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Comment: IPads for sure... (Score 3, Informative) 180

by masdog (#42156687) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Tablets For Papers; Are We There Yet?
The iPad has several good PDF reader apps, including some that do annotating. There are a few free PDF readers like BlueFire, but the best one that I've seen is a $5 one called Goodreader for iPad. With the advent of free online storage like DropBox, SkyDrive, or Box, you can put your PDFs online and just download them when you want to read them. I'm sure some of the better Android tablets will also do a pretty good job as a PDF reader, but I haven't gotten my hands on a Galaxy, XyBoard, or Nexus to play with them.

Comment: Re:Why fit in? (Score 1) 659

by masdog (#37671542) Attached to: How Do You Educate a Prodigy?

2)Ham radio is not a good idea for socialization.

I disagree. If you live in an area with at least one active HAM Radio club, there are plenty of opportunities for socializing in meat-space. HAM Groups regularly meet (at least monthly) and they are often involved in community service by providing communications services to special events. It would be worth looking into, at least.

Comment: Re:Is that way their store is sparse? (Score 1) 125

by masdog (#37653534) Attached to: B&N Yanks DC Titles After Exclusive Amazon Deal

I can only imagine that computer books are kind of a pain in the butt for bookstores. They get obsolete really fast these days; I'd probably want to reduce my inventory of them, too.

(Disclaimer: I haven't set foot in a Barnes & Noble in five-plus years. There just aren't any at the malls I go to.)

Plus this is a subject area where it makes sense to buy an ebook. Not only can you easily bring your reference library with you on a thumbdrive or an ebook reader, but some publishers (O'Reilly) give you very good discounts to upgrade to the latest version of the book.

Comment: Re:Or Apple (Score 1) 156

by masdog (#37150034) Attached to: HP's Shift On PCs Could Boost Acer, Dell and Lenovo

Because HP says the fact people are increasingly ditching PC's for tablets (read: iPads) factored in their decision :

"The tablet effect is real, and sales of the TouchPad are not meeting our expectations," Apotheker says, explaining the movement of consumers from PCs to tablets as one of the problems with the PC division. So H-P is exploring options for its unit that "may include separation through spinoff or other transactions."

Basically they're saying iPads are where the money and future growth are and they failed to create even a beachhead in that market so they're getting out.

That seems like a very shortsighted move because HP only acquired Palm last year and has only had a competitor to the iPad on the market for a month and a half. To kill your largest division because your 1st generation tablet didn't make an immediate splash against a product from a company that has a cult-like following tells me that HP's management isn't willing to work to develop a product that they purchased just to enter this market, and they deserve to fail as a result.

Also, Dell and Lenovo may take HP's share of the corporate workstation market and Acer the low-to-mid range laptop but Apple will probably take a healthy bite out of the more profitable high end laptop share (what HP had left of it) and high end PC. The volume isn't really important, the fact that there isn't any money left in being top dog volume-wise is the whole reason they are getting out.

While there isn't a lot of profits left to squeeze out of that market, it is still the company's largest division, and it's not like they have a lot of options to make up that income. When IBM sold their PC division to Lenovo, they had the market for big iron locked up, a successful line of midrange computers, a line of servers, several lines of enterprise software products, and a large consulting division. HP has their printer division, their server and storage lines, their line of Itanium products, and their networking division. HP doesn't have enough in those other areas to make up for spinning out their PC division.

The only thing that would make this move make sense is if HP is attempting to focus solely on the data center and gambling that VDI will be the future of the corporate desktop.

Comment: Re:Wouldn't the Sherman AntiTrust Act apply in the (Score 1) 88

by masdog (#34714534) Attached to: OSI Refers Novell Patent Deal To Authorities

You're right. It is pure supposition that CPTN would be set up to hurt Google. However, three of the four companies that are behind CPTN are engaged in lawsuits with Google or Google partners over Android.

However, the certain competition I was referring to was Linux and other open-source software like Postgres that competes directly with their product offerings.

Comment: Wouldn't the Sherman AntiTrust Act apply in the US (Score 3, Interesting) 88

by masdog (#34707874) Attached to: OSI Refers Novell Patent Deal To Authorities
IANAL, but seeing as how the CPTN combines the patent portfolios four of the largest and most litigious technology firms and appears to exist to exclude certain competition from the market by using intellectual property, couldn't they be charged with a Section 1 violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act for operating as a cartel?

Comment: Re:There are good reasons for some secrecy (Score 1) 1425

by masdog (#34407620) Attached to: Sarah Palin 'Target WikiLeaks Like Taliban'
I'm not going to disagree. There are reasons to keep secrets, especially in war time. You don't want operational details or specs of new weapon systems leaking. But the reaction to the cable leak has been over the top. From what I have seen so far, it looks like a lot of the cables are idle chatter and rumors passed on through official channels. It's also nice to know that the Saudis are pushing for war with Iran, something that shouldn't have been kept secret as elements of our government keep pushing for another war in that region.

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