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Comment Re:Would prefer a seperate app (Score 1) 87

That's literally the point. To go from screen-cap + crop + text -> image with no asthetic requirements, mspaint is great

It's useful for extremely simple stuff. I work with professional (video game) artists, and they use it all the time for quick and dirty internal screen cap, joke, or congrats type emails, etc.

It's frequently the right tool for the right job.


Largest Auto-Scandal Settlement In US History: Judge Approves $15 Billion Volkswagen Settlement (usatoday.com) 116

A federal just has approved the largest auto-scandal settlement in U.S. history, a $14.7 billion settlement concerning Volkswagen Group's diesel car emissions scandal. USA Today reports: U.S. District Court Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco approved the sweeping agreement between consumers, the government, California regulators and the German automaker in a written ruling a week after signaling he was likely to sign off. He said the agreement is "fair, reasonable and adequate." The settlement comes about a year after Volkswagen admitted that it rigged 11 million vehicles worldwide with software designed to dodge emissions standards. The company is still facing criminal investigations by the U.S. Justice Department and German prosecutors. The U.S. probe could lead to additional financial penalties and criminal indictments. About 475,000 Volkswagen owners in the U.S. can choose between a buyback or a free fix and compensation, if a repair becomes available. VW will begin administering the settlement immediately, having already devoted several hundred employees to handling the process. Buybacks range in value from $12,475 to $44,176, including restitution payments, and varying based on milage. People who opt for a fix approved by the Environmental Protection Agency will receive payouts ranging from $5,100 to $9,852, depending on the book value of their car. Volkswagen will also pay $2.7 billion for environmental mitigation and another $2 billion for clean-emissions infrastructure.

Comment Re:Hold down power button and ... (Score 3, Insightful) 429

One thing that /. users don't get is that while that may seem obvious to you, it's not obvious to everyone. That's why the law and regulations are constantly in search of trying to balance citizens from having to be experts about everything they buy/own/need. And the time honoured thought of "oh, only idiots will not do this, and idiots are people who deserve what happens to them" plays nicely into the hands of a dysfunctional society. If you have a "just world" mentality, that things happen to people *because* they deserve it, you may not get out enough.

Comment Re:Bad regulation is bad, but some rules are OK (Score 1) 343


Never had the joy(?) of doing a hardware design spec, but I once spent about a year of my life on the software design and spec for a major contract.

Even (especially!) standards as complex as the definitions of programming languages come with dates or version numbers. Fortran 66 is not Fortran 77 is not Fortran90 is not Fortran 95 is not Fortran2003 is not Fortran2008. Close, and there's probably a common subset in there somewhere, but they aren't the same.

Ditto for any other programming language with an ISO standard -- the year is part of the standard number. (Although curiously, C89 and C90 are the same language, because the 1989 ANSI C standard (X3.159-1989) was adopted as the ISO standard (ISO/IEC 9899:1990) in 1990.)

So yeah, if you're spec'ing something as part of a billion-dollar project, hardware or software, get the details nailed down. At the very least, stick in verbiage to the effect that "all standards named here-in, unless otherwise specified, shall refer to those current as of the date of this specification."

Comment Re:"after billions of dollars in budget overruns" (Score 1) 343

And "clean" is also relative

It is when you consider the amount of mining, separation, transportation and disposal of the energy-equivalent amount of coal and ash -- 1 cubic centimetre of uranium is about the equivalent of a mile-long train load of coal.

(Or the amount of mining, refining, etc, etc, to manufacture and install the equivalent in solar panels or wind turbines.)

Most people have no comprehension of the energy density of nuclear vs chemical fuels. This might help.

(Fun fact -- the trace thorium in coal has more potential nuclear energy than the chemical energy of burning the coal.)

Comment What's that in Libraries of Congress? (Score 1) 343

promised to generate enough power to light up 1.3 million homes.

So how many megawatts is that? (And no, given the name of the plant, searching for "watts" doesn't help.)

And are we talking trailer park homes or mansions? Does "light up" include heating/cooling, running the electronics, etc, etc.

Who comes up with these freaking units, anyway?

(Grouchy because /me hasn't finished first cup of coffee yet.)

Comment Re:Bribe? (Score 1) 122

Why not both ?

As an aside, can you imagine the unholy shitstorm that would be making the rounds if any of this were happening to Apple ?

Exploding iPhones... The internet might not cope with that, and then Apple bribing people to keep quiet about the whole thing ? We might have a singularity event...

Comment Keeping an eye on the Mini. (Score 1) 142

Mine is a 2011, and was due for replacement a year ago. I converted from Linux to Mac in '07, and am about ready to convert back. The hardest part will be replacing the iTunes files that are in m4a format. They may be DRM-free, but that doesn't mean players other than ipods can actually play them. Figure I can just buy the CD's I need, or download from Amazon MP3.

Not the most expensive mistake I've made.

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