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Comment: Re:Who does not have a computer in 2014? (Score 1) 88

by iamacat (#47567371) Attached to: Reglue: Opening Up the World To Deserving Kids With Linux Computers

Salvation army should take computers in good working order. The problem is that support and education need to go along with hardware. Your box should at least be able to run modern software and come with installation media for the same for someone to be able to support it.

Comment: Would computer itself be a limiting factor today? (Score 1) 88

by iamacat (#47566025) Attached to: Reglue: Opening Up the World To Deserving Kids With Linux Computers

Chromebooks are $200 new. Figure in used and people who can not afford one are in more urgent need of assistance in other areas of their lives. Once you have one, there are plenty of online tools for education, even coding.

Internet connections are a biggie. If anyone in the family has a cell plan, tethering would be an option. It would be a huge help if wireless providers donated access, even to a very limited plan with low speed and only selected educational sites.

Comment: Subscription and small catalog don't go together (Score 1) 63

by iamacat (#47562587) Attached to: EA Tests Subscription Access To Game Catalog

I would consider buying a bundle outright, but I don't see for whom this is going to make sense. The whole point of Netflix is that you can continuously watch new movies and don't have to buy many from other sources. Here I will only like a portion of already small catalog and will still need to keep buying non-EA games. This kind of offering should really be done by Sony, Nintendo or Microsoft with games from many publishers.

Comment: Paid updates? (Score 1) 281

Would you pay $29.99 to update your device to a new version of iOS or Android? If so, I am sure you would get much better/longer support - more in line with Windows updates on existing hardware than current mobile status quo. But if most people figure they would rather get a new device as soon as their mobile contract is up for renewal every two years, why should device manufacturers care about support anything beyond this time?

In truth, contract subsidizes are not good for users by hiding the total cost they end up paying for their device. Most WOULD be better of paying for a higher quality OS update to make their $800 phone last 3-4 years instead of 2. We should also include full environmental cost of mining and recycling toxic elements of modern electronics into the device price. If someone can make these last longer rather than creating more pollution, they should have a solid incentive to do so.

Comment: It is HARD to support non-shipping devices (Score 2) 281

If you plan to support new code base on old devices at all, development of a large project will result in hundreds of decision points where you can either have more features and faster or easier to maintain code on shipping hardware or better performance on discontinued devices. Just how much effort would YOU spend in the later, especially with a hard deadline coming up?

A new OS is also likely to create new demands on device drivers. How much support are you going to get from the manufacturers after they have discontinued the hardware, got out of an entire area of business or simply went belly up? Anyone who has a working knowledge of the chipset could already have left the company or be engaged on other pressing projects.

I think the most realistic solution is to release all available and legally unconstrained knowledge about the platform to community so that they can provide solutions like CyanogenMod as long as there is sufficient interest. In the meantime, try to treat free updates to discontinued hardware as a glass half full. The vendor has spent millions of dollars developing, testing and certifying it, with no commercial gains for itself besides reputation.

Comment: Re:Teachers perspective... (Score 1) 223

by iamacat (#47528251) Attached to: Chromebooks Are Outselling iPads In Schools

I am glad your high school has money for a Photoshop license for each student and an IT stuff to fix and remove malware from all their Windows laptops. For most, it will be more realistic to have a lab with Photoshop and in the meantime focus on students being able to do some web research and type up a paper.

Comment: Right tool for right job? (Score 1) 223

by iamacat (#47528189) Attached to: Chromebooks Are Outselling iPads In Schools

I can not imagine homework is very practical without keyboard or trackpad. Chromebooks are also easy to pass along to next kid or share without privacy issues, and if they break down, like things in kids' hands often do, replacement is exceptionally cheap. Tablets for web browsing, visual tasks like photo editing, and casual games, laptops for heavy duty typing and bigger screen/multi application workflows.

Comment: See the writing on the wall (Score 1) 353

by iamacat (#47512287) Attached to: Netflix Reduces Physical-Disc Processing, Keeps Prices the Same

Physical media is going away and Netflix is focused on improving streaming business. Expect mailing service to deteriorate and eventually go away. Realistically the future is pirate bay, but I can imagine especially scrupulous individuals setting up a non-profit DVD trading service.

Aren't you glad you're not getting all the government you pay for now?