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Comment Re:Relevance of Italian-Canadian? (Score 1) 381

Your broader point is taken, but I think in Marchionne's case, this isn't ridiculous. He was born in Italy, grew up and was educated in Canada, and has worked extensively in Canada and in Italy (the latter including his stint as CEO of FIAT.) His dual nationality is an important part of understanding how he came to be in the position he is in.

Comment Re:danger vs taste (Score 1) 630

A 20 oz coke has 240 calories. Drink one every day, and you’ve consumed 1,680 calories over a week. If those are surplus calories, that is enough to gain about half a pound a week, or about 25 pounds over a year. If you're over-eating in other parts of your meal, you have more reason to hold back on the sugar-sweetened beverages, not less.

Of course I think we can all agree that it's better to be drinking water. But people are allowed some pleasure in life.

Comment Re:From a simpler era (Score 2) 95

Going from memory here, and things may have changed completely in the meantime. If your applet could live in the sandbox, then great. But many applications needed to get out of the sandbox. Remember this was long before cloud storage, so many apps required access to your file system, for example. Or apps might require access to your email client or your contact list. And so you'd sign your applet and have it ask for permission to access outside the sandbox, which in the end made it no different from ActiveX.

I'm sure you'll correct me if I'm remembering wrong. :-)

Comment From a simpler era (Score 3, Insightful) 95

I worked with ActiveX technology close to 15 years ago. It was a much simpler era, where there was little need to worry about platforms other than Windows+IE, and where most of us hadn't really caught on yet to how ruthless the hackers were going to become. And frankly there wasn't a whole lot of alternative for pushing real app functionality from the web in those days. Some people were using Java, which certainly wasn't any more secure, and eventually Flash began to gain traction. So it's not completely hard to understand how we got where we are.

Comment Just a few big wins (Score 1) 471

I'll already be very happy with a device that at a glance, tells me what time it is and when my next appointment is. I would strongly consider buying one just for this alone. In meetings, it comes over far ruder to grab your phone and start tapping away than to quietly glance at a watch.

The fitness tracking features will replace the device I currently use. Big win.

If I can control my podcast and audio book playback without getting my phone out of my pocket, then it will be a win when walking or biking.

I do enough travel that wrist-based navigation while walking through an unfamiliar city is attractive.

And basic home automation like adjusting my wemo lights or thermostat are a big win if it means I don't actually have to have my phone with me while shlepping around in the house.

A lot of people seem excited by notifications. I will likely turn most notifications off. I'm bombarded by enough distractions through the day already.

Comment Considering Windows 8 (Score 1) 418

Personally, I thoroughly dislike Windows 8. Enough that I'm now a Mac user. But I'm seriously considering moving my mother over to it.

I would set up a start screen that shows just the most basic icons: mail, web browser, photo viewer, Word, and that's just about it. I could pin her favourite web sites to the start screen as well.

She really has no need to ever see a desktop. She never runs an application in any mode other than full screen - she has no idea how windows work despite my many, many attempts to teach her. And if you stick to the metro part of Windows 8, the risk of viruses are pretty low. (Although to my knowledge she's never had a virus.)

I'm actually thinking Windows 8 might be a good fit, for exactly the reasons that I hate it for my own use.

Comment Stress (Score 4, Insightful) 230

The Christian Science Monitor had an interesting piece a while back on the stress of remotely participating in combat:

At the end of the day, these pilots get in their cars and drive home to their families, mow the lawn and make dinner, or take their children to soccer practice.

The result is an "existential conflict" in some UAV pilots, says Col. Hernando Ortega, surgeon for the Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Agency. It is "a guilt feeling, perhaps – or a 'Did I make the right decision?' " he explains." 'Was this a friendly fire incident? Was it a good outcome? Was it a bad outcome? Could I have done it better?'"

It's obviously not comparable to driving a LAV in convoy wondering when the next IED is going to detonate. But it appears to be a much tougher job than many of us would think.

Comment We're going to buy a bunch of these (Score 1) 268

We've been looking to convert one of our in-house applications to a touch UI. This allows us to continue using Visual Studio and C#. We don't care about desktop or Metro. Our app will run full-screen, so users won't see anything that's under the hood.

Sure, we could rewrite the whole damn thing for iOS or Android, but why?

Comment Waldorf (Score 1) 690

This is all making me feel pretty good that my son is attending a Waldorf school. They have huge emphasis on creativity, learning by doing, and loads of physical activity. They run counter to the modern focus of ever-earlier literacy and testing, so that kids have time to blow off steam outside, build things, and tell stories.

Judging by the gender balance in my kid's school, a lot of other parents of boys are thinking the same way.

Comment Not likely, I'm afraid (Score 2) 242

Some game developers might support Linux if it comes essentially for free - e.g., because they're developing using Unity, or the game just runs under Wine. But even then, with current adoption numbers of Linux for desktop, the cost of testing, packaging, retailing and supporting is going to be more than revenues for most publishers. Sure, Indie developers are loving Linux, but their costs and expectation of profit are far lower than the big studios.

It's worth looking at what's going on with the Mac. Around a quarter of university students are using Macs these days, yet the Steam store for mac is a pathetic shadow of the store for Windows.

I wouldn't throw away your Windows partition just yet.

Comment Re:Pathetic, very pathetic (Score 2) 396

Photos auto-sync via Skydrive.

If you actually want to use Windows Live.

Ok, you got me there. If you don't want to use Microsoft's services, you indeed don't get access to Microsoft's services.

Email is all cloud-based.

For tiny little miniscule values of all...

Many of us keep photos on our home servers (my /media/Photos tree has 310GB of files) . Many of us keep emails either on the home server, or accessed from POP/IMAP servers using an email client.

If you want to have a subset of the 310GB of photos on your phone, you dump that subset in your Skydrive or Dropbox or put it up on Facebook or Flickr. Re mail - Windows Phone does support pop and imap as well as EAS. If none of those work for you, I'm afraid I'm going to call you an edge case.

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