Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


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 Lots of blind opinions (Score 1) 283

Lotta people who haven't even seen it yet are sure rendering authoritative opinions. Me thinks the proper thing to do is to wait and see and decide for myself, or at least to talk to someone with real experience. I like Googles stuff in general and hope I would like their Chromebook and the Chrome O/S as well.

Comment Police in the hood (Score 5, Interesting) 201

I live in the toughest part of Minneapolis which is a fairly large city. It is bad enough so I have a carry permit and carry my pistol whenever I go out, even to mow the lawn. I've had to go for my weapon to avoid being robbed in the busy parking lot of a local store.

Watching drug deals going down is a normal thing to see, some bus shelters serve almost as drive through windows. The weekly police reports always reveal multiple felon in possession of firearms charges, guns taken away from juveniles, and people arrested for other crimes having weapons. Every week there are people shot, stabbed, and gravely injured.

I see police stops and searches all the time and sometimes stopped and filmed them. I keep a respectful distance, always make it apparent that I am taking pictures or video. I never try to interfere with or distract the officers while they are doing their job. I've never been asked to stop taking pictures, I've never been asked to step back or leave.

There are bloggers in this same neighborhood who have not had the same experience, some have had their phones/cameras seized as evidence, been threatened with arrest, and other things (or so they say on their blogs). But I have to say, these bloggers are loudmouths in their blogs and I have to believe that they probably push the envelope in real life as well.

Comment What I saw wasn't punnishment (Score 1) 948

I watched the video straight through, it was hard to do. What I saw was clearly not punishment, it was flat out inexcusable abuse.

His life as he previously knew it is over. And that is good. He deserves worse than he will get and I have confidence that Anonymous will be very effective. Then there are all the professional responsibility and ethics boards that are all chomping at the bit to get at him.

Comment Never say never (Score 1) 359

"640k ought to be enough for anyone." "There is a world-wide market for about fifteen computers."

Time and time again people have been deeply mistaken about anything having to do with the future of computing. The first time I saw a VGA display I was so smitten that I thought "this is the best it can be". Well I was wrong and so were a lot of other people who thought that there would never be a need for something more advanced than what technology has to offer today.

We expand technology by pushing against the current limits, finding things that cannot be done as the technology exists today and figuring out how to get it done and then proposing that solution as a standard. Meanwhile someone else has found a different solution and they too have submitted it as the standard. Then the wrestling begins perhaps one solution is accepted or maybe the solutions are married or an entirely different standard is found or maybe everything is rejected and they become proprietary products.

I'm 55 years old with lots of gray hair yet I still hold out hope that before I die I will be able to play, just once, in a holodeck, maybe with someone overseas. That could require something more than gig lines.

Comment Cautiously Optimistic (Score 4, Insightful) 345

I think graphene will probably fulfill some promises and fall flat with others. Since carbon (which graphene is) is a semiconductor I am more hopeful for it to become an efficient electronic resource. Because it is a semiconductor, I am less hopeful that it will become a better battery (carbon has been used in batteries for years but it's electrical leakage eventually drains an unused battery). As a material I expect that it will have the same shortcomings that carbon fiber has - in order to be strongest it needs to be pure which has proven difficult to achieve and therefore expensive. Graphene itself is expensive to manufacture. Is it even possible to chain it together to make long chains of it? I don't know but do know it is hard to do it with carbon fiber. What are the health consequences of making it, using it, or wearing it? So many things seem promising but end up being very bad (asbestos, lead, VOC's) that I am not sure it will launch. Seems like a submicroscopic sharp hard item may cause problems in the lungs.

Comment I can see an Abbott and Costello routine in here (Score 0) 109

IBM: "I'd like to File a Patent Application on how to get a Patent"
Patent Examiner: Okay but what is the patent application for exactly?
IBM: How to get a patent.
PE: Let me get this straight, you want a patent on patents?
IBM: Well not exactly, on how to get a patent.

I'm not feeling funny enough to take this all the way but you get the idea.

Comment SSDD (Score 1) 738

We've been on the verge of running out of oil, running out of fresh water, and killing our oceans how many times now? I have no doubt that some day humans will go the way of the dinosaurs but it will probably be a long time from now unless a killer virus morphs into something that spreads uncontrollably and kills off all of earth's connected humans. If that happens then the lost tribes in the Amazon and on some Asian islands will probably still be isolated enough and will be able to repopulate the earth.

Comment Re:Ugh, I unfortunately am a Minnesotan. (Score 1) 345

He has raised taxes on things like cigarettes and alcohol.

We have a crumbling infrastructre. The 35W bridge is simply a glaring example of that. The fact is that we are not doing a good job of maintaining what our forfathers built. Replacing is generally far more expensive than maintaining.

Yes today they would not build a bridge the same way they did in years past.

I'm pleased that our administration can sleep at night but I don't understand how they can do it. They are causing our neediest citizens a much poorer life. The cuts in welfare are deeply affecting people in nursing homes. It is forcing changes in their medication and even restricts some of the "hardware" that they need for health and comfort (catheters and so on). I know one person who was required to change plans only to discover that a specialist they needed could no longer treat them.

Comment Ugh, I unfortunately am a Minnesotan. (Score 3, Insightful) 345

I guess this news should have floored me but it doesn't. We have an entrenched administration that has the mantra "No new taxes" which has a nice sounding ring to it but the result has been less pretty (like a major interstate bridge that just decided to fall into the Mississippi river). I was drivng down the freeway today and the truck was bouncing around so badly I had to slow down (and I was not speeding).

How does all this relate to moving to the Microsoft cloud? I am sure the state is getting a low cost price to get them in the door. Once hooked the price will go up and it will need to be paid and some other service will be asked to do more with less. Maybe the old lady in the nursing home will have to cut back on someting like drugs or catheters. Maybe a school will have to put off buying science textbooks (for the tenth year in a row).


Terry Pratchett's Self-Made Meteorite Sword 188

jamie writes "Fantasy author Sir Terry Pratchett says he was so excited after being knighted by the Queen that he decided to make his own sword to equip himself for his new status... the author dug up 81kg of ore and smelted it in the grounds of his house, using a makeshift kiln built from clay and hay and fueled with damp sheep manure."

3 Drinks a Day Keeps the Doctor Away 470

Nzimmer911 writes "Heavy drinkers outlive non-drinkers according to a 20 years study following 1,824 people. From the article: 'But a new paper in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research suggests that - for reasons that aren't entirely clear - abstaining from alcohol does actually tend to increase one's risk of dying even when you exclude former drinkers. The most shocking part? Abstainers' mortality rates are higher than those of heavy drinkers.'"

Slashdot Top Deals

The trouble with opportunity is that it always comes disguised as hard work. -- Herbert V. Prochnow