Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:fees (Score 3, Informative) 248

to show how much variation there is, I am also in the bay area and I have a year of 'intro deal' pricing where its less than $50 for 100meg down and 10meg up. no shit, either; I do get those speeds.

well, one caveat. I run openvpn almost 7x24 and this pisses comcast off, even though they won't ever say it. I get disconnected almost every hour on the hour. I work around it with my own form of creative network mgmt (...) and I'm annoyed by them, but its not stopping me.

note, when I don't run my vpn, I don't see the disconnects coming. strange, huh?

anyway, when the intro 12mo deal is over, I'll have to find some other service. there isn't much else to pick from! I once had clear.com (clearwire) - a semi-4g usb 'mifi' dongle that would give me acceptable connectivity without any house wiring. when I was short-term renting, that did the trick. neat little dongle, too. maybe I'll look into that again.

I just need to leave comcast (when my year is up) for 3mos, then I can reset the clock, get a new intro pkg and start again, but this time it probably will only be a 6mo special.

if you don't play these games, you get stuck for over $100/mo!

THIS is why comcast needs to be bitchslapped. and the others, too, but in my area, comcast is the only choice you get.

silicon valley - where we pretty much DID invent the internet - and we have a single vendor to pick from. sigh ;(

Comment: Re:Corporation != People (Score 1) 248

but they feel no pain, like people. no ability to show remorse or ethics or shame.

they can't be jailed and they are almost never punished in any meaningful way.

they have all the good things we, people have; but none of the bad things.

"gee, dad, when I grow up, I want to be a corporation!"

Comment: Re:Video over LAN (Score 1) 76

by TheGratefulNet (#49150471) Attached to: VLC Gets First Major Cross-Platform Release

update: why didn't I try the simple thing, first? sigh. do a full uninstall, then install the new and this does not carry over previous 'settings'. it seems that even installing the new one over my older one was not so great. had to do a full remove and then add.

but after that, all is well! amazing. none of the problems I had are now there. loading an mkv file can take a long time over ac-rated wifi (sometimes 10 secs of the screen just sitting there, no status or anything) but then the video plays and from then on, its fine.

random positioning no longer shows the blockiness or buffering problem. playing dvd files is now fine and hd files continue to be fine.

wow. so, the 'trick' I'm glad to say, is simple. full uninstall and then fresh install. I should have known, sigh.

but really glad that it was not something other than 'bad settings'.

Comment: Re:Video over LAN (Score 1) 76

by TheGratefulNet (#49149439) Attached to: VLC Gets First Major Cross-Platform Release

thanks for the idea.

but if win media player can play dvd data files perfectly, I'm thinking the video layer is fine as it is, and its vlc's buffering or queueing that seems broken.

if you FF to skip across compressed video, it will take some settle time to deblock, but on vlc it takes an absurd amount of timeto do that on mkv and mp4. and on dvd files, it never seems to play well, no matter what.

very odd that 'hard' files (such as hd) play with clocklike perfection and yet the lower res, lower bandwidth 'easy' files give such a hard time.

Comment: Re:Video over LAN (Score 1) 76

by TheGratefulNet (#49149101) Attached to: VLC Gets First Major Cross-Platform Release

lately, I'm having a lot of trouble with vlc on win7. not sure why.

when I use wired ethernet, things seem fine (source of data is my nas box). I can play hd files that were downloaded (...) and those play great, even at 1920/120hz native refresh.

BUT - if I dare play a dvd with a video_ts style standard folder, even local playback shows lots of blockiness. I can copy the files to my local ssd and it still acts that way. playing dvd should be EASIER than high def mkv or mp4, right? so what's going on?

system is i7 haswell with onboard intel video. the system is fine, it can handle any hd file I throw at it. well, ok, one problem that might be related; if I skip around on the file, it takes forever to resync and unblock the blockiness. its like the deltas (non i-frames) are staying out of sync and there's no resync ability. 10 seconds or more, later, the file fixes itself (the player, that is) and the hd video looks great again.

that blockiness never seems to go away on pure dvd filesets.

I wonder what's going on? I'm pretty sure I was able to play 'simple dvd's about a year ago, but lately its unusable. if I feed that video_ts folder to win media player (included on win7) it plays as perfectly as a hardware based dvd player would, flawless. and yet, vlc chokes badly on dvd style data.

anyone see that on the last few builds? I don't know when things broke but I'm interested in finding a player that WILL work for all formats and is stable enough to use. win media player is great for the codecs it supports but there are too many it won't read and work with, hence my use of vlc.

I don't bother with vlc on linux on my htpc since the video system is still not as good as win7 is. still too much tearing compared to the perfect video I get from 7 (I hate saying that, too, but its true).

Comment: Re:nice, now for the real fight (Score 1) 609

by TheGratefulNet (#49143589) Attached to: FCC Approves Net Neutrality Rules

the republicans are liars, plain and simple. they say they are for a free market but they only mean a free hand for big business.

you have to be able to read their 'talking points' and interpret them in a way that removes their spin.

the party of 'small government' would have no business being in your bedroom, spying on your data comms and telling you who you can marry and who you can not. they lie when they say they are for small government.

the democrats also lie. but they are not standing in the way of the free internet, its all about the republicans, this time. they seem to live in another world than the rest of us. the rest of us realize that special lock-in deals limit all of our choices and that the internet is too important to let big companies make all the rules.

Comment: intel 'yellow books' (Score 1) 103

by TheGratefulNet (#49141119) Attached to: Intel To Rebrand Atom Chips Along Lines of Core Processors


I have no idea if this is true or not. interesting read. and its plausible, given how deep corporate secrets are these days and how those in charge LOVE to have backdoors into your systems.

wish someone would confirm this. without confirmation, its just a rumor.

posting it here for the slight chance an AC might confirm this with actual first-hand info.

Comment: Re:Kinda stupid since (Score 0) 505

by TheGratefulNet (#49138909) Attached to: Machine Intelligence and Religion

in this day and age, only the foolish and brainwashed want and encourage religious views.

the rest of us understand that this bronze-age bit of illogic has no place in the modern world. we know all the religious statements about creation and the universe to be wrong. we can see the self-inconsistencies in all major religions' books. to this day, there is still no solid proof on the existence of any kind of god.

the religious right speaks out of emotion and ignorance. you can't convince them or even reach them, intellectually. its not even worth the effort. once a mind is closed, its closed off. there is just no way to reason with those who think their god is real and all others are fake. (the difference between an athiest and a christian is that the athiest believes in one less god than the christian does).

christianity, like most organized religions, keeps its motivation mostly secret. its not about gods and being 'saved', but it has always been about control and power over fellow mankind. look at the power structures and you'll understand that this is the real reason for all religions. its not about giving anyone any kind of 'truth', its about manipulation, control, wealth and power. PERIOD.

Comment: Re:if it has a fan, you are doing it wrong (Score 1) 59

I was surprised to find out that the video system on the i7 (not sure about i3) can run at full 1920 @120hz! when I connected a brand new vizio (39" iirc), I saw both the win7 panel and the display menus say it was syncing at 120hz.

that's way beyond what blueray can do. in fact, hdmi is not really spec'd for 1920@120hz unless you use dual link cables (or a single hdmi 1.4 cable). BD players don't yet support this, I don't think.

besides, I boycott bd. I hate sony, I will avoid giving them any money if I can avoid it and I get my content online in 'easy' mp4 and mkv format. the quality of modern rips at 120hz playback is quite impressive and unexpected for me since I was not sure the 120hz was real (lower end vizios use a backlight faking scheme to get 120 but mid end versions are actual 120hz refresh, no faking at all).

Comment: Re:if it has a fan, you are doing it wrong (Score 1) 59

that's not a lot of money. you get to use the case again and again, as long as you keep with a mini-itx format, you can upgrade for years and still use the same case. to me, there's value in that.

plus, silence is golden ;) if you have never used a 100% silent pc, you have no idea what you are missing. even the smallest whirring fan can be heard in a quiet room.

recently, I was cleaning up my garage and I found all the pci cards (etc) that I bought over the years. I found my first 'high end' pci card, an s3-968 4meg video card that I paid over $400 for, nearly 20 years ago. we forget that computers used to cost a LOT! now, they are mostly dirt cheap. $200 for a case that will let me watch movies and listen to music in full peace and quiet is easily worth 'half of that video card' that I bought so many years ago.

even going back just 10 years, the famous lian li cases were well over $100 for the aluminum mid tower and that did not include the $50-$100 you'd pay for a good psu.

today, on that fanless system, the psu fits inside the atx power socket and is just a small board (pico-psu) and those can be gotton for under $50.

gig-e: onboard. video: onboard. disk i/o: onboard. sound: onboard. just need a mobo, disk, mem and cpu.

when I look back at where we've been the past 20 or so years, I really don't mind the very low prices we now pay for very fast computer hardware. the case is on the pricey side, but its not outrageous, really, and there is solid value in removing all noise from the computer.

Comment: if it has a fan, you are doing it wrong (Score 4, Interesting) 59

a nice fanless i7 (haswell) build, with the magic being a heatpipe heatsink case and a 45w i7 chip:


search for streacom fc8 as the case. then, stay under 65w (to be safe) and you can be fully fanless.

for htpc use, there is NO reason to ever have a fan, again. even the i3 has a 35w chip that works just fine for movies and desktop stuff.

Comment: Re:Good (Score 3, Interesting) 261

by TheGratefulNet (#49131921) Attached to: It's Official: NSA Spying Is Hurting the US Tech Economy

and now that everyone 'knows' the nsa has exceeded their charter, the problem will be fixed and all will return to normal.

no? you don't agree?

neither do I! we'll NEVER be able to know, for sure, if they have disbanded, continued or even increased their hidden powers.

they can say 'ok, you caught us, we'll start following the law again' but even congresscritters won't know for sure. anyone who does know for sure, will NOT be telling us any truth about it, either.

so, what do you have from this? complete and permanent lack of trust in the three letter agencies in the US, and the equivalent ones overseas in pretty much every country.

why even talk about this anymore? those that have this power won't ever give it up, we will continue to be kept in the dark and nothing will change for the better.

cat is out of the bag, won't get back in and now we all have to live with cats, everywhere. so to to speak.

Comment: Re:Actually, ADM Rogers doesn't "want" that at all (Score 1) 400

by TheGratefulNet (#49121985) Attached to: NSA Director Wants Legal Right To Snoop On Encrypted Data

world war 2? really??

ok, let me turn your argument against you. the way history happened, and the side that we're on, yeah, the ability to decypher german messages helped us win.

but suppose we lost? suppose it was them that decyphered OUR important messages and suppose that freedom lost out when our private messages were understood by the germans.

see, the analogy only 'works' for you when it happens to correlate with the desired outcome. bad guy did something wrong, you caught him because you can read his messages. USA USA USA!f

but, not so fast. it could very easily be the other way around. I'm sure it has been, too, but that its not made public. the fact that foreign countries can pick up and decode our private messages surely have hurt us in the past and continue to hurt us.

the solution is clear, if you understand the above. everyone gets to have privacy or no one has it, not even governments and those who think that they are above the laws that the rest of us have to live by.

if you get privacy, we should have it. and that means that you don't get to break it! or, if you argue for that, then we demand symmetry. and I'm SURE you won't want that!

Comment: Re:News (Score 2) 210

by TheGratefulNet (#49096877) Attached to: 800,000 Using HealthCare.gov Were Sent Incorrect Tax Data

fallacy of omission, right there.

probably a few of them would not be ABLE to get ANY healthcare if they had 'pre-existing' conditions. at least they did get rid of that big problem!

I have a PEC that made it (past tense!) very hard to get private insurance, so this is an issue near and dear to my heart. I know I won't have a low price on my insurance, but I will at least be able to GET SOME AT ALL.

for those that don't have PEC's, you will never know the pain of being rejected, for no fault of your own, simply because you were unlucky.

The secret of success is sincerity. Once you can fake that, you've got it made. -- Jean Giraudoux