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Comment Re:Apple getting desperate? (Score 1) 574

You have got to be freaking kidding me! Consider the following:

The court rules that Mr. X is not guilty on 666 counts of torture, rape and murder, simply because he's been torturing, raping and murdering for so long.

I may be exaggerating a bit, but the above seems to be analogous to your idea of "this is nothing new, so just ignore it".


Australia To Fight iPod Use By Pedestrians 450

Kilrah_il writes "In recent years the number of people killed on roads in New South Wales, Australia has dropped, but strangely enough, the number of pedestrians killed has risen. Some think it's because of the use of iPods and other music players making people not attentive to road dangers (the so-called 'iPod Zombie Trance'). Based on this (unproven) assumption, the Pedestrian Council has started a campaign in an effort to educate the people, but apparently it isn't enough. Now, some are pushing for the government to enact laws to help eradicate the problem. 'The government is quite happy to legislate that people can lose two demerit points for having music up too loud in their cars, but is apparently unconcerned that listening devices now appear to have become lethal pieces of entertainment,' [Harold Scruby of the Pedestrian Council of Australia] said. 'They should legislate appropriate penalties for people acting so carelessly towards their own welfare and that of others. ... Manufacturers should be made to [warn] consumers of the risks they run.'"

Comment Re:I don't believe that (Score 2, Informative) 256

At the risk of getting a few "whoosh" comments, let me explain this to you (and anyone else that doesn't know about websockets): your browser requests a websocket from the server, which responds with an address it can connect to. Once connected to this address, your browser and the remote server can exchange anything over a regular full-duplex TCP channel, effectively bypassing all the HTTP limitations. Look here for more information.

Comment Other distros should follow (Score 1) 984

Correct basis

Use base-10 for:

  • network bandwidth (for example, 6 Mbit/s or 50 kB/s)
  • disk sizes (for example, 500 GB hard drive or 4.7 GB DVD)

Use base-2 for:

  • RAM sizes (for example, 2 GiB RAM)

For file sizes there are two possibilities:

  1. Show both, base-10 and base-2 (in this order). An example is the Linux kernel: "2930277168 512-byte hardware sectors: (1.50 TB/1.36 TiB)"
  2. Only show base-10, or give the user the opportunity to decide between base-10 and base-2 (the default must be base-10).


The application can keep their previous behavior for backwards compatibility if the following points apply. The application may add an option to display the sizes in base-10, too.

  • is a command-line tool
  • is often parsed by machine (for example, the output is used in scripts)
  • only the prefix is displayed and not the unit (for example, M instead of MB)

Some applications which fall under this rule are:

  • df
  • du
  • ls

This basically means that they won't actually be changing anything important (like the semantics of the stat() system call). This only means that lots of graphical applications will eventually display data sizes correctly, as defined by the displayed SI prefix. Though it may be confusing to users of multiple operating systems at first, Ubuntu is doing the right thing. It'll stop being confusing when other distros follow their lead.
If you know what the difference between the KB and KiB prefixes, then it doesn't matter. If you don't know, it doesn't matter either. Right?

Comment I want one... (Score 1) 198

This makes me want a Nokia N900 even more. I'm desperate for one. Unfortunately, these things cost a shitload of money (even on ebay, I can't find one cheaper than about $520). This thing has WIFI, which is all I really need, but if I decide to get one with a plan, I'll be robbed blind because there's no way to get one without an online plan that costs $10/month. Mobile phone service providers need to stop robbing us.

Comment Revolting (Score 5, Interesting) 169

Frankly, I find this whole business revolting. Several large countries are working on a framework for lawmaking, which would eventually turn into laws all citizens aren't supposed to break.
The problem with this (and laws in general) is that no single citizen has any idea how not to break the law anymore. Furthermore, I was under the impression that lawmaking within democracies is supposed to be a process where every voting citizen has a say in, directly or indirectly.These ACTA negotiations are essentially about making laws noone but the big shots really want to be enforced.

To summarize: I believe these negotiations to be utterly and completely undemocratic, unethical and criminal.

Comment Infinite loop (Score 1) 135

When I mailed all the users again from my Hotmail account, the results were strange -- most of the users' accounts sent back no auto-reply at all, not even a reply that got routed to my junk folder. (Why would Hotmail accounts not send an auto-reply in response to a message from a Hotmail user?

Perhaps to avoid an infinite loop of auto-replying between two compromised hotmail accounts?

Comment Re:please tell us your real agenda. (Score 1) 131

If it relied on the project to begin with, that means it already had the features you needed most, in which case progress (although pleasant) is unnecessary.

Yes, because requirements never change over time; runtime environments never change over time; business needs never change over time; the software that you installed 20 years ago should be good enough for you today, by god - because why would you install it at all if it didn't have the features you needed most?

FOSS projects say, "If any of that stuff changes, here's the source, go fix it yourself as technology, runtimes, and requirements change." This freedom is GREAT for technology-literate people. For a small plumbing business that wants to build a customer database and a web site, it makes no sense to hire a team of developers. And so they do the sensible and cost-effective thing: purchase commercial solutions, where somebody who has expertise in development builds and supports the software so they can focus on their area of expertise: Plumbing.

Whether it's a closed-source commercial product you're buying a copy of, or a FOSS project you're buying "support and consultation" for, the fact remains that "finish it yourself if you want" is not a viable option for a large cross-section of businesses, and so is not really a selling point in the eyes of those businesses. Technologists ignore or oversimplify this point frequently here on slashdot, and the blithe assumption that "anybody with half a brain can pick up the source code for MySQL and hammer out the DB features they need," always amuses.

I agree with you. And I didn't mean to suggest to just do the developing yourself. However, when — as a business or otherwise — you rely on an open source project, you should be aware that since you're not exactly a client (or boss) of the people doing the developing, you really shouldn't expect any kind of support. Features you'd like to see may or may not be implemented, but that's all up to whoever is spending time developing said project. You basically have three choices: see if you can get the development team of that project to implement the features you need (knowing full well that it may never happen), do it yourself if you have the ability or just accept the fact that you have no influence over where the project is headed.

So what I'm saying is: I definitely understand why businesses (or individuals) who rely heavily on a piece of software would decide to go with a commercial product, where you know you'll get support if you need it, and where your requests are seen as more than mere suggestions.

Comment Re:please tell us your real agenda. (Score 1) 131

Yes the wheels DO turn a little slower in larger companies, but it's better then the wheels not turning at all as happens when the OSS project your business was relying on goes dark because the main dev lost interest.

If your business is relying on an OSS project and it gets in a pickle because the project goes dead, then I don't understand. If it relied on the project to begin with, that means it already had the features you needed most, in which case progress (although pleasant) is unnecessary. Besides, you would have the option of forking the project and finishing it yourself! Unlike when you gotta go out and buy a "new" version of a game because some big company decided its customers didn't need to play that game online anymore...

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