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Comment Is Swift better than Objective-C for anything? (Score 1) 338

I've been writing Mac and iOS apps with Objective-C for a long time. One of my favorite things about Objective-C is the ability to use C and C++ APIs easily from within my app. Why is Swift even needed at all? What about it is actually better than Objective-C from the standpoint of someone who is already highly proficient in Objective-C and C++?

Submission + - California Now Mandating EVs from Volkswagen. (roadandtrack.com)

schwit1 writes: Of the approximately 83,000 U.S. Volkswagen, Audi, and Porsche models from the 2009 through 2016 model years with emissions-cheating 3.0-liter TDI V-6 engines—some of which will be bought back through a massive settlement—about 16,000 are registered in California. And California, which has set its own ZEV mandate requiring electric vehicles, has taken what might be seen as a disproportionately strong role in determining how Volkswagen makes amends—to the point where Sacramento is dictating the automaker's product lineup.

The federal Secondary Consent Decree released this week for those vehicles included a separate document for California. The California Partial Consent Decree, ancillary to the massive federal Consent Decree that lays out how that will happen, has several state-specific stipulations that have little connection to SUVs and luxury sedans equipped with the TDI V-6. They go well beyond stating to whom Volkswagen should pay fines or how the state should spend its $800 million share of the $2 billion VW is mandated to spend for infrastructure updates. It could be the first time ever in which an automaker is required by regulators to build a particular product—a product that might not even have been in the pipeline—as punishment for wrongdoing.

Comment Re:Realistic (Score 1) 94

PDAs like the Newton and Palm were great. They had two very obvious barriers that held them back. The first one was they weren't merged with a smart phone. I was a Newton developer and had conversations with people inside and outside of Apple about the need to merge the Newton with a smartphone. The second was lack of internet connectivity. I worked on some projects that involved using a cellular modem with the Newton. At the time it was very slow and very expensive. Just running our (brief) demo cost about $5 worth of data. In the case of the Newton specifically, I think there were looming security problems that would have been a nightmare if it had moved forward and had internet connectivity widely merged with it. The programming model made it easy to access any data on the device and even the internals of other applications. My main point, though, is that it was pretty obvious the kinds of super cool things you could do with PDAs if they had ubiquitous network access and integration with a phone. It isn't clear what technical limitations are in Smart Watches that prevent them from being significantly more useful. Perhaps the Apple Watch will be more useful if Siri becomes more useful and AirPods ever ship? I don't know. Its not that the watch isn't good, it is just that we haven't figured out what compelling use cases exist yet.

Comment Re:Not permanent (Score 1) 186

I read recently that trees and woody plants evolved a long long time before bacteria evolved that could digest the wood. If the coal and oil deposits were created in an environment without that bacteria, then when we run out of oil, we will have very little oil left and more won't be made even if you waited millions of years. Imagine if a future intelligent species (likely not mammalian species either) examines the fossil record of its time and learns that we lived hundreds of millions of years ago in a time of free oxygen, followed by the vast majority of oil suddenly being missing in the fossil record, followed by a period of only anaerobic life, and then a whole second story of evolution. Those creatures will freak the fuck out if they find evidence that we had a culture in the fossil record. They might even find evidence of human technology that is more advanced than theirs. I wonder if they would wonder why we didn't industrialize with nuclear power? They almost certainly will find evidence of nuclear technologies. They will wonder why we killed ourselves.

Comment Re: good for them (Score 3, Insightful) 186

While I agree that is true and while I agree that life actually put it into the resevoirs you are talking about, *our species* evolved after the coal and oil resevoirs were created. I would mention that life was common on earth prior to the introduction of free oxygen in the atmosphere. The "natural state" does not involve O2 in the atmosphere.

Comment This is about power, control, and greed... (Score 3, Interesting) 314

Greed: Don't fix the copper wire infrastructure we get paid to maintain.

Control: If you're moved off of copper wire POTS, then in an emergency or power outage you cannot effectively call for help. Wireless systems get overrun with numbers of calls if the emergency is large enough (hurricane, tornado, flood, etc) and your call will not get through. Or you won't have power (wireless), whereas copper is designed to (almost) always have power and JUST WORK.

Power: See above. Put on your tin foil hat, but this is one step in a wave to disrupt and control communication when a "state of emergency" or "martial law" is declared. Just wait.

Comment The medical based business I work for... (Score 1) 153

deliberately buys refurbished laptops and desktops with Windows 7 Professional on them, or buys new PCs with 8.1 Pro and downgrade rights.

We will never willingly move from 7 Professional due to the massive violation of HIPAA, Sarbanes-Oxley, and other laws that Windows 10 is both accused of AND has been verified doing. Seriously, I doubt you see any major hospital or other medical profession make the move to 10 -- willingly at any rate.

Yes, eventually, we may have to move to Windows 10 but I am hoping that day is sometime in the year 2020 when I (probably) won't be in charge of Information Services and Technology for the company.

Comment Re:WTF??! (Score 1) 125

Emacs users have more time for commenting on slashdot. What else are they going to do while waiting for Emacs to load?

I don't know about the rest of them, but while I waited for Emacs to compile and load, I wrote a major made for posting Slashdot comments. Of course, I used Vim to write it because it has better syntax highlighting for Lisp code than Emacs does.

Comment The movie sucked, even for fanboys/girls.. (Score 3, Insightful) 407

so get over it already. DC just has a lousy track records of making a universe of films with continuity that are, you know, well-scripted and fun to watch.

I also thought the new Star Trek was mediocre at best. I was looking for some of the wonder and excitement that the reboot brought to the screen (minus lens flare) and I got wonder alright -- I wandered into the movie and then I wandered out when it was over. No excitement for the villain, the plot overall, but there were at least a couple of funny moments.

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