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Comment Retail Hell, More Proof Cats Are Better Than Dogs! (Score 1) 249

There's a reason people that own one cat go crazy and have brain damage and end up owning more of those things.

The Toxoplasma Gondii requires cats to multiply, so it alters the behavior of its host rodents in order to steer them towards a cat's digestive system.

Now, humans and cats have lived together for millenia; it makes perfect sense that the Toxoplasma Gondii might also have steered us into giving their furry brothels a comfortable place in our homes and our beds... And for the cats, they have two species directly feeding them: Mice and Men. Perfect case of symbiotic evolution.

You'll never see Lassie do anything that smart.

Now, back to the parent post about working at PetSmart:

I've seen coworkers that were normal before become irritable and irrational after getting a cat.

Are you sure that's not just caused by working retail for long enough?

And then there was me, working at Home Depot, wearing the trademark Orange Apron. We had a cat in the store; it ate the mice that lived on the birdseed in the Seasonal Department. As I walked into the lunchroom, about 30 people eating lunch, big shift change time of day...

"Hey Lawrence! I hear you found the store cat!"

"Well, I found part of the store cat..."

Comment Re:Other way? (Score 1) 249

Does mental illness lead to owning a cat, though?

Being a crack dealer seems to lead to owning a pit bull, so why not?

Given the above, I'm proud to be a cat person. We must be nuts... why else would we put up with an egotistical, narcissistic, impatient, violent, snobby creature in our homes?

Better to have such a creature in my home than in the White House.

Comment Misty Water-Colored Memories... Slashdot Oldtimers (Score 1) 86

Great printer, those old Panasonics. Fast, clean, quiet, durable. Also loved the Epson MX-80 and the Okidata ML320.

I had a DEC LA-36 teletype (nb. not a TeleType) attached to my TI-99/4A back in the day... its 7 pin printhead lacked true descenders, so the print matched the text on the TI-99/4A's screen!

By the time I got to the Amiga 1000 and 500, I had a hand-me-down HP LaserJet I. What a tank. A Canon photocopier with HP's modifications, and doubled as a great ozone generator. The printer was connected to the Amiga by a 300 or 1200 baud RS-232 link. Annoyingly, I couldn't print anything from the BBSes while I was online - the Amiga's single serial port was needed for the modem. :)

Nowadays, there's a Unix mainframe in my right front pocket. And I can wirelessly print to a Samsung color laser printer that's 10x faster and 1/4 the weight. Don't even get me started on that Chromecast thing that's smaller than a videocassette and faster than a drive to Blockbuster.

But I do miss the quality of the old stuff. The old HP LaserJet just happened to be the very first (shared with the Apple LaserWriter) of its kind. Cost-reduction was not a goal; quality was. And it showed.

I miss HP.

Nice to meet another Slashdot old-timer...

Comment Re:the joker in the formula (Score 1) 686

You are ignoring the fact that it seems like one highly intelligent and technology-developing species could probably not evolve in coexistence with another one on the same planet, at some point one would win and kill off the other one.

I'm sure it's been proposed/discussed many times before, but I don't know if this concept has an "official" name or not.

Comment Re:Progenitors? (Score 4, Interesting) 686

Directionality is a mostly irrelevant consideration.

The fact that an antenna is 9db or 30db higher in one direction quickly becomes irrelevant with the vast distances of space. Antennas don't work like flashlights. They are more like a light bulb with a two-way mirror on one side that reflects 50% of the light and lets 50% of it through out the back. At VHF and above, things like mountains act like mirrors that reflect signals straight up (among other directions), as well.

You are somewhat wrong about AM... at least broadcast band AM is mostly only directional in the sense that there's dead zones straight off the ends of the dipole. They are shooting quite a bit of signal upward. Our ionosphere does strongly reflect and attenuate what would make it out to space in those bands though.

This goes toward your comment about the 50s and 60s... we have far more powerful transmitters in operation now (some VHF TV the better part of 1 megawatt!), and in bands that aren't reflected by the ionosphere. If anything we are getting louder and louder.

Unfortunately the first thing they might see of humanity is free-to-air broadcast TV, and just assume that we are all complete idiots.

Comment Copyright C+Ds aren't "trolling" (Score 3, Interesting) 98

A studio enforcing their copyright against personal-use downloads might be a somewhat crappy and ill-advised practice, but it's not "trolling". To me if you were going to call something "copyright trolling" it would be more like using copyright letters to silence people, aka SLAPP, not using copyright the way it was intended, to prevent people other than the owner from making copies of the entire media as a substitute to buying it from the media holder.

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