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Comment Re:Why not just use Pinyin? (Score 1) 508

It can be tougher to learn, but like any other language it wholly depends on your exposure to it. I'd say the biggest problem Latin-based speakers will have at first is learning the differences between intiial, medial, and final forms of each glyph. Then, learning the differences between those within the Arabic-like languages -- Farsi, Dari, etc. To be able to accomplish basic recognition, I would say no more than 3 months should be plenty. But that's true of most languages -- getting basic comprehension typically takes a short time, but mastery can often be a lifetime endeavor.

Comment Re:Not that surprising. (Score 1) 301

Geez, that UET is particularly nasty in its side-effects.

We have emissions to thank for a lot of the computerization of cars. Everything you described, as you know, comes down to the computer retarding the engine timing. This is done solely to keep the vehicle from spewing emissions, or at least the computer is programmed to *think* that's what the car is about to do and it reacts accordingly. I notice you'll get similar behavior with a bad mass airflow sensor, sometimes inefficient cat but that ties into O2, etc.

I'm with you -- lose all the sensors, let's go back to pure mechanical.

Comment Re:Not that surprising. (Score 1) 301

While it is true that you cannot just drop in a used BCM plug-n-play style, (with the same feature/option codes) you can typically use a 30-minute procedure to reset the ignition and other systems. The sucky thing is the procedure can vary depending on the age of the BCM, but it's still workable.

That will at least get a matching-option-code BCM to work in a different vehicle, except the radio. As far as I know, GM is the only party able to unlock a locked radio. Part of me wonders if, with reverse engineering, it would be possible to crash the BCM CPU and force the radio back to unlocked.

What is unclear to me is, what does the GM tool actually do? Everything technical I've read about Passkey implies that the key is write-once, but the GM dealers seem to have a way to clear that key. If it truly *can* be erased electronically, couldn't a strong EM signal at least corrupt, if not wipe, the BCM PROMs?

Comment Re:Not that surprising. (Score 4, Informative) 301

Three words -- Body Control Module. I don't know a damned thing about Jaguars, but with GM vehicles in general they all have a Body Control Module installed. Anything that isn't directly related to the powertrain is controlled by the BCM (incidentally, the powertrain is controlled by the Powertrain Control Module). In many GM vehicles, the BCM can be communicated with via the radio; this is to set certain user options like how long the headlamps will remain illuminated after exiting the vehicle. In the event that something goes wrong with the BCM, the radio will lock because it gets put into an anti-theft state, and typically the car will not start. All because a single capacitor on a shitty little Motorola board got cooked, for example.

Then, even if you get a used BCM with the same option codes as the one you're replacing, the radio will remain in an anti-theft state because the thinking of the designers (I guess) was that people would start swapping BCMs just to steal radios -- dumb.

GM, of course, has a tool to reprogram BCMs, but even they say there's a 50/50 shot their programming will render the BCM unusable. From my limited research of the boards they use, it seems there is little if any CRC done in any shape or form, so it sounds like the board will happily write bad or invalid data to the PROM.

Again, I don't know how a Jaguar design works, but there are vehicles where the radio does indeed affect other parts of the vehicle, much to the dismay of owners and dealers alike.

Comment Re:Slightly off topic -- now with more off-topic! (Score 1) 429

I'm assuming you're on iOS 4.0.x. In that case, it is best right now to check on Saurik's twitter ( as he is the developer of MobileTerminal. He currently has known bugs - including a nasty MobileSubstrate crash, sounds like what you're seeing - when running on iOS 3.2.x and 4.0.x. MobileTerminal last worked reliably on version 3.1 and earlier.

Comment Re:any dvd professional (Score 1) 80

Hey thanks for the link! A mess isn't a problem; hell, it's better than what I have -- nothing!

I could be wrong about -deinterlace using cycles when it isn't necessary; I'm very much an amateur at this stuff still. For me, I've been using mencoder with -vf pullup,softskip for telecine'd content. It's slower, but the results (IMO) look better than ffmpeg, particularly for animation. For the mencoder tasks, I use a modified version of the script found at this blog:

Comment Re:any dvd professional (Score 1) 80

Nice script, but two things..

First, ffmpeg's deinterlacer kinda sucks. Especially if you're working with NTSC broadcast (60000/1001fps) content, because really you want to be doing a pullup. Since in your example you're using 24000/1001, I guess it's progressive content. In that case, do you really need to deinterlace at all? If you do, you might be interested in the "top" parameter (see the manpage) for setting which field is first in interlaced content; usually it won't be necessary, but it's nice to have the ability. Just throw "-top -1" somewhere in there so it'll always autodetect, or if you want to get fancy, leverage ffprobe to tell you which field is first; I think you can do that with 'ffprobe -show_streams'.

Second, I find a crf of 18 to 20 to be ideal for DVD content, particularly fast motion. Higher values tend to *just barely* starve the encoder of data during high/fast motion; it's more noticeable on a scaled-up display IMO.

What are the opinions of other ffmpeg+x264 users out there?

Comment Re:Easier for denialists (Score 1) 895

With regards to moderation, it seems in the past 6 to 12 months, suddenly the same people not only keep getting mod points, but they get 10-20 of them at a time! When your "average" moderator only gets 5 points roughly once every two months, it's easy to see what has happened lately to moderation. As for me? I guess I pissed off slashcode a while back when tagging was still new, and one day a bunch of people (myself included) gave every story a "dontmebro" tag. dont-agw-mebro would be perfect for this one!

Comment Re:Well this sucks!!!! (Score 1) 284

While the rate is overall less, the means is what really matters. All of the suicides (afaik) have been jumps from a building. Jumping off a building makes a very bold, very public statement. Plus, it guarantees the jumper's family something like 110,000 yuan; that's over $16k in US! To the worker making less than $1k/month, that's a big chunk of change to "give" to your family. It's very sad, and it's good to see someone (Apple) at least making some effort toward the positive. No one should feel like they have to choose suicide.

Comment Re:Sued by your IP... (Score 1) 861

In a nutshell, here's the difference between civil cases and criminal cases in the US. In a civil case, it is considered to be a person (or party/parties) versus another person and/or parties. This is your typical lawsuit case. In a criminal case, law enforcement seeks to bring criminal charges against a person or persons. The police collect the evidence, detectives process, and typically the district attorney (DA) will actually bring the charges up on behalf of the State.

So long story short, while stealing is indeed a criminal offense, you'll never find a DA willing to take that case, for the flimsy evidence reasons listed all over slashdot anytime stuff like this comes up. As a result, the only option left for a company or corporation like this is a civil trial, via their lawyers.

There's more to it, like how winning in a civil trial is much easier to do generally. For a good example, see the criminal and civil trials of OJ Simpson. In the criminal trial he was found not guilty, but in the civil trial he was found "liable", and had a judgment levied against him by the families of the two murder victims.

Comment Re:Really now? (Score 1) 145

Interestingly, the maiden name has lost its value in recent times. It used to be that the moment a woman got married, her maiden name all but vanished; these days, it seems the younger married woman prefers to use her maiden name as a new middle name.

The maiden name was always a goofy "security" thing anyway; long before the internet, a little social engineering is all it took to glean a maiden name.

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