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Comment Re:battery life a braindead argument (Score 4, Interesting) 190

Falsehood #2. Wifi is still a pretty uncommon feature, and even when present is fairly problematic, finicky, and requires an unreasonable number of steps to initiate.

Actually, I've never found it finicky. The problem is that the actual maximum speed of wireless is GARBAGE for transferring photos, much less video. Wi-Fi is more than an order of magnitude too slow to be practical. Anybody who thinks otherwise has almost certainly never shot photos with anything more capable than a toy iPhone camera.

To give some context, my brand-new, high-end 5D Mark IV shoots photos that can be from 30–70 megabytes each depending on RAW settings. Even though it supports 802.11n, if memory serves, all devices in IBSS mode (without infrastructure Wi-Fi) are limited to 802.11g speeds. So in practice, unless you bring a Wi-Fi router along with you (no camera supports the captive portal Wi-Fi that you'll find in every hotel on the planet), you'll be limited to only 54 megbits per second.

At 54 megabits per second, transferring a typical daily run of 500 photos at 70 megabytes each takes almost an hour and a half, and that's actually slightly optimistic. I do use the wireless functionality to transfer a few pics at a time from my camera to my iPhone while traveling so that I can quickly post pics from my real camera on Facebook. It works well for that, because I'm only grabbing five or six pics at a time, and I'm getting a much smaller JPEG copy instead of a RAW file.

At night, though, the flash card comes out of the camera and goes into the side of my laptop, where I spend only about four or five minutes to import that entire batch of photos. If Apple had bothered to keep their SD card reader hardware up-to-date, it would take under two minutes, but the two minutes saved isn't worth the hassle of trying to dig a flash card reader out of my bag.

With a laptop that lacks a flash reader, however, the entire equation changes. Suddenly, my choices are to either try to dig out an SD card reader (which will always be hard to dig out of a camera bag) or carry a retractable USB 3.0 cable (which turns out to be easier to put in a place where it is accessible, because it is so thin) and use the camera itself as a reader, albeit with the same poor performance as Apple's old SD card reader, and draining the camera battery the whole time. Both choices are approximately equally bad, and the decision to hobble their hardware by removing such a convenient way of importing content makes me seriously question Apple's commitment to the photography market.

Then again, I never used Aperture. If I had, I'd probably have much stronger negative comments....

And finally, Falsehood #5. What universe are you from? Have you even shopped for cameras ever? I cannot even fathom where you're pulling all this nonsense from.

Pretty much. Apart from cellular phones (where nobody uses the micro-SD slot anyway), pretty much the only cameras that use micro-SD are the little cameras built by GoPro. All pro cameras use either CF or full-size SD, because when the camera isn't a tiny little toy, the size savings of micro-SD aren't enough of a benefit to make up for the smaller contact size and the resulting decrease in reliability and robustness.

Nothing you say is true to the point where you're either delusional or trolling.

Trolling, I'd imagine. Either that or it's an Apple employee astroturfing. Hard to say which.

Comment Re:FAA wil not allow it (Score 1) 124

A flying vehicle adds 4 additional degrees of freedom (up-down, pitch, roll, yaw)... so much more that can go wrong.

Current flying vehicles have those extra degrees of freedom because of their design, but in principle, you could design a flying vehicle that has only one additional degree of freedom (altitude), keeping the vehicle approximately horizontal at all times and using horizontally oriented secondary fans to steer. And arguably, you should, because at that point, it would be much more practical for a driver to take control if needed.

Comment Re:Is it a car or a drone by another name? (Score 1) 124

A car that is light enough to get off the ground is too fragile to survive a collision of any consequence.

I think the key phrase is "Self-driving". If there's any significant collision risk, the car could simply go straight up to avoid it. Surviving on-ground collisions should be basically a non-goal at that point.

Comment Re:Not in the real world (Score 1) 124

- Pets (and children) that will be blown into lift jets

Only if they change the laws of physics. Lift jets push something up by blowing air downwards. They suck from the top. I mean, I suppose if you have pets and children in jetpacks, it might be a concern, but if your kids and pets are doing that sort of thing, you have bigger things to worry about then them getting sucked into my (hypothetical) flying car's engines. Just saying. :-D

Comment Re:Emergency response (Score 1) 124

Just about anyplace you could safely land a "flying car" you could also land a helicopter.

Not true. A helicopter can't be moving horizontally when it lands. A flying car with wheels could potentially be moving at 70+ MPH horizontally when it lands. Assuming they can avoid any blades that stick out beyond the sides of the vehicle, that design difference completely changes the equation.

Comment Re:Emergency response (Score 1) 124

You don't need strict maintenance, just strict altitude limits. A vehicle falling from twenty feet off the ground, assuming it is bottom-heavy and lands on the tires, almost certainly won't kill you. At fifty feet, it probably won't. At a hundred feet, you'll probably have a low survival rate unless you have a whole-car airbag or something.

As long as self-driving cars fly over existing motorways, and as long as cars underneath are smart enough to avoid being landed upon, you should be fine. And even if they do, there's probably some safe height where everyone would survive. Assuming the flying far is designed to be extremely light (for obvious reasons), I'd imagine twenty or thirty feet would probably be fairly safe.

Comment Re:Raspberry Pi (Score 1) 477

And considerably more powerful than a rpi B or zero, which are plenty sufficient for a great number of computing tasks, including state of the art engineering design work, scientific analysis, publication, etc.....

I use a first-gen Raspberry Pi Model B as my secondary DNS server. It has plenty of horsepower for that, and it probably draws less power than the charge circuit on the UPS it's attached to (which will power it for many hours beyond when my routing hardware goes black. Maybe I should rewire things. :-/ But I digress.

Comment Re: Why can't there be an open phone? (Score 1) 477

Because almost every other person I've met who has an interest in keeping platforms open wants to give up other rights that aren't important to them. Gun control and hate speech laws for instance.

In each case, the right must be balanced against the rights of others. Gun control infringes a right with the goal of preventing people from being killed. Hate speech laws are about limiting someone's right to incite others to violent acts. Open platforms must be balanced against the needs for the powerless (i.e. non-IT professionals) to be protected from malicious code.

All rights come with responsibilities, and all rights have limits beyond which the free exercise of those rights cannot be tolerated. Freedom is about drawing those lines sensibly to maximize rights without making it too easy for those with power to use those rights to infringe upon the rights of others. One would hope that everyone who has an interest in keeping platforms open also understands the other side, and is willing to find solutions that meet the needs of the other side without destroying the openness that they seek. If they are not, they will eventually lose those rights. That isn't fair, and it isn't just, but it is reality.

Comment Re: False premise (Score 3, Insightful) 477

Computing as a service is taking over. Why do your processing on a slow machine when you can have access to a remote rendering farm. This is the future.

Call me when I can push those 70 megabyte image files to the cloud for processing quickly enough and pull the resulting full-screen rendering quickly enough (without any compression artifacts) for that extra CPU speed in the cloud to beat the performance of local processing. Basically, the round-trip speed would need to be double-digit milliseconds, so on the order of 100 gigabit speeds... wirelessly... and full duplex.

At the current rate of progress, my great grandkids will be on Social Security before the cloud can replace local CPU horsepower, and I don't even have kids yet. The cloud might be the future, but from my perspective, it is the very, very distant future except in the context of software with very limited resource needs.

Comment Re:It might be something but it isn't anti-trust? (Score 1) 121

Additionally (and apologies for forgetting to add this yesterday), the real issue is not whether the author can deliberately write it in a portable way and reuse some of the code on another platform, but rather whether it is possible to write an app in such a way that the purchaser can then install that same app on the other platform without buying it again for the other platform. As long as that isn't possible, there's effectively no overlap between the iOS app market and the Android app market, making them separate markets in practice.

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