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Comment Filled my Cancelled Order (Score 4, Interesting) 127

I had managed to get two orders for a 16gb model in on the Small/Medium Business site. One was before they said they were out of stock. The second one I placed after they had declared that stock was depleted. There was a link going around that let you add it to your cart even though the product page said "out of stock."

They sent an email not long after stating that my order would be cancelled due to being placed after they ran out. Then, a few weeks ago I got two emails saying my order would be shipped within two weeks, specifying two different order numbers.

Sure enough, this past week I got two 16gb Touchpads via Fedex. So, it wasn't just the employees that wiped out the supply, but all the past-posted orders as well.

Comment Re:Esoteric mumbo (Score 1) 94

Well, we can keep our fingers crossed for the Voynich manuscript... maybe that one will prove to be juicier. Or, maybe Shakespeare's first folio... I hear there's something funky in the typefaces in that one.

Comment Re:Esoteric mumbo (Score 1) 94

But, the ritual itself is an encoding of esoteric knowledge. Or, at least, that's how all secret society ritual I've studied is. That's the point... the ritual is easy to remember and pass down to future generations. It acts as a mnemonic device for the knowledge itself. It may not be obvious or explicit in the ritual, but in theory one should be able to glean the knowledge solely from study of the ritual and its related symbolism.

The esoteric knowledge would never be committed to writing in explicit form. That is only passed from lip to ear.

Comment Get a good mouse and a good martial arts school (Score 1) 235

Two things I haven't seen mentioned yet:

I use a Cyborg RAT 7 mouse. It has a two-way adjustable thumb rest, adjustable palm rest (which I removed completely) and interchangeable pinky rests. You can also adjust its weight. I set the sensitivity very high to minimize the amount I have to move it. There's a button on the side you can hold down to drop down the dpi for precise movements, too.

Exercise has been mentioned, but I specifically suggest martial arts. Within a month of training twice weekly I could notice a difference. My posture is better in general. My muscles are more toned. I'm more aware of my body mechanics. And, it doesn't feel like I'm exercising... it feels like I'm doing something fun and happen to get exercise along the way.

I believe that practicing martial arts will strengthen your bones, tendons and ligaments in addition to muscles. Also, punching drills will teach you to keep your wrists straight very quickly. You'll be around people who understand body mechanics very well and who can give you good advice on keeping in good shape.

Shop around to find a school that suits you. Look for someplace that teaches a wide variety of techniques and will work every muscle in your body. Avoid places that give black belts to children. Avoid schools that require to you sign a long term contract. Hopefully you can find a passionate teacher with more than a few geeks in the classes. Bullshido is a good place to go to get expert opinions on the schools you check out.

The school I train at teaches a type of Kajukenbo. They cover a huge variety of practical techniques. The head teacher is an MD PhD student and most of the students are geeks... seriously, like playing D&D and going to renaissance fairs. It's the best thing I've done for my body since becoming a full time developer, and has been good for my social life to boot.


Submission + - BlackBerry servers crash, millions without BBM (

An anonymous reader writes: RIM has confirmed that it has had an outage at one of its BlackBerry servers, which has taken BBM, internet and email offline for millions of its users. The outage began at 11am Monday and is still affecting users at the time of this article's publication. The server that went down is thought to be situated in Slough and is affecting the EMEA region, which comprises Europe, the Middle East and Africa. There are also reports that the main server in Canada, where RIM is based, may also be affected.

Submission + - Where can I buy ROMs? 1

PktLoss writes: "I'm interested in building an arcade machine, following the footsteps of Cmdr Taco amongst many others. Not being all that interested in piracy, I need to find somewhere to buy games. Starroms used to be the kind of thing I was looking for, though with an incredibly short catalog. The MAME people have a few available for free (non-commercial), but this isn't going to sate my needs.

There's an entire cottage industry supporting this goal. People are ready to sell me plans, kits, buttons, joy sticks, glass marquees, and entire machines. That's fantastic, but where can I get the games? I refuse to believe that this entire industry is built on piracy."

Submission + - Crowdsourcing ancient Egyptian scrolls (

An anonymous reader writes: Dons at Oxford University were on the BBC Radio 4 'Today' programme this morning asking for help from listeners to transcribe unearthed ancient Egyptian texts and scrolls via their website. Visitors to the site are asked to match-up letters on scanned fragments of papyrus with an on-screen Greek alphabet. By doing so, they can help reveal some of the amazing documents that the ancient Egyptians last read. You too can become a papyrologist!
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Submission + - Researcher Trolls MMO, Ethical violations (

Chas writes: Approximately two years ago, a story popped up on Slashdot about a researcher, David Meyers (aka Twixt) who had supposedly spent time "studying" players in the City of Heroes MMO. At the time, there was a lot of media attention about the subject. After a short time, it dropped and nothing more was heard on it until now.

Apparently one of the players who was upset did more than simply rant on a board. The player, who had some of their own training in sociology contacted both NCSoft and Loyola University to notify them about the ethical violations of experimenting on people (especially minors) without their permission.

Since then the Mr. Meyers has scrubbed almost all reference to his paper from his CV, and a book deal was quietly killed.

Comment Re:Who wins.......... (Score 1) 246

More than any other profession, those who practice law have the ability and influence to assure their lack of competition from computer aplications.

I agree with your post for the most part, but I'd argue that computer programmers have more ability to assure their lack of competition from computer applications than lawyers. Creating software to mine data and analyze it is one thing. Creating software to create software to mine data and analyze it is another.

I don't imagine software will replace lawyers in the courtroom any time soon, if ever. But, the grunt work like document review is already being done by software instead of high-hourly-rate lawyers. I thought this was covered here, but can't find it. The NY Times covered it with the headline Armies of Expensive Lawyers, Replaced by Cheaper Software

Comment Re:Sounds like a big risk to me (Score 1) 605

Skype definitely has great brand recognition and image. They have a huge user base. These surely appeal to MS, but I can't help wondering if what they are really interested in is keeping their competitors from acquiring these things. I think they fear that should Facebook, Google or Apple acquire Skype it would deal a huge blow to old MS while they're already lagging in the mobile market.

I'm sure they'll do their best to put Skype to work for them, but I keep thinking this was more of a defensive move.

Submission + - How do I fork a FLOSS project? 3

meonkeys writes: "The worse case has come to pass, and it's time to fork. But how do I actually fork a FLOSS project? Is it as simple as changing the name in code, docs, and graphics? Can I change the license too? Should I?"

Comment Re:Are there any paranoids in the audience tonight (Score 1) 447

I'm with you on this one. For instance, I run a site that allows users to adjust the text size with handy javascript buttons. Cookies are what lets the site remember what text size a user prefers when they come back. Sure, I could use buttons that trigger a php script and store the preference in a session variable. But, then their preference is only saved for the duration of the session, and they have to reload the page just to change text size one notch... why bother? If we need cookie legislation, it should be crafted to target the problematic areas of the technology -- not the entire concept.

Submission + - NIN iPhone App Update Aprroved

vitriolum writes: Trent Reznor just announced via twitter that the NIN iPhone App update has finally been approved by Apple's censors. It should be live, and available for download within a few hours.

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