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Comment No, just refuse "directions only" GPS (Score 1) 381

Like ONSTAR was in my Camaro, just verbal directions and arrows. I never used that once. I did have a tablet that I could mount to my dash so that it could display Navigation with a MAP so I could use my common sense to double check, in the off chance that the computer had picked an invalid route (or one through a bad neighborhood). Waze in particular saved me from a few hours-long traffic snarls that without its input I could not have gotten around, due to complete unfamiliarity with side streets in that area. Having a MAP along with advise that I could follow or ignore, along with software that was capable of working to continue to guide me despite me making a different choice, was invaluable.

There is NO WAY I would attempt to navigate in a new city or country without at least SOME positional information to go with a map. The technology is useful. I see no need to behave like a luddite simply because "machines"

The people that stubbornly obey directions without reference to even a map are at fault, not the software.

I also blame "safety experts" who think that having in-car GPS display a map in transit is "distracting and unsafe" and insist on "no screen, directions only" GPS. Useless.

Comment Re:Too bad they pushed Love out (Score 4, Interesting) 200

SYS V needs to go open next, not that overloaded slowlaris, but lean mean SYS V

I was under the impression that the entire POINT of SYS V was for the major UNIX vendors to re-implement the guts of Unix as a clearly, enforceably, proprietary product (after the CONTU recommendations and the resulting copyright law changes explicitly extended copyright to software), then move to it and orphan the original development thread. (This might make opening it a hard sell to the members of the consortium.)

There were at least a couple issues with the proprietary status of the AT&T code:

One issue was that AT&T was still a government-regulated utility monopoly and there were some requirements about disclosing and releasing non-telephone-related inventions they came up with.

The big issue was that, before copyright applied and before software patents were hacked up (by recasting software as one embodiment of, or a component of, a patentable machine or process), the only protection was trade secret and the related contract law. Trade secrets generally stop being enforceable when the secret out of the bag (with some details about whether the claimant contributed to the leak). Bell Labs had shipped code to a LOT of educational institutions. When the U of New South Wales used the System 6 kernel code and an explanation of it as the two-volume text for an Operating System class, the textbooks became an underground classic. This, along with AT&T's benign-neglect licensing policies, led to the burst of little, cheap, generic UNIX boxes, as this was also when microcomputer chips were just becoming powerful enough to do the job.

Up to then a big barrier to entry was that every new machine needed a custom O.S. to deploy, and these were enormous, machine specific, and mostly in assembler. That made it an expensive, undertaking, suitable only for financial giants. But all but under 2,000 lines of Unix was in C, and the entire kernel, which included essentially all the platform-specific code as a subset, was well under 10,000 lines of code. If you had a C compiler and assembler for your new machine, it was a matter of a few man-months to port it and get it up and running. Essentially ALL the utilities and applications came right over. You didn't have to train users, either, because they all worked pretty much just like what they'd used in college.

The game was:
1. Grab a bootleg copy of the code.
2. Port it to your machine and get it working.
3. Go to AT&T and ask for a license "to port Unix to our new machine and sell it."
4. AT&T, as a matter of policy, completely ignores any "violations" you may have committed during the porting phase and cuts you a license at a very reasonable price.
5. You "port Unix in an AMAZINGLY short time" (like the ten minutes it takes to tell Sales to go to market) and you're in business.
6. You (with your new business) and AT&T (with their small cut) slap each other on the back and laugh all the way to the bank. PROFIT! for you. (profit) for AT&T.
7. Because of the policy in 4., everybody ELSE manearly everbody's king a new machine knows they can do the same thing. So many do. AT&T gets a rakeoff from ALL of them. PROFIT! for AT&T. Far more than if they went dog-in-the-manger, held up the first few for all the traffic would bear, and got no more customers for Unix.

And because of this, it was in nearly everbody's interest to NOT challenge the AT&T-proprietary status of Unix. And it stayed this way until SCO's management screwed up and altered step 4. (Even then the case turned on other issues, so it never did come to the point of attacking AT&T's claim that Unix code was proprietary.)

Comment Re:Why only trees? (Score 1) 73

piezo generators have less than a percent of efficiency is why.

I thought it was closer to 80%, at least theoretically. Can you give me a reference for that "Less than 1%" number?

Whether this maps into anything like that number in a practical device for converting "found" mechanical power - such as tree sway or vibrations - is another matter entirely.

Comment Can this be co-installed with the stock version? (Score 2) 177

Can this be co-installed with the current version (for instance, on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, the latest Long Term Support Ubuntu release)?

Or do you have collisions which require you to purge the old one in order to try the new one, or which cause foulups if you don't?

(Honest question. I've seen a lot of that kind of thing with other projects. So now I'm a bit shy of trying the latest-and-greatest release of any tool on the production machines I depend on for time-critical work.)

Comment Re:Huh? (Score 1) 70

3D printed objects aren't the strongest due to the way the layers are laminated together. I imagine the last place you'd want a weak join is on a 150+ foot long blade swishing through the air.

You betcha.

Especially since a spinning blade gets more efficient as it gets faster. Higher speed = lower torque for a given horsepower density, so a higher tip speed ratio (TSR) wastes less energy "twisting" the air downwind.

Efficient wind turbines run at a TSR of 6 or higher - which means that in windy conditions the tips are running at an appreciable fraction of the speed of sound.

If one of those puppies breaks off it's NOT the kind of baseball bat or boomerang you want coming toward you, whether flying or summersaulting along the ground. (Imagine a caber toss with giants and redwood logs.) Not to mention what the resulting unbalanced spinning does to the other blades and the pylon.

Comment Re:Ok. (Score 1) 654

In this case I use Google cache, if Google or Bing caches dont work - Im done. There just isnt anything on the internet worth putting up with scumbag ads which are obtrusive, distracting and full of scumware, malware, trojans and script hacks. I root android only to use AdAway.

Ads that are not "worked into" the content are toast. And good ads, eg, BMW chase ads or superbowl ads that are funny often become the destination for people to watch on youtube, etc. So marketers best be making great products, have great service, get high ratings on the etailer and build a brand and get creative with advertising.

Marketing rats dont realize most sheeple dont care or know why they buy things and the people who are conscious make heavy duty use of comparative reviews, forums, youtube reviews, etc.

The days of spam working are over imho.

Comment Re:Taking CO2 from the atmosphere?? (Score 1) 154

Really? What's your end to end solution achievable with today's technology at a price that populations and governments will accept, and which doesn't immediately make transportation people and governments already own useless?

As important as both the issues you raise are (and the deforestation one may be the more achievable), the reality of it is that "that's it, no more fossil fuel" without a reasonable alternative will never happen, even if it kills us, because without a reasonable alternative, many of us will likely die anyhow.

Comment It's pretty obvious what happened to them (Score 4, Insightful) 219

The company forced them to train their replacements, who are non-citizens brought in to the do the same job cheaper because the utility is run by people who apparently feel it's fine to sell out their own countrymen to make a buck.

I don't know what's so mysterious about this. It is what it is. The only question is what are you going to do about it?

I have a really simple solution. Abolish corporate taxes in their current form and replace them with a head count tax. Every US citizen is, say, $1000/year. Every legal immigrant is $2500. Every foreign national abroad, including contract workers on outsourced work, gets a fee of $5,000. If at any time, more than 25% of your work is either performed by subsidiaries or outsourcing firms based overseas that has a sales or some other nexus into the US, you pay FICA on your global workforce including contracted employees.

So carrot and stick. A big, incredibly sweet looking carrot and a stick that has nails driven into it because we want to make the choice obvious.

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