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Comment: Re:Need to be adjustable (Score 1) 257 257

Thanks for the link. I'm not sure if that would help or not.

One of the problems I have with the various, potentially valid ideas people are floating about good chair / table configurations, is that I really don't have the budget to try more than one. So, for example, it's hard for me to drop a few hundred on a chair / table combo, only to find out it didn't work.

Comment: Re:Need to be adjustable (Score 1) 257 257

That's an interesting idea, but I think the problem with a drafting stool is that it pinpoints too much of my body weight on my rear end, rather than distributing it over the entire back of my thighs. That seems to cause problems with sciatica. A decent office chair with a large seat pan seems to be necessary to avoid that problem, at least in my case.

Comment: Need to be adjustable (Score 5, Interesting) 257 257

I worked for one year at a company which offers standing desks. I found them to be pretty nice. It was hard to gauge productivity, because it was also my only time in an open office, so there were lots of other distractions I wasn't used to.

I'm in my early 40's, and I'm starting to run into a variety of back problems from poor posture / poor back muscle tone, as well as carpal tunnel and medial nerve (funny bone) problems from the way I rest my arms on the desk when coding. A standing desk helps with pretty much all of those things, if it can be easily readjusted over the course of the day to accommodate you need to both sit and stand.

The biggest problem is that decent standing desks aren't cheap, and companies treat them like a luxury. I seriously think there's a case for OSHA forcing companies to offer adjustable desks to office workers. Unfortunately, national politics don't currently favor such actions becoming reality.

If I have enough negotiating power, I'll make a standing desk a requirement for any future job I take.

Comment: Re:Please insert Multics subthread here. (Score 1) 403 403

Unfortunately for Multics oldbies, the x86-64 architecture has no hardware segmentation in long mode. So you're not going to see the likes of Multics again.

Of course, address spaces are so big these days that using virtual memory to do file I/O is practical.

Comment: Is this a troll? (Score 1) 403 403

I'm asking because I can't think of a consistent set of features that I would want in "my" best OS. I don't think there's any hope in consensus among /.ers and I don't think that individuals could come up with a single system that encompasses the different uses they put a computer to.

I would want different things from the OS depending on the activity I'm doing on a computer at a given time:
- coding.
- business activities.
- playing games.
- playing media.

Maybe there are features that consistent between all of these activities, but I would think that for the most part different usages would dictate different features and functionality.

Comment: At true "FrankenOS" would have... (Score 0) 403 403

I would expect that it would just have a big screen, continually scrolling messages like:
- Rush Limbaugh is the devil incarnate
- The Republicans are all owned by the Koch brothers
- The Bushes practice devil worship
- Donald Trump is ashamed of his Mexican heritage

Or, do you mean "FrankenOS" in terms of "Frankenstein" and not "Al Franken"?

Comment: Wrong question (Score 1) 48 48

Computers certainly can do those things.

A much better, and much more fundamental question is - "Would a computer ever WANT to paint a sunset, or write a sonnet?"

People have struggled with their own motivations for some time. AI is just beginning to consider these factors.

Can they? Almost certainly. Why would someone want to?

Comment: Regexs..... (Score 1) 371 371

I missed one character in a regex in a monitoring system that would cause it to think all the hard drives in a machine had failed when the machine was booted. Since it only happens on boot, it wasn't noticed until there was maintenance work that powered off an entire datacenter. When they turned the power back on, ~5000 machines all decided their hard drives had failed simultaneously. Took 2 days to clean up the mess.

Comment: Range and Price (Score 1) 636 636

Until recently, production electric cars cost way too much, even when you figure you're saving most of the cost of gasoline over the lifetime of the car. (A 50-mpg Prius will use about $20k in gas over 200-250k miles; a 20mpg minivan will use about $50k, so I guess you can justify that Tesla if you were going to buy a gas-guzzler and didn't need the space.) Hobbyist electric cars can cost a lot less, if you want to do all the labor to retrofit a very used car with electric motors and batteries, but I don't.

But even now that prices are coming down, the range on the lower-cost cars isn't enough for me. It's fine for going to the grocery store, but my office is 40 miles away, and so is The City, so on the days I'm not telecommuting or want to go into the city for something, I need a guaranteed range of over 100 miles so I'm not worried about having to coast home on electron vapors or stop for half an hour at a charging station if there wasn't one near my destination. Battery range declines as the batteries get older, so that means I'd probably need a 150-mile range when it's new to be sure I can get to work when it's older.

Maybe a couple of years from now it'll make sense to buy an electric car; we'll see how long my wife's car lasts, and whether it's worth getting an electric when we need to replace it. The real cost includes adding an extra electric meter and 240v power to my garage space and the cost of storing the stuff that's currently in my garage, because Silicon Valley real estate is too expensive to actually use a garage for putting cars in...

Unfortunately, most lower-cost electric today talk about monthly lease prices, and hide all the other costs; one of the ones that was advertised on the radio did mention something around $5K up-front and 25 cents a mile if you drive over 10,000 miles a year - the reason I'd be buying an electric car is to make my commuting cheaper, and my gasoline car currently costs about 25 cents a mile (10 cents amortizing the purchase price over 200k miles, 15 cents for gas.)

Comment: Re:Infrastructure or the lack thereof (Score 1) 636 636

And now Seattle is going on a war against vehicles by eliminating required parking in new apartments and condos. So everyone must revert to on street parking. Good luck plugging your vehicle into an outlet if you are 200 feet down the street. It's back to gasoline for everyone.

Always ready to jump on a bandwagon, many new buildings in Vancouver are doing the same thing.

Most of our electricity here in B.C. comes from hydroelectric systems, so fossil fuels/emission elsewhere is a non-issue.


Comment: Infrastructure or the lack thereof (Score 5, Informative) 636 636

A middle-of-the-road EV like a Nissan Leaf would cover 98% of my driving. I can afford one easily. I could afford a Model S if I put my mind to it. I've even looked in to buying an old banger and converting it myself.

The problem is I have nowhere to plug one in. I live in an apartment building and there is no wiring in the parkade. Nor is there any requirement (or incentive) to retrofit the building. I've talked to the building management, but we've never come up with any answers.

New buildings must have EV support. Old ones don't.


Comment: Snowden deserves asylum; Assange doesn't (Score 1, Troll) 145 145

Snowden deserves asylum - he's wanted for a political crime, he's clearly guilty of violating US laws, and the US government doesn't accept a necessity defense when they're the ones he blew the whistle on, and even if he got a jury trial they'd make sure no juror who supports him would be picked.

Assange is a different case - the US wants him for political reasons, but Sweden wants him on trial for rape. There's a significant risk that if he goes back, gets a fair trial, and is found not guilty, the US will kidnap\\\\\\extradite him so they can try him for political crimes, and asylum would be appropriate then. But it's not appropriate now.

You are an insult to my intelligence! I demand that you log off immediately.