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:Call me when it can actually follow me (Score 1) 55

The problem is that it needs to be told what it's supposed to track and it homes for where it launched. Following someone walking is very different from following someone when they're moving quickly. None of their video showed the latter, which tells me that they couldn't show it (after all, it'd be impressive).

Don't get me wrong, it looks like it'd be handy for a lot of purposes and they're moving in the right direction, but the pet analogy is really what I want to see for action shots. If I am bothering to charge and carry it, it needs to be able to do them with little-to-no planning or configuration. We're talking push of a single button simple. In a way, the best solution would probably be the simplest one: Have the smartphone stream GPS coordinates to the drone while tracking... It'd beat object recognition and keep it close the whole time.

As I think about it more, I can see some great uses for it. It's very cost effective for the capabilities and the size would make it very practical to carry around. I do think the size is great and the way it folds up really small is the best part of it. If I was a travel blogger that wanted to add video of my adventures, this would be an obvious choice.

Comment Re: Racist? (Score 1, Interesting) 398

The AC is right. That you can intentionally select for traits is irrelevant. Race is a social construct. If you don't believe me, read this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Race_and_genetics

We're all Homo sapiens sapiens. A tiny handful of genes that affect outward appearance are irrelevant. The fact people cling to such outdated garbage is depressing.

Comment Re: Spectrum... (Score 3, Insightful) 226

That was my first thought as well. All the best developers I've ever worked with were quite socially awkward, most probably somewhere on the spectrum. The best I ever hired was absolutely awful in the interview and nobody else could see what I saw in him.

High-functioning autistics succeeding in tech careers have resulted in what some have described as an "epidemic" of ASDs among children in Silicon Valley. One of the problems is that high-functioning autistics still seldom move up into management (even if they want to), which keeps companies from hiring lower-functioning people with strong skills.

At the very least, it's good to see some companies looking at working on diversity on this front. Too bad it will probably take decades to catch on in smaller companies where they'd likely be far more comfortable.

Comment Names are just as useless (Score 1) 224

Number designations are good, provided they include information. None of the modern car manufacturers (except, possibly, M-B) have numeric designations that actually mean anything. Pulling a number and adding a letter or three to it is not clever, it's a reflection of a complete lack of intelligence and/or creativity.

Names are even less meaningful, unless they last a long time. GM is the grand master of random names on random cars. They have done it so much that I often learn of some flop they built under a name I never heard of that was only available in X markets. Toyota is close to them, with their wide array of almost indistinguishable cars (take a look at their economy car line and tell me how these are clearly differentiated...I dare you).

In my opinion, companies should use a size/class name or letter identifier, then a series of completely standardized numbers/characters to define the body style & propulsion, then a unique trim name/identifier. Tesla does about the best I've seen in recent years - "Model S P90D" = Model S, Performance configuration (P), 90kWh battery pack (90), and AWD (D). Maybe this is why they appeal to tech people so much, aside from the fact they're electric.

Comment Re:You youngsters and your cloud (Score 1) 385

I don't trust the cloud providers, either. If I host something with one, I always assume it will need to be possible to completely load/restore it somewhere else. Tapes are the only remaining magnetic media that I still believe have a legitimate use case. Hard disks are still far too expensive to fit between tapes and solid state storage.

Comment Optical? Surely you jest. (Score 1) 385

I have been actively avoiding optical since the late 1990s and haven't put an optical drive in a computer I have built for myself since 2002. In fact, I haven't put one in any desktop I have built since 2010. Optical media is terrible for data storage, even tape makes more sense...

For that matter, I've been phasing out spinning hard disks for years. Sometime in 2009 is the last time I begrudgingly put a hard disk in a desktop. last time I ordered any was when I bought some enterprise-grade ones in 2013 for a file server. All my servers since then have exclusively used SSDs.

Not only is optical basically dead to me in regard to computers (very few drives exist anywhere in my company; I pull my old USB one out and hand it to someone about 2-3 times a year), but it is almost entirely dead for all entertainment media (I download or stream just about everything I watch these days). The blu-ray player isn't even connected to the TV anymore, it just sits in a cupboard collecting dust.

Solid state media is the future. Everything else is either for special use cases (tape - slow archival) or completely obsolete. Give it a couple more years and even cheap laptops will probably have SSDs, at which point HDDs will be forever dead.

Comment Re: Archival grade (Score 2) 385

The Los Angeles style is better with lower overhead than other forms. It flows in communication and doesn't add excessive irrelevant information. Considering they operate primarily in their metro area, it works very well. Nobody cares what type of road it is because it is irrelevant. If you want a truly bad system, drop "the" entirely. That's how they do it in San Francisco and a number of areas they have influenced. The negative effects are severe.

I have to disagree on "orient", as it overloads a word that is used as a noun or adjective. "Orientate" is a verb. All words based on it are as well. I believe people on this site primarily speak AmE and the term comes from BrE, which is probably why you are so confused by and resistant to it.

Comment Re: Null means Null (Score 1) 175

But that would be wrong. There is a location and they're as close to it as they can be. It is somewhere in the lower-48 US, so they return a rough centre and a radius that encompasses the region the address is in.

There are a lot of these that go to a geographic centre of a city or state as well, as that is the best accuracy they can provide.

All legitimate uses of their data (I have used it on a few projects.) would not be negatively affected by this lack of exact precision. The people at fault are those that used this database improperly, not those that created it.

Comment Re: Null means Null (Score 1) 175

I read that and thought, "Next, we'll hear of some hapless rural officer dying in a lake.". At the very least, I could see the local law enforcement suing for all the times it went out on that lake in a boat to get to that spot or all the calls flooding in from other LE groups to go there. They can't win.

Comment Re: cant be every adult (Score 1) 225

Seriously. My record would be muddier than the Mississippi River after a major flood of the surrounding area. I have people that use my loyalty cards and I use theirs (family, close friends, girlfriend, her family, etc). Hell, so does my GF. We buy things for ourselves and others. Her dad was flagged for marketing for products he was helping me research.

Going even further, there is tons that makes me even harder to track - numerous VMs, years in other countries, and the lack of concentration of information (except with Google - it's hard to get away from them).

I'd love to know what most of these companies know about me, though...

Slashdot Top Deals

Someday somebody has got to decide whether the typewriter is the machine, or the person who operates it.