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Comment Re: I wonder... (Score 1) 199

CSB - I just taught a Kodi class to 50 adults who wanted it bad enough to demand that it be an authorized use of their continuing education funding. I didn't campaign for it and I didn't specially discuss anything more dubious than the Fusion Installer and Kodimaster repos. They can figure out Exodus and Sportsdevil on their own, but they were still glad to get the class.

Comment OK. Sure. Cede some market to Amazon (Score 1) 116

Alexa is available for all Android devices.
Prime Subscribers already get unlimited Photo Storage and ridiculously cheap ($50/year) truly unlimited Cloud storage accounts.

Sure, you're trading your privacy off to a different internet giant, but if I'm looking for the particular feature set available with a Pixel phone, it seems like I can get them just fine from Amazon's apps and services without having to buy Google's phone in particular.

Likewise, I already know the Pixel doesn't have hardware features I legitimately want to see, like a card reader and a removable battery. I'd rather get the hardware I want and mess around with adb commands to kill the handset/carrier vendor's bloat than deal with hardware that's inadequate to begin with.

This doesn't seem like a compelling option at all and is even less so for trying to create exclusivity in the OS.

Comment Is Google Cast just an Android Intent? (Score 2) 60

Two things that come to my mind are that Miracast is a standard remote display technology that lots of things support, including many Smart TVs and STBs.

The other thing is that I've run across several non-Google platforms that enable some sort of media casting, using an Android Intent (the Share button, basically) to show media on another device and definitely works with Android to Kodi or Plex Clients or from the desktop with a browser plugin. As far as I know, there's no special Google magic in it.

What's so special about Google Cast in any of this?

Comment OK, now give us a new HDX (Score 1) 61

I have an HDX 8.9. I actually love it for the combination of form factor and performance. It's lacking an SD slot and mine has been heavily modified from its stock software load, but more importantly to me, NO ONE has replacement parts for it, and it's old enough that the battery has deteriorated from a new model. I loved it to death, apparently.

The thing is held together with glue and as I understand it, HDX 8.9s are nightmarish to work on, so I'm just going to have to live with a device that can only manage 4 hours of screen-on time and hope that Amazon eventually gets around to offering an updated model of similar specs.

And that's the problem, because the product line hasn't been refreshed in two years or more. New Fire HDs don't live up to the hardware specs of the HDX. They're the wrong sizes and weights, have lower screen resolutions and slower CPUs. Even as somebody who isn't bothered by having to side-load a significant number of apps to overcome the shortcomings of Amazon's app store, it's a drag.

I have an nVidia Shield (another tablet that is no longer being manufactured) that I also like well enough, but it doesn't quite live up to the screen of the HDX. Samsung's high end tablets typically have gorgeous screens but never, ever get OS updates. Asus and LG make 8"-class devices are likewise not quite satisfactory.

I'm sure Amazon sells a lot more $200 HDs than $400 HDXs but damn, some of us actually do want one.

Comment Re:They should just pull the trigger (Score 1) 144

What other search engine is there? There's Microsoft and Google with deep pockets. Does DuckDuckGo have fat stacks of cash sitting around for some reason? How bad would it be for Mozilla to take Facebook funding? Would we really stand for it if Moz got funding from Baidu or Yandex?

I mean, insofar as we stand for things that the Mozilla foundation does now, which are mostly terrible and stupid.

So probably Facebook then.

Comment Re: Yes, because we need another (Score 1) 157

That is true. I haven't. I don't. I do have Google Voice configured to deliver SMS messages as email (and I whitelist senders to a minimum as well), precisely because I don't want to deal with another, extremely limited messaging tool. I already dislike the idea that I need accounts on six or seven different platforms to communicate with my contacts. Why add another to the list?

Comment Re:RAID (Score 4, Informative) 229

You realize that if you're using RAID5 for a volume larger than about 12TB, you're going to run in to the mathematical certainty that you'll have a read error during data a rebuild operation, right? It's not a huge deal if you're under that threshold, but I've found 20TB+ RAID5s in production systems a few times and I think it's something a lot of folks don't know about.

The issue has to do with the rated hard error rate for mechanical drives, making an uncorrectable read error a statistical certainty at around 12TB for RAID5 and 30somethingTB for RAID6.

Comment Re:Surprise! (Score 4, Interesting) 294

Palemoon is a thing that exists. If you're a Windows user, it's clearly the best way forward for those seeking refuge from Mozilla's mismanagement.

I'm not sure what Thunderbird needs. As far as I can tell, it's fine. It's not buggy and all the features I want to use work. Other than security fixes, what more do I want out of a mature mail client?

Comment Re:They still make game consoles? (Score 1) 314

I don't agree with Steam's terms of service. I paid for the games. They're mine. I should be able to reinstall them at whim, with or without internet access. With or without Valve's involvement. If Valve decides I'm a dick, I should be able to continue playing games, not have my access to them terminated because of their user agreement. I especially dislike the notion that I have to check-in with an online service to play single player, offline titles. All of that is unacceptable. Just because you're willing to compromise on those things doesn't mean that I am or that I should have to.

Comment Re:They still make game consoles? (Score 1) 314

Because I'd rather support a company whose policies I encourage than give my business to someone who can hold other purchases hostage. When I can play my legally obtained copy of Half-Life 2 without having Steam installed, I'll think about whether or not there's a practical difference. Until then, there definitely is.

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