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Comment Somewhat cheap - Sounds fine. (Score 1) 249

I spent the most that I felt needed to sound 'fine' to me. What's with the pairing of subjective terms? What I spent could be seen as a lot (to someone who's never bought audio equipment) or a super-budget (to an audiophile).

  • Onkyo TX-8255 receiver - $120
  • Pioneer SP-BS22-LR Bookshelf speakers - $126
  • Audio Technica AT-LP60 - $100

I've also got an audio interface separate from the built-in one for my laptop, but I only use it for recording.

You could certainly go cheaper (laptop -> active speakers or cheapo turntable with speaker built into them) or way way more expensive (audiophile-quality).

Comment Fluxbox (Score 1) 611

I quite enjoy Fluxbox on my Linux desktop. It's more intuitive to me than xmonad and relatively minimalist. I like the shade window functionality and it doesn't have anything that gets in my way. On my Linux desktop I pretty much only run Firefox, xterm, and IntelliJ IDEA. On my laptop where I do more "multimedia" things, I like OS X.

Comment Call me old fashioned... (Score 1) 327

No thanks... I already avoid Chrome because I'm don't like that it doesn't have the usual title bar. Even more annoying that Firefox and Opera followed suit. I can't think of any other programs that do this on OS X. This behaviour is annoying to me because I often have many tabs open and this makes it hard to read the entire title of the current page. So, this leaves me with Safari. I like Chrome's approach of each tab having its own separate thread, but I just can't get over this lack of title bar.

Comment Unsubscribe or filter (Score 1) 388

I have the same problem. There's at least two dozens distinct individuals who have had emails erroneously addressed to my inbox.

For automated emails that offer an easy link to unsubscribe or dissociate my email address from that account, I use the provided link. Those are pretty easy.

Sometimes people register for paid services that send a monthly bill and it comes to my email address. They may or may not be of English origin. For these, I just add a filter or rule to my email provider or client to just delete them or move them. Communicating with someone, possibly in another language, possibly requiring lots of bureaucratic red tape, is not really worth it. If they care about it enough, it's their responsibility to fix it.

The most annoying case is when a large group of friends start an email thread with a whole bunch of different people in the "to" or "cc" field. Asking them to correct the email address is pretty much an exercise in futility, since all it takes is one person to hit 'reply to all' and your email address is back on the thread. For these, I just block every recipient on the thread.

I've never had the problem of someone already having registered my email. One way around it would be to set up another email address that just forwards to your actual email address.

Comment Re:A smart watch? (Score 3, Insightful) 260

That's silly, plenty of people still wear watches. Your hypothesis might hold for a small demographic of the younger generation who are particularly technically inclined, but even I know of multiple Microsoft and Amazon employees who would never be caught without their smartphones, yet still wear a watch; partly for the practicality and partly for style. And they need not be some gaudy Rolex to achieve that. On the note of practicality, I'm a bit behind the latest tech trends and only recently switched to a smartphone, but now I'm considering a watch for one simple pragmatic reason: watches don't have a maximum battery life of two days. Speaking of that, if this 'smart watch' has such limited battery, I imagine it'd be an instant deal-breaker for many people.

Comment Last generation when computers made you a geek (Score 2) 632

I don't have a super old school story to tell, but me and my friends, we often think of ourselves as one of the last generations that didn't grow up with the Internet and computers surrounding every aspect of life. I'm 24 now and went through the public school system in Ontario, Canada between 1994 until 2005.
br> Around the age of five, my dad brought home a 486 DX with 8 MB of RAM. I quickly became the primary user of it. There were computers at school, even as early as second grade, but it was primarily a toy for learning math, playing with art programs, using Microsoft Works, and learning typing. In the second grade I had a reputation in class for being extremely proficient with the keyboard. I think I hit maybe 40-50 WPM, which was impressive for my age back then. Nothing really interesting happened with computers throughout elementary school.

Then in middle school, I was at a school kind of reputed for technology. We played with Flash, a lot of MS Office, and a lot of CorelDRAW, which was kind of like Adobe Illustrator. There was a 'web team' extracurricular activity, which consisted of maybe the top ten to fifteen computer geeks of the middle school. That was mainly doing a little bit of HTML and a Macromedia Dreamweaver. And a lot of Unreal Tournament in our off time. We got to stay out of the cold winters in the computer lab to play with computers. Around this time I was experimenting with Linux at home so I would often putty to my home machine and go on IRC, which lead most classmates to think I was some sort of computer hacker.

In high school, computer classes was actually a kind of step back compared to middle school. I don't think the mandatory classes ever went beyond MS Office. We also did some research for science classes and such using computer. In grade 11 was when you could actually take a course called "Computer Science." My teacher taught us Visual Basic. The focus was making a usable UI most of the time. Rarely was there any math or any theoretical CS involved. It seemed like the provincial curriculum didn't really specify what exactly this course was meant to teach because a friend at another school was learning basic AI concepts and programmed a tic-tac-toe game.

By the end of high school, the closest thing to real computer science we had done was a VB6 program was computed steps in the Goldbach Conjecture. Anyone who was truly interested in computer science had self-learned skills that far outstripped the curriculum. When I entered university as a computer science student, the difference was staggering. I had probably been in the top three most respected computer geeks in high school, but I was absolutely average when I reached my university. I thought I was a real ace at computer science before, but there, I realized I had only been a child who had just experimented with programming in utterly nonsensical approaches...

Comment Redhat, Mandrake, Debian, Slack, Windows, OS X (Score 1) 867

Started around 2002 with Redhat 5.2 and then some version of Mandrake. I had a 56.6k WinModem back then, which I couldn't use on either Linux distro. I found an old 28.8k hardware modem and hooked it up to that, but it wasn't very practical. About a year later I got broadband, so I went back to experimenting with Linux; can't remember which ones I experimented with but I ended up with Debian potato or woody for a few years, before I switched to Slackware for fun. I think the big motivation for my choice of OS back then was experimentation and learning about Linux.

Around 2006 I got a laptop which just was a nightmare to work with any Slackware so I mainly used Windows. It had become too painful to try to make Linux work on it, but I had access to Ubuntu and Solaris at my university's machines so it was not all bad. In 2009 I got a Macbook, and OS X does everything that I had once wanted from Linux so I've been sticking with that since then. And it is pretty, graphically. So in this 'era' of my OS choices, I was mainly driven by picking something that works for my needs, without being a pain to set up.

For work at an enterprise and as a research assistant I've also been using RHEL9 and Ubuntu, but that is not really by choice. If I threw away my Macbook and got a PC laptop today, I might go with Archlinux, since its orientation towards a simple design seems appealing to me.

Comment Re:Why do intelligent people (continue to) use FB? (Score 2) 155

Not having Facebook would seriously inhibit my social life. It is hard to avoid it when the vast majority of your social circle uses it to communicate and plan events. I try to limit what I share, what information I put on it, and avoid associating my other online accounts with Facebook, but I can't control what others put up about me...

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