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Comment: Amazon is a scapegoat (Score 1) 315

by bubbl07 (#47011617) Attached to: You've Got Male: Amazon's Growth Impacting Seattle Dating Scene
This is symptomatic of the gender inequality of their hires and hiring for this sector in general. Instead of "blaming" Amazon, we should insist that all tech companies (including Amazon) support more education amongst the underrepresented genders, races, etc.

It's in their best long-term interests, anyway, since working for Amazon (for example) is now less attractive because it's now... less attractive literally. At some point the increase collective pay they'd have to offer will be greater than the amount they could use to fund these sorts of initiatives.
Hardware Hacking

+ - Major Linux hardware donor entangled in red tape->

Submitted by
christian.einfeldt
christian.einfeldt writes "James Burgett of the Alameda County Computer Resource Center in Berkeley, California, calls himself a "fat tattooed freak," but CNN has called him a hero for his efforts to get 16,000 Linux computers to those without a computer or the means to easily get one. But now, Boing Boing is reporting that James the hero is in danger of being fined out of existence due for storing parts for too long; or, more exactly, not being able to prove how long he has had been storing each and every item in his warehouse-sized inventory. O'Reilly Radar columnist Dale Dougherty suspects that it is an overzealous new inspector out to prove her cred. Meanwhile, James the hero, who is crusty and known for salty language, ain't taking to the shut-down kindly, and, for the first time ever (he says) is now asking for the open source community for help with publicity, logistics, and yes, cash."
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Operating Systems

+ - 30 things I've learned from using Linux ...->

Submitted by BBQ-buster
BBQ-buster (666) writes "ZDNet's Adrian Kingsley-Hughes has an interesting article called "30 things I've learned from using Linux ..." where a long-time Windows user discusses some of the things that he's learned from dabbling with Linux for a few months.

1. That I don't have to pay money to get my hands on a credible operating system.
2. There are far more Linux distros available that I have time to try them out.
3. Switching to Linux does not mean trouble-free computing.
4. Whenever you ask a Linux user which is the best distro, invariably the answer you'll get is the name of the distro that they're using.
5. In my opinion, the best Linux distro is Ubuntu.
6. No matter how much I like a GUI, and no matter how lazy years of using Windows made me, there's a lot to be said for using a command line.


Overall it's a very positive Linux article that should inspire others to give Linux a go."

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Software

+ - Review: Parallels Desktop vs. VMWare Fusion->

Submitted by nsayer
nsayer (86181) writes "A very, very long time ago, I used VMWare (before it was named VMWare Desktop) under the Linuxulator on FreeBSD to run Windows 2000 for the occasional windows-only application. But when MacOS X came out, I rather quickly bought a mac and have become an almost exclusive Mac user. But, as before, there would be an occasional need to run something that was Windows only, so I suffered with Virtual PC. When I upgraded to my first Intel mac, I switched over to Parallels Desktop, and, as before, have been using it to run the occasional Windows app under Windows XP. When I tried the first VMware Fusion public beta, all it did reliably was crash my machine, so I didn't really pay attention to VMWare after that. But suffice to say that I have used virtualization and/or emulation technology almost continuously since its inception.

Skip forward to a couple weeks ago and I heard about VMWare's pre-release special pricing offer for a copy of Fusion. This is the first point to bring up — the price of virtualization software has come way down. I believe that's in part to the competition that now exists in the space between Parallels and VMWare. And that's a very good thing. I don't remember what I paid originally for that first copy of VMWare so long ago, but I believe it was north of $150. I bought my copy of Fusion for $39. Vive le competition.

Both offerings have very similar feature sets. Both install special 'helper' software within your Windows guest operating system to facilitate things like video resizing (if you drag the Windows window larger or switch to full screen mode, both will resize the video area accordingly), mouse pointer sharing, drag and drop file copying, clock synchronization, etc. Both support some type of "undo" functionality that allows you to take a snapshot of the guest as it is now and at some future point revert back to the snapshot if something goes wrong. Both have a mechanism for running Windows programs in their own windows along side your mac apps (hiding the Windows desktop). Fusion calls this Unity, Parallels calls it Coherence. In those areas, it's pretty much a tie.

Both offer software that you can install on Windows either on a physical computer or on some other virtualized environment that will copy out the Windows installation and make a new virtual machine out of it. Here, I give Parallels a slight edge because the VMWare solution is actually hidden on their website and is actually designed for their enterprise products (but happens to work for Fusion). Also, since VMWare guests use ACPI and Parallels guests don't, you wind up with some virtual hardware quirks that require reinstalling Windows to completely clear up (Windows XP doesn't support switching from a standard PC to an ACPI PC without reinstalling. But you don't have to wipe the disk, you can just reinstall Windows itself, painful though that is). Since Windows tends to accumulate a lot of cruft in the registry anyway, a clean reinstall isn't a bad idea in any event. But if you have a lot of software that you don't want to have to put back on, you don't have to.

VMWare guests can run with both cores of your multi-core CPU (if applicable), Parallels guests are uniprocessor only. Unless the Windows software you use is heavily threaded, I'm not sure you'll notice too much difference there. Both systems seem to me to be responsive when dealing with typical interactive software.

Both systems support acceleration of 3D API calls, however my mac of choice is the Intel mac mini. VMWare doesn't support acceleration on the integrated Intel 950 chipset. I don't typically play 3D games, but I did try BZFlag under parallels when the 3D support was announced. I was able to get more or less the same frame rate as when I ran the native OS X BZFlag client. I haven't repeated this test with VMWare, however. If 3D games are your reason for booting Windows, then perhaps Parallels might be a better choice right now.

Both systems allow you to suspend the guest and resume it. In both cases, the normal Windows APM/ACPI suspend/hibernate functionality is avoided. Instead, the guest is simply halted in its tracks and upon resumption, the virtualization tools fix the clock and other sorts of things. VMWare's guest tools allow you to set up scripts that will run at suspend and resume time. But the big difference I've noticed is that when I resume a Parallels guest, the entire machine (both guest and host) seem to be mired in a tar pit for about a minute. From what I can tell, it's probably paging the guest in from a memory mapped file. But there is no indication of what it's doing or how long it will take. By contrast, when suspending or resuming a VMWare guest, there is a progress bar to let you know how much time is left, and when the resume process is done, the machine responds instantly at full speed. VMWare wins this one hands down.

One application I use under Windows is the Netflix WatchNow client. When you watch video in it under Parallels, you can often see tearing effects. Presumably these are caused by a lack of synchronization between the refresh rate of the host's monitor and the guest's virtual frame buffer. Whatever the cause, it can be quite annoying. But VMWare doesn't have that problem. Score another victory for them.

Another differentiation in behavior is when playing You Don't Know Jack: The Ride. Under parallels, this game has choppy, stuttery audio and often pauses for seemingly no reason. Under VMWare, it works perfectly. It's only an anecdote, and it's not a show-stopper for me, but it's nudge in VMWare's direction.

So in the end, I have to give the victory to Fusion. For a 1.0 product, it's more than just a strong contender, it's the clear victor. Can Parallels catch up? Sure, but given how long they've had a mac product, it's surprising that they need to."

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Businesses

+ - Open source to define the future, says Sun's CEO->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes ""We're in the second wave of the Internet. The companies that will win will be those that define this next phase. Open source will define it," says Sun's CEO, Jonathan Schwartz, in this interview during LinuxWorld. Sun's Schwartz repeatedly chastises the old guard of software for focusing on monetization of every software user, and instead suggests that adoption of free software today will result in tomorrow's great software businesses. While Schwartz suggests that the perfect business model has yet to be discovered for open source, he concludes, "[I]f you don't have adoption, it won't matter what business model you use. Companies that sell open source are prioritizing community and adoption over instant monetization. We will win.""
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Linux Business

+ - Major "Internal Reorganization" at Linspir

Submitted by Linspire Insider
Linspire Insider (905214) writes "Just two and a half weeks after the Deal with Microsoft, Linspire President and CEO Kevin Carmony was asked to clear out his locker on July 31st. And yesterday, August 2nd, several additional people were laid off or fired, or just quit, including most of the OS team and their only localization expert. In total, seven employees were lost, bringing the company roster down to around fifteen people. All this, despite the large influx of cash from their recent partnership, shows that Microsoft deal was useless to more than just users.

The near disbanding of the OS team is indicative of a major shift in the company's business model, now focusing almost entirely on their Click-N'-Run service."
Power

+ - How James Bond Attracts Women?-> 1

Submitted by Bachelor
Bachelor (666) writes "Ok, I know all of you have watched James Bond movies... I have always wondered to myself why he is so successful with women. 1. Body Language- notice bond never smiles when he shows expression he grins. His eye contact is always direct with women as well. 2. Unpredictable — you never know what Bond is gonna do... Girls love a guy they cant figure out..."
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Google

+ - Gmail accounts hacked - no response from Google->

Submitted by jared51
jared51 (71757) writes "A few friends have recently had their Gmail accounts hacked, causing immense life complications. With Gmail storing all information (many people have a handy label "Accounts" making life easier) that has ever been emailed, a hijacker can easily move on to eBay, PayPal and credit card accounts to turn the crime into cash. Making matters worse, Google is impossible to contact by human. Hijacked users must contend with an endless series of forms."
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Democrats

+ - Sheehan to Challenge Pelosi if no Impeachment->

Submitted by
mdsolar
mdsolar writes "Personable and determined Cindy Sheehan resigned from leadership in the anti-war movement in late May but is now active in an accountability movement which she says differs from her past activity. Speaker Pelosi has until July 23 to introduce Articles of Impeachment or she will face an indepenent run from Sheehan. Sheehan's son Casey was killed in the Iraq War which appears to be grinding to an end now. Sheehan set up camp outside the President's residence in Crawford, Texas asking to speak with him about Casey's death. With the President's continued refusal, a movement grew up around Camp Casey in Crawford which most recently has concentrated on the failure, so far, of democrats to carry out the mandate they won in Novermber of 2006. In Pelosi's district, a democrat got elected mayor by the skin of his teeth against a green opponent, so she may not have a safe seat. Articles of Impeachement have been introduced already for the VP with growing cosponsorship. Seems like Sheehan is telling Pelosi, either stop being Speaker by becoming President of stop being Speaker by losing your seat."
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Biotech

+ - Nicotine is the new wonder drug.->

Submitted by Fantastic Lad
Fantastic Lad (198284) writes "Smoking may be bad for you, but Researchers and biotech companies are quietly developing pharmaceuticals that are decidedly good for brains, bowels, blood vessels and even immune systems — and they're inspired by tobacco's active ingredient: nicotine. Nicotine acts on the acetylcholine receptors in the brain, stimulating and regulating the release of a slew of brain chemicals, including seratonin, dopamine and norepinephrine. Now drugs derived from nicotine and the research on nicotine receptors are in clinical trials for everything from helping to heal wounds, to depression, schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, Tourette Syndrome, ADHD, anger management and anxiety. Smoking will kill you, but also keep you in good health? Another story about nicotine warding off Parkison's disease here seems to agree. -Who knew?"
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The Internet

+ - New Web metric likely to hurt Google, help YouTube

Submitted by StonyandCher
StonyandCher (1121349) writes "In a nod to the success of emerging Web 2.0 technologies like AJAX and streaming media, one of the country's largest Internet benchmarking companies, Nielsen/NetRatings, will no longer use page views as its primary metric for comparing sites.

Nielsen/NetRatings will now begin using total time spent by users of a site as its primary measurement metric. This is likely to affect Google's ranking because while users visit the site often, they don't usually spend much time there.

"It is not that page views are irrelevant now, but they are a less accurate gauge of total site traffic and engagement," said Scott Ross, director of product marketing at Nielsen/NetRatings. "Total minutes is the most accurate gauge to compare between two sites. If [Web] 1.0 is full page refreshes for content, Web 2.0 is, 'How do I minimize page views and deliver content more seamlessly?'""
United States

Journal: Free Speech Wins in WA

Journal by pudge

The Washiington State Supreme Court ruled that radio talk show speech does not count as an in-kind political donation that requires reporting under public disclosure laws. Yay, they got something right. Unanimously, too.

I wish the ruling had been broader -- they only said the public disclosure was not required because there was a specific exemption for this type of speech in the statute* -- but it's something.

It is surely a great calamity for a human being to have no obsessions. - Robert Bly

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