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Comment Re:VCR didn't compete against DVD (Score 1) 131

DVD recorders won't record commercial tapes encoded with macrovision, so it will only work with personal home recordings. Most video capture cards will also reject the video input if it's copy protected with macrovision. There are ways around this, of course, but it requires time, effort, and money to do so.

Comment Re:Dark matter ? (Score 1) 184

To be fair, scientists once believed that there was a "luminous ether" that propagated light as well, even running elaborate experiments to prove it's existence. It just "had" to exist, since science at the time couldn't think of any other solution to the problem. Of course, they eventually figured out that light acts differently than other energy waves and dropped the matter entirely. The "dark matter" issue feels very much like the luminous ether... something that "exists" if only because the current models don't work very well otherwise.

Submission + - One Million School Children Get Free BBC Micro:bit Computer In Coding Drive

Mickeycaskill writes: Every Year 7 student in England and Wales, Year 8 student in Northern Ireland and S1 student in Scotland will be handed, for free, a BBC micro:bit computer specially designed to help pupils learn to code.

Micro:bits, which are smaller than the size of a credit card and can be hooked up to a mobile app or accessed via the Internet, will be delivered nationwide through schools and made available to home-schooled students over the course of the next few weeks.

The students are able to keep their devices as their own, meaning they can work with the device for homework, in school holidays, and use it for more applications as their grasp on coding increases.

The initiative follows on from the BBC’s Micro programme that was introduced in the 1980s, and sees a partnership between the BBC and some of the world’s most notable technology companies such as ARM, Microsoft, and Samsung.

The computer will hope to emulate the Raspberry Pi, of which more than eight million have been sold.

Comment Re:Wasn't the C64 just a BASIC interpreter anyways (Score 1) 119

Yes and no. GW-BASIC and especially QBASIC had their own way of doing things, but they were essentially backwards compatible with the the 8-bit Microsoft basic found on Apple, TRS-80, and many other microcomputers of the era (as long as you didn't do machine specific graphics and sound).

Comment Re:tom (Score 2) 119

Windows 95 came with QBasic built in. QBaisic was a more advanced version of GW-Basic/BasicA that was part of the original IBM PC. It was basically an interpreter only version of Microsoft's QuickBasic. It believe it was was introduced with the release of DOS 5.0. It featured the 1985 ANSI extensions (no line numbers necessary, long variable names, and labels), but it was fully backwards compatible with GW-Basic. It was a DOS program, so it was never promoted or advertised as a feature of Windows 95, but it was still there. I believe that they continued to include it through Windows 98. QBasic would have had little trouble running the old line numbered programs that are in these books. So, you did have a chance to use those books. You just didn't know it! :-)

Comment Re:Aural bypass (Score 1) 135

There are brainstem auditory implants that are for people with actual nerve deafness (damage to the 8th cranial nerve, not the cochlea as is the case for most types of deafness)... Since this type of deafness is quite rare (they would only consider something like this for bilateral losses), very few people have them. They are only available via clinical trial in the US for children, but they are approved in Europe.

Comment I don't know if this counts or not... (Score 3, Interesting) 135

...but, back in high school, one of my science teachers glued a tiny mirror to the center of a speaker cone. He then reflected a laser off of it onto the wall. When he played music though it, the vibrations made a very cool low cost laser show! Now that lasers are cheap and plentiful, I've always meant to recreate that laser show. One of these decades, I'll get around to it! ;-)

Comment Re:Huh? (Score 1) 154

A surface phone will be running on an Intel x86 chipset, like a surface or a laptop would. That means it's a full fledged PC in your pocket that can run real windows 10 applications straight out of the box like you would on a PC. That's the difference between the "surface" phone and a current Windows phone--mainly, the chipset. It's a big deal. It certainly gives the surface phone a unique selling point that other phones can't offer.

Comment Re:The Original Article is Pure Crap (Score 2) 165

I would disagree with you wholeheartedly... I would be potentially very interested in a "surface" phone, and I think a lot of other people would be too... depending on how it eventually worked, of course. It could potentially be a gamechanger or it could be another flop, but Microsoft is at least going outside the box to try and do something different. There is a decent demand for surface tablets. I don't see why there wouldn't be similar demand for a surface phone if it is done correctly.

Comment Re:It's almost 2016... (Score 1) 95

Oh wait... this is a different Terrafugia model than the one I knew about earlier. This one actually looks like a flying car should look like and has four seats! I'm definitely interested now! I believe that this also only requires an ultralight flying license to fly.Of course, it's only a model at this point, but this is definitely more what people expect from a flying car!!

Comment It's almost 2016... (Score 1) 95

...and I'm still waiting for my flying car!!! Oh, wait!! :-P

I've been curious about this thing for some time now. It' certainly not the flying car that we imagined one would look like, but something that can be both driven and flown would be very useful and versatile--fly to an airport close to your destination and then drive the rest of the way. You'd still look like you're driving a UFO on the highway, but so what? If they ever make a 4 seat version of this, I'm in! The price isn't too bad, too, IIRC considering what it can do... Certainly cheaper than a real plane, and it runs on regular gas and can be parked in your driveway instead of renting out a hangar!

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