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Comment Re:Pity my MacPro can't run it (Score 1) 200

Isn't it odd that a 8 year old Mac is still perfectly fine, but every one that is still being sold is hopelessly antiquated?

I'm not sure what you mean. Is it just a complaint that Apple doesn't always update their hardware often? By your own logic, that complaint makes no sense. If the 8 year old Max is perfectly fine, then the "antiquated" Mac that still has last year's technology should still be perfectly fine.

Here's something that's worth understanding: You can generally tell how long a hardware vendor expects you to keep their equipment in service by how long their longest available warranty is. For most Apple hardware, the longest warranty available is 3 years. For mobile devices, it's 2. Dell's default warranty, for example, is also 3 years, but they'll sell you an upgrade for 5. Dell's signaling that they expect you to get a new computer every 3-5 years, while Apple is signaling that you should be upgrading every 3 years or so.

Now obviously you don't *have to* upgrade that often. Apple still supports older devices with their software releases, but obviously certain kinds of support start dying off after that time. The first thing that happens is that the warranty is over, so they won't fix it for free. After that, they may fix it for an extra fee, but eventually that goes away, and they simply refuse to even try to fix it. That often happens around the time they stop manufacturing replacement parts.

But eventually, everyone discontinues support for everything. If you can get Windows 10 installed on your 8 year old Dell workstation, Dell isn't going to stop you. At the same time, Dell isn't going to go through any trouble to help you do it. It's the same thing.

Comment Re:universal clipboard wtf (Score 3, Interesting) 200

Dad hits copy to copy/paste something on his laptop at the office, and the kids upstairs doing their homework go to paste something into a document on the ipad upstairs have that content dumped into the document.

Well it's not quite as bad as that. It only works if they're both signed in using the same iCloud account. So you'll only have a problem if Dad and Son are signed into the same iCloud account on their devices. Even then... I have Sierra and an iPhone, and I can't figure out how the feature is supposed to work. I certainly haven't done it accidentally.

Comment Re:Where is the funding for the trip? (Score 1) 289

Who exactly is going to pay for these trips to Mars or wherever else?

Private companies might pay for some space exploration, assuming it's cheap enough and there's enough of a financial reward to make it worthwhile. One of the possibilities people have put out there is that, if space travel were cheap/easy enough, we might be able to mine asteroids for various materials that are relatively rare here on earth's surface.

Comment What problem does this fix? (Score 1) 81

I looked over the summary and the two articles they linked do, and I'm trying to understand what problem this fixes. In one article, it says:

For example, imagine setting up an e-commerce website using service providers like Squarespace or Wix and then going back to your Internet registrar to make sure that the domain you just registered is set up to properly point to and respond to the website you just finished building. It's a process that's not for the faint of heart.

... but I really don't know what they're referring to. Changing your DNS records is not particularly difficult. I suppose you need to know what an A record is vs. a CNAME record. Their example of DNS being scary points to a page on how to change your MX records for Google Apps, which... I'm sorry, but if you're configuring MX records, you should have some idea of what you're doing. It's not a particularly difficult process, and if you can't figure that out on your own, you shouldn't be managing your own email services. Get a Gmail address, or else hire someone.

And even more importantly, if you're dealing with someone who can't figure out how to set up an A record, how are they going to set up a TXT record? And should that person really be configuring an API that allows 3rd parties to make changes to their DNS?

Comment Re:Brought to you by SJWs (Score 1) 128

I'm not defending her actions. I'm saying I kind of understand. It's a lot of pressure to put on someone so young. At that age, I had a real hard time saying the words, "I don't know," and she was put in charge of running a multi-million-dollar company. And apparently there weren't any adults in the room overseeing things.

Or I think we should be able to admit, at least, this isn't a surprising outcome. People gave a 19 year-old college dropout millions of dollars to pursue a crackpot scheme that scientific experts said wouldn't work. There was apparently no oversight, no due diligence, and no independent testing. It's sort of like, if you left your dog unattended with a steak on the floor-- for as much as the dog is "being bad" when he eats the steak, it's kind of your own fault for creating this situation.

Comment Re:Brought to you by SJWs (Score 4, Insightful) 128

But once they determined the trace multipliers thye had come up with didn't work, they should have come clean right there and then. Not turned it from a failed venture into a fraudulent one.

Still, I feel like I could understand how a person could get into that situation. Imagine you have a company with investors, employees, facilities, everything. Your investors are pressuring you for results. There's a lot of pressure to get results, and you're failing to produce them, but you think your scientists might come up with a solution at any moment. You might be fooling yourself, but you have a lot of people counting on you, and if you can pull through it, you'll be filthy rich.

All you have to do is stall, and keep it all together long enough for your scientists to make your promises a reality. You expect it to be difficult, but everyone seems happy to look the other way. Your investors don't really care as long as their investments are growing in value. Your employees don't care as long as they get to keep their jobs. Keeping things going requires some secrecy, but everyone involved is just looking for an excuse to believe whatever your tell them.

After a while, you're too deep in. You started out just stalling, misleading people a little until you could figure out how to make it all legit. But that was months ago-- years ago now. You've already accidentally crossed the line into fraud a while back, without even realizing it at the time. Now you have no choice but to keep it all afloat and hope for a scientific breakthrough, or some other miracle,

I'm not saying that this is Holmes's story. I'm just saying that it's not hard to imagine how a relatively young and inexperiences person could fall into a situation like this. After all, they do say "fake it 'til you make it," and she might have been hoping that at some point, her company would "make it". Either way, it does seem like Vanity Fair is right to assign a fair amount of the blame on the Silicon Valley system. Somehow people invested massive amounts of money in a 19 year-old who was claiming to do something experts claimed wasn't possible, and they did so without doing due diligence?

Comment Standards (Score 5, Interesting) 87

I think the root of the problem here is that, in the past several years, there has been no focus on developing common open standards.

I think the easiest example to give is the difference between messaging apps and email. If I use Gmail and I want to send an email to someone whose email is on Office 365, AOL, Yahoo, a private email server, or any email server at all, there's not really any difficulty. I can connect to my server either by using Google's website or by using a standard protocol (SMTP), the email gets transferred to the recipient's mail server through a standard protocol (again SMTP), and then the recipient can probably download it using a standard protocol (e.g. IMAP). SMTP and IMAP aren't without their shortcomings, and the openness of this system has had problems because of its openness (e.g. spam), but overall it works wonderfully. However, things would not work this way if they were designed today.

In contrast, several companies (including Facebook, Apple, Google, and Microsoft) have developed messaging applications, which are to some degree aimed at replacing SMS, IM, and/or email. These applications each use proprietary protocols for sending and receiving messages, and there is no compatibility between them. While I can use Thunderbird to send and receive my email on my Gmail account, there isn't a 3rd-party open source Hangouts app, because (at least as far as I know) the protocols for it are not open. From my Gmail account, I can send email to users with "" email addresses, but I can't use hangouts to message with Facebook Messenger users. I need a Facebook account in order to do that.

This is just an easy and obvious example. I chose to compare email to messaging because I think it makes for an easy comparison, and it's clearly a bit stupid. There isn't really anything so complex about text messaging that Facebook, Apple, Google, WhatsUp, and all other messaging apps couldn't simply message each other. However, I don't think this a fluke, but instead the easiest-to-understand example of how the internet is moving more and more toward walled gardens. Nobody is developing open standards, or at least, nobody is really agreeing to use them.

To give another example, many sites let you log in with your Facebook account or your Google account-- I think some let you use a Twitter or LinkedIn account. This is great, since it diminishes the number of login credentials that you need to know, memorize, or secure. However, each of these companies are basically offering their own separate incompatible authentication service. The site developer has to decide to actively support Google Authentication, and if they do, it doesn't allow me to authenticate on their site against my Facebook credentials (for example). They must support each method of authentication individually, rather than having one framework that allows authentication against whichever identity provider the user wishes to use.

And although some people will think I'm a crackpot, I think this is a very widespread problem that includes Silicon Valley's obsession with "apps". Instead of developing a photo-hosting service, you have to have a photography app that's tied to a service. They make it so you can't use the app with a different service, and you can't use the service with a different app. Then a couple of companies (e.g. Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Apple) buy all these different apps, and make it so the apps and the services only interact well with their other apps and services. It's not hard to see how this quickly turns into a set of walled gardens.

In my view this all goes back to the issue of standards. If these apps and services used standard protocols and standard APIs, then they could all interact with each other.

Comment Re:Not surprising (Score 4, Insightful) 153

Once you have the apps you need, why change?

I think the problem is that the "new economy" is supposed to be driven by the idea that, every month, a different group of 20 year-olds in California will come out with another mobile app that will revolutionize the economy, solve all of our problems, and change everyone's life. You know, like the way Foursquare changed the way we all socialize, or how Words with Friends completely changed the world? So if everyone isn't constantly buying the trendy new apps, then the world stops improving, the "new economy" collapses, and we all die horrible deaths.

Seriously, though, the way some people talk, you'd think that's how this all works. In reality, a lot of the startup culture is overhyped nonsense that nobody is calling bullshit on because too many people have an economic incentive to keep people believing the nonsense. I'd bet an awful lot of people have something like 10 apps installed on their phone (excluding built-in ones), and only 5 get regular use-- and of those, 3 of them should really just be websites, and there's no real reason why they need to be applications except it makes them slightly easier to access.

Comment Re:Don't care, won't use it (Score 1) 132

Actually, I think Google has been worse.

Ha... no. Sorry. I can't agree with that.

Microsoft will support the framework you built on forever. Google kills projects and leaves devs high and dry.

Whether that's good or not depends at least a little bit on perspective. If you expect Microsoft to continue supporting 20 year-old frameworks, I think you'd better brace yourself. I think a lot of the push to force Windows 10 down everyone's throats was to lessen the end-user impact when they start obsoleting a bunch of old stuff that they're not going to support anymore.

Google spies on me. Microsoft just wanted my money.

Oh, I wish that were true. Microsoft is spying on you too. What, you think they don't keep track of what you're searching for on Bing? You think they're not pulling usage data from Windows? We can argue about who's worse, or who has more noble motivations, but they're both "spying on you". At least Google isn't using crappy DRM/Activation schemes to control how you use their products.

So does Edge. I think they're paying developers to port them over?

Yeah, that's a good sign. Anyway, like I said, I don't really care. I won't use it.

Although the really reason I won't use Chrome is it seems to use tons of memory and crash all the time.

I don't know what scary sites you're visiting. With years of daily usage on multiple platforms, I can't remember Chrome crashing. It's certainly not an unstable application.

Comment Don't care, won't use it (Score 1, Insightful) 132

I honestly don't care what Microsoft can show regarding Edge. I'm not going to use it.

First, because Chrome has a track record of complying with standards. Microsoft IE does not. Chrome has become the de facto standard at this point. Most developers that I've talked to in the past couple of years have prioritized testing on Chrome. If you want your website to work, use Chrome. (there's some nice irony here) Second, when they had the dominant browser, it was a disaster. I'm not looking to return to those days. In fact, Microsoft has shown a patter of screwing their partners and their customers, and I have no interest in providing them with any more influence or power than I'm forced to. Also, Chrome has a community of developers making various extensions. I don't use a lot of extensions, but if you're making your decision based on functionality, Chrome is probably the best choice. Finally, I can log into Chrome with my gmail account, and my settings and extensions sync to whatever device I use. Whether I'm using a Mac, Windows 7 machine, Windows 10 machine, Chromebook, Android phone, or iPad, I sign in with my gmail account, and I get all my stuff set up automatically.

Microsoft should just admit defeat, and stop trying to make their own browser. Create a metro-themed fork of Chrome if you have to, but stop trying to make Edge happen. It's not going to happen.

Comment Re: Shocking! (Score 1) 527

Nobody outside the US really takes it serious.

I don't think anyone inside the US really takes it seriously, either. Even the supporters of these ideas don't care if they're logical, well argued, supported by evidence, or even true. It's really all about preventing changes to their way of life while looking for a way to stick it to "those snooty hippie liberal elites".

Comment Re:Or the actual reason(s) (Score 1) 761

Sure, that seems vaguely reasonable to me. Mostly, though, I just wish they'd have sorted this out a bit more before dropping the port. Maybe talked to other major vendors and found a solution that had some consensus behind it.

Of course, maybe they did approach other vendors, and the other vendors were completely uncooperative.

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