding to a private phone on, so that the 24/7 condition is met, and then... sky's the limit.

Get a friendly taxi driver to take the phone for the night.
Put it on an RC plane and take it for a trip over the city center.
Put it in a box and attach with a magnet to your boss' car.
Borrow it for a friend who does car races (preferably illegal) to take it for a 200MPH ride.
Root the phone, get a GPS spoofing app and "send it to Antarctica".

Or just leave it in a desk drawer at work...

Comment: Re:Mother of all assumptions (Score 1) 182 182

There's always an option of energy hoarding. I saw that sci-fi once; the whole universe is long dead but the civilization thrives on a single isle of enormous hoard of energy picked before that. Yes, that means the universe isn't -entirely- dead, but its final thermal death is prolonged far past its natural date through artificial means buying the civilization extra time to either migrate to a different universe or trigger a new big bang.

Plus it's not entirely sure if space expansion can't be harnessed as an energy source; that effect seems to increase potential energy between distant objects at no cost at all - a mysterious source of negative entropy.

Comment: Re:Lawsuit incoming? (Score 1) 90 90

Not to mention any more considerable violation results in a lawsuit against the violator, and in that case eBay must provide whatever help available in identifying and locating the violator.

Here, we're playing whack-a-mole, with Google pretending to help while in reality they protect the violators.

Comment: Re:if I am dead (Score 1) 182 182

That's a very selfish approach.

What about giving of yourself freely to the world? Contributing - and making sure your contributions stay around, available to these, who need them?

Maybe they aren't significant enough for someone to establish some estate that would perpetuate publishing them; that doesn't mean they are useless - and sure once I'm dead I won't care what happens to them and the rest of the world, but currently I am alive and I do care.

Comment: Re:How powered off is "powered off"? (Score 1) 184 184

You're way optimistic with that "forever". Flash memory is based on electromagnetic charge which has the nasty property of leaking.

I tried some MicroSD cards that's been sitting in my drawer for past 4 years. All needed to be reformatted. SSDs may retain data longer, but it's by no means 'eternal'.

Comment: Re:I call BS (Score 2) 184 184

Cherry-picked for "a week" yes, but still disturbing. It's not an issue for datacenters, but for offices.

Imagine an office PC set next to the radiator - oh, the employees are free to set up their desks as they like, and they really don't care about stuff like that. Given employee going for a holiday break for a month, taking the family for a skiing trip. The PC experiencing 50C on regular basis. That's quite enough to cause the data loss.

Yes, in a responsible company there will be backups - or the data will be held on network drives. Visit your average office and see if they use these responsible practices; roughly half don't. Yes, once that occurs any admin who isn't a total idiot will spot the reason for the problem and recommend moving the PC away from the radiator. Still, the problem is not an impossible one - just needing a bad set of circumstances; iterate over enough PCs and offices and it *will* happen.

Comment: Why not downscale it? (Score 1) 203 203

Reduce the number of flights to what can be comfortably served by existing infrastructure. Reduce maximum planes size. Make it a domestic terminal for flights to several major airports where large, intercontinental flights depart.

As I understand all the problems originate from too high traffic at various points and all of them would need to be expanded. So what if you instead reduced the traffic to the narrowest choke point size?

Do build a large airport away from the city. If someone goes on a 14 hour flight, an extra hour of commute won't change much, especially if it means comfortable and organized boarding experience. OTOH it makes a difference if you want to visit your aunt seven hours of driving away, if you can get there through one hour of commute, half-hour of boarding and an hour of flight.

Closing down all that existing infrastructure would be a huge waste of money. Smaller planes mean safer landing. Less traffic means safety in air. Fewer passengers mean the terminals, parking lots and public communication will be able to handle the numbers comfortably, without need for upgrades.

Sure the solution shares some disadvantages of leaving the airport running at current capacity, and some disadvantages of shutting it down and building a new one - but it seems to me it resolves the worst of disadvantages of both.

Comment: Re:Please explain (Score 1) 158 158

I tend to hoard my old electronics, for scavenging them for parts when I need them.
So, a dedicated GPS-Bluetooth ding that was horrible at both; I tried to use it with a netbook for geocaching, it didn't work out. A terrible idea, powered over USB but needing Bluetooth for communication and with enough quirks to make it useless.
my two old Windows Mobile phones, same cheap Medion knock-offs, after charger of one broke I found the other costing maybe 30% more than a new charger so I bought it, same model. Funny thing, external GPS powered from car charger socket. They worked fine for a time, but then the support for that version of Windows Mobile became so scarce I couldn't get any up-to-date maps, and MiniSD became a dead standard.
My first Android phone, still kept as a backup, original G1. A very nice phone, I miss the trackball. I still use it if I'm unable to use my new phone for some reason.
My current Android phone.
If I buy a new phone it will likely have GPS in it too. I know if I bought one generation newer SLC camera, it would come with GPS as well. The tablet I have doesn't have GPS but it's crap; if I wanted a better one I'd have GPS, simply because every better tablet has one.

If you stay up-to-date with the tech - buying only phones and tablets and not discarding old ones - you'll have 6-8 GPS devices easily.

OS/2 must die!