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Comment Re:Ossified community (Score 1) 1828

I'm late to the party but I'm hoping that the new powers that be will read every comment once the story has closed. Most of my ideas are either relatively simple code fixes, or fixable by human attention. And I think you'll find that unlike "ban ACs"/"keep ACs", there would be little debate around any of these.

Let's see, how many of my ideas from eight years ago are still relevant?

1. Though it has a long, proud tradition, dupes should be avoided. Slashdot has gotten much, much better in the last few years, but it still happens every so often.

2. Spelling and grammar. PLEASE. And make sure the headlines are parse-able by humans.

3. Useful links. Don't link to a blog post about a blog post about a blog post about a story, unless they have useful commentary that you're highlighting. Just go right to the original. (Or a really good description/summary of it, if the original source is very technical, like a multi-hundred-page published paper.)

4. Fact-checking. Make sure this isn't a hoax. Also, in general, things should be new. Just because some guy just discovered something that someone else posted in 2011, that doesn't mean you need to post about it today.

5. Read the comments. Update the story as needed. If a bunch of people write to say that a story is wrong, fix it!

Other things not mentioned by me in 2008:

1. Use standard tags in standard ways. I think the <i> tag is still broken, though it works in preview mode. And neither

  1. ordered


  • unordered

lists work.

2. Add a "-1, factually incorrect" mod.

3. Add a rich-text editor. Just a simple one -- bold, ital, underline, UL, OL, subscript, superscript, quote, link, and a few others. (Yes, I know the "few others" are subject to much debate. But you can ship a few and revise alter as needed, right?) And/or support some flavor of Markdown. But allow HTML, because Markdown still sucks for common tasks like linking to URLs that end in parentheses, which many Wikipedia articles do. Eg.,

4. I'm not going to say that unicode support is easy, but it's probably not too hard to support a few more basic characters like smart quotes and em- and en-dashes so it doesn't look like ass when you copy and paste text from another website. Decent rich-text editors usually have this built in.

5. Make a decent mobile view. DO NOT a) worry about supporting every feature or b) make it overly app-like. (Related: make mobile apps?) ALL I WANT is to see a story's headline, the body, who posted it and when, and the number of comments. Something like this which I made years ago but got tired of maintaining after the Nth code change. Here is my old project page, which was one PHP script. AvantSlash does much more.

That's all I can think of for now. Just fix all that and then I'll share more ideas. :D

Comment Re:Take back Slashdot (Score 1) 1305

I like that you're here and participating in the discussion. I have a lot of ideas of how to make the site better (both to my own standards and to a large portion of the community's) BUT I won't bother to list them because I'm sure others will make all the same suggestions, and I'm sure other others will suggest the opposite in each case. And for those that everyone agrees on, there are probably technical hurdles to overcome. :-/ But in the unlikely event that you're short of ideas, feel free to reach out and I can totally help you fix this place. :-)

Come to think of it, you should go ahead and post a story: "What would you do to fix Slashdot?" I'd leave a comment there.

I can appreciate the difficulty of the task that lies ahead of you and the rest of the team and I wish you all well. I hope you're able to run a successful site without having to resort to sensational stories and infinitely obnoxious ads. I know it can't be easy to make money from a million angry, twitch-posting, ad-blocking nerds.

That said, make a nice T-shirt and I'll buy it. Basic black with a green / and a white . for $25... sold.

Good luck!

Comment Not any time soon. (Score 1) 165

3D printers may never get there. Lego bricks are injection-molded to very tight tolerances -- 2 to 20 microns, depending on the source you read. (0.0008 to 0.00008 inches) Google "lego tolerance" to learn more. Even 20 microns is still less than a thousandth of an inch. Warm, freestanding plastic isn't currently close. Even if a printer can put down a 20-micron-thick layer of plastic, that doesn't mean you can build a vertical wall and maintain that precision the whole way.

And you can't even make a slightly larger brick and sand and polish it down to fit, because the inside dimensions are just as important for fitting bricks together. Anyone can make a precise cube, but making a 5-sided box with perfect 1.6mm thick walls is a whole different project.

Comment Re:Richest company in the world (Score 1) 269

He wasn't just *whining* randomly to a reporter one day. He was *explaining* why the numbers were what they were during the company's quarterly earnings call. The people on those calls kinda wanna know that shit.

"Companies headquartered in the United States with securities traded on a U.S. based stock market or other exchange are required to file audited annual reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Form 10-K following the end of a fiscal year and unaudited reports on Form 10-Q following the end of a fiscal quarter. These companies announce earnings and generally hold an earnings call quarterly."

Comment Fucking copyright vultures (Score 4, Insightful) 349

I'm all for copyright, but set it back to 14 years, and no extensions. As far as I can tell, the current system allows for just two things:
1) People can take from the public domain but never contribute
2) People can profit off their dead ancestors' work.
Neither is particularly good for the public at large.

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