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Comment Re:chief enablers (Score 4, Funny) 85

> I can only presume local law enforcement is either very lax, is complacent ("hey it brings money into our local economy, that's good right?"), or is on the take..

"So, this is quite the operation you have here, isn't it?"

"Yes. Yes it is. Here, here's a little something for your wife. And your children. You are a good man and your family deserves to be well taken care of."

"Thank you. And by the way, you wouldn't be using your operation to be contacting any of the citizens of our fine country, would you?"

"No. Certainly not. Not at all."

"Very well then, carry on."

Comment Not really bought either (Score 1) 147

Given away. It is BS to say the use of personal information as currency is "clearly stated" in the terms of service. The Big Five make ZERO effort to ensure users have read and understand how they are paying for the services they offer for "free". They write long form legalese, and they present a little Web link labelled " as have read the terms of service" next to a checkbox in the sign up and there is no mechanism whatsoever to ensure a person has read it.

It is partly our fault for lying by checking the box without following the link, but companies do the absolute minimum required to inform users. They in fact go out of their way to hide their terms.

It's as if a store leaves their stuff on a shelf, without price tags, but a sign saying "take and enjoy!" with fine print saying "you agree to the terms of the agreement available at the customer service desk" underneath. Then when they get home they discover their bank account cleaned out. They go back to the store and they say sorry you agreed to the terms by taking the stuff. It's not our fault you didn't go to customer service desk to get the 5 page agreement stating we have full access to your bank account and can take whatever you want and that we do not take returns.

The point is they are using their services as bait, and their behaviour wouldn't be tolerated when the currency is cash and the product is tangible. Society does not yet appear to value personal information like cash. People give it freely, corporations leverage it however they please without regard to consequences and governments forcefully take whatever they want to further their agendas. Perhaps one day we will live in a Roddenberry style economy without cash and the new currency will be information and it will be valued and respected accordingly, but we are far from that point right now.

Comment Re: Easy answer (Score 1) 489

I think it is a bit lost on seasoned, technical computer users that if these modern UIs were actually terrible then they wouldn't persist. GNOME 3 is still around because it is actually pretty decent for normal people. It was released before it was complete but in the years since it has become very good.

Microsoft quickly got rid of Bob, and Aero became a flash in the pan. Apple moved past the sometimes awkward, resource intensive photorealistic apps. Some of the modern look is the trend of the day, but the central concepts seem to me to be evolutionary. Maturity coming into computer user interfaces.

Comment Limited colours and flat look are the best though. (Score 2) 489

I actually really like most of Material Design. I often have to design HMI displays (user interfaces for industrial automation). There are good reasons for much of the design:

* colours should be limited and subdued for user interface elements so as to focus attention on content. Bright colours and animation are intended to call attention to important information.

* textures, gradients, transparency and drop shadow effects for the sake of visual flare cause visual confusion and eyestrain. Important elements get lost in the clutter otherwise

* ability to customize is often good but there can be too much of a good thing. If there are 100 "themes" or "skins" and all controls can be moved around by the user on a whim it severely detracts from usability. There is no consistency with the system and it makes it very difficult to train a group of operators when they all can mess with the UI. Also all the code that goes into extreme customzing is bloat.

* Skeuomorphic Design has no business in UI Design. If it was ever a good idea then MS Windows would have fully embraced Microsoft Bob to this day. Making controls look like photorealistic pictures of real life objects just causes frustration unless they behave exactly as the real object does, and are usually more cumbersome than what can be done on a computing device. Skeuomorphism is especially bad when it badly emulates something that is bad to begin with. Using a Blaupunkt stereo from the 1990s is a miserable experience in real life. Who was the idiot who thought we should have an audio player skin that imitates that crap?!

Good riddance to Bob, to Fisher Price gummi Windows XP and glassy Vista and 7. If you have to sit in front of that kind of garbage continuously for 12 hours a day as an operator in a power plant or refinery or whatever it is refreshing to see this "modern" trend. There are some teething pains as designers evolve, such as obscuring too many options or the wrong ones, lacking visual cues as to what is a control and font choices that are form over function as examples, but I for one am very glad designers are "growing up" and dropping the useless toys.

Comment Re: Dilbert predicted this (Score 1) 254

I'm curious...please elaborate on how he is crazy and why you think this happened recently?

* he has ascribed to his outlook on life and ideology since before creating Dilbert...when he learned hypnosis techniques in his early 20s.

* though he never endorsed any candidate, he correctly observed Trump knew what he was doing and that he would become president...and it isn't the only correct call he has made

* in all his writings and interviews I've almost never seen a more reasoned, dispassionate insightful commentary.

Scott Adams is not crazy. He appears to be super smart...as in Einstein and Hawking smart. He even acknowledges that he doesn't know everything and can be an idiot at certain times, which is a sign of very high intelligence.

I suppose it is understandable that you think he is crazy then. Quite often people confuse intelligence with insanity. But I'm still curious as to what makes him appear crazy because to me he seems quite rational.

Of course, that might say something about me too...hmm...

Comment Re: Solar: Not only cheapest. Often a total win. (Score 1) 504

Solar most definitely requires batteries. Super capacitor banks cannot store enough energy to meet household demand for most people in North America during the winter for example. The days are too short. Especially where I live where solar panels can only function six to seven hours a day in December and January.

Comment Re:Windows 10 Hatcheting Sequence (Score 1) 375

awesome.

incredible you figured out all that.

too bad it's not scriptable.

good job. thanks.

The scripting part is interesting in a curious way. To the extent that I must "barehand" everything, that is the extent to which I am forced to actually look at what's been done, what's been left, what's been destroyed, and as time goes on, I discover that this stuff changes in ways both obvious and subtle. So I guess it's like exercise. Who the fuck likes doing pushups? Nobody. But they're good for you, and if you want to stay healthy into your elder years, you'll do what's good for you.

So I hatchet away, and every single time it's a weency bit different, and I stay in shape that way.

I certainly do not recommend that as a method for everybody, or even anybody, but for me, yeah, it works out pretty good in the end.

Comment Re:Windows 10 Hatcheting Sequence (Score 1) 375

I'm curious, did you use to make this many changes to previous versions of Windows or it's the first time you've had to make many changes to get a system like you like it?

I've always had multiple test boxes laying around, with multiple hard drives to swap back and forth, and tearing Windows up, just to see what would happen, has always been kind of fun.

That said, it's the goddamned telemetry and all the rest of it that really got me going, and just as soon as I installed my first copy of 10 a year ago, I was very interested in first discovering, and then attacking, and then checking to see if the patient was still breathing or not.

The miscellaneous stuff like the Taskbar, and Desktop Icons, and all of that end of it is stuff I've been doing for a long time, attempting to trim away the bullshit and get the machine more responsive. Windows 8 was my first foray into nuking tiles and forcing a "normal" look to things, but 10 is a whole different level of crap to deal with.

So part of the answer is yes, and part of the answer is no.

Comment Windows 10 Hatcheting Sequence (Score 1) 375

Below, the contents of my own personal procedure manual for dealing with a new Win10 machine, with a very strong emphasis on disrupting/removing the spying apparatus. A lot of stuff gets removed. This has been done on numerous machines and so far no failures, no lockups, no blue screens. Some machines are slightly different, some will not have every listed item, some may have a few "extras." The machines seem to run noticeably faster following the hatchetings, and all of them, to date, remain tack sharp, rock solid, and quite nimble. No warranty is provided, express or implied.


Stardock Start10

Revo existing AV program

Reset folder view options including "date created"

Install Unlocker & TakeOwnership

Taskbar properties

Classic Personalize

Screensaver & power settings

Defender to do not send

Desktop icons include & view small icons

Computer, properties, advanced settings, best performance (Leave drop shadows, smooth screen fonts, view thumbnails)

systeminfo verify 10586 or higher.

Windows Update, if not.

ToggleTweaker.bat 12 to kill Cortana (says it kills Edge [ver3.3], but it does not).

IF CORTANA NOT DEAD C:\Windows\SystemApps\Cortana\SearchUI.exe kill with TakeOwnership and/or Unlocker (assume both, or as-required, if only one or none mentioned from here on)

Manual Directory Pass Destroy C:\Windows\SystemApps\ TakeOwnership\Unlocker killkillkill one at a time, starting with Cortana, which takes the longest LEAVE SHELLEXPERIENCEHOST INTACT

Manual Directory Pass Destroy C:\Users\MainUser\AppData\Local\MicrosoftEdge; C:\Users\MainUser\AppData\Local\Packages\ for special destructive attention to apps BUT LEAVE WINDOWS.IMMERSIVECONTROLPANEL & SHELLEXPERIENCEHOST ALONE! or Windows Update might not work; C:\Users\MainUser\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\PRICache

Manual Directory Pass Destroy Unlocker C:\Users\All Users\Package Cache; C:\Users\All Users\Microsoft OneDrive

Manual Directory Pass Destroy TakeOwnership C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\AppRepository\ (LEAVE IMMERSIVECONTROLPANEL, SHELLEXPERIENCEHOST, RUNTIMES, STATEREPOSITORY ALONE!)

Manual Directory Pass Destroy TakeOwnership C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\AppRepository\PACKAGES be careful, watch out, dead "Settings" & "Notifications" (LEAVE IMMERSIVECONTROLPANEL & SHELLEXPERIENCEHOST ALONE!)

Manual Directory Pass Destroy C:\Program Files(x86)\Windows Mail

Manual Directory Pass Destroy C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office15\GROOVEEX.DLL; OCHelper.dll; ONBttnIE.dll; ONBttnIELinkedNotes.dll

Manual Directory Pass Destroy C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office15\GROOVEEX.DLL; OCHelper.dll; ONBttnIE.dll; ONBttnIELinkedNotes.dll

Manual Directory Pass Destroy C:\Program Files\Windows Mail; C:\Program Files\WindowsApps (leave VC & .Net runtimes, there IS NO IMMERSIVECONTROLPANEL OR SHELLEXPERIENCEHOST)

Manual Directory Pass Destroy C:\Windows\MiracastView\

DWS_Lite as administrator, enable professional mode - delete one drive - delete all metro apps - smash everything except defender (mind the checkbox)

Reboot

bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy legacy (via cmd as administrator)

w10privacy.exe (via cmd as administrator)(be patient, it'll come)

Reboot

OOShutUpWindows10 as administrator

Verify Defender still alive, if not:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE_\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows Defender - DWORD (32bit) DisableAntiSpyware needs to be set with a Value of 0 - DWORD (32bit) DisableAntiVirus needs to be set with a Value of 0 -

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE_\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows Defender
DWORD (32bit) DisableAntiSpyware needs to be set with a Value of 0

Reboot

win10-unfuck-master data-harvesting-services-removal.bat - gpedit.msc-screenshots (NOTE TO SLASHDOT USERS: no screenshots in this post)

Reboot

Settings, throw all switches to privacy settings and check to see which Apps may have survived while you're doing it

Services disabled: Auto Time Zone Client License Service (disrupts Store, where can I turn this off?) Connected User Experiences and Telemetry Data Collection Publishing Service (disrupts cloud) Delivery Optimization dmwappushservice Downloaded Maps Manager Geolocation Service Microsoft (R) Diagnostics Hub Program Compatibility Assistant Service Remote Desktop Services Remote Registry Retail Demo Secondary Logon Superfetch (if svchost is hogging memory and check shows this as the culprit) Themes Windows Biometric Service Windows Error Reporting Windows License Manager Service (disrupts Store, where can I turn this off?) Windows Media Player Network Sharing Windows Store Service (WSService, where can I turn this off?)

Initiate Ninite Chrome, Firefox, 7zip, TeamViewer, CDburnerXP, VLC, All Runtimes, Irfan, qBittorrent, Google Earth

Revo full decrappification - TaskManager killings if machine sluggish

Manual Directory Pass Destroy crud

Finish/adjust/trim TT&V all ninite installations

Clean Start Menu

Sysinternals autoruns.exe killkillkill right-click, go to image, unlocker, destroy

Reboot

File associations TT&V full WhiteDoom (NOTE TO SLASHDOT USERS: You do not possess The White Thumbdrive Of Doom) pass for tweaks & trim

Java Suppress Sponsor Offers if required

Network/Printers

Printers/Peripherals

Comment My own experience with murdering this shit. (Score 1) 387

Below, my own text file of procedures which I use to denature both upgraded and new installations of Win10 on the machines I deal with. It's pretty drastic, but it's been working well, and the miserable goddamned Apps seem to not come back, or at least not all at once, which allows me to periodically check on: C:\Windows\SystemApps\, C:\Users\MainUser\AppData\Local\Packages, C:\Program Files\WindowsApps, C:\Users\All Users\Package Cache for any .cabs or whatever that may have insinuated itself back into the system and kill them in their sleep, too.

What follows is my own deal, and I'm not hear to discuss the minutia of what program I should use Ninite for or any of the rest of that OCD bullshit. Use whatever the hell you want to. You're an adult. I am too. Go away and leave me alone with that kind of crap, ok?

What follows is also a bit short-hand-y and since this is Slashdot, I presume you can figure it out, and I'm not here to hold you by the hand, either. See above re: You're an adult.

Ok, on with the show.

Well, maybe not. Slashdot tells me I have too few characters per line. Lovely. Just fucking lovely. Ok I shall reformat. Any groups of multiple dashes can be presumed to be double line breaks, ok?

Stardock Start10 ---------- Revo existing AV program ----------Reset folder view options including "date created" ---------- Taskbar properties ---------- Classic Personalize ---------- Screensaver & power settings ---------- Copy Win10 folder to desktop ---------- Defender to do not send ---------- Desktop icons include & view small icons ----------Computer, properties, advanced settings, best performance (Leave drop shadows, smooth screen fonts, view thumbnails ---------- systeminfo verify 10586 ---------- Windows Update ---------- DWS_Lite as administrator, enable professional mode - delete one drive - delete all metro apps - smash everything except defender (mind the checkbox)

Reboot

bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy legacy (via superCMD)

psexec w10privacy.exe (via superCMD inside Win10 directory)(be patient, it'll come)

Reboot

ToggleTweaker.bat

Reboot

Install Unlocker

C:\Windows\SystemApps\Cortana\SearchUI.exe kill with Unlocker

Reboot

OOShutUpWindows10 as administrator

Verify Defender still alive, if not:
\\\
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE_\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows Defender
DWORD (32bit) DisableAntiSpyware needs to be set with a Value of 0
DWORD (32bit) DisableAntiVirus needs to be set with a Value of 0
\\\
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE_\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows Defender
DWORD (32bit) DisableAntiSpyware needs to be set with a Value of 0

C:\Windows\SystemApps\ Unlocker killkillkill one at a time, starting with Cortana, which takes the longest

Reboot

Settings, throw all switches to privacy settings and check to see which Apps may have survived while you're doing it

Initiate Ninite Chrome, Firefox, 7zip, TeamViewer, CDburnerXP, VLC, All Runtimes, Irfan, qBittorrent, Google Earth

Revo full decrappification - TaskManager killings if machine sluggish

Manual Directory Pass for shitty programs leftovers search and destroy: Unlocker C:\Users\MainUser\AppData\Local\Packages for special destructive attention to apps, Unlocker C:\Program Files\WindowsApps (sometimes takes forever), Unlocker C:\Users\All Users\Package Cache

Finish/adjust/trim TT&V all ninite installations

Clean Start Menu

Sysinternals autoruns.exe killkillkill right-click, go to image, Unlocker, destroy: C:\Program Files (x86 & x64)\Microsoft Office\Office15\GROOVEEX.DLL all WinMail shit

Reboot

File associations TT&V full WhiteDoom pass for tweaks & trim

Java Suppress Sponsor Offers

Network/Printers

Printers/Peripherals

Go surfing to try to wash all the slime off of you.

Some of the directories marked for destruction look pretty scary, but so far, the only thing that happens when this crap is removed is that the machine runs faster.

I've learned a surprising amount of useful stuff, sifting through the rubbish on Slashdot over the years, and the above constitutes yet another attempt to give a little something back, now and again, when time and circumstance permit.

Caveat Leecher.

Comment Re: Just what we need to do... (Score 3, Informative) 80

China did not eliminate its one child policy because it wanted more population growth. It has in fact been relaxing it for years and did away with it entirely because of the social problems it causes:

* in traditional Chinese culture male offspring are highly valued and when allowed only one child many couples abort female fetuses. In rare but all too numerous cases newborn girls have even been killed just after birth. The result is that there are 10s of millions more men in China than women now. The one child policy has been relaxed for years to allow women to have a second child if their first was female to help balance the population. This has virtually eliminated infanticide but has been slow in re balancing population.

* measures to enforce one child policy have been very cruel, such as the common policy of denying anaesthetic to women in labour with their second child and clawback of social assistance and forced sterilisation of women without consent immediately after the birth of a child.

* the significantly greater number of young men to young women has been attributed to problems with sex crimes from human trafficking to gang rapes, though much of the evidence is anecdotal

* there are now a couple of generations of people in China raised as only children. These children have been doted upon and spoiled rotten by parents and grandparents all their lives, turning many of them into entitled "little emperors". The lack of empathy towards others and lack of respect towards elders has been unsettling to older Chinese where those traits are very important in traditional culture. It has led to institutionalisation of seniors that was almost unheard of as well as exploitation of workers and in extreme, occasional cases, incidents such as people ignoring a toddler run over by a car dying in the street while everyone goes on about their business.

Anyways population is self limiting as societies develop and direct population control has been shown to backfire. Allowing those with the means and desire to have fertility treatments to conceive is probably a net benefit to society on the whole when properly regulated. At least these parents really want to be parents and have the means and the drive to be good parents.

Comment So, emacs is like systemd then... (Score 1) 303

...except systemd is less monolithic since it is actually a suite of separate binaries that each do specific things where everything emacs does relies on the central interpreter ;-)

Really though this "UNIX way" dogma is tired and old and irrelevant on all modern computing systems. Yes the philosophy has its merits but it was abandoned many years ago. XOrg gave up on it ages ago. Android and MacOS have UNIX/Linux underpinnings and next to nothing that makes them the OSes they are have anything to do with the UNIX way.

I will get off this here lawn now before that old guy with the grey neckbeard finishes piping his log files 15 ways through cat/awk/sed and notices my presence. I guess he didn't hear me arrive over the clacking of his model M and he cant focus his eyes that far after so much close work in front of his amber monitor ;-)

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