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Comment And so it has come to this (Score 4, Insightful) 246

It's been fun, it really has. Over the years as a lurker, as AC and then eventually as a lowly 6-digiter I have seen tons of insight, reasoned debate and out-and-out flame wars. There's been +5 Funny and -1 Troll and everything in between. And despite all of the bitching, there really was quite a bit of news for nerds and stuff that mattered.

Up until the last couple of months, when it all seems to have gone down the pan at warp factor nine. On this wonderful internet of ours things come and things go. Now is clearly the time for the venerable /. to go and I will help it on its way, albeit with a heavy heart.

So long, slashdot!

Red Hat Software

Submission + - Alan Cox On Fedora 18: "The Worst Red Hat Distro", Switches To Ubuntu (phoronix.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Linux kernel developer veteran Alan Cox has lashed out at Red Hat's recent release of Fedora 18. Cox posted comments to his Google+ page saying "Fedora 18 seems to be the worst Red Hat distro I've ever seen." He encountered numerous problems with Fedora 18 and then decided to switch to Ubuntu.

Comment Episodic construction (Score 4, Insightful) 170

I see (for all its good points) that the revival edition suffers from its episodic format. We have discrete 45-minute programmes (occasionally 2-parters) within a series which often has a loose story arc. Great for the MTV generation, perhaps, but for those of us who were brought up on classic DW, a bit of a let-down.

Back in the day we had each series consisting of (usually) six stories spread over sets of 4 episodes many of which ended on a cliff-hanger. This was great drama, well and tightly scripted. The special effects may seem crude in hindsight but they were cutting-edge then and kitcsh now. Most importantly there was a story and key to this was the Doctor who was on the side of the moral good. The zenith of the whole canon was surely the Key to Time series which gave a classic quest storyline over the arc with 6 quintessential plots for each part of the key and a reveal of superb quality. I doubt we'll ever see its like again, but I dearly hope the beeb will prove me wrong.

In essence, a return to a medium-length plot within a series-long story would be best, but I fear those in control won't countenance it.

Comment Re:"the year of the Linux desktop"? Make them stop (Score 2) 163

OK, here's the news:

1. Nobody really uses SUSE anymore. Even Slackware beats the pants off it for usability. Give SUSE the heave-ho and you're halfway to paradise. *

2. Java is 100% unnecessary for most of the productive tasks for which you will use a computer. Just bin it. If anything you think you want to run requires java, bin that too and just use a non-java equivalent. Java is very useful for mobile phones and old-style web apps, but nothing on the desktop since 2004.

3. This is the choir here. Nobody in this audience really cares whether 2012 is the year of the Linux desktop or not. The linux desktop is great: we know that and we use it. Whether everybody else uses it or not is largely irrelevant to us.

4. GNOME 3 sucks - this is widely established. The good news is that you run Linux, so you have your choice of XFCE, LXDE, Enlightenment, AfterStep, Ratpoison, Fluxbox, etc. Just run whichever window manager you want.

5. If your MUA won't export to mbox and/or maildir, why are you using it? Question 1 for any data-critical apps is always "How do I get my data out of it?". If an app cannot answer that, don't use it.

*OK, that one may be slightly contentious, but TBH, I've never (and I mean in since kernel 1.0) heard any convincing argument regarding why anyone should run SUSE over another distro. Counter-arguments happily invited.

Comment Re:A good idea, but poor execution? (Score 1) 84

In real life, you can choose to show your ID card to someone to prove who you are, but there is no way to do something like this over the Internet.

Easy - there is a one-time enrollment whereby the government signs your PGP key having proven your identity by one of the other robust means already in operation. That sig can always be verified by anyone who needs to. Job done.

Comment Re:Legacy of NeXT's InterfaceBuilder.app? (Score 2) 187

Like you, the NeXTs introduced me to OOP and OOD. It was a whole new way of coding and allowed me to produce finished and polished apps in record time back then. The resultant code may only have run on NeXTs but that wasn't really the point at the time. I've not used a dev system since which had the ease of use or rapid development cycle.

These days the code I write is generally more portable, more efficient and the source is more maintainable. But it takes a lot longer to produce (even with all the frameworks and IDEs and what have you). Therein lies the rub. Apple, Microsoft and everyone else who wants to tempt the next generation of developers into their walled gardens will need to do at least as good a job as SJ did at NeXT to grab them and keep them. I doubt it will happen and in the grand scheme of things that's probably a good result for all of us.

Comment Re:Consistency in action (Score 1) 526

It speaks volumes for how utterly shit the other lot are that this bunch are the better option.

Nobody actually wants a homeopath in charge of the NHS, but if the alternative means giving Ed Balls another five years of driving the economy into a brick wall we'll take our chances with Hunt. It will be very illuminating to see which path he opts for should he or a member of his family fall seriously ill.

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