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Comment: Re:Article is flame bait. Or a troll. (Score 2) 266

by drcagn (#46745419) Attached to: Apple's Spotty Record of Giving Back To the Tech Industry

Regardless, his point still stands--open source is about sharing code. Open source groups share with Apple, Apple shares back, even when they don't necessarily have to. That, to me, is a great record. While it would be nice for Apple to give some money, I don't believe Apple should be shamed for not doing so. So many people champion open source for being free (as in beer) for their own benefit, but suddenly it's bad for Apple to use things for free even though they contribute back and sometimes create new projects that are open, too? Isn't that what open source is supposed to be all about?

Comment: This isn't that remarkable for Apple (Score 2) 380

by drcagn (#45916679) Attached to: Many Mac OS Users Not Getting Security Updates

For quite some time now, it's been Apple's policy to support the current OS release as well as the previous OS release. That means that since the release of Mavericks, they would be supporting Mavericks (current release) and Mountain Lion (previous release). But, this is also the first generation that the new OS 1) supports every machine that the previous release supported 2) is offered for completely free. So, practically speaking, there's very little reason to not just force all Mountain Lion users to upgrade to Mavericks to have support. However, I don't see any evidence on their page that they are even instating this policy? If they did, though, it would be very aggressive, but not really unremarkable for Apple.

Comment: Re:The game is not an exact duplicate (Score 1) 361

by drcagn (#45166321) Attached to: <em>Full Screen Mario</em>: Making the Case For Shorter Copyrights

Yep, I can practically get through Super Mario Bros. on the NES with my eyes closed due to muscle memory--I know where everything is, what buttons need to be pressed or held and for how long, etc. because I've played it so much. I tried that with this game and I just end up dying in places I normally have no problem with. And I'm using an NES controller to play.

Comment: FUD article (Score 1, Informative) 663

by drcagn (#44914217) Attached to: Apple Starts Blocking Unauthorized Lightning Cables With iOS 7

Third party/unauthorized cables are still working just fine, they are just popping up the warning. You can see the warning image in the article. It clearly doesn't say anything about blocking the connection, just that it may not work reliably, which is true.

This is just a crap website trying to stir up drama for hits. It goes ever farther by coming up with ridiculous speculation that Apple "may" block more stuff in the future.

Comment: Re:I'm not sure how I feel about this (Score 3, Insightful) 426

by drcagn (#44874207) Attached to: With XP's End of Life, Munich Will Distribute Ubuntu CDs

If these people are still running Windows XP, do you think they have smartphones and smart TVs?

I do remote support for a fortune 500 company whose product is targeted at the general public, and every day I work on Windows XP machines with 512MB of RAM, etc. and these clients don't have any other machine in their house. In reality it's time to buy a new computer, but that's not an option for everyone sadly.

Comment: Re:Warranty or insurance? (Score 1) 329

by drcagn (#43630659) Attached to: Is Buying an Extended Warranty Ever a Good Idea?

No need to be an asshole. The $15 a month accidental damage plan for cell phones absolutely does cover water damage--from spills. It does not cover full submersion. However, because it's pretty much impossible to tell the difference between full submersion and simple spill damage without disassembling the phone and analyzing it (something we never had the time or ability to do efficiently), we never denied anyone on this basis at my store.

As far as "returning" the device, it sounds like you have a different idea/expectation of what the service is. The Geek Squad Protection for mobile phones entitles you to a replacement refurbished phone. For laptops, it covers repair. It's advertised this way, so it's not like Best Buy is being dubious about it. If the device has been repaired twice (it used to be three times, but was reduced to two last year) for defects, on the third time, the "no lemon" clause kicks in and you are eligible for a replacement. This doesn't apply for accidental damage claims, where Best Buy will repair an unlimited amount of times unless the costs of repair exceed the value of the unit, in which case the unit goes "junkout" and the customer gets a replacement.

Computer models come and go so it's unlikely we would have the same model in the store if we were to replace the computer. For most customers (i.e. normal end user consumers who don't really understand computers), getting a new computer is an extremely complicated situation due to transferring data, configuration, reinstalling programs, etc. This isn't an easy situation to handle because of customers relying on bundled OEM software that isn't available on or differs on the new computer, the impossibility of transferring installed programs, they expect Best Buy to do all that for them, people have to dig through closets to find serial numbers, when they can't find them they expect Best Buy to just give them a new copy of Office, then they want Best Buy to replace incompatible accessories (spare batteries or AC adapters, etc.) etc. not to mention customers who do in-home services wanting us to come back out to their house for free to set things up again with a brand new machine, etc. It's a support nightmare whenever we replace a computer--it's usually much less headaches and frustration for all parties involved to just swap the bad motherboard and be done with it.

Comment: Re:Warranty or insurance? (Score 2) 329

by drcagn (#43626279) Attached to: Is Buying an Extended Warranty Ever a Good Idea?

I don't think you're looking at the big picture or at least you don't realize how stupid/clumsy most people are. When I worked at Best Buy , we saw people come in all the time--by that, I mean repeat offenders--with water-damaged phones and cracked screens. $15 a month or whatever it is may seem steep, but these people definitely got more than their money's worth out of it. Besides, it's not just about the monetary value, it's also about the peace of mind knowing that you can do pretty much whatever the hell you want with your smartphone, case or no case, and there are no consequences to you.

The bottom line is I saw a lot of people get their money's worth. Other people I'm sure never used theirs. That's the nature of insurance, no? The answer to "Is buying an extended/accidental damage warranty a good idea?" is different for every person because the way each person uses their stuff is different, as is their ability to fix it themselves or get it repaired if something does go wrong. I repaired computers at Best Buy, but whenever I did find myself in a situation where I was selling a computer, I'd ask the customer how they were planning on using the computer, and if it was a situation like it was for their kid and they were hoping this one laptop would get them through the entirety of college, I'd offer the warranty and explain why it'd be a good idea. If they didn't want it, or if they were just a housewife who needed a computer that's going to sit on a desk for a few years, I'd drop it (I'm not a pushy salesman type). Sure, when you do the math, the insurance companies will always come out ahead, but as someone who fulfilled the repair work for warranties, that doesn't mean I didn't encounter customers day-in and day-out who would say "Wow, I'm really glad I bought that warranty."

Comment: Re:Siskel & Ebert Sneak Previews (Score 1) 198

by drcagn (#43365859) Attached to: Film Critic Roger Ebert Dead at 70 Of Cancer

I have to respectfully disagree with you there. While some good points can be brought up on PTI, at most times the show seems so scripted that I cannot possibly accept that Wilbon and Kornheiser believe what's coming out of their mouths. It's like they are purposely given point and counterpoint by writers.

Nothing is rich but the inexhaustible wealth of nature. She shows us only surfaces, but she is a million fathoms deep. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson