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Comment: Re:finally (Score 1) 77

by almitydave (#47891397) Attached to: Amazon Instant Video Now Available On Android

UPDATE: It works now on my Galaxy Tab 4 8". Here's what I did:

-Uninstall the Amazon app I got from the Google Play app store.
-Install the Amazon app store by downloading the apk from using a web browser.
-Using the Amazon app store, install the Amazon app listed there and the Amazon Instant Video app.

Now, from the Amazon app, I can peruse the Prime Video selections, and watch free items.

A word of caution: after doing this, it enabled 1-click purchasing (it was previously disabled for my Amazon account), which I disabled, but forced on 1-click purchasing for digital items with no way to disable. Be careful what you click.

Comment: Wrist-centric use cases (Score 2) 471

by almitydave (#47872615) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Smartwatch Apps Could You See Yourself Using?

A successful smartwatch app would need to be one that was most usable in the same way you use a wristwatch - glancing at it occasionally, non-complicated UI interaction, etc.

Aside from the obvious fitness apps, there will be infinity variations on telling time - one that uses the number system from "Predator" would be neat - and calendar/agenda apps would be the most useful. If they support NFC, you could share schedules and contacts with a fist-bump and give new meaning to the phrase "synchronize your watches."

GPS navigation might be useful as a wrist-based app too, especially when on foot, bike, or when driving in jurisdictions that prohibit use of cell phones.

The key is they have to be apps that are better suited to a wristwatch form factor than a phone, although I'm sure there will be tons that aren't, just because devs will want to cash in on the latest new thing.

Comment: Re:Don't try this in Europe (Score 1) 63

by almitydave (#47837309) Attached to: Appeals Court Clears Yelp of Extortion Claims

Check out the context for yourself. The quote is from Starship Troopers.

It's not that Heinlein doesn't understand or is deliberately obfuscating, he's simply using a perspective different from your own, IMHO. The way I interpret Heinlein here is that rhetoric and flowery prose doesn't *give* us freedom, and that freedom is something that needs to be fought for, to get, and to retain. Read (or re-read) the novel -- I think you might learn something.

I read it during my formative years, and it was influential in the shaping of my political views; but that was so long ago I couldn't tell you what it said or what I liked about it (the politics part - what's not to like about powered armor?). In the given context, it's not a different perspective from my own - it's what I was saying here and elsewhere: that simply recognizing rights doesn't secure them. Out of context, that quote sounds like Heinlein doesn't even believe in the concept of rights inherent to a person, or that it's irrelevant.

What the Declaration states, and what I believe as well, is that these rights are real and exist; whether respected, trodden upon, forgotten, or codified into law; and the moral corollary that everyone has a duty to respect the rights of others; disagreeing with the assertion that rights are arbitrary, not transcendental, and can be revoked by a society. Ultimately it's a philosophical question: what's a "right", how do we get them, and how do they relate to morality in the context of society?

Comment: Re: in the meantime : (Score 1) 204

by almitydave (#47837199) Attached to: Dell Demos 5K Display

Heh, some mod doesn't like the 2560x1440 options, apparently.

Sadly all (or almost all) 2560*1440 monitors are 27". That's too big for my tastes; I find I have to move my head (and my neck) to look around the screen, and that is NOT good.

24" would be MUCH better.

That's a good point - I was considering one of those when I got my 24", and the dpi on the 24 is about as high as I'd like for a desktop monitor (using standard scaling levels). I currently have two displays connected, both at home and work, so I'm used to having to move my head to look around. I consider 2560x1440 a single-monitor upgrade from two 19" 1280x1024 displays, and at 27" should be less head & neck movement than the dual-monitor setup, but for that dpi to be legible might require you to sit too close. You'd need 30+" to match the dpi of the dual-19 setup, and that might require too much vertical craning.

...which is where 29" 2560x1080 comes into play!


Space Station's 'Cubesat Cannon' Has Gone Rogue 143

Posted by Soulskill
from the Look-Dave,-I-can-see-you're-really-upset-about-this. dept.
astroengine writes: Last night (Thursday), two more of Planet Lab's shoebox-sized Earth imaging satellites launched themselves from aboard the International Space Station, the latest in a series of technical mysteries involving a commercially owned CubeSat deployer located outside Japan's Kibo laboratory module. Station commander Steve Swanson was storing some blood samples in one of the station's freezers Friday morning when he noticed that the doors on NanoRack's cubesat deployer were open, said NASA mission commentator Pat Ryan. Flight controllers at the Johnson Space Center in Houston determined that two CubeSats had been inadvertently released. "No crew members or ground controllers saw the deployment. They reviewed all the camera footage and there was no views of it there either," Ryan said.

Comment: Re:in the meantime : (Score 0) 204

by almitydave (#47835951) Attached to: Dell Demos 5K Display

when will we finally get hihger than 1920*1080 resolution monitors at a decent price ????

What do you consider a decent price? I got a 24" 1920x1200 IPS monitor (HP zr2440w) this year for $300 - it's fantastic. Newegg has several 2560x1440 screens for less than $400. 20 years ago a decent 17" CRT cost $1000. That's only 786 pixels/$. My current screen is almost 10 times that. 15, counting for inflation. And they're much better pixels.

If you're only looking at the sub-$200 budget monitor market, you're going to have to accept compromises.

(all prices USD)


Ask Slashdot: What Are the Strangest Features of Various Programming Languages? 727

Posted by Soulskill
from the object-disoriented-programming dept.
itwbennett writes: Every programming language has its own unique quirks, such as weird syntax, unusual functionality or non-standard implementations -- things that can cause developers new to the language, or even seasoned pros, to scratch their heads in wonder (or throw their hands up in despair). Phil Johnson has rounded up some of the strangest — from the + operator in JavaScript to the trigraphs in C and C++ and indentation level in Python. What programming language oddities cause you the most grief?"

Comment: Re:Don't try this in Europe (Score 1) 63

by almitydave (#47829463) Attached to: Appeals Court Clears Yelp of Extortion Claims

The legal philosophy in the USA is laid out in the Declaration of Independence: all men are created equal and endowed by their creator with inalienable human rights, including life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Ah yes, [life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness]... Life? What 'right' to life has a man who is drowning in the Pacific? The ocean will not hearken to his cries. What 'right' to life has a man who must die to save his children? If he chooses to save his own life, does he do so as a matter of 'right'? If two men are starving and cannibalism is the only alternative to death, which man's right is 'unalienable'? And is it 'right'? As to liberty, the heroes who signed the great document pledged themselves to buy liberty with their lives. Liberty is never unalienable; it must be redeemed regularly with the blood of patriots or it always vanishes. Of all the so-called natural human rights that have ever been invented, liberty is least likely to be cheap and is never free of cost. The third 'right'?—the 'pursuit of happiness'? It is indeed unalienable but it is not a right; it is simply a universal condition which tyrants cannot take away nor patriots restore. Cast me into a dungeon, burn me at the stake, crown me king of kings, I can 'pursue happiness' as long as my brain lives—but neither gods nor saints, wise men nor subtle drugs, can ensure that I will catch it."

--Robert A. Heinlein

I love Robert Heinlein, but that quote makes it look like he either doesn't understand the concept of human rights, or he's deliberately obfuscating the topic. I'll have to assume the latter.

"A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices." -- William James