Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:This is really about controling the internet (Score 1) 571

Yes and no, sir. You are correct in implicitly stating that the internet would have to BE controlled in order for the death of trolls to occur. As many have previously ruminated, the very essence of anonymity grants trolls the ability to be trolls safely, and with no consequences. The article predicts the Inevitable Death of Trolls because the american society has already put to death similar grievances (or attempted to), such as sexual harassment in the workplace. However, the article does not theorize HOW we could put an end to trolls. I believe, as science fiction has put forth (Ender's Game is a good example) that a citizen's net, without anonymity, or with tiered anonymity tied to the granting and restriction of powers, is the only way.

I also believe that it will never happen, because we don't want to allow that degree of restriction on our freedoms. I also don't hold that any such control is constitutional, at least in America.

Comment Re:It removes all barrier to entry (Score 1) 597

I was unaware of the system being in place in Australia. If practical, it sounds very good. But some of the downfalls you mention are worth bringing to the discussion table.

"When people sign up they put down their preferences for which uni to attend and the universities start at the top of the pecking order (best grades) and work their way down till their quota is finished."

This, in particular, I have a problem with. I understand it is a practical solution to the problem of too many applicants that I mentioned. But right now in the US, you can choose where you want to go, if you can pay. I understand that many universities do limit their attendance regardless of money factors (i.e. Harvard), but many others do not.

I see so many complications inherent with choosing this path, and whether the outcomes are good or bad is hard to say without careful consideration. Our schools have struggled for a long time with good standards of testing. How do you prove the merit of students? You test the crap out of them. Does this work? NO. My brother is a teacher. Perhaps the Aussies have figured out a way around this issue. But I don't like the federal government dictating how education should work. It isn't working, and more is not the solution.

Comment It removes all barrier to entry (Score 1) 597

I have to point out that this is program would remove all barrier to college entry. If there is no cost to start education, and not finish it, then there will be millions of people who do so. Think of the problem we have now of so many students not knowing what they want out of life just joining college. I do agree that the current system of student loans is badly broken. I have many friends who bear an unreasonable level of debt.

Comment The more things change... (Score 1) 429

The world is not changing as much as you think. I am 28, and priviledged to have worked in several corporate environments. In a workplace that has 4 generations of employees, you have much bigger headaches, such as dealing with different generational value systems. Leave your area of knowledge and you will quickly find you are not "old school". Most of the world is not even technology-based. Leave the country and serve humanitarian efforts in Honduras or Haiti (I've been to the Philippines myself). Study different cultures. Actually, people do not tend to throw things away in favor of the new and different - quite the opposite. Culture is the basis of humanity, and cultural heritage is not new, and you'd better not throw it away. Our generation and those younger still are growing up hungry to culture, hungry for those things that are so carelessly thrown away because we listen to television instead of our grandparents.

Comment Throwing money away (Score 1) 204

Listen... why are we going backwards in reusability? I saw that this product was highlighed at CES a short time ago, and laughed at it. Why spend $300 for a product in order to buy $10 ONE-TIME-USE cartridges over a 11000mah portable battery pack for $40 that has the same power output but can be re-used? How is this an advancement in technology?

Comment We can't predict the future. (Score 1) 736

I may be rehashing what most posters here have already pointed out in different ways, but it comes down to the fact that we can't predict the future. PCs in general allow arbitrarily defined operations to happen (copy a folder from A to B, with unpredictable contents, hardware timings, available operating system resources, etc). Added to this problem is one of interpretation: what KIND of progress does the bar measure? Is it time, disk space, ordered task number, or what? All of the above?

Suppose I make a progress bar that measures the time until nuclear winter? We call that the Doomsday clock (and yes, progress bars CAN go backwards, my fellow slashdotters). Is it accurate? No one knows, and I hope we never find out.

But lets say that we only want a progress bar that measures time to completion. I actually like the file-copy progress bars in Windows 7. I think they finally got it right. The underlying hardware will vary in its speed, so the progress bar cannot inerrantly give estimated time to completion. But it does give enough information to satisfy me while I wait. I see the current MB/s of data transfer, the approximate time remaining (and data remaining), and a bar that shows how much of the data has been moved so far compared to the total amount of data to move. Not perfect by any means, but I am satisfied to wait. And that's the whole reason you have a progress bar in the first place.

Comment Re:Simply put... No. (Score 1) 589

You're right, the nukes weren't developed for Mutually Assured Destruction. However, they were developed as a deterrant against further war, which is very close to the same thing. By dropping one bomb, we sent a message that technology had now made war a terrible, terrible thing to behold. By dropping two bombs, we sent the message that we had the ability to keep going. The war ended in fact because the nuclear warheads had successfuly deterred futher bloodshed.

I am not sure what the Germans intended to do with the nuclear bombs they were developing. Perhaps they too would have served more as a deterrent / threat than an actual tactical option.

Comment Re:The Evolution of Paleontology (Score 2) 208

That's a chicken and egg problem. If the early paleontologists had never recovered their specimens, Mr. Jack Horner would never have been inspired to spend his life studying old bones. Likewise, if today's paleontologists didn't recover their specimens, then the future "perfected" paleontological methods would never come to be.

Comment Re:This doesn't make sense to me (Score 1) 151

Several people, including you, have replied to my comment, but no one has addressed my question. So perhaps I wasn't understood. I know that a sneakernet implies physical transfer of data (a Boeing 747 filled with Blu-Ray discs traveling from New York to LA has a bandwidth of 245000 gbit according to Wikipedia). What what exactly is a sneakernet FILE SYSTEM. And why would you have one? I sneakernet data over thumb drives all the time. I only need a file system designed for the thumbdrive, such as NTFS.

Actually, a thought occurs to me. The article described this sneakernet as capable of Terabyte-sized file transfers. When using a 8GB thumb drive, you must use NTFS rather than VFAT in order to transfer a 4GB + file. More importantly, a 8GB thumbdrive cannot transfer a TB file without first splitting and rejoining the file on both ends. Is this what the ExFAT file system does? Automatically handly file facturing across arbitrary media?

Comment This doesn't make sense to me (Score 2) 151

A file system is normally designed for one's own usages. A file system is entirely contained within your computer system (or in the event of a distributed file system, within computers under your control). What use then is "sneaker-netting" files between Windows, OSX, and Linux? Isn't this a network concept?

Comment Re:how about REMOVING ARBITRARY PASSWORD LIMITS! (Score 1) 480

Good point sir. Yes, length is superior to variety. And Salting passwords may make some of this conversation irrelevant anyway.

However, you are only addressing brute-force techniques. A simple, human-contructed password of any given length is quite easy to crack using predictive methods (dictionaries, phonics, substitutions, etc). Predictive password techniques are poor at random large-keyspace passwords. Against a predictive password cracker, you would be better using a shorter, 95-key space password.

However, rainbow tables exist for most short password lengths. Rather than having to actually crack your password, if it is short enough (say 7-9 characters), one can simply look up the hash in a table to find the cracked password. Clearly, short passwords of ANY complexity are still vulnerable.

Slashdot Top Deals

The universe is an island, surrounded by whatever it is that surrounds universes.