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Comment: ROT13 (Score 5, Funny) 635

by Unxmaal (#47788601) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Old Technology Can't You Give Up?

Jr'er ab fgenatref gb ybir Lbh xabj gur ehyrf naq fb qb V N shyy pbzzvgzrag'f jung V'z guvaxvat bs Lbh jbhyqa'g trg guvf sebz nal bgure thl V whfg jnaan gryy lbh ubj V'z srryvat Tbggn znxr lbh haqrefgnaq Arire tbaan tvir lbh hc Arire tbaan yrg lbh qbja Arire tbaan eha nebhaq naq qrfreg lbh Arire tbaan znxr lbh pel Arire tbaan fnl tbbqolr Arire tbaan gryy n yvr naq uheg lbh.

Android

Android Needs a Simulator, Not an Emulator 167

Posted by Soulskill
from the simulated-grass-is-greener dept.
An anonymous reader writes Jake Wharton, Android Engineer at Square, has written an article about one of the big problems with building apps for Android: developers need a simulator for testing their software, rather than an emulator. He provides an interesting, technical explanation of the difference between them, and why the status quo is not working. Here are the basics of his article: "A simulator is a shim that sits between the Android operating system runtime and the computer's running operating system. It bridges the two into a single unit which behaves closely to how a real device or full emulator would at a fraction of the overhead. The most well known simulator to any Android developer is probably (and ironically) the one that iOS developers use from Apple. The iPhone and iPad simulators allow quick, easy, and lightweight execution of in-development apps. ... There always will be a need for a proper emulator for acceptance testing your application in an environment that behaves exactly like a device. For day-to-day development this is simply not needed. Developer productivity will rise dramatically and the simplicity through which testing can now be done will encourage their use and with any luck improve overall app quality. Android actually already has two simulators which are each powerful in different ways, but nowhere near powerful enough."

Comment: McMurdo (Score 5, Interesting) 437

by Unxmaal (#31652220) Attached to: Do Car Safety Problems Come From Outer Space?

When I was working for NASA, on the NISN network, we'd get these weird router crashes for the old Cisco router located at (or very near) the South Pole in Antarctica. It was always a memory problem, and I'd always have to call someone to get them to powercycle the router. It irritated me to keep bothering those guys, so I opened a case with Cisco TAC.

The TAC guy sent a terse response, saying that particular crash was a "transient memory error" due to "alpha radiation or sun spots." That really pissed me off -- Cisco TAC just gave me a standard BOFH response! I escalated, and swung the NASA club around some, and finally got a senior engineer on the phone. "You said this router's at the South Pole, right? So that means it's at very high altitude, with very little ozone shielding, right?" "Umm, yeah." "Well there you go. There's a lot more radiation at that altitude than at sea level. Our stuff's only rated for sea level. See if they can .. I dunno, put a lead blanket over it or something."

I relayed the info to my contact at McMurdo, and he laughed and said he'd figure something out.

On a hunch, I checked the other two "high-altitude" routers we had, and sure enough, they both had a statistically higher failure rate for "transient memory errors".

Blackberry

Hands-On Look At the BlackBerry Storm 2 213

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the running-scared dept.
Barence writes "PC Pro has had time to play with the new BlackBerry Storm 2, and came away impressed. The new touch system garners the most praise, doing away with the mechanical click screen of the original Storm — the new screen gives a kind of localised haptic feedback which 'feels just like clicking a button.' The phone, announced today, also includes Wi-Fi, BlackBerry OS 5, and increased storage, so it's looking an enticing prospect. After the disappointment of the Palm Pre, could this be the smartphone to beat?"
Windows

Michael Dell Says Windows 7 Will Make You Love PCs 627

Posted by samzenpus
from the most-improved-OS-award dept.
ruphus13 writes "In a recent talk at the Churchill Club, Michael Dell addressed several topics, including the fact that Windows 7 is poised to take advantage of the upgrade cycle. Dell has always been a strong MS OEM ally and it is now hoping to cash in again from the impending upgrades. From the post: 'Dell made plain several times that he sees the installed base of technology as very old, and sees a coming "refresh cycle" for which he has high hopes. "The latest generation of chips from Intel is strong, particularly Nehalem," he said, adding, "and Windows 7 is on its way." (The operating system arrives Oct. 22nd, although Microsoft's large-volume licensees are already getting it.) He pointed out that many business are running Windows XP, which is eight years old. "I've been using Windows 7 for a long time now," he said, "and if you get the latest processor technology and Office 2010 with it, you will love your PC again. It's a dramatic improvement."'"
PlayStation (Games)

Improving the PlayStation Store 107

Posted by Soulskill
from the learn-from-competitors dept.
This opinion piece takes stock of Sony's PlayStation Store, examining its flaws and the areas Sony needs to improve as their gaming systems come to rely upon it more and more. The problems and suggested solutions involve everything from UI elements to demo availability to pricing inconsistencies. "Some people may say that the Microsoft Points scheme is a little confusing, but it is consistent. If a game is 800MSP in the US, it's 800MSP everywhere else. What a MSP is worth is up to the store, but for the most part they're close. The PlayStation Store on the other hand can be all over the place. While most games in North America keep to the same price point — such as $9.99 or $14.99, converting that over to Europe is another thing entirely. For example, Flower came out earlier this year for $9.99USD. In Australia a $10USD game gets converted to $12.95AUD. Or does it? Bomberman Ultra just came out, and it's $15.95AUD. Heavy Weapon gets released for $12.95AUD, while Capcom’s previous efforts, like Commando 3, convert to $15.95. The same thing also happens for more expensive titles. Both Battlefield 1943 and Fat Princess were released for $14.99 in the US, but in Australia they're priced at $19.95AUD and $23.95 respectively."
Role Playing (Games)

Free-To-Play Switch Going Well For D&D Online 201

Posted by Soulskill
from the price-is-right dept.
babboo65 writes "Dungeons and Dragons Online is enjoying a second life in terms of player count and buzz, all thanks to its new business strategy: giving the game away. Turbine is making their MMO as accessible as possible, and that includes making players who don't pay anything as happy as possible. Subscriptions are up 40 percent. Ars explores how free can be very profitable."
Power

Comparing Performance and Power Use For Vista vs. Windows 7 WIth Clarksfield Chi 119

Posted by timothy
from the batteries-need-help dept.
crazipper writes "Back when Intel launched its Core i5/i7 'Lynnfield' CPUs, Tom's Hardware ran some tests in Windows 7 versus Vista to gauge the benefits of the core parking and ideal core optimizations, said to cut power consumption in the new OS. It turned out that Win7 shifted the Nehalem-based CPUs in and out of Turbo Boost mode faster, resulting in higher power draw under load, while idle power was a slight bit lower. The mobile version of the architecture was claimed (at the time) to show a greater improvement in moving to Win7. Today there's a follow-up with the flagship Clarksfield processor that shows the same aggressive P-state promotion policies giving Win7 a significant performance advantage with Core i7 Mobile. However, power consumption is higher as well."
The Almighty Buck

Device Protects Day Traders From Emotional Trading 260

Posted by samzenpus
from the never-again dept.
Philips Electronics, a Netherlands-based company, has come up with a device designed to protect day traders from emotionally based trading decisions. The Rationalizer measures your galvanic skin response and lets you know when you are under stress. An online trader can then take a "time-out, wind down and re-consider their actions," according to the company. This may have come too late for us, but at least future generations won't have to live through the horror of angry day trading.
Displays

First Look At Acer's 3D Laptop 151

Posted by timothy
from the but-what-about-time dept.
Barence writes "Acer today revealed the world’s first 3D laptop, the Acer Aspire 5738PG, which will launch alongside Windows 7 on October 22. It uses a combination of software and specially coated glass on the 15.4in screen, along with a standard set of polarised glasses. Initial impressions were a bit iffy, and whether anyone actually needs a 3D laptop is another question entirely, but we'll find out this month."
The Military

Behind the Scenes With America's Drone Pilots 419

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-can-see-my-house-from-here dept.
An anonymous reader writes "As President Obama meets with advisors on an Afghanistan strategy today (who are now leaning more toward Joe Biden's more-drones policy), and even as Al Qaeda claims it's not all that scared of drones, the new issue of Esquire takes the first real in-depth look at the American military's UAV build-up. Defense geek Brian Mockenhaupt spends some time on the ground in Afghanistan, as well as back at the Pentagon, where the pilots ('more like snipers than fighter pilots') are playing a kind of role-playing game, getting to know terrorists' daily ins and outs. Looks like these Reaper drones are the real wave of the future, eh?"
Linux Business

How Nokia Learned To Love Openness 180

Posted by Soulskill
from the deviant-corporate-practices dept.
ChiefMonkeyGrinder writes "Once Sebastian Nyström laid out the logic of moving to open source, there was very little resistance within Nokia to doing so. I think that's significant; it means that, just as the GNU GPL has been tested in various courts and found valid, so has the logic behind open source — the openness that allows software to spread further, and improve quicker, for the mutual benefit of all. That idea is also increasingly accepted by hard-headed business people: it's become self-evident that it's a better way."
Operating Systems

Acer Launching Dual Android/Windows 7 Netbook 105

Posted by Soulskill
from the now-make-them-fight dept.
Barence writes "Acer has unveiled an Aspire netbook that dual boots Google Android and Windows 7. 'User demand is not there for [other forms of] Linux [but] we never give up. We adjust,' said Jim Wong, Acer senior corporate vice president. 'We introduce Android with the Windows OS, and why Android? Because it has the best connectivity built into the OS.' Acer has also talked up Google's forthcoming Chrome OS. 'Chrome can be a viable alternative to Microsoft's OSes for web applications on different mobile devices,' he explained."

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