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User Journal

Journal: Windows 8.1 is a great tablet operating system and is better than Android 6

Journal by squiggleslash

Unfortunately third party support for it sucks. It's the AmigaOS of tablet operating systems, kinda sorta. Hey, Microsoft, have you heard of this new, 30 year old, technology called MVC? Developers love it, and it makes it relatively easy to produce frameworks that allow completely different user interfaces that use entirely different paradigms to be targeted by the same application. There's another company that makes both desktop and tablet operating systems (ironically, currently not merged though apparently from the same code base) that supports MVC quite heavily. Can't remember their name though...

It'd be nice for a FOSS equivalent of the "Tablet + Desktop" system Microsoft is doing, vs "Let's try to create a merged interface that sucks" approach of Ubuntu and GNOME. I would have been very happy with a Ubuntu for Android system, but Ubuntu and Google never seemed to go anywhere with that one.

User Journal

Journal: Controversy 8

Journal by squiggleslash

So...

systemd - think it's a good idea. init sucks. init scripts suck. I mean, have you ever written one? Something that uses cgroups to track and manage daemons seems an unbelievably great idea.

Slashdot Beta - For as long as I can remember, Slashdot's commenting system has been broken. Now they're trying to fix it. Not perfect, but seems in line with what others are doing successfully. If they can get it feature complete, it'll definitely be an improvement.

xfinitywifi - What a great idea! Comcast, you guys need to provide those of us who don't rent your routers with a free box that, without interrupting our networks, provides an xfinitywifi connection. Costs nothing, provides a huge amount of roaming Wifi coverage, it's a great idea.

Eich? He was a dick. People had concerns about his ability to work with a diverse group, his response was to insult everyone with concerns rather than address them. He was not CEO material.

Pax Dickinson? Honestly, I think he was stitched up and shouldn't have been fired/pushed/whatever. Buuuttt.... he's now associating himself with GG, so screw him.

Not trolling (mostly) but I do seem to be at odds with most of Slashdot these days.

User Journal

Journal: Saints Row 4

Journal by squiggleslash

Really enjoying it. I got it for $15 on Steam a few days ago, a day or two before they dropped the price to $5. Yeah. $5. *sigh* Well $15 was a good price.

Anyway, if you liked 3 (loved it myself), you'll almost certainly like 4. However there's some controversy over SR1/2 and SR3, as the game changed significantly between 2 and 3. My friend who doesn't care for 3 for that reason still loves 4, so read into that whatever you want.

What is it? Well, it's a big open-world thing. SR3 was a "take over the city from hostile gangs" thing that was incredibly over the top and funny. SR4... many of the same concepts, but you're now in a simulation of a city, and you're also the President, but still a gang leader, but you have superpowers, and it's still over the top and hilarious. There's a lot of references to other games/media and there's some meta stuff in there too. I thought on reading the synopsis that it wouldn't work, but it really does. Said friend who doesn't like SR3 described it as the best superhero game out there.

Probably worth playing SR3 before SR4, but otherwise a big thumbs up.

User Journal

Journal: Ferguson 2 4

Journal by RailGunner
So I'm seeing a bunch of wailing and caterwauling from the Left about how the riots hurt minority owned businesses...

Hey liberals -- why do you care? According to you: they didn't build that, someone else made that happen.
User Journal

Journal: Ferguson 38

Journal by RailGunner
Told You So

And then I went further.

Now I'm going to tell you the rest:

The protests are nothing more than an attempt at a Reichstag fire, an effort to give Chairman Zero reason to declare martial law - for "social justice" (which of course, is not justice).

Any question of whether Chairman Zero was on the side of justice or mob rule was answered last night during his press conference. His body language and visible anger spoke volumes. He is on the side of the unruly howling mob (but, if you've been paying attention, you knew that already.)

Justice for Michael Brown?

He strongarm robbed a convenience store then assaulted a police officer. It's really a shame he wasn't able to survive his wounds, justice for him would have been 10 years in prison.
User Journal

Journal: The GamerGate aftermath: the positives 6

Journal by squiggleslash

Must be miserable being a female gamedev right now, but I think there are genuinely some long term positives that may come out of this - none of which, I admit, are as positive as what might have happened if a powerful minority of men weren't complete bastards.

1. Men know it's happening now.

Call it projection, call it being blind to the obvious, but if anyone had come to me in August and told me how a sizable proportion of men absolutely hate women with a passion, with the abuse being entirely one-way, I would have nodded but not understood, because I like to think there's good in everyone. I would have poo-poo'd the more extreme examples of "one or two bad apples". Now I understand. Reading prominent GamerGate figureheads writing articles like "How to rape a woman and get away with it" or "How to break a woman" (no direct links but more information on this anti-misogyny site: http://wehuntedthemammoth.com/) is eye opening for those of us sheltered behind a general assumption of human decency in most people, even the ones we see as sexist. Yes, I've worked with at least one obviously sexist co-worker. No, I thought this was just mommy issues and that the guy was OK underneath. I don't think I'd treat him the same way now.

I had no idea the situation was this bad. I had no idea such evil attracted support from such a large and diverse group of people. I know better now. I have some idea of what to say to my daughter - when she's a little older, obviously - to ensure she can defend herself when the time comes. I know what to look out for from colleagues and "friends." I know what to tell friends who deny that the situation exists.

2. More women are speaking up, and being heard

GamerGate isn't happening because misogynists are slut-shaming a female gamedev who produced a game that wasn't to their liking, it's happening because women - and men - are rallying behind her. The superficial "Actually it's about ethics in gaming journalism" trope exists because those who attempted to intimidate said gamedev out of gaming found themselves the target of an overwhelmingly negative press, with large numbers of developers and other people in the gaming industry, especially women, standing up and saying stop.

It would be nice to go further and claim that this is universal, that women are exclusively looking at GamerGate as a chance to stand up and be heard, but alas, Zoe Quinn, Brianna Wu, and others are reporting that they're talking to many women devs who have headed in the other direction, seeing GamerGate as a reason to want out and to leave. This is terrible.

3. Related issues are receiving more attention.

That video with the women being cat-called, followed, and generally harassed, while walking through New York? Would that really have gone viral in a different environment?

Meanwhile, I wonder how many men have actually sat down and forced themselves to watch Anita Sarkeesian's videos on tropes in video games (caution: part six is actually fairly hard to watch), simply because of the controversy over the last few months? I know I did. It's hard to believe more coverage of this kind of constructive, concrete, criticism cannot lead to both less sexism in video games, and stronger, more original, video games in future.

4. Final thought

I'm not saying GamerGate is good or has been positive. It hasn't. We can choose to build in the ashes, or we can get angry about the loss of the city we once had. Or we can do both. I think I'm feeling both right now.

User Journal

Journal: On posting anonymously 14

Journal by squiggleslash

...as opposed to pseudonymously.

I'm finding it easier to post 100% honestly when I post AC on at least one subject at the moment. Why? Well, because if I post pseudonymously then I risk inflaming the wrath of an extremely nutty group, and I really don't have the time or patience or stomach for the kind of harassment I'd expect if I piss that group off.

I say this because it's a counterpoint to some of the stuff that's been said recently, especially in response to, for example, GamerGate and related Tech Sexism controversies, where many are of the opinion that anonymity has little value, encouraging the lowest forms of life to crawl out and make terrible attacks (such as death threats) without fearing the repercussions.

I have some sympathy with the position, but I also think linking identities to comments can severely limit people's ability to comment on things that genuinely bother them when there's a degree of mob like behavior by some on the opposing side of the issue in question.

Accountability is a force of moderation, but accountability cannot be the only means by which commentary is moderated, merely a significant but not insurmountable factor.

Update: This seems relevant ;-)

User Journal

Journal: [Beloved] It Is Not a Word 2

Journal by johndiii
It is not a word spoken,
Few words are said;
Nor even a look of the eyes
Nor a bend of the head,

But only a hush of the heart
That has too much to keep,
Only memories waking
That sleep so light a sleep.

-- Sara Teasdale

I remember.
GNU is Not Unix

Journal: systemd 1

Journal by squiggleslash

Having read up on it, I don't think systemd is a bad idea. I rather like:

1. Doing away with shell scripts with huge amounts of redundant, and frequently badly written, garbage to manage starting and stopping system services.
2. Using cgroups to properly isolate, contain, and track system services.
3. Centralizing the services concept so it's network aware, rather than a separate inetd server

The major criticisms seem to be "I don't like change/I understand shell scripts" (well, true to a certain extent, but I don't think the current situation was particularly good), XML configuration (reportedly, having seen it, but yeah, XML sucks), and the developers are rude, arrogant, and assholish, which I assume means that the critics are also boycotting Linux and half a dozen other FOSS projects...

I think criticisms 1 and 2 are valid concerns and are essentially the same concern expressed twice. My belief is that there's much to be said for making configuration files as simple as possible, and to avoid manual configuration where possible. Hopefully that's what the systemd developers believe too.

User Journal

Journal: Aiming, Trigger Control, and Ferguson 4

Journal by RailGunner
When you're at the range, and you line up your shot to center mass, and you pull the trigger, where you miss is indicative of what you're doing wrong -- if it's consistent. (Some short barrel concealed carry guns are not accurate at longer ranges; they aren't intended to be, either. However, the average full size hand gun is intended to be pretty accurate.)

Here's a link to a helpful free (PDF) target that may make you a better shot.

If I miss at the range -- which is rare -- I usually miss down and to the left of the bullseye (but not by much) because I'm pulling my index finger a little too hard -- I'm tightening my fingers.

If I was in a high stress situation -- say one where a yelling, large, aggressive nearly 300 pound man is charging me, I'd probably tighten up even more and miss to the left, say, hitting the assailant in the right arm. As I continued to pull the trigger, I would likely start missing up from the recoil of the gun -- more likely if I've firing a .40 cal, which has a sharper, more upward recoil than a .45 ACP or a 9mm does. (I've shot a few .40 cals before -- I've not shot a .40 cal Sig Sauer, but I have shot a couple of Berettas and I wasn't a fan. Besides -- .45 ACP is better than .40 anyways :) )

In this regard, the autopsy result of Michael Brown tends to support the officer's account of what happened. Brown was charging him, and under stress he over tightened, and missed to his left from center mass which would be the assailant's right arm / shoulder as he likely did not take a lot, if any, time to re-sight as he was in the line of a charging bull.

The other piece of evidence is going to be the brass. If it's all in a localized area, the officer was standing still. If it's scattered, then he was running toward the assailant.

The other question, which leads into another somewhat related point: How many rounds did Officer Darren Wilson fire? His gun had a 12 round magazine (+1 in the pipe) so it's possible that he missed a few times - which wouldn't surprise me, as here's a dirty little secret:

The police do not train with their firearms enough, or even as much as the average CHL holder.

A couple of my closest friends are police officers, and I can out shoot them any day of the week and twice on Sunday. Despite their "training" I have a much tighter grouping and many, many more bulls-eyes with the same weapon than they do.

The reality is, this trend tends to hold across the general population. You are far more likely to get shot by a cop -- whether intentional or not -- than you are a legal concealed carry licensee.

Consider that little fact the next time you want to think that "only the police should have guns".

And if you are a concealed license holder -- when was the last time you practiced? Find a range and keep those skills sharp.

The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness. -- John Muir

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