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Comment The "color" images look gray (Score 2) 97

Lame indeed. I just took a look at Messenger's supposed First Color Image of Mercury from Orbit. I thought I'd gone color blind. It looked so gray. Trying to reproduce the subtle shades in a color printer would be a terrible waste of ink or toner, as you'd be forced to go Cyan-Magenta-Yellow (CMY) to print out something not quite Black (K) or gray.

The mission may yet turn up some astounding scientific discovery, but Mercury isn't a very photogenic planet, as far as celestial bodies go.

Comment Re:That's Not Ironic (Score 1) 288

That's why I said "expect". However, I'd still expect a dentist to have good teeth, even in a two- or one- dentist town. I expect a dentist to know all the tricks of having good teeth, like flossing, brushing after every meal, etc. If he sees a nasty cavity that could lead to bad teeth, I expect him to go and visit (even to the point of going out of town) another dentist who's just as good or a just a wee bit worse than him. Unless he's a self-schooled dentist who doesn't belong to any medical association, you'd expect him to have some contacts. Barbers probably are different since it's not the sort of profession where you have to pass an exam to get licensed, "high-end" hair "stylists" excepted.

Similarly I'd "expect" the MySql site to be free from, at the very least, exploitable security holes in their "star" product, even if that can never be true in practice. Image counts for a lot.

Comment Re:That's Not Ironic (Score 1) 288

Unlike the reserved words of a computer program, words in a natural language have a wide latitude of uses, from the strict to the colloquial. Here, I see the "irony" in how a site designed to promote some type of "SQL" turns out to suffer from an SQL flaw, in effect negating the product's virtues in the eyes of those who like to skim through IT news headlines. It's similar to the way you expect a dentist to have good teeth.

Ironic is when one's words say one thing and one's actions another that contradict it.

I think you're thinking of another word: hypocrisy, e.g., a politician who claims to stand for morality but goes out with a hooker.

Comment Re:No, this isn't going to become mainstream (Score 1) 193

That's essentially illegal in most of the world. There's all sorts of bureaucratic stuff you have to go through if you want to drive on public roads. Not to mention the hassle of getting the thing licensed and probably emission tested as well.

Sadly, in most of the (3rd) world, most manufacturers only pay lip service (or a small bribe) to get the environmental license or whatnot they need to get their product out into the street.

Comment Re:No, this isn't going to become mainstream (Score 1) 193

You can also find books and websites about how to build your own car, but hardly anybody does that, statistically speaking.

Well, there's a big price difference between a car and a Nook, so I won't be surprised that fewer people are into car building vs. Nook modding. In the First World, that is.

In the developing world, all sorts of "car-like" vehicles get "built" out of used car parts imported or sneaked in through a country's ports. A good example would be the "jeepney" of the Philippines or the songthaew of Thailand. There are also variants of three-wheeled vehicles (tricycles) that adapt the motorcycle into the equivalent of a taxicab or, incredible as that might seem to Westerners, a mini-bus!

In those countries, assembling a vehicle might just be a bit more expensive than buying then modding an eBook reader but way more profitable since the product can be used for business and not just to stoke the hardware hacker's ego.

Comment What, ma, no pants? (Score 1) 63

TFA shows only a model dressed in, well, a dress that looks little different from a bed sheet draped on by an actress in a PG-rated love scene. I mean, this is the sort of fashion that you can do with a little skill but lots of chutzpah. I'm sure a teen-aged girl with plenty of time but short on her mommy money can do a much, much better job.

I'd be more impressed if the app can do pants and a proper shirt that, even if it won't make the pages of GQ, I at least won't be ashamed to wear to work.

Comment Re:Ubuntu (Score 1) 84

I doubt Ubuntu would be competing with Debian on the same things since Ubuntu's focus is user-friendliness with projects like the Unity desktop interface while Debian's focus is on building a stable system on more different architectures than any other free software distribution (other than NetBSD).

Comment Re:Can't issue a copyright claim if not the owner (Score 1) 116

To be pedantic, not necessarily. IANAL but there's a good chance that the contributor of a kernel patch submitted it as part of his/her job. So there's a slim chance that the (GPL'ed) copyright belongs to the Company not the contributor as a person. There's also the matter of copyright assignment, but I've read that Linus (or the Linux Foundation) isn't as strict about that, as, say the GNU Project.

Comment Ubuntu (Score 1) 84

Not trying to start a troll war but is there any particular reason why Ubuntu was omitted. There seems to be far too many slots open (not that it's a bad thing), why can't they have squeezed in one more?

Daniel Holbach's blog post doesn't say much. To be sure, all my favorite apps (!store) are represented, including Blender, Abiword, Scribus, GnuCash, and VLC (as Videolan). Aside from Fedora, other distros represented include Debian, OpenSuSa, Gentoo, FreeBSD, and NetBSD (but not OpenBSD unless my eyes have deceived me).

Comment Re:But is it really good? (Score 1) 123

Besides the fact that few movies are still actually being made in Hollywood (California), the recorded entertainment market (to group all things that can be squished into optical media, and subsequently streamed, broadcast or file-shared) has expanded greatly since the turn of the millenium. So now you can get hit movies whose only or main connection to the large US entertainment companies is the distribution rights. And, hey, there are also large markets in other territories like India and Pacific Asia (Japan, Korea, etc), where actors, writers, and directors live, get rich, famous, laid, and die without having once had a successful US production.

Comment But is it really good? (Score 3, Interesting) 123

surprisingly well-made

Sounds like a synonym for mediocre but hey it's free. I have yet to watch TFE (the fine episode) because my torrent download rate is surprisingly slow. But reading through the comments at the VODO download page, assuming they aren't anonymous astroturfers, I get the feeling that it's actually good enough for broadcast TV. They'd probably be right if by such quality you mean either Paranormal Activity or the Blair Witch Project, a threshold you can easily reach with a well-written script, a good director and a dedicated cast.

Sadly the better free beer movies I've watched appear to be fan-made movies (or movies produced without explicit permission from materials copyrighted by other people), e.g. The Hunt for Gollum.

Comment Mutopia (Score 1) 106

Also try the Mutopia Project, which has user-contributed sheet music in Lilypond format. Ready-to-print PDF output, as well as computer-generated MIDI format previews of the music, are also available on the site. (The last time I tried to mirror its music files resulted in a 1.4 GB file dump. It had some Bach, although I'm not sure if the Goldberg Variations was among them.)

Comment Re:Innovate! (Score 1) 106

All this while open source projects would be the perfect place to really shine with innovation and with something new. Why just copy, why not create something new?

First of all, I don't think few things are really new in terms of technological development. Most technology, if not all, is built upon a layer of old technology. The wheel was probably an evolution of the rolling log, a technology that nature invented. Famous computing technology examples: the Macintosh, which "innovated" on top of technologies developed at Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center, and Windows, which ... (you get the point).

But if by "new", you mean fairly new, then it's easy to trace the apparent lack of innovation to the shortage or more often absence of designers in open source projects. (This is something Canonical has been trying to address with projects like Unity with I'm not sure what level of success.) Designers are a necessity when dealing with graphical programs which are spatial, as against the more sequential nature of programming.

You can find lots of innovation on the console, which includes software like emacs (an innovation against the line editors of the time), the object-oriented scripting language Python, and even Unix itself. These are "old" examples of innovation, which I mention only because they are pretty well known.

On top of that the shooter games are all based on ID's engines that are many years old.

Not all open-source games are based on the ID engine. Here's one that isn't.

Comment IGP's are sufficient for most games (Score 1) 172

IGP's are sufficient for most games. Yes, you read that right. IGP's with good drivers are sufficient for playing the games that most people play. These include Flash games (Farmville) and the "demo" games that come with a typical OS installation (Solitaire).

I hate how supposed "gamers" dominate any discussion that remotely has anything to do with computer graphics. Not everybody wants to play Crysis (and I don't even know what that is, without a quick peek at Wikipedia).

Comment Most boring planet? (Score 2) 108

No, not really. All of the planets are interesting in their own right, including the one under your feet. However, I'd nominate Mercury as the most boring of the bunch. It has no thick atmosphere to hide what's underneath (Venus), isn't Earth-like enough to be humanity's putative second home (Mars), a mini-solar system (Jupiter, Saturn and the other gas giants), nor a former double planet (Pluto and Charon).

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There is no likelihood man can ever tap the power of the atom. -- Robert Millikan, Nobel Prize in Physics, 1923