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Comment Re:"I have to get me a Google phone" thought nobod (Score 1) 104

Are you some kind of Apple fanboy or something?

Yes, Google has made some other big winners: the two biggest ones are GMail and Google Maps. GMail's been going great for over 10 years now (though they pushed through a crappy UI change a while back, but everyone's been making crappy UIs now for some time, including Apple with their buttons that don't look like buttons), and Maps is unparalleled as a platform that provides both mapping, turn-by-turn navigation, plus a business directory, so I can do a search for "greek restaurant" in some unfamiliar city I'm in, find a place nearby, look at reviews to make sure I won't get food poisoning, and then have it navigate me there, all within one convenient app.

They also have Hangouts Dialer, which lets me make free VoIP calls, and a lot of people seem to like Google Voice.

They do have a serious problem with abandoning products, so don't make yourself too dependent on them if it's not one of their big flagship products (search, Gmail, Maps), since they do have a history of pulling the rug out.

As for Android being a "negative brand", that's just plain stupid. It has some serious flaws to be sure, but it's the *only* viable competitor to iPhone, which has gigantic problems of its own.

Comment Here's the only relevant bit (Score 1) 86

While middle-aged and older Facebook users don't like seeing news in their feeds, those aged 18-29 were much more interested and excited to see even more news articles on Facebook.

This is the segment marketers and advertisers covet the most. The early years of independent adulthood is when habits that will endure for decades are formed. The party a young person votes for in his first two or three elections becomes the party he will vote for for the rest of his life. If he buys ACME brand rocket roller skates, chances are he'll never buy another brand of rocket roller skates.

Comment Re:Translation: (Score 2) 104

How is this not in their interest? Why should Google give two shits about what Nexus users want, especially as far as having a bloatware-free phone?

If you're one of these people who wants a bloatware-free phone, what are your options? Right now, it's to get an iPhone, get a Nexus, or use an alternative ROM like CyanogenMod. Presumably, people who really like Nexus really don't want an iPhone for various reasons, or else they would already have one; I think it's safe to assume that these people are invested in the Android ecosystem and want to stay away from the Apple ecosystem. So that leaves Nexus and CM. If they were technically skilled and comfortable with doing things like rooting phones and installing alt-ROMs, they probably would have just gone that route already, since you can get much better phones that way (like the Galaxy S series, with removable batteries up to S5 and expandable storage and the best screens available, plus excellent availability of spare parts). So Nexus users appear to be people who don't like Apple, and aren't comfortable with or don't want the hassle of the DIY approach that CM offers; they want something they can just buy off-the-shelf and have a bloatware-free, stock Android experience phone with timely updates.

Now Google is removing that. So what are these people going to do?

I don't think any of them are moving to iPhone. Maybe a select few will finally decide to take the CM plunge. But the rest are just going to get the new bloated-up "G" phone, and any others will just get some other Android phone. Either way, Google wins, as they get to push more bloatware and spying on the users and increase profits.

This is no different from everyone bitching and complaining about Windows 10 and how it's bad for MS's customers. It's good for MS because the customers aren't going to go anywhere, they're just going to complain and then bend over.

Comment Re:Perpetual motion machine of the first type (Score 1) 114

If it works as advertised, it violates the law of conservation of energy, so its energy efficiency can be infinite.
(it produces a force with no reaction mass.

OK, I'm not a physicist and it's been a long time since my physics classes, but I don't see why mass is important at all. Mass and energy are interchangeable by E=mc^2. Electric motors produce motion without losing any mass, so I don't really see why it's impossible for there to be some way of producing thrust in a vacuum using only energy. Just because all our prior methods of producing thrust in space depend on Newton's 3rd law doesn't mean that it has to be that way. While there may be no mass escaping from this device, it absolutely is consuming energy. Where does that go? We already know we can produce thrust with lasers, which are pure energy; we've even talked about making micro-miniature space probes and sending them to Alpha Centauri with a big laser, and the whole principle of solar sails rests on thrust provided by pure energy.

Comment Re:I didn't see the day... (Score 1) 19

Most people have cellphones now, with no landline phone backup. In an extended power outage, it's likely the landlines will keep running on backup generators long after the cell towers' 4hr batteries (mandated by the FCC after hurricane Katrina) have run out of juice. Fortunately, most people still have landlines for their INTERNET access. That is assuming you have some power, while the area around you does not, for whatever reason.

Of course I would resort to a quick email to friends and family, not some clunky , proprietary web service. Email to SMS gateways are probably a good option to keep in mind, too.

Comment Re:Java? (Score 2) 289

Even the most trivial C program can run afoul of differences from one system to another, one compiler to another. And C code has to be recompiled for each platform it ends up running on. It would be nice if I could compile a C or C++ application to LLVM bitcode against some portable APIs and have a runtime compile it natively but this is not the case right now and I doubt it ever will happen. Only then can we talk about C being portable.

Non-trivial C or C++ software is always littered with #ifdefs and other conditional tests throughout its build system and source to make it work across systems. For example SQLite3 has over 2000 #ifdef, #if, #else clauses in its source code to deal with various platform, compiler, debug configurations. And that's just a small library.

By and large Java DOES run anywhere. It is quite common for developers to write and test Java code on a PC workstation and deploy the same .jar / .war / .ear file to servers running Linux, Solaris or something else. The main reason this might not work is when the Java has JNI or some OS dependency that breaks this portability (e.g. SWT or JOGL). But most code has no such problem. And this is why Java is the prevalent language it is.

Comment Re:Why? (Score 1) 47

Steam actually found that sweet spot between walling the user in and offering him what he wants. Allow me to elaborate.

What does NOT work with Steam? Well, I cannot really sensibly resell the game I bought unless I sell the account it is bound to along with the game, which is afaik against the TOS. At least until Steam finds out that they could make a cut of that sale and doesn't fear that studios dump them for basically becoming a way worse version than GameStop (from the Studios' view).

Aside of this, Steam is quite permissive, going as far as offering me the Linux version of games I bought for Windows where available when I launch it in Linux. Now, could you imagine this in a MS-Shop? Or a Mac-Shop? I somehow doubt that you would get Android versions of programs you bought for iPhone, even if you could install the iShop (or whatever it's called) on an Android phone.

The permissiveness of Steam even goes so far that you can "share" your game library with friends to some degree. Personally, I can't really say that there is anything I'm missing.

And this is all the difference. What matters is whether the limitations you're dealing with actually cut into your experience. Steam offers a lot of convenience. No DVDs to hunt down in the mess I call apartment, no hours of patching before playing, double click to install, double click to play. Easy. And yes, there are limitations, mostly concerning the resale of the software. Doesn't affect me, though. But what DOES affect me is that I can return software after playing it for a few minutes and noticing that it's a messy, buggy, unstable piece of junk or simply noticing that I don't like it.

Try that with your local game retailer.

Comment Re:How quickly we forget (Score 1) 47

And Sony has shown no, zero, nada, zip remorse for it. So far not even an apology came out of them and the ... "compromise" they offered to compensate for the damage was offered when their lawyers pretty much told them that they better offer some sort of token because no court is stupid enough to side with them.

As far as anyone can tell, they still feel that action was well within their rights and justified, so why should I assume otherwise? 11 years ago or 111 years ago, what's the difference when the attitude doesn't change?

Comment On ColdFusion [Re:and they're abandoned in 10... (Score 1) 149

Actually, ColdFusion is still being sold, and has 2 or 3 open-source alternatives.

Its early selling point was easier web-page coding, and compared to what was available at the time, it was.

Then it became more known for making things simpler for HTML designers to integrate their markup templates with database data. And, it was and still is pretty good at that because you usually don't have to escape in and out of markup versus imperative code. In addition to the built-in CF tags, you can make custom tags for them also.

It's a tool that fits its niche pretty well.

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