Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment Re: Cheap, Plentiful, Available -- Choose 2 (Score 1) 142

There's nothing capitalistic about the American cellular market - it is so heavily regulated there is effectively no real competition like you'd see in a real free market. Of course these 'regulations' are nothing more than protectionist schemes bought and paid for. This chronyism is not capitalism in anyway way, shape, or form but rather some classical conservative feudalism and neoliberal socialism bastard child.

Comment Re: truth is... (Score 1) 93

If PWM isn't a true 'analog' output, what is? I can think of no better or simpler way to implement a DAC - with a lower level of error and greater precision - than PWM through a low pass filter. Or does this board simply hide those details from you - I admittedly am not up to date with these hobbyist boards.

Comment Re:Guilty (Score 2) 102

[Citation Needed]

Outside of government propaganda, I haven't seen much supporting the case that drugs like cocaine have a higher rate of abuse than alcohol. Furthermore, alcohol is the only drug that I'm aware of with withdrawal symptoms that includes death.

At the end of the day, violently throwing people in cages at gun point for getting high on substances you don't approve of is far more harmful to both the drug user and society as a whole. This whole argument of which drug is more or less dangerous is stupid because the drug prohibition has done far more damage to our society than recreational drug use.

Comment Re:Well there ya go (Score 2) 496

Actually, it is very much so about the First Amendment. The whole purpose of DD publishing these designs was to not just make a statement, but a very political statement. They couldn't have nearly as effectively made their statement without releasing these designs, making it critical to their political speech and thus deserving of highest level of protection. Given this, I fail to see how the ITAR or any similar law would mean shit in a court challenge - remember the constitution trumps any lowly piece of legislation or treaty. IOW, the ITAR can go fuck itself.

PS - Censorship doesn't work on the internet

Comment Re: Or... (Score 3, Interesting) 318

There is nothing wasteful or unusual about Android's file system, it is perfectly normal for an embedded system like a phone. The objective is to make the device as durable as possible, immune to improper shutdown, negligent users, and other such things. For this purpose the core bits are on a partition mounted RO, with the user data stored on a separate partition. Generally the way you'd update such systems is to replace the entire RFS, but since that would require the OEMs efforts, Android uses the system it does. Maybe it's not ideal, but we can update a good amount of functionality without having to worry about battery pulls bricking the phone. Complaining that your old, early generation phone doesn't support the newest software is ridiculous. We are with mobile devices where we we with PCs 15+ years ago. You are running a 486 in an age of Pentiums. Not only does the Nexus One lack storage, it has a slow SoC and only 512 MB of memory. And, IMHO, it was the biggest pile of dog shit to wear the Nexus title (yes I've owned one).

Comment Re:What about GPL? (Score 1) 190

It's not, it's Apache. Plus, even if you release your code under a GPL, you are under no obligation to only release future version under the same license. Heck, you can release the same version under different licenses if you wanted, ala Qt. If you own the code, you dictate the license, not the other way around.

Now, they would need to release some GPL'd code that's not theirs, namely the Linux kernel and some utilities, but the bulk of it can be closed forever.

Comment Re:More Information Please. (Score 1) 466

I'm sorry, 'bullying' is not a good reason to curtail free speech. Why should my speech be curtailed because of your feelings? Censoring speech for the sake of making others feel good is a very slippery slope since what is and is not 'bullying' is entirely subjective. If you think your feelings are more important than the speech rights of others, maybe the US isn't the place for you to live.

I fail to see what she could have possibly said that wasn't protected speech. Taking your example to the next level, "I hate the president because he sucks and should be shot" is 100% protected speech in the US.

And yes, you know this is /., a good number of us were picked on constantly growing up and still strongly oppose anti-bullying campaigns. Some of us were also involved in fights because of it, myself included. I remember how upset it made me at times, but I still think a very strict and ridged protection of speech is far more important than protecting my feelings.

Honestly though, it sounds like you need to grow a pair and stand up for yourself or you will be walked on your entire life and that is no one's fault but your own. The people who pick on you do so out of their own insecurities, don't feed into it and give it validation, instead be confident in yourself.

Comment Re:Terminology (Score 0) 404

You know those patents you're complaining about apply to Flash too, right? And you have to pay Adobe an ass ton of money to generate Flash content - the viewer may be free, but the authoring tools certainly are not. With HTML5 I can generate my own content without needing any expensive proprietary tools.

Let me give it to you from a Linux user's perspective - I don't give 2 shits about software patents, there are plenty of countries in the world that agree with this notion and allow free distribution of software that 'infringes' on their bullshit IP claims. While my country fails to see how bat-shit crazy software patents are, I am still able to easily get all the tools I need to do whatever the fuck I want. Being that I am just an individual without any profit motive, I will never be sued by these ass clowns - they'd just be pissing their money away if they tried. If they want to ass rape Google for royalties to encode video in H.264 on YouTube, that's lame, but whatever.

Now with HTML5, I just stroll on over to a website with my open source web browser, and open source codecs, and everything works all dandy like - doesn't matter if I'm on x86, AMD64, armel, SPARC, whatever, it'll work just fine. The HTML5 content has a seamless feel in the browser and everything is nice and smooth and peachy.

With Flash, on the other hand, I'm limited to x86 and just recently was blessed with AMD64 support. To top it off, it's buggy and slow as shit and they even throw in a free monthly remote code execution vulnerability. It doesn't pay nice with the rest of the system and has this 'hacked pile of shit' feel to it (full screen doesn't work right, not a 'seamless' experience in the browser, requires some ghetto ass scripting to install using my distros package manager, etc). Gnash is garbage and isn't worth the trouble.

Should I care more about the patent issues? Probably. But in all honesty the technical issues are a far bigger concern of mine, and I have this optimistic attitude that our outdated IP protection nightmare will eventually come to an end. And even if it doesn't, as an end user it doesn't really impact me directly, or at least not enough to irritate me as much as Flash does.

Comment Re:BLECK! (Score 1) 647

I'm sure you realize the article is talking about the default behavior of Gnome3 applications, and not all applications in general. And if you, or a distro maintainer, doesn't like the default behavior of something, just change it - it's really easy to do.

The thing about Gnome3 that many people fail to realize - mainly because there aren't any cute dialog boxes to do it - is how flexible and extensible it is. If you don't like some default behavior, there are plenty of extensions out there to make it just how you want it. Instead, we have all these self-proclaimed Linux experts who spend 3 minutes playing clickity-click before determining Gnome3 locks them into their new paradigm and isn't flexible. Yeah, maybe they shouldn't have rushed Gnome3 to market and waited for the extension store and all the associated GUI elements to be completed to make the noobs happy.

When I see people like yourself complain about it, it's quite obvious you never really gave it a chance or took the time to learn it. Yeah, it's different, the default behavior is questionable in some places, and it took some time to learn the new muscle memory of moving around in the environment. I had to do a bit of tweaking to get everything how I liked it, and there still are a few quirks that irritate me, but I now prefer Gnome3 and wouldn't go back.

There very much are multiple desktops in Gnome3, and I'm not sure I understand what you mean by bury them - they are quite prominent and easy to use. By default, the number of desktops is dynamic (which I actually prefer), but if you prefer a static number, that's easy to change.

Comment Re:Battery (Score 4, Interesting) 348

1) EFBs typically run on ship power during flight
2) An aircraft will have at least 2 EFBs in operation at a time - pilot and copilot. Some aircraft have a 3rd EFB for a center screen.
3) Many of the dedicated EFB tablets that have been in use for years are powered by NiMh batteries (out of fear of Li-Ion) and last less than an hour on a charge. Since they rarely run on batteries, this has not been much of an issue to the best of my knowledge.

Comment I hope they go with something else (Score 2) 348

I work in the corporate aviation side and deal with EFBs on a regular basis, including iPads. EFBs are nothing new, and the iPad certainly isn't the first such device on the market - in the past they have been mostly Windows tablets. The main benefit of iPads is the ease of use and support. Windows based EFBs are a support nightmare just like any other Windows machine (user malfunctions mostly), and the iPads make this much easier as they are fairly idiot-proof.

And that's where the benefits end. They simply are not designed for the rugged environment of a cockpit and flight crews tend to be about as dainty as gorilla. My biggest complain is the proprietary connector - it's weak, flimsy and breaks easily, and then is a challenge to replace as it is not a standard connector. The screens are decent for 'consumer grade' devices, but sunlight readablitly is not as good as some of dedicated EFB products out there. I'm also not aware of any 'Made for iPad' devices that allow interfacing with a ship's avionics to acquire weather, flight plan and position data as we do with Windows tablets.

Now I hate Windows EFBs with a burning passion, but I just don't think iPads are appropriate for professional aviators. We've been supporting them in the field for less than a year and they are simply not holding up. IMO a rugged Android tablet with appropriate Android Open Accessory avionics interfacing would be a much better solution, but I don't know what is out there to this end. Everyone wants their iPads and doesn't care to hear about anything else...

Comment Comments Closed (Score 1) 525

I wanted to reply to Mr Sherman to comment about how his industry is dying and PIPA/SOPA is just another government bailout trying to protect an outdated and failing business model. Unfortunately, the comments are closed on the article - I guess he got tired of all the comments explaining in great detail how he's a complete and total dipshit.

Comment Re:Assumptions (Score 1) 240

Never had a problem with the 515 pin VFBGA on the OMAP3530, that dinky Broadcom package looks easy in comparison. BGAs and POPs aren't all that hard, they're actually fairly easy and never need any kind of touching up since they provide their own solder. Just flux and go.

And where did you read it was 0.3mm? From the picture it looks like 0.5mm on the POP side and 0.65mm on the board side to me. Can't find a datasheet though. Doesn't matter, my 0.5mm limit is with regard to comfortably soldering individual exposed leads which isn't a concern with BGAs.

Again, my only point is that people can assemble these types of components, and it drives me nuts when ass holes like yourself who have clearly never tried it proclaim that it is impossible. Please, stop speaking out of your ass.

And just to be clear, I am not suggesting the Raspberry Pi should be sold as a kit - if they don't want to deal with that headache, then that is perfectly reasonable and I wouldn't buy one anyway.

Comment Re:Assumptions (Score 1, Informative) 240

This is totally incorrect. You only need an oven, stencil, and fresh solder paste if you're doing large quantities of boards. Doing small quantities of boards by hand is fairly easy with some practice. All you need is a syringe with SP, a basic ($100) soldering station, a cheap ($100) hot air rework station, some solder wick, and a flux pen and you can solder just about anything.

I can comfortably and reliably solder parts down to 0.5mm pitch using these tools and I do it all the time with great success. I actually think it is easier than stuffing through-hole parts and generally try to stick with SMDs in my designs. And the smaller the better.

I have a big ass cartridge of Kester No-Clean 63/37 paste that has been sitting in the bottom of my refrigerator for the past year and a half. I fill syringes with it and it still worked just fine the other day. I often need to touch up some of the finer pitched parts by hand, but that isn't much of a problem in small quantities. Having to hand solder a few thousand boards wouldn't be acceptable, and that's where you need that oven, stencil, and fresh SP.

Would I want a kit of the Pi? Probably not. While I enjoy stuffing PCBs and find it quite relaxing, a good chunk of that enjoyment comes from it being my own design and having to do my own programming and troubleshooting to get it to work. The point is I think the suggestion that SMD assembly is outside the reach of hobbyists is total ignorant bullshit.

Comment Re:Nice from a tech point of view, *BUT*... (Score 1) 226

Why is this modded insightful? This process is no different than an animal eating the seaweed and exhaling CO2. No 'new' carbon made its way into the atmosphere, it is just existing carbon making its way through the carbon cycle. By your logic, we should kill off all animal life on the planet (including ourselves) to stop these horrible horrible acts of combustion.

We all like praise, but a hike in our pay is the best kind of ways.