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Comment: Re:Ain't nobody got time for that (Score 1) 206

by unfortunateson (#48364215) Attached to: Zuckerberg: Most of Facebook Will Be Video Within Five Years

Unfortunately, I have more multitasking time when ears are occupied (teleconferences where I'll only need to interject once an hour) than eyes.
It's partly that I prefer music for driving, flying and exercising... but the number of articles on sites such as BoingBoing, Lifehacker, xda-developer etc. that are only in audio or video format that I sigh and say, "Well, I guess I'll never know."

Comment: Ain't nobody got time for that (Score 4, Insightful) 206

by unfortunateson (#48336939) Attached to: Zuckerberg: Most of Facebook Will Be Video Within Five Years

Seriously? 90% of Facebook is currently graphics certainly not worth 1000 words: they literally are about eight to thirty words, total, with some public domain clipart or unlicensed pop-culture icons. I don't do "meme pictures." If I have a message, I type it.

I've never understood the point of podcasts other than for music or other performance: If I want news, I can read it in 1/10th the time.
And video? What, am I deaf and need to see your body language and lips move? Sure, for educational, entertainment clips, and of course cute animals... but otherwise? Nope.

And get off my lawn.

Comment: Same thing they wanted in 1954 (Score 1) 209

by unfortunateson (#48318703) Attached to: What People Want From Smart Homes

http://www.dailymotion.com/vid...

No actually, there's only a few things I want:
* Control of lights with common "scenes" such as turning on the outside lights from more than just the one switch, and turning on lights "ahead" of me when I come in the door
* Monitoring key safety items, such as leaving my garage door open, water in the basement
* One app to rule them all, one app to find them, one app to bring them all and in the darkness bind themL I've got a Nest, a Squeezebox, a Twine, but each app is independent from everything else

Comment: Any relation to Systeme D -- the restaurant term? (Score 1, Interesting) 928

by unfortunateson (#48277779) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Can You Say Something Nice About Systemd?

I wonder if systemd was named with any irony to match the "System D" mentioned in Orwell's "Down and Out in Paris and London" and referenced by Anthony Bourdain's "Kitchen Confidential?"

System D refers to the whatever-means-necessary, MacGyver-ing, theiving, gerry-rigging, etc. that chefs and other restaurant workers may do to ensure that the service works without management or patrons noticing a problem. The term comes from "dbroillard" (Down and Out p78):

"Dbroillard is what every plongeur [dish washer] wants to be called. A dbroillard is a man who, even when he is told to do the impossible, will se dbroiller--get it done somehow."

Comment: Re:symbols, caps, numbers (Score 4, Interesting) 549

by unfortunateson (#48134463) Attached to: Password Security: Why the Horse Battery Staple Is Not Correct

> symbols, caps and numbers are still very useful when the site limits password length.
I disagree: Insist that there must be a cap, and it will be the initial letter in >90% of the cases.
Insist that it have numbers, and they'll either be trailing (often the year, especially if you require two digits)
Insist that it be symbols, and you'll probably find a period or comma at the end (the only symbols commonly available on the first smartphone keyboard screen).

So, now I've changed the two digits to one out of ten, and instead of a random character out of the 70 or so common ASCII characters, I'm probably starting with just one of the uppercase letters.

At one point when I was a system administrator and we only required 6-digit passwords changed every 90 days, I could log in to 3/4 of the computers with "spring", "summer", "autumn" or "winter". When we beefed up to 8 digits with numbers, it would be "spring95", "autumn96" etc.

You've got to make it more random: Pick a phrase, a song lyric, a movie quote. Change a word or two. Make some letters just the initials, a word all in caps, a number substitution: "You light up my life" -> "uL1GHT^ml". That's unlikely to be in a cracker dictionary (until today, of course).

Comment: Unlimited = No Sharing (Score 4, Interesting) 209

The two big catches with the unlimited plan are
(a) you can't buy a discounted phone (which someone above has already mentioned)
but the big one is
(b) you can't hotspot or share the account with other devices

(a) is less of a problem these days: There really aren't discounted phones, just installment payment plans. And I got my latest phone from a relative who's an exec at Verizon (no, I can't get you one too)
(b) is nearly a dealbreaker. I don't like touchscreen typing, so any message more than two lines long I want to use my laptop or tablet keyboard for... but I can't if I'm not in a free wifi zone. Is it worth losing unlimited to be able to occasionally tether? Maybe. At one point there were apps that would let you tether without rooting the phone, outside of the provider's knowledge, then they stopped working, maybe they work again.

Anyone have experience with non-root tether apps on Android?

Comment: #1 Is it loud enough? (Score 1) 253

by unfortunateson (#47972999) Attached to: Do Specs Matter Anymore For the Average Smartphone User?

#1 Does the volume go high enough? (actually, I often want several steps between 4 and 5)
#2 Does it fit in my pocket? (a big complaint of my wife -- most modern phones are too big for anything but a purse)
#3 Can I enjoy watching a movie on a screen that size (I want a 70" smartphone)
#4 Can I watch movies for the whole flight without plugging it in?
#5 How fast does my app appear (which has very little to do with specs, more to do with software)
#6 Can the GPS synch before I miss my exit?

That's enough specs for anyone

Comment: I don't wear a watch, but... (Score 3, Insightful) 471

by unfortunateson (#47872519) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Smartwatch Apps Could You See Yourself Using?

If it could monitor blood sugar without stabbing you for blood, it'd be a great tool for diabetics (not a category I need it for)
If it can somehow monitor whether I've fallen asleep and beep/vibrate (and stab you for blood?), it'd be great while driving, or other dull work

Black hatting: Read every RFID/NFC object I pass my wrist near.

Comment: Physical and Touch Keyboard awful, try Voice? (Score 1) 544

...but I've gotten better results from Swype and the continuous-swipe Google keyboard, than I ever could from the physical keyboard.

I had a 1st-gen Moto Droid with the slideout keyboard, and found that I rarely slid out the keyboard, because (a) it was nearly as inaccurate to use as the on-screen keyboard, (b) it only worked in landscape mode, and (c) I was faster with Swype. The downside of Swype, of course, is that if the word recognition fails to find your word, you're going to have to peck it in all over again. I've been slowly entering all my ethnic cooking terms, but I probably find a couple new words to enter every week.

On the other hand, for anything more than a sentence or two, I will pull out my laptop and type with a real keyboard. I just bought a bluetooth keyboard for my 8" tablet -- I'm looking forward to seeing how useful that turns out to be.

On the gripping hand, voice recognition in Google Now is very, very good at local place names (I'm not sure if it's also indexing off my contacts). Unless you're off the grid, as it requires network access to recognize voice at all.

Comment: written, nothing special. but debugged?? (Score 1) 310

Many years ago, pre cell phones, I was paged by an FDA reviewer writing on a database system I wrote, Friday night at the drive in theatre.

Fixing his proven required stepping through the code (Borland Paradox) over a pay phone in the concession stand, remembering exactly how the code worked, to tweak the behavior.

Admittedly not millions of lines of code, but still a pretty nifty feat.

Comment: What it was actually good for (Score 1, Insightful) 224

by unfortunateson (#46868849) Attached to: 50 Years of BASIC, the Language That Made Computers Personal

Text.

Long before Lisp or Perl, Basic made things much, much easier to deal with text.
C (and its children) had pointers and allocation to deal with.
Cobol, Fortran and Pascal, by default, dealt with fixed-length strings (yes, later versions improved it).

On the Digital operating systems (RSTS, RSX, VAX/VMS -- whose technology ended up influencing WinNT), BASIC was relatively sophisticated, long before Visual Basic: explicit variable declaration, access to database routines, etc. I got a LOT of stuff done where the Pascal and C programmers were spending time just making things work. Speed? Perhaps slower, but most of what I worked on was interactive, where the bulk of the time was waiting for a human being.

Comment: Bose Wave Radio (Score 1) 702

by unfortunateson (#46789539) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Tech Products Were Built To Last?

Scoff if you must -- I'm not using it for audiophile, but as an employee-project-completion gift, it's made a fantastic $300 alarm clock.

I've had it for close to 15 years now (it debuted in 1998). It does exactly what I need: Good UI, wake up to radio, tone or CD with slow volume increase, two alarms. Most CD players I've seen don't last this long, and this thing has been a rock.

If imprinted foil seal under cap is broken or missing when purchased, do not use.

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