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Comment: Re:Why not buy assembled? (Score 1) 391

by turing_m (#47588249) Attached to: How long ago did you last assemble a computer?

Why? Because I'm particular about what I want. It should be very reliable, low idle power (as it will be mostly idle), relatively performant, practically silent, easy to clean (e.g. positive pressure with filters on the inlets) and good value. If you want all that, there's no substitute for researching each component and how it fits with the others. It's nice having a system that is better (for me) than anything off the shelf. Often reliability, low power, and practically silent go together. SPCR (Silent PC Review) is my reference for case, PSU, heatsink and fans. Anandtech and others are references for performance and power consumption. A question you will need to ask is, what do I need the performance for? It depends on what you do.

Usually, I find that the best components are a rung or two down from the highest performing part (e.g. GPU or CPU). Something that has ~85% of the performance for a very low idle power, is the best choice. These will be much easier to cool effectively and relatively silently.

At the cost of spending a few days researching, I've got a machine I can live with for years and does not bug me, that will last a long time because it runs cool and has proven reliable parts, and performs well enough while being inexpensive to run. I've found the Antec P-18x series and successors to be the best cases for silence, cooling and filtration, the Seasonic X series PSU the best combination of reliability, silence and efficiency, the Coolermaster Hyper 212 Plus series to be a heatsink offering really good silence and cooling at a great price. After that it's a matter of reading newegg reviews and such to judge reliability of components and other factors. I usually go with AMD because they usually offer better value at a given performance point.

Comment: Re:War of government against people? (Score 1) 875

by turing_m (#47202647) Attached to: America 'Has Become a War Zone'

Meh. Gun ownership is an extraneous factor as far as violence is concerned. If you want to see the primary factor, it's right on this page. Check out the sub-region section. Certain peoples have (much) greater proclivities to kill than others. Wherever people end up, they tend to exhibit similar homicide rates as a group to others of their same racio-ethnic group. This has all sorts of implications, like where you want to have your kids go to school, how you lower the crime rates if you are running a city or country, etc.

This hate fact will turn a lot of people purple with rage. But just keep telling yourself it's all culture, that no matter into what larger culture people are transplanted into, their behavior is similar, it can't possibly be genetic in basis. And yet whatever the cause is, this phenomenon is certainly predictive. For others this little factoid is hopefully enlightening. Have a nice day.

Comment: Re:Tablets (Score 1) 386

by turing_m (#46836837) Attached to: iPad Fever Is Officially Cooling

Tablets are wonderful little machines for two sorts of people. First, those who aren't heavy computer computer users; the grandmothers of the world who check their email once a day. The tiny screen and on-board keyboard are no major inconvenience because they don't use either enough for it to become a significant problem. The small form factor means the tablet is easy to tuck away when not in use (unlike the big bulky computer which dominates whatever corner it sits in) and its uncomplicated OS makes it easy to use. The other group are people who want it solely for media consumption, whether that takes the form of watching a movie, listening to music, reading articles on the web or playing uncomplicated games. Some of this latter group will also have a proper computer and use the tablet as a supplementary device.

The right tablet is also a wonderful little machine for a businessman, especially a business traveller. The Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 is roughly the size of an A4 sheet of paper. It has displaced my notebooks. If anyone is still using a daily planner, it can displace those too. I now do the vast bulk of my writing with a stylus. I will be able to keep all my notes on the tablet (with optional external backup) for the rest of my career, instead of having just the last month or two and nothing beyond that. So that's awesome right there. For anyone who takes handwritten notes on paper, this is potentially a killer app.

If I travel I can connect to the company servers, I don't have to use apps locally. I can email, which is one of the main uses. If I really need to do something in an office suite locally, I can use the openoffice port for Android. I can get a local microSIM so that between the Note Pro and my phone, I've got internet. And for travelling, I can put the bulk of my documents on the Note Pro, which makes it really convenient to travel with hand luggage only because my IT and document needs are contained within a small, flat volume well within a kilogram of mass. All I need to charge it are the USB cords and a dual USB charger that handles the 2.1A for both ports, for phone and tablet.

So you can see that there are several points where the Note Pro is more useful than the Surface Pro 2. Bigger surface that is closer to proper notebook size, no special charger required, you can use one of those portable USB batteries for your phone and your tablet. MicroSIM for internet. Somewhat longer battery life. Android Play Store. Many of the professional reviews completely miss the point of the Note Pro and say that it is too large and costly, despite the fact that it can do most/all of the relevant tasks of laptops, has similar screen size, and is thinner and lighter than any of them, while being less expensive.

Samsung, if you are reading this, you need to improve your clunky access to S-notes. I ought to be able to read the full titles to the notes, with a date and a title, without truncating the end. The default title with the date also should optionally be year-month-day order, e.g. 20140424-note_title, so that I can sort/browse the list of note files in chronological order. And also, I want to devote a whole desktop to just notes, so that I can quickly search through them. Rather than the measly quarter window that is all that you allow me to dedicate to the task. And this note browser should allow some sort of detail/list view rather than the myopic large icon view that is the default.

Another thing that ought to be available is the ability to convert the handwritten notes into a text stream for searching. Shouldn't be that hard considering that the order the stylus strokes were laid down is probably recorded. It won't be 100% of course but would still probably be useful enough for search.

Comment: Re:We already tried "Hug and Release" (Score 1) 752

by turing_m (#45405371) Attached to: Sweden Is Closing Many Prisons Due to Lack of Prisoners

It is testament to the naivety and stupidity of some people on here that your comment is modded 1 and the one above you is modded +5 insightful, which is wrong for all sorts of reasons, including the one that you state. Most importantly, ethnic/racial background is vastly different between Sweden and the USA, and that is the number one factor in crime rates around the world. Just take a look at a map of homicide rates around the globe. Take a look at rates of homicide within the USA. I guess the crime rate in Detroit is because of the schools or something.

Just repeat after me, "people are fungible", "people are fungible", "people are fungible", and all your dreams will come true. That dumb kid you knew in the first grade - his problem was that the teachers just would never try hard enough. He could have been Don Knuth if only his parents gave him the Tiger Mother treatment. Ted Bundy - with a well enough designed re-education camp ("Murders are bad, mmmmkay?"), would have been a great contributor to society.

Comment: Re:Not that big of a deal... (Score 1) 1143

by turing_m (#45385677) Attached to: EPA Makes Most Wood Stoves Illegal

I'm generally conservative, but if there are other conservatives who are up in arms about this, it's because they are stupid. The fact is that more efficient and cleaner burning stoves exist right now, they are not prohibitively expensive, and they will pay for themselves over time anyway.

If it's about being selfish, better my kids and I don't have asthma than someone else has to fork out some money for a new stove that will work out better for them anyway. On this issue, if stupid inefficient wood burning types want to form an armed revolution about it, be my guest. I hope the revolution gets put down as brutally as possible. Think Tianamen square or Waco.

Comment: Re: Good (Score 1) 1143

by turing_m (#45385439) Attached to: EPA Makes Most Wood Stoves Illegal

Actually, no they won't. What they don't tell you is that a RMH will only heat the (small) room it is in, and things in close proximity.

I've done the math on rocket mass heaters and there is not enough energy in the amount of wood they claim to burn and heat a whole house the way they claim to. There is only so much energy in wood, a RMH is not a Mister Fusion. If a RMH is heating a whole house it is because they have managed to insulate the whole house very well. The key then is in the insulation, not in the form of heating.

The fact is, commercial wood stoves like the Burley range (and I don't work for Burley, but I've looked at what I would buy if I was going to buy a wood stove) heat at ~90% efficiency, burn very cleanly, and are inexpensive to buy. There is only one stove I know of that has a higher efficiency, but is many times the price.

Comment: Re:Older = how old? (Score 1) 264

by turing_m (#42689869) Attached to: Can a New GPU Rejuvenate a 5 Year Old Gaming PC?

After five years, it's really not that expensive to upgrade a lot of stuff if your mobo was cutting edge at the time you bought it. Memory is now cheap and very useful - no slowdowns with lots of tabs and VMs open. A new CPU is probably 4 times faster than your old one, and also inexpensive. It won't be top of the line, but it may hold its own with a mid-range solution. And you've probably already bought an SSD for a boot drive because it was stupid not to.

At that point, for half the price of a new PC (as you haven't upgraded case, PSU, mobo or heat sink) you've just made yourself a non-upgradable, but respectable mid-range computer that will last another 5 years or longer depending on duty. Even your GPU is not wasted, because if you want to make a new machine you can just put your old GPU back in it and migrate the new GPU to the new PC.

Comment: Re:Also depends on the game (Score 1) 264

by turing_m (#42688783) Attached to: Can a New GPU Rejuvenate a 5 Year Old Gaming PC?

Some games hit the CPU much heavier these days than they used to. Many games really don't perform well if they aren't given multi-core CPUs with reasonable speed.

One thing to bear in mind with gaming benchmarks - they are performed running just the game, to keep everything else equal. In real world use it's nice to have the flexibility not to have to close down your browser and other applications, especially if you aren't the only user logged into the system. For that reason, you want more cores than you need just for the game. Maybe a quad core if you want dual core performance, or hex core if you want quad. And given how games have adapted to using multiple cores, it would pay to get more cores than you need if you are going to futureproof.

Comment: Re:God's experiment in free will (Score 1) 1226

by turing_m (#40149087) Attached to: Debate Over Evolution Will Soon Be History, Says Leakey

Who is doing this explaining of morals in the absence of the church? I don't see a lot of this going on. I see a generation of youth who get whatever morality they have from the media they consume, living with one parent who is working hard to pay the bills and glad to hand their children over to the media babysitter. If that media glamorizes crime, violence and evil (because selling that is profitable), then that is what they often decide to do. After all, if there is no real meaning of life, why not do what you enjoy (even if it means making the lives of others hell)?

BTW I'm atheist, not Christian - but I see where society is headed and I don't like it.

Why did the Roman Empire collapse? What is the Latin for office automation?

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