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Comment: Re:Few Million a Year is a BIG Stretch Goal (Score 2) 181

by gweilo8888 (#48813091) Attached to: Tesla To Produce 'a Few Million' Electric Cars a Year By 2025
You're only just now realizing this? Even Toyota, the world's largest automaker, has *global* production of just around 10 million cars per year, and unlike Tesla, their vehicles aren't carefully aimed at sucking blood from the rich -- they actually sell vehicles the common man can afford. It's beyond completely absurd to suggest that Tesla will get to even a third of that point within a decade.

Comment: Re:Cheaper option, Google Cardboard (Score 1) 74

by gweilo8888 (#48812661) Attached to: Ars: Samsung Gear VR Is Today's Best Virtual Reality
Even the supposed 1440p of the DK3 -- has that spec ever been officially confirmed? Not to my knowledge -- spanned across a 100-degree field of view as in the DK2 is less than 25.6 horizontal pixels per degree.

I can't calculate more precisely than that, sadly, because I can't find a FOV spec for an individual eye with the Oculus, and I don't know what overlap there is between eyes to calculate this. Check out what the human visual system is capable of, though, and even 25.6 pixels per degree is not remotely close, so it's splitting hairs to worry about what the actual figure is.

The fact of the matter is that even on the latest model, you are getting just around 1280x1440 pixels per eye -- far less than even a consumer monitor these days -- and that is being wrapped around a much greater area of your field of view than would be the case with that consumer monitor. The perceived resolution of every VR rig on the market or that I've seen publicly in development is awful; the DK3 is just a bit less awful than most. The problem is that to provide sufficient resolution would require custom displays (instead of cheaping out and using existing smartphone LCDs), and it would require a hell of a lot more processing power to provide a low-latency, lag and stutter-free signal at that resolution. In other words, it would be expensive as hell, and that's before the developer themselves made any profit at all.

To my mind, we're still a good five years or more away from quality VR being affordable on a consumer budget. Whether there will be a viable gaming industry left at that point is up for debate, with the way that so much of the industry has abandoned quality games in favor of nickel-and-diming its customers to death on freemium drek.

Comment: Re:Cheaper option, Google Cardboard (Score 1) 74

by gweilo8888 (#48810433) Attached to: Ars: Samsung Gear VR Is Today's Best Virtual Reality
And having used the latest version myself in a tech demo at CES, even Oculus suffers badly from latency, not to mention absolutely shockingly-low resolution that makes it feel like a 1980s video game. Sorry, but I'll be sitting out this round of VR entirely; we need much greater processing power and resolution before VR becomes anything more than a momentary distraction that is quickly forgotten.

Comment: Re: Seen the e-Golf? (Score 2) 395

by gweilo8888 (#48482487) Attached to: France Wants To Get Rid of Diesel Fuel
90 miles is frankly pathetic. That's a best case scenario 45 miles there and back; less with frequent starting and stopping. And 45 miles by road is probably not like 35 miles as the crow flies. Imagine a 35 mile radius around your home. You cannot get any further than that without recharging. And that's supposed to be good mileage?

These work for a regular daily commute of relatively short distance, nothing more. In the real world you need to own a second car to do anything useful after work, on weekends and holidays, or when taking a vacation. And if you need a second car for that, you bought the wrong first car.

Comment: Re:Patents last 20 years (Score 3, Insightful) 100

by gweilo8888 (#48406895) Attached to: Group Tries To Open Source Seeds
Except that as soon as one patent nears expiration, another slightly differing patent that still covers the same item is filed for and granted. And you'd be a fool to assume that patents will stay at 20 years when our politicians are completely corrupt and have a revolving-door system with the very corporations the public needs protection from. Lobbying (read: legalized bribery) makes it likely that the scope of patents will continue to expand, just as the scope of copyright does.

Comment: Re:So, why the continued G-love? (Score 3, Insightful) 105

by gweilo8888 (#48387303) Attached to: Google Wallet API For Digital Goods Will Be Retired On March 2, 2015
Of course, that still leaves the problem of the company that does one thing, and damn well, then being taken over by Google, Apple, or Microsoft, at which point their product languishes unupdated or is canceled altogether, or it's turned into a new Google / Apple / Microsoft product that is abandoned a year later.

The smart money is on those who do one thing, and do it just about well enough. Not good enough to get bought and taken over, not diversified enough to stop giving a crap. They're stuck making just-good-enough products for you and me to use.

and I'm only half-joking.

Comment: Always except when it isn't (Score 5, Informative) 109

by gweilo8888 (#48322053) Attached to: Why the Time Is Always Set To 9:41 In Apple Ads

Headline: "the Time Is Always Set To 9:41 In Apple Ads"

Summary: "the clock has traditionally been always set to 9:42 in Apple advertisements." ... "The time was even slightly tweaked in 2010" ... "it displayed a different time"

That's some quality editing there, Slashdot.

Comment: Re:only for nerds (Score 1) 66

Now, doing this for laptops... that's the real question--why haven't they done this *yet*. (And no, just because you can aggravatingly, pain-stakingly pry open a laptop to service it and in some cases interchange some parts does not qualify).

They have done it -- you just have to pay enterprise pricing if you want this feature. Look at HP's ZBook series for one example. Slide one latch and the entire bottom pops off, revealing the hard drive bay, DIMM sockets, mSATA slot and wireless LAN card without removing a single screw. Removing the hard drive means taking out one screw the first time, but it is designed so that it will latch in place without the screw if you want regular hard drive swaps. And the full, extremely detailed service manual is available free to all, should you decide you need to access parts that aren't typically upgraded on a notebook.

Comment: Re:only for nerds (Score 1) 66

For a phone, I agree modularity (other than the battery) is a bad idea. For a desktop or notebook PC, I couldn't disagree more.

The ability to upgrade my machines isn't there for adding stuff willy-nilly every six months. It is there for adding stuff when I *need* to, and allowing me to choose what best fits my needs in the first place. My desktop PC will last me five years easily (it is already more than three years old and still far more powerful than I need for current games, applications like high-definition video editing, raw file editing using DxO Labs' PRIME denoising engine, and so on.) But I am able to make large or small upgrades as and when I want, and quite likely, will extend my PC beyond that five year window. The same for my notebook, to a slightly lesser extent. (Although it's enterprise-grade, and so unusually upgradeable for a notebook.)

And the best thing? Both exceeded the specs of Apple hardware at the time I bought them, and were only half to two-thirds the price of equivalent Apple hardware at purchase. Apple's pricing is a tax on the stupid and the bone-idle.

Comment: Re:it is perfectly timed (Score 1) 252

by gweilo8888 (#48227505) Attached to: Apple's Next Hit Could Be a Microsoft Surface Pro Clone
And it's performance in every way is significantly less. When they had the smaller res, they lacked the CPU/GPU the modern Apple hardware has now. The modern Android hardware has the better GPU/CPU but the screen res is killing performance. Apple let them dance right over the sweet spot.

You fail at reading comprehension. My wife is required to have an iPhone by her company, sadly. I have compared it side by side, and despite the higher resolution, my phone is as fast or faster than hers. Also, Apple hasn't "let them dance right over the sweet spot" -- their latest phone has the exact same resolution as mine. Apple has showed up late to the party, as I said.

So it's smaller? Behind them times already I guess. Otherwise the six is pocketable for anyone.

The 6 is significantly smaller. The 6 Plus is significantly bigger. My phone hits the sweet spot; the 6 Plus is far too big, and would stick out of all my pockets by a good half-inch unless shoe-horned in diagonally (and uncomfortably.) The 6 is too small and low-res.

Waterproof is something I use a case for if I need. I use the phone in the rain briefly without issue as I always have.

So you make your phone even bigger and heavier, while mine shoots photos underwater just fine right out of the box. Yeah, you're right. Apple's approach of not offering features its customers need is much better.

Your phone basically sounds like a fish-mash of things not important to anyone anymore (FM radio....)

Well done cherry-picking the *only* technology my phone has which is old tech, while ignoring all of the brand-new tech that your phone lacks (and has lacked for years, in the case of things like NFC, while *every* other manufacturer has long offered it and made great use of it.)

Which actually works and opens a whole world you'll be left behind with as you listen to... FM radio.

Well done ignoring the fact that I don't need a fingerprint sensor because my phone will be unlocked whenever it is near me, but lock as soon as it is stolen. In other words, while you're fumbling to reach a poorly-positioned fingerprint sensor that requires both hands to use and was already exploited within days of its introduction, I'll be listening to... FM radio, which as of 2012, 93% of Americans said they still did on at least a weekly basis.

Fully operational and utterly useless.

So you think Apple just added utterly useless tech? You must be so proud of them. You're also flat-out wrong: NFC in the iPhone 6 series has been confirmed to be crippled, locked down to work only with Apple Pay and not with any of the many other functions which users on Android use it for on a daily basis.

I wouldn't want what you have now either, but at least it probably also supports FM radio!

Nope, no FM radio on the watch. Unlike Apple, Google didn't try to shoehorn a bunch of pointless crap onto a tiny screen and an absolutely awful user interface for a bound-to-disappoint user experience. My watch does just enough, and does it quickly and reliably, saving me taking my phone out of my pocket dozens of times a day while monitoring my health and controlling the functions of my phone I'd actually want to control remotely. One day, you'll have your own bloated, awful equivalent of it, once Apple finally catches up.

They are never late, they arrive when they feel they have something worth selling. I as a buyer appreciate not having to tolerate half-baked crap any longer, that was fine when I'm young but like Danny Glover I'm too old for that shit. Including FM radio.

You have tunnel vision, grandpa. You're also in a small and shrinking subspecies. Even my long-time Apple zealot friends -- one of whom has exclusively used Apple products for ~30+ years and for many years ran an Apple-only retailer he founded himself -- are complaining that Apple has lost its way, lost its relevance, is churning out buggy and unreliable me-too products, and no longer satisfies them. And that really says it all.

Where there's a will, there's an Inheritance Tax.