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Comment We dont really need them in this avatar.. (Score 1) 87

How difficult is it to take out phone and check time anyway. Other use cases like checking for the caller while driving can be handled by voice apps..or phone holders etc.. Unless however, they are completely eliminating the need to carry a cell phone. And that will require a lot more thought than just . May be pair the watch with Google Glass say. A fundamental shift is required. Something tells me I need another pot...

Comment You guys know what... (Score 1) 365

The textbooks you read in school are the same that are taoght in India and China..their secondary school has equal calculus (may be more)...by the time their students post-graduate, more than half of Americans have dropped out anyway. The time has already shifted. It is only the said infrastructure such as clean water, electricity., roads bridges etc..that people from brilliant talent from likes of India and China keeps flowing into America. And this taleny in return keeps your rovers landing on Mars...Saturn ..wherever now and in future. So try this - give them a place no where to go but stay in their respective countries. I say America got most 20 years before being technologically ghosted. I give America only 5 years in case they stop maintaining their infrastructure today. Cheers!

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: To publish change logs or not? 1

Linnerd writes: A software company I work for has decided to no longer publish change logs when updated versions of the software are made available.

A change log consists of sections pulled directly from the issue management system that is automatically processed into a spreadsheet. The spreadsheet can be sorted/viewed by many criteria, such as date of the fix, component affected, severity and more.

There usually are a fair number of entries (sometimes more than 1000), because each update published contains all the accumulated changes made since some base release in the past and the change log has entries for everything from major bugs to minor improvements to documentation changes and spelling errors fixed.

The main reasons for pulling the change logs was the fear of putting the software in a bad light and risking ridicule, especially from the competition.

Although I can follow these arguments up to a point, I've personally always been more comfortable with software that had explicit and detailed change logs: Errors and bugs happen, whether they are communicated or not, and I'd rather know what was changed than blindly install some patch without knowing if it's relevant for the issues I'm trying to solve.

What is your opinion? Should change logs / errors / bugs be communicated openly?

How is this handled in the companies you work for?

Can you provide publicly available references on the pros and cons of open and honest communication of changes and bug fixes, especially in commercial environments?

Submission + - Astronomers solve temperature mystery of planetary atmospheres (washington.edu)

vinces99 writes: An atmospheric peculiarity the Earth shares with Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune is likely common to billions of planets, University of Washington scientists have found, and knowing that may help in the search for potentially habitable worlds. For more than a century it has been known that there is a point in Earth's atmosphere at about 40,000 to 50,000 feet, called the tropopause, where the air stops cooling and begins growing warmer, In the 1980s, NASA spacecraft discovered tropopauses in the atmospheres of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, as well as Saturn’s largest moon, Titan — and all occurring at about one-tenth of the air pressure at Earth’s surface.

A new paper by UW astronomer Tyler Robinson and planetary scientist David Catling, published online Dec. 8 in the journal Nature Geoscience, uses basic physics to show why this happens, and suggests that tropopauses are probably common to billions of thick-atmosphere planets and moons throughout the galaxy. “The explanation lies in the physics of infrared radiation,” said Robinson. Atmospheric gases gain energy by absorbing infrared light from the sunlit surface of a rocky planet or from the deeper parts of the atmosphere of a planet like Jupiter, which has no surface. The research shows that at high altitudes atmospheres become transparent to thermal radiation due to the low pressure. The findings could be used to extrapolate temperature and pressure conditions on the surface of planets and work out whether the worlds are potentially habitable — the key being whether pressure and temperature conditions allow liquid water on the surface of a rocky planet.

Submission + - Xen to Become Linux Foundation Collaborative Project (linuxfoundation.org)

freshlimesoda writes: The Xen Project is an open source virtualization platform licensed under the GPLv2 with a similar governance structure to the Linux kernel. Designed from the start for cloud computing, the project has more than a decade of development and is being used by more than 10 million users. As the project experiences contributions from an increasingly diverse group of companies, it is looking to The Linux Foundation to be a neutral forum for providing guidance and facilitating a collaborative network.

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