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Comment: Re: instant access to computers around the world (Score 1) 259

Quite. Its amazing how many people today still think the internet = the web. Mention stuff like ftp, gopher, archie or WAIS and you just get blank looks.

Bah! They glaze over at telephone modem. They would think a BBS was an early Facebook. Of course, they'd be right, but Zuck probably doesn't know about the BBS days, either.

Comment: Re: instant access to computers around the world (Score 1) 259

instant access to computers around the world

Actually, in 1981 the internet existed, you could FTP and use email, as long as you knew the bang path routing.

It wasn't for 2 more years after 1981 that I learned of it, but I knew people that were using it in the late 70's even. Contrary to what seems to be the popular public belief, the internet didn't start in the 1990's. That's just when the masses became aware of it, largely due to the influx of AOLers.

Granted it was much smaller then as far as number of connected machines.

Well, it was also a DARPA (ARPnet) project back then and only participating universities, govt contractors and govt agencies could get on. It was not publicly available. What was publicly available then was modem Bulletin Board Systems (BBSs). Those had chat forums, localized email and file sharing. If you were lucky and "knew a guy" or a guy who knew a guy, you could get on a networked BBS that exchanged files with other boards around the world via nightly sync or even luckier if you had someone from one of those universities or other running a board that also bridged to ARPAnet. That's where a lot of old usenet content got started. Those were the good ole days of social media. BBS meet and greets were fun. A lot less scary than now, fore sure and for a lot of new and different reasons.

Comment: Re:"it's also a smart visual explanation of why... (Score 1) 259


"it's also a smart visual explanation of why the future of technology so often bears so little resemblance to anyone's predictions"

No, it's not an explanation at all. It was intended as a metaphor for miniaturization of electronics. Noone in their right mind would take a full QWERTY keyboard with keys the size of pin heads literally.

Except for the pinheads!

Comment: Re:It was a "joke" back then (Score 2) 259

Arthur C. Clarke probably had the most "hits" with future tech of any sci-fi author I know of. He and a Russian predicted satellites in 1945. He's had a few others, and there are more if you google him and "predictions". He was not only a writer but a bit of a scientist and avid scuba diver til the day he died. Wish I could have met him.

Comment: Re:What would a real nerd do? (Score 1) 301

A real nerd would know how to calculate Pi from scratch, no shotgun required...

Pi = (4/1) - (4/3) + (4/5) - (4/7) + (4/9) - (4/11) + (4/13) - (4/15) ... (keep going until you get the number of decimal places you need.)

Gaaaa! What? How about 22 / 7 . Way closer, less painful. Nerds do it more efficiently and more accurately. That was about as bad as the shotgun method, maybe worse. I stopped doing the math at (4/15) when the result was 3.01[something] and adding (4/17) was 3.25[something] ... Not even close.

Comment: Re:Only in America... (Score 1) 301

a gun to calculate Pi value...

Not only are they Canadian, they're French Canadian. Calling them American is worse than calling them Canadian as the Québecers would rather be their own country all together. I just think they're smoking something to not use simple long division to calculate Pi, especially as a university research mathematician. I mean, really! 22 / 7 = closer to Pi than their stupid shotgun embarrassment.

Comment: Re:um.... (Score 1) 301

":...being a mathematician, they turn to you." You're not much of a mathematician if you don't already know the value of Pi out to several decimal places without the need to expel valuable ammo in an experiment. /john

Yeah, and how hard is it to divide 22 by 7 with a twig in the dirt, "Mr. Mathematician"? That's also an acceptable approximation of Pi that is 4.0249943477E-2 percent off the "true value". I think the colder climate and/or recreational hallucinogens has slowed those Canadians' brains a might. Maybe that's the way to avoid zombies, after all.

Comment: Re:WOWZA! (Score 1) 229

by multimediavt (#46739097) Attached to: How much do you spend yearly on mobile apps?

you have some bad misconceptions between your ears, advocating and using open source has nothing at all to do with whether or not a person is pro or anti capitalism. Plenty of money to be made in open source, that's how I make my living. I run quality free apps on my phone, I pay the phone provider for the platform and connectivity to do so. Capitalism all around, good stuff.

Meanwhile, Microsoft and some other closed sourced companies have governmet in its pockets to sway things their way, that is not capitalism.

No, not at all really, having been an avid reader and commenter for more than 15 years I can say that this crowd (as a majority that comments in these threads dealing with mobile apps) may be for making money but certainly not spending it on the work of other people. Have you read the comments in this thread? The clear consensus is that this crowd doesn't spend money on applications that they use. I hate to tell you this but capitalism requires consumer spending to work. You can't make money if no one gives you money for your work. And I love the little libertarian bullshit dig at big business and the government at the end to get mod points from that crowd. Show me one profitable open source company that isn't lobbying the government? Google is in the same boat as Microsoft and Red Hat for that matter when it comes to trying to have ignorant or corrupt government officials in their pockets. Don't be naive and think that I am so. You may want to do your own research rather than parroting and pandering like former ignorant and corrupt politicians. Plus, one of the reasons behind open source software development was to disrupt capitalism in the software industry. What do you think the effect is when your competition is giving its product away? No, definitely no misconceptions here. Your definition of capitalism and your understanding of economics just don't jive. You have a misconception in that the money you spend for a phone and cell service somehow makes its way to the app developers and capitalism all around. Not so much really.

Comment: Re:Even for desk jockeys not good (Score 1) 97

by multimediavt (#46617677) Attached to: What Apple's iWatch Can Learn From Pebble

Maybe watches work for desk jockeys?

I always found the strap was annoying when letting my wrists rest near a keyboard.

Watches also interfere with your sleeves when wearing a dress shirt.

Watches were fun for a while when I was young, but I never missed them after I started using my phone as a watch and it would take quite a bit of compelling reasons beyond what I see now to get me to wear a watch again.

Well, if you learned to keyboard properly and wore shirts that fit properly you may still be wearing a watch. You're not supposed to rest your wrists on something while typing. It's like playing the piano. Your wrists are supposed to be elevated with you hands flat, parallel to the floor and fingers naturally angling down to the keys. Dress shirt sleeve cuffs should terminate just behind the opposing joint of the thumb and not constrict around your wrist so jewelry (watches, bracelets) doesn't get caught easily. Might want to try French cuff shirts. Sounds like the boat may have already sailed for you though. I don't wear watches often these days either, unless I am getting dressed up, but the right clothing does help the getting caught problem. As for they keyboarding, you may want to work on your technique to prevent any long term injuries, or to mitigate any existing ones. I learned piano before typing so I had a bit of a head start on proper wrist-hand posture when I did finally start typing.

Comment: Re:Bullshit Made Up Language (Score 1) 512

by multimediavt (#46615465) Attached to: Why <em>Darmok</em> Is a Good <em>Star Trek: TNG</em> Episode

I had to explain "cross the Rubicon" to my wife just yesterday, in fact. (Her English is good, but it's mostly everyday/around-the-house English

Is that just an English idiom? I'd assumed it would be known in most places where Roman influence was strong.

You would assume correctly. Has to do with our common Roman/European roots. It's not an original English idiom, nor is it an English idiom at all, really. Since modern English is a hodge-podge of borrowed words from several different cultures and root languages, and some ridiculous meldings ("television" for instance-half Greek, half-Latin) one could see how some could get confused. The great 20th century philologist, J.R.R. Tolkien, saw Icelandic as the closest thing to what Old English was. Modern English is a mess. It's ok, most people don't know what the words they're saying mean anyway so what difference does it make. I had some idiot the other day in a meeting try to make themselves look cool by using "bifurcated" to describe something that was split in three parts. [facepalm]

Comment: Re:or 2 competing providers before an area loses P (Score 1) 449

by multimediavt (#46615275) Attached to: WSJ: Prepare To Hang Up the Phone &mdash; Forever

The problem is the people outside of town. It's easy to have a cell tower or 2 in the centre of town but to have multiple towers will mean eating into their profits.

One other thing to note is that cell towers have limited range, dependent on a myriad of factors it can be as little as several hundred yards to 10 miles. Do you know how many towers would be needed to cover, say, rural Nevada or Utah? It's completely unfeasible from a cost stand point. If they tried, everyone's basic cell service would cost over $500/month, nationwide. Besides, they would still need the cables in the ground to get the signal from place to place because wireless interconnects would only be line-of-sight.

Comment: Re:Worst episodes? (Score 1) 512

by multimediavt (#46613227) Attached to: Why <em>Darmok</em> Is a Good <em>Star Trek: TNG</em> Episode

I hated pretty much all of seasons one and two.

Actually, if you look at most long running series television shows, the third season is usually the best. The writers, actors and directors seem to hit a stride and it's shades of season three or a downward slide from there on, with few exceptions. My personal feeling is that series shows should not go beyond four seasons. After 100 episodes they tend to take a dive and everyone wants to do something else.

Comment: Re:What? TNG? Come on Grandpa (Score 1) 512

by multimediavt (#46613193) Attached to: Why <em>Darmok</em> Is a Good <em>Star Trek: TNG</em> Episode

How old are you? Are you still hung up on your DVD collection?

Wow, how naive are you? That show blows away most sci-fi screenwriting done since. Maybe when you grow up you might realize that good stories aren't just written and portrayed within your limited lifetime or experience.

The person who's taking you to lunch has no intention of paying.