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Comment: Re:SWIFT Key (Score 2) 535

I'd pay most for a phone with a slide out game controller... only one was ever made that I know of and it was about 18 months behind spec-wise (on a gaming device... what were they thinking?) There are some clip on solutions, but it wouldn't be the same as having it built into the phone.

Comment: Going to miss my Droid 4's keyboard (Score 1) 535

by Wokan (#47551863) Attached to: Lots Of People Really Want Slideout-Keyboard Phones: Where Are They?

I get the reason why manufacturers aren't producing slide out keyboards. Internationalization, easier to break, etc. That doesn't mean I like what's happening.

I'd like to see a flip phone that doubles as a wi-fi hotspot and then I'll just use a tablet for the things I wanted the "smart" part of the smartphone to do. (And it will look a lot less stupid than talking on a phablet that barely fits in anyone's hands who isn't 7 feet tall.)

Comment: More on MA (Score 1) 157

by fyngyrz (#47539203) Attached to: Soccer Superstar Plays With Very Low Brain Activity

That translated into martial arts is roughly the equivalent of a 4th DAN, but for that you need longer due to 'regulations regarding examinations', waiting periods between 2 examinations.

Depends on the martial art. The most modern practice recognizes natural talent while incorporating considerable traditional technique; I assure you, everyone does not walk into their first day of training on an equal basis -- I've been teaching for decades and I think I've seen about every level of beginner skill there is. Some people are simply gifted. Certainly from there on in we see the difference between the shows-up-once-a-week and the person who seems to be there every hour they can possibly manage.

Also, more on topic, I can definitely assure anyone who is curious that you're not doing high level thinking when executing advanced martial arts techniques.

All you really need to do to understand this is think about bike riding. When you learn, you learn, you think like crazy. Which does you very little good. But eventually, you internalize the process (that's what I call it, anyway) and you can do it while carrying on a conversation with someone else, paying almost no attention at all to the activity of riding the bike. Those near-instant balance corrections, the precise amount of handlebar control and lean for cornering, all of that comes from "underneath." Same thing for advanced MA.

That whole business about finding your calm center and holding it -- that's a real thing. If you start thinking under threat or pressure, your performance will drop like a stone. The best technique comes from a relaxed, centered condition, accepting of whatever comes.

Comment: Re:GPLv4 - the good public license? (Score 1) 140

by steveha (#47535863) Attached to: The Army Is 3D Printing Warheads

There is an upper bound to how much stuff people will tolerate in a license. If you add even one restriction too many, people will stop using the software at all. If possible, people may fork an older version of the software; if not possible, people will switch to something else, or perhaps start their own project with a different license.

For an example from history, look at what happened to XFree86 when they changed the terms of their license. Pretty much overnight, almost everyone stopped using XFree86 and switched to the then-new X.org project. I'm sure that the XFree86 guys thought that the world would just accept the changes to the license, but that's not what happened; what happened instead is that XFree86 became instantly irrelevant.

So, if RMS takes your advice and adopts the restrictions you propose, some nonzero number of users will fall away, and new forks will begin to appear of the software. Meanwhile the military users will shrug and just deal with it. There is exactly zero chance that your proposed GPLv4 will change the plans of the military, even a little bit.

So now the question becomes: what are you trying to accomplish with your proposed GPLv4? If the benefits outweigh the costs, do it. But do it with full knowledge that there will be costs, and among the costs will be increased fragmentation of open-source software projects (more forks and more new projects).

A CNC machine or a 3D printer can be used to make medical parts, or weapons. It follows that if the military contributes code to control a CNC machine or 3D printer, the contributed code could be used for good purposes. One consequence of your proposed GPLv4 license: code under such a license would no longer receive contributions from the military. Is that part of what you wanted to achieve? I don't see this as a win, myself.

Comment: Re:I'll believe it when it actually happens. (Score 1) 116

by MozeeToby (#47533191) Attached to: eSports Starting To Go Mainstream

There's enough overlap from one game to another that it doesn't take a fresh 10,000 hours to master the next game that comes along. A surprising amount of the pro level skill is in fact mechanics (as in physically moving quickly and accurately enough to play the game at high level). There are several SC2 professionals that started their careers playing twitch FPS games for example. Within a genre... well there's not that much difference between SC2 and Command and Conquer, let alone Brood War and SC2.

Another aspect: This is probably one of the reasons Blizzard has stretched the SC2 release out over 6 years (that and making a dumptruck full of money). Every few years there's a new expansion which adds new elements but uses the same basic structure. Freshens up the game without forcing high level players to start from scratch.

Comment: Re:surpising (Score 4, Interesting) 168

by MozeeToby (#47531361) Attached to: Amazon's Ambitious Bets Pile Up, and Its Losses Swell

That's nice. Now for a thought. Let's imagine Amazon runs a script and raises all their prices, every single one of them, by 1% Would anyone notice? Would anyone care? Is 1% even enough to justify looking elsewhere for a product? They'd still be cheapest on 90% of things, why would anyone bother?

Guess what, they just boosted their profits by $700,000,000. Ok, lets say some people do shop elsewhere, so call it $600,000,000. Not just their revenues, their actual profits. And investors are running away

Comment: Mods, read the parent please! (Score 4, Insightful) 242

by MozeeToby (#47518623) Attached to: The Secret Government Rulebook For Labeling You a Terrorist

This is the real problem. We have no knowledge of who and what are on these lists, nor do we have any way of obtaining that knowledge. Every single person on them could be someone who trained in Pakistan with known terrorists or every single one of them could be regular people who have done absolutely nothing to warrant surveillance (which is what a "watch" list is, if you didn't gather by the name). We don't know, we can't know. The system is entirely and completely opaque to anyone outside it (and probably the vast majority of those tasked with updating it).

Comment: Here's what's wrong (again... still) (Score 3, Insightful) 82

These laws are toothless. "Must answer within 20 days"... or what? With no one held immediately culpable, the law is precisely meaningless.

Heard of anyone going to jail for this?

Heard of anyone paying a fine for this?

Even heard of anyone losing their job for this?

Compare: If you don't do something the government desires you to do, there will be consequences.

This is just like the constitution: "Highest law in the land" -- violate it -- as SCOTUS and congress have done over and over -- and the consequences? Nothing.

Just so you taxpayers know your place. The laws aren't for the government. Those are just laws "for show." The real laws are just for you. Because, you know, they care about you.

Comment: Re:What a fatuous, nebulous piece of crap??? (Score 1) 161

by steveha (#47496033) Attached to: Microsoft's Missed Opportunities: Memo From 1997

If licensed like DOS, it would have every bit as many compatibility problems.

Oh, not as bad, at least at first. The companies licensing MacOS would have had to make suitable hardware, and Apple could have held their feet to the fire to get compatibility and quality.

In those days, there was so much pent-up demand for Mac laptops that there were companies that would buy a Mac, crack it open and pull out the ROMs, build a laptop with the ROMs, and provide some sort of docking station so the original Mac would not be useless. This was about the most expensive way to make a laptop ever, but it was the only legal way to do it. Apple took forever to release a laptop product, and when they did, it was not what the customers wanted (heavy due to the lead-acid battery for one thing). Third-party Macs could have cost significantly more than generic "beige box" PCs and customers would have paid happily.

The thing is, Apple was charging crazy money for Macs. If Apple had adopted the Microsoft model, they would have had to accept lower margins on each Mac, and made it up on volume. Third-party Macs would have cost less than Apple official Macs but still would have sold a lot and buried the DOS-on-x86 PC. Apple was marking up Macs by about 100%... They were successfully getting a 50% margin on each Mac. Nobody else got away with that kind of markup, before or since.

It was great for Apple while it worked. But eventually Windows got to the point where it was kind of usable. And a Compaq running Windows would cost less than half what Apple was getting for a Mac. Hastings's Law: Adequate and cheaper tends to win against better but more expensive. Windows sales took off and Apple nearly died.

What saved Apple was the PowerBook, a laptop that really was what customers wanted. And a string of other successful products. And now Apple is doing very well. But IMHO, Apple could have had success like Microsoft in the 1990's had they adopted the Microsoft strategy of licensing to everyone and making a small profit on a huge volume; instead they nearly went out of business.

Even now, Apple isn't getting anything close to 50% margins on Macs. Those days are over.

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