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Comment: Good news for Leopard users (Score 1) 99

I don't think any software vendor should be required to support software forever, but there is a difference between withdrawing support and disabling a product without ample prior warning. They blew the rollout, but it looks like they're going to make amends, at least for the Leopard crowd. Hopefully, they'll learn a thing or two about the value of good corporate communication as well.

+ - Skype Blocks Customers Using OS-X 10.5.x and Earlier 1

Submitted by lurker412
lurker412 (706164) writes "Yesterday, and without previous warning, all Mac users running Leopard or earlier versions of OS-X have been locked out of Skype. Those customers are given instructions to update, but following them does not solve the problem. The Skype Community Forum is currently swamped with complaints. A company representative active on the forum said "Unfortunately we don't currently have a build that OS X Leopard (10.5) users could use" but did not answer the question whether they intend to provide one or not. I had a chat exhange with a Skype rep, who told me that not only would there be no version for Leopard, but that refunds were not going to be given for those with paid balances "...outside of 15 day cooling off period," whatever that means. I'm not assuming that the chatbot really speaks for the company. I understand that software vendors cannot be expected to support products forever. But would a bit of advance warning be too much to ask?"

Comment: Re:Creative Suite Six will be Adobe's XP (Score 3, Interesting) 74

by lurker412 (#47018965) Attached to: Adobe Creative Cloud Is Back
For me personally, you're quite right, though I'm on CS5 and will stay there for the foreseeable future. I'm an amateur photographer and have no need to keep up with the latest and greatest effects for graphic artists. There are a lot of Adobe customers like me, and many of us preferred the old model, where we could pay to upgrade when the new features seemed worth it. The new model makes sense for companies and design pros who (think they) always need the latest. They probably will save money. I'm not interested in the lock-in the new model imposes.

There is a lot of misunderstanding about the "cloudiness" of CC. The recent outage didn't take all the subscribers down, at least as long as they are using local storage for their work. The software runs locally. It would actually be a step forward if, say, they came up with some killer algorithms that require super-computer power to run and gave subscribers access to those cycles in the cloud. But currently, the cloud is mainly used for license validation (periodically) and software updates.

Adobe is leaving money on the table by not accommodating the customers who used to go for every other or every third update. I expect that within a couple of years they will realize this and come up with some sort of hybrid subscription/perpetual license scheme.

Comment: New York Review of Books (Score 1) 361

by lurker412 (#46160835) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Online News Is Worth Paying For?
While it's not a news site, among other things it provides thoughtful analysis of current affairs and cultural trends. Some of it is available for free, but subscribing gives you access to all content, current and past. It's not light reading, but Vishnu knows we have more than enough of that the Web.

Comment: Re:Not so fast... (Score 1) 356

by lurker412 (#44832499) Attached to: Can the iPhone Popularize Fingerprint Readers?
"And yes, until it broke, I loved the fingerprint sensor on my laptop."

My old Thinkpad T61 had a fingerprint reader, which worked maybe half the time. So (naturally) I stopped even trying to use it after a week. Apple's implementation may be better, but if it's no better than Siri, well, nothing to see here...

Comment: And the rest of the world? (Score 5, Insightful) 202

by lurker412 (#44790265) Attached to: Time For X-No-Wiretap HTTP Header?
Few American commentators seem to be questioning the unstated assumption that spying on non-Americans is perfectly OK, even if there is no reasonable cause for suspicion. By that logic, it's perfectly OK for other countries to spy on all Americans.

Aren't we all entitled to a little privacy?

Comment: Re:zero evidence (Score 2) 182

by lurker412 (#43720059) Attached to: World Press Photo Winner Accused of Photoshopping
There are many ways to lie with a camera, and most of them don't rely on Photoshop--framing, cropping, timing, staging or simple selection from a number of shots. Rules tend to be arbitrary--composites may be utter fictions, but they can also be stitched panoramas that provide a wider view and greater detail than the lens/camera combination could provide in a single frame. Film shots were dodged and burned in the darkroom long before digital photography was created. Digital has merely made manipulation easier than it used to be. The only meaningful question is, did the photographer stay within the bounds set by the rules of the competition? Producing the raw file should provide a conclusive answer.

Comment: Sorry to rain on your parade but... (Score 1) 514

by lurker412 (#42335107) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: 2nd Spoken/Written Language For Software Developer?
If you are not planning on moving/working abroad, you're not going to learn any second language well enough to be very useful. People with technology skills are rather mobile and the largest tech firms have foreign subsidiaries. So the big employers have no shortage of native speakers of the most commonly spoken languages. In the meantime, machine translation is getting better all the time and while it may never do poetry or literature very well, it will certainly be good enough for most business purposes in the not very distant future. I wouldn't expect adding a new language to change your employment potential much, but there are many other good reasons to do so.

Comment: Manipulation just one part of the problem (Score 2) 72

by lurker412 (#41648191) Attached to: The History of Lying With Images
Manipulation--whether in the darkroom or with a computer--is only one of the ways images can mislead. Scenes may be staged. Even when they are not, framing an image in the viewfinder and deciding when to release the shutter determine what small bit of reality is rendered. It may or may not be an honest, representative sample. Every photographer knows that you don't need Photoshop to lie with a camera.

Brain damage is all in your head. -- Karl Lehenbauer

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