dgatwood may be over-paranoid, but Lithium Ion batteries aren't to be messed with unless you enjoy dealing with thermal runaway.
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Does Google give businesses the ability to test updates and do a controlled rollout of patches for Chrome? Based on a cursory search of the web the answer seems to be "No", but I could be wrong...
Updates happen always and automatically even if the user doesn't have Administrative privileges.
As a vehement non-smoker I think everybody should take these breaks.
Didn't see this mentioned, but at least in my area the retailers I've been to are rationing drives:
Fry's is limiting purchases to one drive per person, with prices that are higher but don't seem completely unreasonable.
A local company that used to be known as "Hard Drives Northwest" has a sign at the entrance that they aren't selling individual drives at this time, as they're reserving them for purchase of an entire system.
Given the circumstances this seems reasonable, and I'm even happy the market seems to be responding responsibly.
A bit off topic, but something that may have broad interest... I'm not at all a hard-core gamer, but gleefully recall being a little kid playing F/A-18 Interceptor and messing around: learning to land on the carrier, and going off-mission to shoot at buildings and do tricks like fly under and around the Golden Gate bridge.
I would love an Oblivion-style open world game where you fly various modern planes and fighter jets and can go off the primary mission to tackle side quests or just mess around. Even better if it's on Earth with some reasonable combination of 3D geometry and satellite imagery.
It would also be nice for the capabilities of the planes and fighter jets to resemble their real-world counterparts, but I care 0% about having the act of flying the plane itself be anything like the real world; simple game-like controls would be fine. Oh, and while I'm at it, ideally it's a modern game with good graphics.
Does anything like this exist? I've played various demos of flying-related games on my PC and XBox 360 and nothing has really clicked.
IETF also has items like RFC1149: A Standard for the Transmission of IP Datagrams on Avian Carriers
In other words, there is no filter; it seems anyone can submit anything to the IETF. My main concern over the WebM "specification" is best summarized by by the great analysis at http://x264dev.multimedia.cx/archives/377:
But first, a comment on the spec itself.
The spec consists largely of C code copy-pasted from the VP8 source code -- up to and including TODOs, "optimizations", and even C-specific hacks, such as workarounds for the undefined behavior of signed right shift on negative numbers. In many places it is simply outright opaque. Copy-pasted C code is not a spec. I may have complained about the H.264 spec being overly verbose, but at least it's precise. The VP8 spec, by comparison, is imprecise, unclear, and overly short, leaving many portions of the format very vaguely explained. Some parts even explicitly refuse to fully explain a particular feature, pointing to highly-optimized, nigh-impossible-to-understand reference code for an explanation. There's no way in hell anyone could write a decoder solely with this spec alone.
In other words, there is no real spec that could stand up to ISO-type scrutiny, ignoring all politics. They are attempting to make standard a specific implementation, with all its current quirks and flaws, and from what I've read it is now set in stone; even though they are posting an RFC (request for comments) they will not be changing the spec to address the known flaws.
How is this good for anybody but Google?
No, it is not my preference that companies can do this. But at the same time I recognize that many of the web sites I visit on a regular basis need to make money somehow, even if they're only trying to cover the cost of their bandwidth.
Also, like I said, I'd rather see these kinds of ads than the horrible flashy blinky mortgage and weight loss scams and whatever else I seem to initially encounter on a "clean" machine.
Lately I've been pleased by the ads I get on most sites. After having recently shopped for a luxury car I got almost nothing but BMW, Infinti, Acura, etc. ads for months. None of which were intrusive. This Christmas I did some online shopping for some pajamas for the GF at Victoria's Secret and lo and behold now I'm greeted with Victoria's Secret models on a number of sites. Not only can I live with that, I can proclaim complete innocence when she's looking over my shoulder.
I even clicked through on a couple of the car ones while I was making up my mind, and afterwards as a bit of a reward for sites that host decent non-intrusive ads.
Therefore, I'm planning on making an eBook reader just to name it a McBook*. If enough heavyweight lawyers at McDonalds, Facebook, and Apple descend on me they may collapse into a black hole.
* Pronounced "em cee book" of course.
At least for some of us, it's not just basic arithemetic but having to spend tons of hours tracking down information that *could* be readily provided but, for some bizzare reason isn't. For example, have you ever had to deal with a ESPP in a company? Here's an example:
Fidelity will try to keep track of your wash sales and adjust the basis of your future sales accordingly. Unfortunately, that makes the record-keeping almost impossible. Firstly, adjusting the BASIS doesn't just change the basis price, it also changes the "effective" DATE of the purchase. So when you go to sell that March 31st stock, may get statements from Fidelity showing that you sold stock bought on "12/31/2009w" -- it's really your 3/31 stock but the basis has been adjusted due to your wash sale on April 5th. This can get extraordinarily confusing, because it means that neither the BASIS price nor purchase DATE for this set of shares corresponds to what was actually sold.
And that's a freakin' disaster, because as mentioned 3 sections ago, Fidelity fails to properly adjust the BASIS price of shares ESPP sales, meaning that you have to do it yourself. But since Fidelity has already "helpfully" changed the BASIS price and DATE to account for the WASH SALE, it can be virtually impossible to figure out WHICH shares were actually sold, meaning it's virtually impossible for you to properly adjust the BASIS to take into account the ORDINARY INCOME you recognized.
Oh, and keep in mind that the change of the BASIS DATE means that your later sale may be changed from a SHORT-TERM transaction to a LONG-TERM transaction. Confusing.
Oh, and keep in mind that because you often will be buying and selling different-sized blocks of shares, a given sale will likely be split up into multiple transactions, each tracking a different wash sale.
I agree that a basic 1040 is easy, but there are tons of gotchas out there due to not only the legal complexity but also how your company and/or broker does their bookkeeping. Reverse solving to uncover lost data is a huge pain, especially if you're like some of us who opt-out of paper statements. Some of the critical information you need to know is just gone.
Of course, if you're one of those people who keeps a dozen filing cabinets and spends 30 minutes a day doing personal finance and bookkeeping, sure it's trivial. Most people aren't like that and shouldn't be required to be like that.
So, would you be happy with a License to Tinker that doesn't allow an arbitrary company to legally take advantage of the R&D efforts of the people who created the product (software and/or hardware), but would still keep it fully open for your tinkering?
This wouldn't necessarily replace OSS software; there's nothing wrong with people deciding to release their work under the GPL or any other license. However, it does concern me when people think that all software MUST be released under such a license because this allows other companies to get a free ride (as in my Asus example) and profit off the original creators work. This also implies that the R&D process has no value, but the manufacturing process somehow does. I believe the net effect would be to discourage the creation process, leading to stagnation and exclusively promoting annoying business models such as ad-driven software.
* - The pedant who mentions that copyright violation is not a criminal act is an example of said person.