Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:It seems to me that a few days is more than eno (Score 4, Insightful) 113

This is plus 5 Insightful? More like plus 5 Sad. Or are most people here Americans with scientifically proven zero empathy.

"Empathy" means the ability to understand and share the feelings of a fellow human. Mitt's assertions to the contrary aside, "businesses are [not] people too". So empathy has nothing to do with it.

A business exists solely for the exchange of goods and/or services for money (or other goods and/or services). If a business can't provide me with the goods and/or services I want, they have no reason to continue to exist for all it matters to me. I would only even give them that few days I mentioned to restore service, as a matter of convenience to me - If I could realistically switch ISPs, for example, 15 seconds after discovering my internet had gone down again, Verizon could kiss my hairy white ass goodbye.

Now if you want to talk about loyalty - I have loyalty to my friends. I have loyalty to my family. I have loyalty to people that have given me a reason to care about them. The company that, despite my opting out of everything possible on their privacy policy still has their "partners" send me life insurance offers once a month? Yeah, not so much loyalty there - More like "simmering resentment" that such complete bastards manage to have the best game in town.

Comment Re:It seems to me that a few days is more than eno (Score 4, Insightful) 113

ISTM that you're an unreasonable little snot, since the speed of the resolution of the problem is completely dependent upon the cause of the problem. What is reasonable, though, is timely customer feedback.

Sorry, but 100% wrong. Yeah, timely feedback (including the magic phrase "prorated refund for downtime") will buy you a few days (at most). But if I actually pay for your service, I don't give two shits if your only datacenter just got hit by a Tsunami - Get your service back up now, or by next week your competition will provide it for me.

Comment Depends on price. (Score 1) 113

If I get something for free, then obviously not an issue. File a bug report, and if they don't fix it before you lose interest, move on, but you can't really complain too much about it.

If I pay for a service, then my willingness to put up with outages depends entirely on their willingness to not charge me during downtimes.

Now, if I need the service in question, they only get a few days before I find someone else to provide it, regardless of free or not.

Note that this assumes having no real contract in place specifying an SLA. If you have that, then you have the acceptable downtimes and repercussions for exceeding them all nice and neatly spelled out.

Comment Re:Robo lawsuit trolling (Score 1) 281

That is patently false. Landlines have been proven to be far more resilient to local emergencies than cell phones dozens of times.

By "local", I mean "house on fire", "gas main explosion on my block", that sort of thing. Local.

Hurricane Sandy did not count as "local". Earthquakes don't count as local. A three million acre wildfire does not count as local. Yes, in widespread emergencies, landlines hold up better - But as I already said, they don't do you much good from your car, two states away.

That said, really, do what you want. Go ahead and pay $50 a month for crappy home phone service. Every little "necessity" in the minds of the old and stupid adds to what we consider a living wage in this country, which makes my disposable income all the higher by not caring in the least about having a physical copper wire running through the wall and to my phone. ;)

Comment Subtlety. (Score 3, Funny) 146

In the style of Bruce Schneier's movie-plot threat scenarios, what's the most nefarious use you can anticipate such remote outlet control being used for?

Turn off the fridge after the victim goes to work for the day, and turn it back on about an hour before they get home.

Repeat until they die... of Botulism! <Cue evil laugh>

Comment Re:If you're putting a space heater on a remote... (Score 1) 146

Aww, I only want to make my bathroom nice and toasty by remote control before I get out of bed, you cretin! :)

But yeah, seriously. Great tool for lights or remotely cycling power to a home server. Dumb dumb dumb idea to connect anything intended to make large amounts of heat (coffee pot) or dangerous motions (table saw).

Oddly, I thought UL/CE wouldn't approve products like this specifically for that reason - That we simply can't trust most people to have the common sense not to try to remote-start their electric self-propelled lawnmower. Nice to see networked outlets finally exist, but I fully expect we'll hear about plenty of Darwin awards as a result of plain ol' misuse, no need to require malware in that equation.

Comment Re:Robo lawsuit trolling (Score 1) 281

I've arrived at the point where I hate my land line. I'd drop it in a second but my wife thinks it's important.

Grow a pair and cancel it. Duh.

"Sorry honey, but we waste way too much money on a useless, obsolete service that no one but fraudsters ever uses. In a local emergency, our cell phones have a better chance of working than the land line; and in a wide-scale emergency, you can't use the land-line from the car as we flee the coming Tsunami."

Comment Re:Really? (Score 2) 410

So the government botched a sting operation called Fast and Furious and you're going to frame them as if it's standard operating procedure?

Only the "botched" part. The rest suggests that our government had more of a clue than normal.

/ Still waiting on that 1998 budget...
// No, they did not - In 2009, they passed an "omnibus spending bill". Spending approval does not equal a budget, not by a long shot.

Comment Doesn't mean what most of you think it means... (Score 1) 320

Perhaps one of our resident "IAAL"s can clarify this, but in the absence of an explicit license, doesn't copyright still apply to a code snippet by default? So rejecting the use of the GPL or other FOSS doesn't mean just any corporate asshat can come along and steal your work - Quite the opposite, it means no one can legally use your code.

Which works out perfectly for the hobbyist coders - including these so-called "POSS" coders - who really don't give a damn about who "owns" a given code snippet. As the only real down side, such an approach makes it impossible for a company like RedHat to contribute to the community by improving that code, because without some sort of explicit license, no sane company will touch it ("Yeah, that Windows 9 thing you guys wrote? It counts as a derivative work of MyFirstPokerApp, thanks for giving me that private Caribbean island I always wanted, Redmond!"). But the original author still very much enjoys the protection of copyright-by-default, at least in the US.

Comment Re:Missing option (Score 1) 217

Causing an interruption to learn that you need to buy bread on the way home is not acceptable.

The caller doesn't magically know that you have a meeting going on. They don't know you've gone out to lunch with a potential customer. They don't know you've decided to play a 3pm game of hide-the-sausage with your secretary. They don't know you have after-dinner company over for Poker on a Tuesday night.

I guess I just can't grasp the idea of ascribing rudeness to someone for what amount to their lack of psychic powers.

Comment Re:Missing option (Score 3, Informative) 217

Not just important, but urgent - real time.

That makes me wonder, why do you talk to anyone live except in emergencies? They could just text or email you, and you could deal with such tasks as exchanging pleasantries over dinner in a quick 30 second read through. Probably not even any response necessary, just a round-table of status updates ("Oh, can we parking lot that comment about your boyfriend, I don't give a damn about your relationships, sorry Sally") from all the diners present and chew chew chew before heading off to "important" things.

I guess I just tend to consider "life", and fellow humans in general, as inherently real-time phenomena. As opposed to merely one more queue of annoyances to process when someone with whom I would like to chat can spare some cycles. Then again, I also just ignore the damned phone when I don't feel like taking a call, and don't secretly harbor the delusion that everyone magically knows when I might (or might not) want to talk to them. What do people do, check into FourSquare as available to take calls from Mom?

Apologies in advance for the vitriol, but seriously? I consider myself one of the most anti-social people I know, and it still just blows me away that some people consider making a phone call to a friend rude.

Comment Re:Missing option (Score 5, Insightful) 217

If you interrupt what I'm doing, when you don't even know what I'm doing, it had better be important.

Let me get this straight:
You have chosen to carry a communications device, on which anyone from your mother to your coworker to a telemarketer could call you at any time...
You have chosen not to turn this device off or even silence it...
You have chosen to take a call in the physical presence of someone else in a context you admit counts as impolite...

...And you would consider it "rude" that someone would rather talk to a friend for 30 seconds than annoy everyone around both of you with 10 round trips of "yeah not a ringtone but still annoying" bleeps?

I take it back - I shouldn't have closed that "cranky old man" tag. I clearly don't understand what passes for "polite" among those damned kids on my lawn. ;)

Comment Missing option (Score 0) 217

Technically I send more than zero, but less than one, per day. Perhaps two per month.

<cranky old man warning>

And of those, virtually all of them just send one of my contacts to someone ("Hey, do you have Dave's new number?" "Yeah, sure... 846-" "whoah, hold on, I don't have a pen handy, can you just text it to me?" "Grrr... Finewhateverbye").

I basically see no point whatsoever to texting - At the unbelievable rates to send an itty bitty delivery-not-guaranteed data packet, I could call someone (after using up my monthly minutes and out of my local "free" area) and talk for a good five minutes for the same price.

Texting seriously needs to die. If you have an old-school phone, it takes less time and less money to call than to text; if you have a smartphone, why the hell don't you just run a real IM client?

</cranky old man warning>

Comment Re:Start of something big. (Score 2) 171

Why stop there? Have a separate camera, a separate music player too. What a wonderful future that will be where instead of one device capable of doing lots of things we have lots of individual devices dedicated to a single purpose.

I know you jest, but seriously, some functions just don't conveniently tie into an all-in-one device. Smartphones take crap pictures, for example. And as TFA points out, they really don't make a very good form-factor as phones, either.

I actually kinda like your (and TFA's) idea, taken to an extreme. Use your tablet as a sort of personal server for storage and "real" communication, and everything else can just talk back to it via NFC.

Only annoyance there - Power. If we can solve that one without needing to plug in half a dozen peripherals every night, I'd call this a winner.

Comment Re:Definition of a cap (Score 4, Informative) 605

I wish they did that to green card caps, though.

Why bother? Not only won't they enforce immigration laws, they outright sue state and town PDs who attempt to do so to force them to stop.

Visas? Immigration? Meh, c'mon in, apply for welfare, and retire. Only those of us dumb enough to work for a living as natural born citizens have anything to complain about here.

Slashdot Top Deals

The one day you'd sell your soul for something, souls are a glut.