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Comment Null Island, Pacific style (Score 1) 91

A long time ago I was working with GPS applications and their internal representation of longitude meant our Null Island was in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, 0 north, 180 west.

We figured out the conventions of the mapping application we were using (no Google Maps yet, and the documentation was vague) by trial and error. Our first attempts to plot GPS fixes from a drive along a local freeway showed a blank area with no freeway, nor much of anything else. We found that we were drawing a map centred on 49 degrees north (correct) but 123 degrees east, out in the middle of nowhere near the border between China, Mongolia and Russia. Nearest town Harbin, China...

...laura

Comment What else is new? (Score 3, Insightful) 170

Step 1: Apple introduced the iPad and everybody was desperate to get one because it was the trendy item to have.

Step 2: people started figuring out what they could do with a handy portable computer.

Step 3: everybody who had a use for a tablet had one and the sales dropped off to replacement level.

Any remotely interesting new product is going to grow at unsustainable levels until the market is saturated. Then the growth stops.

...laura

Comment My TV is a TV (Score 1) 507

I bought my TV to be a TV. I measured the space it needed to fit in, then looked at candidates at the store and picked the one that looked best. It has an ATSC tuner and various inputs with various things (Apple TV, Roku, DVD player) plugged in to them.

My Apple TV and Roku do all the smart TV stuff I've ever wanted to do. I've never seen a standalone smart TV that was worth the money.

...laura

Comment Not the point (Score 4, Interesting) 209

The MacBook already has mediocre battery life, and its case is pretty much solid battery except for the tiny logic board.

So ASUS comes along, shrinks the case and puts in bigger and more power hungry CPU / RAM / SSD plus extra components like the mini CPU fan and Thunderbolt controller. Guess what's gonna give?

It sounds like the original MacBook Air; great on paper but in reality a bunch of overpowered components packed in too little space, leading to crappy battery life, overheating and throttling.

I realize everyone wants ultra-mobile devices these days, but if you're tethered to a charger it's not so mobile anymore, is it?

Comment $90K? (Score 5, Funny) 266

60,000 employees, a $7.5B budget, and all they have to show for it is $90K in graft?

If they privatized that train wreck of a federal agency into a train wreck of a corporation, their top brass would be getting millions in unearned bonuses, millions more in golden parachutes, and that's not even counting the embezzlement.

Government inefficiency at it's worst.

Comment Worth noting... (Score 1) 67

Family plans usually have a "one household" restriction in their terms and conditions, but here Spotify didn't put any requirements on where or who the...

primary account holder and up to five (5) subsidiary accounts (“sub-accounts”)

...need to be.

The conspiracy theorist in me says it was intentional, since Spotify and Apple Music know they could make way more money if they cut their subscription rates—and have repeatedly tried to do so—but the labels are adamant about a $10/mo minimum. This could be a clever end-run around their contractual obligations.

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