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Comment Sad to see it go (Score 4, Interesting) 75

It was a good environment for my kids to explore, lots of fun activities and the chat was *strictly* controlled, with only approved words and phrases available for use. May not suit an older kid, but for the 6 yro who's just learning the ropes, it was one place I could let him explore without fear.

Comment Re:You want switches and knobs? (Score 1) 430

Actually, I do want knobs and switches, for some tasks. Have you ever tried to use siri or the likes while driving? It requires too much cognitive "brainpower", distracting from the real task at hand (driving).

Besides, which is easier: Reach out and twist a round know a little, or say "ok car! lower the temperature by 10 degrees".

Dunno, I still think interfaces should strike a balance between physical and virtual, with the most-used stuff being physical. You would not want to use a touchscreen as your main keyboard at work, would you?

Comment Awful dashboard (Score 1) 430

Oh crap! That launch video was the first I saw of this car, and I was ok up until the interior was shown. An empty dashboard and a single gigantic touchscreen? In what world is that acceptable?

It is ok to project maps and whatnot, but a *driver* needs to focus on the road, so frequently used controls, like A/C, fan speed, vents, sound volume, etc all need to be physical, so you can reach out and touch without having to focus your eyes in the process.

With such bad interior ergonomics, I'm not putting any money down for this....

Comment Re:It was a slippery slope ... (Score 1) 242

Awesome list :-)

> Having to pull the choke every time you turn off the engine or risk not being able to start it again? No thanks.
(never quite understood how that worked, I thought it was used for *starting* it, interesting)

> All the fun-filled mornings spent with the family pushing your car until it started? No thanks.
(check, not that often, but been there)

> Brakes on your car suddenly failing for no reason when you're going down the highway? (yes this actually happened to me) No thanks.
(scary, never faced that one)

> Bursting radiators, torn up drive belts, worn clutch discs? I think I'll pass on those as well.
(check, more than once)

> And not to mention if you got in an accident even at relatively low speed you were literally dead meat.
(check, twice; low speed, with 3-point seatbelt on, still heavily bruised)

What to add there? Frequent tire punctures? Having to "de-carb" your carburator at least every 6 months? Frequent brunt light bulbs?

Submission + - Sourceforge re-packaging old software with adware

Koyaanisqatsi writes: As previously reported here, the Windows installer for the popular GIMP image editing software has been bundled with additional commercial software. What seems most disturbing is that apparently Sourceforge is making these changes to a number of other less-active packages in their site, according to reporting by Ars.

Note: SourceForge and Slashdot share a corporate parent.

Comment Hi speed chase, hum? (Score 3, Insightful) 443

So, in who's interest is it that the police perform these "for show" stunts?

Wouldn't it be much better to deploy a helicopter, drone or other means of tracking the car from a distance, and not risk killing several bystanders in a crash? This time only the bad guy died, but even him did not deserve capital punishment for a car jack ...

Comment Re:I'm going to have an excellent seat (Score 1) 146

Very nice indeed! But out of curiosity, what makes the eclipse an interesting moment to do this (which I suppose is intended for exact distance measurements), as opposed to say, any new moon? I don't mean this out of spite, it is really my curiosity kicking in, can you ask your wife what data is this intended to gather and to what end?

Comment Re:Breathtaking (Score 2) 47

This is a very interesting moment in time. At this rate of development, it is quite possible that in a decade or two we'd have full spectrographic analysis of the atmospheres of a handful of words. This might not be the ones best suited to sustain life, but we might get to those as well. Can't wait!

Comment Re:144KWh on my last bill (Score 1) 327

Well, different from a central HVAC, where you set the thermostat and forget, with individual units I make a decision when to turn on and in which rooms. In the end, I only use cooling when temp gets higher than 26C (79F), and only on rooms being used, taking care to close doors. I calculate in a given week I have a total of about 20 hours of AC running, give it or take it.

And only during summer, winters are mild enough that no heating is needed (it would be electric if needed, not propane or oil)

Comment 144KWh on my last bill (Score 1) 327

Weather turning warmer here in the south hemisphere, so there's more A/C. Should peak at some 200KWh at the height of summer.

And I telecommute, so I'm at home most of the time, but usually only one room has the A/C turned on (it's not central, but very efficient inverter split units on each important room)

Other costs are the refrigerator, lighting, TV gear, etc.

Comment Hanselman: not (yet) an artificial pancreas (Score 1) 119

From Scott Hanselman, who actually depends on this sort of stuff to stay alive:

"It's WAY too early to call this Insulin Pump an Artificial Pancreas"

Read the article, it is very interesting and he makes some very compelling arguments as to why this is a bit too much hype...

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