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Comment: Re:Modern Television Style - Thanks Beyond Product (Score 2) 168

by _xeno_ (#47734459) Attached to: "MythBusters" Drops Kari Byron, Grant Imahara, Tory Belleci

So, you have a few minutes of introduction, then a quick preview of whats coming up, then an ad break. Then after the ad break, they show you what you saw earlier, a quick little update, and then another flash forward to what you'll see coming up.

You left out the part where the flash forward is often misleading and designed to make the next part seem more interesting than it really is. So you start the show with an exciting preview, then a bit of content, then another exciting preview. Then ads. Then a recap, then the discovering that what looked interesting in the preview was entirely uninterested followed by another deceptive preview.

But MythBusters does it even more annoyingly: they'll combine Adam and Jamie doing Myth A with Tori, Grant, and Kari doing Myth B. So you end up getting those little recap, content, preview segments first for Myth A and then for Myth B, followed by a block of ads. It makes the entire thing completely disjointed and pads out what should be two mini-episodes into a single 45 minute episode.

I've kind of wanted to take a MythBusters episode as aired and edit it to remove the preview/recap stuff and merge Myth A and Myth B into a single block of content and see how much content I'm left with. Except I'm too lazy to bother pirating an episode to do that.

+ - Sony Doesn't Know Why Anyone Would Buy a PS4 1

Submitted by _xeno_
_xeno_ (155264) writes "With cell phones and tablets becoming common, you might expect that dedicated TV-based consoles should be on the way out. Or, at least, Sony seems to think that may be the case. Yet the PS4 has already sold 10 million units, and Sony doesn't understand why. Sony's data indicates that the people buying the PS4 are for the most part not people who bought PS3s — leaving them concerned that they've already exhausted the market of people still interested in console gaming."

Comment: Re:That would include Java then... (Score 1) 105

by _xeno_ (#47672933) Attached to: Google Expands Safe Browsing To Block Unwanted Downloads

A lot of companies do. I have to have Java installed on my work computers - and not just because we end up writing a lot of Java code ourselves. The backup software IT uses requires 32-bit Java. (Not 64-bit, it will crash if you use 64-bit Java. Up until recently it would also crash if you used anything after Java 1.6, but since that's no longer supported, they finally fixed that.)

There are also a few internal sites that require Java applets, so that's fun to deal with too.

Comment: Re:Because (Score 2) 130

by _xeno_ (#47608113) Attached to: Inside the Facebook Algorithm Most Users Don't Even Know Exists

Exactly. It's extremely annoying having FB pick and choose what I see. I keep my news feed on "Most Recent" all the time. But every once in a while, without warning, they pull the ol' switcheroo and change it back to what they think are the "Top Stories". No FB, I actually know everyone in my friends list and I like to keep with with all of them, not just the few I communicate with most.

The article actually mentions this: that doesn't do what you think it does. All that does is sort the Top Stories feed in chronological order.

Users mostly rebelled against this because they peeked behind the curtain and realized that Facebook is indeed controlling the content we see. Naturally, Facebook placated the naive with a button that lets us view posts in chronological order. The illusion remains intact!

It's still the filtered view.

Comment: Re:And yet (Score 1) 130

by _xeno_ (#47607977) Attached to: Inside the Facebook Algorithm Most Users Don't Even Know Exists

Every time I visit my facebook page, I have to click on the "most recent first" option instead of having facebook decide what items I want to see.

Just in case you weren't aware, all that does is sort the Top Stories chronologically. You're still only seeing the posts Facebook decides you want to see.

As far as I know, there is absolutely no way to prevent Facebook from filtering posts. If there is I'd love to know what it is, but Most Recent isn't it. (I think it used to be, but enough people knew about it, so Facebook had to take that away. We will read the ads Zuckerberg wants us to read, dammit.)

Comment: Re:Because (Score 4, Informative) 130

by _xeno_ (#47607943) Attached to: Inside the Facebook Algorithm Most Users Don't Even Know Exists

There is a chronological order option, but it's hidden in a drop-down by the news feed link in the list on the upper-left portion of the Facebook UI. It also tends to randomly switch back to "Top Stories" mode as well as showing a little link for "back to Top Stories" at the top of the feed.

As another AC mentioned but I think deserves reiterating: that option merely sorts the Top Stories in chronological order. It does not show you all posts from all your friends. If Facebook has decided you don't want to see a post, you will not be seeing it. If they've decided you want to see fifty copies of various people posting some annoying Facebook quiz result even though you've hit the little "don't show me this" option a thousand times, well, you will be seeing fifty copies of that Facebook quiz. (After all, stupid Facebook quiz makers are important (paying) Facebook partners, and your friends are just more losers to show important (paying) Facebook partner content to.)

The only difference is that in Most Recent, they'll be in chronological order and not ranked by Facebook's "how much did the content publisher pay us?" algorithm.

Comment: Re:Is there an SWA Twitter police? (Score 1) 928

Do they have a team of people sitting around watching a Twitter feed, so that if anyone mentions Southwest they can pounce?

Actually, yes, they do.

I once tweeted to complain that of the four Southwest flights I took, a single one managed to get me to my destination on time. Every other flight was late in some way. My "favorite" of that group was the flight that landed 20 minutes ahead of schedule, only to be refused a gate at the airport and had to sit around on the taxiway somewhere for 40 minutes before being assigned a gate. (Apparently Southwest doesn't rent enough gates for all their flights at Seatac.) This counts as an "early" flight as far as their metrics are concerned, despite the fact that everyone was stuck on the plane until 20 minutes after it was scheduled to arrive.

Second place goes to the flight which landed at a Southwest hub that was stuck on the taxiway because there was no ground crew available to bring the plane to the gate and connect the jetway. Again: at a Southwest hub airport.

So, in any case, I tweeted this using Southwest (intentionally not using @SWA because I didn't really care at that point since by then I was done traveling) and got a response from a Southwest customer service agent.

The answer is yes: they do, in fact, search Twitter looking for people talking about Southwest and will reply to complaints.

Other businesses do this too. I've actually managed to get tech support issues resolved by whining about them on Twitter without even mentioning the a company handle. (For example, after complaining that I couldn't find drivers for Windows 8.1 for my Samsung laptop, a Samsung customer service agent replied telling me how to use their update tool to download working Windows 8 drivers.)

Comment: Re:I've got a great idea! (Score 1) 89

by _xeno_ (#47289189) Attached to: Mozilla Is Working On a Firefox OS-powered Streaming Stick

Why are you using "Waterfox" and 64 bit nightlies? The official Firefox builds themselves have been 64 bit for several years now.

Assuming you're using Mac OS X or 64-bit Linux. It's just Windows that doesn't have a 64-bit Firefox for some dumb, poorly explained reason. (Keep in mind that 64-bit Firefox on Mac OS X managed to support 32-bit plugins, so it's not that. Clearly they can manage.)

Comment: Re:I've got a great idea! (Score 3, Insightful) 89

by _xeno_ (#47289089) Attached to: Mozilla Is Working On a Firefox OS-powered Streaming Stick

Firefox already is 64-bit and has been for quite a while.

Just, not on Windows. I think their excuse was something to do with third party plugins not being 64-bit. (Although I'm pretty sure they have a 32-bit plugin shim that works on Linux and Mac OS X, so whatever.)

I don't really care, though, since Firefox 30 entirely broke Firefox with the proxy where I work. Now I can't access outside sites at all due to OCSP errors and I can't access internal sites since they removed NTLMv1 support as a "security hole."

Comment: Re:So much wrong (Score 1) 167

by _xeno_ (#47262077) Attached to: Android Needs a Simulator, Not an Emulator

If you had a "bog-standard iOS app that was a very simple UI in front of a website" that has complex long-running code in the UI thread, or for that matter complex code that takes "nearly a minute" to run in the first place, well ... that's not the simulator's fault.

But the fact that it hid it until someone finally tried it on a device is the simulator's fault.

And you've never had websites that did anything even somewhat complicated in JavaScript, huh? Since you aren't allowed to run interpreted code on iOS, it had to be redone in Objective-C, and the initial version turned out to be very slow. (Think "charting.")

I mean, sure, we could have just embedded a webpage and done it that way, but the existing JavaScript was already unacceptably slow or we wouldn't be looking at making an iOS app, now, would we?

Comment: Re:So much wrong (Score 0) 167

by _xeno_ (#47261757) Attached to: Android Needs a Simulator, Not an Emulator

Bullshit. You don't even need to be doing game development for the simulator to be useless.

Every experience I've had with the simulator has been that it's entirely useless for determining how the code will run on a real device. I mean, hell, you don't even have actual iOS running on the simulator, you're running a Mac OS X binary!

The simulator is effectively WINE for iOS: it reimplements the iOS APIs under Mac OS X, and the toolchain compiles an x86 binary instead of an ARM binary. No one should have to explain why that's entirely useless for trying to build an ARM app on iOS.

It isn't just game development. I had a bog-standard iOS app that was a very simple UI in front of a website. Try it in the simulator and it seems nice and snappy. Try in on a real device, and it's slow as molasses and nearly unusable.

Why? Because it turns out some code being run in the UI thread was excessively slow. So it had to be moved out to a new thread. (Which, arguably, it should have been anyway, but I'm not the guy who wrote the original code.) But on x86, it was fast enough that no one even noticed.

I remember optimizing said chunk of code so that it ran in around 0.2 seconds on the simulator - and took nearly a minute on an actual device.

The simulator is entirely useless for developing an actual app.

Comment: Re:Massive conspiracy (Score 5, Informative) 465

by _xeno_ (#47260333) Attached to: IRS Lost Emails of 6 More Employees Under Investigation

You've missed what the scandal was.

no Tea Party groups were denied their application from what i remember, but at least one progressive group was.

That was exactly the point. The IRS was making demands for data so onerous as to be literally impossible to comply with. They never denied Tea Party groups - but they just never allowed them, either, leaving them in a legal limbo. They instead demanded an impossible amount of documentation from them to "prove" their legality.

The fact that a progressive group was able to submit an application and be denied actually proves the IRS's malfeasance: they were capable of submitting an application at all, while Tea Party groups simply could not possibly meet the IRS's impossible demands for their applications.

Comment: Re:No Democratic groups were targeted (Score 1) 465

by _xeno_ (#47259637) Attached to: IRS Lost Emails of 6 More Employees Under Investigation

I'm pretty sure that article actually proves my point, but it's impossible to tell, because the very first thing they do is throw up a histogram where they should be using a pie chart. (At least, I think those bars are showing percentages. It's hard to tell because their method of data collection is utterly inscrutable.)

But it looks like the "progressive" groups that were targeted were almost exclusively pro-marijuana groups. You know, progressive groups that are against the current administration's policies. Which is what I said: the only progressive groups targeted were those that went against the current administration. (Remember, while Obama may be left of center, many progressive groups are even further left.)

Groups backing the current administration were simply not targeted. Only those against it - be they right or left of the administration - were targeted.

Comment: No Democratic groups were targeted (Score 2) 465

by _xeno_ (#47259429) Attached to: IRS Lost Emails of 6 More Employees Under Investigation

Tons of libs targeted too.

Name one.

As far as I know, the only "liberal" groups that were targeted were liberal groups that were also against the current administration. Pro-Democrat Party groups, on the other hand, were not targeted.

This is absolutely a political issue and a gross overstepping of power on behalf of the current administration and they absolutely should be investigated for it.

Never say you know a man until you have divided an inheritance with him.