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Comment: Re:Obligatory Discussions (Score 1) 132

by bluefoxlucid (#49346877) Attached to: GNOME 3.16 Released

Sometimes, to go forward, you go back. Thing is, the Program Manager was a modal dialogue containing all windows, and could be minimized; you selected program by opening windows containing icons of programs to select. The Gnome Shell eliminates that modal dialogue and moves the icons to an interface off to the side; the current desktop shrinks into the shell's entire display area, allowing you to move to another desktop containing other windows.

In short, windows are brought inside, rather than moved outside, the working space; nothing is behind the working space, but rather, the UI tools move behind the working space when not in use. Instead of icons of windows, Gnome Shell scales the windows down and displays them in a tiled fashion, providing a broad overview of the current working space.

This contrasts with earlier attempts in which the modal dialogue making up the working space was flattened into the background, creating the desktop. All elements of the modal dialogue were scattered around the screen as decoration, and minimized windows appeared in a task bar as titles rather than icons--just as useless when many windows were opened. The step following that was to make multiple working spaces in the same fashion. Gnome Shell has banished most of this, leaving a clock at the top of the screen, but little else to intrude on the use of the work space.

Comment: Re:Obligatory Discussions (Score 1) 132

by bluefoxlucid (#49345387) Attached to: GNOME 3.16 Released

I don't tap my screen; I remember what application I want, and go directly to it. Rather than Applications:Graphics:Krita, I just type "Kri" and click the Krita icon. I can also drag the Krita icon to a space between desktops, spawning the window there. I can also type "image" and have all the image viewing and editing software appear in front of me.

Rather than a single view of a hierarchical database of applications and operations, I have the ability to declare what I want and have it given to me in the same way that an SQL SELECT statement declares what data I want and how to organize it. This is an improvement, and it is what obsoleted the old Deskbar applet everyone was raving about when Beagle and Tracker were going head-to-head.

Comment: Re:Obligatory Discussions (Score 0, Flamebait) 132

by bluefoxlucid (#49344625) Attached to: GNOME 3.16 Released

I dunno, Gnome 2 and KDE feel like Windows 3.1 when you've used Gnome 3. A blunt desktop, some virtual desktops to move around, menus or start menus... the usual.

Then you pull out Gnome 3, and suddenly you can tap Winkey or point the mouse at the top left corner, and you get a view of all the windows on your current desktop. You can start typing "DVD burner" or "Images" or "Firefox", and it brings up Thoggin or Gimp or some Web browsers, that you then click on. You can drag your windows to other desktops; you can drag your windows between desktops to spawn new desktops. You have infinite desktops just by opening a window on the empty desktop at the end.

I hold complaints about Gnome 3's alt-tab behavior. Beyond that, it's thrown out all this navigation through bullshit menus and cluttered windows scattered across a dozen desktops in favor of straight out opening the applications you want and scanning through your open windows across all desktops. It gets out of your way and lets you use the computer, instead of fucking around with the UI.

Comment: Re:How is this new? (Score 2) 171

That won't happen. Ketchup is a non-newtonian fluid: its viscosity changes with shear force, and so it refuses to flow until adequate force is applied. That's why ketchup doesn't leave the bottle with gentle force, but spurts out when squeezed. It will retain its shape just fine until forced out.

Heinz will collapse as a company and be bought by Kraft or something stupid while Hunts goes on to advertise to housewives that they can get that last squirt with their bottle.

Comment: Re:Google wants a monopoly... (Score 1) 132

by swillden (#49332903) Attached to: Chinese CA Issues Certificates To Impersonate Google

Google is completely OK with sharing personal info with all governments

Not true, not in the slightest. Google has fought hard to minimize the information they have to give to governments, and to be as transparent as the law will allow about what they do give. Remember that Google created the transparency report, and was the company that managed to negotiate permission to share aggregated data about National Security Letters. Many other companies have followed suit, but Google led the way.

They have already been caught supplying users' data to the US government.

No, Google has been shown to comply with legal requirements, and to fight questionable requests in court. Snowden also revealed that the NSA was tapping Google's fiber. Google responded by encrypting the data on that fiber.

They make money on that as well because they charge the US government a fee for that service.

Cite? Since Google is a publicly-traded company, it should be easy to point to that line item in their SEC filings.

Stood up and achieved what? Get told by the Chinese government to STFU or GTFO?

No, told by the Chinese government to participate in government-mandated censorship or GFTO. Google participated for a while and then decided it wasn't what they ought to be doing, and so chose to GTFO of the biggest market on the planet (albeit one in which they had a small market share.

Comment: Operation Downfall (Score 1) 331

by Myria (#49332573) Attached to: Feds Attempt To Censor Parts of a New Book About the Hydrogen Bomb

The number killed was very approximately 100,000. It is plain that not even the majority could possibly have been military personnel.

Clearly. However, the most important thing is to compare the Bombs to the estimated casualties of Operation Downfall--a hell of a lot more Japanese people would have been killed by the Allied invasion.

Comment: Re:Sooo .. (Score 1) 127

except that polling it continuously will keep the device from going to sleep (have an impact on battery life).

It doesn't seem to have a significant impact, AFAICT. I haven't benchmarked with and without, but at leas on my Nexus 6 I didn't observe any obvious decrease in battery life when I turned it on.

Comment: Re:Sooo .. (Score 1) 127

I've been using this feature for a few months now (I work for Google) and I think on balance it significantly improves my security. It means that I can set my phone to lock instantly on display timeout, with a one-minute timeout, lock instantly on power button press, and use a long, complex password... and not be inconvenienced by having to constantly re-enter a long password. This is a security win, because if I did have to enter a long password two dozen times per day, I wouldn't do it; I'd choose a simpler password and settings that lock my device less aggressively. Even better, I find myself subtly encouraged by the phone to keep it in my pocket, rather than setting it down on tables, desks, etc., because if I put it down somewhere I'll have to re-enter my password.

If I were mugged, I'd just hit the power button as I remove the phone from my pocket. Actually, what I'd really like to do in that case is to power it down, but I'm not sure I could get away with that, since it requires holding the power button for a couple of seconds, then tapping the confirmation dialog. Since my phone is encrypted, getting it into a powered-down state makes my data quite secure. Not that the lockscreen is necessarily easy to bypass, but it's part of a large, complex system, which means there's a lot of attack surface. Once the device is powered down, the risk model is very simple and well-understood: If the attacker can't guess my password, he can't get at my data. Thanks to the hardware-backed encryption used in Lollipop, password guessing is rate-limited by the hardware to a level that would require, on average, about 70 years of continuous trials. Even if the attacker were that patient (a) nothing on my phone would be worth anything after a decade or so and (b) I doubt the device would last that long. Mobile devices aren't built to run flat out for years.

I've also used the bluetooth proximity Smart Lock, paired to a smartwatch, but I've decided I like the "Trusted behavior" feature better, so I've stopped trusting proximity to my watch. The range on bluetooth is large enough that I can set my phone down and be far enough away that someone could use it but still within range for keeping unlocked. Plus, I really like the encouragement to keep the device on my body. In the long run, that user training will, I think, do more for my device security than anything else.

I do still use bluetooth, but paired to my car's bluetooth, so I can put the phone in a cradle or on the center console and have it stay unlocked. I also set the phone to trust proximity to the bluetooth headset I use when cycling, because I put the phone in a cradle mounted on the handlebars and want it to stay unlocked as I use it to track my ride.

The discussion on this thread about phones being snatched from hands, though, makes me think that perhaps I should re-enable trust of my smartwatch. That would address high-speed theft pretty well. I just tested and taking the phone out of range of my smartwatch does lock the phone, even if it's in my pocket. So a thief couldn't just grab it from my hands and drop it in their pocket to keep it unlocked.

However, this means I lose the on-body self-training. I suppose if I turn the smartwatch linkage on only when I'm outside my home or office, I'd get the on-body training most of the time but the smartwatch linkage all of the rest. Hmm... I wonder if I can create a Tasker profile to automate that...

Comment: Re:Every good deed (Score 1) 149

by bluefoxlucid (#49320909) Attached to: Obama To Announce $240M In New Pledges For STEM Education

Without public funding and guaranteed loans to get people into college: Gotta hire a good, hard-working entrant, train them, educate them, move them up.

With public funding and guaranteed loans to get people into college: Cash crop of cheap labor. Lots of risk on individuals (waste 4 years without job on education, possibly get oversupplied degree), the poor are least able to handle this risk, followed closely by the disenfranchised (anyone often passed over in the local culture, e.g. blacks or women).

Tax-funded college and government-guaranteed student loans benefit hiring businesses at the expense of the individual. This is hard to grasp because it looks like money and education and other tangible goods are being handed to the individual, while the market effects are more abstract and difficult to understand without having a huge amount of knowledge in the area.

Comment: Re:It has an acronym , so it will fail. (Score 2) 149

by bluefoxlucid (#49320789) Attached to: Obama To Announce $240M In New Pledges For STEM Education

This does very little to put us on a footing for a post-scarcity society. And we are assuredly on that path right now

No we're not. We have to solve the energy crisis first. That requires a dyson sphere, which will provide 13,000 trillion times the energy we use today.

Molybdenum and Cesium are so rare we make them using inefficient, energy-heavy nuclear fusion. We have the ability to literally turn lead into gold, or dog shit into gold, or gold into platinum, or piss into Strontium-90; it's really fucking expensive, more expensive than just mining a brick of gold, so we don't. It's expensive because of the massive amount of energy required.

With thousands of trillions of times the energy available, we could turn anything into anything else. Automation would be a drop in the bucket: those machines are powered by a minimal amount of energy, but they'd be built with material we made dumping in billion of times as much energy to just turn sand into steel. We'd mine asteroids by turning base materials into fuel oils and hydrogen gas, then converting garbage silica rock and other bullshit that's not nickel-iron into nickel-iron, or oil, or gold, or palladium; we wouldn't need to find a high-ore-content rock to bring down.

That's post-scarcity. So much automated, so much that can just be done by magic, we don't need people doing anything. We'd have multi-level structures running hydroponic gardens for farms, rather than large swaths of arable land; it would take immense amounts of energy and material, but all that would be a drop in the bucket compared to the full power of the sun itself.

If you can't understand it, it is intuitively obvious.