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Comment Re:No (Score 1) 121

I'm sort of going to second this too, I have an OpenRD which is using a slightly older version of the Marvell CPU. The docs initially appear open, but I quickly ran into a number of cases where they wanted me to sign an NDA to get the full documentation covering the information I needed.

Basically, all the useful information is not in the public tech docs...

Comment Re:ummmm (Score 1) 389

States rights are good when you want to break federal law. But state rights are shit when the state wants to name something in it.

Sounds like business as usual. I live in TX where the idea of "local control" is translated as "local control as long as you conform to the political ideology of the state government" The state government that caps all forms of local taxes (from sales tax, to property taxes). The same state that mandates everything from the education curriculum to limits on what counties/cities can do with zoning regulations, to whether a city can ban plastic bags (ok the latter didn't pass... yet).

The "conservatives" in TX usually manage to pass a couple hundred new laws restricting things that were previously free or the ordnance of local government every time they go to Austin.

Comment Re:15? (Score 3, Interesting) 354

Besides what the AC said (which I 100% agree with) XP's real feature over windows 2000 was probably the license model change. Before XP the licenses weren't tied to the hardware, and weren't verified by MS. I've always though that the main reason for the change. The UI color style (which could be revered to 2000's look) was to make people thing they were getting something over 2000.

The fact that it was such a small update over 2k is probably most of what made it successful. All the major issues were worked by the users of 2k. That is basically what happened with windows7 too. Vista users dealt with all the bugs, and when it was finally a reasonable product MS just released it with the appropriate service packs as a new product.

Comment Buddy of mine (Score 1) 136

Went to CMU for a month in the summer of '93. He came back with a somewhat professional looking CD that had the source code for linux, the slackware floppy images, and some other junk (maybe it was SLS).

We spent a day or two installing it on my 486sx20 (which actually involved creating a bunch of floppies, and installing from them IIRC).

Not much worked, for sure X didn't. I wasn't very impressed, so I stopped messing with it. Some time passed and I tried again (possibly with another CD). I remember eventually getting X running a few months later. and probably the networking support too. Two things I remember from that time period, was my buddy impressively getting his VGA monitor to run at some resolution far beyond what it was designed for. Which then resulted in trying it on a bunch of different monitors and a number of them strangely dying not long after (the noises they made were quite memorable too). Including my buddies IIRC..

But, I didn't really stick with it other than to show it to people and mess around a bit once in a while. It didn't have any games, the command line wasn't DOS, and the few apps it had pretty much sucked. NT 3.1 which I had at the same time was more useful, but was dog slow booting on the same hardware. Heck it was slow on the screaming fast Pentium 60 we had at work. (which was also installed off floppies... all ~40 of them).

Comment Re:It's "not just the about the money!" (Score 1) 297

The retail copies of windows (which are outrageously priced BTW) are licensed to move between machines in the way you describe. You may have to call MS but the license should be portable...

OTOH, I have a friends who say they have called MS and gotten them to reactivate OEM copies on replaced motherboards even though its not really allowed.

Comment Re:The problem is that landfills are too cheap (Score 1) 371

That, and most Americans are too fucking lazy to sort, or have any kind of care in avoiding contamination (or even learning what that means).

Why the fuck should I have to waste my $100/hour time to sort some goddamn garbage when the city can hire someone for $10/hour to do it?

So get off your high horse about the recycling BS, and charge me another $50 a month or something for trash collection and sort it all manually. I'm totally of the opinion that things that can be reused be removed from the waste stream. I'm just not in favor of trying to educate a million people sufficiently that they don't make mistakes and wasting peoples time doing things that are much better handled by specialists and machines.

Comment No word if companies can still pull products.. (Score 1) 116

With bad reviews, and then recreate them as clean products without any reviews. I've had this happen to a couple products I wrote bad reviews for. Polar in particular released the RC3 a couple years ago, and there were a ton of bad reviews about broken chest straps, broken buttons, GPS's that wouldn't lock up, etc.. Good luck finding any of those reviews, they changed the SKU (or something) a couple years back and all the old bad reviews (which were close to a 1 start rating) are no longer applied to the product. My review is still in my profile, but it links to a product which is "no longer available" even though you can find the RC3 still for sale on amazon.

Comment Re:there's no subscription in the sense you think. (Score 2) 277

Probably not what you mean, but and then after 90 days use the slmgr rearm trick.

I'm not sure about 8.1 enterprise but other versions have allowed this trick 3 time, then you boot from a disk, clear some registry keys and start the whole process over again. Or ignore the "your windows isn't genuine" if you use one of the OEM keys you can find via google.

Comment Re: Good news (Score 1) 391

licensed to operate on the public roadways, not on a race track

Or a farm, where a lot of work trucks/tractors live their whole lives. In fact where I live you can probably get away with driving a truck down the road from one plot to another just with a slow moving vehicle sign, some flashing lights and a headlight (the requirement for "farm equipment on the road").

Comment Re:This whole make your own gun is like the homebr (Score 1) 391

Well uranium can be mined in a lot of places where people live. There are places in the US where simply walking outside and picking up a couple rocks will net you a few ppm of uranium. Finding abandoned mines and picking up some of the tailing will often net a pretty decent concentration.

I only point this out because getting a decent purity of uranium from rocks is probably the least of your problem if you need a particular isotope.

Comment This whole make your own gun is like the homebrew (Score 4, Insightful) 391

The whole discussion about making your own guns, sort of reminds me of the day I realized how easy it was to make beer. So easy that any 14 year old can walk into any random supermarket and buy everything they need to make a couple gallons of beer for less than it costs to actually buy the beer (as it should be!).

So all these prohibitions against selling alcohol to people under 21 are all pretty pointless, even kids without friends older than 21 can get their hands on unlimited supplies of the stuff with just a little thought and effort.

So the latest hopla about making guns is sort of a resurgence of the zip gun culture. Only the results are probably more accurate on the whole.

Comment Re:Really? (Score 1) 225

Uh, sort of a bad example. The old control over every portion of the window decoration from the appearance tab on the display properties dialog got gimped with windows 8 (or was it 7). MS still lets you change the color, but all the fine grained controls a gone.

There are a number of howto's about creating a "classic" windows theme for 8, but its just not the same. The result isn't classic mode anymore than the win98 mode in kde looks anything at all like windows98.

Comment Re:You know what would REALLY motivate kids? (Score 1) 208

Except that Civil Engineering is licensed by each individual state. There is also the requirement that in order to get a PE you have to have a certain number of years of experience under a PE that will sign off on it. Plus, there are basic competency tests required, and continuing education requirements.

That is why my wife who has a PE in CE doesn't work with any H1B's while I do. She does work with a number of permanent residents, but most of them moved here, went to school here, and got their PE's after working in the field here for a few years.

Plus, the requirement that nearly any project of significance have a PE sign off on it, keeps the field vibrant.

Comment Content companies? (Score 1) 244

Well, besides all the other listed problems with moving into the TV market. I'm sure apple had two major roadblocks for a uber high res TV. The question of who would supply the glass, and who would supply the content probably were insurmountable. Its not like Samsung or LG were going to sign exclusive sales deals to only sell the panels to apple. Then there are the content providers who probably refused to provide custom content for apple devices fearing a repeat of the itunes situation where they became beholden to apple.

Computers are unreliable, but humans are even more unreliable. Any system which depends on human reliability is unreliable. -- Gilb