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Comment Slashdot: Home for nerds, community that matters (Score 4, Insightful) 546

A few years ago (before the last buyout) /. was my main technical news source. I came primarily for the community, then for the content, and lastly for some humor at the polls. No, not reporting on current political campaign polls, although I do remember watching the politics section go live.

I want to share a little bit of my story: When I was a wee lad not yet in highschool my family got dial-up. I was so excited! The internet was new and so amazing. It was a very short time until I came across slashdot and for some reason I got hooked. I think it was the engineering humor and conversation (or perhaps jokes about a gritty Natalie Portman), but something about it stuck. This site tremendously sparked and influenced my love of technology. I'm now a successful fully-employed member of society (in an IT field no less!) and I can honestly blame ./ culture for much of my development.

I've learned services, like friends, come and go. I was active in, and then watched, Digg dissapear. I saw some of the glimmer of Kuroshin. I've piddled around in Reddit. Slashdot was always in the back there though, if sometimes only because of distantly fond memories.

I watched as certain strategic decisions ticked the "she's not going to make it jim" flag in my mind and I began to write Slashdot off. Recently however there is a new light behind the community. There is a new vibrancy. It's because you who are in charge are like us once again (one of us, one of us!). You understand that this isn't about the monies, it isn't about pageviews and numbers, it's about technologists by day who can take a few minutes to just be nerds and talk and discuss with each other. It's about having slashdot as hobby, an interest, someplace where I can hang up the coat and hang out for a while. You've started to remember that and it is showing. We, the community, see it. I feel at home here once again.

Keep up the good work - here's to hoping ./ and it's community can be a home for the geeks, the nerds, the techies and all those inspiring to be. Thanks guys, she's looking good again!


Submission + - Texting Drivers Take Eyes Off Road 5s on Avg

An anonymous reader writes: More than 5000 people die each year as a result of being distracted while driving, and a new study indicates that teens and cell phones make for the most volatile combination.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that of all drivers under 20 involved in fatal crashes, 16 percent were distracted — the highest proportion of any age group.

"Shockingly, texting drivers took their eyes off the road for each text an average of 4.6 seconds — which at 55 mph, means they were driving the length of a football field without looking," said David Hosansky,

Comment Re:Lets break it down (Score 1) 470

I've never thought of basically running multiple local sessions and just having simple hooks to switch between them. You have found a stumbling point of this implementation: no dragging of windows/apps between sessions. Still, it is a solid idea, and I'm always glad to be proven wrong.

The powershell is very, erm, powerful. Much closer to the CLI on other OSes (read: the way a cli should work). The best small app builder that is easy to learn that I have found is called AutoIt (or the derivative AutoHotKey). Both allow completing tasks from quick little hotkey macros up to building simple GUIs in a BASIC-esque form. Too much to hope for something like either of these little beauties to come standard though.

Comment Re:Lets break it down (Score 1) 470

Right, that is a little confusing. Although a different way has already been pointed out to me, and my understanding has grown, let me try and explain what I meant at the time. It is technically unfeasible for Microsoft to have a native implementation of a virtual-desktop like app because of the way windows are composted or something. I actually read it on a blog on msdn after being linked from a slashdot comment. This is the rationale behind the first quote

It appears that things have changed since win7, and as Osty pointed out up above, it would probably be rather trivial to hook into the fast-user switching (minus the actual user switching) to have virtual desktops. If so, that would be nice!

I've tried some of the third-party programs, and although they do provide a set of virtual desktops, they are rather buggy. Some apps work perfectly, some don't play nice at all. Last time I tried, admittedly a while ago, stuff that closes to the systray would often break the implementation. That was my reasoning for the second quote. Basically I was saying that it is hard to have a virtual-desktop experience on windows that is really polished and would run equivalent to virtual desktops on linux or what have you.

Comment Lets break it down (Score 5, Insightful) 470

I agree with number 1 (Bring back the start button) if only for consistencies sake. Windows has had a start button for years and years, and most graphical operating systems have some a main system button in one form or another. Why fix it if it ain't broken? (An argument that could probably be applied liberally to 8's new GUI...)

Number 2: Blu-ray support would be nice, but I actually like how they have removed most of the optical media licensing crap to the media/media pro packs (or whatever they are called). By the time 8 is out, I would bet a majority of consumer-grade computing devices won't have an optical drive. Blu-ray should be supported in the media pack, but I have no qualms if it isn't in the default stack of cards.

As for number 3 (One Click Optical Drive Sharing), I think this might be the most valid criticisms on the list, mainly for the same reasons stated above: optical drives are going away. I currently have one optical drive in the house and have it shared via samba and few other ways, but this is a read-only approach.

Number 4 (Drag to open) doesn't seem like a very harsh criticism, it feels more like list padding. I don't use drag and drop for just about anything after having found the keyboard is much faster though, so I should recuse myself from commenting on this one.

As far as Virtual Desktops go (Number 5), it is technically unfeasible, for reasons I don't quite remember. Something to do with the way Windows handles windows which has escaped me for the moment. Nevertheless, there are third party applications of varying quality that already implement this, to a varying degree.

Bring back visualbasic? (Number 6) No. Just no. That thing was a mess. Friends don't let friends script VB, drunk or otherwise.

Number 7: Fonts preview app: I have the win8 consumer preview running in vmware right now, and the font folder looks pretty much untouched from win7. It still lets you preview installed fonts. More list-padding?

I've got an easy fix for 8 (Dual-pane explorer). Use two explorer windows, one on the right one on the left. Or feel free to use something like Total Commander or its variants. They still make those, right?

As for 9, I'm sure Microsoft is going to give a little polish to the out-of-box-experience. Just cause the alpha doesn't have it, doesn't mean it won't be there.

10 is valid. I don't like where the shutdown button lives on win8. Move it up one level, just so that it is a little easier to find. I don't like to hunt and peck for a basic system function.

Comment Re:Big deal (Score 0) 458

Disclaimer: I am a member of the LDS Church, but I do know LDS (Mormon) theology somewhat. Suicide isn't considered an "unforgivable sin". The official policy is to assume that a suicide victim's soul isn't damned to hell or any of that nonsense. Quite a few years back we had a suicide in our immediate family, and although sad and shocking, the person was buried in their temple clothes. What that means is that it was assumed that they were (for a lack of a better phrase) sick in the head and made a bad judgment, and therefore either forgiven or simply not at fault. I firmly believe that person is enjoying all the benefits that heaven has to offer!

Comment Re:That's news to me... (Score 1) 374

It's a statement talking about the illegal occupation and claim on the City of Jerusalem by the Zionist state. I am in total agreement with you about being sick of the whole thing but a little investigation shows just how badly treated the Palestinians have been by the Israeli's(and the world). The first major problem is the claim that Israel is theirs because God gave it to them. Google the term 'Greater Israel' and you will see what I mean(there's a reason Israel want all Hezbollah weapons out of the south of lebanon up to the Litani river). This is a link to some facts on the ground. Iran has never invaded anyone in its short history. Ahmadinejad has never outright denied the holocaust occurred as the western media like to portray all the time. he has called for studies to see whether it was just as bad as claimed. I am not saying here that it wasn't bad but there are several very glaring oddities in the story that do not appear to stand up to the test. It's not a fight over who's religion is right it is a fight over who's land it is. Imagine if you lived for centuries on the same land as your ancestors and then one day men with guns throw you out on the street because God said it was the right thing to do. I have been to Israel and believe me if you are a Goy you are a second-class human being(although some teachings class you as a beast on two legs). here's an attitude amongst the orthodox that is quite prevalent but rarely stated so blatantly.

Comment Re:Licensed properties are always problematic (Score 1) 124

That wasn't a problem for the 25th Anniversary game. It was very much in the style of the TV series, split into several episodes where each one involved the same basic story; The Enterprise finds something, Kirk and the senior crew go somewhere dangerous, work out how to solve the problem of the day, then beam back, make some quips and warp away.

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