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Comment Re:This is good (Score 1) 76

It's amazing it took this long for MS to put out a truly cross-platform solution of Skype.

Keep waiting. There's yet another needless and painful UI change. There's no dial pad so you can only call people who are in your contacts list. Living abroad from the US, 90% of my Skype use is to call landlines in North America to deal with banks, government agencies and the like.

It seems like with every minor update MS somehow manages to obfuscate the UI and make simple tasks such dialing an actual number or removing or adding contacts difficult. Why do they need to keep making this useful application akin to gargling razors?

Comment Re:One (Score 1) 301

I'm sure there are PC laptops that have great track pads, but the software implementation is really a huge part of what makes a pad good. Features things like two-finger right click, and swipe gestures really make the pad great. The sensitivity and physical size and feel of the Apple pad are superior to most of the track pads I've used so far. At least most track pads have ditched the pad+two button design now.

Comment Re:One (Score 1) 301

I used to think all trackpads were terrible, then I used one that actually worked well and haven't used a mouse on a laptop since.

Which trackpad did you like? We give our staff the option of running windows 7 or OS X on their MacBook Pros at work. Most of the staff that uses Windows ends up plugging in a mouse because the track pad support for the Apple pad is AWFUL and generally busted. Under OS X the support is amazing. I think the Apple track pad is the best designed track pad I've ever used. The gestures are great and the *actual* tracking is excellent.

Comment Terrible "Article" (Score 4, Informative) 83

The "article" is three paragraphs and a few quotes full of FUD. There's no real information in there; it contains no good suggestions as to how to check for or deal with bios infections. It takes three clicks to get to a site that actually has some of the research, but that's just a static page listing conference topics. Don't waste another minute on this nonsense.

Comment Re:Best defense is not to care (Score 5, Interesting) 107

I suppose not caring works, but it seems like this is a great vector to turn hardware players into Zombies. If I were a criminal, I could think of a lot of things that could be done with even 1% of the world's internet connected players. Do you really want your Blu-Ray player to be part of a botnet sending spam or participating in denial of service attacks?

If for no other reason, think of the impact on your bandwidth and electric bill. I certainly don't want a house full of hackable hardware. When (if) the internet of things arrives without security and 10% of the fridges, air conditioners, electricity meters, washing machines, pet doors, TVs and driers are all hacked because manufacturers couldn't be bothered to secure them, I think you'll probably care. It will bring the interwebs to its knees.

Comment Re:Nothing New for Sony... (Score 5, Interesting) 391

This highlights the one and only problem with Sony: It is always too expensive.

I think the product longevity issue that Sony has *might* be a slightly bigger problem. I don't have any real data other than my personal experience, but I have owned a slew of Sony products and with the exception of our two Sony CRT TVs growing up, they have all shat them selves within 18 months. The two TVs we had when I was growing up lasted for over 8 years each. I think the second one needed to have a transformer replaced at some point, but that was about $20 in the early 90's.

Other than those two products, my personal experience has been awful. I don't think I ever had a sony walkman that lasted more than 6 months due to stupid things like belt clips that were TOTALLY inadequate for doing anything other than standing still. My Sony amplifier shat itself the same month the warranty ran out. The display crapped out and was eventually repaired by re-soldering and bending the PCBs. My Sony car stereo crapped it's display about a year after I bought it. No amount of blowing, hitting, or poking around inside could fix it. The digitizer in m Sony Clie (late Palm Pilot clone) shat its self a few weeks after the rotary encoder at the base of the display filled with pocket lint and stopped working. After the Clie disaster, I have refused to buy a Sony electronic device. I'm not going to get burned again.

Comment Re:Time to lose Daylight Savings Time (Score 1) 310

I live in Southern Norway and during the morktide (dark time) the sun doesn't rise until well after school starts even with daylight savings time. Sometime in early November is the last time you can see the sun before or after school. In North Norway the sun doesn't rise at all during the dark time. We've come up with good solutions like plastering kids with reflectors and teaching children to pay attention to cars. We also teach drivers that pedestrians have the right of way in intersections NO MATTER how STUPID they are acting. Though we still do the stupid DST dance, it really doesn't change much of anything. The sun goes away, the morning is dark and for the most part kids are pretty safe.

Comment Re:Time to lose Daylight Savings Time (Score 1) 310

Ever had to implement a timezone aware software application?

Ever had to deal with DST support in said application?

Thought not.

The suffering involved is reason enough for DST to go the way of the Dodo...

Making timezone calculations in an application is ridiculously painful even with helpful TZ libraries. In my last program I just decided to ignore DST in my calculations and just fudge everything. This is particularly annoying because it needs to calculate the time in New York, but the computer it lives on is currently in Norway and North America and Europe switch their clocks at seemingly random times each year.

For this particular program it doesn't matter *too* much, but it does lead to weird failures occasionally. Fortunately it's not in a production environment, it's just something that runs around the house.

Comment Re:Time to lose Daylight Savings Time (Score 4, Informative) 310

There are many logical arguments for time change. Whether the benefits outweigh the costs is what is at issue. Welcome to alternate viewpoints, population you don't count, you just want to rant.

What evidenced based arguments can you site? The rationale I have read for DLS involve saving electricity, but as this article suggests, not only does DLS not save electricity, it may actually use more. It also goes on to cite studies that suggest that DLS may actually cause heart attacks. Farmers tend to hate DLS because they get up when the need to get up with no relationship to the clock. When the time jumps around, they still get up when they need to get up, they're just suddenly one hour out of sync with the wall time.

Though to be fair, it may save some traffic accidents due to allowing more people to drive home in the daylight and it may provide more revenue for some retailers. Though there's plenty of evidence to suggest that sleep disruption (like moving someone's wake and sleep time) causes more accidents. The cited article studied shift workers, but it applies to anyone who's regular sleep cycle is suddenly disrupted.

All in all, it looks like DLS shifts on whole causes lots of hassle, probably costs money and lives and should its self die a quiet death in retirement.

Comment Re:Time to lose Daylight Savings Time (Score 1, Insightful) 310


There's no logical argument for the time change. None. The farming argument doesn't make any sense. Farmers don't give a rip what the wall-time is. They get up when it's time to get up and get the work done. They go to bed when the work day is done and they're sleepy. If you have to get up at 3:30 to milk the cows, you get up at 3:30. If the wall clock suddenly says it's 4:30, you still get up at the same time because the cows, corn, and sun don't give a flying FSCK what the wall clock says.

As far as providing more natural light in offices, that may have been true in 1930 when buildings were built without central HVAC with window access for everyone in mind. Though there's precious little evidence that DLS made a bit of difference in the then either. Now all but the "greenest" buildings (and some WalMarts) have their lights on during the work day weather the sun is shining or its pitch black outside.

And my rant continues with the horrible effects on your health. Suddenly changing humans sleep patterns is terrible for general healthfulness and sleep cycles.

In short take your DLS and shove it where the sun will never shine

"Why should we subsidize intellectual curiosity?" -Ronald Reagan