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Comment Re:eBook pricing (Score 1) 437


When this occurred I went from buying multiple books a month to torrenting them - I haven't bought anything other than a Sci-Fi subscription to a magazine in MONTHS as a result of this bullshit. When they bring back $9.99 pricing I'll start buying, until then - fuck 'em. I can't resell, trade, or give away an e-book like I can paper. I no longer want paper books in my home either - I have too many as it is! grrrr!

Plenty of books on Amazon still have reasonable prices. Just apply these two rules when looking at books:

-Don't buy if price is > $9.99
-Don't buy if price is > cheapest new paper version.

The publishers and authors who abide by those rules are still getting my money, and the ones who don't aren't... but that's no reason to pirate it. If you're not willing to pony up the cash for a book, then don't buy it, and don't steal it. Just do without.

Comment LG phones do this (Score 4, Interesting) 344

I once bought an out-of-contract LG phone, whose screen broke a week after purchase. No, I didn't drop it. Neither AT&T nor LG would repair/replace it, so I went online and searched around and found that this model phone (the Neon) had a notoriously fragile screen, and that no one was able to get repairs for it, so I ended up chucking my useless $80 hunk of plastic in the trash.

After this twenty minutes of googling, I was plagued by LG Neon ads for weeks. Every third or fourth website I visited had an ad trying to sell me the very phone that broke on me. It made me more and more angry every time I saw it. Without the constant reminder of my wasted money, I may have eventually forgotten about it, but now I will never, ever purchase anything by LG again, and I tell people who are looking for a new phone to get something - anything - else.

Comment Re:To google.. (Score 1) 295

What parent fails to mention is that since Japanese verbs are so regular, the language is incredibly resistant to forming new verbs at all. Instead, they borrow the noun and add the verb for "to do" on the end. The fact that "guguru" made it to verb status is due to both luck (it ends in an u) and the sheer force of Google's influence.

Now, my Japanese is far too rusty to figure this one out, but which form would you use to get the meaning "Here, let me Google that for you..." gugusaserareru?

Comment Re:Just randomize the keyboard every time (Score 1) 185

Just a bit of empirical data here: On an iPhone 4 with the oleophobic coating, I traced an android-style unlock pattern with my thumb, and an oil trail was visible on the screen that showed me exactly the pattern I traced.

This makes sense, since oleophobic coatings do not prevent your fingers from secreting oils, nor from depositing those oils on nice glass surfaces. They only make it easier to wipe the oil away. It looks like this study took into account that smudges may be obscured due to phones generally living in pants pockets. I duplicated that part of the experiment as well, and the smudges were still clearly visible after a trip into and out of my pocket, so it's obviously not that much better at repelling oil.

Randomizing the points does sound like it would be a better lock system. You'd memorize a PIN, and have to trace from one number to the next, but the numbers would be in difference places each time. That would make it difficult to guess from either smudges or by glancing at someone entering the password (on the iPhone's lock screen, you can make a good guess at the PIN even if the person is holding the phone so you can't see the screen, just by watching their thumb.)

Comment Re:Ok, Enigma machine ... what else (Score 1) 122

Do any of the museums let you play with the enigma?

They do let you play with one of the Enigmas at Ft. Meade, and even have a pad of notepaper next to write down your plaintext and encoded messages.

What they don't let you play with is the limited run Japanese enigma machine, with kana printed on the keys. Apparently the Germans made a couple for the Japanese, but it didn't really catch on and they were never really used.

Comment Re:The only feasible explanation... (Score 1) 228

If you happen to live near a public university with a good music school, you should be able to at least listen to the music at the library, even if you can't check anything out. You won't be able to rip it, though, since it's likely they'll put it in a player behind the desk and direct you to a listening station. /worked at the music library in college

Comment Re:"Men Who Hate Women" (Score 1) 122

What's more impressive is that many people were happy to stump up $10 for a 100k text file.

How is that more impressive than the amount of people who coughed up $25 for a block of sliced wood pulp?

I always figured people were paying for a good story, regardless of the material upon which it's printed or displayed.

Comment Re:Options for GPS and Mapping? (Score 1) 242

There are little Bluetooth GPS receivers you can get, that pair with software on your laptop/netbook. 3G isn't really necessary if you have a good Map/POI database loaded on the computer. My mom had a setup like this 6 or so years ago, when standalone TomTom-type devices were new and expensive.

However, the difficulty of mounting a netbook on your dash is probably the #1 reason why this didn't catch on. You may have a navigation device, but you still need someone riding shotgun to use the device while you drive.

Comment Re:Licensing (Score 5, Insightful) 230

Your job is to keep his copy of Microsoft Office working, not to tell him that he should switch to OpenOffice.

In my limited workplace experience, if you answer "Fix my software" with "Use this other software instead," you will either be ignored or fired. (I found myself ignored, but instilled with a profound desire to not attempt to be helpful again.)

Comment Re:It does "simply work" (Score 1) 479

If the iPhone 4 is seeing such huge problems why is there a 3-week backlog for new orders?

I've wondered that myself.

After all, if you're getting dropped calls with your new shiny iPhone 4 that you didn't with your old phone, why haven't you returned it?

I have an iPhone 4 myself, and I've talked to 3 other iPhone 4 owners I've happened to meet. None of us have actually had any reception problems. Two of us can reproduce the error, but only when actually trying to - normal usage does not produce it.

If I did have a problem, I would have returned it and gone back to my trusty 3G. However, no problems, no returns.

The only irritating thing about the phone is that every idiot on the street who sees me pull out my phone asks about the reception.

Comment There are no girls on the internet... (Score 5, Insightful) 833

If there are no girls on the internet now, there won't be any ever once this goes into effect.

There's no quicker way to be harassed, stalked, and otherwise massively annoyed by EVERYONE than to reveal that you are in possession of TWO X chromosomes, instead of the internet norm XY configuration.

And the absolute last thing I want is random assholes that I've pissed off on my server to Google my name, of which the first result is the staff listing on my current employer's website, and then start sending nasty emails to my boss.

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