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Comment: Re:Moo (Score 1) 469 469

>> You've never been down to Georgia, I take it.
>> I'd bet it against your soul, because I think I'm better than you.
> What does that even mean?
You might be trolling, phantomfive, but just in case you are not, I'm New Around Here is quoting a song called "The devil came down to Georgia" by the Charley Daniels Band.

Comment: Re:Beer saved the World! (Score 3, Informative) 325 325

It was mostly what the British called "short beer". It was pretty watery and had just enough alcohol to kill much of the bacteria.
Nearly. ISTR it was called "small beer" not "short beer". Even modern beer doesn't contain enough alcohol to kill bacteria; the important thing is that to make beer you had to boil it, which kills off any waterborne bacteria that were in your water supply. So up until the advent of treated water supplies you might well get cholera or dysentry from your water supply, but not from your beer.

Comment: Re:Skype doesn't work on Android (Score 4, Interesting) 476 476

Support for (traditional, non-Android) Linux is also dodgy in Skype, with the Linux versions of the software being a long way behind the Windows version. I am not naive enough to think that Google are non-evil, but if MS can get away with using Skype as a lock-in lever for Windows, I don't have much sympathy with their whine that Google are doing the same thing with YouTube.

Comment: Re:Ugly (Score 1) 90 90

That logo is hideous. Who's going to be putting that on their packaging?
At least it doesn't look like two people performing an act unsuitable for discussion on a family website ( See here for the canonical example). You can pay graphic designers a LOT more money than was spent on the DRM Free logo and still get something that is astonishingly bad.

Comment: Re:Missing Plotting Tools (Score 1) 204 204

But the biggest pluses of Matlab is being able to plot your results, and work interactively from the command line
This. Precisely this. If Julia can reasonably rapidly acquire plotting capabilities that approach those of R (and hence are much better than those of MATLAB) then it may have some traction. If it remains the case that you have to dump your results out of Julia and use another tool to plot them, then you are better off using R/MATLAB/Octave/IDL/SciLab/Yorick for everything except the most number-crunchingly intense tasks. And you would probably do _those_ in a traditional compiled language anyway.

Comment: it's the film that is at 11 (Score 1) 615 615

Apparently, in the distant past, TV announcers in the USA would use the phrase "Film at 11" to mean that the film that was normally on at 10pm, after the 9pm news, would be an hour later tonight, as momentous events required an extra hour of news coverage. Hence the non-sarcastic use of "Film at 11" to mean "That's big news" and the sarcastic use meaning "That is not really news at all."

Comment: Re:Summer is Over in North America (Score 1) 363 363

Presumably "this summer" means the next summer to occur, i.e. summer 2012. But if they are taking a road trip across the States, then maybe they are not wussies. Such a trip is perfectly possible in the winter. The wife and I drove from Mississippi to California and back over Christmas 1987, in our '76 Dodge dart, taking in the Hoover dam, Carlsbad, the Grand Canyon, San Francisco etc. Meteor crater was officially closed when we visited it, so we drove down the snowy road and hiked up to the rim. Never mind the museum, it is worth just looking at the big hole in the ground.

Comment: Observatories, caves ... (Score 1) 363 363

If you are in LA, drive up the mountain to the Mount Wilson Observatory in honour of Edwin Hubble. If you like observatories you can do the one in Griffith Park in the same day (if it isn't closed for refurbishment). It has appeared in at least one Star Trek episode. If in the southern deserts, visit the Hoover dam and Carlsbad Caverns. In San Francisco, I thought the exploratorium wasn't bad as science museums go.

Comment: Re:hardware solutions & dumbing down the world (Score 1) 356 356

I also don't think that driving without power steering is a hazard.
Indeed. My Ford focus dumped its power steering fluid during a long drive. I was able to keep going; the only hard part was parking at the end of the trip. Once you are up to about 20mph you hardly even notice that the power steering is b0rked.

You're using a keyboard! How quaint!