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Comment: Re:Just a failed publicity stunt (Score 1) 200

by fmaxwell (#41807701) Attached to: Google Nexus 4 Prototype Lost In a Bar
I realize that you are personally invested in seeing this phone succeed, and that you can site some minority of smartphone users who are fine with massive phones, but it doesn't change the fact that my argument is sound. If you want to talk into something the size of a small tablet, I'm not going to stop you, but don't be surprised when Apple outsells it with phone-sized phones.

Comment: Re:Just a failed publicity stunt (Score 1) 200

by fmaxwell (#41796951) Attached to: Google Nexus 4 Prototype Lost In a Bar

Hmm - if that is true, I wonder why Google wants to create the impression it has a security team that is quite happy to pretend to be law enforcement.

Because, unlike Apple, they could not get actual law enforcement interested in getting involved. So they needed to do something to add some drama, intrigue, and a sense of danger to the situation.

Comment: Re:Just a failed publicity stunt (Score 1) 200

by fmaxwell (#41796907) Attached to: Google Nexus 4 Prototype Lost In a Bar
I don't think it was intended to be funny. I think that it was intended to make people think that there is the same kind of buzz around this phone that there was around the iPhone that was left in the bar. The whole intimidating security routine was all part of the "just like Apple" routine they were doing.

I'm sure that there are some folks with big pockets that will like the phone, but I just don't see it having the kind of mass appeal that the iPhone does. On the other hand, a huge phone definitely can't be missed on a display filled with normal size phones, so it will get attention at Best Buy.

I've seen women with hands big enough to hold this phone comfortably. Of course, they used to be men. ;)

If you can imagine a 4.7" display functioning as a laptop replacement for routine stuff, you've got way better eyes than I have. I go nuts having to work on a laptop with a 13" display.

Comment: Just a failed publicity stunt (Score 1) 200

by fmaxwell (#41795635) Attached to: Google Nexus 4 Prototype Lost In a Bar
What's really funny about this is that it's a transparent publicity stunt -- but almost no one in the mainstream press even noticed.

Even if you're Google, you can't create much buzz about the release of yet another Android phone into an already overcrowded marketplace. It's about as exciting as a new inkjet printer.

Outside of the nerdosphere, there really isn't a lot of call for a phone that is almost the size of a small tablet . It dwarfs the iPhone 5 shown next to it, and bigger isn't always better in something that is supposed to be portable. Well-heeled consumers can afford both a smartphone and a tablet. They don't need a phone so large that it requires its owner to only buy clothes with massive pockets.

Comment: Re:Never designed to be network-aware (Score 1) 182

by fmaxwell (#41795485) Attached to: Craig Mundie Blames Microsoft's Product Delays On Cybercrime

Microsoft's entire security model was based on the idiotic notion that one could take a single user OS with no security (Win 3.x/95/98/Me) and years later create successors (NT/2K/etc.) that didn't break applications that were already written. It wasn't users -- it was coddling the software vendors that drove the convoluted, unmanageable pseudo-security that got pasted on to the OS.

No rational OS architect would have permitted end-user applications to write to OS system directories, nor would they have allowed Dynamically Linked Libraries to be created and added to OS directories with no entity controlling the namespace (meaning you could create a blorm.dll that installed with your product and I could create a blorm.dll that overwrote it when my product was installed).

Other ideas, like allowing some kid in the Philippines to e-mail you a script that automatically ran when viewed, were just examples of the level of stupidity that had permeated the Microsoft campus.

Comment: Re:Or not (Score 1) 239

by GillBates0 (#37773204) Attached to: "World's Most Relaxing Music" Composed

I have trouble listening to music with words because I sing along in my head, and I have a trouble listening to classical music because I play along in my head (I'm a violinist).

I think whether you feel relaxed listening to 'worded' music is highly dependent on what the lyrics convey. For example, if you were to listen to Meditative chants (Vedic/Hindu/Buddhist/Sanskrit Peace chants as an example), whose sole purpose is to invoke Peace in the mind, you'd find them relaxing. Here's one such example of a 'Shanti Mantra' (Peace chant): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ywdlxIIKiU4 .

On the other hand, if you listen to hardcore Heavy Metal, or violent Hip-Hop lyrics, you'll find it has the opposite effect, and gets you all worked up.

User Journal

Journal: Verizon Privacy Policy Changes = Privacy WTFAGE 2

Journal by GillBates0

Dear Valued Customer, en español

Your privacy is an important priority at Verizon. We want to let you know that Verizon will soon participate in a program that will improve the ability of advertisers to reach our Verizon Online customers based on your physical address. The goal is to provide online ads that may be more relevant to you.

Privacy

+ - Verizon Privacy Policy Changes-> 1

Submitted by
GillBates0
GillBates0 writes "Dear Valued Customer,
  Your privacy is an important priority at Verizon. We want to let you know that Verizon will soon participate in a program that will improve the ability of advertisers to reach our Verizon Online customers based on your physical address. The goal is to provide online ads that may be more relevant to you.

This program uses your address to determine whether you reside in a local area an advertiser is trying to reach. However, Verizon won’t share your address with advertisers as part of this process. Advertisers won’t know it’s you specifically or where you actually live. If you do not want us to allow advertisers to send you ads based on your geographic area you can let us know by selecting here.

What does this mean for you?

Certain ads you’ll see while browsing the Internet may be directed to you and other Verizon Online customers in your area, so these ads may be of more interest to you. For example, a pizza chain may want to deliver their ad to give a special offer to people living in a particular area. Using this program, national brands and local businesses can tailor their offers, coupons, and incentives to your local area.

Protection of Your Personal Information

Verizon protects your personal information as described in our privacy policy. You can learn about Verizon’s ad practices or let us know that you do not want to participate by selecting here. If you don’t want to participate, you will need your User ID and Password to access the opt-out page. Please note that declining to participate won’t impact the number of ads you see, just their potential relevance to you.

For answers to your frequently asked questions, select here.

Sincerely,

Verizon"

Link to Original Source

Comment: This reminds me of the Star Trek episode(TheApple) (Score 1) 106

by GillBates0 (#37622296) Attached to: Could Electron Counts Detect Major Earthquakes?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Apple_(Star_Trek:_The_Original_Series)

On stardate 3715.3, the starship USS Enterprise arrives at Gamma Trianguli VI, a planet that appears to be a tropical paradise with very rich natural resources. Captain James T. Kirk, Dr. McCoy, Ensign Chekov, and Mr. Spock, along with five other survey personnel (Hendorff, Kaplan, Landon, Mallory, and Marple, all of whom are killed except Landon), beam down to the surface to have a look and to make contact with the natives.

They discover a world of poison dart-shooting plants, unstable explosive rocks, and bizarre lightning storms that appear out of cloudless skies. Hendorff is shot by a plant and is killed, and then Spock is hit by another plant's darts when he steps to block them from hitting the Captain. Spock is stunned, and McCoy rushes over to assist, injecting him with Masiform-D serum to counteract the poison. Spock is more resilient to the poison and later recovers on his own.

Realizing there is too much danger, Kirk orders an immediate beam-out, however Mr. Scott reports that the ship's power systems are being drained by an unknown energy field emanating from the planet – they're losing potency in the anti-matter. The Enterprise's transporters don't have enough power to beam anyone back. As if this weren't enough, Spock reports that someone is hiding in the bushes, watching them.

A few minutes later, the sky clouds up and a bolt of lightning snakes down and hits Kaplan, killing him. Shortly thereafter, Mallory calls in on his communicator. He's near the village and says it's "primitive, strictly tribal," but that there's something else of great interest. His communicator fails and he runs back to the landing party to report, but trips over an explosive rock and is killed.

Spock notices they are being watched again. Kirk arranges to decoy and ambush their "observer", finding it to be a shy and frightened primitive humanoid who wears glitter and colorful paints on his skin. Kirk promises not to hurt the curious man and holds him for questioning. The man calms down and identifies himself as Akuta (Keith Andes), chief of the people known as the "Feeders of Vaal". Spock notices that Akuta appears to be in some kind of communication with someone, and points out the small antennae on Akuta's head. Akuta explains that those are his "ears for Vaal", enabling him to interpret Vaal's commands for the people, and that he is "the eyes and the ears of Vaal", who is their god.

Meanwhile, Mr. Scott calls down to inform Kirk that the Enterprise is being pulled down from orbit around the planet by some kind of tractor beam and is unable to break away. Kirk asks Akuta about "Vaal", and requests to be taken to meet him. Akuta agrees and leads the landing team to a large stone dragon head carved into the side of a hill. Akuta points to the structure and indicates that it is Vaal.

The dragon's mouth, with steps cut into a tongue, appears as a kind of doorway. Spock's tricorder indicates that it leads underground. The structure is also protected by a powerful force field. The temple appears to be some type of sophisticated computer, possibly built by an ancient civilization, with a rudimentary artificial intelligence, a thirty-foot force field, and emanating great power. Spock also concludes that it may be the source of the energy draining field that is affecting the Enterprise.

Akuta says Vaal is "sleeping", but will awake "hungry" and might speak to the landing party at that time. He then leads the party to meet his people. They appear as young men and women, but all have a curious, childlike mentality. Kirk points out that the tribe doesn't seem to have any children and asks Akuta why. Akuta doesn't know what a child is, saying that Vaal has forbidden love and copulation, and provides them with "replacements" as they are needed. McCoy scans the tribe and is shocked when he discovers they are ageless and all in perfect health. The party later observes them as they perform a ritualistic "feeding" of Vaal, carrying loads of the explosive rocks down into the underground tunnel. The picture is now clear; the people live only to service Vaal, to dance, and to gather food. They don't even do their own agriculture, since Vaal controls the environment right down to "putting the fruit on the trees".

Mr. Spock observes the symbiosis between the Feeders and Vaal as an "excellent example of reciprocity", but McCoy vehemently disagrees and says the Feeders are not really alive, but stagnating, all their needs and wants provided for by a "hunk of tin". He insists that because they are humanoid, certain "universal standards" apply to them, "the right of humanoids to a free and unchained environment, the right to have conditions which permit growth." Kirk says it's more important to get the Enterprise out of danger.

Throughout their time on the planet, Chekov and Yeoman Martha Landon (Celeste Yarnall) have been showing interest in one another, and during a lull in the action slip away to be alone together. A tribal couple observe the pair and try to imitate their kissing. Vaal is instantly aware of this and radios instructions to Akuta, telling him to gather his people and kill the strangers who have trespassed here. Akuta rounds some of his men and instructs them to kill the landing party by bashing their skulls with clubs.

The landing party goes to Vaal to investigate the structure. Vaal defends itself by striking Spock with a lightning bolt. The Feeders then attack, surrounding the landing party and killing Marple. The landing party fights them off and then detains the Feeders.

Under Scott's command, the Enterprise crew have been switching all systems over to generate a thrust and now, with 15 minutes left, begins its effort to break free. All seems to be working, then the effort fails. Scott says they gained maybe an hour, but they blew nearly every system doing it. Just then, Vaal, perhaps weakened by the starship's efforts, calls for the villagers. Chekov tells the people to stay in the hut, preventing them from feeding Vaal.

Kirk orders the ship's weapons to target the structure and fire on the forcefield, intending to force Vaal to use its reserves. The ship blasts the dragon head with phasers and Vaal uses the reserves to reinforce the forcefield, but cannot hold out: Vaal's glowing eyes go dark; Kirk orders ceasefire; Vaal lights again only briefly.

Scott reports that the tractor beam is no longer pulling the ship, potency is returning to the anti-matter pods, and repairs are under way, so Kirk rehires Scott and orders a scientific and engineering detail down to investigate Vaal's remains.

Akuta and his people are devastated, but are told by Kirk that they are finally free and will soon discover work, birth, death, and the normal everyday ways of life.

Back aboard ship, Spock compares what the Captain has done to giving the primitive people the equivalent of the apple of knowledge and driving them from their Garden of Eden, but Kirk insinuates that Spock's resemblance to the Devil is much more apparent than his own.

Machines certainly can solve problems, store information, correlate, and play games -- but not with pleasure. -- Leo Rosten

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