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101  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / 5 Insane Devices for Monitoring Your Kids on: April 14, 2015, 09:02:47 AM
I saw this, and immediately thought of 40hz.

5 Insane Devices for Monitoring Your Kids

<a href="" target="_blank"></a>

We're in the midst of a tech revolution that's changing childhood for the worse. It's the constant digital surveillance of our kids. Here are five devices that are turning moms and dads into the NSA.

(1) Today there are literally hundreds of baby monitors on the market that stream live video, and many are infrared so you can peer in the dark as your baby snoozes under his Mozart mobile. Some models pivot and tilt, which seems like the sort of tool that might appeal to Seal Team 6. But parents?

(2) Then there are all the gadgets you can attach to your baby, like the Owlet monitor. Do you know your blood oxygen level? Why are we treating healthy babies like they need neonatal intensive care?

(3) Making parents afraid for their kids is a goldmine for companies, which explains the coming arrival of Smart Diapers that help parents analyze the chemical content of their babies' output. Because how dare you toss such a vital diagnostic specimen just into the Diaper Genie?

(4) Once the kids venture out, there's a tsunami of tracking devices that allow parents to strap the equivalent of an FBI ankle bracelet onto their offspring. One of these is V. ALRT, which can detect if your kid falls down. Can you imagine how anxiety inducing—and yet completely useless—this will be? “Warning your child has fallen. Commence feeling bad."

(5) The new Apple Watch is a revolutionary device, but I worry it could turn into the Swiss Army Knife of tracking tools—video feeds, GPS locators, biometric sensors.

These gadgets promise they’ll give parents peace of mind, but they do the exact opposite. They create constant fear—fear so great that you believe you must buy these things or your child is in grave danger. Once you’ve become convinced that your happy, healthy baby in her crib needs blood oxygen monitoring—or that you need to track your teen's heart rate and GPS on a date, which is too disgusting to think about, you'll be a total wreck. Meantime, your kids feel all the joy of a prisoner under house arrest.

Saying, “these devices provide peace of mind,” is like saying, “this box of mosquitoes will provide a good night’s sleep." Do not open the box.

40hz, care to chime in? Wink
102  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: April 12, 2015, 08:50:31 AM
Friendly reminder... Don't post any funny memes anymore if you're in Russia...


Russia just made a ton of Internet memes illegal


103  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: So, what pdf reader app is your fav? on: April 10, 2015, 12:10:21 PM
Isn't 9 EoL, or do you still get security updates for it?

Not sure. I've got 9.5.5 now. Haven't paid for any new versions. And I rarely download PDF files. I *always* check the source.
104  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: So, what pdf reader app is your fav? on: April 10, 2015, 03:32:31 AM
I use Acrobat 9 Pro, and it's very fast. Small files open instantly, and opening larger ones only takes a few seconds. (3 seconds with a 150 MB file I just checked.) However, it's rather expensive. It does include all the bells & whistles, but most are rarely needed, similar to how few of MS Office features are ever needed.

Just throwing that out there as nobody had mentioned it, and it is very fast.
105  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Interesting "stuff" on: April 09, 2015, 08:14:56 AM
World beer consumption by country.

106  Other Software / Html and CSS School / Re: HTML editor for beginners on: April 08, 2015, 11:06:18 AM
Well... just to throw it out there... EditPlus or Notepad++ or UltraEdit.

For multiple files, I love EditPlus. I've been using it for years (nearing 15 now...), and it's wonderful.

However, pure text editors aren't for everyone. And even inside of pure text editors, different people like different things.

  • (1) as a beginner, I want to be easily able to find everything.
  • (2) using a non-standard keyboard (qwertz) I would like customisable shortcuts (bonus for exportable list of same)
  • (3) would love to be able to compare files side by side (e.g. my version and someone elses - but this may be another category of software?)

1) Search in all files with a text editor - done?
2) Not sure.
3) Easily done in a good text editor.

Not sure if I'm hitting the mark here... Sad
107  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Cool Crowd Funders, Kickstarters, Indiegogos, etc. on: April 08, 2015, 11:00:13 AM
I figure that a thread of new crowd funded initiatives might be fun.

I'll kick this off with a funky aquarium that uses aquaponics:


It's pretty much all videos there, but should be enjoyable for a few people.

That project launched to it's goal in 1 hour.  Thmbsup
108  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Knight to queen's bishop 3 - Snowden charged with espionage. on: April 07, 2015, 07:30:26 PM
More jokes:

Can They See My Dick?

More humour at the site.

It is actually pretty serious as it walks through some of the issues.
109  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: April 07, 2015, 03:33:09 AM
You remember "How to shoot yourself in the foot with programming languages"?  That was awesome. 
THIS, however, is flipping EPIC.

What if programming languages were methods to eat an orange?

Some of my favorites:


This one had me rolling!


110  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Knight to queen's bishop 3 - Snowden charged with espionage. on: April 06, 2015, 07:33:00 PM
Posted without comment.

NYC officials remove Edward Snowden statue secretly installed in Brooklyn park

More at the link with pictures & GIFs.
111  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / "One Professional Russian Troll Tells All" on: April 06, 2015, 10:34:12 AM
This is pretty interesting. A "tell all" by a paid shill.

More and more, posts and commentaries on the Internet in Russia and even abroad are generated by professional trolls, many of whom receive a higher-than-average salary for perpetuating a pro-Kremlin dialogue online.

There are thousands of fake accounts on Twitter, Facebook, LiveJournal, and vKontakte, all increasingly focused on the war in Ukraine. Many emanate from Russia's most famous "troll factory," the Internet Research center, an unassuming building on St. Petersburg's Savushkina Street, which runs on a 24-hour cycle. In recent weeks, former employees have come forward to talk to RFE/RL about life inside the factory, where hundreds of people work grinding, 12-hour shifts in exchange for 40,000 rubles ($700) a month or more.

St. Petersburg blogger Marat Burkhard spent two months working at Internet Research in the department tasked with clogging the forums on Russia's municipal websites with pro-Kremlin comments. In the following interview, he describes a typical day and the type of assignments he encountered.

RFE/RL: Marat, you wrote on your blog that your time at Internet Research gave you enough material for an entire book. Why did you decide to write there? Entertainment? Adventurism?

Marat Burkhard: Yes, adventurism is the right word. Because in my opinion, this kind of work doesn't exist anywhere else.

RFE/RL: Was it hard to get the job?

Burkhard: Yes, it was hard. You have to write sample texts first, and then they decide if you're suitable for the work. They weed people out that way.

RFE/RL: What kind of texts?

Burkhard: First they make you write something neutral -- Vegetarianism: Pros And Cons. After that, the assignments start to get more to the point -- for example, what do I think about humanitarian convoys in Donetsk?

More that the link.

112  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: April 06, 2015, 10:23:18 AM
The next time someone talks about "when pigs fly"...

113  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: April 06, 2015, 09:23:54 AM
This one elicited an audible response from me. cheesy

BUD the Cowboy

A cowboy named Bud was overseeing his herd in a remote mountainous pasture in Montana when suddenly a brand-new 2015 BMW advanced toward him out of a cloud of dust. The driver, a young man in a Brioni® suit, Gucci® shoes, RayBan® sunglasses and YSL® tie, leaned out the window and asked the cowboy, "If I tell you exactly how many cows and calves you have in your herd, will you give me a calf?"

Bud looks at the man, who obviously is a yuppie, then looks at his peacefully grazing herd and calmly answers, "Sure, why not?"

The yuppie parks his car, whips out his Dell® notebook computer, connects it to his Apple i-phone, and surfs to a NASA page on the Internet, where he calls up a GPS satellite to get an exact fix on his location which he then feeds to another NASA satellite that scans the area in an ultra-high-resolution photo.

The young man then opens the digital photo in Adobe Photoshop® and exports it to an image processing facility in Hamburg, Germany ...

Within seconds, he receives an email on his Apple iPad® that the image has been processed and the data stored. He then accesses an MS-SQL® database through an ODBC connected Excel® spreadsheet with email on his Galaxy S5® and, after a few minutes, receives a response.

Finally, he prints out a full-color, 150-page report on his hi-tech, miniaturized HP LaserJet® printer, turns to the cowboy and says, "You have exactly 1,586 cows and calves."

"That's right. Well, I guess you can take one of my calves," says Bud.

He watches the young man select one of the animals and looks on with amusement as the young man stuffs it into the trunk of his car.

Then Bud says to the young man, "Hey, if I can tell you exactly what your business is, will you give me back my calf?"

The young man thinks about it for a second and then says, "Okay, why not?"

"You're a Congressman for the U.S. Government", says Bud.

"Wow! That's correct," says the yuppie, “but how did you guess that?"

"No guessing required." answered the cowboy. "You showed up here even though nobody called you; you want to get paid for an answer I already knew, to a question I never asked. You used millions of dollars’ worth of equipment trying to show me how much smarter than me you are; and you don't know sh*t about how working people make a living - or about cows, for that matter. This is a herd of sheep.”

“Now give me back my dog.”

114  Other Software / Announce Your Software/Service/Product / Re: OpalCalc 1.43 on: April 06, 2015, 08:52:30 AM
Wow talk about standardization.

Yep. Misery.

And engineers are physically incapable of using SI metric units properly... sigh...

Just one more reason why I'd love to see a universal currency - then we could stick with '$' for everything!

Don't you mean "฿"? cheesy

It's the same with time too of course. If we all switched to UTC (or as a first step, just had 24 time zones and scrapped DST), we'd be laughing. Here's a very funny video which accurately portrays the nightmares involved when working with time:

I loathe DST... and I've done programming for time... so I understand that video far too well... But is is certainly funny! cheesy

115  Other Software / Announce Your Software/Service/Product / Re: OpalCalc 1.43 on: April 05, 2015, 07:59:06 PM
Hmmm.. is putting USD before the number very common in the US or other countries?

Currency symbols are a nightmare across different publications/industries. Standards are all over the place. Here are some common ways that you will see in different places. I'll stick to USD for the examples.

$US 100
US$ 100
US $100
USD 100
100 USD
USD $100
$100 USD

Normally, I would recommend using one of the following:

USD 100
USD $100
100 USD
$100 USD

My preference there is (usually) for the top 2, though I prefer the bottom 2 for less formal usage. The top 2 are generally nicer to use with decimal places. e.g. USD $123.45.

The 3-character ISO scheme is the easiest to use. Using the actual symbols is a good idea as well when writing, though in OpalCalc I'd imagine that it wouldn't be needed as typing currency symbols can be difficult.

''There are various common abbreviations to distinguish the Canadian dollar from others: while the ISO currency code CAD (a three-character code without monetary symbols) is common, no single system is universally accepted.

And that's the real problem.

Local standards aren't very useful for non-locals. This makes the ISO system easier to use for broad/international audiences.

Taking a page out of the cryptocurrency ecosystem, they use schemes that mirror the ISO standard (for the most part), e.g. BTC vs. DOGE, which is an exception with 4 characters.
116  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: bibliographical references on: April 02, 2015, 08:38:26 AM
There is some academic software for that. I forget the name though. It manages references for you in documents. It's out there... Sorry I can't be of more help.
117  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: April 02, 2015, 06:24:53 AM
Happy Easter...

118  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: April 02, 2015, 12:14:53 AM
Customer goes berserk for Chicken McNuggets(TM) at McDonalds drive-thru (NSFW for language):

<a href="" target="_blank"></a>

119  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: March 31, 2015, 09:54:32 PM
This is hilarious! Buddy just rants (NSFW) about a road full of potholes.

<a href="" target="_blank"></a>

#WhoWillBuildTheRoads? smiley

120  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Why are car stereos so flimsy? on: March 31, 2015, 11:28:53 AM
I have no recommendations, so feel free to skip reading. smiley

But you mention how flimsy things are. I've noticed that across a broad spectrum of products. What I've seen, personally, is that you can expect the product to fail very shortly after the warranty expires. That to me says that these people are spectacular engineers! It can't be easy to design a valve (or whatever) to fail after X years of use. But I've found in multiple products that it's like clockwork.

On a meta level, you likely won't get the best advice here at DC on car stereos specifically, as the perspective that you're likely to get is more software-centric. An actual car audio forum will likely have better answers to some questions. Still... there are more focused questions where you'll get better answers here.

I do audio software, but I also have some non-traditional views on some of the "accepted dogma" in some sectors. Those are largely irrelevant considerations for most consumers though. But I say that to point out that you will find differing opinions in technical areas. Also, when you see opinions on topics, consider who it is coming from, and whether you agree with their conclusions on some issues.

As for my own car stereo... I only listen to the government run station, and mostly for the parliamentary debates. smiley So, my car audio needs are pretty low on the totem pole. smiley

Good luck with finding something that fits for you! Cool
121  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Programming/Coder humor on: March 31, 2015, 11:11:11 AM
I didn't watch the youtube, but I will admit that this is the kind of logic that my mind goes through for a lot of arithmetic.  It works for me, but I'm not sure I could explain it well to someone else. And I am certain that it's not a mechanism that works for everyone.

I think in the same way for math, but then again, I tend to get a lot of flak from people for the way I think.

However, my guess is that math classes were boring for you because they were easy. Am I right there? The beginning of boredom with math for me was in grade 1 because it was all too easy. I caught Hell for working ahead in my math book.

I think that there are different ways of approaching arithmetic, and that there's not 'one-true-method' that works for everyone.  Each person should find their own best way to working out basic arithmetic, and I think the best elementary math teachers are the ones who are able to somehow guide different students to the different ways that work for them.

That seems like sage advice! smiley  Thmbsup

One of the things that I love in this thread, is how those numbers, frequencies and patterns can turn into a laugh.

And I'll stand beside the 6-pack theory for counting! It's as valid as any! smiley Or, once you can actually count in hex, it's pretty easy! Cool
122  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Programming/Coder humor on: March 31, 2015, 03:51:50 AM
It would be funny if a whole class of those kinds of kids showed up in high school Algebra 1 and confidently parrots back versions of that speech. Teacher would do a double facepalm!

There was a study where small groups solved problems to come up with the wrong answer. 1 person in the group wasn't "in" on the fix, but usually went along with it. I forget where I read that though. I guess you could get a class to "fix" the answers they give the teacher to mess with them. smiley
123  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: TV shows thread on: March 31, 2015, 03:41:11 AM
It really doesn't matter about the blessing of the liberties.  It's the nature of the liberties in and of themselves.  I was going to avoid bringing them up, but others have said the same things that have struck me over time in a much better way than I, so I'll just leave this here:


I'm not expecting understanding- one needs to be in the situation to understand it to an extent.  It's just pervasive and I feel it, so it is affecting my enjoyment of it.  And this isn't the only person that has noticed it- and from a very different perspective because they didn't really 'get' it, other than the fact that it exists.

I was curious why you weren't enjoying TWD, so I read the article.

I noticed that a long time ago. It's one of the ways I "predict" what's going to happen in a series/film. There aren't many shows that have real surprises -- they're often formulaic in one way or another.

There are a lot of common themes in movies and TV shows, and they "cue you in" on one level or another as to what is going to happen. I doubt most people ever notice any of them, and I'm sure there are more that I'm unaware of.

There are things that used to bother me. I just try to ignore them now. Or, if it's too much, I just don't watch, e.g. I just can't watch CSI or NCIS.

124  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Programming/Coder humor on: March 30, 2015, 09:16:06 AM
...And I thought that the new math was bad...but this new education system has really got me baffled. Sad

Oh, you mean how 3x4=11?

The Common Core way is just silly. Here's one mom showing 8+5.

Like... geez... Anyways, here's the logic:

Make the 8 a 10 and break down the 5 into 2 and 3, with the 2 going into the 8 to make 10, then add 3 to the 10 to get 13.

Who thinks like that?

Here's the natural way...

So, 8 and 5... well, 5 is 1 short of a 6-pack, so take 1 from the 8 to add to the 5 to get that 6-pack. But there's no such thing as a 7-pack, so take 1 from that and you've got 1 and 2 x 6-packs, and everyone knows 2 x 6-packs is a 12-pack, so add the 1 to the 12-pack and you've got 13 beer.

This is called "Drunken Math" and it is infinitely versatile.

For example... say someone doesn't drink a lot of beer. Let's just say they're one of those lilly-livered sissies that drinks overly sugary fizzy wine or vodka coolers that come in 4-packs... It still works. 5 is a 4-pack plus 1 more, and 8 is 2 x 4-packs, which gives you 12 plus the 1, so 13 sissy coolers.

Now, for the seasoned alcoholics out there, we can even jump straight to vodka, and the math starts to get more exciting.

For the moment, we'll assume that mickey's are for sissies (which are often 12 ounces, which factors into 2x2x3), so we're only talking about 26ers (has 13 in there as a prime factor), 40-pounders, and litre bottles. Shots range from 30 to 60 ml, with a 1.5 ounce shot being 43 ml (about), which is prime. Like, good grief! How many ways are there to count and add? Many! So many ways!  

Drunken Math also works with other bases, such as sexagesimal. For example...

Tom, Dick and Harry are out drinking. After 1 hour, Tom drives home while Dick and Harry continue to drink for another 5 hours. Dick bails and Harry sticks around for 1 more for the road, or crawl as it were. How many hours and minutes in total did they all drink? Easy!

Tom drank 1 hour
Dick drank 1+5=6 hours
Harry drank 1+5+1=7 hours
So they drank 14 hours or 840 minutes. But probably more like 15 hours or 900 minutes because Harry likely snuck a few along for the walk home, which is about an hour away give or take.

Asking how much they drank is another matter though as we don't know if they upchucked after leaving, and it's likely that Harry did, but whether or not chucking counts negatively hasn't been strictly defined.

But, the time thing there is really easy because we're only working in round numbers like 60 or 360.

There are so many, many nice round and lovely numbers out there. Here are just a few of my favs in order! (Some truncated.)

  • 0
  • 1
  • 1.618
  • 2
  • 2.718
  • 3
  • 3.14
  • 5
  • 6.28
  • 7
  • 8
  • 11
  • 13
  • 17
  • 19
  • 21
  • 23
  • 29
  • 31
  • 34
  • 37
  • 41
  • 43
  • 47
  • 53
  • 55
  • 59
  • 61
  • 67
  • 71
  • 73
  • 79
  • 83
  • 89
  • 97
  • 144
  • 233
  • 377
  • 610
  • 987

Now, some deserve multiple mentions, but nobody wants to see 0, 1 and 2 win every single time. Like, the fractional numbers have it hard enough already!

I should've been a math teacher. tongue °°hic°°°
125  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Programming/Coder humor on: March 30, 2015, 08:28:38 AM
I think we can count on drunks to have wine with their meals, don't you?  Wink

Y'know... I hate to sort of call you out in public, but you've kind of misunderstood things here...

Wine *IS* a meal. tongue Grin

(Beer is a snack.)

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