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Comment: Re:Really? This is a problem! (Score 1) 398

by ameoba (#48195771) Attached to: Speed Cameras In Chicago Earn $50M Less Than Expected

It reminds me of tobacco tax they tried to push through a few years ago in Oregon. They claimed that it would both reduce smoking and provide funding for children's health.

Either one of those things was wrong or they were setting up a healthcare program that would run out of money in the next few years.

Comment: Wet Dream (Score 2) 99

by ameoba (#47737991) Attached to: The Tech Fixes the PS3 Still Needs, Eight Years On

That's a fanboy wishlist, not a well thought out, profit-oriented list of reasonable items that have any hope of getting added to a down-market, end of life console that's in cost-cutting, discount sales mode.

The only one of those that seems halfway reasonable would be upgrading the WiFi & that's only because it might be easier/cheaper to source modern WiFi chips during the extended production run.

Comment: The real reason IT departments are finall moving (Score 1) 246

by ameoba (#44849869) Attached to: Majority of Enterprise Customers Finally 'Migrating Away From Windows XP'

When was the last time you actually did a fresh install of XP? Just the other day I tried doing it on an early Vista-era laptop.

To start with, the XP (SP2 media - it was the only XP license I could find) installer couldn't recognize my SATA drive. Lacking a floppy drive, I had to go searching for ways to get the drive recognized. I was left with two options: Either rebuild my installation media & slipstream drivers onto it or go into BIOS and set my drive controller to a legacy emulation mode.

Once I got the base OS installed, almost none of my hardware was recognized. Neither my wired nor my wireless network controllers were recognized. Sound and video not recognized. There were about a half dozen other unrecognized devices that Windows couldn't even tell what type of device it was. Fortunately, being a laptop, I was able to go to the manufacturers site to locate and download all the drivers on another PC and bring them over on a USB stick. I, knowing that I would need to prepare myself, took the opportunity to grab Service Pack 3. These installed without a hitch.

Finally, having an installed system with the (mostly) recognized hardware & the latest service pack, I tried running Windows Update. You'd think that would work, right?


The Windows update components installed on the system tried to connect to a service that no longer exists. All of the links it threw me to troubleshoot the problem 404ed. None of the troubleshooting docs on the MSFT website seemed to help. There were automated "FixIt" scripts that didn't do anything and tried linking me to a website that no longer existed. Somewhere along the way it was suggested I install the .NET framework - the download page barely functioned in my crufty old browser. Eventually I found a post in a forum with a link to an installer for an updated Windows update component which I gladly grabbed and installed.

After installing a functional WU client, I tried, again, to update my system. It spent a good 45 minutes searching for updates to my system. At the end, it returned a single required update - yet another version of the Windows Update client. Download, update & reboot.

The next time I ran Windows Update it, again, spun its wheels for 45 minutes. Finally, it came up with a list of over 150 updates that I would need to install, several of which were marked as needing to be handled individually. At this point, I'm well over 4 hours into the process.

If I'm having this sort of trouble installing and updating XP on hardware that could have originally been purchased with XP, just imagine how much trouble you'd have with something contemporary. This is why IT departments are moving away from XP; getting new systems up and running is already a nightmare. When everything goes EOL in less than a year it's just going to get worse. Even if I had known all the issues that would pop up & how to address them, I would still have been looking at 3 hours to get the base system installed before I even got around to installing any software.

In the end, I gave up on XP and just installed Fedora. It took all of about 15 minutes to install off a USB stick, recognized all my hardware & performs like a charm on this old (ca 2007) machine.

Comment: Re:Larry Correia wrote an interesting refutation (Score 3) 1255

by ameoba (#44734565) Attached to: Why One Woman Says Sending Your Kid To Private School Is Evil

At least the original author was sincere - this guy is just being an asshole because he knows it'll bring in pageviews. Once you've started using "Liberal" as an insult, you're just preaching to the choir & have no intent of actually engaging in rational discourse.

Comment: Not really. (Score 5, Insightful) 127

by ameoba (#43886101) Attached to: Will Your Video Game Collection Appreciate Over Time?

Let's look at the typical life-cycle of a collectible using baseball cards.

When they first came out in the early 1900s, nobody really cared about them. Through the 70s and 80, they were mostly seen as kids stuff and abused, lost & thrown away. Supplies of cards up through this time are fairly limited. Around 1990, news hit of a baseball card selling for half a million dollars. Things changed overnight - every kid was treating their cards like treasure. People have held on to them in pristine condition. These days, you can buy unopened, complete sets of cards from the mid-90s for less than their original retail value. They have become so un-collectible that their value hasn't even kept up with inflation.

Video game collecting has passed this point. Sure, you might still see big deals on used NES collections but anything much newer was sold in large enough numbers and preserved well enough that unless you have sealed boxes, it's just used junk. There's always going to be exceptions but, for the most part, I wouldn't plan my retirement on keeping my XBox clean.

No problem is so formidable that you can't just walk away from it. -- C. Schulz