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Comment Re:Pinouts (Score 1) 615

RS232 an null-modems are mentioned in TFA, but I'd like to add a detail:
Most of the more hackerish students where I went (ca 1990) knew the minimal pinout for a null-modem by heart so we could improvise one with 3 wires and matches/paperclips/whatever. By the time we graduated LANs and to some degree internet mane that knowledge obsolete, but it sure did save the day a few times, typically for transferring files between different platforms with different floppy formatting.

I guess I'm about 10 years younger than you, and I had the same information memorized. But I guess I was using it more for working with lab equipment, as some sort of a project, rather than for the purpose of sharing data with friends in my dorm. I also used to have the correct ordering for Ethernet and cross-over cables memorized, but it's been a long time since I've had to put together any kind of cable myself. So either I use cables a lot less, or I'm just lazy, and find it easier to buy a ready-made cable instead.

Comment Re:Big Floppy is scamming you (Score 1) 615

Also there was: "no, a standard PC 3.5 inch floppy drive cannot format an apple floppy because the heads don't have enough travel range, so please read the FAQ and stop asking again and again on the USENET forums"

Really? Maybe things changed later on, because I remember buying a software package that allowed me to read/write Mac-formatted disks on my PC - I don't recall having any difficulty using it.

Comment Articles should fix inaccurate titles. (Score 1) 172

Thanks to a certain member of the US government, whose name I won't mention, the media is starting to realize they need to better fact-check the claims they are reporting. It's one thing to that someone said a thing. It's another to report that the thing is true (unless it's been verified as true). Fixing a headline doesn't require that much work. For example, instead of titling this "Verizon Introduces Unlimited Data Plans", it could be re-wored to "Verizon Advertises New Plan As Unlimited Data". There is a difference between the plan being actually unlimited, and Verizon advertising it as unlimited.

Comment who was expecting people to switch to apple? (Score 1) 191

Analogy: Let's say I'm a Windows user, and I have a laptop that I love. It turns out that laptop commonly catches fire. Based upon that data alone, what kind of laptop do you think I'll purchase next?

Most likely, I think I'd consider switching brands, but still go with a laptop that runs the same software that I like, and has a similar design. I suppose it's possible I'd switch to a Mac, but only if the Mac had the features I wanted, but it certainly wouldn't be my first instinct.

I'm not familiar with the Samsung Note 7, but I'm willing to bet it has some features that doesn't exist in an iPhone. Users who like those particular features will look for a phone that has them when buying a replacement. It wouldn't surprise me to hear that a few users switched to iPhone, but it would surprise me if most users did.

Comment Re:Sedation (Score 5, Funny) 164

I would pay a premium if an airline were to offer sedation flights. Receive an injection at the boarding gate. Get loaded into a tiny coffin. Wake up in the arrivals lounge of the new airport.

The airline saves money on food, air hosts, and can stack the passengers in like cordwood. I don't have to deal with crappy airline flights. Everybody wins, and the question of cell phone calls becomes moot.

Yeah, that sounds like a great idea until you consider how often airlines manage to misplace luggage, or lose it entirely.

Comment this is not a gift for employees (Score 5, Insightful) 399

The person doing the "giving" (Alphabet) gets the tax write-off, so the employees got absolutely nothing. Alphabet is in no way required to give their employees gifts, and I think it would have been better if they didn't. This is just an failed attempt at good PR. I'm happy Alphabet is donating to charity - they just shouldn't be pretending they're doing it for their employees.

Comment Re:sad, but inevitable (Score 1) 193

I'm not into tech news these days but has anyone been able to build a smartwatch with as long a battery life as the Pebbles? I always thought epaper was the right tech for smartwatches since because of size limitations they are restricted to a small battery

My Garmin smartwatch lasts over a week if I don't use the GPS.

Comment sad, but inevitable (Score 2) 193

I own an original Pebble from Kickstarter, which I bought before owning a compatible smartphone. Since I'm into running, I ended up replacing my Pebble with a Garmin smartwatch that also provided GPS and a heartrate monitor. (Were I not into running, I'd still be using that original Pebble, since it did everything else I wanted.) I feel like Pebble really started the smart watch revolution, and they did it right -- a simple watch that works with your phone, without attempting to replace it. Unfortunately for them, once the idea was out, any other company could copy it, and that's exactly what happened.

Sadly, the first to market is rarely the one who lasts the longest. Hydrox is gone, but Oreos are here to stay.

Comment Re:You can't use current votes to judge other syst (Score 1) 637

I get my information about the candidates from the news, internet, etc. not by attending political rallies.

and thats the problem. you are taking 3rd hand accounts and ignoring first hand accounts.

Are you suggesting that it would be better for me to drive possibly hundreds of miles to attend a political rally instead of reading the news, or reading the candidates' web sites? And what if new information comes to light between rallies? These "3rd hand accounts", as you call them (why do you call them 3rd, and not 2nd?) are the best methods I can think of to learn about a candidate when that candidate is not within driving distance of my home. But even if the rallies were convenient to me, I get the impression (please let me know if I am wrong about this) that they tend not to have a great deal of substance about specific policy decisions a candidate might make, or other specific information that I could easily look up online.

Comment Re:You can't use current votes to judge other syst (Score 1) 637

I can't think of anything Trump could have done to change my opinion.

Then at no point were you open-minded, or making a decision based on evidence. You had already come to a conclusion. That's dogma, not reason.

No, dogma would be assuming that just because I can't think of something, then it can't possibly exist. I am willing to admit that something might change my mind, but at this point, I am having great difficulty thinking of what that thing might be. (In the specific case of Trump, I say this because there aren't many agreeable things he can say that would negate the disagreeable ones.)

I get my information about the candidates from the news, internet, etc. not by attending political rallies.

Seems like a waste of time. If you had decided which candidate to vote for and nothing they could do would change your mind, then why bother? You could have spent that time indulging a hobby or vice, and your vote would have been the same regardless, right?

How is it a waste of time to learn about the candidates? If I never looked at any information about the candidates, then I'd have had no information upon which to base my vote.

Comment Re: Similar to my phone problems (Score 1) 236

Five years ago, paying a fee for unlimited texting sounds about right. Perhaps 10 years ago, it was more common that you'd be charged a fee (perhaps $0.10 or $0.20) for every text sent or received. For this reason, texting took quite a while to catch on in the US.

As for minutes, most companies no longer have a concept of "long distance" (international is still a thing). So for calls within the country, there is no distinction between "incoming minutes" and "outgoing minutes" -- they're just "minutes". If you're making an international call, I believe you're changed a per-minute surcharge. If you're receiving an international call, you are billed just for the "minutes" used, with no international surcharge.

Simple, right? Of course, none of this is law or anything, so it's really up to the individual companies to decide how to do things.

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