Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Comment Two answers: No and Yes (Score 1) 449

No. Mainstream computing is dull and boring and often frustrating.

Yes. Old time computing still exists, it just isn't mainstream anymore, it is fringe. My first computer required being soldered together from a kit. All personal computers required being soldered together from a kit. I think of the C64 as the third or fourth generation of hobby computers. But guess what: I'm still soldering together my own computers. And it's still fun, and it's still cool. It's just that now, what I do is so far from the mainstream that most people don't realize it is even possible.

Comment Ummm... wait... what agreements *are* in place? (Score 1) 247

So.... let's say I have a company with no agreement with the IOC to be a sponsor or any other thing. Said company can tweet what they damn well want. There is no agreement in place between IOC and said company, ergo, no agreement to either break or enforce. The IOC is firing blanks.

Comment A Budgee? Seriously???? (Score 1) 117

Ha, ha... ho, ho... ho, *snort*

I've see the Budgee in action. Or more precisely, in inaction. Or random action. It is poorly designed, cheaply made, and the software is unreliable. Also, the industrial design aesthetic of two asymmetric "eyes" recalls "Bill-the-Cat" from the old Bloom County cartoon.

Budgees shopping in Walmart == flying pigs.

Comment Re:I don't get it (Score 2) 238

Well, yes and no. YMMV.

1) Bring back the 17" Macbook Pro. Yes it's big and bulky but I'm willing to put up with that for the extra screen real estate.

Not for me, thanks.

2) Bring back user upgradable memory. If it truly is a Macbook Pro then it should come with 8GB minimum and I should be able to plug in up to 32GB (or maybe even 64) as and when I need it. If the laptop was aimed at home users I could maybe see not wanting them to be able to do this but I'm a professional and I know how to open laptops and upgrade them. I should be able to do this on my own and without a trip to the Genius lab.

Well, having run the numbers on other products, I know that every connector is a reliability liability. If the memory is soldered in and factory tested, the machine will be more reliable for you, and have fewer warranty issues for Apple. I'm with Apple on this one.

3) Ports - lots of them. Wireless is nice but sometimes I prefer a hardwired network connection. Gimme a network port. I also need a couple of HDMI ports and at least 3 USB ports. Why not throw in a Firewire port too? I know that it's kind of old technology now but a lot of people still have firewire drives and would like to be able to plug them in.


4) Bootcamp. Why not have the option to have Bootcamp pre-installed if you know you're going to use it? Or maybe a prebuilt virtualized Windows. Yes, some of use would prefer to do it ourselves but others might appreciate the convenience.

You have a good idea here, although for my use I want a Linux VM.

5) I'm tired of the race to the thinnest laptop. I want something with a battery big enough to last the whole day, or more, doing intensive processing. If that adds a half pound or a half inch so be it. This is supposed to be a big boy laptop, not some hipster toy.


6) 4K display. Could you imagine a 4K display on a sweet 17" laptop with a matte finish? Heaven.

I can imagine it, but I probably wouldn't be able to see the fine detail because my vision just isn't that good any more. But I *do* want the ability to drive a 4K external monitor the size of a football pitch right out of the box, using some kind of modern video subsystem.

Comment Feinstein is evil (Score 5, Insightful) 150

Why is it that everything I hear from Feinstein is anti-liberty, anti-individual, and pro-goverment-power? She is the modern poster child for exactly the kind of person that the founders fought the revolution in order to rid themselves of. Be gone, you power-mad, anti-liberty, disaster of a legislator.

Comment Da Vinci is a remote, I've played with one (Score 5, Informative) 82

The Da Vinci is a remotely operated laproscopy tool, not an autonomous machine. Remote usually means "across the room". I got to play with one for about 30 minutes. Placing little tiny rubber bands on tiny latex cones. It takes a lot of practice. It would take less time to learn than traditional laproscopy, but still a lot of training -- after you are already a board-certified surgeon. What it does is give the surgeon much finer control and better viewing. The camera inside the surgery zone is awesome. The surgeon can control the motion multiplier, so 5 inches on his controls is 1/2 inch inside the patient.

But here is what sells Da Vincis: The tremor filter. Everyone develops micro-tremors as they age. This is usually what ends the career of laproscopic surgeons. The Da Vince extends the career of expert laproscopic surgeons by 8 to 10 years. Do the math -- spending a million dollars on a Da Vinci is an absolute no-brainer for all involved.

Comment Re:Lucy Koh the Troll (Score 1) 92

Ha, good one. If you follow the 9th Circuit (or the 9th circus, as it is commonly called among attorneys) you could be forgiven if you thought that trolling the legal system is a litmus test for getting *any* judgeship in the 9th circuit.

If you look at the history, though, you will see that Lucy Koh has over the years had many high-profile technology cases in her court. She is probably one of the most technologically clue-full judges serving anywhere. This ruling is the result of having a case heard by someone who has a reasonable understanding of the subject matter.

Comment Looking for Bob Newhart (Score 1) 440

So this makes me think of a story about the comedian Bob Newhart. Hopefully I don't mangle the details too badly.

Before he started making money from comedy, he had a day job, working for (I think it was) Maryland's state run unemployment assistance department as a clerk. The public assistance in those days was US$80 per week (we've had a bit of inflation since then). He was processing these people's applications to get $80 a week for being unemployed -- while being paid (IIRC) $82.50 per week. So he quit and went on unemployment so that he could work on his routine full time.

Clearly, YC is looking for the Bob Newharts of the world. They might be fewer and farther between than YC imagines, methinks.

If you need a distraction today: For some of his earlier work, look up the comedy album "Something Like This" and listen to the routine: "Introducing Tobacco to Civilization" -- which consists of one side of telephone conversation between Sir Walter Raliegh and the office back home in London.

Comment Re:Who cares if they are wrong? (Score 1) 102

A good VC brings more than money. A good VC brings connections, advice, and savvy. A board that consists of nothing but "dumb money" is a disaster waiting to happen. Founders need to pick their VC's as carefully as VC's pick founders, and need to avoid taking money from the clueless and greedy. Yes, there are clueless and greedy VC's infesting Sand Hill Road. There are also smart, helpful, mentoring VC's on Sand Hill Road -- those are the ones to go with. There are also VC's that are still smart, but are no longer hungry and can no longer be bothered with being mentors -- let them in on your B or C round. There is more money chasing deals than there are good deals today, especially now that the unicorns are deflating and the VC's are refocusing on substance a bit more. Somebody with a good package can be choosy.

Slashdot Top Deals

When it is incorrect, it is, at least *authoritatively* incorrect. -- Hitchiker's Guide To The Galaxy