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Comment Re:Good riddance (Score 1) 292

>their support told us to update the firmware on the drive, which bricked it. They then refused to return/repair the drive because "firmware updates void your warranty."

I think my response to OCZ would have been: "I am contacting my state attorney general and petitioning that your products be banned from sales here."

Cellphones

Leaked Manual Reveals Details On Google's Nexus 5 177

Features of Google's next Nexus phone have finally been outed, along with confirmation that the phone will be built by LG, as a result of a leaked service manual draft; here are some of the details as described at TechCrunch: "The new Nexus will likely be available in 16 or 32GB variants, and will feature an LTE radio and an 8-megapixel rear camera with optical image stabilization (there’s no mention of that crazy Nikon tech, though). NFC, wireless charging, and that lovely little notification light are back, too, but don’t expect a huge boost in longevity — it’s going to pack a sealed 2,300mAh battery, up slightly from the 2100mAh cell that powered last year’s Nexus 4. That spec sheet should sound familiar to people who took notice of what happened with the Nexus 4. Just as that device was built from the foundation laid by the LG Optimus G, the Nexus 5 (or whatever it’s going to be called) seems like a mildly revamped version of LG’s G2."

Submission + - (Ex-)CIA analyst writes insider study of Counterterrorism Center

guanxi writes: (Spoiler: It turns our their jobs are even more bureaucratic as most of ours; in fact, some ask if the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) is too large to function efffectively.) CIA analyst and sociology Ph.D. candidate Bridget Nolan suggested to her superiors that she write her dissertation on her workplace. They said no; she said yes; Bridget won. She had to quit the CIA, but now her study is in the public domain. Imagine a workplace where "ordinary conversations ... involve a kind of competitive one-upsmanship, "in which intelligence officers ‘out-correct’ and ‘out-logic’ each other in the course of routine conversation to the point where any increased accuracy in what has been said no longer seems meaningful." Maybe that doesn't take much imagination.

Comment Re:2015: Terminator2 robots created to kill previo (Score 1) 149

This reminds me of SF short story, where people came up with idea of robotic doves (birds) acting as police and paralysing people who wanted to commit murder. But they had to adapt to do the job properly - to detect intent even in most ruthless killers. Soon they started to prevent people killing insects. After that, it was not possible to switch off TV set. And solution for that was to create self-evolving robotic killer hawks to catch the doves... anybody knows what was the name of the story, cannot find it now?

You're looking for Robert Sheckley's 1953 short story Watchbird , via Project Gutenberg. There was a TV adaptation in 2007's Season 1, Episode 6, Masters of Science Fiction.

Great read.

Comment Re:oops (Score 0) 154

I take it you've never used one.

In general windows use it speeds up the programs you use often quite a bit.

> and one wonders how exactly that is done while still being OS agnostic.

You write/read to sectors mapped as blocks, if you read/write to the same block more then a few times then it's worth caching. That's how block caches work.

Comment Length vs volume. (Score 2) 194

The comments on the site (as of this time) give some pretty good reasons why using slices of a circle aren't the best way to describe fractions. Most of the time it is easier for the mind to tell if two lengths are the same versus if two slices of a circle are the same. It is a much simpler calculation to determine length (line) then volume (pie piece).

Submission + - Zero Days Are Not the Bugs You're Looking For (threatpost.com)

msm1267 writes: The use of exploits against zero days, or unpatched vulnerabilities, is nothing new. Attackers have been looking for and using new bugs for as long as there has been software to exploit. What’s changed in recent years is the scale of zero day exploit use and the kind of attackers using them. It used to be mainly individual attackers and some high-end cybercrime groups. But now, zero days are being used by governments, intelligence agencies and state-sponsored attack teams. In the hands of these groups, zero days represent a major threat to the targeted organizations, most of whom can’t keep pace with the patches coming out for known bugs, let alone defend against attacks on zero days.
“There’s no red button you can push to make this go away. This is going to go on and on and on,” Andreas Lindh of I Secure n Sweden said in a talk at Virus Bulletin 2013 here Wednesday. “We need to get our priorities straight. What I’m suggesting is that we get back to basics rather than buying more tools. The tools we have work pretty well when you use them correctly. We actually have really good tools. We need to start focusing on what matters, what really matters.”

Lindh said that the old concept of defense in depth, which has been ridiculed in some corners in recent years, still holds up in most cases if organizations implement their technology correctly and don’t sit back and expect miracles. One key to succeeding more often than not against high-level attackers, he said, is to harden the software we all depend on through the use of technologies such as ASLR and DEP, which prevent many common memory corruption attacks. The number of ways that attackers can get into systems has decreased in the last few years, Lindh said.

Submission + - Voyager 1 May Be Caught Inside an Interstellar Flux Transfer Event (medium.com)

KentuckyFC writes: Last month, NASA declared that Earth's most distant probe had finally left the Solar System. But the announcement may now turn out to be premature. It was prompted by a dramatic increase in the density of plasma in the region of space the spacecraft is now in. However, there has been no change in the local magnetic field, which is what astrophysicists would expect if Voyager had entered interstellar space. Instead, space scientists think the probe may be caught inside a magnetic portal known as an interstellar flux transfer event. This occurs when the magnetic fields from two different objects briefly become connected through a tube-like magnetic structure. This process happens between the Earth and Sun’s magnetic field about every eight minutes, so similar events are expected between the Sun's field and the interstellar field. This magnetic tube would allow particles in from outside the Solar System, increasing the density of plasma, while maintaining the same magnetic field. If so, Voyager 1 hasn't yet left the Solar System after all.

Comment Re:Constructive Criticism (Score 1) 1191

I've posted most of this on the "blog" site where it's likely to be read instead of buried in a 1000-post thread, but this seems the right place to follow up with your well-articulated, broad-based global objections (with which I agree 110%), and outline the nits.

Upon re-reading this list, it's depressing just how many things about the 3.0 redesign that I'm already thinking of blocking/hacking out client-side via greasemonkey or local CSS overrides. The depressing part isn't that I'm willing to do it; I love the site enough to go through the trouble. The depressing part is that the only reaction I can have to all this effort is to start thinking about how I can disable it.

1) Images: Meh, I can take 'em or leave 'em. I can understand users' frustration, but they're trivial to block client-side.

2) Whitespace:

Narrow the spacing between lines.

It's like reading in doublespaced/triplespaced form.

3) Whitespace. I think people have
told you the fixed-width column
was too narrow. But just in case,
here's another reminder.

4) Content and presentation of article summaries:
(From the click-to-expand department)

All that whitespace, and you can't even display the full article summary? Because some web designer said all summaries had to fit within a maximum number of vertical pixels before requiring a mouse click? And you(...rest of this objection after the jump ... *click*)
believed him? Really? :)

5) Comments. User numbers (UIDs) need to be displayed. They're a useful indicator age of account and therefore useful for helping mentally filter trolls/shills. (Umm, sorry, noobs, but if your UID indicates an account created in the past day or so, it takes me a while to accept you as a regular ;)

6) Comments. Timestamps need to be timestamps. Sometimes it's critical to know who was the first to make a joke or link to a reference. "A few minutes ago" or "An hour ago" isn't enough. Going further out, "Two years ago" is meaningless if you're talking about things like whether someone called a corporate takeover or tech development before or after the news actually came out. To illustrate the problem by way of example, "1 year ago" could mean at any time during 2012, 2013, or 2014, for any time period from 8 months ago to 18 months from now, and is no longer useful for gauging whether someone successfully predicted the eventual fate of Blackbrry. Slashdot is an easily-googlable source of record, and it's *vital* to know on what day it reported on something.

P.S. Just because you read it on a blog doesn't mean it's true. http://graysky.org/2013/09/blog-timestamp/ And even this author notes that for some publishing, the timing is highly relevant. If you want to be the blog of record, your content is such content.

7) Comments. Needs filtering or a one-click-load-all-comments button.

D1, its bugs notwithstanding, could do this with three middle clicks into new tabs of about 100 comments per tab.

D2 could do this with two drags over the slider and a load-all-comments. (or a load-500-comments and then a load-all-comments).

D3 doesn't seem to be able to do this as far as I can tell.

8) Black-on-grey is less readable than black-on-white.

Sorry, OS X people, this is fail. I can tolerate this only because I can manually override it client-side. It's horrible and makes the site unreadable, but, well, it's something even an idiot like me can forcibly override client-side in 5 minutes. It's hardly the worst defect of the redesign.

9) Floating DIVs. Really? *REALLY?!?!* Some of us use something other than mice or greasy fingers on touchscreens to scroll.

10) Auto-refresh. There's a preference to disable this, right? Right?

11) Will D1 be preserved? I felt that D2 was something I could adapt to, and on occasion, I prefer its presentation to that of D1. This is unusable, and I will leave if it goes through as presented.

12) Like most UX redesigns, I know that the overwhelming flood of negative feedback will be ignored. We're just the users. We don't know a thing about design, and it's the designer's attitude that matters, not whether it's usable or not.

This means I'm likely to be leaving for other places soon. I'm not sure where I'll go yet, but I'll find a community somewhere. Fark's fun but nontechnical. Digg's dead, and good riddance. Reddit requires too many mouse clicks to do anything. HN is clean, elegant, technical, informative and so bone-dry sterile that I can only go there once a day.

Thank you, /., for 15 years of providing a place for funsightformative coments. There was truly no place like this. I respect that the Dice sale was as good an exit as you could have made under the circumstances (I thought SlashBI might have actually gotten some traction given some time), but failing to prevent their UX people from killing Slashdot was a pretty ignoble end to what was once a proud website.

Good luck in your future endeavors.

Signing off, Tackhead (#54550)
5-digit-club, with 43 achievements, 2^9 +5 comments, 2^8 consecutive daily reads, embarassingly low 2^2 metamod score; I suppose I'd have metamoderated more often if the UI for that hadn't been broken in the upgrade to Slashdot 2.0, (I still don't know if +/- means that the comment was good/bad, or if the moderation done to the comment was fair/unfair, and yes, that distinction is important in the case of "+1 Funny" vs "-1 Flamebait" because the mod missed the joke) and maybe it's fitting that Diana Moon Glampers: UX Designer was my last +5.

(P.S.: Does anyone know how I can tell how many comments I've posted in total? I'd like to know before I go.)

Comment Re:You've broken comments; BADLY (Score 1) 69

So what's the plan going forward? I've had a couple of hours to cool down and formulate my objections more objectively.

1) Images: Meh, I can take 'em or leave 'em. I can understand users' frustration, but they're trivial to block client-side.

2) Whitespace:

Narrow the spacing between lines.

It's like reading in doublespaced/triplespaced form.

3) Whitespace. I think people have
told you the fixed-width column
was too narrow. But just in case,
here's another reminder.

4) Content and presentation of article summaries:
(From the click-to-expand department)

All that whitespace, and you can't even display the full article summary? Because some web designer said all summaries had to fit within a maximum number of vertical pixels before requiring a mouse click? And you(...rest of this objection after the jump ... *click*)
believed him? Really? :)

5) Comments. User numbers (UIDs) need to be displayed. They're a useful indicator age of account and therefore useful for helping mentally filter trolls/shills. (Umm, sorry, noobs, but if your UID indicates an account created in the past day or so, it takes me a while to accept you as a regular ;)

6) Comments. Timestamps need to be timestamps. Sometimes it's critical to know who was the first to make a joke or link to a reference. "A few minutes ago" or "An hour ago" isn't enough. Going further out, "Two years ago" is meaningless if you're talking about things like whether someone called a corporate takeover or tech development before or after the news actually came out. To illustrate the problem by way of example, "1 year ago" could mean at any time during 2012, 2013, or 2014, for any time period from 8 months ago to 18 months from now, and is no longer useful for gauging whether someone successfully predicted the eventual fate of Blackbrry. Slashdot is an easily-googlable source of record, and it's *vital* to know on what day it reported on something.

P.S. Just because you read it on a blog doesn't mean it's true. http://graysky.org/2013/09/blog-timestamp/ And even this author notes that for some publishing, the timing is highly relevant. If you want to be the blog of record, your content is such content.

7) Comments. Needs filtering or a one-click-load-all-comments button.

D1, its bugs notwithstanding, could do this with three middle clicks into new tabs of about 100 comments per tab.

D2 could do this with two drags over the slider and a load-all-comments. (or a load-500-comments and then a load-all-comments).

D3 doesn't seem to be able to do this as far as I can tell.

8) Black-on-grey is less readable than black-on-white.

Sorry, OS X people, this is fail. I can tolerate this only because I can manually override it client-side. It's horrible and makes the site unreadable, but, well, it's something even an idiot like me can forcibly override client-side in 5 minutes. It's hardly the worst defect of the redesign.

9) Floating DIVs. Really? *REALLY?!?!* Some of us use something other than mice or greasy fingers on touchscreens to scroll.

10) Auto-refresh. There's a preference to disable this, right? Right?

11) Will D1 be preserved? I felt that D2 was something I could adapt to, and on occasion, I prefer its presentation to that of D1. This is unusable, and I will leave if it goes through as presented.

12) Like most UX redesigns, I know that the overwhelming flood of negative feedback will be ignored. We're just the users. We don't know a thing about design, and it's the designer's attitude that matters, not whether it's usable or not.

This means I'm likely to be leaving for other places soon. I'm not sure where I'll go yet, but I'll find a community somewhere. Fark's fun but nontechnical. Digg's dead, and good riddance. Reddit requires too many mouse clicks to do anything. HN is clean, elegant, technical, informative and so bone-dry sterile that I can only go there once a day.

Thank you for 15 years of providing a place for funsightformative coments. There was truly no place like this. I respect that the Dice sale was as good an exit as you could have made under the circumstances (I thought SlashBI might have actually gotten some traction given some time), but failing to prevent their UX people from killing Slashdot was a pretty ignoble end to what was once a proud website. Good luck in your future endeavors, but if there's no D1/D2 preservation, I'm afraid I won't be riding this train to wherever it's going.

Signing off,
5-digit-club, with 43 achievements, 2^9 +5 comments, 2^8 consecutive daily reads, embarassingly low 2^2 metamod score; I suppose I'd have metamoderated more often if the UI for that hadn't been broken in the upgrade to Slashdot 2.0, (I still don't know if +/- means that the comment was good/bad, or if the moderation done to the comment was fair/unfair, and yes, that distinction is important in the case of "+1 Funny" vs "-1 Flamebait" because the mod missed the joke) and maybe it's fitting that Diana Moon Glampers: UX Designer was my last +5.

(P.S.: Does anyone know how I can tell how many comments I've posted in total? I'd like to know before I go.)

Comment Re:competition (Score 1) 230

If you've ever used GoDaddy's economy webhosting you'll see the storage backend of the VM or shared host you get is terribly over committed. Actual bandwidth to machine seems fine, so if your site/web app fits in memory and doesn't do too much seeking around on the disk, you'll be ok.

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