Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?

Comment: Stupid by committee? (Score 1) 140

by mr.dreadful (#49620381) Attached to: Internet Customers Surpass Cable Subscribers At Comcast
comcast is its own worst enemy. I have Comcast tv and internet, but I can't even give the TV cable away. Because of the bundled price, I wouldn't actually save any money but cutting the TV cable, but I rarely watch it because Comcast downgrades HD to SD in the hopes that I'll pay another 10 bucks a month to get HD back. I'd rather wait a day and watch it in HD over the internet. Fuck you Comcast. I hope it was worth the extra $120 a year to alienate customers, because as soon as I get any sort of choice in my area you guys are right out. To me, you sacrificed long term gain for short-term bullshit.

Comment: Some insider insight (Score 4, Informative) 540

Background: worked at both Skywalker and Big Rock Ranches for over 15 years. There's a lot of misguided or snarky comments here and George deserves an advocate in this case:
  • GWL is not trying to make money on real estate. If he was, he would't be fooling around with apartment complexes, he'd be buying up more land in Marin because that property has been growing by leaps and bounds since 1990.
  • GWL has already donated a significant amount of the land he has bought in Marin to a group called MALT (Marin Agricultural Land Trust). It ensures that the land will remain farmland. *Significant* amounts of land.
  • GWL has always been committed to social justice issues. He doesn't make a big deal out of it. In fact, GWL is pretty low profile about a lot of the generous things he's done.
  • GWL has excellent taste in design and architecture. He's also put his money where his mouth is and built green buildings because it was the right thing to do, despite the cost. Both Big Rock Ranch and Letterman Digital were LEED Certified and they didn't really need to be. Big Rock and Skywalker are both models of how a complex can be integrated and fit into their natural surroundings. Both campuses are almost invisible from the road and even on campus, everything is well integrated into the environment. We should all be so lucky as to have GWL for a neighbor.

I'm not saying he's a saint or anything, but for a billionaire who has changed the shape of our culture, he's actually pretty down to earth. Don't get me wrong, we don't hang out or anything, but in my experience he's consistently gracious, well reasoned, and well intentioned. Mock him all you want for Star Wars decisions, but never question his integrity. He deserves better.

Comment: Re:Discrimination *is* discrimnation (Score 1) 355

This comment is "Score 5: Insightful"? Really? I'm with you about discrimination being a wider issue, but then you bring up the Democrats without making a real point. You are welcome to your political beliefs, but you'll need to craft a better argument then "those Dem's think its okay to discriminate." If you want to just shout your ideology without backing it up, go for it, but you scuttled a potentially interesting conversation by getting all "mouth-breathery."

Comment: The Anti-Solution (Score 2) 983

by mr.dreadful (#46464733) Attached to: How Do You Backup 20TB of Data?
Do you really need to back-up that much data?

I'm just speaking generally here, there are certainly cases where someone would need to back up this much data, but for your home media library? If we're talking movies, 20 TB is roughly 20,000 movies (for sake of argument, I'm not considering music). At what point is this just digital hoarding? I used to keep a large collection of movies, mostly pirated, and eventually realized that:

a) I was spending more time and money managing the collection then I wanted to. b) That I rarely watched many of the items in my library. c) That I was placing myself in legal jeopardy by storing so many illegal copies. d) Anything I did want to re-watch I could get from Netflix, the public library, or download.

Music would be slightly different, as I could see where music is in some kind of constant rotation, but again, how much of it are you actively using? I'm just playing devil's advocate here, but I think this kind of collecting/hoarding is a byproduct of pre-internet scarcity.

Comment: unsophisticated ploy for free work (Score 1) 64

by mr.dreadful (#42634447) Attached to: Corporate Hackathons: the Fine Line Between Engaging and Exploiting
This kind of thing happens to creatives all the time. Designer are asked to submit logos, ad agencies are asked to come up with campaigns, and developers are asked to build software, usually by companies trying to get more then they are willing to pay for. Most professional designers, developers, marketers will recognize this kind of "opportunity" for what is it: a shallow attempt to exploit them. Which is why most professionals, especially successful ones, would laugh at such a project. The people who are really being exploited by this are people who haven't earned much a reputation yet.

Comment: Re:CraigsList is awesome, even if you don't get it (Score 1) 140

Great, then CL is ready for disruption. I'm not saying that CL is awesome, I'm saying this is why you don't take your company public. You can do whatever you want. And if the CL audience is as sick of CL as you and others claim, then it's time for someone to start typing.

Comment: CraigsList is awesome, even if you don't get it. (Score 3, Informative) 140

I'm always amused when I see people, mostly web professionals, bitch about CraigsList.

The VC and bizdev types hate CL because "CL is just leaving money on the table. They need to understand how to make a profit."

Webdevs hate them because CL doesn't adopt whatever new design trend comes along, therefore CL "doesn't get UX", or webdevs hate them because of situations like this, where some webdev can't build his business off of someone else's platform.

This, compadres, is why you don't take your business public. CL has a staff of less then 20 people, they make plenty of bank while at the same time staying true to their own ethos, whether you agree or not. And the consumers seem to be coming back over and over. And yes, I have heard many people say that this is because CL has been around so long, that they are the 500 lb Gorilla that will never be moved. Uhh, are we on the same Internet? Tell that to Yahoo, MySpace, etc etc.

Here's a Wired article from 2009 that covers the exact topic of CL and site scraping. Maybe PadMapper should have read it first.

Wired Interview with Craig Newmark

Comment: Re:Flash to HTML5 movement is not new to Adobe (Score 4, Insightful) 485

by mr.dreadful (#38001220) Attached to: Adobe Ends Development of Flash On Mobile Browsers
"I don't think it took a genius to know that this was coming, "

No, but it took huge balls at the time to say "we're not supporting this anymore. " Apple did the same thing with the 3.5" floppy disk and adopting the USB port on iMacs back in the day and got roundly mocked for it, until the PC makers started following suit a few years later. Whatever Jobs was, he was certainly a visionary. Apple was never afraid of break convention when they felt it was the right thing to do. What other companies can we say that about (seriously, what other PC manufacturers have down this? I'm genuinely curious.)

Comment: Some perspective (Score 1) 349

by mr.dreadful (#37421586) Attached to: Netflix To Lose 1 Million Subscribers
I didn't subscribe to Netflix because I wanted the latest content. I wanted something decent to watch, when I wanted to watch something, and I wanted it cheap. The $18 a month I pay for Netflix is still way cheaper then the $60 I was paying to Comcast for shows I didn't want to see and that were loaded down with commercials I didn't want to watch. When I did the math and realized I was paying $720 a year for that privilege, it was time for a change. It's not that I can't afford it, it's just not worth that amount of money to me.

The degree of technical confidence is inversely proportional to the level of management.