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Comment Re:Except it probably saves on data usage (Score 1) 59

If you're running a phone's GPS then *that* in particular will chew through batteries like nobody's business. I had a Galaxy Note 4 completely drain a 10,000MaH battery-based phone charger running GPS for about 7 hours (was watching my progress in a navigation app during a bus trip) At my destination, the phone was at almost full charge, the charger it was hooked to was almost completely flatlined.

---PCJ

Comment Re:Play the hack instead (Score 1) 157

I never could get the timing right on parachuting into the cliff hole under the tree on Raiders.

Probably too late to offer this, but...

I seem to recall that you had to hit the branches under the leaf cluster with the canopy of the parachute. The game would then pull the player-character diagonally down the tree trunk and into the hole.

Then you had to avoid touching the "thieves" running back and forth across the next screen as you made your way to your objective on the bottom.

---PCJ

Comment Re:Picture is misleading, so is affected system de (Score 1) 74

SP2 owner here.

When I got my recall notice (via Amazon, where I bought it), my first thought was "good thing I don't keep mine plugged in all the time" (it sees very light usage, and the battery holds up nicely for weeks on end while powered down)

Then I clicked on the actual notice and was puzzled for a bit. The charger pictured in the notice didn't look anything like the one that came with my Surface. Mine was a compact wall wart with folding prongs. More searching led me to a listing for a Surface 24-watt charger that looked just like the one packed with my SP2, and taking another look at the logo on mine, it says "Surface RT". I'd been using the thing on-and-off for almost a year and never noticed. Turns out the RT and Pro could use each other's chargers.

Anyone else get an RT charger bundled with their Surface Pro 2 or 3?

---PCJ

Comment Re:I still use Flash 4 (Score 1) 229

I typically use Inkscape for vector drawings, but I did install an old copy of Flash 4 for the purpose of playing with (Newgrounds-esque) animation. I wasn't expecting it to run under Win7, but it did...after complaining that it couldn't update the Registry, but ran without incident after that.

I wonder if using the compatibility options on the EXE will fix the error dialog, but I'll live with it for now
(unless someone does something completely off-the wall bonkers and grafts an animation module onto Inkscape, or creates a Flash work-alike with Inkscape's drawing tools*)

---PCJ

*(because while Vectorian Giotto intends to be a Flash work-alike and will output SWF, you need acute masochistic tendencies to actually get to the point of making an animation with it)

Comment Re:Plate boundary (Score 1) 465

You're thinking of the Aleutian Trench. That's a long ways from the Bering Strait. Any plate-boundary crossing would occur on land in NE Russia and be across a strike-slip fault much like the San Andreas, not a subduction zone.

(aside) Last time I heard of this scheme, it was to be a tunnel, proposed to run under the Strait between the Diomede Islands, and it was to be exclusively for rail (conventional--not high-speed).

Need to send vehicles across? Put 'em on the train. No sense building gas stations out in the middle of nowhere, and a tunnel is both less maintenance-intensive and less prone to severe weather.

As always, the hard part isn't building the actual link--it's connecting it to the nearest railheads on both sides, and conjuring up a business rationale for doing so.

---PCJ

Comment Re:Open source? (Score 1) 13

Coincidentally, I had been taking a close look at Krita on and off (the last "on" being a week or so ago) after hearing that someone is working on adding frame-by-frame animation functionality to the application.

I ran across P&C while scoping out the application's capabilities (in part via your YouTube channel) and now I'm tempted to try out this application before the animation capabilities are added in. And now it gets spotlighted in /.

Now if I only knew how to color well enough to actually take advantage of Krita's capabilities :D...

As for doing artwork with OSS, I've used Inkscape for digital inking for a couple of years now, and have given MyPaint enough playtime to produce one of my few completely digital pics (cell-shaded w/o backdrop), which is more than I can say for the apps I actually paid for (Sketchbook Pro 2011 and Clip Studio Paint 5), for some inexplicable reason.

---PCJ

Comment Re:280km (Score 1) 189

No they aren't. Amtrak outlined a plan for a new Northeast Corridor that could support what everyone else in the world would term "high speed rail".

It amounts to a formal plan to have on hand, just in case monkeys flew out all our collective butts, causing the money to actually do this to miraculously materialize out of hot air.

In reality, at best Amtrak is more concerned with wrangling the funding to replace it's Acela trainsets before they completely wear out, and assuming they pull that off, finding funding to replace all the close-to 40-year-old passenger cars and the not-much-younger diesel locomotives that they've been running the wheels off of just to keep their network running.

Relevant link: Why America Can't Have Great Trains

---PCJ

Comment Re:How is this not your fault? (Score 1) 321

I'd expect to just have to enter the times by hand in that case, not to have a completely useless device.

The Archos TVPlus DVRs were like this. While they defaulted to a (now defunct) subscription TV listings service, you were always just one keypress from a standard "set it yourself" date/channel/time-on/time-off/quality menu. I never actually used the subscription service because of this.

Also, these boxes recorded standard MP4 AVI files with PCM audio that you could easily offload through the USB port (possibly over Ethernet/wifi too). Pity they never made a set-top HD version.*

(then again, the above may explain why they didn't...hmm)

---PCJ

*(their "Internet Tablet" series PMPs could behave like a PVR and record 720P (if I recall correctly) when docked in an extra-cost "DVR station", but no set-top version existed)

Comment Re:I've seen this somewhere before... (Score 1) 180

Not only that, but someone managed to find and preserve scans of an article on its construction: http://forums.finalgear.com/general-automotive/awesome-thread-automotive-edition-34036/page-131/

Unfortunately it seems the real "Big Bus" was scrapped. Maybe some goofy automotive-reality show could attempt to re-create the thing.

---PCJ

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