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Comment One word: Rocrail (Score 1) 149

This is the true "for nerds" approach. I've got into model railroading recently and one of the most interesting problems I've got into was "how do I make all this work automatically", this led me to rocrail. To fully create and automate a layout, I got into circuit design, programming, modelling, etc. Very interesting hobby that can go as far as you want it to go in terms of abilities.

That said, getting into the hobby and specially DCC was a real pain. There are so many competing technologies to do the same thing and so much terminology that everyone references as if it was obvious that it was complicated to get a clear idea of what are all the components needed when approaching a design.

Comment Re:Internet? (Score 1) 67

Yes, that's how it works. They already have cellular service but not necessarily data services, so they provide data services for free to certain sites. Or in the case that they may already have data services, these sites don't count towards total usage.
On top of giving access to these sites, it's a way to enable data services for users that don't have it and that may never get to it due to the upfront cost and can now use data to access other sites (for a fee) if they desire it.

Comment Re:Internet? (Score 1) 67

Providing Access to Free Basic Services
The app provides free basic services in markets where internet access may be less affordable. It allows people to browse selected health, employment and local information websites without data charges. The app is currently available to Airtel customers in Ghana, Kenya and Zambia, Tigo customers in Colombia and Tanzania, and Reliance customers in India. It will continue to expand to other parts of the world.

Comment Re:high quality hardware (Score 1) 592

>whilst i find the practices of apple absolutely deplorable - forcing people to sign up for an ID in order to use hardware products that they have paid for
They don't in laptops. I've been using macs for 5 years and never logged in into app store, icloud or any of that.

Only caveat is if you want to upgrade OS you have to ask someone else to download it for you or find it "somewhere else"

But I agree with you in that I don't like it and I'm not sure how long will it last without being a requirement, by how it's evolving I guess not long :(

Comment Why upgrade to the latest shinny new version? (Score 1) 598

I'm a mac user but far from a fan boy, I just think the combination of software and hardware is the best you can get right now (used Desktop linux for 10 years before switching to mac and at some point in life I decided my time one of the most valuable things in life, still use linux for many things thou)

Now, what baffles me is that people in slashdot complain about new shinny software having bugs. I'm not saying it's not a problem, but why are you (supposedly knowledgeable slashdot people) upgrading to a .0 version in the first place? I personally don't see any reason to do it, and every time I've upgraded I've done it in the last stages of a certain version, right now I'm using 10.9.5 in three different machines, it's rock solid for me and I don't plan to upgrade to Yosemite any time soon. Main problem is when you buy new hardware and you're stuck with the latest version.

Comment Re:Whatsapp is ubiquitous in many places of the wo (Score 3, Informative) 116

I may add to this, when you're traveling it usually costs ~$1/day for some megs of data roaming (5-50mb i've seen), which is more than enough to send lots of messages, while ONE roaming SMS may cost the same. Again, probably not very common in the US to travel abroad, but think about Europe how much people travel and live in any other European country other than their own and where they have most of friends/family. You'd use Whatsapp (or something similar) lots more if you had to pay roaming charges to send SMS across states in the US.

Comment Re:That's it (Score 1) 243

So let me get this straight, dropbox has the ability to identify individual users on the amount of files that they have which are identified as "pirate" files?, no matter if they match your files against hashes or whatever (and they aren't actually scanning each individual file), but I'm concerned I'm boing flagged as a pirate for uploading to my private folder any kind of file I have.

Comment Update to Mavericks requires login to iTunes (Score 1) 380

So no, I'm not doing it. Maybe I'm paranoid but I can accept my phone requiring an iTunes account, but I will not put an apple account or anything on my personal computer.
I also suspect that this means that to get these security updates I will need to be logged in to get updates, even if I got mavericks from another "source", so not gonna happen for me, that's my limit...

Comment Re:Roll your own - but choose the right SW (Score 2) 200

Depending on your needs this might not be the right choice, as stated on their home:


Frequently changing project files, like text, office documents, and images
Tracking and syncing files edited by multiple people
Reverting a file to any point in its history
Preventing spying on your files on the server using encryption

Not so great:

Full computer backups
Storing your photo or music collection
Large binary files that change often, like video editing projects

For general purpose Dropbox replacement I recommend ownCloud

Comment Re:100% Employer paid = 100% commitment. (Score 1) 117

I don't agree, it really depends on the kind of training and the time and money that the company is investing in it. I think that the company should always invest on some kind of ongoing training (whether it's sending people to training, organizing internal training, paying for materials and certifications for self study, etc), and this shouldn't necessarily mean that I'd have to sign a contractual agreement. The company HAS to invest to keep an ongoing operation. If they don't do so and the employees don't agree to study on their own time or sign an agreement then it will lower the work quality, does the company really want that?, well, many seem to think so, but they have to realize that an ongoing operation requires additional investment besides salary.

186,000 Miles per Second. It's not just a good idea. IT'S THE LAW.