Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Deal of the Day - Pay What You Want for the Learn to Code Bundle, includes AngularJS, Python, HTML5, Ruby, and more. ×

Comment Re:Misguided move (Score 1) 40

The problem is that coding the rules of DnD is actually hard. WotC tried producing that with 4th edition, but failed to release a working prototype (look at the advertisements in the back an originally printed PHB). Considering the amount of DM discretion given, only DMs themselves could code all their personal house rules and additions to the core game.

Comment Some pro/cons (Score 3, Insightful) 116

Dell has a history of doing a weird/terrible job at merging in company acquisitions. I'm looking at you Compellant/Equalogic, Wyse, Force10. I suspect EMC is going to be another one of those standalone assets for some time just because at the scale EMC operates, the contractual obligations to their large customers is going to make change slow.

Looking at the storage assets alone, it's a bit strange to merge 3 competing companies together when they really havn't merged the first 2 after several years. The general vibe I've gotten from other peers is to stay away from Dell Storage with a 10ft pole, but EMC hardware was pretty good for traditional storage. When looking at the EMC storage products it's relevant to note the significant differences under the hood when it comes to VNX/VMAX/Isilon coming from the old Data General acquisition in 1999 and the new XtremIO arrays which was a totally different company until 2012.

I do look forward to them eventually gutting whatever hair-brained system manages their support system. After years of working with EMC, I'm fleeing not because they make a poor product or a person does a poor job. Rather, it's because their SR management system is horrible. I shouldn't have to keep my support district manager's cell phone handy when they decide to route my SR into oblivion. I've worked with Dell for a long time as well and at least I can generally talk to a knowledgable human being without have to go through a checklist first.

From a customer account perspective I'm also hopeful. I've had my account rep change 3 times in 2 years; none of which have actually made the trip across the US to see us face-to-face. On the other hand, recently Dell has made several relationship improvements. I actually see my dell rep and his engineer 2-3 times a year. This makes a huge difference in my opinion on the sales/account team.

As a VMware customer as well, I don't see a significant difference in what will happen. EMC has generally been hands off when it comes to steering VMware. The only real advantage I've seen them take with their ownership is getting to be the first out of the gate with new VMware features, but it's not locking others out. If EMC was to take a strong hand in steering the VMware ship VSAN would never have seen the light of day and vVols would be an EMC exclusive. Likewise form VMware's perspective EVO:RAIL wouldn't have allowed any other partners to produce solutions if they weren't trying to be neutral.

I'm hoping that Dell doesn't cannibalize or kill of the EMC Twinstrata acquisition. It will also be interesting to see what Dell does with some of the other EMC assets like RSA, Pivotal, Avamar, Data Domain, the plethora of hosting solutions, Greenplum, Mozy, Watch4Net, & Iomega.

Comment A little math (Score 1) 55

Maybe, just maybe this could have worked before the era of ISP data caps, but now there is no way.

For the sake of argument, lets assume you're using the minimum requirement of 12Mb/s. Lets also assume you're on the high end of the average american household ISP data cap at around 300GB/month. This means you're getting 0.9132Mb/s of sustained usage rate all month long to fit beneath your data cap.

If you take that 300GB cap and divide it out at a rate of 12Mb/s, that means you can use their service for 2 days 7 hours 33 minutes and 20 seconds of solid gameplay. This also assumes you have zero other internet traffic the entire month and the measurements being used are 100% accurate.

If you take the lower average cap at 150 GB per month, and 1080p service plan that changes reduces your usage amount down to 6 hours and 40 minutes. I would hope that their service will default to the lowest setting possible (unlike most video streaming services), or many people will suddenly find themselves over their caps with a hefty bill.

Comment Of course... (Score 1) 102

So you're saying that being a consultant is up. Maybe that has to do with corporations restructuring to not have full-time employees, and outsource as much as possible to avoid benefit payments. Also you're saying manufacturing is down. Have you considered maybe this has do with the US patent/copyright system and that startups have to invest huge sums of money to verify the ting you want to build is vaguely related to something being held in a warchest somewhere or by a troll. Absolutely improvements in automation reduce the time to produce the same product, but somewhere somebody has to generate new product demand that doesn't own their own fabrication plants on the other side of the world.

Comment Free, easy tools exist for basic design (Score 1) 45

I taught myself the basics of 3d printing without prior experience. At first I beat my head against the big name CAD tools from companies like Autodesk and Adobe, as well as opensource ones like freeCAD. I didn't need to do fancy high-detail modeling (which is hit-or-miss anyway due to printer fidelity and general hiccups in hardware). Eventually I found a free tool online at Tinkercad.com. Shortly after I started using it, it was bought out by Autodesk however they've still kept it free. It doesn't have the super advanced power of other tools, but without that power I found myself not getting lost nearly as much.

Comment Missing the point (Score 4, Insightful) 294

Today's media consumer wants what it wants, when it wants it, right then. This is opposite traditional cable company methodologies. It's why customer's are cutting the cord. To that end, the first service to offer the best selection will win (pricing models aside). If it takes multiple overlapping subscriptions to get the selection, customers will be forced to pick and choose or to go back to pirating. The stuff frequently pirated are the things that customers can't afford (multiple services), can't find (selection problems), or are going to have going 24/7 (kids shows and bandwidth caps). I don't blame netflix entirely though. It's a business decision to keep from raising rates. The real problem lies with the distribution points arguing unreasonable amounts of money for potentially exclusive contracts with providers like Netflix/Hulu/AmazonPrime/CrunchyRoll/etc.