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Submission + - Tape Disintegration Threatens Historical Records, But Chemistry Can Help (

An anonymous reader writes: Modern storage methods are designed with longevity in mind. But we haven't always had the scientific knowledge or the foresight to do so. From the late 60s to the late 80s, much of the world's cultural history was recorded on magnetic tapes. Several decades on, those tapes are disintegrating, and we're faced with the permanent loss of that data. "The Cultural Heritage Index estimates that there are 46 million magnetic tapes in museums and archives in the U.S. alone—and about 40 percent of them are of unknown quality. (The remaining 60 percent are known to be either already disintegrated or in good enough condition to be played.)" Fortunately, researchers have worked out a method to determine which copies are recoverable. They "combined a laptop-sized infrared spectrometer with an algorithm that uses multivariate statistics to pick up patterns of all the absorption peaks." Here's the abstract from their research paper. "As the tapes go through the breakdown reaction, the chemical changes give off tiny signals in the form of compounds, which can be seen with infrared light—and when the patterns of reactions are analyzed with the model, it can predict which tapes are playable."

Comment Re:Microphone access. (Score 1) 223

In the past, you HAD to agree to permissions before installation. (unless you used cyanogenmod)

now, in Android 6.0, it disallows everything and asks you the first time it needs to access something. if you grant the permission, it is granted until you manually revoke it. if you deny it, it is denied until next time. if you deny it second time, it is denied forever (or until you manually grant it again).

Comment Re: Microphone access. (Score 5, Interesting) 223

i gave up on gapps (apps for google services). i run cyanogenmod without gapps with f-droid and amazon as my two package sources. if i need something from play store, i download it manually using RACCOON and install the apk. i use caldav-sync and carddav-sync to sync with google contacts and calendars.

It is a radical improvement to my life. No google tracking, longer battery life, fast bootup, longer battery life, phone uses less memory and i have a longer battery life.

Comment Re:LXTerminal (Score 1) 352

I mostly don't care what terminal i use (i slightly prefer yakuake) as long as there is a font that looks good and a cursor that doesn't annoy me. I like the default terminal font OS X uses and love the red semitransparent cursor ChromeOS has. In fact, ChromeOS terminal also has a good font but OSX's is better. Does anybody know the name of that font?

The other font i'd want in my terminals is the pre-framebuffer-era vty font we all used. What's was that called?

Comment Re: Why? (Score 1) 166

a few months ago i watched a part of an interview with a CTO of a navigation software company (they have apps for ios/android/blackberry/wp8). i think it was Sygic but i'm not sure now. he said 92% of all android installations of their software were pirated vs a completely negligible percentile on iOS. they get telemetry data from the app so they know exact numbers. he also said that historically, the worst piracy was on symbian.

if i was getting such levels of piracy on my app, i'd just give up on that platform. with android 4.1, google announced paid applications will have apks encrypted with device specific keys so they can't be pirated but this is either not being used by many apps or somehow being circumvented. perhaps somebody could enlighten me?

Comment Re:Fast, faster, fastest (Score 1) 34

i have a Samsung Galaxy S2 (very old in phone terms). i installed cyanogenmod 12.1 without gapps and use amazon appmarket for apps with caldav-sync and carddav-sync to sync with my google calendars/contacts. My phone boots up in 7 seconds unencrypted and 26 encrypted - that includes me typing encryption password. Battery now lasts 3 days instead of one.

If i need an app that's only available in google playstore, i use free java program called 'raccoon' to download it and install it manually.

Comment Re:That's special... (Score 1) 163

have you clicked and read the descriptions of ANY of those? osx has had just as many of these "viruses that require the user to be stupid AND do most of the virus' work".

btw, does "flashback" ring any bells? it forced apple to remove the "doesn't get pc viruses" from its "why you'll love a mac" page.

Quark! Quark! Beware the quantum duck!