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Comment Re:Stupid (Score 1) 1042

I appreciate seeing Egan brought up.

I've always felt he was overlooked by the masses as the father of "stuck in the machine" popular sci-fi of the 90's (13th Floor and The Matrix owe him much recognition). In the past couple of years, a couple of really good sci-fi games (Talos Principle and SOMA) have come out that explore these topics and, unfortunately, I read/hear comparisons to these movies and not the deeper source work of Diaspora and Permutation City.

As a philosophy dropout turned IT consultant back in the early 90's, Egan's concepts have provided decades of thought experiments (and as someone with a few mental health issues, an existential crisis or two that teetered on outright psychotic delusion).

I wish I could still read fiction. I've missed his last two works but I continue to love his ideas from afar.

Comment Re: Thanks to (Score 1) 369

This is why I read at 0 hidden and always have.

It's simple enough for me to ignore Apps!, APK, Moo, GNAA, whatever, but I tend to find that the mix of trolling to considered posts is nowhere near as off balance as usually suggested.

Losing the ability to post anonymously would undermine a core value of Slashdot. How ironic it would be to have a submission fall under "YRO" and know there would be no anonymous posts within... and this comes from a guy that has posted (maybe) twice as anonymous in 15 years. That said, given the state of things at my job, I've seriously been considering it as of late.

Yes, the signal to noise ratio might be frustrating (or humorous, depending on the mood) at times -- but it's an integral part of the experience. AC wasn't a byproduct of bad design, it was an intentional feature at the beginning. I don't think society has evolved to such a point where it has become vestigial. How can it be, there's a Snowden story on the front page right now?

Comment Re:no such thing as reality television (Score 1) 62

Unfortunately, this is true.

I remember being quite excited about the prospect of some show about a group of mechanics that build end end motorcycles. What I wanted was to watch talented cats build beautiful bikes, what I got was some kind of soap opera.

I'd also love to watch a weekly hour long episode focused on luthiers. Show me the beginning to end process of building a beautifully hand crafted guitar, violin, etc... from picking the wood to testing the acoustics and I'd watch it. Hell, expand it to cover all instruments (even though the Hang Drum is no longer being produced, that would have made an excellent series); but, I know... it'd turn into the same thing: personalities on parade.

Comment Re:You just invented the home graphics mainframe! (Score 1) 172

I've got an (aging) Mac Mini Server at home that I use for some recording work (Garageband for quick knock out ideas, Reaper for more involved projects). Due to less time with a guitar in hand/sitting at the keys, I thought I'd play around with Steam's streaming solution (using the Mac as the delivery mechanism for the beastly desktop workstation sitting in the home office).

It works very well. Enough that I wound up picking up their dedicated streaming box. I'm wired Cat6 everywhere it counts, so I didn't bother trying wifi (and can see where there could be some real latency issues there), but I am impressed. I played through Soma, on the couch with a mouse, keyboard, 64" lcd and top quality audio gear this past weekend and was rather impressed with the results.

I was dubious on the onset, but they're getting there, mate. As long as the CPU/GPU on the backend are in place (supported with good wiring) for the heavy lifting, streaming is an option.

Comment Re:If you did not pay for the product, you are one (Score 1) 578

Here's the thing...

You're in a community that is long steeped in appreciation of Linux and does not view command line interaction as masochism. Hell, most of the Windows professionals here probably spend a great deal of their time in Powershell or Putty sessions.

There's also a certain amount of joy in bashing Windows. Because, well... dealing with it in the past has been a pain point for many. And, it's fun. Sort of like that kid in school that just didn't get that they harder they tried to be cool, the more awkward they became.

Ultimately, your condescending impression of a neck beard will not magically sway anyone's opinion. It will accent your slicked back hair and Duran Duran shirt, though.

Comment Re:I'm one-handed... (Score 1) 240

I actually am due to a birth defect. Left hand is fine, right is missing at the wrist but has a partial digit.

I learned to type in the mid-80's (Apple II at home) and wound up taking a typing class in high school for some reason. I was averaging 90 wpm with high accuracy, left hand stationed at the home keys, right all over the place to make up for the missing fingers. My poor typing instructor had no idea of what to do except give me an A...

As for split keyboards, they break my rhythm. My left hand occasionally extends to the first column of the right side to pick up extra keys if my right hand has moved to over to the edge of the keyboard.

Comment Another downsizer... (Score 1) 287

Where I once had a rotation of 1 or 2u racks, I now have a couple of i7 Mac Minis (with several external dual drive LaCie's in mirrored mode) running VMWare.

As I traded my consulting gig for straight employment a few years ago, I'm housing far less data, too... Nas4Free for files/media, VPN for when I'm at work (which is funny, because as soon as I'm home I VPN into work...), MySQL, GLPi and Calibre.

Other than that, I've got my workstation (probably my last custom build....) in my home office, a couple of Pi's running XBMC and my ever present MacBook Air.

Comment Re:surprisingly useful. Never booted to Linux (Score 1) 68

Depends on the framework... we use Brainhoney which integrates pretty well with Google Docs; which is fortunate for us as we're rolling out a pretty extensive 1:1 Chromebook initiative this year.

Don't take that as a rebuttal to your point, though -- we lucked out, truth be told. It's not as if we planned that to begin with, it was merely a happy coincidence.

As a result, we're modeling our blended learning programs around the idea of the Chromebook/Google Drive as a tool to collect and prepare content and our labs as a place to create the final presentation: Content is prepared on the go and assembled (if need be) in a lab. Of course, the side effect to all this is transitioning to a Google district (zero to ~50k accounts over the last week) and the sanity of that is up for debate.

It's also meant a myriad of third party solutions to be brought in... Gaggle (email and document discovery), Hapara (teacher dashboard), integration with our SIS, synchronizing AD with Google for accounts and passwords... all so we can transition from cheap laptops/netbooks to cheaper Chromebooks.

Sorry, rambling. Early morning coffee... I now live, breathe and eat Google. Quite a change from the last few years of iPads (and, in certain ways, welcome -- at least there are real tools available for management!).

Best of luck to your daughter. Stay involved; the whole on online learning game is a new one.

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