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Power

What Would Have Happened If Philae Were Nuclear Powered? 484

Posted by samzenpus
from the still-going dept.
StartsWithABang writes After successfully landing on a comet with all 10 instruments intact, but failing to deploy its thrusters and harpoons to anchor onto the surface, Philae bounced, coming to rest in an area with woefully insufficient sunlight to keep it alive. After exhausting its primary battery, it went into hibernation, most likely never to wake again. We'll always be left to wonder what might have been if it had functioned optimally, and given us years of data rather than just 60 hours worth. The thing is, it wouldn't have needed to function optimally to give us years of data, if only it were better designed in one particular aspect: powered by Plutonium-238 instead of by solar panels.

Comment: Re:Timely (Score 2) 103

True, but what about mid-complexity applications, such as office productivity or file management? I'm not convinced that modern (and Modern) UIs really make the "getting to know how to use it" part any faster for them. Why, when I use Office, I often find myself asking the web search engine from a Microsoft competitor about where the designers have hidden some function. For instance, in Access 2007 they hid document-relative actions amid the program-relative options inside what old-schoolers would call a "menu hierarchy" which was visually attached to a pulsating globe in a corner of the screen. In Windows 8, they went a step further and hid fundamental actions, such as "turn off the pc", or "put away everything that I'm working on and switch to the last Modern-style application that I have used", behind esoteric mouse gestures that give the user no visual clue about how to trigger them before he has actually performed them, and very little clue about what's going on aftern he's performed them (possibly by mistake).

Of course, it's also possible that I'm getting old.

Android

Visual Studio 2015 Supports CLANG and Android (Emulator Included) 192

Posted by timothy
from the exigent-realities dept.
Billly Gates (198444) writes "What would be unthinkable a decade ago is Visual Studio supporting W3C HTML and CSS and now apps on other platforms. Visual Studio 2015 preview is available for download which includes support for LLVM/Clang, Android development, and even Linux development with Mono using Xamarin. A little more detail is here. A tester also found support for Java, ANT, SQL LITE, and WebSocket4web. We see IE improving in terms of more standards and Visual Studio Online even supports IOS and MacOSX development. Is this a new Microsoft emerging? In any case it is nice to have an alternative to Google tools for Android development."
The Military

Alleged Satellite Photo Says Ukraine Shootdown of MH17 338

Posted by timothy
from the if-the-glove-won't-fit dept.
theshowmecanuck (703852) writes A group calling itself the Russian Union of Engineers has published a photograph, picked up by many news organizations (just picked one, Google it yourself to find more), claiming to show that MH17 was shot down by a Ukrainian fighter plane. The interesting thing is the very quick ad hoc crowd sourced debunking of the photograph using tools from Google maps, online photos/data, to their own domain knowledge backed up with the previous information. It would be interesting to understand who the "Russian Union of Engineers" are and why they in particular were chosen to release this information.
Programming

Microsoft To Open Source .NET and Take It Cross-Platform 524

Posted by Soulskill
from the april-fools-headlines-from-10-years-ago dept.
An anonymous reader writes: Microsoft today announced plans to open source .NET, the company's software framework that primarily runs on Windows, and release it on GitHub. Furthermore, Microsoft also unveiled plans to take .NET cross-platform by targeting both Mac OS X and Linux. In the next release, Microsoft plans to open source the entire .NET server stack, from ASP.NET 5 down to the Common Language Runtime and Base Class Libraries. The company will let developers build .NET cloud applications on multiple platforms; it is promising future support of the .NET Core server runtime and framework for Mac and Linux. Microsoft is also making Visual Studio free for small teams.

Comment: Re:If this were ten years ago, I would have (Score 1) 268

by peppepz (#48360205) Attached to: GNOME Project Seeks Donations For Trademark Battle With Groupon

No,

No? From the message:

at this point in time I'd advocate against Mozilla, Libreoffice, XFCE or LXDE to switch to GTK 3. They value their independence from GNOME too much.

My comment didn't contain any statement of value about GTK3 or GNOME, so I can't understand the rest of your message about being dickish, lazy, Enlightenment looking bad, me forcing other people to solve my problems, and so on. Perhaps you're talking in general about the attitude you perceive here on slashdot towards GNOME 3, but then if you do that in reply to a message of mine, you make it look like I said any of the stuff you're talking about. Which is not the case.

Comment: Re:If this were ten years ago, I would have (Score 1, Flamebait) 268

by peppepz (#48359973) Attached to: GNOME Project Seeks Donations For Trademark Battle With Groupon

Which is why at this point in time I'd advocate against Mozilla, Libreoffice, XFCE or LXDE to switch to GTK 3. They value their independence from GNOME too much.

What's the difference between "I advocate against projects that value their independence from GNOME to use GTK 3" and "I don't want you to use GTK 3 outside of GNOME"?

Advertising

Why the Time Is Always Set To 9:41 In Apple Ads 109

Posted by samzenpus
from the ticking-away-the-moments-that-make-up-a-dull-day dept.
jones_supa writes If you have looked carefully, the clock has traditionally been always set to 9:42 in Apple advertisements. You could see it across various commercials, print ads, and even on Apple's website. The explanation is simple: That's the time in the morning that Steve Jobs announced the very first iPhone in 2007. Around 42 minutes into his keynote address he said "Today Apple is going to reinvent the phone." The picture of the phone was carefully scheduled to pop up at that moment. "We design the keynotes so that the big reveal of the product happens around 40 minutes into the presentation", Apple's Scott Forstall confirms. The time was even slightly tweaked in 2010, when the very first iPad was released, so that when it was revealed, it displayed a different time: 9:41.
Medicine

Gates Donates $500M+ To Fight Malaria and Other Diseases 106

Posted by samzenpus
from the end-the-suffering dept.
jones_supa writes In the 63rd annual meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene in New Orleans, Bill Gates announced that he will donate over $500 million to fight malaria and other infectious diseases in the developing world. Gates described the Ebola epidemic that has killed more than 4,900 people in West Africa since the beginning of the year as a "critical moment in the history of global health", and said it underscores the need for stronger efforts to stay ahead of disease threats such as drug-resistant malaria and dengue fever. The more than $500 million announced Sunday includes over $150 million to the PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative to advance development of next-generation malaria vaccines, and $29 million to the Clinton Health Access Initiative to support malaria elimination efforts in Southern Africa and the Greater Mekong Sub-region of Southeast Asia.

Comment: Re:super user (Score 1) 58

by peppepz (#48263195) Attached to: Dangerous Vulnerability Fixed In Wget
It's not enough to download some files: in order to be susceptible to the attack, those devices should download stuff as root in recursive mode from a compromised ftp server. I honestly can't see that happening in reality.

(But then again I wouldn't believe that home routers could be sold with an internet-facing backdoor open by default in their stock firmware, until that happened.)

Windows

Windows 10 Gets a Package Manager For the Command Line 230

Posted by Soulskill
from the baby-steps dept.
aojensen writes: ExtremeTech reports that the most recent build of Windows 10 Technical Preview shows that Windows is finally getting a package manager. The package manager is built for the PowerShell command line based on OneGet. OneGet is a command line utility for PowerShell very similar to classic Linux utilities such as apt-get and yum, which enable administrators and power users comfortable with the command line to install software packages without the need for a graphical installer. ExtremeTech emphasizes that "you can open up PowerShell and use OneGet to install thousands of applications with commands such as Find-Package VLC and Install-Package Firefox." It's a missing feature Linux advocates have long used to argue against Windows in terms of automation and scale. The package manage is open to any software repository and is based on the Chocolatey format for defining package repositories."

Facts are stubborn, but statistics are more pliable.

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