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Comment Google Docs (Score 1) 227

I've been using Google Docs lately to share my notes with other people. They can add comments on specific items that show up on the side of the document, and you can respond or resolve the comment to hide it.

Of course this is Google, so there's always the chance they retire it, though I think Docs and Sheets are likely to stick around as long as Office does.

Submission + - Slashdot Burying Stories About Slashdot Media Owned SourceForge ( 1

KMSelf writes: DICE-owned Slashdot are burying stories over DICE-owned SourceForge taking over admi accounts for existing projects and injecting adware into installers.

As a Slashdotter since before logins and registrations, this is simply pathetic.

As Dan Luu writes:"I’m amazed at how quickly it’s possible to destroy user trust, and how much easier it is to destroy a brand than to create one."


Submission + - SPAM: What kind of things can you do with an NSI cell phone?

An anonymous reader writes: I have an NSI cell phone that I can use to listen to FM radio. It has a 3.5mm jack, which is nice since I can use my regular headphones that I use for TV. I also have a camera and videocam capabilities too. I do want to activate it, but I don't want to pay what the provider charges for minimum service.

For those of you who have or have had an NSI cell phone, what kind of things have you done with it? Does yours have any unique features that your activated phone doesn't have? Do you keep it around still, and why?

Submission + - SourceForge grabs GIMP for Windows' account, wraps installer in bundle-pushing ( 1

shanehiltonward writes: SourceForge, the code repository site owned by Slashdot Media, has apparently seized control of the account hosting GIMP for Windows on the service, according to e-mails and discussions amongst members of the GIMP community—locking out GIMP's lead Windows developer. And now anyone downloading the Windows version of the open source image editing tool from SourceForge gets the software wrapped in an installer replete with advertisements.

Update: In a blog post issued shortly after this story posted, an unidentified member of SourceForge's community team wrote that, in fact, "this project was actually abandoned over 18 months ago, and SourceForge has stepped-in to keep this project current." That runs counter to claims by members of the GIMP development community.

The GIMP project is not officially distributed through SourceForge—approved releases are only posted on the GIMP project's own Web page. But Jernej Simoni, the developer who has been responsible for building Windows versions of GIMP for some time, has maintained an account on SourceForge to act as a distribution mirror. That is, he had until today, when he discovered he was locked out of the Gimp-Win account, and the project's ownership "byline" had been changed to "sf-editor1"—a SourceForge staff account. Additionally, the site now provided Gimp in an executable installer that has in-installer advertising enabled. Ars tested the downloader and found that it offered during the installation to bundle Norton anti-virus and remote backup services with GIMP—before downloading the installer authored by Simoni (his name still appears on the installer's splash screen).

Submission + - Mystery Woman Recycles $200,000 Apple I Computer

Dave Knott writes: A recycling centre in the Silicon Valley is looking for a woman who dropped off an old computer for recycling. The computer was apparently inside boxes of electronics that she had cleaned out from her garage after her husband died. This would be nothing unusual, except that the recycled computer was an Apple I,. The recycling firm eventually sold the Apple I for $200,000 to a private collection, and because the company gives 50 per cent of the proceeds from sold items back to the original owner, they wish to split the proceeds with the mystery donor.

Comment GIMP just the tip (Score 1) 1

That ars article claims the same SF editor has taken over a bunch of other projects like Apache http server, OpenOffice, Firefox, Thunderbird, Drupal/WordPress, Eclipse, NetBeans, VLC and a bunch of others that have stopped actively updating their Sourceforge project pages. Pretty despicable and I would have to think illegal.

Submission + - SourceForge hijacks Win-Gimp, wraps installer in adware ( 1

slashdice writes: Ars Technica (and, well, everybody other than slashdot) is reporting on the reprehensible behavior by SourceForge, Slashdot sister sister site. "SourceForge, the code repository site owned by Slashdot Media, has apparently seized control of the account hosting GIMP for Windows on the service, according to e-mails and discussions amongst members of the GIMP community—locking out GIMP's lead Windows developer. And now anyone downloading the Windows version of the open source image editing tool from SourceForge gets the software wrapped in an installer replete with advertisements."

Comment Re:The real news for nerds (Score 1) 234

I joined AOL in the early nineties as a ten year old and the only technically inclined person in the house, and somehow managed to run up around $3k in long-distance fees the first month before we found out the closest provider was in a town 45 minutes away. We still had to pay the bill. The real shock here is the blatant ageism!

Comment Re:because Millenials are attentionwhores? (Score 1) 131

The first time I ever heard about the internet was back in the early nineties while I was watching a Star Trek marathon - I think the first season of TNG - on the SciFi channel, and they had a running live chat log on the bottom from viewers on their website (and for the next hour I sat through AOL tech support trying to find a tech who even knew what http meant). 25 years later and I still haven't seen anything like that on live TV.

Comment Re:Carbon is Not the Problem (Score 1) 301

Wat? Last time I checked, Nebraska didn't have a rain forest. Aside from the climate alarmists worried about emissions, the real environmental concern that people in the Midwest have about the pipeline is that it will be laid directly over the Ogalalla aquifer which provides fresh drinking water and irrigation for a large portion of the country. As well, there is little to no direct or indirect economic benefit to the states through which the pipeline will flow - and as many others have mentioned here, will likely result in the increased price of domestic oil.

While it's debatable how far reaching the effects of multiple nearly guaranteed leaks and spills will have on the aquifer over the years, local communities will have to deal with wells and irrigation contaminated by such leaks and spills, and as we've seen with BP, getting the companies involved to provide recompense is no easy matter.

Comment Re:Does SteamOS count as a desktop? (Score 1) 281

Not sure how true that is. I remember reading something about Steam Runtime acting as a library abstraction layer developers could target for, and assumedly Valve will handle all of the dirty details of video, sound, input and networking libraries. I might be confused here. I would imagine an enterprising hacker could provide a third party implementation of it that would run SteamOS games on any distrubtion. I'm not finding much discussion of this anywhere and I'd like to know more.

Comment The real next generation (Score 3, Interesting) 296

Think about up the next generation of game developers - kids growing up right now. If they're gaming on a console and using a tablet or smart phone for their other computing need, they have no real exposure to programming, 3D modeling, audio software or any of the other things that go in to designing games. If Windows and MacOS are moving towards closed software ecosystems and a mobile interface type of simplified UI that hides everything but Twitter and a browser from the user as they both seem to be, Linux is going to have to play a larger part in gaming development in the future. The more devices and distributions tailored for different purposes and specific hardware while still allowing users to peel back the curtains to access everything available on the OS, the better off we'll all be. Kids are curious and will do what they've always done since the advent of personal computing; making cool stuff for fun and to impress people, and unless some change like this takes place, fewer and fewer people will ever be exposed to these tools.

I know my nephew got his parents to buy an iPad just so he could play Minecraft. While the mobile versions of Minecraft make it hard (impossible?) to use addons and mods, I'm sure more than a few kids have been pushed in to building a PC or getting a gaming laptop to really take advantage of what that game has to offer. It'll just take one killer app that allows people to be creative and do things on a Steambox(/Windows/MacOS/Linux) that can't be done on a closed platform to start moving these things.

And in the meantime, Valve will be taking things slow and steady like they always have and building partnerships with hardware and software developers to get SteamOS ready to take over when the inevitable decline of support from MS and Apple for desktop users pushes the hardcore audience over where the games will necessarily follow. Totally agree with the article's author, Valve isn't trying to win a war but positioning itself for a future that's seeming pretty likely if not certain. The Steam machines that are launching now are a low risk investment from everyone involved. Free advertising for Valve, and a simple rebranding of exisiting hardware for the manufacturers. The real test will be how seamlessly and well the streaming works to entice hardcore gamers into putting a HTPC or steam box in their living room, and so far we haven't seen anything there.

Comment Ignorance on Both Sides (Score 2) 1010

Perhaps it might be worth reflecting on the probability that the majority of people on either side of the debate have no real justification for their belief for or against evolution than that they identify with a social group who holds a particular stance on the issue. It's just as easy to fall in to the trap of thinking you're more intelligent and learned by looking down on creationists - while never having applied any kind of personal critical analysis on evolution except to think that God doesn't exist therefore the theory of evolution must be true - as it is for creationists to accept a thousands of years old interpretation of creation - without sharing the cultural context in which it was written and understood - from the book of Genesis.

We see the same thing with politics. Very few people have any real idea what the Republican and Democratic parties really believe, except for lazy mischaracterizations of the opposing party fueled by whatever echo chamber a person tends to consume their news and media from. Meanwhile we're completely distracted from the abuses of both parties in nearly every single newly passed piece of legislation pandering to lobbyists and campaign donors.

The obvious solution is to raise citizens who are able to critically think for themselves, but we're only getting worse in this regard the more we see the government intervening in public education, and things aren't looking much better in the private education sector.

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Philosophy: A route of many roads leading from nowhere to nothing. -- Ambrose Bierce