Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Re:Ergo! (Score 1) 452

by pthisis (#49278521) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Good Keyboard?

There's nothing imitation about Mac OS X. It's actual UNIX.

Only in a legalistic sense (they can use the trademark), not in a technical sense.

The OS X kernel name XNU literally stands for "X is not Unix". There's a lot of BSD code layered on top of it, but the core is a non-Unix Mach-based system.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X...

Comment: Re:What's TSYNC ? (Score 1) 338

by pthisis (#49211063) Attached to: Google Chrome Requires TSYNC Support Under Linux

Flash still exist, is still in use by an awful lot of websites, and Chrome is the only way to get this content under Linux.

Quite the opposite in my experience--running Flash is pretty much the only reason I launch Firefox these days.

Most Flash sites are so terrible at detecting Chrome's built-in Flash on Linux that they refuse to run at all--I get the "Hey, this site requires Flash! Download it now!" message all the time in Chrome even though it already has the latest Flash support.

Thankfully HTML5 is making this much less of an issue.

Comment: Re:Alternate Bank of Canada Press Release (Score 1) 223

by pthisis (#49183991) Attached to: <em>Star Trek</em> Fans Told To Stop "Spocking" Canadian $5 Bill
Whoops, is that legal? In the U.S. you cannot decline payment made in cash (if you normally take cash). But it's also illegal to deface money. My understanding is that it is not illegal to deface money in the US. It's illegal to deface coins or bills with intent to defraud, or to deface bills with the intent of making them unfit for reissue/circulation. There are sites like Where's George that are designed to deface currency for the purpose of tracking it, which is clearly not intended to make it unfit for circulation since the whole point is to track it in circulation. IMO it's highly unlikely that spocking US currency would result in prosecution, for logistical reasons alone. And there's a reasonable argument that the reason to spock a bill is to make a joke that will not have an audience if the bill is removed from circulation, and therefore the intent is not to render it unfit for circulation. I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice.

Comment: Re:Same error, repeated (Score 4, Informative) 309

by pthisis (#49126393) Attached to: Moxie Marlinspike: GPG Has Run Its Course
Why use gpg instead of s/mime, which has native support in most e-mail programs, with no need for plugins? S/MIME relies on centralized key servers or opens itself to man-in-the-middle attacks. You can hand-authenticate individual CAs with some effort, but there's no equivalent to PGP's web of trust. And CAs are single points of failure, making them extremely desirable points of attack. Marlinspike, of course, has developed his own proposed solution to the CA problem: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C... It's up to the reader whether this contributes to his credibility on the issue because he knows what he's talking about and has taken the time to contribute code to help fix the problem, or whether he's someone with his own personal dog in the fight and hence has an ulterior motive in denigrating PGP's trust model.

Comment: Re:Simple solution (Score 3, Interesting) 431

by pthisis (#48896709) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Where Can You Get a Good 3-Button Mouse Today?

I presume "real computer" was snark for "not Microsoft Windows".

Selections and the clipboard both have their uses.

Selections are faster and leaner--you can just highlight some text, then center-click wherever to copy it there. It's faster than having to highlight, then explicitly copy with Ctrl-C or whatever, then click somewhere, then paste with Ctrl-V or whatever. It's also guaranteed to give you plain text, rather than bringing along formatting and images and stuff.

The clipboard is more featureful, it's useful when you want to bring along formatting or images or other non-text stuff. It also allows you to highlight another area and paste over it, as you mention. It's also more persistent, so if you are working on code or something and have a string you're going to paste repeatedly, you might put that on the clipboard with Ctrl-C and have it until you explicitly cut something else; you can still do selection copy/paste for quick little stuff in the interim, but still have your main item saved on the clipboard so you don't have to go re-copy it.

Having both is useful. Selections are a lot faster, I use them the majority of the time but still use the clipboard sometimes.

Comment: Re:LOL ... w00t? (Score 5, Informative) 292

by pthisis (#48652717) Attached to: Amazon "Suppresses" Book With Too Many Hyphens

Propose such a "simple" perl script.

Here are some cases it should know how to deal with:

Between numbers (note that slashdot eats some of these characters; the numbers below all have different dashes or related symbols between "555" and "1000"):
"Pages 555–1000 discuss this matter" (this should be an internumeral dash, which is typically an en dash, U+2013).
"Her phone number is 5551000" (this should be a figure dash, U+2012).
"There were actually a lot more of them than the estimated 555—1000, to be precise" (this should be an em dash, U+2014).
"The teacher asked me to solve 5551000. I told him negative 455 was the answer." (this should be a minus sign, U+2212)

Between letters/words you have a similar problem: even if you know it shouldn't be a minus sign (which symbolic algebra makes tough to know for sure, but suppose you could surmount that), you generally have no idea what kind of dash or hyphen it should be turned into.

Comment: Re:100% Agree (Score 1) 567

by pthisis (#48573843) Attached to: The Case For Flipping Your Monitor From Landscape to Portrait

For most all other cases, reading documents, coding, surfing the web, portrait view is better. Think about the flow when you are reading, isn't it natural that you want to see more rather than scrolling up and down?

I'm with you on e-reading.

Landscape is vastly superior to portrait for coding--I always have multiple windows open side-by-side. Stacking them vertically makes line-by-line comparison more difficult. And you can easily have a web browser open on the right half of the screen for stackexchange/docs/whatever while you edit on the left half.

Comment: Re:Competitors? (Score 1) 203

by pthisis (#48445343) Attached to: Corning Reveals Gorilla Glass 4, Promises No More Broken IPhones

At least most studies show it is more shatterproof glass than scratch resistant, which is Gorilla’s forte it seems.

That's too bad, I was about to complain about Corning worrying about drop tests when scratches are a far bigger problem for most people. It's easy enough not to drop your phone, it's difficult to avoid scratches from everyday wear without resorting to crappy screen protectors and the like.

Comment: Re:should be easy enough to change it back (Score 3, Interesting) 400

Yes, but there are rumblings of them trying to launch their own engine again. http://searchenginewatch.com/a...

Yahoo's never been effective at writing their own search engine; they were powered by Google up until 2004, and before that Inktomi. In 2004 they tried their own engine for the first time, but it sucked. In 2009 they cut a deal with Bing.

There's no sense in being precise when you don't even know what you're talking about. -- John von Neumann

Working...