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+ - An open letter to the management of Slashdot. 14

Submitted by onyxruby
onyxruby (118189) writes "I have been watch for some time now as Slashdot has started beta testing a new version of the website. As you are well aware the new site would constitute a complete change to the look, interface and functionality of

Change happens, and for those of us who work with technology for a living it is the only constant. Change is a process and in and of itself is not a bad thing when it offers improvement. Unfortunately the change that has been offered negatively impacts the look, interface and most importantly the functionality of Slashdot.
Many people have had trouble reverting back to the classic interface. The new interface simply does not offer the functionality of the old. Things like statistics, comments and layout are very difficult to find. You have a community that lives and breathes data and want to know their data. How is my comment ranked, how many people responded – it’s really all about the dialogue. Can I get the information that I want in a readily digestible format?

As you’re well aware the new site does not offer the very thing that people come here for. This in and of itself is not why your community has organized a boycott of Beta. The boycott was originated because the new version will be implemented whether the community wants it or not.

I want to explain why this change has gone down people’s throats about as well as Windows 8’s Metro interface. The reason has absolutely nothing to do with the interface and everything to do with the perception that the editors and management of Slashdot appear to have.

The message that has been consistently handed down is that we are “your audience”. We are not your “your audience” we are your product. People do not come to Slashdot for the news stories, there are untold other sites that provide those as well as professional and original writing about them. People come here for the community of insiders from across the industry.

Please respect the community and stop what you’re doing. You have commented that you don’t want to maintain two code bases. Your community works in the industry and understands this, which leads many to suggest you abandon the new code base entirely so that you are only maintaining once code base. Tell us what your trying to accomplish and I would imagine that a wide range of experts would be more than willing to help you meet your goals."

Comment: Re:" we migrate our audience..." (Score 3, Informative) 232

by onyxruby (#46178783) Attached to: Target's Data Breach Started With an HVAC Account

Than why are you pulling a microsoft and ignoring your community? Your community /is/ your product. Like microsoft forcing metro with Windows 8 the beta site isnt functional and you insist on ignoring the very hands that feed you. Without your community slashdot is just another has been website.

Comment: Re:Fruit of the poison tree (Score 1) 266

Thanks for playing internet lawyer. You have failed and now some person might think that they can get out of things just because the evidence was obtained illegally. As long as a private citizen gets the evidence without being under the direction of law enforcement, even if they got it illegally, it is admissible.

United States v. Jacobsen
(1984) 466 U.S. 109, 113 [The Fourth Amendment] is wholly inapplicable to a search or seizure, even an unreasonable one, effected by a private individual not acting as an agent of the Government or with the participation or knowledge of any governmental official

Comment: False premisis (Score 4, Insightful) 301

Many people seem to be under the delusion that if we don't allow the pipeline into the US that the oil wont be extracted. It is Canada's right to extract the oil and sell it to the market - and they will. By removing the pipeline to the US from the table all you are doing is forcing the market to adapt. The market can and will adapt by either using trucks to haul the oil (much higher risk of a spill) or by selling their product elsewhere.

You lose the advantage of having the environmental impact of a single pipeline that is easy to monitor and the safest relative way to transport oil. Your instead replacing it with shipping through another pipeline to a port where it will be placed on ships and sent overseas. The most likely place to ship it to is China and you can rest assured they won't be worrying about environmental impact reports.

Now the same amount of oil is being used and it has a higher impact on the environment during shipment and afterwards. Meanwhile the US will be importing oil from overseas to meet demand, again adding shipping risks and emissions. This is plainly worse for the environment and the net result is pretty much the opposite of people are trying to achieve.

Comment: Piffle (Score 1) 118

by onyxruby (#46129127) Attached to: How the Black Hole Firewall Paradox Was Resolved

You fall into a black hole and you will heated up from friction to the point that you become atomized. The idea that wouldn't be incinerated is absurd when the brightest and hottest objects in the universe are quasars caused by material being incinerated from friction. Now whether you are incinerated first or spaghettified first or killed by radiation is a different story. One way or another though you will be incinerated.

Comment: Outsourcing (Score 1) 177

by onyxruby (#46125807) Attached to: Reports Say Satya Nadella Is Microsoft's Next CEO

I have to wonder what will happen to their outsourcing efforts if a person from India is made CEO? Microsoft already has well over 10,000 jobs outsourced to India as it is now? That being said their enterprise division generally seems to be run much more competently than their other divisions and he may well be the best candidate for the job.

Comment: Honest name (Score 2) 430

by onyxruby (#46118983) Attached to: Kansas To Nix Expansion of Google Fiber and Municipal Broadband

Let's give this an honest name shall we. Why don't we call these bills Protect Oligopoly Results Kineticly act - or PORK acts. The only thing these bills do is protect the business model of existing oligopolies and prevent competition. They are inherently anti-capitalist and have no place in the US (or anywhere else in my opinion).

Competition is a wonderful thing and those countries that have competition have much better service for much better prices and their companies still make quite a bit of money.

Comment: Re:Lots of nonsense (Score 1) 723

by onyxruby (#46116025) Attached to: Atlanta Gambled With Winter Storm and Lost

I think you'll find a hell of a time finding idiots that can drive in a foot, much less half a foot of snow. We get ice and sleet up here as well, or even the fun combination of freezing rain covered by a sheet of snow that hides the ice from visibility.

If you live outside of a main corridor you probably won't get your road salted before a storm. Even in major cities you probably wont see a plow for a few days after a storm and the streets are left covered in snow and ice for months at a time with no pavement visible. If you live in the country you might not see a plow for several days or a week after a storm. Anything less than 4 inches in many places isn't considered enough to bother sending out the plows at all.

You can drive up and down hills covered in ice, and we routinely do so. You sound like a whiny pretentious child. However in my years of travel I have spent quite a bit of time with southerners that are not whiny pretentious children and who routinely asked me for advice for how to drive in winter weather conditions. The advice wasn't for you, it was for those with a desire not to crash their car or get stranded the next time this happens. I know your conditions quite well. I have experienced winter weather in the south everywhere from Texas to Georgia. I have even driven in Atlanta during rush hour.

Comment: Re:Lots of nonsense (Score 1) 723

by onyxruby (#46111965) Attached to: Atlanta Gambled With Winter Storm and Lost

I'm not oblivious to how things are in the south in the winter, I've spent a year in Texas and traveled the south extensively. It's quite possible to drive on ice and do so safely, you only need to google pictures of ice fishing to find all kinds of vehicles that are driven onto frozen lakes. The third responder to my post gave a fairly decent description that would work quite nicely for streets that are covered in ice.

The bottom line is to make your tires /barely/ move and ensure that they aren't spinning. This requires feathering the gas very gently, and as long as you do so you can climb hills covered in ice. Start your entry to the hill with momentum from before the hill and once your momentum starts to slip let off the gas keeping just enough to barely move. Once you are moving you can slowly add more speed, however as soon as your tires start to slip you have to let off the gas.

Comment: Lots of nonsense (Score 3, Informative) 723

by onyxruby (#46110259) Attached to: Atlanta Gambled With Winter Storm and Lost

I read story after story about how most people don't have 4 wheel drive, snow tires and they don't have salt for the roads. Most people from the north don't have 4 wheel drive and they don't have snow tires (all season are most common). The amounts of snow that shut down the south doesn't even justify putting salt down up north, it simply snows small amounts like that too often to justify it.

Really, you don't need a 4x4 SUV with snow tires just to tackled a couple inches of snow. In fact a vehicle like that is more likely to lose control and roll over in the ditch. A regular 2wd car with all season tires is perfectly fine for typical winter driving in the north. If you can afford snow tires those are preferred, but hardly required. Applying more gas if your stuck will never get you out, it will just make you more stuck. Slowly rock your car out sideways and back and forth and you can free yourself most of the time.

What you do need to do is remember to slow the hell down. You need a lot more stopping distance than normal. You also need a lot longer to start and if you pull into traffic like normal your going to get T-boned. When you do slow down do so before the curve and don't slam on your brakes. Most people lose control and spin out when they are braking. Try braking when you are in an isolated area to know how long it will take your car - not you - to respond.

There is no excuse for that kind of thing other than people being reckless. If the conditions aren't familiar to you, than slow the hell down until you become familiar, it's that simple.

Comment: Smaug is environmentally wonderful (Score 3, Insightful) 69

by onyxruby (#46102509) Attached to: Historical Carbon Emissions From Dragons In Middle Earth

Replace the denizens of an entire city with a single creature - check. Single creature spends most of it's time lounging about and doing nothing - check. Single creature reuses the work product of others instead of making their own emissions - check. Single creature eats far less than an entire city - check.

It's a no brainier - Smaug is good for the environment.

If you think the system is working, ask someone who's waiting for a prompt.