Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


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 Re: May be a dumb question (Score 2) 90

Because they know that people don't always use the chargers that came with their devices. People buy extras so they can have one at home and one at work. They borrow chargers from friends. Sometimes, they even plug their phones into their computers to charge.

If you plug a devices that was designed around the USB Power Delivery spec into a charger that was designed around a proprietary rapid charging standard, (or vice versa) the two devices aren't going to understand each-other correctly during the process of negotiating charge voltage, current limiting, and which data lines (if any) to use to supplement charge current.

It would REALLY suck your USB standard phone signaled the charger that it wants 5V@3A and the charger, which uses a proprietary charge protocol, misunderstood the message and not only upped VBUS to 20V, but put 20V across all of the data pairs as well.

If that were to happen and the phone were to be irreparably damaged, the blame is going to get spread around between the charger and phone manufacturers. And some people are going to look at the situation and switch to iPhones because "at least they don't have this problem."

Comment Re:WebDAV (Score 2) 212

I agree with this AC.

If using SVN directly doesn't fit your needs -- if you REALLY want the transparency of a shared filesystem (as opposed to explicitly saying "synchronize the contents of this directory with the image on the server" ) WebDAV builds that on top of SVN. And if you want access controls, Apache's mod_auth provides them. Encryption? mod_ssl.

Comment Look closely at your requirements. (Score 1) 257

Depending on the regulations attached to your specific industry and how your company chooses to cope with them, "being able to maintain the application" may not be sufficient. If something goes sufficiently pear-shaped to get a government agency involved, they may demand that you be able to produce not just the source code used to create any given release, but the combined libraries, toolchains, etc.

Hell, you *MAY* even be required to completely and faithfully recreate your entire development environment as it was on the date of sign-off. Only really feasible way, imho, to ensure that you can comply with that sort of a request is if you were to do all of your development inside a VM and take a snapshot when each release is blessed. (or at any other milestone)

Comment Re:Fire-Resistant Safe (Score 3, Interesting) 446

You (and other commenters) laugh at this idea,

Admittedly, a DIY USB-connected solution will likely compromise the thermal insulation and waterproofing of the safe to some degree... But COTS USB-connected fire safes *DO* exist.

For one example:

Comment Re:Better to cancel rather than fail. (Score 2) 70

They HAD that ability, but they pissed it away. NASA refused to listen to engineers and the contractors who were telling them that the O-Rings, as designed, had a high risk of failure given the severe cold that day.

One of the o-rings DID fail, but not until the shuttle was already in the air. At that point, it's WAY too late to scrub.

Comment Re:A more important issue... (Score 2) 246

Clearly, you never read the EULA, or even the Warranty statement.

Microsoft only promises that it will work as intended for the first 90 days after it's installed. After 90 days, if Microsoft decides to tell you to piss off, you're SOL, because the software is presented to you AS-IS.

During the warranty period, if you have a problem, Microsoft will, AT THEIR SOLE DISCRETION, either refund the money you paid for the software (if you actually paid anything for it. If it came preinstalled on your computer, you paid nothing for the software - the computer maker did. You have to talk to them) or they can choose to fix the problem.

If you're outside of the warranty period and you don't have an active support contract, Microsoft doesn't have to care about your problems at all.


  1. Win 8
  2. Win 7 home premium
  3. Win XP

Comment Re:Intel (Score 1) 294

Did you know that Intel's chipsets include a very respectable ethernet controller? Have for a long time. Most motherboard manufacturers don't use them, though. For some reason, they'd rather bolt a suck-tastic Realtek controller onto one of the PCIe lanes, instead. Buying Intel-made boards is about the only way to get one that uses the on-chipset controller.... Unless you're going with an AMD CPU.

Comment Re:and this is news why? (Score 1) 205

The way those tools work is that they write a customized firmware image onto the controller. (or an EEPROM, or the start of the flash) This way, if you don't need the thing to impersonate a CDROM, that code doesn't get loaded onto the chip. Specifics about partition sizes, read-only settings, etc, get tacked onto the end of the appropriate image as a data block.

If the chip manufacturer released a firmware update to address a bug in a previous release, the same tools can be used to install the firmware updates. You just have to replace the packaged images.

But you don't HAVE to use the bundled firmware images. A little legwork (or disassembly of the bundled firmwares) will yield all you need to know to write your own firmware for the thing that does whatever you want it to. Frequently, like the MV6208, the controller is built around an 8051-derivative. ( ref: ) knowing that, you can write your own custom firmware that enumerates as a second keyboard to try and run commands. Or whatever else you want to make it do.

Comment Re:and this is news why? (Score 2) 205

A typical USB stick or a webcam don't have hardware to permit firmware upgrades, even though the silicon inside could be theoretically upgradable.

How uninformed you are! is a discussion of "production tools" for USB flash drives.

These tools are specific to the controller in the flashdrive (chipsbank, micov, etc) and allow you to do things like change what size the drive reports itself as, load files onto the thing and make it behave as a read-only flash drive, load files on and make it behave as a USB CD/DVD-ROM drive with a disk preloaded, make it behave as a single flashdrive with multiple partitions, make it come up on the USB bus as a compound device consisting of any combination of the above.

My company uses these sorts of tools to distribute software on read-only flashdrives.

Comment Re:Price is reasonable - $35, not $90 (Score 1) 54

That's why it's important to actually read what they wrote instead of just stopping at the first "red flag" you come to.

Why flexible funding? We choose flexible funding because we want to give people a chance to contribute to the software as early as possible. The hardware part is already done and we have sold units to existing customers who were very happy about it. Specially for this campaign we made a new revision ready for mass production so we can sell it at an even better price than we already had in our shop:

They already have finalized hardware in production. They're not trying to fund hardware development and production. They've already done that. They're using indiegogo as an advertising channel and as a secondary storefront.

Comment Re:Just 2 models of Audi? (Score 5, Informative) 61

The steering wheel.

Most vehicles (if not all) being marketed for consumer road use have power steering. The standard (in the USA, if not globally) is to use hydraulics to help you move the wheels back and forth as you steer.

Those two models of Audi use electric motors to provide power assist, instead. That makes it MUCH easier to interface the control system.

Slashdot Top Deals

Like punning, programming is a play on words.