Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:Liars figure and figures lie (Score 2) 130

by Bogtha (#48928287) Attached to: The American App Economy Is Now "Bigger Than Hollywood"

It's true that the majority of the profits in App Store sales is focused at the extreme top, but it's not true that 99.999% of the rest make "near 0". This analysis estimates that the top 3,175 applications earn at least the average annual income for a US household per year, and applications that rank about number 6000 still earn $25K/yr.

And that's only counting App Store revenue. I've earned a lot more than average since I started developing for iOS, and most of the applications I've worked on are free. You don't see things like banking applications earn revenue directly, but the developers responsible certainly profit from it. The Facebook application is free, but you don't think its developers are working on it for free do you? I've been paid to built plenty of enterprise applications that will never appear in the App Store.

There is a huge amount of profit in the "app economy" that will never be accounted for merely by looking at App Store profits. The "app economy" is much bigger than the App Store.

Comment: Armchair engineering at its finest (Score 5, Insightful) 241

by mcrbids (#48920923) Attached to: Engineers Develop 'Ultrarope' For World's Highest Elevator

I'm probably going to lose some karma for this...

I, too, could come with a half-dozen answers that would be "far superior" to what 100+ years of the finest minds in the industry could come up with. But in reality, I really, seriously doubt that my designs would hold up because there's a *reason* that things are done the way they are.

Mechanical engineering is a *very old* industry, and any radical, new design would have significant hurdles to pass before it could be accepted and used in a real scenario. The cost of failure is very high and there are real lives on the line.

My first thought was to use something like a caterpillar drive along the sides of the shaft, each of which would operate like a mini elevator for perhaps 10 floors. But, very quickly, I can see that this type of system would have many, many more moving parts and consequently many more points of failure.

So, I think it *might* be best to trust that 100+ years of experience are, in fact, at work, and that we should first understand that there is *real knowledge* at work before assuming that our half-baked and thoroughly unproven ideas hold any merit in reality.... ?

Comment: Re:Internet Explorer (Score 2) 99

It wasn't impossible to write cross platform browser stuff in the late 1990s, when most corporations started this whole "We'll standardize on browser X" policy making, but it required a discipline that had most developers throwing their hands up in the air in disgust.

I had these arguments many times back then. It was laziness more than anything else. We were writing cross-platform web applications without problems at that time. We were trying to convince other developers to follow the same route, but their attitude was mainly "IE has 90%+ market share, why bother?" They didn't believe a time would come when proprietary IE code wouldn't work - even if other browsers caught on, they were expecting them to copy the IEisms. They certainly didn't believe that even later versions of Internet Explorer wouldn't support their crappy code.

- IE4+ was the most standard. Yes, really. Those versions had a relatively complete implementation of CSS.

Let's not overstate things. Netscape bet on JSSS and when the W3C selected CSS as the standard instead, they scrambled to fix Netscape 4 to convert from CSS to JSSS on the fly. So Netscape 4 was exceptionally bad at CSS. Internet Explorer 4 was merely very bad at CSS. Opera was ahead at that time. I don't think you can call IE4 "relatively complete" unless you only compare it to Netscape 4, which was unusually bad.

Comment: Re:Better Link (Score 5, Insightful) 191

by Bogtha (#48893597) Attached to: WhatsApp vs. WhatsApp Plus Fight Gets Ugly For Users

reverse engineering is allowed, and could be opening themselves up to legal action.

Just because reverse engineering is legal, it doesn't mean WhatsApp are legally obligated to provide their services to third-party clients.

The legal matter here is the blatant trademark infringement by WhatsApp Plus.

Comment: Re:It doesn't have to get it right (Score 1) 489

by mcrbids (#48850871) Attached to: Windows 10: Can Microsoft Get It Right This Time?

I bought a Dell laptop (Precision M3800) last week from the Dell business laptop dept. The sales guys assumed I'd want Win7 and the laptop (by default) comes with Win7 installed. When I asked about that, they said that it "technically included Windows 8 media" but that everybody wants one running Win7.

I find this quit interesting as Win7 has officially gone EOL. Personally, I plan on running Fedora Linux, but still....

Comment: Re:Maybe (Score 4, Informative) 93

by mcrbids (#48798525) Attached to: The Next Decade In Storage

Get off my lawn, blah blah...

Meanwhile, flash has revolutionized storage. We saw at least a 95% reduction in query times on our DB servers when we switched from RAID5 15K SAS drives to RAID1 flash SSDs. Floppies are history, and 32 GB thumb drives cost $5. SSDs have been catching up to their HDD brethren, now just 2-4 years behind the cost/capacity curve, and spinning rust has just about reached EOL, with Shingled Hard drives that make you choose between write speeds and write capacity being a necessary compromise for increased capacity.

I have no idea why you'd be so dismissive.

Comment: Re:Secret Ballot? (Score 1) 480

by mcrbids (#48797407) Attached to: How Bitcoin Could Be Key To Online Voting

You can't have an auditable trail and a secret ballot.

I don't see why these are mutually exclusive. The trick is to set aside the math for the ballots themselves with the math for verifying the ballots.

Let's say you take 100 ballots, and randomize their order. You make hashes of the ballots and hash the sum of hashes. Keep the hash of hashes and you can easily verify that the numbers add up, while simultaneously anonymizing the ballots on a per-voter basis, making it instead 1% likely that any vote can be attributed to one person.

Comment: Re:Any actual examples? (Score 1) 598

by Bogtha (#48738377) Attached to: Tumblr Co-Founder: Apple's Software Is In a Nosedive

he doesn't give a single example of any of that. He just makes the unsubstantiated claim.

Because the point of the blog post wasn't to prove that this was the case, but to offer an opinion on how bad it's gotten and why it may be happening. His audience is very familiar with Apple gear, spelling everything out from first principles is unnecessary and a distraction from the meat of the article. Know your audience.

Life is a game. Money is how we keep score. -- Ted Turner