Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! No Flash necessary and runs on all devices. ×

Comment Re: A clear case of not needed (Score 1) 198

I can charge an EV at home or work. There is not an EV I know of that could not handle the daily commute of myself or any of friends, family or co-workers. The rate at which battery range is improving means within about 5 years the range will be more than I can handle in a single days drive. On the other hand there is, as far as I know, not a single hydrogen charging station in New Zealand. If I was rich I could buy a new EV today and I assume my next new car, about 4 years from now, will be within my price range. Hydrogen cars have been demos for 30+ years and I see no technology on the horizon that will change that, whereas some of the battery hype over years has become reality. Look at the battery price and performance curves over the last few decades and you will see the trend is clear.

Tell you what, I will invest my money in EVs and you can invest yours in hydrogen cars. I bet I get to retire before you do...

Comment A clear case of not needed (Score 1) 198

Trains are in the unique situation that supplying external electricity is relatively easy, you string up a cable above the track. It is the form of EV that has been practical for decades and is widely deployed so why would you create such a complicated alternative? Yes, you could argue the less used or longer remote tracks would be expensive to electrify but do wonder if a hydrogen hybrid stacks up economically for those cases anyway.

Full disclosure: I thought hydrogen vehicles where dumb when I first read about how they where going to change the world "real soon now", in the 1980s, and nothing in the years since has change my view. If I subscribed to conspiracy theories then I would believe hydrogen vehicles were backed by oil industry to slow the development of EVs. It has annoyed me how long it has taken EVs to reach market but now they are here I think it is time stop giving press coverage to impractical hydrogen demo vehicles and focus on the real issue, the transition from ICEs to EVs.

Comment Re:The more hated windows 10 is (Score 1) 232

Yes that is the way to do it on the cheap. For my parents I brought a cheap reasonable spec HP but could not get the WiFi to work. In the end I did exactly what you did, brought new miniPCIe WiFi card for it that supported Linux. I probably spent 4+ hours on the problem.

I still think an extra $150 on a high spec machine was worth it to not worrying about if they provide a solution that works. I get paid more that $38/hr so in the case of the cheap HP I would have been better off paying an extra $150. The problem most times is you have no idea what will work with Linux and what won't before buying a PC. For the XPS DE you know up front where you are at with Linux.

Comment I don't see how the dots connect? (Score 1) 87

How does popularity of a few sites mean the control of the Internet is changing?

Surely it is about who controls the DNSs and top level routers that affects control of the Internet. That is a real issue to worry about but as I understand things those are not controlled by the big websites.

The reverse way of looking at it is if people waste their time in walled gardens so what? As long as the rest of the Internet still works who cares. How is people limiting themselves to a few websites stopping me from accessing all those little niche sites I enjoy?

I don't see the connection between users with tunnel vision wasting time on popular site and the availability of the rest of the Internet?

Comment Re:You can always roll your own with the motherboa (Score 1) 232

You can try, but the Windows version has different hardware that has poor Linux support. It's not that the Windows version is made to lock out Linux but rather the parts are chosen for function/price with Windows and no consideration of Linux. To Dell's credit they went the extra step to rework it for Linux as the XPS DE series when few other manufacturers bother.

Comment Re:The more hated windows 10 is (Score 3, Interesting) 232

The Linux version has different parts. From memory the WiFi chipset is different as the one in the Windows version has poor Linux support whereas the XPS DE has changed to a chipset with good driver support. Not sure what your time is worth but $150 was worth it from a machine where everything worked first time on Linux. Compared to the Apple MBA that my XPS DE replaced it is a dream. It took many hours to get the Mac working on Linux and I never did get the camera working on it. So yea I spent $150 on a free OS, then promptly replaced Ubuntu with Mint 18 anyway. It worked first time too, no drivers needed.
If the $150 really worries you then XPS is probably the wrong range of machines to look at, there are plenty of cheaper options out there.

Comment Re:What's The Difference Between The Two? (Score 1) 232

It uses different chipset parts for some functions, WiFi from memory, to ensure there will be no driver problems. First laptop I have owned where Linux installed with every device working 100% at first boot. No more detective work and long hunts for drivers etc. Also you don't have to pell off all those Windows stickers that are present on the other laptops. Just wish they had changed the keyboard to get rid of the Windows meta key but a sticker fixed that.

Comment Shame it appears to be US only (Score 2) 232

The XPS13 is a fine PC, I installed Mint 18 on it with zero hassle and everything worked first time. I am very happy with now I have it but buying it was a major mission as from what I can see it is a US only product. I live in New Zealand where you can not order it from the NZ version of the Dell website. I had to get access to a USA issue credit card to pay for it and ship it to a USA based address. I real hassle. The funny thing is Dell know who pays for their products and who they ship it to but never bother to ask who is buying it or who the owner will be.

Bottom line is Dell are a PIA to deal with but have a first class product, way nicer that the Apple MBA it replaced.

Comment Re:Risk of a flame war (Score 1) 316

I don't know. I stopped using Ubuntu when they took away the minimize button. I know they have corrected some of those early mistakes and Ubuntu is more usable than their early radical changes but having moved to Mint there was no looking back. The Mint team seem to have the same mindset as I do so I'm happy.

I was talking about is what Mint should do to help capture more of the Windows users, hence my comments about having the tools needed to resolve issues from the GUI as this is what migrating users are looking for. I think the tools they already have in place a pretty good for routine stuff, it more the difficult issues you run in to on some installs I think is worth focusing on.

Comment Risk of a flame war (Score 2) 316

At the risk of starting a flame war I think if Linux is going to get traction on the desktop it needs more thinking like the Linux Mint. I think both Windows and Ubuntu made the mistake of following trendy ideas at the expense of the user. When my elderly parents we faced with moving from XP to Windows 8 I moved them to Mint and they have been happy Linux users for years now.

The most useful thing for average users is making the GUI config tools easy to use by a lay person, and doing it without breaking the traditional config files people like myself are used to working with. In this respect I think Mint is suitable for large percentage of average users but the focus needs to be on the small but significant number of cases where it is not possible to get a system up and running properly without opening a command line window.

Comment Typical bullshit hype (Score 1) 157

Yes, it may be possible to hack some monitors but generally this is bullshit. I have worked on the development of monitors so know that most simply can not be hacked in the way they suggest. The first criteria of most monitors is they are cheap. The second criteria is they work. Once you understand that then you realise the only to hack most monitors is with a special programming card (some can be updated via an USB port). The fact is you typically have a low spec 8 bit micro controlling a high speed switch/amplifier. The I2C channel is typically connected to a EEPROM and can not be used to program the micro. The CEC is a custom UART type port that also does not offer ISP functions. The micro controller can overlay low res graphics but has no ability to read the actual high speed video stream because to do so cost money, see criteria one, and is not need for it to work, see criteria two.

The simple way to see this is bullshit is to ask yourself when was the last time you updated the firmware in you monitor?

Microsoft Brings ChakraCore to Linux and OS X (cio.com) 106

An anonymous reader quotes a columnist at CIO: A few days ago I wrote about Microsoft's revival of Skype for Linux. I called it "a big deal" -- less because of Skype itself and more because it signified Microsoft's recognition that Linux is a platform worth supporting... Now the company has done it again. At Node Summit this week, Microsoft announced the availability of ChakraCore for Linux. ChakraCore is the core part of the Chakra JavaScript engine that powers Microsoft Edge and Universal Windows Platform. With this move, Microsoft is putting one of its core technologies on a competing platform. This, more than any other Linux-friendly move the company has made, is a clear departure from the Microsoft of Gates and Ballmer that used its technologies to lock users into Windows...

While Ubuntu is the primary Linux distribution that Microsoft is using to showcase its ChakraCore technologies, the company said that the support should easily translate to other modern Linux distributions.

Microsoft's blog post says the experimental implementation runs not only on x64 Linux but also on OS X.

Slashdot Top Deals

Feel disillusioned? I've got some great new illusions, right here!