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Comment: Re:Works great when you want to be seen (Score 1) 52

by steve-san (#49451261) Attached to: How Flight Tracking Works: a Global Network of Volunteers
Thank you for reinforcing most of my comment, except for one little thing:

Eg, a large country like the USA will not have much coverage of primary radar deep inside it's borders.

Fortunately for the USA, you are wrong:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J...
Consider it a lesson learned from 9/11.

Comment: Works great when you want to be seen (Score 3, Insightful) 52

by steve-san (#49450949) Attached to: How Flight Tracking Works: a Global Network of Volunteers
"ADS-B is slowly superseding the ground-based radar systems that have been used for decades"
... until the aircraft decides to become "uncooperative" and turns the darn thing off -- at which point, this (and any beacon/transponder-based system) becomes instantly useless.
Which is why you'll see ADS-B augment, but never completely replace old fashioned search radar anytime soon.

Comment: You get what you pay for (Score 1) 182

by steve-san (#37769452) Attached to: Entry-Level NAS Storage Servers Compared
This isn't about raw storage; it's about an appliance that *just works* (for a long time, in my case). I've had my ReadyNAS NV (pre-Netgear, Infrant version) up and running 24/7 since March of 2006. It never, ever crashes. Administration (when rarely required) is quick & brainless. It cost 700 bucks back then (no drives). Along with my IBM Thinkpad, that's the best computing money I've ever spent.

If I would have built a DIY version, it probably would have needed rebuilding (software-wise) 3 times by now, largely due to my own propensity to keep messing with it.

Oh, I have got plug the ReadyNAS proprietary "X-RAID" feature, too: slap in an extra drive, and the array auto-expands to fill that drive. Zero-config, instant upgrades!

Comment: Re:PC gaming never went away. (Score 4, Interesting) 495

by steve-san (#32800094) Attached to: Is PC Gaming Set For a Comeback?
They're selling in spite of (and now because of) folks like me.
Yep, I was one of those haters when the service came out, but I'm a Steam convert. There's just too much to like. Crazy low prices during sales + the almost instant gratification factor = lots of impulse buys. I find myself visiting the steampowered.com site to check out the current deals.

Sure, you won't be lending out discs anymore, but you won't be losing/damaging them either. OTOH, you get easy access to your old games for as long as Steam sticks around (the only possible catch, I suppose).

I'd never played the Mass Effect series before, then saw them on sale on Steam. Picked up ME1 for 5 bucks! (ME2 is currently $24.) That's a LOT of entertainment per $.

Comment: Re:NMCI (Score 2, Informative) 91

by steve-san (#28748229) Attached to: Open Source Software In the Military
Don't hold your breath. Although the Federal Desktop Core Config (FDCC) only mandates *security settings* for federal gov't XP/Vista machines, many IT PHBs have taken it as a mandate to USE Windows for the desktop environment. Hard to blame them, if you just go by the title of the program. I mean, where's the Linux FDCC, or the Mac version? Oh, that's right... they don't exist (yet).

Add to that the fact that AD, Exchange, SharePoint, OCS (among others) are de-facto standards across the DoD, and you can see where that leaves us for desktop machines. Not impossible to integrate alternative OS's, just very difficult; and nearly impossible to reap all those "MS-unique features" from your Windows servers w/out Windows/IE/Outlook/OCS on the other end.

I think it's safe to say that vendor lock-in has been achieved.

If I have not seen so far it is because I stood in giant's footsteps.

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