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User Journal

Journal: Classifications

Journal by squiggleslash

Apropos of nothing, just some thoughts in the shower this morning: I see people getting very upset when they hear Doom being described as "3D". "It's 2.5D!" they scream, pointing out that the maps are two dimensional albeit augmented with a height map.

User Journal

Journal: Wikipedia is fucked

Journal by squiggleslash

GamerGate targeted the most active editors on the Gamergate Controversy article for abuse for several months. They also abused the article itself, inserting blatant violations of WP:BLP (the policy that stops the Wikimedia Foundation from being sued for libel every five minutes) During this time the trolls, in parallel, continually leveled complaints at the relevant Wikipedia admin authorities.

User Journal

Journal: Nuts vs Nuttiers

Journal by squiggleslash

It's kind of annoying that when there's an active hate campaign against a group of people you're largely sympathetic to, it becomes harder to call out abuse and extremism by individuals within that group lest you play into the agenda of the hate campaign.

Another way of saying the same thing: GamerGate and similar mobs make it hard to have rational discussions about anything.

Comment: Re:Internet Explorer (Score 4, Informative) 98

Kinda. It wasn't impossible to write cross platform browser stuff in the late 1990s, when most corporations started this whole "We'll standardize on browser X" policy making, but it required a discipline that had most developers throwing their hands up in the air in disgust.

Unfortunately the situation in the late 1990s was:

- The major browsers were incompatible.
- IE4+ was the most standard. Yes, really. Those versions had a relatively complete implementation of CSS.
- IE came preinstalled with the standard operating system of that time.

That was it. That was why corporations went with it. It's why they adopted the monoculture in the first place. If Netscape had been a little quicker with Mozilla, or been more enthusiastic about CSS in Netscape 4.x, and if CSS had been a little more complete, things might have been different.

Comment: Re:Translation: (Score 1) 157

by squiggleslash (#48885687) Attached to: Surface RT Devices Won't Get Windows 10

Well, Apple is running a modified OS X on its iDevices, and Android is Linux based. Now, before you state the obvious: in both cases, the primary userland, that is, the userland that you're interacting with right now, is a stripped down power-optimized version.

And that's true of Windows 8.1 if you use the Metro UI too. Yes, OK, the desktop stuff is there, it's on "disk", ready to be swapped into memory if you want to run it, but it's not actually active in any serious way, it's waiting for a mouse click that isn't coming. Start your task manager now if you don't believe me, and take a look at the CPU usage of, say, Explorer (explorer.exe). 0%? That's because you're not doing anything with it. You're reading this web page.

I'm guessing that if I were running one of those "Ubuntu under Android" things that you can get for Android (I've never tried them as every device I've had had some kind of hardware issue preventing it from being likely to work, and the descriptions have always suggested they suck anyway...) I'd also see next to no increase in power usage, after starting it but not actually launching any X11 applications, despite that literally being an entire desktop operating system running on a phone, with all the components being in place.

So there really aren't any power implications when it comes to Microsoft shipping a full version of Windows for power saving devices, as long as - and they do - Microsoft includes a power efficient UI (Metro) for the tasks you'll be using the device for.

The only real reason for Microsoft not to ship their desktop OS on phones is that it takes up way too much disk space. As in "That 32G you get with an HP Stream 8 sounds sweet, but actually Windows takes up about around 20G of it, so get ready to buy an SD card straight away."

That really is it. I'm using that very device. Battery life is pretty ordinary for a tablet. I've seen much worse.

Comment: Re:get off my lawn (Score 1) 230

by ncc74656 (#48885263) Attached to: Dish Network Violated Do-Not-Call 57 Million Times

Charging for caller ID on landlines is a scam (like pretty much everything about telecommunications billing), but I've never seen cell phone service without caller ID.

I'm guessing you're not old enough to have ever had analog cell-phone service. I don't recall if caller ID was even offered as an add-on service, but I know I didn't have it with my phone and my service. Vibrating call alert and an 8-character dot-matrix alphanumeric LED readout (so you could attach names to the phone numbers stored in memory!) were expensive enough.

Comment: Re:No way! (Score 1) 508

What if your preconceived position is unbiased?

I know it's unlikely, but it's entirely possible the Senator researched the facts and drew his conclusion based upon those facts.

I personally think the STEM shortage H1B thing is more complex, but the view he's expressed isn't unusual from those looking at the facts. The very fact tech companies insist H1-Bs are the right approach, rather than a slight relaxation of green card standards, suggests the motivation here is cheap slave labor, not attracting talent.

Comment: Re:Who What Where When Why (Score 1) 101

Basically to increase page impressions, which means sweet advertising dollars. Essentially you take something that's a known quantity in terms of clickbait, in this case "Google is going to start a mobile phone company!", add some details that seem slightly plausable - it'd be awkward starting from scratch, and they'd obviously not get into bed with Verizon or AT&T as both are too large to allow themselves to be influenced, so you pick the two struggling operators instead, and BANG you end up on the front pages of numerous news aggregators, your links are retweeted wildly, and you get that sweet, sweet advertising cash.

Oh, wait, you meant "Why would Google..."? They wouldn't. The story is ridiculous. Sprint and T-Mo don't even use the same network technology with the exception of LTE, and the latter is suffering from a lack of widely supported standards in key areas.

Comment: Re:Wait, what PII? (Score 1) 203

by Enry (#48867579) Attached to: Healthcare.gov Sends Personal Data To Over a Dozen Tracking Websites

Yes and no. In a practical sense you're right and I said as much in the second paragraph. As for the legal definition of PII:

NIST Special Publication 800-122 defines PII as "any information about an individual maintained by an agency, including (1) any information that can be used to distinguish or trace an individual‘s identity, such as name, social security number, date and place of birth, mother‘s maiden name, or biometric records; and (2) any other information that is linked or linkable to an individual, such as medical, educational, financial, and employment information."

Part 2 is pretty much met given the data that's being sent to doubleclick. But Part 1 isn't being met. This is an AND statement, so for this to be PII, both parts have to be true.

Comment: Re:Paradox (Score 2) 200

It gives the impression that a high-paying job is relatively easy to get, and that's just not true.

My FIL hired developers out of the local community college for his business. AFAIK they were paid well enough (this was upstate NY) and they were using COBOL, but they did a good job and his business grew. Not every coding position means you'll get $90,000 and options.

But your larger point is still true. Maybe he should have said 'higher paying', but it's all relative.

Life would be so much easier if we could just look at the source code. -- Dave Olson

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