Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment Re:Target audience (Score 1) 416

I still thought Opera had advertising in the interface, and had actively avoided using it. After your comment, I read their 1Q report -- apparently they're working on back ends to compress web data to send to their Opera mobile browsers (less bandwidth), along with a Google partnership for the desktop search (and other ventures).

I wondered how long it would take for streaming movies to get ads embedded within, or around the display frame. Combine this innovation with the picture recognition advertising technology, and preference targeting, and I'm afraid the synergy of the underlying revenue stream would be insurmountable.

Would Dish Network or DirecTV have prior art on some aspect of this? They both currently have integrated ads within the program guide. Or the TVGuide channel, with the incessant video ad at the top? Did someone think to include an ad frame on the new TVs that connect to the internet and show videos and web pages? How about Microsoft's and Dish Network's WebTV? Video games with a "pay to continue" timer?

Comment Re:One of the most un-American things I've ever re (Score 1) 618

We've set up a system in which the priority is short term quarterly gains, and that's what we get. If you want a viable society in the long term, you have to invest in basic research.

For now, quarterly results are great, because we're still coasting on all the innovation of previous years. There has been no disruptive technology to dislodge this mindset.

However, if one or two companies have a mindset of finding a competitive advantage by doing research for a couple of years, they could leapfrog existing companies with their newer processes. But, no guarantee of finding an advantage. It takes visionaries to look farther than the quarterly cash flow sheets.

Most companies will not do long-term research until necessary. The advantage of waiting for a new innovation to appear (from someone else's research) is that it's not near as expensive to clone the advantage for yourself.

So, our current model is that small companies spend lots of money looking for competitive advantages against larger companies, find one, and promptly get bought out or cloned.

Comment Re:PvP could be different - current designs are ba (Score 3, Informative) 178

Or perhaps having every guard in every town on the continent kill you on sight? You think people would randomly attack strangers? Ganking would vanish in a heartbeat. You'd probably end up with a feudal system very quickly, where everyone was in one of a few massive guilds that would issue kill on sight orders for anyone that harmed one of their own- this may not be what the designers/players want, but it would work. Make losing hurt and the ganking issue solves itself

What you are describing was implemented in Ultima Online. Kill a player, all the guards in cities mark you KoS (kill on sight). The solution was to not go to cities anymore. No banking, but there's plenty of killed player corpses to loot.

So, roving gangs of PKers hang out at the load points between areas, and kill your character while your computer is loading the next area's graphics. The solution for a while was the formation of anti PKers, who would descend in mass and swarm a PK group. But, now their characters were also flagged as PKers.

So yes, it ended up as a feudal system. Unfortunately, it was a world where the PK eventually won.

Comment Old Knowledge vs. New (Score 1) 599

At least I'm not the only one watching these programs -- Holmes on Homes may be the one you are referencing.

Ideally, an older contractor (or programmer) has to have a young mindset. Continuing to do what has worked in the past makes it harder for your work to interface with current methodologies. Writing database software using ODBC.DLL calls or not using Ditra under your new bathroom tile floors -- it means that your work will not mesh with current practices.

I would expect a specialist in their field to remain mostly up-to-date on their knowledge, or let me know they specialize in a particular older technology. Or, one would hope, they can do both.

Comment Re:MySQL & LDAP? (Score 2, Interesting) 345

We are talking about making the distro as lite as possible. Putting the entire games suite takes up another big chunk. I never understood the reasoning behind the "games suite" to begin with. Wouldn't it be better if people chose their own games?

For most Windows users, there are only four games -- Solitaire, Spider Solitaire, Minesweeper, and (for some) the pinball game. When they see all of the games available from the live Ubuntu CD, they are interested in finding out more. As a selling point, seeing the list of games already installed has impact on end users. Showing them all of the games available for free via the package management system just seals the deal.
(Yes, XP has the Internet-enabled games as well. Meh.)

Programming

Reuse Code Or Code It Yourself? 429

eldavojohn writes "I began coding for a project that had simple requirements for my employer — Web services and a test application for them. But requirements have been creeping, as they always do. Initially I had decided to use the Spring Framework with Hibernate. And I re-used a lot of libraries that made things simple and quick for me. The new requests coming in involve capabilities beyond those of the frameworks. Now, I used to be told that good programmers write code and great programmers reuse code. It's starting to look like I would have saved myself a whole lot of time if I had written the database transaction using JDBC instead of Hibernate — now that I'm married to this object model framework, some of this stuff doesn't look doable. So what is better for the majority of software projects out there: reuse code, or code from scratch? What elements or characteristics of a problem point to one option over the other?"

Comment Re:Dialog boxes shut off critical thinking (Score 2, Interesting) 568

I think the solution is to make the buttons themselves say what they do, rather than clicking Ok or Cancel, have the button say "Exit crashed program", or "Install new program" or what have you. Always being OK or Cancel conditions people to just blindly click.

The Apple user interface guidelines have always stated that verbs should be used on command buttons. Inserting a blank disk under Mac OS pops up the "Format" or "Eject" dialog box. On Windows, the text says "To format the disk, click OK. To quit, click CANCEL" with "OK" or "Cancel" buttons.
Of course, if you put something other than OK or CANCEL in the dialog box, most Windows users freeze up. They don't know what to click.
Making users read the dialog box text helps. Just make sure the text is actually useful for making a decision.

The Courts

RIAA's $222k Verdict Is Likely To Be Set Aside 224

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Apparently the RIAA's 'big gun' didn't fare so well this morning in Duluth, when he tried to persuade the judge in Capitol v. Thomas that the part of the Copyright Act which says 'by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending', can be disregarded. According to an in-person account by Wired.com the Judge indicated that he is likely to grant a mistrial, setting aside the $222,000 jury verdict based upon his incorrect jury instruction, and that he will probably hand down his decision in September. Just yesterday some of the same lawyers got rebuffed by the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in their attempt to argue that Cablevision's online storage for its customers constitutes a copyright infringement, in Cartoon Network v. CSC Holdings. There, too, the content owners had argued that the wording of the Copyright Act did not mean what it said. There, too, the Court politely but firmly disagreed."
The Courts

Submission + - SPAM: Identity theft nets fraudster 16 years in prison

coondoggie writes: "A United States District sentenced Isaac Allen this week to a 16 ½ years in the slammer for identity theft and bank fraud. According to court documents, Allen and Pasco, along with other members of their ring, defrauded a series of banks in Florida, including Fifth Third Bank, BB&T, Bank of America and other financial institutions, by stealing names, social security numbers and other personal identifying information of individuals and then posing as these persons to obtain credit cards and credit lines from these financial institutions, the DOJ stated. Pasco and Allen then used the credit cards, drew down the credit lines and absconded when payment was due. They stole more than $150,000 through this scheme. [spam URL stripped]"
Link to Original Source
Software

Journal Journal: OpenOffice 2.2

At OpenOffice's web site we can get the new release of the suite. Bug fixing and new features, specially for Base and Calc are now present, including the ability to import Excel Sheets with Pivot tables from external data, among other thing, according to the release notes.

Science

Australia Outlaws Incandescent Light Bulb 944

passthecrackpipe writes "The Australian Government is planning on making the incandescent light bulb a thing of the past. In three years time, standard light bulbs will no longer be available for sale in the shops in Australia (expect a roaring grey market) and everybody will be forced to switch to more energy efficient Fluorescent bulbs. In this move to try and curb emissions, the incandescent bulb — which converts the majority of used energy to heat rather then light — will be phased out. Environmental groups have given this plan a lukewarm reception. They feel Australia should sign on to the Kyoto protocol first. A similar plan was created together with Phillips, one of the worlds largest lighting manufacturers."
The Almighty Buck

Submission + - Have you been Robbed Recently? Check Ebay!

fistfullast33l writes: "A man from Great Neck, Long Island has been arrested on charges of stealing electronic equipment and selling it on Ebay. The police were tipped off when one of his alledged victims was searching for a replacement GPS device and found a perfect match — almost too perfect. A quick check of the serial number (note to cybercriminals: don't post that) showed that it was the exact device that had been stolen. What else gave the theif away? From the article: "Police and prosecutors were hesitant to provide details of how they determined all the devices had been stolen, but at least two of the laptops were stamped "Property of St. John's University.'' Detective Ray Cote noted that the GPS devices specifically had the addresses of the legitimate owners programmed in and police were now contacting those victims to eventually return the items.""
XBox (Games)

Submission + - Games on Vista Will Connect to Xbox Live

nmb3000 writes: There has always been a separation between PC games and their cousins on game consoles, and one of these defining barriers has been the inability to play networked games that mix PC and console clients together into a seamless cross-platform experience. It seems, however, that this may be about to change with a new lineup of games coming of Windows Vista in 2007. Microsoft recently announced at CES that games for Vista utilizing DirectX 10 will be able to connect and participate fully in Xbox Live's services. This includes online game play and all related features such as voice communication. This means popular online games such as Halo 2's multiplayer will no longer be limited to console owners; from the article: "In addition, "Halo® 2" for Windows Vista (Microsoft Game Studios/Bungie Studios) will also support Live, including enabling Windows gamers to communicate with Xbox Live gamers and earn Achievements in the famed "Halo 2" campaign — a first for any "Halo" title on any platform."
Handhelds

Submission + - Nokia announces N800, developer device program

Sunspire writes: Today at CES, Nokia's CEO announced the immediate availability of the Nokia N800 Linux-powered Internet tablet. Compared to its predecessor the 770, the N800 sports twice the memory, dual SD slots, the same brilliant 225 DPI screen and a beefier ARMv6 core. Nokia also cited partnerships with both Skype and Rhapsody to bring the services to the tablet. Nokia also announced a Developer Device Program at their developer site maemo.org, whereby 500 Open Source developers in the Maemo community will be able to buy a N800 for just $99. The company has been busy grabbing prominent developers from the Open Source community and is now one of the a key backers of the GNOME software stack, including GTK, D-Bus and GStreamer, supporting the projects through both sponsorships and code. The tablets are a strange fusion of proprietary and Open Source software, and so far it seems to be benefiting all parties involved.

Slashdot Top Deals

Adding features does not necessarily increase functionality -- it just makes the manuals thicker.

Working...