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Comment: Re:Google control the value of the TLDs (Score 1) 62

by ledow (#47952873) Attached to: Amazon Purchases<nobr> <wbr></nobr>.buy TLD For $4.6 Million

Google won the search wars because it ignored what content providers thought should be top of the listings (but let them buy ads), and put what search USERS should be top of the listings. That's how it got where it is and why it's stayed where it is. That's why there are entire businesses based around trying to get your site to the top of Google without getting chucked off their listings - because it's not as easy as just asking, or paying, or tricking Google.

Hence, if ".buy" suddenly starts getting to tops of listings where you have no reason or interest of it being there, then Google will suffer - as well as ".buy"

Decent search made domain names obsolete. I don't even know the domain of many of my favourite sites, but I know an exact Google search that will list them in the top 10 if I ever need them (e.g. I lose my bookmarks). That's why I don't get why people still are buying anything more than a single, relevant domain for themselves.

Seriously, what difference do you get in search rankings if you search from a mobile? Google knows you're on mobile. You can search for mobile terms. Now how many of those results are actually of ".mobi" sites?

TLD's and domain names are money-grabs. They only have any effect on "dumb" search engines that are already selling your entire front page to the highest bidder.

Comment: Re:Underspecced? (Score 1) 103

by smellsofbikes (#47949145) Attached to: Dremel Releases 3D Printer

What I tell people who are thinking about 3d printing is: if you have a specific project, that needs 3d printing, for which going through shapeways or something is either uneconomical (because you're going to need six tries to get your widget dimensioned correctly) or too slow (you're going to be making a ton of different prototype widgets) then a home 3d printer may be a good idea for you. Otherwise, you'll get it, print an octopus and a tardis, and then it'll gather dust and you'll kick yourself for having spent the money.
With that said, if you do have a specific project, and you use the printer for that, you will get enough time on it, and more specifically on using the software to make models, that you will have basically mastered the learning curve, and suddenly you'll be printing a lot of other things, that you didn't ever even think about making.
I'm co-owner of a plus-size mendelmax 2. We got it to print prototype circuit board adapters so we could stick x board on y piece of hardware. Once we'd gotten that hammered out, the other guy who owns it has printed a plug for his sewer drain, a rat trap for live-catch, buckets for a tiny pelton wheel generator, and I've printed lathe-holding tools, lcd bezels, automated printed circuit board test fixtures, and most of a fuel injection intake manifold for my car. We use it for everything.
But you need to have that first big complicated project that you have to get finished, to get to the point where it is a reliable tool, rather than a gadget.

With all THAT said, you'll always want a larger printer. But if the printer you have can cover 95% of your jobs, that's a whole lot better than none at all. Based on the stuff I've made, this printer could handle 95% of the demands I have, and there's always shapeways for the other 5%.

Comment: Re:Encryption (Score 1) 125

by ledow (#47943329) Attached to: Next Android To Enable Local Encryption By Default Too, Says Google


But, please, what makes you think that Apple, or even Samsung, aren't doing exactly the same?

Apple can install stuff on your device when it feels like it. In fact, you have even less control over an Apple devices and its whims. You'll happily plug in your Exchange details into the Apple device, you have no idea what it is or isn't doing with that. Apple doesn't even have permission systems. You either install, or not. And Apple spyware is just as - if not more - rampant.

So, your concern is really about modern devices, not anything to do with the meat of the story - encryption.

P.S. With Android, you can see the source, and build from clean source, without any Google services whatsoever if you want. People have done it for you. Almost every big-selling Android phone is supported. You can get root access and check everything you like. And then encryption really means something.

Comment: Re:Underspecced? (Score 3, Insightful) 103

by smellsofbikes (#47941117) Attached to: Dremel Releases 3D Printer

Is it me or does it sound a bit underwhelming for $1000? I don't mean the price is non-competitive, it just seems like I'd want something more capable if I was going to take the plunge. Burn $1000 and in a week won't you be hankering for a much more capable machine?

Yes. And spending two months debugging bed/head temperatures, print and extruder speed, and layer thickness, so your prints consistently stay solid and adhered to the bed rather than peeling, will be totally invisible to you because that $1K presumably means someone else already did that. There's a lot of value in getting something that's been debugged, and that's particularly the case for extrusion-based FDM 3d printers. It's okay to be hankering for a better machine, particularly if you're already printing. The best 3d printer is the one that's actually building parts for you.

Comment: Just Apple? (Score 0, Troll) 205

by ledow (#47903301) Attached to: Sapphire Glass Didn't Pass iPhone Drop Test According to Reports

Anecdotal or not, almost everyone I come into contact with who has an iPhone is either living with a smashed screen or had to take it back to Apple to get the screen replaced after smashing it.

I do not see as many, if any, of non-Apple phones that are smashed as easily.

Personally, maybe I'm just not as clumsy, but I've dropped my phone any number of times and even kicked it accidentally as I dropped it and smashed it into a wall... and it wasn't even scratched. I don't think I've ever managed to break a phone like that, and I've had some spectacular drops in the past (plastic covers and batteries flying all over the room, but just put it back together and it worked).

Comment: Sigh. (Score 5, Informative) 230

by ledow (#47902869) Attached to: School Installs Biometric Fingerprint System For Cafeteria

I work in IT in English schools.

Welcome to a decade ago.

I've worked in several schools that have biometric library systems and the move to cashless canteens has been underway for years (I've never happened to work with one, but that's not because they aren't around).

It is sold as preventing bullying, stopping you having to pay for the cards, etc. The privacy implications came up 10-15 years ago. Nobody, especially parents, really cared.

Hell, five years ago, my daughter's creche had fingerprint entry (I refused to take part, mainly because I saw it as insecure given I could gummi-bear the reader and enter as whoever came in last, but I was apparently the first to complain).

Old news people. It's already in schools all over the UK. There was minimal protest.

Comment: Re:ZFS - faster IO on larger pools (Score 1) 366

by ledow (#47891259) Attached to: The State of ZFS On Linux

1) Yes, it's a general features of RAID's. Multiple devices are reading the data, the "fastest finger first" wins.

2) File server only dependent on your disk format, you mean? I happen to agree here but, if you're doing it at the FS level, then just a standardised RAID layout (such as Linux md / LVM) is the same thing. The non-standard formats that tie you into hardware do so for a reason - the hardware RAID provides things that no software RAID can, sheer speed. (Though, please note, I've happily run Linux software RAID on server-end hardware in production systems without any performance problems).

3) 3 disks dying out of 11? RAID6+1 will actually do better (I think... I can't do the maths just now).

ZFS is cool, don't get me wrong, but it's basically just a RAID fs. The Merkel tree journalling trick just saves having to have battery backup, but whether it works like that in real life failures is another matter entirely.

Comment: Re:hmmmm (Score 5, Insightful) 275

by ledow (#47875821) Attached to: California Tells Businesses: Stop Trying To Ban Consumer Reviews

I don't care how many 1-star reviews a place get. You know what matters? How they respond to them.

I'd rather go to a place that replies politely to every negative review than one that ignores them entirely. And if they are genuinely fake, things such as "We have no record of your stay, but we're sorry that you had trouble" speak a thousand times more to what's actually happening then any amount of ignorance.

Everywhere gets bad reviews. You cannot have perfection. What matters is how you deal with when you fuck up.

Comment: Re:is it just me... (Score 1) 471

by smellsofbikes (#47874829) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Smartwatch Apps Could You See Yourself Using?

or is there a hidden strategy of increasing the phone sizes of new iphones to deliberately make them unwieldy, and create a problem which can be "solved" with a smart-watch? ie, more crap to sell.

Yes, and it started about five years ago. That's when my wife and several of my other female friends began complaining that phones no longer fit in the pockets of women's clothing that isn't made by Lululemon or something. They got things like the HP Veer precisely because it was still the size of an old flipphone and managed to fit in the roughly six cubic inches that manufacturers have decided is the amount of pocket space they will provide for women's clothes below size 2. Then all those went away as everyone raced to make phones that are really tablets, so now they're buying smartwatches and keeping the cellphone in the purse or in the desk. Sure, it's a big awkward batphone, especially on someone who's a size zero, but it's a lot less ginormous than any cellphone you can buy in the US, as far as we can tell. (If anyone can suggest a cellphone that's roughly the size of a Veer but is still supported, I'd love to know about it.)

Comment: Re:What I think would be most useful (Score 1) 471

by smellsofbikes (#47874753) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Smartwatch Apps Could You See Yourself Using?

>The only ant+ holdouts I can think of are cycling power meters. But those are very expensive bordering on niche sports training products.

I wonder about this. Out of the 20-some people I ride with regularly, only one person has an ANT+ accessory that isn't a power meter. Or, to put that another way, everyone who has ANT+ bits has multiple bits, of which one is a power meter. However, that is likely because of sample bias: they're all racers. But of the non-racers I know, none of them has cadence and if they have HRM they're using watch-based ones like Polar's.

>Speaking of exotic bike stuff. I know the Di2 electronic shifters support ant+.

DI2 supports a shimano-proprietary version of ANT+, apparently:
We have access to ANT+ hardware at work, since we make it, and we haven't managed to talk to my coworker's DA Di2 yet. It raises some interesting possibilities, of automatic shifting (and of the team manager/coach deciding when you should start your sprint, messaging you, and managing your shifting. Very Triplets-of-Belleville.)

Comment: Re:My emails are not on it (Score 1) 203

by ledow (#47874135) Attached to: 5 Million Gmail Passwords Leaked, Google Says No Evidence Of Compromise

Same for me, same for my brother.

Someone's just collected 5m GMail addresses from somewhere.

To be honest, it's more likely that my address has been sold by a Google employee - there's no way I should be getting as much spam as I do to an address that's completely unadvertised and which is only the end-point of various domain forwarding.

Password compromise too? Just sounds like someone's collated all the compromised data from other websites etc. they could find, rather than hacked into GMail somehow.

Comment: Re:Thank you for finding the flaw (Score 1) 142

by ledow (#47854031) Attached to: Feds Say NSA "Bogeyman" Did Not Find Silk Road's Servers

Security software cannot fix stupidity.

In this case, one of the scripts on a Tor service pulled data from and thus advertised it's globally-addressable IP address.

Sure, they can improve their processes and pull that script and replace it with a Tor-compatible version - but Tor can't detect this kind of stupidity and fix it for you. If you're stupid enough to put your home address on a Tor service, there's nothing Tor can do about that either.

The most interesting thing about this story is that all the "Tor was somehow broken by a omnipotent government agency" nonsense actually boiled down to "Idiots were giving out their own IP over a Tor service providing illegal content" (which is more often than not the case - I'm not at all convinced that most countries actually have the talent and resources to do what people claim they can, let alone that they routinely do them).

This either proves, when used properly, how effective Tor is, or ineffective the relevant agency is against Tor.

Honestly, I don't care too much about the detail. I don't support the illegal activity that this service was built upon. But I find it worrying that they were that stupid, and that it was that easy to "find" them, and also that the relevant agencies don't seem to have made much progress at all since the days of GCHQ.

All I see in the modern day is unbreakable maths stopping (or severely hindering) anyone but the most stupid people from being caught. I see that as both a good thing (encryption, etc. doing what it was designed to do, and implemented strongly) and a bad thing (our governments are still unable to stop such services because they don't have the talent to infiltrate them).

Remember: Silly is a state of Mind, Stupid is a way of Life. -- Dave Butler