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+ - Downgrade and force some packages on Debian to a previous version-> 1

Submitted by jeanleonino
jeanleonino (3752081) writes "The xserver 1.16 transition hit Debian jessie (the actual testing) today, and since the nvidia proprietary driver isn’t still compatible with it, it got removed. So here it is how to downgrade and force some packages to stay on that version using apt, without having to manually download and install any .deb."
Link to Original Source

+ - Is it feasible to revive an old Linux PC setup? 1

Submitted by Qbertino
Qbertino (265505) writes "I’ve been rumaging around on old backups and cleaning out my stuff and have once again run into my expert-like paranoid backups and keepsakes from back in the days (2001). I’ve got, among other things, a full installset of Debian 3 CDs, an original StarOffice 6.0 CD including a huge manual in mint condition, Corel Draw 9 for Linux, the original box & CDs — yes it ran on a custome wine setup, but it ran well, I did professional design and print work with it.

I’ve got more of other stuff lying around, including the manuals to run it. Loki Softs Tribes 2, Kohan, Rune and the original Unreal Tournament for Linux have me itching too. :-)

I was wondering if it would be possible to do an old 2001ish setup of a linux workstation on some modern supercheap, supersmall PC (Rasberry Pi? Mini USB PC?), install all the stuff and give it a spin. What problems should I expect? Vesa and Soundblaster drivers I’d expect to work, but what’s with the IDE HDD drivers? How well does vintage Linux software from 2003 play with todays cheap system-on-board MicroPCs? What’s with the USB stuff? Wouldn’t the install expect the IO devices hooked on legacy ports? Have you tried running 10-15 year old Linux setups on devices like these and what are your experiences? What do you recommend?"

Comment: Software Emulation (Score 1) 242

by owlman17 (#46593127) Attached to: Hacking Charisma

Taking the analogy a bit further, it's not so much as "reverse-engineering" as it is emulating it in software. Some people just have the hardware for it. Those who don't need to learn the algorithms involved before "rendering" charisma. For sure, it won't be as fast or fluid, but it'll mostly work for some tasks. Some of my socially-awkward, geeky friends took great pains in doing this, devouring self-help and socialization books, seminars, etc. The end result doesn't quite look natural, almost like running Crysis at 12 FPS with the lowest details, but passable enough.

Comment: Re:a good friend (Score 1) 189

by garett_spencley (#44597249) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Experiences Working At a High-Profile Game Studio?

I see both sides.

If I witness a good friend who I think is about to walk off of a cliff (metaphorically or literally) then I usually say something, but it has to be pretty serious because otherwise I don't think it is my place. I'm sure the person posting the question to /. does think this is serious, as he is worried his friend is turning down a lot of money and an excellent opportunity for something that won't pan out. Yet at the same time, if this person wants to go work for a game studio that kind of implies "that is my dream" to me. And the type of friend who would discourage someone's dream is the antithesis of someone I would want to a call a "friend."

That's the question that needs to be answered. If the programmer / student wants to work for a game studio because he thinks the game industry is growing and it's his best bet at securing a solid financial future there is no harm in presenting facts to the contrary. But if, on the other hand, he is akin to a musician who dreams of becoming a rock star and is perfectly content pumping gas and sleeping on couches trying to carve out a career and has no ambitions of getting married, starting a family and having a comfortable middle class retirement then it is a very big asshole move to step into the role of father and say "No don't do that because there's no money in it." He's probably already had to put up with enough of that bullshit from his parents already. What he needs from his friends is support in that case.

Comment: Free market (Score 4, Insightful) 238

by garett_spencley (#44456969) Attached to: How Did My Stratosphere Ever Get Shipped?

1) No one, not even the most "hard core" fiscal conservatives / libertarians, claim the free market is "infallable." The free market is individual human beings making individual economic decisions without coercive interference from others. Human beings are fallable, thus the free market is "fallable."

2) 3rd party reviews = free market. What is not free market is when government creates oversight organizations / watchdogs through taxation and uses them to enforce laws and regulations. Examples are the FCC, FDA etc.

3) As imperfect as it may be, at least when a company releases a major catastrophe of a buggy product they get penalized with support and replacement costs, bad PR and a market that will think long and hard before buying another product from that company.

4) There is nothing stopping anyone from implementing your suggestion for creating better cellphone reviews. That's the beauty of the free market. The fact that no one has done it (as far as we know) does not hint to the free market's imperfections, it means there is a business opportunity waiting to make someone some money.

Comment: Re:Technical illiteracy among politicians (Score 3) 266

by garett_spencley (#44372989) Attached to: British Porn-Censoring MP Has Website Defaced With Porn

I've tried to follow this discussion. Let me see if I've gotten it right.

First, someone says that studies have found that pornography causes no psychological or ill effects.

You respond with information to the contrary.

You get a response which basically said "So what? Some people get addicted, they also get addicted to TV and other things, and I take objection to your 'nothing good comes out of it'" and he makes some points.

Now you're saying "OK well I guess some good comes out of it but wouldn't you agree that there's more negative than good?"

My response to that is: "Citation needed."

I am really interested in why you are "anti-porn." Why are you fixated on whether it's largely good or bad ? We're talking about something that people do in private for themselves. Now, I don't tend to look at things in collectivist ways, meaning I don't judge something based on it's "contributions to society" because I am an individualist. However, I can make the argument that "society" is a collection of individuals and so if porn provides some sort of positive service to any individual then I would judge it to be good. And if you're looking at things in terms of "how many numbers of individuals does it hurt v.s. how many numbers of individuals does it help" then given that the overwhelming majority of people who consume porn do not get addicted (and we can be very broad with the word "addicted" by defininig addiction as "when the activity begins to interfere with your day to day life") then even looking at it in collectivist / "greater good" terms then you would have to come to the conclusion that it actually does more good than harm.

Comment: Re:What else did you expect? (Score 5, Interesting) 387

by garett_spencley (#44252629) Attached to: Steve Ballmer Reorganizing Microsoft

Ballmer might be a horrible CEO (I don't really care enough to know), but you would think a CEO should have some idea of what parts of the company are "important", and "important" should not be a matter of opinion, but of objective profit measurement.

Books have been written about why companies that focus do better than companies that try to get their hands into everything. PepsiCo owns everything from Frito-Lay to KFC to East Side Marios restaurants, but both Coca Cola and McDonald's each have PepsiCo beat in terms of net asset value despite each corporation focusing tightly on only beverages or a single fast food chain.

It's not against anyone's best interests for Microsoft to cut the fat and sell off divisions and brands that aren't integral to it's core focus. What the core focus is, if it has one, I don't know. My guess is it should probably be Windows and related products like Office. XBox should at the very least drop the Microsoft brand and be treated as a separate company, if not actually spun into a completely separate company. There's really no reason not to. The shareholders can spin off divisions or brands held by Microsoft corp into completely new companies and still retain ownership in those new companies. They would just elect a new Presidents for those new corps, hire a new executive team (preferably by promoting experts within those divisions who know what they're doing), and let them be run as tightly focused companies that don't need to compete for capital and resources with all of the other divisions under the currently bloated umbrella corp that is Microsoft. The shareholders continue to profit from their holdings as long as the new company is profitable, and the employees working in those divisions benefit from working for a company that is dedicated solely to achieving the success of the products they actually work on, rather than being treated "unimportant" compared to the other divisions (i.e: no more infighting). As long as there is any hope for those products they stand to do much better as stand-alone companies.

Another reason defocused companies are at a disadvantage is that often they need to sell to their competitors. Pepsi actually outsells Coca Cola in super markets, but in restaurants Coca Coca destroys them, and as a result Coca Cola wins in terms of net profits. The reason is because McDonald's and others don't want to buy from PepsiCo when Pepsi owns Taco Bell, KFC and other competitors.

Comment: Re:Thou hast angered thy King (Score 1) 260

by garett_spencley (#44076541) Attached to: China Says Serious Polluters Will Get the Death Penalty

Reparations can be made to a living person, and dead people cannot exercise habeus corpus.

People screw up when dealing with each other, it's a fact of life. One can even argue that that's the entire justification for government existing in the first place: to provide a means for resolving interpersonal conflicts. The government, being human, has the capacity for error. And so governments need to be held accountable for their actions which is the point of checks and balances. Those checks and balances become meanlingless in death. A person who was falsely executed for a crime he/she did not commit has no access to habeus corpus and cannot hold the government accountable for the mistake that ended their life.

Morally, a person who murders another deserves to die. But under that same principle it is better to sentence 9 murderers to life in prison than it is to execute 1 innocent person, as it only takes that one false execution to turn the state itself into a murderer by definition.

Comment: Re:Of course (Score 1) 260

by garett_spencley (#43798045) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Can Yahoo Actually Stage a Comeback?

I'm going to back up your "So What?" with another point of view.

There is a perception that traditional "big business" has long understood, but that the big Internet corps like Yahoo and Google have yet to "get", and it holds that the less you focus the worse a job you will do.

Corporations like Procter & Gamble have solved the problem with heavy branding: Tide, Bounty, Charmin, Crest, Oral-B, etc., etc.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Procter_%26_Gamble_brands

Each brand exists as if it's a complete and separate company. While I doubt there's many people who haven't heard the name "Procter & Gamble", most people use their products without realizing that they're using a P&G product. Some P&G brands might even compete against each other.

There is no reason that Yahoo needs to "glue" it's products into some sort of "Yahoo identity." In fact, if the Yahoo! "brand" is dying, they could opt to kill it off entirely and go the branding route. Keep Flickr as "Flickr" and Tumblr as "Tumblr." They're solid brands unto themselves. I think that even gives Yahoo an edge because people, psychologically, become more likely to use something that stands on it's own rather than gets package-dealt with something else. For example, psychologically people tend to think "If Yahoo Search sucks then Yahoo sucks and so 'Yahoo Flickr' must suck too." Keep the branding separate. Flickr = Flickr, Tumblr = Tumblr and then only people who are really passionate about their reasons for liking or disliking specific corporations will care that Flickr and Tumblr just happen to be owned by Yahoo.

Google has a really good thing going with Youtube, as a brand, and should *not* try and integrate it with the Google name in any way. Notice how many steps in that direction have resulted in negative blow-back. Like trying to force people to use their real names for comments, and link their Youtube accounts with a Google account. I used to have a registered Youtube account, I don't anymore because of that. Gmail was a success story, and in some ways it might qualify as a brand unique from "Google", but people think of "Google" as a search engine. They'd be better off keeping it that way. Blogspot should stay Blogspot, Chrome should stay Chrome. There's no reason not to drop the "Google" name from each of those brands entirely and let them stand on their own. While this is pure conjecture, I kind of suspect that Google Plus may have had a slightly better chance of succeeding as a Facebook killer if they had done a better job with branding, and not associated it with Google. It should have focused entirely on what separates it from Facebook and makes it *unique and compelling* instead of "Hey Google has one too!" ... the appropriate response to that was "so what?"

Apple is a total anomaly in the world of branding. They've created an "Apple Identity" and their indivdual brands have been able to benefit from that. But it also puts their individual brands in potential jeopardy becuase if the Apple brand takes a hit it's more likely to trickle down to their individual products.

Yahoo could be very successful as a holding company with many unique brands that each focus on their own individual "identity." They don't need to integrate a thing or attach the Yahoo name to any of them. Just let each product shine on it's own.

+ - Debian 7.0 "Wheezy" Released->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "As targeted and anticipated the stable version of Debian 7.0 "Wheezy" has been officially released. The new feature set of Debian 7.0 is extensive, the foremost being Multiarch support that would allow users to install both 32-bit and 64-bit software on the same system without having to worry about manually resolving the dependencies as they will be done automatically. Other features are improved installer, software speech support, cloud deployment improvements, and multimedia codecs among others."
Link to Original Source

+ - Debian 7.0 "Wheezy" Released->

Submitted by kthreadd
kthreadd (1558445) writes "The Debian project has released version 7.0 (codename "Wheezy") of their popular free software distribution. A major new feature in this release is multi-arch support, simplifying installation of packages for different architectures on the same system. The installation system has also seen a lot of improvements; it now allows Debian to be installed using software speech. It also supports installation on UEFI for the AMD64 architecture, although not yet with "Secure Boot." The Linux kernel has been upgraded to version 3.2 and the FreeBSD kernel is available in both version 8.3 and 9.0. Most packages has also been updated to newer versions."
Link to Original Source

+ - Debian 7.0 "Wheezy" released->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "After many months of constant development, the Debian project is proud to present its new stable version 7.0 (code name "Wheezy").
This new version of Debian includes various interesting features such as multiarch support, several specific tools to deploy private clouds, an improved installer, and a complete set of multimedia codecs and front-ends which remove the need for third-party repositories."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:The definition of PC (Score 2) 184

by garett_spencley (#43239127) Attached to: Apple Yanks "Sweatshop Themed" Game From App Store

It is exactly, every one bit, a "straw man" argument because not one single person is making any of the claims that you are saying they make. You are building up an argument for the sake of tearing it down. That is a "straw man" by very definition.

Your post shows a complete lack of having even read my paragraph, which clearly stated that to many abortion is about preventing a murder, and has nothing to do with "wanting the woman to do anything." To them it is about preventing a wrong, not enforcing a particular behaviour or forcing a woman to do anything. And once again, that is THEIR position, not mine. I am probably more "pro choice" than most on the pro-choice side.

Those who do not understand Unix are condemned to reinvent it, poorly. - Henry Spencer, University of Toronto Unix hack

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