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Comment Cost plus Facebook deterred me, but I shoulda gone (Score 1) 168

I skipped my High School reunion primarily because the cost of going to it was pretty high considering that I already was in touch with everyone through Facebook.

There was a period a few years ago when it seems that I friended or was friended-by everyone I was friends with or socially on neutral terms with (I refused to connect with the few ass hats I never liked from those years). I can pretty much find out whatever I want at any time and if I felt compelled to make an impromtu reunion, I could (and "we" have, speaking from the network of people). When the official reunion came up asking for over $100/person, I had a hard time justifying it.

Sure, people went and now I actually regret somewhat not going since there is something to be said about having a proper organized place for all these people to get together. And for the folks who say that "why would I ever want to see XXXX?" The most common thing I heard from a range of friends was that they had a blast hanging out with people that they weren't friends with or never talked to in their life.

I'll definitely go to the next one.

Comment Re:#occupy impressions (Score 1) 933

Coming to NYC from just about anywhere else in the country will be a shock. I've got a friend from the mid-west who is basically Larry the Cable Guy and whenever I've talked with him about coming to NYC there seems to be a general concern (I'd almost say fear in his gut) of coming here. Too many people. Too busy. Too easy to get "run over" (hypothetically and literally) compared to the easy country roads of where he's from. Heck, I had the reverse culture shock going out there for the first time in my life for college.

But the key thing from what I just said is "too many people". In a city like New York, you can't have 8 million people PLUS visitors and not have that many cops. Sure, you did see one on every corner, but was that in Times Square? Financial District? Some other tourist area? As well, some of those might just be the parking meter or traffic staff which typically don't carry a weapon, only a billy club, radio and maybe handcuffs / zip-ties at best.

Not saying it doesn't look like a police state, but as someone who has spent most of his life on this side of the country, I'd say it doesn't really bother you and when something bad does happen, you're glad there are these patrols around to respond quickly. A city the size of NYC would fall into chaos if they weren't there. In general the police aren't here to mess with you and they've got bigger things to worry about. When I was in high school, I remember drinking a beer on the sidewalk and asking a cop a question and there was no problem (yes, that would be underage btw). They're just doing their job but when the order comes to preserve order, they need to be tough because the city is a tough place. Heck, the city is safer now than it has been in many decades.

Comment Capturing the power (Score 1) 229

I remember talking with someone at an "art museum" (read: an old worn down to the point of being dangerously condemned ex-paper plant) noting how the town's power problems could be solved by somehow tapping the energy of the freight trains that would rumble by.

For some reason, I guess this guy figured there was no degenerative effect on the freight train by capturing its power or like it just comes for free. It has to come from somewhere.

Not entirely related to TFA, but felt like making a rant.

Comment Re:IT has always been cyclic; no surprises coming (Score 1) 444

But what about the average cost of a UNIX workstation or server was traditionally much higher than a white box x86 PC?

Go back to 1997 when I was working at a firm that had a huge deployment of Sun workstations and servers globally. The SparcStation 20's or Ultra 1's on peoples' desk easily ran several thousand dollars (I think my Ultra 1 167MHz box without Creator 3D or fancy stuff like that ran nearly $15k). Don't even talk about the servers. Now compare that to some Compaq PC for $3000?

(yes, I know you can build a PC for cheaper but large organizations that do cause these trends tend to use vendor suppliers that charge a LOT more for this stuff than you could at best buy)

Comment Re:"No ecosystem" (Score 1) 280

I was hoping that this is going to do one of two things:
  1. 1. Dump (from an economics perspective) WebOS devices on the market with the side effect of generating interest and developers on WebOS. Then, introduce new WebOS devices for the sudden influx of applications that appear.
  2. 2. Completely bail-out.

Unfortunately, I think if people convert these things to Android, #2 is more or less inevitable. I do think that WebOS is a real fine piece of work, but Palm screwed up early on with their developer relations (a good example here). I do hope something along the lines of #1 does happen, though...

Comment Old Apple ][ (Score 1) 422

I recently pulled my old Apple ][+ and //e out of storage and set it up on my workbench in the basement. The three shoeboxes of floppy disks were kept on a shelf in a living space (rather than attic), so they appeared to be fine.

Turned it on and it all worked. Surprisingly, the disks I've tried are still working perfectly as far as I can tell.

I don't know what I'll do with this equipment in another 30 years, but it was satisfying to hear my wife exclaim "wow! I forgot how primitive those things looked!" when she saw the green monochrome display and fixed font. Now will my kid be impressed in a few years? Who knows.

Comment Re:Mozillacide (Score 1) 599

Apologies or whatever, the point is that everyone is getting nagged to upgrade to FF5 now. Personally, I see that it says "oh, TACO and some other plugin isn't going to work until they upgrade".

That same message has been appearing for over a week now. As such, I'm not touching FF5.

If FF doesn't learn from this and realize that they need to be a bit better about this, I'll probably just switch to Chrome full time.

Comment GMail confuses dots in names (Score 1) 619

I've actually got a similar problem with gmail that is kind of annoying. I have had my address with them since 2004 (when you still needed to be invited to get an account) and scored my first.last name.

Apparently there is someone out there with the same name but decided to be firstlast instead (probably because I took the dot) and I'm guessing they're fine with using it as a login. However, all email that goes to firstlast ends up going into my inbox.

I was good for a while pointing this out to some people (especially when he must have had a date and the girl emailed him to thank him afterwards), but realized that the missing dot is translated to my address which is either a good or bad thing.. not sure. I just ignore and delete firstlast's emails now.

Of course, we could come to a solution for this if gmail had some kind of support email address...

Comment But what about the applications? (Score 1) 249

In the past I went through the effort of finding an old version of Windows 1.0, getting it running and playing with it for all of 20 minutes. Interesting to see what they had, what it did, etc. I still have a VM image somewhere with it in case I ever get bored again. However, what I failed to do at the time was find any software that was actually written for Windows 1.0 that didn't come as part of the installation. Searching the internet for 'software for windows 1.0' (or the variety of phrases I thought of) mostly came up with v1.0 releases of software for Windows; i.e. software that could have been for Windows 95 (say), and it was their v1.0 release. Unfortunately, I didn't come across any sites that had any of that old software. As well, I'm not even what was ever even written for Windows 1.0. Best I could tell, I've only heard that one or two applications were ever written for Windows 1.0, but I can't find the binaries on the internet. Though, I believe you could run Windows 2.0 sofware on 1.0 and vice-versa, at least to some extent. In Windows 3.0 they apparently changed things up enough to require rewrites. Anyone ever find anything?

Comment Re:Won't work (Score 1) 163

Actually, at a stop-and-shop near where I live, the self checkout is not the kind where you need to put things in the bag. You scan it and then put it on a belt that zips it down to where you can bag it. The belt seems to have sensors that detect if something went by and doesn't care how you want to bag or not (reusable bags, anyone?). I've never had to wait for an assistant with this system. Shame I've not seen it anywhere else!

Comment Re:expect it to become (Score 1) 41

Yes, let's only pay the absolute minimum and thereby further dilute service standards.

Not sure I agree with this. I think this would be good simply because there is little in the way of price competition that I've seen lately. Sure, there are lower prices under certain situations, but otherwise the airlines are charging whatever the heck they darn well please. Oh, and shutting other companies out who try to offer cheaper service in some cases.

Case in point: Eos airlines, who offered business class only flights. They had excellent quality and service standards. However, they charged less than American Airlines and they did this by various methods including using less expensive airports (in London, they used Stanstead airport instead of the more expensive Heathrow). AA didn't like this, so they moved in to Stanstead, pushed out Eos, caused Eos to go bankrupt and then shortly after their victory pulled out of Stanstead themselves. Now if you want to fly to London on business class you're back to the more expensive (and lesser quality) American Airlines out of Heathrow.

So cheaper doesn't always mean lesser quality. However, it does motivate others to take action and sometimes it isn't in the best interest of the consumer.

Comment Next Mac Pro? (Score 2) 128

I bet the first production hardware we see this in is the 2011 Mac Pro. Apple seems to get the lead time on these things nowadays so they can once again claim "we're the shiniest" for several weeks.

I'm still quite content with my E5462-based 2008 model, thanks :)

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