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Comment Re: Even Microsoft doesn't know what they mean... (Score 2) 193

They know what they are doing - for the first time in many years. Windows devices are currently 14% of global computing devices sales. Their 1.5 billion unit installed base is already less than Android's 2 billion plus and its advantage is eroding at a billion units a year. It is incredibly fragmented, with only 15% of their own users on version 8+ able to access the latest version of their browser. They must consolidate their base if they hope to leverage it into a credible entry into the mobile space. And they are out of time. If this fails, by the time a "next version" is ready they will be in Blackberry share land because between them Android and iOS will be moving 2 billion units a year, their installed base will be greater than 4 billion, and there are only 7 billion humans - many of whom are too young, one, poor to count at all.

Comment Re: This is pretty common. (Score 5, Funny) 193

Reboot. * Install all updates. Reboot three times. * Uninstall all third party software and start over. * Reinstall the OS and drivers, all service packs, all patches. * Uninstall all third party hardware and start over. * Still a problem? Contact the PC manufacturer.

* Check for proper function.

There. Paste that to a file. You have Microsoft OS support forever.

Comment Re:"Getting into orbit" requires a big rocket. (Score 1) 282

If Musk gets his reusable rockets going, he should be able to lift enough fuel to fully refuel a rocket in orbit with its ground launch capacity of fuel, for about as much money as it costs to launch a disposable rocket now. That ought to scoot out to Mars quite promptly. Like Heinlein said once you're in orbit you're halfway to anywhere.

Comment Anecdote, completely non-scientific (Score 2) 198

We started our youngest two on computers at 12 months. They moved on to tablets not long after. They were reading at a sixth grade level before preschool. Our very youngest has been accepted to and attending a school for the gifted, as she reads at a college level now and is also good at math. She publishes how-to articles online and is working on a serial drama in the fan-fiction genre that has fans among her peers - without prompting or assistance. She's eight. She lies on the forms to get around the TOS. She has gotten her older brother interested in authorship as well. Their littler nephew was showing me the other day how to modify the network settings on my Android tablet to join his Minecraft server. He is six.

Comment Re:Newer apps expect beefier hardware (Score 2) 458

The reason I chose that particular model is that is when the platform became "good enough" for general purpose computing. More is always better but this is the level of sufficiency necessary for ubiquity. Now the price has moved within reach for almost everybody, so ubiquitous it will be. People with premium needs will buy premium products, but folks who can only afford these will be delighted and amazed. The software available for them is more than enough already, and growing every day. The next issue is global connectivity, and that is being worked on.

Comment Re: How? (Score 1) 272

It turns out going fast is an energy problem, not a mass problem, except in as much a mass is a form of energy. Fusion converts mass to energy, so Lockheed Martin says they might have this figured out. Naked fusion propulsion in the gigawatt range (million horsepower) in a form factor that would fit in the back of a pickup truck. A few of those in parallel, a few gallons of water and it's off to the stars at 1G. Being in the exhaust would suck though - wear your SPF 5 billion because it's going to be hot.

Comment Re: (Score 2) 272

These suns have already been this close to our sun thousands of times in the last 4 billion years that our solar system has been thoroughly polluted with life. We have exchanged many megatons of material with them. As some of these suns are 8 billion years older than our sun it is far more likely life came here from there than the other way around.

Anyway, the article neglects that these suns probably have Oort clouds of their own, and a different ecliptic plane, which means theircomets would be coming at an angle Jupiter doesn't protect us from, and potentially at an exceptionally high rate of speed. What with our own comet adventures with Shoemaker-Levy 9 and Siding Spring, Earth interaction with a comet may be more likely than previously thought.

The road to ruin is always in good repair, and the travellers pay the expense of it. -- Josh Billings

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