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Comment Re:Ask Comcast? That's rich (Score 1) 349

Connectivity issues and network lag for streaming, plus, modem wasn't getting any response from upstream servers, and was logging errors because of it. Tech wanted to send someone to the house to "do an update". I had to tell her that DOCSIS modem updates cannot be applied by end users and must be pushed down the network, from their end, so I wasn't going to take a day off work and pay a tech for a home visit when it wouldn't help the issue. Plus, it's my damn modem, not theirs. Tech was (a) shocked that I owned the modem - she didn't think we could do that - and (b) was unfamiliar with Roku, Netflix, and at least three other very common streaming devices/services. Plus she's telling me that network congestion was the problem with my streaming, as I was looking at the bandwidth test telling me the connection was wide open. This was just before Netflix blinked and paid Comcast for better speed. The company was flat denying any traffic shaping was occurring. Gee weird it works better all of a sudden.

Comment Ask Comcast? That's rich (Score 3, Insightful) 349

Last time I had to talk to anyone in the company I had to explain to the tech how DOCSIS modems worked. You will never get an individual from that company on the phone who knows enough to give you a real answer. Turnover is too high in call centers, and people who know the answer are not on support phone detail.

Comment Re: Long live openwrt (Score 1) 241

My WRT54G is a Rev. 1 model. Tomato, running strong. I use it as a secondary these days, with an Asus RT-N16 as primary (for gigabit throughput on the LAN). Also have a Rev. 4 set up, currently using it as an emergency backup should either of the others crap out on me.

The Rev 1 was picked up for $1 at a yard sale, the Rev 4 was a freebie from a friend. Never underestimate the possibilities older hardware can offer if you know how to dump the stock firmware.

Comment Well... (Score 5, Insightful) 547

The only possible way to survive is to develop a niche. Streaming services are usually pretty good for recent movies, but a lot of back catalogue stuff is hard to find. Specialize in the stuff that's out of print, rare, etc. But really, I'm hard-pressed to see how that business model would be sustainable as a primary income source in most communities. There simply isn't enough demand for the content, especially given the huge amount of material available through Netflix's mail catalogue.

Comment Re:Only if you've had your brain injected... (Score 1) 77

Biggest issue with the technique right now is selective targeting. To do it you need to know the promoter sequence for a gene of interest, and it has to be small enough to be packaged into the viral vector along with the channelrhodopsin (to activate neurons) or halorhodopsin (to inactivate neurons, responds to yellow rather than blue wavelengths). For many genes the promoters are either not well characterized or too big, which is why so much of the current work in optogenetics is being done in mice - we have the genome mapped out and can easily generate transgenics to avoid the use of viral approaches. I really wish we could do this in rats as easily as in mice. My entire lab is having to switch over from rats to mice for some planned studies and grants, because the tools just aren't as mature in rats. And it's expensive as hell to get up and running... And mice are cheaper than rats. (Lasers are expensive too... Our lab is going with the LEDs, but the original work was all lasers.)

About a year ago I did the trip to Stanford to see how this is done... I mean, seriously people. Have you ever actually SEEN a mouse with laser beams shooting into its head? It's what we always expected science would look like when we were kids.

Comment Re:OfficeMetro and WinMetro can DIAF (Score 1) 711

I work in a US government facility. Today I got a message telling us we need to take some training for the upcoming transition to Windows 7 and Office 2010. We've been stuck on WinXP / IE7 forever precisely because they were scared of Vista, and that delayed the move to 7. I've already been told that they have zero interest in implementing Windows 8. By the time our IT people upgrade again, MS will be releasing Office 16.

Comment Re:Lol (Score 1) 711

Yet LaTeX persists because people in academia find that it fits their needs better.

People in certain fields of academia. I've worked with people in a lot of academic research fields - statistics, Alzheimer's research, behavioral neuroscience, energy expenditure, circadian biology, food science, etc. I've been employed at three major research universities and a government research facility. I haven't ever worked with anyone who used LaTeX. 99% use Word; the single exception I can think of prefers Pages. My colleagues include people who spend half their time in SPSS or R, and I do a reasonable amount of scripting to automate data file processing, but nobody I know has bothered with LaTeX. Comp sci and engineering folks might use LaTeX. But even leaving out social sciences, "academia" encompasses a whole lot more than comp sci and engineering. If you want to collaborate with anyone outside of the limited circle who use LaTeX, you're going to be using Word, or dealing with those who do.

Comment Re:So many bitter slashdot readers (Score 1) 82

Also, as an aside, there are plenty of "better" development boards available than the Raspberry Pi. Take, for example, the ODROID-X (http://www.hardkernel.com/renewal_2011/products/prdt_info.php?g_code=G133999328931), which comes with a 1.4 GHz quad-core ARM Cortex-A9, a quad-core ARM Mali-400 GPU, 1 GB of LP-DDR2 RAM, and much more, all for $129 USD.

Yeah, but I only spent $35. Tell me how to convince my wife it's worth spending another hundred bucks for a tiny computer I can play around with... Not going to happen. But for $35, she doesn't care. My order is actually shipping right now. The point was to create something nearly anyone could afford and toy with. They did it, hence the interest.

Nobody said computers were going to be polite.