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Comment: Devices, convenience and lack of knowledge (Score 1) 550

by jcostom (#35470262) Attached to: Why We Should Buy Music In FLAC
3 reasons why this will never happen on any large scale. 1. Portable devices don't do FLAC. No FLAC on the iPod/iPhone/iPad means you just eliminated >90% of the portable device market. 2. Convenience - several folks cited how ripping CDs is inconvenient. So is converting FLAC to something usable by your devices. 3. Lack of knowledge/commitment - be honest. Think about how many people you know would be willing to learn how to do the conversions or commit to doing them. Until those 3 are solved, you're going to be buying online music in MP3 or M4A formats.

Comment: Re:he's right (Score 1) 680

by jcostom (#34640310) Attached to: Mathematics As the Most Misunderstood Subject

The chief problem is one of cultural bias against mathematics. In today's culture, we teach our children that it's ok to "not be a math person," as if the ability to do mathematics requires a certain set of genetic traits. Is it any wonder that the bulk of people you meet every day have no clue as to how to go about logically working through a problem and coming to a decision on it? Is it any surprise how many people can't form a coherent argument, lacking any basis in logic?

Contrast this mindset with other subjects. Suppose I came out with the statement, "I'm just not a history person. I just can't get my head around it." Or, how about, "I'm just not a grammar person. It's all so hard, I'll never use it, so why bother?" I'd be labeled a blithering idiot.

Comment: Re:So sad (Score 1) 142

by jcostom (#34528832) Attached to: Feds To Adopt 'Cloud First' IT Policy
Kind of sad that you don't get that cloud computing is real. Let me break it down for you, simply. A virtualized environment where growing the pool of available compute time is as simply as adding another node to a cluster. Clearly, Captain Obvious realizes there are servers involved, but that's just the lowest layer in the thing. In other news, the Fed Gov sales reps & SEs at VMware are currently weeping with joy.

Comment: Re:A little more (Score 1) 1153

by jcostom (#34081858) Attached to: How Much Math Do We Really Need?
Indeed. Friends of ours keep having this recurring conversation about having another child. Their previous children were difficult babies in different ways. The wife keeps saying things like, "But we'll probably have a good one this time. We're due." I keep pointing out that her chances are neither better, nor worse, which she doesn't seem to quite get, despite being a rather intelligent person. For those who don't get it - the disposition, or ease/difficulty of each child is an independent random variable. The first N outcomes bear absolutely no influence on the N+1th outcome.

Comment: Re:uhhh (Score 4, Informative) 545

by jcostom (#33105896) Attached to: Verizon Changing Users Router Passwords
Interesting.. When we first got FiOS, they were only doing Internet & Phone (TV came 2 years later), and handing out D-Link routers. Since I work for a network manufacturer, the first thing I did was swap it out for a real firewall. 2 years later, they started doing TV in our area, they brought out an Actiontec, wanting to replace my firewall with theirs. Fortunately, I came upon a solution that worked perfectly, and doesn't involve using their router directly (shocked the installers that came out to do our TV install). I've got the Ethernet WAN port of their router plugged into an isolated zone on my firewall (where my Guest WLAN also lives), with the cable wire still connected (so the cable boxes can get guide data). This isolated zone has access to the Internet only, nothing on my "regular" network at all. Works like a champ. Get your FiOS Internet delivered over Cat5 if you can get the installer to do it, then hook up the router that way. The cable boxes don't seem to mind 2 layers of NAT, so I see no reason not to deploy like this.

Comment: Re:Who cares? (Score 1) 353

by jcostom (#30882732) Attached to: Rumor — AT&T Losing iPhone Exclusivity Next Week

And as I understand it, unlimited data is actually cheaper on the iPhone than on other phones (at least, at the time of the launch) due to the fact that the iPhone really needs it and Apple demanded it.

I'm pretty sure you didn't quite understand it correctly then. When the original iPhone was launched, the data plan was $20/month. When the 3G launched, it jumped to $30/month. No change when the 3GS hit the shelves. I've been paying $15/month for unlimited data on AT&T for years now.

Portables (Apple)

Realtek's Wireless Driver Drives Thoughts of an Apple Netbook 136

Posted by timothy
from the can't-get-there-from-here-in-cupertino dept.
Slatterz writes "With Macworld 2009 mere weeks away, one rumour that seemingly won't die is the idea of a Mac OS X Netbook PC. Asking a company to provide OS X drivers for their netbooks has, up until now, been met with silence, and probably a little quaking on the vendor side as they wait for the heavy footsteps of Apple's army of lawyers. It seems, however, that Realtek, who provide the WiFi chip found in the MSI Wind U100, are dipping their toes into the legally iffy world of the Hackintosh. Forum users at MSIWind.Net asked politely for drivers, and after a lot of patience, Beta drivers were provided."
Data Storage

On the State of Linux File Systems 319

Posted by kdawson
from the here-hold-this-for-me dept.
kev009 writes to recommend his editorial overview of the past, present and future of Linux file systems: ext2, ext3, ReiserFS, XFS, JFS, Reiser4, ext4, Btrfs, and Tux3. "In hindsight it seems somewhat tragic that JFS or even XFS didn't gain the traction that ext3 did to pull us through the 'classic' era, but ext3 has proven very reliable and has received consistent care and feeding to keep it performing decently. ... With ext4 coming out in kernel 2.6.28, we should have a nice holdover until Btrfs or Tux3 begin to stabilize. The Btrfs developers have been working on a development sprint and it is likely that the code will be merged into Linus's kernel within the next cycle or two."
Media (Apple)

+ - Apple says iTunes bugs remain on Vista

Submitted by pointbeing
pointbeing (701902) writes "According to MSNBC an update to Apple Inc.'s iTunes music software still hasn't resolved some of the compatibility problems with Microsoft Corp.'s new operating system.

The iTunes program is key to synching music on computers with iPod portable players, and the latest version, iTunes 7.1, comes a month after the iPod and Macintosh computer maker warned PC users against installing Windows Vista until Apple could fix the problems.

Apple removed that outright warning from its Web site on Monday and stated instead that the updated iTunes is recommended for use with most editions of Windows Vista. But Apple also conceded that some glitches, including possible corruption of a user's iPod player upon ejection from a PC, remain. Story continues below advertisement

"Apple is actively working with Microsoft to resolve a few remaining known issues," the posting stated.

Apple representatives declined further comment and would not say how much longer users would have to wait for iTunes to be completely Vista-friendly.

According to the notice posted on Apple's Web site, the previous glitch that prevented Vista users from playing music or video purchased from the online iTunes Store is no longer an issue.

But in addition to the iPod-ejection problem, Apple warned that iTunes 7.1 may still exhibit difficulties synchronizing Windows contacts with an iPod. The text and graphics of iTunes running on a Vista machine also may not be correctly displayed, though resizing the iTunes screen should correct the issue.

Apple also reminded users that iTunes remains unsupported on 64-bit editions of either Windows XP or Windows Vista.

Microsoft has said it is working with a long list of partners, including Apple, to make sure their software is compatible with Vista. The new operating system launched Jan. 30.

Though Microsoft and Apple are partners in some cases — iTunes works with Windows PCs and Microsoft Office has a version for Macs — the two are also longtime rivals. They compete in computer systems, which Microsoft dominates, and in the digital music arena, which Apple dominates."
Portables

+ - Keep your laptop from hurting you

Submitted by
NewsCloud
NewsCloud writes "If you're like me, you spend a lot of time working on your laptop in chaotic ergonomic environs. I've made a list of five simple tips that helped me improve my laptop ergonomics to overcome some recent neck pain and headaches. The arrival of widescreen portables with shorter displays, like the MacBook, are just making these problems worse for people. As beautiful and compact as these devices are, it would be nice to see more industry attention to this issue (my post includes a few suggestions). Slashdot has touched on ergonomics before as well: OSHA Getting Tougher About Ergonomics , Input Solutions for Repetitive Stress Victims? , Making Modifications to Your Computer Workspace? and How Effective are Ergonomic Keyboards? ."
Spam

The Anatomy of Pump n' Dump Stock Spamming 325

Posted by Zonk
from the ugly-in-there dept.
giorgiofr writes "Laura Frieder and Jonathan Zittrain have analyzed pump n' dump spam activity in their paper 'Spam Works: Evidence from Stock Touts and Corresponding Market Activity'. Unbelievably, it appears that spammers are able to achieve a 5% gain on pumped stock before dumping it, along with a dramatic increase in transaction volume of the stock. From the synopsis: ' We suggest that the effectiveness of spammed stock touting calls into question prevailing models of securities regulation that rely principally on the proper labeling of information and disclosure of conflicts of interest to protect consumers, and we propose several regulatory and industry interventions. Based on a large sample of touted stocks listed on the Pink Sheets quotation system, we find that stocks experience a significantly positive return on days prior to heavy touting via spam. Volume of trading responds positively and significantly to heavy touting.'"
Data Storage

+ - Sony says no to porn on Blu-ray Disc

Submitted by jcatcw
jcatcw (1000875) writes "Sony Corp. says it will not allow its disc-replicating subsidiary, Sony DADC Global, to handle adult film titles. The decision could have wide implications for Blu-ray Disc. Some analysts say it could eventually mean that Blu-ray loses out to HD-DVD in the battle to become the next-generation DVD format, in a repeat performance of the Betamax vs VHS competition. Nonetheless, a sequel to the classic Deb Does Dallas should be out on both Blu-ray Disc and HD-DVD this spring."
The Almighty Buck

+ - 'You're hired. Don't forget to bring a chair'

Submitted by
netbuzz
netbuzz writes "You just landed a job at an exciting new Silicon Valley company and the boss asks you to ... bring your own chair? Guess this really isn't the '90s anymore. Yankee parsimony has replaced conspicuous consumption, according to an article in the San Francisco Chronicle. One exec even said "no" to T-shirts. ... Tell me foosball's still OK.

Blog:
http://www.networkworld.com/community/?q=node/1061 9

SF Chron story:
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/ a/2007/01/21/MNG0JNMFQE1.DTL"

Beware of Programmers who carry screwdrivers. -- Leonard Brandwein

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