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Comment LTE eats battery, texting over wifi is better (Score 1) 68

I work in a lead shielded nuclear bunker and having my cell radio on all day just eats my battery. Instead, I use iMessage to text to the happy Apple folks and Google Hangouts to text to the people with the exploding phones, flip phones, and even one person with a Windows 10 Phone. It's all good, since I can text over wifi for free. I have wished for a iMessage to non-iMessage gateway but none exist.

Most people are happy to pay crazy phone bills each month, but I limit mine to $20 or less each month with TING.

Charging for SMS is a huge scam by the phone companies. Anytime I can communicate without them the happier (and richer) I am.

I won't wade into the iPhone vs. non-iPhone battle, but I just picked up an iPhone 6S and can't believe the power in that phone. I am old techie from C64/Amiga days and never would have imagined a 2Ghz CPU with a 4K camera on a device that has a 2-day battery life. I realize this is common place today, but all of our phones are a triumph to human engineering. I just wish we could use them for something useful.

Submission + - Apple removes ESC key new Macbook "Pro" ( 2

fyngyrz writes: The Mac "Pro's" ESC key, used by many at the console / shell level, has apparently succumbed to overwhelming... courage. Er, design intent. Yeah, that's it. You have to admit, Apple is brave. No console-friendly person will be happy with this. I suspect that will be true to a degree where they'll be happy with... something other than a Macbook "Pro." BTW, those aren't "scare" quotes. Those are "no, wrong word" quotes. I could have gone with "pro[sic]", but... oy. Oh. And hey. You didn't want function keys, did you? Of course not... Okay, one hopes these missing features will at least sometimes, possibly, appear on the new touch bar, there to blunt the ends of your fingers as they use a key-striking habit to stomp on a touch surface.

Comment Re:Scripts on web pages, take ages to finish page. (Score 2) 314

don't run an ad blocker and I see the behavior OP complained about every day .

Yes, that was my point. It's the ads, you see. In case it's not clear, the problem you're having? It's the ads. They're what's causing that problem. The ads. In case it wasn't clear.

Comment Re:Accessibility options (Score 3, Informative) 314

But the people who became web designers were formerly page layout designers. They revolted. They were used to printed paper, where they controlled everything the reader saw - fonts, font sizes, text wrap around photos, columns, etc. Their ego couldn't stand ceding some of that control to the reader, so they fought tooth and nail to bring that control back to themselves.

In the early days this wasn't true. Good print designers know how to choose fonts and whitespace that will scale properly and keep a nice layout as you scale font size up and down. It was the managers and PMs, insisting that the web page look exactly like they wanted, on every monitor, like it was a magazine page. "The name of the company can't be smaller than 2 inches, the branding spec says so!" "On what size monitor?" "Don't bother me with your geeky trivialities!".

The "designers" willing to put up with that shit gradually drove out the old heads who knew what actually looked good. Now fashion has replaced 3 centuries of science about legibility.

Comment Re: Oh noes!!!!11111 (Score 1) 523

The fact that the participation of women varies hugely between cultures (for example, in India, Korea, Israel, Iran, and Lithuania, Romania, it's a lot higher) implies strongly that external factors are far more of a reason why we have so few women than anything biological.

Only in the most shallow analysis.

In many countries, a software development job with a multinational corp is the best job you can hope for unless your parents are politically connected. Better pay and batter status than doctor or lawyer. Here in the US, that's not true, and so women talented enough to pursue the best job around do something else like doctor or lawyer (or vet, which is a better job than doctor these days after malpractice insurance).

Based on my unscientific survey of quite a few interns from India, the vast majority of them entered the field of software development "because my parents chose it for me", male or female. You get that in the US occasionally for doctors or lawyers, of course.


Internet is Becoming Unreadable Because of a Trend Towards Lighter, Thinner Fonts ( 314

An anonymous reader writes: The internet is becoming unreadable because of a trend towards lighter and thinner fonts, making it difficult for the elderly or visually-impaired to see words clearly, a web expert has found. Where text used to be bold and dark, which contrasted well with predominantly white backgrounds, now many websites are switching to light greys or blues for their type. Award winning blogger Kevin Marks, founder of Microformats and former vice president of web services at BT, decided to look into the trend after becoming concerned that his eyesight was failing because he was increasingly struggling to read on screen text. He found a 'widespread movement' to reduce the contrast between the words and the background, with tech giants Apple, Google and Twitter all altering their typography. True black on white text has a contrast ratio of 21:1 -- the maximum which can be achieved. Most technology companies agree that it is good practice for type to be a minimum of 7:1 so that the visually-impaired can still see text. But Mr Marks, found that even Apple's own typography guidelines, which recommended 7:1 are written in a contrast ratio of 5.5:1.

Elon Musk's Mars Colony Would Have a Horde of Mining Robots ( 215

An anonymous reader shares an Engadget report: If it wasn't already clear that Elon Musk has considered virtually every aspect of what it would take to colonize Mars, it is now. As part of his Reddit AMA session, the SpaceX founder has revealed that his vision of a permanent colony would entail a huge number of "miner/tunneling droids." The robots would build large volumes of underground pressurized space for industrial activity, leaving geodesic domes (made of carbon fiber and glass) for everyday living. As a resident, you might never see the 'ugly' side of settling the Red Planet. Musk also explained how his colony would get to the point where it can reliably refuel spacecraft all by itself. Dragon capsules would serve as scouts, helping find the "best way" to extract water for fuel reactions. An unmanned Heart of Gold spaceship would then deliver the basics for a propellant plant, while the first crewed mission would finish that plant. After that, SpaceX would double the number of flights between each ideal Earth-Mars rendezvous (every 26 months) until the colony can reliably produce fuel by itself. Oh, and don't worry about today's Falcon 9 rockets being consigned to the history books. Although the main booster for interplanetary travel will "have an easier time of things," Musk believes that the final iteration of Falcon 9 (Block 5) could be used "almost indefinitely" if properly maintained. Production on Block 5 should fly in the next 6 to 8 months.

Comment Re:I say BS (Score 1) 168

If you don't want to be homeless, build a house.

Homeless generally means both "not a landowner" and "has no money" which prevents the former even if they wanted to go there.

If you don't want to be hungry, go fishing.

Buy a license, buy a pole, collect bait somehow, weather considerations, legal locations, seasons, specific game fish, prepping, finding wood to cook with...

If you want to survive, get your ass moving instead of wasting the day pseudo-intellectualizing or lamenting about the unfairness of nature that has always existed since the beginning of time when it blew the first human village up with a volcano and the laws of the universe didn't even blink, let alone give a shit.

No, the universe doesn't, for sure. But people who are worth a shit, do give a shit.

WRT "get moving", to quote a fine summary of just one aspect of the problem, "I'm pretty sure McDonald's has an underwear inside the pants policy" (Source here at 3:31 but by all means, check out the whole performance, it's pretty much spot on from beginning to end.)

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