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Comment Re:The next RSS (Score 3, Interesting) 182

RSS is dying because sites don't like it. People use it as a shortcut to see whether anything on their list of favorite blogs is worth navigating to the site to read. If not, then they won't visit the site, taking page hits (and ad revenue) from the site. I love RSS, but it seems like sites are dropping support for it left and right.

Comment Not necessarily working (Score 2) 200

I bought a cheap Kindle Fire HD ($189) on sale a little over a year ago, and paid extra ($15) to get rid of the ads. I use it to mostly to surf the web, which I do from a sideloaded copy of Firefox. As for ebooks: I buy directly from O'Reilly's website. O'Reilly's books are DRM-free and available in many formats, including the Kindle's preferred .mobi format, and in O'Reilly's case I'd rather the money go straight to the publisher without the middleman. I'll grab a freebie title from Amazon now and then when they're offered. Otherwise, I buy digital music from Amazon occasionally, but having their branded tablet hasn't changed my buying habits at all. For me, they just subsidized my tablet back when 10" tablets were all $400 and up.

Comment Re:I have an idea (which probably makes you cringe (Score 1) 111

I remember Awful Green Things From Outer Space fondly. If I remember correctly, it originally appeared in an early edition of Dragon magazine and later as a TSR boxed set (which I bought). We found the awful green things almost always won unless the crew player found a great weapon (e.g., ray gun) early on in the game.

Comment Metagaming MicroGames (Score 2, Interesting) 111

While cleaning out my closet a few weeks ago, I came across a stack of Metagaming micro games. I played these with friends from high school over thirty years ago, and we really loved them (they actually got more playtime in our gaming group than some of the larger Avalon Hill titles of the time). While the well-known Ogre and GEV were in there, I still have some old lesser known titles like WarpWar, Invasion of the Air Eaters, Sticks and Stones, and Holy War.

Have you considered re-releasing some of the better titles from the old Metagaming catalog?

Comment Happy Birthday (Score 5, Insightful) 110

Between Unity and Mir, it's considered cool to Bash Ubuntu these days, but even their most stalwart detractors have to admit they raised the bar for desktop Linux from the first day of their release. There's a reason it's become both a popular distro and a popular base for derivatives.

Thank you, Ubuntu, and Happy Birthday.

Comment Ask (Score 1) 218

You shouldn't be asking Slashdot why you're not interviewing well, you should be asking the people who didn't hire you. When you get the phone call saying "no thanks", ask them why you weren't hired. You'll probably get a non-committal answer from most, but there are some will tell you what they think you did wrong.

Good luck.

Submission + - Avatar - an open-source operating system for the Internet with privacy built-in (

zer0point writes: A new project aiming to help people to communicate and share more securely without sacrificing user experience or privacy. Avatar runs on top of Avatar Network which is a decentralize, anonymous p2p network based on the Phantom protocol. Users can send messages either inside Avatar Network, or to other social networks like Facebook or Twitter, store/share any data and access popular internet services with few clicks. The project is currently looking for architecture/security experts to help audit the protocol designs.

Comment Re:Q: How many characters lost in Tomb of Horrors? (Score 2) 218

This. I was the DM for our merry little band of adventurers traipsing through the Tomb of Horrors. We couldn't stop laughing. It was INSANE - no one could survive this. It was like they designed it to torture the players. One thing I'll never forget about it: after one particularly nasty trap that stripped the players of all the gear they were carrying, the text in the book said, parenthetically, "cruel, but most entertaining for the DM". And the same could be said for the entire module.

Second place for player cruelty goes to the Judge's Guild module Inferno, based on Dante. Then again, a lot of Judge's Guild modules bordered on the impossible.

Comment Re:Spell it out the first time (Score 5, Insightful) 279

Also, the Slashdot editors need to understand that when they don't spell out these acronyms the first time they use them, the first half of the comments section is going be discussing the lack of proper acronym definition and poor editorial skills instead of, you know, the actual article content. Just sayin'.

Comment Profit vs. Cost Center (Score 2) 289

That's because companies view network security as a cost center, rather than a profit center, so they want to spend as little on it as possible. Being a network security specialist is a "reactionary" job - you do everything you can to make the network safe (on the usually meager budget you've given to do so), and then wait for ... something ... to happen, after which you'll be implicityly if not outright blamerd for it. You can also look forward to carrying a pager, possibly 24/7. In order to do the job well you'd probably need a skillset that intersects knowledge of IT, networking and programming. You could be a programmer, which is a profit center for software companies, which means you'd probably be treated and paid better, and not locked into IT, which is a dead end at many companies who see IT as something they begrudgingly have to pay for.

Still, network security sounds sexy, and it probably pays better than mainstream IT - I'm surprised they're having that much trouble finding people to do it.

I also can't help wondering if the world's black hats would pay better for someone with the skillset. After all, for them, network security is a profit center.

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