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Comment: Re:Bricking or Tracking? (Score -1) 76

They want to prevent people from using new communication technology to self-organize and make the existing government obsolete.

Or maybe it's that I want to use mobile as a platform to develop new communication technology that will let people self-organize and make existing government obsolete, but this renders the enterprise pointless.

Yeah, probably that second one.

Comment: BooksKindleAudiobooks (Score 1) 71

by PopeRatzo (#47716245) Attached to: Do Readers Absorb Less On Kindles Than On Paper? Not Necessarily

(Note, I tried to make the subject line read, "Books>Kindle>Audiobooks", but for some reason, Slashdot removed the ">"s.)

I absorb least of all from audiobooks, only partly because I usually fall asleep in the first five minutes.

Ever since the Kindle app got rid of the little graphical representation of where you are in the book (like a timeline, at the bottom, where you saw whether you were 1/4 of the way through, halfway or close to the end), I've been a little uncomfortable with my ebooks.

Say what you will about those old paper-and-board book things, at least you knew exactly where you were, and could get some mental image of the progression of the narrative arc. So when you'd only got maybe 1/10th of the book read (based upon the fact that only a little bit of the book was on the left hand side) and you were reading a mystery, you could pretty much rest assured that there were some pretty big plot twists to come. Maybe that has something to do with any less absorption from ebooks (if there really is less, which I doubt this study proves).

Even so, I read mostly everything on a tablet, except sheet music. And when a really good sheet music e-book reader (and editor) comes out at less than $2000, I'm going to grab one. Musical manuscripts are just too small, even on a 10" tablet. I need to be able to see two pages of music at a time (at least).

Comment: Re:Phone permissions suck (Score 1) 91

by Solandri (#47716149) Attached to: Your Phone Can Be Snooped On Using Its Gyroscope
You can thwart this if your phone is rooted. At first I used an app which blocked apps from accessing certain features and data I didn't want them to see, like my location. But then they started to make apps crash when they were blocked this way.

I'm currently using xprivacy. It generates fake data for things like location, networks, and sensors. If the app insists on getting my location and I don't give it that permission, it still gets a location. But that location is a random place in the world. Same for networks and sensor data - it'll get fake SSIDs if I don't give it network access, fake gyroscope readings if I don't give it permission to access the gyros.

Be forewarned, xprivacy is a PITA to install (uses the xposed framework) and set up (newer versions query you when an app makes a request, so you don't have to set everything blind). But after a few weeks of pain getting everything in place, it's been smooth sailing.

Comment: Re:well.. (Score 1) 16

by PopeRatzo (#47716029) Attached to: A statement to ponder

The ad hominem was not yours, it was in the article you approvingly cited from The Federalist.

A hundred years ago, the first group of progressives concluded that this country needed to change in a big way. They argued explicitly for a refounding of the United States on the grounds that the only absolute in political life is that absolutes are material and economic rather than moral in nature.

The people from that "first group of progressives" that I cited were starting purely from moral grounds, and demanding that the United States live up to the morality professed by the very "federalists" from whom the group got its name.

Comment: Re:No difference (Score 0) 71

by MightyMartian (#47715819) Attached to: Do Readers Absorb Less On Kindles Than On Paper? Not Necessarily

I agree completely. When I first started using an dreaded (an old LG keyboard phone with a JavaME spun reader I had hacked on to it) I found reading a bit of a chore. It took me a few days to get really comfortable with the seemingly small and yet ultimately pricing differences. Now I regularly read books on my smartphone and tablet without a hitch, and have noticed no recall problems.

Comment: Re:Why is this Google's problem? (Score 1) 132

by Solandri (#47715813) Attached to: Google Receives Takedown Request Every 8 Milliseconds
That analogy doesn't work. For it to work, lots of other people have to have put up signs pointing to you saying "Small cock." Google just provides a list saying who has the most such signs pointed at them. i.e. Google is just providing a numerically sorted statement of fact, not making up new signs. Removing an entry from Google doesn't change the fact that all those other such pointers out there in the web continue to exist and continue to say you have a small penis. Indeed, once you've used Google for a while to find copyrighted content, you quickly learn which sites consistently rank high on Google, and are best for finding such files (e.g. for unlicensed current anime scanlations). After a while you just bookmark them directly so you can skip Google.

Anyhow, the way the DMCA is worded, Google has to remove these links or face liability for being an accessory to copyright infringement. So it's a moot point. If you have a problem with the morality of it and want to change it, you need to change the DMCA.

Comment: Re:Nobody else seems to want it (Score 2, Insightful) 308

by hairyfeet (#47715259) Attached to: Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

Actually Google is taking a page from MSFT and is going EEE on Android and if the rumors are true Win 9 will either be free or insanely cheap so...good luck with that.

BTW what Torvalds SHOULD have said was "I want the desktop....but not enough to give up my shitty 1970s throwback driver model" because you look at the forums and a good 90% of what the problems in linux get boiled down to is that shitstorm of a driver model, it'd be like MSFT trying to build Windows 9 on top of the old DOS .INI drivers because when you have such a fundamental thing old and shitty it makes all the new stuff on top just new and shitty. BTW this is NOT a FOSS thing, its a LINUX thing, as nobody in the FOSS world besides Linux uses his shitty driver model, not BSD, not Android, NOBODY.

Comment: Re:Flaws? (Score 1) 161

by lgw (#47715107) Attached to: Fifth Edition Dungeons and Dragons Player's Handbook Released

The problem with 4e is it dropped everything else. The fixes to combat make it much more accessible to a new generation, and that's great, but a D&D session shouldn't play like an MMO. You need just as much richness in the setting, in open-ended exploration, in diplomacy, in absurdly over-engineered traps, and so on. 4E got some pieces very right, but it's too tightly wound IMO - too much focus on combat, and especially on well-balanced combats. It's a poor system to accommodate cleverness and tactical elements not captured by player abilities.

4E adventures tend to be a set of very-well-balanced encounters all very level appropriate for a party, but that loses much of the charm of D&D. 4E is poorly suited mechanically for "crazy plans that just might work" to take on foes far out of the party's level range (unless they're scripted into the module). E.g., the party wants to kills a group of foes far more powerful than they, so they gather intelligence by diplomacy, intrigue, and seduction, discover a good time and place for an ambush, arrange to blow up a cliff face to drop an avalanche on the foes as they walk past on a marrow path, then attack before the dust settles. Pre-4E, it's fairly natural for a good DM to figure out how that all works and run a fun session around it in a way the players find fair. In 4E you have so little to work with for any of that, unless it was part of the script.

Comment: Oh it'll happen... (Score 4, Interesting) 308

by MikeRT (#47714887) Attached to: Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

The day that the various desktop environments decide to cut out the middlemen. When I can go grab an official KDE install disk that gives me a polished KDE experience with the latest kernel and Wayland from, that's the day Windows will start really hurting. Then I can say to my relatives "Linux? Just go get KDE" and there'll be no confusion anymore. If it's KDE compatible, it's KDE compatible. Load the binary, off you go. Just like OS X and Windows.

Comment: Re:Windows 8 app store? (Score 1) 178

by HornWumpus (#47714507) Attached to: Microsoft's Windows 8 App Store Is Full of Scamware

Troll? Fanboy has mod points and doesn't realize it applies to more or less all the mobile platforms.

The ultimate 'general purpose' is a problem nobody had thought of when the computer was built. To solve that problem you need to program your computer. Programming is the ultimate 'general purpose'!

The degree of technical confidence is inversely proportional to the level of management.