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Comment Re:Not surprising (Score 3, Interesting) 151

But that's the problem...

Apps are VERY trendy. If you want to be hip with apps, you gotta get what is hot this week. And the churn is huge.

I welcome a return to mobile web being the preferred way to get information/do things.

I'm on a 'lesser' mobile platform (Windows). I give a damn about apps. Recently Amazon pulled support for their app on Windows Phone- that's pretty serious when even Amazon doesn't want to make an app on your platform.

But I still muddle along with their website- cuz I gotta buy stuff.

I wish they'd pour their efforts into their website, instead of their apps. Then everybody could have a good experience.

Comment Re:Disease (Score 1) 204

I live a country where Microsoft does release their high-end phones (US). I have the 950, after a 1520, after a...shoot, the one with the big camera, can't remember the model.

But the point is- I agree with you on the apps. Assuming you weren't being sarcastic.

To me, apps are a huge waste of time.

Most apps are only used once or twice. Very few apps are used for more than a couple of months. MOST apps are garbage/un-necessary.

I actually like the fact that there is really no point going to the 'Store' for Windows phone. It just means I don't waste time discovering new apps, downloading them, finding out how the work, then being disappointed. That really is the scenario for about 98% of the apps out there.

Comment Re: Learn what empathy actually means (Score 1) 338

Moving costs REAL money. Buying/selling a house will cost you about 6% (3% times 2). In that area its at least $500,000. So figure at least $30,000 just for real estate agents.

Taxes...title...moving trucks...shit adds up.

Anyone saying, "just move" to someone losing their job is very naive.

Comment I have been waiting for this (Score 1) 67

I've actually been looking for a high-quality All-In-One.

I use a nice workstation at work...two high quality 24 inch displays on a monsterous dual-mount. Giant tower, etc. It's at work and I don't mind it taking all the space. (Coding and photo editing)

I don't want a giant set of monitors and a noisy tower at home. I have a nice office, and I want to keep it that way. I was looking for an All-In-One, and I was actually resigned to buying a Mac, because of the screen. For photo editing the screen is the primary component...not the 'power' of the computer, or even the OS. I just want a nice big screen in an attractive package, with the fewest cords possible.

The 5K iMac is evidently at the top of the heap right now.

There is a market for a high-end AIO. I'm glad Microsoft is providing a product to fill the space. I am a photographer, and I see clients in my office. So it has to look good on my desk. Having touch is a big bonus, and zero cords (a battery would be wonderful) would top off the dream.

Under $1,800 and you can pretty much sign me up right now.

Comment Re:Getting There (Score 1) 385

I have two optical media readers in my world.

#1- computer at work has a reader. I don't know if it works, I've never used it...computer is 3 years old.

#2- my Xbox 360 has a reader. About 4 years ago one of my kids broke it, and it has caused me zero inconvenience since then. Occasionally I will get new games, but it is always a download.

The last time I thought about optical media was when my mom came to visit. She wanted to show me some pictures, or a movie, or something and she held up a DVD like it was a prize. "Where is your DVD player?" I was very happy to tell her that I didn't have one.

DVDs had a very short lifespan in my world. Probably the shortest of all media, other than those small Sony...Minidiscs? I had one of those players that I thought was awesome, for like two months.

Comment Re: Microsoft's Customers are Screwed.. Again (Score 2) 140

I think you are giving Apple way too much credit.

Both companies do a good job of taking other ideas, refining them, then using their size and resources to bring products to market.

Regarding Bing- yes, there is a need for it. If you only look at consumer search functionality Google serves that purpose, and is generally better than Bing. (I am a lonely Bing user...) But- do you recommend that nobody else compete in this space? More importantly, Microsoft owns the index/search technology they use for other products- such as Cortana. Indexing huge amounts of information is a very important function moving forward. Microsoft reps have stated many times that the primary importance of Bing is not the direct consumer space.

Apple has had its share of 'me too' products. I bought more than my share of 'Performa' macs, which were just absolute crap. Their Apple Watch is crap. They have had many others. Hell, I owned an Apple III, when everyone with any sense was buying IBM.

Apple has had a few blockbuster successes, which have led to them being a hugely successful company. But that does not elevate them to some incredible status where they do no wrong or are just better than other companies.

Comment It's a matter of congestion (Score 1) 381

*If* self-driving cars can reduce congestion significantly, the changeover will be a tidal wave.

I live near enough to San Francisco, that I could make the trip easily enough for a relaxing day in a great city. Unfortunately, traffic is a nightmare. So I avoid it. Driving on the freeway to Sacramento is ridiculous. I avoid that too. Once there is a reasonable percentage of autonomous cars, that traffic should be greatly reduced by being more efficient. (Not the number of cars going down, but the overall efficiency going up).

Also, a lot of deliveries could easily be handled via autonomous vehicles. Again, the efficiency would be killer. Set up all deliveries to be at night! Mail, packages, etc. Just drop them in a specified area in front of my house, and I'll pick it up in the morning.

Submission + - Researcher Uses Valve Security Bug to Upload Paint Drying Game on Steam (softpedia.com)

An anonymous reader writes: A security researcher found two bypasses in Valve's game review process that eventually allowed him to publish Steam Trading Cards and a full game on the Steam Store called "Watch Paint Dry" (reference to this case from last month involving the British film censors).

The game was supposed to be an April Fools' Day prank, but the researcher forgot to set a release date, and was published on the Steam Store last weekend. Valve has fixed the security bypass in the meantime. These were extremely dangerous since it allowed anyone to publish games on the Store (possible containing malware) without a Valve employee ever taking a look at them, or knowing they went through the review process.

Why BART Is Falling Apart 474

HughPickens.com writes: Matthias Gafni writes in the San Jose Mercury News that the engineers who built BART, the rapid transit system serving the San Francisco Bay Area that started operation in 1972, used principles developed for the aerospace industry rather than tried-and-true rail standards. And that's the trouble. "Back when BART was created, (the designers) were absolutely determined to establish a new product, and they intended to export it around the world," says Rod Diridon. "They may have gotten a little ahead of themselves using new technology. Although it worked, it was extremely complex for the time period, and they never did export the equipment because it was so difficult for other countries to install and maintain." The Space Age innovations have made it more challenging for the transit agency to maintain the BART system from the beginning. Plus, the aging system was designed to move 100,000 people per week and now carries 430,000 a day, so the loss of even a single car gets magnified with crowded commutes, delays and bus bridges. For example, rather than stick to the standard rail track width of 4 feet, 8.5 inches, BART engineers debuted a 5-foot, 6-inch width track, a gauge that remains to this day almost exclusive to the system. Industry experts say the unique track width necessitates custom-made wheel sets, brake assemblies and track repair vehicles.

Another problem is the dearth of readily available replacement parts for BART's one-of-a-kind systems. Maintenance crews often scavenge parts from old, out-of-service cars to avoid lengthy waits for orders to come in; sometimes mechanics are forced to manufacture the equipment themselves. "Imagine a computer produced in 1972," says David Hardt. "No one is supporting that old equipment any longer, but those same microprocessors are what we have controlling our logic systems." Right now BART needs 100 thyristors at a total cost of $100,000. BART engineers said it could take 22 weeks to ship them to the San Francisco Bay Area to replace in BART's "C" cars, which make up the older cars in the fleet. Right now, the agency has none. Nick Josefowitz says it makes no sense to dwell on design decisions made a half-century ago. "I think we need to use what we have today and build off that, rather than fantasize what could have been done in the past. The BART system was state of the art when it was built, and now it's technologically obsolete and coming to the end of its useful life."

Submission + - Facebook Testing Anti-Impersonation Feature

Trailrunner7 writes: Phishing and account takeover attacks take many forms, especially on massive platforms such as Twitter or Facebook, and defending against them is a tall order. Facebook has tried a number of tactics over the years, and now the company is testing a new feature that will detect and warn users when someone else is trying to impersonate them on the network.

The system is designed to address a difficult problem on social networks: impostors. Many social media platforms allow anonymity in some form or another, but some, like Twitter, have adjusted those policies over time to require real names and identities. As more and more people connect their online identities to their real-world lives in various ways, the problem of online impostors has become a much more serious one. An attacker who has the ability to put together a convincing false account for someone else can cause serious damage to the victim’s personal and perhaps professional life.

Feed Google News Sci Tech: The Oculus Rift Is Here, but Virtual Reality Is Still Rough Around the Edges - New York Times (google.com)


New York Times

The Oculus Rift Is Here, but Virtual Reality Is Still Rough Around the Edges
New York Times
Microsoft Created a Twitter Bot to Learn From Users. It Quickly Became a Racist Jerk. Chip-Card Payment System Delays Frustrate Retailers. Loading... See next articles. See previous articles. Personal Tech. Site Navigation. Home Page Home Page World.
Oculus Rift VR headset review: The magical, yet unfinished birth of virtual realityPCWorld
Review: Oculus Rift Is Expensive, Complicated, and Totally WonderfulTIME
Oculus Rift Review: VR's Rising Star Isn't Ready for the MainstreamWall Street Journal
WIRED-USA TODAY-Gizmodo-The Verge
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