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Comment: the comments on Slashdot sadden me (Score 1) 376

by nigeljw (#35120124) Attached to: Wikipedia Works To Close Gender Gap
wow... the crowd here could not be any more like the elitist Wikipedia community. try being a little less esoteric. also, a little less indifference would be nice. the comments are about ten to one negative for this article. slashdot is a container for a huge amount of negativity, and it never fails to sadden me about mankind. I wish more of this intelligence was use to produce positive "constructive" change.

Comment: Piracy only negatively affects BAD expensive media (Score 1) 199

by nigeljw (#35108288) Attached to: Piracy Boosts Anime Sales, Says Japanese Government Study

There would be zero proliferation of Japanese animation in the western world, without the mass fansubbing era. The groups seem to be becoming satisfied with current pricing schemes by sites such as Crunchy Roll, so they have been showing due respect (call out to Dattebayo!). I myself am an avid watcher, though the chrunchy roll player is a bit dodgy. On linux, the player stops swapping in new frames if I interact with the browser functions (fullscreen, etc), which is why I would MUCH rather be able to download a high quality version and watch it from my own hd using a solid video player. Or at least provide feeds that we can watch with remote players like VLC (though I always prefer mplayer). The commercial world is still slagging behind technology.

Note: Fansubbing does not affect the sales of cheap bad anime. People will always buy bad cheap stuff, its in our nature. It only affects overpriced poorly adapted animations of respected manga. Even then, the affect is marginal as this article would make it seem.

Comment: DIY WAN + Satellite Comms during a revolution (Score 1, Interesting) 840

by nigeljw (#35028378) Attached to: Egypt Shuts Off All Internet Access

This is a practical guide for the Egyptians to set up a new independent network. For the instructions, skip to below the story.

I live on a Island, Newfoundland, on which the first transatlantic wireless telegraph was communicated to Cornwall, England.

I grew up driving all around the Island on the weekends with my Dad installing and servicing satellite up-links. It is his own business so he worked six or seven days a week when Newfoundland's economy was in the pits. His company has since become successful, even though wired communication companies always criticize the strength of satellite signals (which is bullshit, I always get very clean signals in a city with a huge amount of snow). He also does work in other electrical systems (power meters, wireless wide area networks, etc.). He has also always kept the same raggedy tag crew for his employees, who are a great group of people. Instead of reducing the salaries of his employees during the recession, he instead made up for the loss out of his paycheck. I am proud of my dad. I am sure my mother is proud of him as well in heaven. When I was younger, I liked to look at my Dad as a futuristic Marconi. I have since become a seasoned software developer myself.

Instructions:

The first thing I would do to establish a truly independent internet in Egypt is to set up a wide area network all around Cairo. Wireless towers throughout the city. Redundancy here is key, since if the government destroys some towers, others will still be online. The antennae only have to be separated by about 30 meters. The towers can easily be crafted since the antennae are lightweight.

The hardware that is needed are a two WiLan radios for a point to point network. Omni directional antennae are needed for short range hub regions for the end user connections, and more powerful directional antennae are needed for long range point to point connections, plus any relay stations require two directional antennae (incoming and outgoing) and a repeater. Two RF connectors (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RF_connector) for each high grade coaxial cable. The towers are easily constructed out of steel. Cable cutters and proper crimping tools are a must (substitutes could be found). Wrenches: 9/16, and 3/4. A power meter is required to read the signal while peaking (positioning) and polarizing (rotating) the dish. You hook up the leads to the core of the cable and the outer shield.

Satellite up-links are required to connect this localized network to the outside world. Earth station hardware should not be that difficult to find. Here in Newfoundland, almost all gas stations use earth stations for their Interac communications. I set most of them up myself when I was working before I went to university. Any large and small commercial cable satellite dishes can be used as down-link stations to transmit incoming information.

The hardware needed are a RF Head (Telesat here in Canada make high quality transmission, I'd say Qualcomm make them as well) and a Hughes PES 5000 (I highly recommend this model, PES stands for personal earth station.). Two RF connectors are required to connect the coaxial cable between the RF Head and the PES. To peak the dish, a power meter is required. It is a similar process as for directional wireless antennae. An inclinometer is required to set the elevation, though this could be done by site. Down-links can be set up with only an LNB, which is a specialized/simplified type of RF Head that only allows for incoming signals (low noise block used with any commercial tv satellite). Down-links generally do not need to be polarized since they do not transmit and only receive. Always peak the dish with the transmit function off, then turn on the transmit function and polarize the RF Head, by rotating its body. Never stand in front of the dish when the transmit function is on. Its not necessarily that harmful, but it can disrupt the communications for other satellites if a transmit radio wave is bouncing around everywhere. You should also be somehow in communication with the satellite controllers.

The central idea here is if access to foreign satellites is granted. These systems are very easily set up. The most difficult part is crimping the RF connectors, since these are high grade connectors and have a detailed process. They could just try to trim back the shield and jam the wire into the RF Head and the back of the PES. It should theoretically work.

Anyways by, this is my two cents. I quickly wrote this, so they may be some rough instructions. Anyone could set up this, even a child if they were properly instructed. The only thing that is an absolute requirement is an IP on an open server for the earth station. There should be such an open emergency network, and I am sure any rich country has a satellite to spear. The satellite I am most familiar with is Anik E2, which is at an azimuth of 265 degrees in the Atlantic region of Canada at an elevation of 20 degrees. Satellite positioning applets can easily be found by searching google to find out their relative location to your own region.

Comment: The instantaneous position of your big head (Score 3) 436

by nigeljw (#35002934) Attached to: 3D Cinema Doesn't Work and Never Will

Depth perception is not viewing in three dimensions. If you want three dimensions go develop a light field display (http://gl.ict.usc.edu/Research/3DDisplay/). Stereopsis is achieved perfectly using two displaced cameras to view the image. Parallax is not perfect unless head tracking is used to transform the view frustum dynamically. Its like static depth perception without it. Everyone knows that dynamic is always better unless it is typing (this is a funny truth/joke, I hope someone gets it).

There is a huge difference between the 2D to 3D conversion process to produce films and using a stereoscopic camera with dual cameras. Cameron used stereoscopic cameras to film Avatar, though I am sure he used some tricks to accentuate some scenes. Chronicles of Narnia used the conversion process, so all the characters are flat (I mean in regards to video, and not plot development), but the computer generated backgrounds have depth perception.

Somebody else mentioned that depth perception is past its prime. I agree with him/her. This is the same technology of the 60s. Until head tracking is combined with depth perception, all of the binocular cues are not active. Convergence can be achieved with future technology. The only problem with the current technology is that sometimes bad editors overlay foreground scenes (from a green screen) and backgrounds with different depths of field. This produces a wonky image that our brain has trouble processing. The Gestalt principles should be law when editing 3D video.

Nintendo DS does not use stereopsis (two images). It uses big object detection with a computer vision library to detect the position of your large head. It does not produce two separate images for each eye to view. It then transforms the viewing frame to account for the position of your head. So if you are looking out a window, you can poke your head around and see around the interior of the edges of the screen.

I can't believe I had to read this article so I could comment on it.

3D films remind the audience that they are in a certain "perspective" relationship to the image. It is almost a Brechtian trick.

What nonsense, this is only because its feels weird wearing those glasses. And the glasses tend to be less translucent around the edges which causes a dream like effect similar to the blurred borders in scenes used in 90s TV to evoke a dream state, and in some bad movies.

The shifting of convergence he is talking about due to the strobing from horizontal motion would be greatly reduced using head tracking (with depth perception) to perfect the parallax, but it is kindof difficult unless everybody has their own display with a camera on it. A side angle camera is required to perfect this technology, as using the size of your head does not really determine you head z position. The dynamic/instantaneous position of your head is important.

Government

Pentagon Credit Union Database Compromised 108

Posted by samzenpus
from the leaking-like-a-sieve dept.
Trailrunner7 writes "The credit union used by members of the US armed forces and their families has admitted that a laptop infected with malware.was used to access a database containing the personal and financial information of customers. The Pentagon Federal Credit Union (PenFed) issued a statement to the New Hampshire Attorney General that said data, including the names, addresses, Social Security Numbers and PenFed banking and credit card account information of its members were accessed by the infected PC."

Comment: Keyboard no.. Mouse maybe (Score 1) 332

by nigeljw (#34783318) Attached to: Will Touch Screens Kill the Keyboard?

There is no way I would ever develop on a virtual keyboard. (take note of the period at the end of the sentence)

Typing speeds on a virtual keyboard will never match that of a physical keyboard. (Note: Virtual keyboards will eventually merge with their physical counterparts, at that point they are no longer virtual keyboards)

There is NO satisfaction from smashing a virtual keyboard with your fists in anger.

I hardly ever use my mouse as it is, so I imagine that touch screen desktop systems will kill the mouse. My laptop has a touch screen, and the only time I touch the screen is to recapture the context to the window, which is a very fluid action. (Note: Clearly "kill the mouse" is not as catchy as "kill the keyboard")

Businesses

+ - Facebook's Revenues Leaked->

Submitted by eldavojohn
eldavojohn (898314) writes "Think that Goldman Sachs spent too much on Facebook with the $450 million investment? Well, a very wealthy customer of theirs decided to leak Facebook's financials today after receiving it over lunch: 'during the first nine months of 2010, Facebook generated $1.2 billion in revenue. Net income at the firm was $355 million. The financial statements were not audited and offered little detail about how Facebook generates it revenue, said the source, who did not want to be identified because he had signed a non-disclosure agreement.' Expanding this nine month period to a year yields $1.6 billion in revenue and under half a billion in income. Given that, should Facebook be valuated at $50 billion?"
Link to Original Source
Apple

+ - Apple Formally Declares Its Enterprise Intentions->

Submitted by
snydeq
snydeq writes "After years of mixed signals, Apple has apparently opened the kimono on its enterprise intentions, announcing a "Mac in the Enterprise" campaign to help large businesses integrate Macs, iPhones, and iPads into their IT ecosystems, InfoWorld reports. 'Apple's Mac focus here is particularly striking, unlike that on the iPhone, which has already made obvious inroads in the enterprise market thanks to Apple's delivery of business-class management capabilities. By contrast, the Mac's presence in the business world has been remarkably understated — despite the fact that the Mac population therein reportedly doubled between 2006 and 2008 and looks to grow even more this year. '"
Link to Original Source
Cellphones

+ - Amazon to launch 'Amazon Appstore for Android'-> 1

Submitted by
angry tapir
angry tapir writes "Amazon is preparing to open an Android app store to compete with Google's Android Market, and has launched a beta portal where developers can submit applications for Android-based smartphones. The applications will be sold on the Amazon Appstore for Android, which the company expects to launch later this year. At launch, the Appstore will be available for customers in the U.S., and it will be compatible with Android 1.6 and higher. Users will be able to shop for applications from their PCs, which isn't possible with the existing version of Android Market, or from their smartphones, and pay with their existing Amazon account."
Link to Original Source

+ - Nvidia teases ARM-based CPU for desktops, servers->

Submitted by J. Dzhugashvili
J. Dzhugashvili (1007075) writes "Today at CES, Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang shocked attendees by announcing Project Denver, a "high performance ARM core" designed in-house at Nvidia. Project Denver will include both a next-generation ARM-based processor component and a graphics processor on the same silicon. Huang gave strong hints that a yet-to-be-announced version of Windows will run on the chip, too."
Link to Original Source
Businesses

+ - For Mac developers, Armageddon comes tomorrow->

Submitted by kdawson
kdawson (3715) writes "David Gewirtz's blog post over at ZDNet warns of an imminent price collapse for traditional Mac applications, starting tomorrow when the Mac App Store opens. The larger questions: what will Mac price plunges of 90%-95% mean for the PC software market? For the Mac's market share? Quoting: 'The Mac software market is about as old-school as you get. Developers have been creating, shipping, and selling products through traditional channels and at traditional price points for decades. ... Mac software has historically been priced on a parity with other desktop software. That means small products are about $20. Utilities run in the $50-60 range. Games in the $50 range. Productivity packages and creative tools in the hundreds, and specialty software — well, the sky's the limit. Tomorrow, the sky will fall. Tomorrow, the iOS developers move in and the traditional Mac developers better stick their heads between their legs and kiss those price points goodbye.'"
Link to Original Source
Open Source

Groklaw — Don't Go Home, Go Big 230

Posted by Soulskill
from the if-you-strike-me-down dept.
jfruhlinger writes "You may have caught PJ's Christmas Day post on Groklaw, expressing her anger and frustration that, after she helped save Novell's Unix patents from SCO's clutches, Novell turned around and sold many of those patents to an open source-unfriendly coalition. She's feeling at a crossroads and wondering what Groklaw should become. Brian Proffitt has a suggestion: a bigger, more community-oriented site."

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