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Comment not enough data for such conclusions (Score 1) 265

I doubt very much that there is enough terrorism-related data to have much confidence in this analysis. You need quantities lijke the number of words in a book to extract with any confidence Zipfs law or most other power laws. Even then, there are enough deviations from the straight line (on logscale, of course) to make the drawing of conclusions a very interesting job indeed.

Paai

Comment Re:"Anthill Inside" (Score 1) 106

To begin with, a sucessor/collaborator for Pratchett would have to be sixtyish, like Pratchett himself (and yours truly). That is because he draws so heavily from his experiences as an very intelligent observer of the second half of the 20th century, including the fifties and sixties. I *know* that my 25 and 28 years old daughters are Pratchett adepts, and I always wonder in how far they get the allusions, and if not, why they can enjoy the books so much.

You mentioned Good Omens, which certainly is one of the best (and which incidentally depends very much on biblical knowledge), but ithat book certainly is not the result of a slick writer taking over from a dead or retiring author.

Microsoft

Submission + - Microsoft problems hit dutch police force (webwereld.nl)

paai writes: The dutch police departments north of the great rivers, which covers somewhat more than half of the country have been struggling for weeks with really serious network problems. The cause has been found in a malfunction during the installation of a Microsoft service pack. The police says that it will be weeks before the network will be functioning again. See http://webwereld.nl/nieuws/65040/politie--netwerkstoring-duurt-nog-weken.html (dutch)
This is bad enough in itself, as it effectively cuts out half of the connections, so that officers will have to do their administration on their home computers, or even by hand. It also means that statistical processing of incidents is impossible.
What worries me even more is that police data typically contain sensitive information that you would not want to fall in wrong hands and we all know the track record of Microsoft when it comes to security.

Google

Building Left 4 Dead Maps With Google Sketchup 44

notthatwillsmith writes "If you're a fan of Left 4 Dead and you've ever wanted to build a zombie-filled map of your hometown, office or grocery store, Maximum PC just posted a how-to that shows you how to convert photos of real-world locations into ready-to-play L4D 1 or 2 maps. It's everything you need to know in order to kill zombies with your friends — in the comfort of your own backyard."

Comment wlan stopped working (Score 0) 1231

I upgraded from 9.04 to 9.10 on two desktop machines, a laptop and a netbook.

* On the laptop, the wlan (rt61-based) stopped working. After searching the bug database and Google, this appeared a known issue, but the laptop is unuseable for work untill I buy myself an USB dongle. I really was upset about this.

* On one dektop several graphic features of the KDE destop stopped working, such as the revolving cube.

* There are unresolved issues with the fonts of thunderbird. This seems to be related to the use of KDE over an NX connection.

There are some bugs that I hoped/expected to be solved after the upgrade, but still are not working satisfactorily:

* syncing Evolution with a Palm Treo is not yet without problems, like the duplication of entries and having to reconfigure bluetooth after every sync.

* kpilot still a mess, Actually I consider it a total loss that cannot be salvaged any more.

* scrolling of firefox still too slow. This is a problem over a NX connection.

Comment priority number one: pda support (Score 0) 757

I would expect one of the most important features for a good desktop, the ability to use all functions of the PDA from the desktop, before all, effortless syncing of calendar, contacts and memos.

As far as I know, there is only a single line of PDAs that more or less can sync with Linux: the PALM based ones. Even then, there are all kinds of problems. Kpilot did work after a fashion with KDE3, but it is hopelessly broken with KDE4 because of the Akonadi disaster. Evolution does sync, even with bluetooth, but there still are some bugs. Jpilot works fine, but only over a serial link, and it is a stand-alone application.

If you don't have a Palm (and they are really old fashioned nowadays), the situation is worse. I know of no modern PDA, that is guaranteed to sync with the Linux desktop. Sometimes, partial succes is reported, but even then we are not talking out-of-the-box solutions. There is always a fair amount fiddling with libraries, (re)compiling, much burning of incense and never 100% functionality.

Somebody tell that to marc shuttleworth...

Hans Paijmans
 

Comment Deutsches Museum at Munich (Score 0) 435

I don't know if your trip extends to Europe, but if it does, the Deutches Museum at Munich is probably the best museum in its kind that I have seen (and yes, I have seen the Smithsonian too).

Imagine a leading industrial nation that lost two wars, but still is one of the richest countries of the world. Imagine the urge that possesses such a nation to show the world that it still counts as a leading nation in this and other fields. Imagine (almost) unlimited funds. Now you have the Deutsches Museum.

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