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Comment Linux Distros on my Primary PC (Score 1) 867

I'll avoid discussing what I use at work and on my personal servers, and go over what I have used as my primary OS on my primary desktop/notebook/PC.

1) Redhat - 1997ish - Wasn't my style, so it didn't last long.
2) SuSE - 1998-2001 - Nicely polished; I only stopped using because of new hardware.
3) - dark ages - 2001-2002 - I toyed with lots of distros, but none of them really did what I needed for my hardware. Windows was primary during this timeframe.
4) Gentoo - 2002-present* - Gentoo has been my go-to since '02. There was a period between 2006-2007 where it was seemingly in "meltdown," but those days are past.
*5) KUbuntu - 2006-2007 - I needed a working OS, and Gentoo was it during this timeframe.
*6) Fedora - 2011 - I tested Fedora on my desktop last year for a few months before I abandoned land-locked PCs and went full time to a laptop/netbook.
*7) Arch - 2011 - I also tested Arch on my netbook, but it didn't like the poor little thing for a multitude of reasons.

*Also, as of June of 2012, my primary home PC is a Mac.... So my primary home OS is not, and probably will never again be, a Linux distro. But this isn't the place to discuss that....

Comment FluxBox (Score 5, Informative) 357

Years ago I was a BlackBox user. I've always preferred low-impact WindowManagers and never jumped on the Evolution bandwagon. These days I use BlackBox's primary fork, FluxBox, on both my primary desktop and my "Netbook." The menu format is easy to work with and the memory footprint is negligible.

I don't use a file manager, but I do build most things with GNOME support (if proper), so Nautilus is kinda/sorta there. I'm also not a big panel user - I don't like having tachometers, usage monitors, or any extra stuff filling up my workspace. (I take minimalism to new lows.) Others will have to help you in those respects.

Comment Greetings from The Forbidden Land of Gentoo! (Score 1) 113

Greetings from a user living in "The Forbidden Land of Gentoo!"

While there are times when prebuilt packages (such as this map) are beneficial, I suspect this is not one of them. We, the Gentoo userbase, encourage you to compile your own maps! Only then will they be most accurate and most efficient for your local implementation!

Happy Emerge-ing!

Katyrnyn / Cydonian Monk

(Resident of "The Highly Efficient (yet occasionally broken) Free State of Gentoo" since 2002.)

Comment Please Respect The Profession (Score 1) 484

If you're an engineering student and you "cheat"* to get past material you don't understand, you are disgracing the profession. And you're placing our lives in danger. Your core courses aren't chosen haphazardly, and you're expected to understand and respect that. Do us a favour and do it right or find another profession.

And whether you hold to it or not, there is always the Creed:

* Let's be careful about what we call cheating, though. There is a case to be made for collaboration between students, as most of us don't work in a vacuum and you'll be better prepared for the workforce if you know how to work with others.


"Choose Your Own Adventure" On Your iPhone 135

If you spent a good portion of your childhood reading the classic "Choose Your Own Adventure" books, you'll be glad to know that you can soon waste countless hours at work turning to random pages on your iPhone. Edward Packard, one of the original authors of the series, has helped create an app called U-Ventures which uses special effects to create a story in the traditional Choose Your Own Adventure format. From the article: "The first U-Venture is a sort of a sequel to a classic title, The Cave of Time. In 'Return to the Cave of Time,' the U-Venture, 'you go back in the cave — you don't have a choice on that,' Packard tells NPR's Neal Conan. But from that point on, the reader chooses her own course."

Comment Why Fry WiFiFoFum? (Score 1) 461

I'll admit that even it has been a little rough,
with quirks and blips and little ticks since OS 3.1.
But even now I just say wow at the news that its been snuffed,
'cause as of late it's been so great to Find Wi while on the run.

It was lean and pretty clean as apps are want to be,
and so of use and not obtuse so now I'm slightly mad.
For no bugs I've seen have been so mean to give clear reason to me,
to kick it out and without a doubt this makes my phone so very very sad.

Uneven rules and duplicate tools have no doubt likely doomed,
our favorite apps we bought for laughs with money oh so small.
So let none be shocked and none be fooled to find out that we've zoomed,
on to other phones with other tones and no more garden wall.


Apple Removes Wi-Fi Finders From App Store 461

jasonbrown writes "Apple on Thursday began removing another category of apps from its iPhone App Store. This time, it's not porn, it's Wi-Fi. Apple removed several Wi-Fi apps commonly referred to as stumblers, or apps that seek out available Wi-Fi networks near your location. According to a story on Cult of Mac, apps removed by Apple include WiFi-Where, WiFiFoFum, and yFy Network Finder."

North Korea's Own OS, Red Star 316

klaasb writes "North Korea's self-developed computer operating system, named 'Red Star,' was brought to light for the first time by a Russian satellite broadcaster yesterday. North Korea's top IT experts began developing the Red Star in 2006, but its composition and operation mechanisms were unknown until the internet version of the Russia Today TV program featured the system, citing the blog of a Russian student who goes to the Kim Il-sung University in Pyongyang."

Comment Model Railroading as an "Open" Hobby (Score 5, Informative) 202

The outcome of this case is beneficial both for Open Source Software community and the Model Railroading hobby.

In general model railroading is a very open and diverse hobby. Some are better with structural engineering and carpentry, others with electronics, model building, methods of railroad operation, et cetera. As a community we work together to share and improve our techniques, both to improve ourselves as modelers and to increase our satisfaction from the hobby. There are many well established venues for sharing our knowledge, from regular conventions (NMRA National, Regionals, and plenty of Special Interest Groups), a large number of printed an online periodicals, online communities, and just general "how did you..." questions at any old time.

Unfortunately our openness attracts thieves and greedy sorts who are more interested in making a quick buck than improving the hobby, and manufacturers and other entities attacking hobbyists is nothing new. I imagine this greedy nature is present in all hobbies and walks of life, but it seems to be more common now than when I entered the hobby 20 years ago.

Hopefully the outcome of this case will make others that prey on innocent hobbyists think twice.

Thanks, Bruce, for your well-written summary of the case. I'd mod your article up +1: Insightful if the Internet gave out mod points.

Comment IE6: Only for Enterprise Applications at Work (Score 1) 416

I can honestly say the only time I used IE6 at home was right after a new install to download {insert you choice of replacement browser of the last decade}.

At work, the majority of our internal corporate software is "customized" for IE6, and the teams responsible for it (and even the IT folks) seem to be in no hurry to "upgrade" to something that will break the existing system. What's worse - our remote employees and anyone that needs to access work-related materials from home has to keep a copy of IE6 around. We can use some of the features of the system on other browsers, but some critical items simply don't work. [It's outside of my programming responsibilities, else I would've pushed the issue to "fix" and standardize things ages ago.]

And of course it's a violation of the 11th Commandment to install any other browser on our work boxes. And traffic outside of our intranet is forbidden by the 12th Commandment, except for those in the corporate "priesthood." And a few of us Systems Programmers, like me.....


Colliding Particles Can Make Black Holes After All 269

cremeglace writes with this excerpt from ScienceNOW: "You've heard the controversy. Particle physicists predict the world's new highest-energy atom smasher, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) near Geneva, Switzerland, might create tiny black holes, which they say would be a fantastic discovery. Some doomsayers fear those black holes might gobble up the Earth — physicists say that's impossible — and have petitioned the United Nations to stop the $5.5 billion LHC. Curiously, though, nobody had ever shown that the prevailing theory of gravity, Einstein's theory of general relativity, actually predicts that a black hole can be made this way. Now a computer model shows conclusively for the first time that a particle collision really can make a black hole." That said, they estimate the required energy for creating a black hole this way to be roughly "a quintillion times higher than the LHC's maximum"; though if one of the theories requiring compact extra dimensions is true, the energy could be lower.
PC Games (Games)

The Rise of Originality In MMOs 118

Karen Hertzberg writes "Over the last half decade, gamers have been forced to wander through familiar worlds and universes. Studios have been licensing IPs left and right, grabbing everything from the Wheel of Time to Star Trek. Originality seemed to be a lost art, and although these worlds were fun to adventure in, many didn't hold the same sort of magical spell that original titles like EverQuest or Dark Age of Camelot once enjoyed. But change is coming. Blizzard Entertainment revealed that their next MMO would be an original IP, and this year's E3 lineup featured more brand new games than titles derived from existing worlds. So, why the sudden shift? To answer that question, Ten Ton Hammer's Cody 'Micajah' Bye sent a number of questions to original IP development teams across the world."
PlayStation (Games)

Heavy Rain Gameplay Explained 56

David Cage, writer and director of Quantic Dream's Heavy Rain, has released a lengthy video of an entire level from the game, along with detailed commentary about how the game works. He demonstrates how to operate the UI, showing how contextual menus let you control actions, dialog, and even your character's thoughts, while also showcasing how the game's investigatory system works and even a few fighting-related quick-time events. 1Up recently spoke with Cage about his time in the games industry, including his previous work on Indigo Prophecy. They also did a Heavy Rain preview of their own, and spoke briefly about post-launch plans. The game is due out next year for the PS3.

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