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Comment: Re: Pass because the price point is too high (Score 1) 80

by slaker (#49688959) Attached to: Intel NUC5i7RYH Broadwell Mini PC With Iris Pro Graphics Tested

You can get an entry-level Mac Mini, sure. It'll be physically larger and it'll be slower. You can also get slower Broadwell NUCs if you're actually price-sensitive enough to make that comparison. Figure that you'll pay $100 for 16GB RAM and $120 for an m.2 SSD + $25 for an Intel or Broadcom wireless card if you think you need one + whatever the barebones box costs ($300 for the Broadwell i3 up to $535 for the Broadwell i7). Apple's pricing on the Haswell Mac Minis is $500, $700, $1000 for an at-best 2.8GHz i5 with 8GB RAM or for a slug-like 1.4GHz ULV i5 with 4GB RAM and a magnetic drive on the low end.
To me it looks like the late 2014 Mac Minis lose out all the way around unless you're THAT hung up on getting OSX preinstalled or think Apple support is magic.

Comment: Re:Pass because the price point is too high (Score 1) 80

by slaker (#49688761) Attached to: Intel NUC5i7RYH Broadwell Mini PC With Iris Pro Graphics Tested

Any mITX rig with stock Intel cooling, a PicoPSU and an mSATA/m.2 SSD actually has plenty of room for airflow since the bulky metal boxes of hard disk and power supply are out of the way. I also find the Antec NSK150, which has a front-mounted PSU, to work well enough for mainstream desktops.

Comment: Re: "The Ego" (Score 1) 553

by slaker (#49615013) Attached to: Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina Announces Bid For White House

My read on the "IRS Scandal" is that conservative groups with iffy not for profit status are upset that laws still applied to them in ways that they hadn't under the Bush Administration. I don't believe the matter will be otherwise resolved while the current administration is in office and moreover, I'm not particularly surprised that executive agencies might have differing methods for enforcing their mandate from one executive to another, especially given the free pass given to some groups under a previous administration.

Comment: Re: "The Ego" (Score 3, Insightful) 553

by slaker (#49613453) Attached to: Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina Announces Bid For White House

Actually, if you were of voting age during the 1992 Presidential elections, you might remember that Bill Clinton was open that he would be working very closely with his wife on the matter. That might have been overshadowed by the spectacle of Ross Perot being a general-purpose sideshow, but it definitely did come up at campaign events and the like.

With regard to scandal or the lack thereof, the closest thing the Obama administration in general has had to one is probably the standard of care for veterans and specifically at Walter Reed. Benghazi has just been an ongoing conservative circle jerk and the Snowden disclosures have really just highlighted the overreach available LEGALLY to the administration.

You might say that the State Department under Obama has allowed relations with Israel to sour in favor of greater ties to other states in the region, but it might also be said that Israel is a big-boy country now that doesn't need the USA to enforce its will. Putin's expansionist aims been an ongoing issue since before Obama took office and the case can certainly be made that the US did not need to intervene on the ground in Iran, Libya or Syria in spite of whatever amount of sabre-rattling conservatives have wanted to do to the contrary.

Bearing that in mind, where do you see scandal in the Obama administration or more specifically in its foreign policy?

Comment: Re: "The Ego" (Score 3, Informative) 553

by slaker (#49613065) Attached to: Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina Announces Bid For White House

She crafted and presented a workable health care bill that was torpedoed for political reasons and would have avoided the current clusterfuck the USA has now.

She also served successfully as secretary of state in an essentially scandal free administration, no matter how much republicans wish it were otherwise.

I'll probably vote green party regardless (that's as much throwing away my vote in Indiana as voting for a democrat), but I do recognize that she has foreign and domestic policy experience in government.

Comment: Re:Big whoop (Score 1) 45

by slaker (#49586481) Attached to: LG G4 and Qualcomm's Snapdragon 808 Benchmarked

I wouldn't mind moving up to a device with 3GB RAM, as I frequently browse with multiple open tabs and can actually run a 2GB device out of memory. CPU performance isn't a major issue for me and you're right that more or less anything with a Snapdragon 800-series is probably just fine, but extra pixels on screen are great, more RAM is great and support for high capacity microSD is great if you didn't already have it.

The G4 is the only current-generation flashship phone with both a removable battery and a card reader, so if those things are important to you, this device is still a pretty big deal.

Comment: Re:Good bye ( and not good buy) (Score 1) 160

by slaker (#49559691) Attached to: Google Officially Discontinues Nexus 7 Tablet

I have a Motorola Xoom that's probably four years old. It's running KitKat now. I had to update the firmware myself, since the last official update it got was for 4.1, but I even have the option to move to 5.0 if I wanted to do so. I also have a Galaxy Tab 8.9 of similar vintage that's completely fine at its advanced age, though I did take the time to replace its battery a few weeks ago.
  I'm not sure I understand what issues are preventing the Nexus 7 from being a decent Lollipop device, but my Nexus also became significantly worse even after a fresh OS install of Android 5.0. Apple doesn't have a patent on decent hardware. It simply appears that a deliberately low-cost, high capability Asus device might've had to cut some corners in the quality control department.

Comment: Can we all agree (Score 4, Informative) 134

Can we all at least agree that the sorry excuse for a motherfucker who made the default iOS keyboard that doesn't change the case of characters with the state of the shift key needs a good shanking?

If there's any single developer that needs a stabbing, it's that guy.

Comment: Re:Real fight (Score 3, Informative) 179

by slaker (#49490885) Attached to: Cyanogen Partners With Microsoft To Replace Google Apps

How would you share data between two apps if both developers didn't support that?

On Android, data sharing is fully handled by the OS, not unlike the copy/paste buffer in most desktop OSes. This means the list of applications with which one can share data is consistent both in terms of content and capability.

Something I've observed to be true is that iOS applications seem to be specifically coded to share data with other iOS applications. A lot of things can share data to Dropbox, but fewer seem to be able to share the same data to Google Drive or Onedrive. Data sharing seems to be a one-way street where the application developer has to support whatever hooks were provided for the target app. At the very least, the list of supported applications for sharing does not appear consistent from app to app, even within the context of a particular data type. I suspect this is in large part due to the iOS security model, but I take issue with that for other reasons anyway.

Everything you mention is fine but I'm not sure there's some killer user story or use case that justifies it in light of the security issues. I don't think any 3rd party app developer should be able to see any of your file system ever, not on your phone. It's just too dangerous, the thing is always on the network, it knows where you live and you can't unplug it.

"I can't think of a reason someone would want to to it, so it must be a bad idea."
There's a 128GB iPad sitting in my office. I have no particular use for a 128GB iPad, but it's still 128GB of flash storage that I could potentially use for something-or-other (yes, I am aware that I can get 128GB flash drives for under $50 but that's what a 128GB iPad is worth to me). Putting that aside, it's storage. On the iOS device, I have to associate everything with a particular application. I can't even use the stupid thing to transfer inert data (that I already had to add through iTunes since the device can't meaningfully interact with SMB, FTP or NFS) that for one reason or other doesn't match up with file size limits on my cloud storage provider's service.
Likewise, I don't have any control over arrangement of data under iOS. I have to accept whatever the device does and like it. That sometimes means making multiple copies of the same file (on a device that's specifically sold on the basis of its storage limitations) for different apps in cases where those two apps can't share data. It also means potentially jumbling a lot of data together that I don't really want to have view that way. Should I really be forced to reorganize my data to conform to the limitations of the device?
Whether or not applications are granted the ability to access a filesystem, the system owner should be able to do that even if it's just an infrequently used option.

Honestly I just spent about 30 minutes trying to find a website where I could even try to download an MP3

Ahem. This is a thing that people do. This is a thing people do all the goddamned time. Yes, you can get an app on iOS that can sandbox those particular downloaded MP3s on internal storage, but look at how ridiculous the workflow is to move those files out of that sandbox and in to the default music app so you can add them to your normal playlists.
Even speaking of podcasts, haven't you ever been browsing on your iThing and wanted to snag a one-off episode of something? "Oh, I want to download the rest of that episode of Fresh Aire that I heard 10 minutes of in the car. Should I open a podcasting app and then the Fresh Aire feed so I can find that one episode that was a rerun originally recorded in 2007 and therefore buried in the feed or should I just search for it from the web?"

One app to play all your music is 1990s thinking; modern apps are meant to brand content and service experiences, instead of them all launching the "native music player" they all call the same native sound API. The mechanics of how the media moves across the internet or across the filesystem is invisible to the user.

My personal tastes are sufficiently niche (contemporary classical music) that I am not well served by music-as-a-service. Nor can one assume that mobile devices have ready access to a high-speed data connection. Many people have bandwidth caps or spend the majority of their time in places where data services are too slow, unreliable or unavailable. That being said, on other mobile platforms I am familiar with, adding music or playlists to a device makes that music or playlists accessible to all audio players on the device. Amazon or Play Music that is copied locally is exposed to each app in turn as well as other player apps that might be installed such as Doubletwist or WinAmp.
As far as I can tell, the only ways to add music to whatever the hell the Apple players are called is through either the iTunes desktop application or from the iTunes store. It's possible to get a third party music application, but that application will be sandboxed so that music used with it is simply not available to the rest of the device. Nothing outside can share music to the native apps, not even convenient tools like Safari and Dropbox. You HAVE to plug the device in to a PC, export and import.

These are more than legitimate issues. I understand that you see them as defensible and that you've adapted whatever personal mobile device workflow you have to Apple's anointed path, but there really are common usage scenarios where iOS is somewhere between moderately unfriendly and actively hostile to user needs.

Comment: Re:Real fight (Score 4, Insightful) 179

by slaker (#49489691) Attached to: Cyanogen Partners With Microsoft To Replace Google Apps

I think you may be working with old information.

Can I store an arbitrary file on an iOS device yet? What if I want to download an MP3 using Safari or Chrome and play it with the native iOS music player? Can arbitrary apps share data without specific developer support yet? Can I do those things without rooting the device?

As far as I can tell the workflow for every single non-intended use of an iOS starts with "Step 1. Get a Dropbox account" and that by itself represents both a clear inadequacy of the platform and a worthwhile acquisition for a company that already has more money than it knows how to spend.

Comment: Re:Thanks, but no thanks. (Score 1) 179

by slaker (#49488847) Attached to: Cyanogen Partners With Microsoft To Replace Google Apps

Honestly, Microsoft applications for Android are credibly useful. If you're in favor of software choice or you want to segregate personal data between services, it's nice that the option exists. I don't really use any stock Android Apps at all anyway. I certainly don't see the harm in letting Microsoft in, so long as I still have access to the Play/Amazon App stores that otherwise give me the broadest selection of all available Android software.

If the Cyanogen people want to ditch Google licensing completely so that devices won't be able to run the Google Application framework (this is a problem for Kindle Fire devices as well), that's a decidedly consumer-unfriendly direction for their software to take.

Too much of everything is just enough. -- Bob Wier