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User Journal

Journal Journal: Slashdot tags are crap! Here's why ...

They don't ever stick. I tag something and reload the page. Tag gone.
You can't select tags and see related stories.
Tags that are there are too obvious, prevalent and stupid, like the "Story" tag.
Tags are banal and never critical, this implies censorship.

User Journal

Journal Journal: sadly, all my time wasted, ... thanks /. crew

this is what you get for for contributing...

Undoing moderation to Comment #21744478
Undoing moderation to Comment #21744532
Undoing moderation to Comment #21745300
Undoing moderation to Comment #21745598
Undoing moderation to Comment #21746390

personally, I'm tired of time wasting /. policies

User Journal

Journal Journal: Yea, I've got five mod points again ...

It only took about a year. I guess that's the price for sporting unpopular opinions, especially about Apple.

Now, shall I actually bother to use them?

User Journal

Journal Journal: Slashdot censorship and corruption 1

I'm tired of being abused by the admins (or self seen owners). I contribute my time to /. and then you restrict what I can say and when I can say it. Just because some apple fanboys don't like honest critisism, I no longer was allowed to post anonomously. Or, for that matter, moderate, ever again. Oh, and today, just because I had tried to post several quick comments, someone decide that wasn't to be allowed.

We have a word for this. Abuse. Thanks for abusing free speech and your users. Take your site and go get bent. Typical elitist tyrants.

Hardware Hacking

Journal Journal: Flash embedded device drivers 3

With the current memeory prices, why don't hardware device manufactures include enough EPROM storage to be able to flash the current version of the device's driver? This would allow for faster installs and more comprehesive system recovery. As well, if there was sufficent space, you could store a diagnostics, original, reference, or signed driver there. In fact, using OTP memory would allow the system access to a copy of a secure, signed and uncorrupted driver.


Journal Journal: Deep planet scans

An article about the LAMP probe discusses the multiple types of instruments co-ordinate into a cohesive explorative perspective.


This got me thinking that perhaps a similar approach could see much deeper.

Perhaps using 2,3 or 4 satellites would do the trick. Start with two in synch satellites, one a transmitter, one a receiver, exactly opposite each other. They then could encircle a planet and scan through it, eventually developing a 3D image. If one adds a third satellite, then an deep intersecting cross beam / pulse would be possible, and, if necessary, add a fourth to receive the secondary beam.

I'm thinking the essential issue here is types of transmission, perhaps only neutrinos which may not reveal much if anything.

I wonder what other particles or radiation could be considered for this?

The Internet

Journal Journal: Internet Early Warning Protocol

Wouldn't it be handy if there were a protocol, similiar to NTP, that would allow clients to monitor local conditions for emergency broadcasts?


Journal Journal: YARS: Canadians create really cool chips

The University of Alberta has developed a "new microchip is 10 times smaller and 100 times more energy efficient than currently used chips" ... "The invention employs a new method of processing digital data, known as analog decoding, which uses extremely low levels of power to execute its detection algorithm. The team's research shows no other reported chip uses a lower amount of energy consumed per decoded information bit."

"The team at the iCORE High-Capacity Digital Communications Laboratory, including Dr. Vincent Gaudet, Dr. Christian Schlegel, and former graduate students Dave Nguyen and Chris Winstead, created the microchip while working in the University of Alberta Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. The communications chip was designed by Nguyen, manufactured by CMC (the Canadian Microelectronics Corporation) and tested at the University of Alberta."


YARS: Yet Another Rejected Submission


Journal Journal: Sci-Fi Short Story: Deep Blue

"Well, Professor, that was the largest grant we've ever awarded and you assured us that this computer would know everything."

"Well, yes," said Professor, "and it does, but it simply won't tell us."

"Why?" asked the Chairman of the committee, in surprise.

"It just keeps saying we wouldn't understand," said the professor.

Copyright Tom2tec 2004


Journal Journal: Sci Fi Short: Back In Time

Doctor Durat really wasn't feeling that comfortable. "You see", he explained, "everything 'vibrates' at a subatomic level or rather it's energy signature radiates as a wave. Other objects then receive these 'vibrations' and react, so, in a sense, they record these impressions, much like records do." He paused and looked down, as if to consider whether to continue and then looking up, he went on, "We've ... well, we've discovered a way to ... ah, playback these impressions or recordings, if you will." He looked up and a little nervous as if he was expecting laughter. The reporters waited for him to go on, then after a moment, a tall, lanky fellow from one of the national papers said, "Hey doc, are you saying you can listen ... back in time?"

"Yes, I suppose that's exactly what I'm trying to say, thank you." said the doctor, looking greatly relieved.

At this all the other reporters started yelling at once. The doctor raised his hand for quiet and pointed at John Jamison, a local newspaper reporter he recognized. Jamison stood and looked around the room at all the other reporters with a wide grin and then back at the doctor and said, "Are you kidding? Are you really trying to tell us you can play back what it sounded like here, say yesterday?"

"Well yes, I think we can, in fact, we've arranged a small demonstration, if you'd care to see?" asked the Doctor.

"Sure, absolutely," replied the reporter with a chorus of agreement from the room.

"Excellent, come this way if you please," Dr. Durat called out, motioning to the door behind him.


When everyone had reassembled in the next room, Dr. Durat pointed at a small platform surrounded by massive equipment in the middle of the room.

"That is our, the, time player, if you will" he said, with obvious pride.

He then held up the coffee mug that he'd brought in with him, and walking over, he placed it on the platform. He nodded to one of the other assistants, who nodded back and started quickly typing at one of the numerous PCs. The racks of equipment came to life with a low hum and for a few moments there was a slight ozone smell. Then, directly from a small speaker in front of them, came a vaguely familiar gibberish.

"That's the sound we get directly in the order the receiver records it. Now, we're going to play it backwards." He nodded to the assistant again and this time what they heard was just slightly fuzzy but a clearly recognizable, "We've ... well, we've discovered a way to ... um, playback these impressions or recordings, if you will." and then "Hey doc, are you saying you can listen ... back in time?"

The room erupted with questions. He held up his hand for silence again and pointed at Jamison again. The reporter thought about it and said, "So, how far back can you go?"

Dr. Durat looked at him and said, "Usually right back to when an object was first fashioned."

"You mean to tell me that you can hear everything that coffee cup has ever listened to?" Jamison asked.

"Basically, yes." the doctor replied. "We've gone back, oh ... " he looked over at another assistant, and said, "about a hundred years or so. You see it depends on the age of the object. The oldest one we've worked with so far is really not that old."

"So, why are you telling us this doc, why just reporters and not other scientists?" asked Jamison, suspiciously.

Dr. Durat suddenly looked even more uncomfortable.

"Well, you see, it's because of what we've just discovered." He looked down and then went on little bit slower, "You see, Daly Plaza is not far from here, and one of my assistants..." at this he looked over at the third assistant, who quickly looked down. The doctor continued on saying, "made a recording of the third floor storage room of the School Book Depository that captured the entire events that transpired the day President Kennedy was shot."

At this the room fell silent. A second went by and then pandemonium struck. The doctor held up his hands for silence, but the noise continued for some time.

The doc looked at Jamison, so the reporter also held up his hands and the room suddenly became quiet.

He asked, "So doc, what happened?"

The doctor looked down quietly and said, "We're not sure, they weren't speaking any known human language."

Copyright Tom2tec 2003

It's funny.  Laugh.

Journal Journal: the way things are going, they're going to

Disclaimer: Be warned, what follows is entirely a work of pure and absolute fiction, absolutely none of the following is in anyway true, nor
ever may or likely will be. This post is, and was intended, only and solely as political satire and solely for your personal amusement and
entertainment. Any resemblance to actual events, organizations, people, and places is purely co-incidental and should not be construed as being
based on any actual facts whatsoever. In other words, it ain't at all real. As well, it's long and winded.

Calgary HornBlower - July 1rst 2010 ~ Section E, Page 2
The City Of Calgary Transportation Department today announced a new initiative to analyze transportation costs. Database interoperability will be upgraded to allow the City the authority to access and correlate provincial vehicle registration odometer readings; photo-toll records and vehicle manufacturers service GPS data to be used to determine actual vehicle usage rates. Calgary Transportation has determined that this level of data granularity is required in order to properly understand present and future resource deployment in an efficient and effective manner.Further details concerning this initiative may be found on Calgary Transportation's Information Portal.

Calgary HornBlower - October 13, 2010 ~ City Section Page 3
City Council today approved a tentative schedule and budget for the next stage of Calgary Transportation's Information strategy. In other routine matters...

Calgary HornBlower - December 20, 2010 - Main Section Page 7
City Council posted a series of initiatives on next years budget agenda,
including ... funding for the next stage of Calgary Transportation's IS
effort .

Calgary HornBlower - April 1rst, 2011 ~ City Section Page 1
In a relatively one-sided vote, City Council today gave final approval to
the 2011 budget, among the items going ahead are ... and Calgary
Transportations Westbrook and Spruce Cliff LRT stations, new interchanges
at 16 Ave - 19th St and 90 Ave and 14 St SW, as well as the new IS system.

Alberta Transport News - May 9th, 2011, Page Four
Press Release - Calgary Transportation, a leader in blah blah blah blah
blah, today announced the first tests of the new IS system have been completed and the results have been positive. CT is now moving into the
next stage...

Calgary HornBlower - July 1rst 2011 ~ Section E, Page 2
Today CT announced the first of several initiatives designed to lower the
infrastructure costs associated with the City's growth, Several
partnerships with private industries will be established. This will allow
us to fund several necessary projects ahead of schedule and will provide
CT with the specialized expertise needed to implement a comprehensive
integrated transportation system.

Calgary Moon, Nov 11, 2011 ~ Page Six
Though details are still to be worked out and official announcements won't
be made until later this year, the much-criticized proposal to have a
private developer design, build, own and lease back the new transportation
corridor, the so-called West East Super-Way, is now a go.

Calgary HornBlower - July 1rst 2012 ~ Section E, Page 2
The HornBlower has learned that as part of the new CalTran IS systems
capabilities, each household will now be provided with a detailed
breakdown of the transportation costs per vehicle on a monthly basis.
Furthermore CalTran has shown that there are significant costs associated
with vehicle usage during peak periods and specific to the type of vehicle
used. As part of the IS initiative, vehicle occupancy data is being
considered as a useful addition to the data already procured from Motor
Vehicle Department and could easily be correlated with the vehicle's
position. CalTran plans to use this information to allocate MOVs more
lanes during peak periods and in upgrading the predications and warnings
available to drivers via the Critical Roadway Alert System. (CRAS)

Calgary Moon Jan 31, 2012, ~ Page 5
In a late breaking announcement, City Council has voted to allow the bid
to start for the a proposed private high speed corridor under the CNP
right of way. CNP predicts it can have a major impact on high traffic
levels if it's allowed to develop the state of the art guided private
transportation corridor.

The Planet - Sept 1rst, 2013 ~ Section: Alberta Page 1
Today, after bitter debate, Council narrowly passed a bill that allows
CalTran to bill companies and individuals for abusive or excessive roadway
use. Commercial traffic in residential areas after hours, single occupancy
vehicles in MOV lanes, excess weight, and trucks on non-truck routes will
be charged according to the following fee schedule...

Calgary HornBlower - July 1rst 2013 ~ Section 2, Page 2
Privacy advocates today raised serious concerns over the sale of vehicle
patterns to the Insurance Council Of Canada. "It is our belief that this
system has the potential to be seriously misused by the client firms of
the council", said a spokesperson in a prepared statement. Meanwhile,
ISUC, the Insurance Society Of Upper Canada reiterated it's stance that
the data would not be used to profile individuals, rather specific types
of vehicles and usage patterns.

Calgary HornBlower - July 1rst 2015 ~ Section 2, Page 1
Today Council approved the privatization of road construction and
maintenance with the caveat that the City Of Calgary remain the sole
shareholder. The head of CalTran stated that this was a necessary step if
the current traffic situation was to improve. Citing higher than
anticipated demand and expense, the best option, he said is to let the
traffic network generate funds based on usage. The current system unfairly
advocates resources, he said, citing the last GO plan study. Several
companies, including CNP, Macro$mart Canada and WestRocket have approached
the City in regards to these proposals.

The Planet & Post - June 20th, Business Section, Page One
After the highly successful event, CalTran Corporation or CTC's new board
of directors issued the following statement...

Calgary HornBlower Offline - July 1rst 2015 ~ Section 1, Page 4
Today CTC unveiled the new Driver Information Portal and the new monthly
statement which will be included in with the utility and parks statements.
This information will provide Calgarians with an accurate picture of the
costs associated with Transportation. CTC hopes this information will
allow drivers to more intelligently use transportation resources and in so
doing will lower the current high demands placed on the corporation.

The Regional - Prairies Edition, November 6th, 2015 ~ Transportation Page
Under the new arrangement, the Mayor says almost half of the $500-billion
price-tag for the corridor will be provided by a private concern with the
other half, or more than half, expected to be funded by interest-bearing
fixed-rate savings bonds that Calgarians would have the first chance at
purchasing. Furthermore, the bond would offer taxpayers an RRSP tax break.

Neighborly News February 15th, 2016 ~ Page Two
After some debate, Council voted to send CTC's proposal for a basic
monthly usage fee levied on drivers, back to the revenue and resources
committee for further study. As well...

Calgary HornBlower - July 1rst 2017 ~ Section E, Page 2
A number of motorists failed to get to work on time today after their
vehicles refused to start. CT blames the problem on a Macro$mart software
upgrade gone awry and says the problem was resolved quickly and the
affected motorists vehicles returned to service in the shortest possible
time... Macro$mart denied it's software was to blame citing a study
showing that flaws in the open source Joe language were largely to blame
for instabilities in ZP.

The Calgary Moon March 3rd 2017 Headline: Another Hike! ~ Page One
Today CTC applied for a rate increase to cover the cost of the new outer
ring CTrain expansion. Citing steady growth in the numbers of Transit
users, CTC again stressed the need for an increase in the PTR (Personal
Transportation Rate).

Calgary HornBlower - July 4rst 2017 ~ Business Section, Page One
CTC today announced a partnership with Macro$mart Floppyware. Macro$mart
Canada defended the purchase as good business and said it clearly
demonstrated it's commitment to community infrastructure development and
support ... In a related story the WES road has been renamed the MES road,
after a generous donation from Macro$mart's founder ...

Deal Finder News Online August 2018 Edition ~ Page 66
Dismissing the number of complaints from motorists who have not been able
to settle their accounts, a spokesperson from M$-CTC stated that the fee
scheduled was approved by City Council and those with concerns should be
expressing them to their alderman. M$-CTC is operating fully with in the
guidelines established by council...

Calgary HornBlower Offline - December 1rst, 2020 ~ Section D, Page 8 ... and under the new proposal, delinquent vehicles can be sold to cover
outstanding M$-CTC monthly upgrade and licensing fees...

Calgary HornBlower - July 1rst 2020 ~ Section 2, Page 3
M$-CTC angrily denied today that the inability to drive was a serious
concern giving the alternatives provided by the company. The spokesperson
went on to say that all drivers with overdue accounts had full access to
an managerial appeal panel, therefore no further work hours extensions or
light traffic road allowances could be granted until all patches and
upgrades were purchased, countersigned and installed ...

Calgary HornBlower - Sept 1rst 2020 ~ Headline
Fatal Exception Error causes city wide crash. Details to follow as soon as staffing levels return to normal.



Journal Journal: On copyright and complexity

It seems that to me, laws are like gears, it is possible to have too many of them. Like any system, the more diversity, the more complexity. The more complexity, the more uncertainty. The more parts, the more friction.

Why should more laws be better than less laws? If one considers the over all original design of legal system, it seems clear that the founding fathers were mindful of this problem of over-encumberance and worked towards the goal of simplicity. I believe they, taken by the reflection of justice they saw amoung themselves, thought that providing a spare and functional machine, would inspire those that followed to value efficency over weight. Perhaps however, that trust was their flaw in an almost otherwise perfect political hack. If only they had as clearly seen the end and middle as well as the beginning, I believe they would have provided for a mechanism to force expiration or replacement of old law whenever new law was needed. For clearly, the current political operating system is needlessly encrusted.

Perhaps what is needed is an open expert system to model the legal structure of laws? For perhaps, if the people could "see" the overall effect of a new law, or even an old one, we might not be willing to pay such a price. It seems the best hacks are not brute force efforts to overwhelm, but rather, a subtle introduction of intelligence into an larger established system. Truly, it's hard to change others, but they will move, if they know they want too.


Journal Journal: What's wrong with Slashdot ... 1

Hi, my name is Tom and I am a slashdotolic. I am guilty of reading almost every article each and every day. I read the top comments for any story that interests me. Personally, I think there's some excellent work that's been done here by the admins, developers and users. That being said, I really have nothing to say about the users, I have no expectations except diversity and honesty. To all the contributors and readers, I applaud you, good and bad alike. However, despite the good work the admins and developers do and have done, there are some problems. I hope they will read this and reflect upon it rather than dismissing it.

Problem one: Who decides which articles get posted? Why is it so autocratic and apparently biased. Many, many people have commented on this. This is simply editorial abuse and privilege and needs to be removed if Slashdot is ever to be an "open" system. I wonder how many things I've missed out on thanks to someone else's personal tastes or inclinations.

My solution, put all submitted articles in a pool, let the moderators decide which ones go public. Or, alternatively, publish all submissions and let us mod articles directly or, at least, mod the people making these decisions and or the submitters directly. Or, how about letting subscribers post articles directly? This could easily be overseen with less effort than the current system.

Problem two: The inability to mod and comment on the same article. Ok, I can understand not modding your own posts, but after losing my mod efforts and points for posting a useful comment after the fact is counter intuative and productive. This "rule" was enacted from the fear of abuse but causes more damage than it avoids. Personally, I'll be contributing less now because of it.

My solution, get rid of this policy. Alternately, return the mod points after the comment is submitted. Or, at the very freakin least, make the warning more obvious by requiring a click to agree. Anything less is simply bad design.

Problem three: Lack of democratic openess. Yes, I know, I didn't do the work of writing the code and I don't do the admin work either. But all of that is dwarfed by the time spent by commentors, moderators and submitters. Let these people, or at least the subscribers, vote on the rules that govern the system. Anything less is tyranny.

Problem four: Lack of true anonymity. This is a major concern. It's obvious that even if the users don't know who you are if you post as an AC, the admins and the system does. I bet we've missed some valuable info being posted due to fear that the admins or the system could be or are corrupted.

Problem five: An inability to see all my old posts or at least the highest ranked ones when visiting my user space. No explanation required, just the question, how could this be? Sad, eh.

Anyone out there ambitious and capable enough to rework the slash code into such a system has my support. We need a less controlled avenue of free, relevant, speech.

Democracy is a great theory, why are some afraid to stand on it?

User Journal

Journal Journal: I just want a relational filesystem...

Re:I just want a relational filesystem...

Yes, I agree, everyone is able and freely does use the genre field (or not) but what of cases where a person doesn't know which genre to assign?

As well, wouldn't it be better if there were tags for multiple or meta genres. Doesn't the depth, and consequently the power, of a system increase as you increase the number of meaningful and useful connections?

I think people forget that if you don't put much thought into it, you really shouldn't expect much intellegence out of it.

Score:2, Insightful)

by 2TecTom (311314) on Thursday June 05, @03:51PM

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