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Comment Re:A perfect Christmas gift... (Score 1) 188

The other problem with modern mastering practice is that the engineers know the listening environment is likely to be really bad earbuds connected to something that plays MP3s. Switch to high-end headsets or good speakers and the mix sounds terrible, because it is.

As for vinyl, hipster audiophiles say they like the "warm" sound. Yes, it sounds "warm" because the low end is largely absent, the high end is constrained, and most of all, the dynamic range is quite compressed.

(Ex audio engineer here, though I come from an earlier era.)

Comment Re:Unfortunate way to sell Linux on the desktop (Score 2) 137

I've noticed a trend, not only on Slashdot but elsewhere, that in trying to get people to use desktop Linux distros a lot of the advocacy is based on what Windows (specifically Windows 10) is doing in terms of telemetry, reduction of control over the operating system and what not, and basically elements of Windows, and NOT about how Linux is better in specific ways.

That's an interesting point, and much of the anti-Linux pro-Windows marketing targets that very point, by emphasizing what Windows can do which Linux cannot. (It will inevitably be vertical apps, high-end gaming, high-end features in things like PhotoShop, etc.)

Of course, the real draw (for many of us) with Linux is the concept free as in beer and especially free as in freedom. And with Windows 10 becoming the spyware of the millenium, there are people looking for alternatives. So a certain amount of what is, as you state, negative marketing, seems justified.

But you're right, it's not sufficient in and of itself. Users have to be able to do whatever it is they need to do. Linux has come a very long way in that regard, to the point at which in my own work I need Windows for ---- absolutely nothing at all. Those of us who are Linux fans need to promote that angle.

For instance, I always cite the use case of my wife, who uses the Linux installation I set up for her, and neither knows nor cares what OS she's using --- she can do email, Facebook, photos, documents, on-line games, etc. and that's all that matters to her. I suppose I should be more forward in promoting my own use case, namely writing and publishing and doing related analysis.

Linux has a strong case: a lot of functionality, end-user ease of use easily on a par with Windows, and the aforemention Very Big Deal: free as in freedom and beer.

Comment Re:Surprising? Not so much. (Score 1) 134

Well, at least it still is a representative democracy in theory. Look at the US, the "demos" (i.e. the population or at least its majority) doesn't get to pick the leader, so it is not a "democracy" under most reasonable definitions.

In Great Britain, the Prime Minister is not directly elected either.

Comment Re:DUH! (Score 1) 67

It's actually an article of faith among some here that having your content available to download for free doesn't in any way affect your sales negatively, an argument frequently used as a justification for mass copyright infringement.

So sales are affected negatively by free legal streaming, though under 10%. No surprise; I actually might have thought the lost sales would be substantially higher.

But the illegal download argument is different (note that I don't claim that copyright infringement is acceptable). Illegal downloaders likely wouldn't buy the content anyhow, so the lost sales would seemingly be small or even negligible.

Comment Re:Boko Haram? (Score 1) 331

Indeed, from TFS: "having been linked to the Arab Spring, the war in Syria and the Boko Haram terrorist insurgency."

No matter where you stand on climate change, linking it to the above is more than a bit of a stretch.

Which brings up a point. If you're serious about doing something about AGW/climate change, articles such as this one move the cause backward, not forward, by giving ammunition to AGM/cc opponents.

Comment There are no magic solutions (Score 5, Insightful) 332

The problem is that people want magic solutions, and they keep chasing the latest fad in the hopes of finding the secret alchemy that will make average developers turn into gold stars, produce perfect systems in a tenth the time, and meet all requirements without the bother of knowing them.

Anyone who's ever done any system of significance that actually worked will know that the "best" tools and methods are situational. Need a bash script to list a few files? The approach is different than it would be if you're hired to redo everything used by the IRS.

We can go all the way back to the "shelf full of binders" methodologies. In their day, they were supposed to be the magic cure-all. Today, it's Agile, or it's XYZZY or whatever is the latest and greatest. Still haven't found that secret sauce.

One size doesn't fit all. There is no magic. Successful development projects require skill, experience, good judgment, hard work, and competent leadership.

Comment Re:Value for money (Score 3, Informative) 196

>The only way Apple or any company makes a big profit is if people like what they are getting for the price.

What a naive way of thinking. Either that or Apple uses predatory tactics to trap people and trick them into using their products.

Monopolies or near monopolies can easily be predatory, but that requires very limited consumer choice. I can't see how smartphones fall in that category.

In my view Apple charges a lot for what they deliver. But I don't have to buy Apple and I don't. Others feel Apple is a value, whether based on quality, functionality, or simply perceived prestige. They buy Apple. That's how the market works.

I suppose there is some lock-in, in that if you've spent a fair amount on Apple apps, you can't switch and take them to Android, whereas on Android, you can take your apps to a different brand of phone or tablet. But that doesn't seem like a predatory practice on Apple's part.

Face it: Apple is expensive but many people are willing to pay Apple's prices. Apple makes a lot of money that way. What's the problem?

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