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Comment: We eat our own (Score 4, Informative) 50

by robla (#44003647) Attached to: Red Hat Makes Supported OpenStack Release

So, to the Red Hat employees reading this: thank you! Red Hat does great work for the world. We as a community also tend to undervalue a $1B/year publicly traded company with a large sales force out explaining to every potential enterprise customer that will listen the virtues of free software.

The Dev Suite thing is kinda cool. Not that I'd buy it :-), but interesting to know that option exists.

Comment: Not a free-for-all (Score 3, Informative) 33

by robla (#39720395) Attached to: Wikimedia Treats Their Operations Like Their Projects

Any changes to the infrastructure need to get reviewed by someone in the Wikimedia Operations staff prior to actually going live, and they tend to be pretty careful about letting things through. Here's the list of changes awaiting review, along with discussion of each proposed change in many cases.

Comment: Classic disruptive techonology problem (Score 5, Insightful) 309

by robla (#38634948) Attached to: Kodak Failing, But Camera Phones Not To Blame

Even though Kodak saw digital photography coming, the problem was Kodak's whole financial structure was tied to film, and digital technology was disruptive technology. They might have been able to sustain the brand by merging with or buying the right company at the right time (e.g. Canon), but most companies have a hard time dealing with technology shifts that vaporize their main profit center. It's not as simple as just knowing what the next trend is; it's figuring out how to gracefully wind down the existing cash cow while giving the new technology the management attention and resources it needs to thrive. Even then, there still ends up being a lot of pain because you can just put all of the same people you had producing film to work in a digital camera business.

Comment: Webkit-based, too (and mod parent up) (Score 1) 182

by robla (#37079810) Attached to: Why Google Needs Firefox

Agreed, though I wouldn't go so far as to say that Google would be upset if Chrome marginalized Firefox through merit-based competition.

The main thing I would add is that it was only a matter of time before someone created a competitive Webkit-based browser for Windows, and there's no guarantee that whoever that was was going to be friendly to Google.

Comment: We had to pick a number (Score 1) 244

by robla (#32588046) Attached to: Wikipedia To Unlock Frequently Vandalized Pages
Hi there, I'm on the team that deployed Pending Changes. We picked 2000 rather arbitrarily, but it actually was a technical limitation driven by our need to limit possible load on the system rather than an editorial decision. Based on rough community consensus, it's actually in effect on far fewer articles as of this writing. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia_talk:Pending_changes/Queue#Using_pending_changes for the community discussion of how and where to apply it.

Comment: Hydrogen leakage (Score 1) 326

by robla (#32189436) Attached to: Possible Breakthrough In Hydrogen Energy
From the Hydrogen economy article on Wikipedia:

There have also been some concerns over possible problems related to hydrogen gas leakage.[50] Molecular hydrogen leaks slowly from most containment vessels. It has been hypothesized that if significant amounts of hydrogen gas (H2) escape, hydrogen gas may, because of ultraviolet radiation, form free radicals (H) in the stratosphere. These free radicals would then be able to act as catalysts for ozone depletion. A large enough increase in stratospheric hydrogen from leaked H2 could exacerbate the depletion process. However, the effect of these leakage problems may not be significant. The amount of hydrogen that leaks today is much lower (by a factor of 10–100) than the estimated 10–20% figure conjectured by some researchers; for example, in Germany, the leakage rate is only 0.1% (less than the natural gas leak rate of 0.7%). At most, such leakage would likely be no more than 1–2% even with widespread hydrogen use, using present technology.[50]
...
[50] ^ a b "Assessing the Future Hydrogen Economy (letters)" (PDF). Science. 10 October 2003. Retrieved 2008-05-09.

The implication there is that even if leakage were a major problem, the gas doesn't escape the planet. Even if it did, and we switched entirely to hydrogen, and consumed 100 times the current rate of energy, I have a hard time believing we'd actually make a dent in the oceans. I'm going to guess that, by volume, the amount of oil that was ever on the planet is pretty trivial compared to the size of the oceans. Unlike what happens to oil when we burn it, most/all of the hydrogen would eventually be converted back into water.

Comment: Re:Meh (Score 1) 572

by robla (#32060378) Attached to: FSF Response To Steve Jobs's Letter

If Mr. Sullivan needs [the fact that Jobs doesn't talk about the general problem with proprietary technology] explained to him then maybe he should hold his comments until he understands it. Does he actually expect *every* article, blog post or story to rehash this basic concept?

I think it's reasonable to expect an editorial that complains that Flash is "not open" as its first big bold bullet point would somehow address the reason why Jobs thinks we should care. I know why I care, but it's not at all clear why Jobs thinks I should care.

Google

Steve Jobs Recommends Android For Fans of Porn 909

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the only-flashers-own-trenchcoats dept.
hansamurai writes "After being asked about the App Store's recent ban on 'sexy apps,' Steve Jobs responded, 'We do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone. Folks who want porn can buy an Android phone. You know, there's a porn store for Android, you can download nothing but porn. You can download porn, your kids can download porn. That's a place we don't want to go, so we're not going to go there.' Apps such as Playboy's and the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition are still available on the App Store, however, as they come from 'more reputable companies.'"
Programming

Simpler "Hello World" Demonstrated In C 582

Posted by kdawson
from the non-obfuscated dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Wondering where all that bloat comes from, causing even the classic 'Hello world' to weigh in at 11 KB? An MIT programmer decided to make a Linux C program so simple, she could explain every byte of the assembly. She found that gcc was including libc even when you don't ask for it. The blog shows how to compile a much simpler 'Hello world,' using no libraries at all. This takes me back to the days of programming bare-metal on DOS!"
Television

Futurama Voices Could Be Recast 260

Posted by Soulskill
from the bite-my-shiny-metal-*** dept.
Svippy writes "According to reports surfacing on the Internet, Futurama may be recast. The animated series is due to return next year on Comedy Central, but may not be the same as we once knew it. 'As part of the announcement, the show's producers said stars including West, Sagal and DiMaggio had all signed on to return. Turns out that wasn't true. The stars had all expressed interest in returning. But with the budget for Futurama dramatically slashed, the salary offers came in well below what the thesps were asking.' Phil LaMarr posted 20th Century Fox's request for auditions on his Facebook page. However, some are skeptical about whether it's a real casting call or purely a stunt to reduce the salaries of the voice actors."
Media (Apple)

Casinos Warn iPhone Card-Counting App is Illegal 462

Posted by timothy
from the you-may-only-use-your-regular-brain dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Gaming commissions in Nevada are informing casinos that a new card counting program has made its way to the Apple iPhone, called Hi Lo. This program can be used in the Stealth Mode. When the program is used in the Stealth Mode the screen of the phone will remain shut off, and as long as the user knows where the keys are located the program can be run effortlessly without detection. Randall Sayre, of the Nevada Gaming Commission says 'Use of this type of program or possession of a device with this type of program on it (with the intent to use it), in a licensed gaming establishment, is a violation of NRS 465.075.'"
Hardware Hacking

Build a BoxeeBox and Wean Yourself From Cable 335

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the but-what-about-chuck dept.
Since I've been having serious problems with satellite all week, DeviceGuru's submission was really interesting to me. He says "Inspired by Roku's awesome Netflix video download box and impressed with Boxee's free A/V media center platform, it was merely a matter of time before DeviceGuru blogger Rick Lehrbaum would create the BoxeeBox, an Ubuntu-powered HTPC with Boxee serving as its primary media center UI. Based on a 2.5GHz Core 2 Duo CPU, the BoxeeBox has the look and feel of consumer A/V equipment and packs 2GB RAM, 1TB HDD, CD/DVD drive, USB, Firewire, HDMI, DVI-D, RGB, and 8-channel surround sound audio."
Biotech

Doctors Will Test Gene Editing On HIV Patients 263

Posted by kdawson
from the importing-mercenaries dept.
Soychemist writes "Some people have a mutation that makes them highly resistant to HIV, and scientists think that they can give that immunity to anyone with a new type of gene therapy. The first human trials will start at the University of Pennsylvania this week. Researchers will draw blood from people with drug-resistant HIV, clip the CCR5 gene out of their T-cells with a nuclease enzyme, grow the modified cells in a dish, and then return 10 billion of them to the patient's bloodstream. Those cells will be immune to the virus, and they will keep the patient's T-cell count up even if the rest are destroyed. 'We will see if it is safe and if those cells inhibit HIV replication in vivo,' said the lead researcher. 'We know they do in the test tube.'"

When someone says "I want a programming language in which I need only say what I wish done," give him a lollipop.

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