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Comment: Re:The access is not as dire as you would imagi (Score 2) 68

by unencode200x (#48649523) Attached to: Cuba Says the Internet Now a Priority
All true, but there is more to the story. (I'm Cuban by the way and half my family is still there). In much of the country in areas outside of Havana people don't have much and the homes are run down to say the least. They don't even have phones, or much food for that matter. It will take a long time to change that.

Comment: YouthDigital (Score 1) 120

by unencode200x (#48642401) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Resources For Kids Who Want To Make Games?
My 10-year old son is hooked on Minecraft. We signed up at www.youthdigital.com for their games programming class for kids. Basically, interactive ways to learn Java and make fun modules for Minecraft and more. They have other stuff including some things oriented more at girls. I have three younger girls so we haven't started yet.

My son and I are just getting started and doing some things on Kahn Academy too that are fun and we get to spend time together. we're also in a Lego league where we get to use the visual programming software to program Lego's EV3 to do things. It's interesting as the kids started making it do stuff within minutes of using the software.

Comment: UltraBooks are Better (Score 1) 101

by unencode200x (#48491219) Attached to: Forbes Revisits the Surface Pro 3, Which May Face LG Competition
I have a Surface 2 that I tried using for a bit (got it from work) and it sucks, badly. The mouse design is horrible, you can barely see it. A coworker has been testing the 3 Pro for a while as a desktop replacement with the ability to quickly take the tablet/laptop thing and go on the road. He likes it, but he's got a full set up, docking station, etc.

I've had the Dell XPS 12 for almost two years and LOVE it for taking it to meetings and customers at work. Taking notes with OneNote is so easy and the touch screen make it really nice to use. I rarely if ever use the tablet feature. A nice thing about it vs. my iPad is that I can put it on my lap while on the couch at home and browse the web with touch with ONE HAND. iPad requires a stand or two hands and it's just uncomfortable for me.

A few months ago I got just an UltraBook with a 15 inch screen so I could program and work on servers better. It's a Dell Precision M3800 meant to compete with a MacBook but it was Windows 8.1 and touch. It's the best device I've ever had, hands down. Light, beautiful in design and screen, great mouse, touch works great. It's not trying to be a tablet/hybrid thing. It's just a great UltraBook. Don't get me wrong, I love my iDevices too (we have lots of them at home), but for work UltraBooks rock.

Comment: Some BMWs (Score 1) 195

by unencode200x (#48435607) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What's the Most Hackable Car?
Spend some time on Bimmerfest.com there are a ton of BMW enthusiasts and there are all sorts of ways you can hack into the cars' various electronic systems and change things. For example, mirrors fold in automatically when you lock the doors. Windows roll up and moon roof closes at push of a remote button, turning on cameras, feeding video to your GPS or HUD display (from your cameras or another sources), change the cluster display's colors, info, etc., and lots of other things. Mine already has a digital display (called the "sports" display) that shows most of what you're talking about. You can also put the vehicle in different modes (Eco, comfort +, comfort, sports, sports +, and M) that changes both the feel of the vehicle and the displays. For example, sport mode changes the HUD and cluster displays to digital readouts, in comfort and below they are analog displays (digital but the images are of a needle speedometer and tachometer, etc.). Of all the cards I've had this one is the funnest and most hackable.

Comment: Re:It's the OS, Stupid (Score 1) 252

by unencode200x (#48237003) Attached to: Apple's Next Hit Could Be a Microsoft Surface Pro Clone
Sorry to hear man. The mouse pad is multi-touch and has gestures. I turn most of them off as pinch/zoom works like crap on it. But scrolling with two fingers and two finger context menu work really nicely for me. I haven't run Linux on it yet. On Windows Firefox scrolling works great.

I'm looking forward to Windows 10 or whatever the heck they're going to call it to put on this thing. It took a little while to grow on me but it's now my favorite device for real work. Although, I'm getting an iPhone 6 soon so we'll see if that remains true :) Good luck!

Comment: I think BMW does it right (Score 1) 208

by unencode200x (#48086993) Attached to: Studies Conclude Hands-Free-calling and Apple Siri Distract Drivers
I think BMW does it right. You hold a steering wheel button down for a moment and you have Siri with most functionality except things blocked during driving mode. Texting, Calls, appointments, notes, and music all work nicely. It's awesome, easy, and works.

The BMW speech recognition for the vehicle's functions works really well too. If you're busy you also have a live concierge to help with almost anything.

BMW's iDrive is amazing, it's engineered so that you rarely have to take your eyes off the road to operate it. BMW has a whole video and discussion about it. When you do have to look at the screen you can still see the road well. It was designed this way and has been refined over many years. I love it. For example each button has a slightly different shape and height right next to the wheel which you can even "click" with your wrist. They feel different so you build muscle memory right away.

Some of the others out there such as Ford, Lincoln, Toyota, Lexus, and more basically just tried to stick an iPad-like touch screen or Franken-mouse in the cabin that is confusing and distracting even if you read the manual and learn the ins and outs.

Mercedes has something that tries to be like iDrive but fails in so many ways. If you want examples ask. I had a 2014 Mercedes and was so disappointed with the day-to-day usability. The bullet points are there, but it's the little things that don't click.

I spent a lot of time with a lot of vehicles over the last few years as I've bought a few. BMW's tech and perhaps Audi's have always impressed me in how they are sophisticated, understated, and actually really useful. If it was made illegal I would argue against it.

Comment: BMW does it right (Score 1) 208

by unencode200x (#48083999) Attached to: Studies Conclude Hands-Free-calling and Apple Siri Distract Drivers
I think BMW does it right. You hold a steering wheel button down for a moment and you have Siri with most functionality except things blocked during driving mode. Texting, Calls, appointments, notes, and music all work nicely. It's awesome, easy, and works.

The BMW speech recognition for the vehicle's functions works really well too. If you're busy you also have a live concierge to help with almost anything.

BMW's iDrive is amazing, it's engineered so that you rarely have to take your eyes off the road to operate it. BMW has a whole video and discussin about it. When you do have to look at the screen you can still see the road well. It was designed this way and has been refined over many years. I love it. For example each button has a slightly different shape and height right next to the wheel which you can even "click" with your wrist. They feel different so you build muscle memory right away.

Some of the others out there such as Ford, Lincoln, Toyota, Lexus, and more basically just tried to stick an iPad-like touch screen or Franken-mouse in the cabin that is confusing and distracting even if you read the manual and learn the ins and outs.

Mercedes has something that tries to be like iDrive but fails in so many ways. If you want examples ask. I had a 2014 Mercedes and was so disappointed with the day-to-day usability. The bullet points are there, but it's the little things that don't click.

I spent a lot of time with a lot of vehicles over the last few years as I've bought a few. BMW's tech and perhaps Audi's have always impressed me in how they are sophisticated, understated, and actually really useful. If it was made illegal I would argue against it.

Comment: Steve Jobs would never have allowed a bulge (Score 1) 425

by unencode200x (#47922485) Attached to: Apple Edits iPhone 6's Protruding Camera Out of Official Photos
Steve Jobs would never have allowed the bulge. He micro-manged everything down to, literally, the millimeter. He would not like the way it looks, feels in your hand, and has no tactile usefulness. Although, perhaps it could be argued that it would help people not cover the lens with their finger.

A group of us asked a waiter who was about 60 years old to take a picture of us the other day with my iPhone. He struggled with it for minutes and kept putting his finger over the lens. I tried to help him but finally gave up. Got some great pics of his finger though :/

Comment: Re:Past due not reported by companies (Score 1) 570

by unencode200x (#47575729) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
Most checking accounts (from every bank I've dealt with) have free, automatic bill pay. They will either pay your bill electronically for you OR they will mail a check on your behalf if whoever your paying isn't set up in their system. It's convenient, free, and easy. You just have to plan ahead. They want you to use this service as it makes you a sticky customer.

Also since you're "pushing" payments it's easier for you to control, change, etc. as you don't have to log into 20 different websites.

Comment: Re:The American Dream (Score 1) 570

by unencode200x (#47575667) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
Agreed. Obviously inflation needs to be taken into account. But since real income is less, most people are losing a ton money over times. Your home should not be considered an investment.

One things that bothers me are realtors. They artificially inflate the value of homes so they can make their commissions. They're commissions are insanely high for the supposed value they provide. I submit some controls are missing there are there is a sort of monopoly (if that's the right term) on selling houses.

"'Tis true, 'tis pity, and pity 'tis 'tis true." -- Poloniouius, in Willie the Shake's _Hamlet, Prince of Darkness_

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