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Hardware Hacking

Is DIY Brainhacking Safe? 183

An anonymous reader writes "My colleague at IEEE Spectrum, Eliza Strickland, looked at the home transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) movement. People looking to boost creativity, or cure depression, are attaching electrodes to their heads using either DIT equipment or rigs from vendors like Foc.us. Advocates believe experimenting with the tech is safe, but a neuroscientist worries about removing the tech from lab safeguards..."

Comment Re:I was wondering about that... (Score 1) 377

He's right, you can still get sound cards, though given the prevalence of the aforementioned embedded Realtek audio (that is, shit) its uncommon to use them. I'm not really sure what the exact use case for them is, since windows threw the hardware acellerated audio baby out with the Vista bathwater, the hardware is just a shitty DAC, a puny amp and some 3.5mm jacks. The rest is at the mercy of whatever crap drivers the vendor bothers to release.

Killing hardware accelerated audio was just fucking stupid. Sure, my fancy quad core can process that audio signal. But why the hell should it? As if there aren't other things it could be doing besides being a glorified DSP. It can process all those vertices too, but you don't hear anyone rushing off to kill hardware accelerated graphics for ... reasons.

Comment Re:Windows 8 (Score 1) 742

Hmm wonder is any ex-Microsoft execs work for Dice.

Nah, not especially likely. The Dice Beta crap is all pretty standard textbook plays. The users don't know what they want, so we'll give them something they don't yet know they want. And when they complain that it "sucks" or is "too different" we'll tell them, "Give it time, you're too stupid to know what you want. You'll get used to the new status quo soon enough."

Same for Unity, Gnome 3, and any other software project that is widely derided by users as crap, but the devs keep plodding on because the users are stupid to know how much they really want whatever crap they're peddling.

Comment Re:ie bundling was just a small part (Score 1) 742

I think that the cookie popup has something to do with an EU disclosure rule. They basically have say "We're using cookies for X, Y, and Z. If you don't like it, well, go someplace else."

That's why there's always an Agree button, but nothing else. I've been seeing those pop ups quite a bit, and we know it certainly wasn't the US government making anyone do anything that might possibly get in the way of profit or have even the slightest veneer of consumer protection, so I'm assuming it's the EU requiring these notices.

Honestly, they're pretty stupid. The only cookies that matter are the tracking ones, and I've yet to see a single one of those cookie Opt-In things disclose the laundry list of trackers stuffed in the page. For instance, Ghostery is blocking 14 items on slashdot. 14. 70% advertisement, the rest "beacons', "analytics' and ironically enough, 'privacy'.

Comment Re:Surface Pro and Ubuntu for Android (Score 1) 389

I wonder what to make of the fact that none of the devices/software you mentioned are managing to make any meaningful headway into the market? It's pretty easy to write Surface Pro off as simply being too expensive, and anything with GNU in the title is a non-starter in the first place. I suppose the Ubuntu thing has a chance, given Valve's endorsement of the distro, but many in the traditional Linux community are abandoning Ubuntu due to things like the sponsored search bar kerfuffle and Unity.

I think I agree about the regulatory barriers, but I'm not convinced that the pat libertarian answer of "all regulation is bad" is much of a solution at all.

Comment Re:Multiple Desktops on a Single screen. (Score 1) 389

I'm sure I could look it up, but how exactly did they improve the multi-monitor support? I know at least for my usage with a dual-monitor setup I've never noticed any particular problems, even when using the TV as a third monitor that periodically comes and goes everything has been hunky-dory.

Comment Re:mod options (Score 1) 389

I'd like to see usage statistics for the Firehose, or whatever they call it now. I know the only times I've used it were a) when they introduced it, and b) during the Beta protests to vote up the anti-Beta stories. I'm rather afraid that we have a situation akin to the US primary elections where a small subset of the population choosing what the rest of us are going to read, where the rest of the population doesn't like the fact that this small group is doing so, but can't be bothered to participate in the process. Ah, our own little microcosm of the United States. All we need now is the Slashdot Army and world domination, here we come!

Comment Re:I'm confused (Score 2) 389

Nah, they're going to double down on the cloud thing. Expect more and more core OS functionality to drift away into the fluffy little cloud, with an optional, but expensive option to "run your own cloud" for those recalcitrant privacy advocates who don't want practically all their information stored "securely" in some huge corporate data center in Montana. Win 8 already has their stupid little Microsoft Account which you can use to "... get apps from the Windows Store, back up all your important data and files using free cloud storage, and keep all your favorite stuff—devices, photos, friends, games, settings, music, and so on—up to date and in sync." So Cloud (implied), Cloud (explicit), Cloud (implied). Don't worry though, just like a real cloud your files and information are just so many water droplets in a swirling mass, so it isn't likely you will be personally targeted! The crackers will just take ALL of it! No worries!

Personally, I can't wait for Cloud printing, where your document goes out to the internet, then back to your printer, unless your internet access is out for some reason, then you're hosed. Rah rah cloud!!

Comment Re:Needs grow (Score 1) 389

someone whose needs grow past what an iPad can do has to spend hundreds on a whole new computer.

Lol, you say that like it's a bad thing, at least from the industries prospective. Once most of the big PC players have their own crap Chinese Android tablet offerings we'll start seeing adverts similar to "Out grown your tablet? We can help! Buy our workstation PCs and get more done with less grease smears and cursing at Google/Apple for idiotic media consumption centered design decisions!"

I'm sure we'll see some kind of resurgence in PC sales when it finally becomes apparent to most people that their little tablet toys are woefully unsuited for, you know, getting stuff done, other than Angry Flappy Birds or Youtube or whatever. I love my tablet for quick surfing on the couch, playing Minecraft PE with the kids, or carrying it around to make myself look cool. But write code? Write emails longer than a paragraph or so? Edit an image? Forget about it, I'm sick of having an app for everything that used to be a website and having websites squished into a trite little mobile package which removes or makes difficult 60%-70% of any useful functionality of the site. I realize we can't simply pass tablets, and mobile devices et al as simple fads, but we certainly don't need to pretend that they're computing or usability panaceas that will finally bring computing to the unwashed masses. At least until some enterprising soul releases a non-media-consumption tablet/OS.

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