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Comment: They are not axing the Silicon Valley campus (Score 2) 92

by Eric Green (#47943457) Attached to: Microsoft Lays Off 2,100, Axes Silicon Valley Research

In fact, they are expanding it -- they are putting in a brand new data center on the site that was the former Counterpane Security, on LaAvenida across from their SV HQ, and they also have leased a huge building a couple of blocks away on Pear Street. There's also rumors that they're behind the demolishing of an entire block of tilt-ups between LaAvenida and Pear to be replaced by six-story office buildings. In any event Microsoft isn't leaving the Silicon Valley, just Microsoft Research is leaving -- all fifty employees. Every single one of them who can have a job tomorrow by walking down the street to the Googleplex. Not a single one of whom have ever created a product for Microsoft, because Microsoft doesn't create products anymore, they just re-invent other people's products (or their own previously-good products), badly.

Comment: Re:Too expensive (Score 4, Informative) 100

by Trailer Trash (#47940949) Attached to: Dremel Releases 3D Printer

Plenty of cheaper (and probably better) options from Makerbot etc.

Now it it came is at a $400 price point it would be a whole different discussion.

You're not their target market. There are a lot of old-school tinkerers who are familiar with Dremel - and a lot of people who are familiar with Home Depot - who know nothing about 3D printing. Many of those folks would be very interested in 3D printing if they knew about it. So here we are.

I think Dremel is going to raise the stature of 3D printing in an entirely new market and that will quite frankly help every other company out there in this space.

Are Matt's Robot Hexapods Creepy or Cute? (Video) 35

Posted by Roblimo
from the you-put-your-right-foot-in-you-put-your-right-foot-out-you-pick-up-a-human-and-shake-it-all-about dept.
University of Arizona grad student Matt Bunting doesn't come across as a mad scientist. That's a very good thing, because his robot hexapod creations are easy to imagine crawling across the USA in large hordes, devouring everything in their path and using all the electricity they come across to feed their Queen Hexapod, a 3-D printer mounted on a hexapod chassis that turns everything fed to it into more robots. Luckily, the real life Matt is an affable (self-described) "Roboticist, Electrical Engineer, Musician, and Rock Crawler" who freely admits that at this time his robotic creations have no practical application whatsoever. This is probably true, except for the fact that they can liven up a music video like mad, as you can see on YouTube in Pedals Music Video (featuring REAL robots) . Our little video is a lot simpler, of course. In it, we interview Matt and he tells us what he's up to with his robots, and gives some 'how to get started with robotics' advice for budding young engineers. (Alternate Video Link)

Comment: What is really happening here? (Score 1) 943

by Bruce Perens (#47930483) Attached to: ISIS Bans Math and Social Studies For Children
We are in a War on Faith, because Faith justifies anything and ISIS takes it to extremes. But in the end they are just a bigger version of Christian-dominated school boards that mess with the teaching of Evolution, or Mormon sponsors of anti-gay-marriage measures, or my Hebrew school teacher, an adult who slapped me as a 12-year-old for some unremembered offense against his faith.

Comment: Re:Anti-math and anti-science ... (Score 1) 943

by Bruce Perens (#47930331) Attached to: ISIS Bans Math and Social Studies For Children

Hm. The covenant of Noah is about two paragraphs before this part (King James Version) which is used for various justifications of slavery and discrimination against all sorts of people because they are said to bear the Curse of Ham. If folks wanted to use the Bible to justify anything ISIS says is justified by God's words in the Koran, they could easily do so.

18 And the sons of Noah, that went forth of the ark, were Shem, and Ham, and Japheth: and Ham is the father of Canaan.
19 These are the three sons of Noah: and of them was the whole earth overspread.
20 And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard:
21 And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.
22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brethren without.
23 And Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it upon both their shoulders, and went backward, and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were backward, and they saw not their father's nakedness.
24 And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him.
25 And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.
26 And he said, Blessed be the Lord God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.
27 God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.

Comment: People who can think and learn (Score 1) 391

by spaceyhackerlady (#47922291) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Any Place For Liberal Arts Degrees In Tech?

I'm guided by the experience of the airlines. While you must, obviously, have the right sort of pilot's license, they also want a four year university degree. Not because it necessarily enhances your flying, but because it shows you can learn and accomplish things. If you can learn and accomplish things, and know your way around computers, I'd love to talk to you.

The big problem at most places I've worked is getting promising resumes past HR people who only count buzzwords.


Comment: Let's be different (Score 2) 93

by spaceyhackerlady (#47920245) Attached to: New Release of MINIX 3 For x86 and ARM Is NetBSD Compatible

I've followed Minix development with interest. The internal architecture is different from most OSs out there. Not different for the sake of being different, but different to show different solutions to problems. The way we do things in Linux et al is powerful, but it's not the only way.

I haven't come up with a compelling reason to use it in my work (yet... :-), but I install each new release on a virtual machine and play with it.


Comment: Re:Is this technically impossible - no. (Score 5, Insightful) 190

People are conflating the "iMessage & Facetime" part of the quote with the "email" part. He says that they cannot (that is to say "do not have the ability") to read iMessage & Facetime. He then states that they do not read your email. People are pulling the "cannot" along with them when they read that sentence, but it doesn't say that they cannot read email, only that they choose to not read your email.

Your description of the iMessage encryption is good, but what the original poster said was true given a few constraints. So let me restate it in a logically consistent manner: if I can read my icloud email on any browser then apple also has the ability to read it.

But, but, maybe they encrypt it using your password on their server! If they did, "change password" would always require the old password and if you forgot your password your email would be lost forever. So, no, they're not doing that.

The bottom line is that if they can show me my email in any browser (which they can) then they can also read it trivially.

This isn't inconsistent with Cook's statement - he merely says that they choose to not do that.

Comment: That's interesting data but.... (Score 2) 164

by Trailer Trash (#47919513) Attached to: Developing the First Law of Robotics

The real question is "how well do normal humans perform the same task?" My guess is "no better than the robot". Making those decisions is difficult enough when you're not under time pressure. It can be very complex, too. Normally I'd want to save the younger of the two if I had to make the choice, but what if the "old guy" is "really important"? Or something like that.

The Courts

Court Rules the "Google" Trademark Isn't Generic 156

Posted by samzenpus
from the what's-in-a-name dept.
ericgoldman writes Even though "googling" and "Google it" are now common phrases, a federal court ruled that the "Google" trademark is still a valid trademark instead of a generic term (unlike former trademarks such as escalator, aspirin or yo-yo). The court distinguished between consumers using Google as a verb (such as "google it"), which didn't automatically make the term generic, and consumers using Google to describe one player in the market, which 90%+ of consumers still do.

SparkFun Works to Build the Edison Ecosystem (Video) 75

Posted by Roblimo
from the more-tiny-electronics-for-makers-and-builders-to-make-and-build-with dept.
Edison is an Intel creation aimed squarely at the maker and prototype markets. It's smaller than an Arduino, has built-in wi-fi, and is designed to be used in embedded applications. SparkFun is "an online retail store that sells the bits and pieces to make your electronics projects possible." They're partnering with Intel to sell the Edison and all kinds of add-ons for it. Open source? Sure. Right down to the schematics. David Stillman, star of today's video, works for SparkFun. He talks about "a gajillion" things you can do with an Edison, up to and including the creation of an image-recognition system for your next homemade drone. (Alternate Video Link)

Comment: Re:Not just Reno (Score 2) 444

He says "How retarded can you be that you believe anyone is burning freshly cut trees, anyway?"

Did you catch the word "anyone" in there? Right in the middle?

He's calling the guy above him retarded for believing that *anyone* would want to burn freshly cut trees, yet there definitely is talk of doing just that and it's easy to find with Google.

Comment: Re:External IP (Score 2) 208

by Trailer Trash (#47889263) Attached to: Turning the Tables On "Phone Tech Support" Scammers

... Depends if your IP address is dynamic or not. In my case, all I have to do is reset the DSL modem/router and, presto ! New IP!

I am more concerned about the legality of it. Running a live exploit on their network may make some ISPs fidgety. Also not sure about the position of law enforcement agencies...

Look up the "clean hands doctrine". There's a reason that you don't see street gangs suing a drug supplier over a missing shipment....

Comment: Re:Not just Reno (Score 2, Informative) 444

They are 'green plants' because they clean the exhaust.
And no they don't burn biomass. How retarded can you be that you believe anyone is burning freshly cut trees, anyway?

The real question is "How retarded can you be that you make a statement like that without researching reality first?"

"First, just like fossil fuels, when trees are burned in power plants, the carbon they have accumulated is released into the atmosphere. However, because freshly cut wood is nearly half water by weight, a lot of energy is required to boil off this water before useful energy can be generated. This makes biomass facilities far less efficient than fossil fuel."

They're even using your exact nomenclature.


Yes, the idea has been out there for awhile - that you haven't heard of it isn't surprising. But that you make an ass of yourself over it says a lot about you.

FORTUNE'S FUN FACTS TO KNOW AND TELL: A cucumber is not a vegetable but a fruit.