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Comment: Re:Nonsense (Score 2) 219

by innerweb (#48376305) Attached to: Microsoft Losing the School Markets To iPads and Chromebooks

I remember using Hypercard to help with some classes in grade school in the late 80 and early 90s. It was magic. The students (4th and 5th grade) used it with something called Jasper. It was amazing how much faster the entire class (even the typically slower children) grasped not only the lessons, but the new tools. They excelled more with that tool set than other tool set I had ever seen. The children developed their presentations using the Hypercard stacks and then presented them to the entire grade level. They were almost all completely engaged and focused without the teachers having to keep on them. This worked throughout the years it was used, and unlike every other medium used, the students with very few exceptions never strayed from the subjects when done with Hypecard. It was more popular for most of the students than recess was!

Unfortunately we were given a new IT director in the mid 90s (who is still in the same position) who decided that IBM and MS were the only way to go and that nothing outside of MS was worth anything. So, the Jasper program and the Hypercard application were canned. Nothing else ever came close to that success. We still have the same person in charge, and our IT in the system is based on MS and barely functional outside of administrative use (depending on who you ask, not even performing that well with the administrative tasks).

My youngest child is passing through high school, and I get to hear about the problems they have on a daily basis from the current teachers and administrators. The only school not having any problems is a magnet school that is currently outside of the current IT dept and uses linux and is now including android devices. They do their work in Open Office and create their presentations in HTML. They are group and project focused. The kids coming out of that school routinely wind up getting good academic scholarships and good jobs after college. Now, I am certain you can not blame all of that on software, but given the issues of compatibility of different versions of MS products, many students not being able to afford the MS products (or PCs), I am also certain that the software choices are a central part of the issue.

Comment: Re:Polishing Turds (Score 1) 426

lmao. Even the IT staff where I work, who are heavily pro-windows, MCSEs and such joke about the *reliability* of MS products. Yes, they complain about the relative complexity of setting up some things in Linux, but as of now, we are down two windows servers, replaced with one Linux server. The overall system utilization is almost twice as much, yet the system runs faster.

Yeah, I know, many will say they were doing something wrong, but they are not. MS just eats more resources and handles applications with problems far less well than Linux. The Linux machine has been running non-stop since it was put together early last year, the windows servers still need to bounce every month (which is better than the 2000s with every night). And before you blame the applications poor design, yeah its poor, but the OS is what needs to protect against that. If it can not then the OS has problems. MS just has more of those types of issues than Linux or BSD do.

You can call this whatever you want. It is just how it is.

Comment: Re:Why? (Score 1) 2219

by innerweb (#46187727) Attached to: Slashdot Tries Something New; Audience Responds!

Truly, you nailed it on the head. Demographics. What they need to sell advertising to make money to have an income and pay for the sites expenses. Maybe they want more? From what I see, the Beta says this site will become less. Hopefully I am wrong, but my experience over the years in all products has been the more a company tries to look like another company, the more they are abandoning their current market in favor of a different market. Most people still think the grass is greener in the other yard. If the site heads that way, I will not follow. I will just aggregate my own news and look elsewhere for online social discussions.

Of course, the reality is, as slashdot leaves its old product behind, the market it once served will seek out and likely find or create a replacement. Markets and people tend to do those things and their are many brilliant people in this crowd with enough gumption to do just that.

Comment: Re:2013 (Score 1) 215

by innerweb (#45821465) Attached to: The Startling Array of Hacking Tools In NSA's Armory

It will be made illegal. In many ways it already is. You must submit the key to encrypted material if proper law enforcement asks. Your lines are allowed to be tapped. Your locks are allowed to be broken.

The problem is not the agency, but the paranoid and ruthless people who abuse it. There are many people in law enforcement/intelligence communities who are honest law abiding citizens! There are a few who are not. The question becomes how do we watch the watchers? How do we catch the abusers? I am not sure this will ever be an easy thing to do. Knowledge is the most powerful tool one can have, and for those with an illegal or perverse agenda, the gathering of information provides opportunities to gain leverage over others, advantages in business and political dirt to get what they want. So, they will always try to use the system.

So long as the people who take power (not the elected officials, but the string pullers), have that power, and we the people allow them to, this is how it will be. There is no way at the moment to record anything and expect absolute security. I am not sure your own mind will be safe for much longer. It has always been this way. There is always someone, or a few people conspiring to control as much as possible around them through whatever means, legal, moral, ethical or not to do what they want. Some do it in the name of a god, some in the name of patriotism, some just because it is what they want.

What really needs to be figured out is how to stop these people from doing what they do. I do not think it is possible, as the people stopping them will most likely be those people.

"You need tender loving care once a week - so that I can slap you into shape." - Ellyn Mustard

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