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51  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Once again, magically expensive items are only different in your mind on: April 07, 2014, 08:44:17 PM
Slashdot reports a study which shows that even elite  musicians can't tell the difference between what-are-believed-to-be legendary hyper-expensive instruments and modern instruments:

http://news.sciencemag.or...ry-violins-modern-fiddles

...

When it comes to appreciating these hyper expensive items -- the perceived quality is all in your head.  If you think you are experiencing something super expensive, you tend to experience it as being significantly better.

Break out of the cycle -- find alternative way to perceive quality other than money!

Hmm, I think the thread title here might be a little ...heh ... "tinged" with just a dash of snark. I think the general consensus is that "properly made modern violins are getting very very good". It's one of those where you have to be really sure exactly what questions are being asked. Rather than reinvent it all, I'll give you a blog by one of the members and the Slashdot thread.

http://www.violinist.com/blog/laurie/20121/13039/
http://entertainment.slas...arius-and-a-modern-violin

52  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Best Investigative Journalism magazines or webistes? on: April 01, 2014, 04:20:02 PM

I think it might still depend on living with a "slant". You can have "legit" sites that are left, right, or (rarely) center. But even if the first two have an overall tone, I think you are asking if the reporting looks fair, vs the growing trend to News-Spam we're risking on sites whose only goal is ad impressions on 400 word summaries.

53  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Nice blog post on the parasitic software hosting sites bundling junkware on: April 01, 2014, 04:16:26 PM
Although this link is to a how-to article called 'Remove Trovi.com redirect', it turned out to be a good way to clean up my machine from other crapware problems.
It gives links to four cleaner programs and tells what order to run them in.
It's recommended by malwaretips.com as a sub-link.

Tnx for the head's-up on Softonic.


Inspired by you, I ran an old standby, Mark Russinovich's "Rootkit Revealer".
(Forgive the now-Microsoft wrapping!)
http://technet.microsoft....ysinternals/bb897445.aspx

Mark R. made his name as a 1-man Windows expert and MS just kept offering him money until they snapped him up. I think he's a good guy. He made his "fame" in the Sony Rootkit mess by providing key details.

But bird's eye what's we're seeing is there's this whole class of junk that "good ol' " MS Security Essentials isn't picking up. Comp Security is Medium Hard. To be honest as a medium grade user I bet my meachine is only 80% at this point. There's just so much to do. But 80% is better than 20% etc...

54  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Payment Services - opinions and ratings? on: April 01, 2014, 04:10:29 PM
Fascinating Info Mouser, that would have been hard to get anywhere else!

55  Other Software / Developer's Corner / Re: How The Most Expensive Game Jam In History Crashed And Burned In A Single Day on: April 01, 2014, 04:04:40 PM
That's a pity, because I don't know how it could have been stopped once the Big Media train started rolling out of the station.

My best layman's intro to game jams is Ludum Dare. Sure, a lot of the resulting games aren't my thing, but I (vaguely!) recall a couple here and there were worth a fun afternoon of silly true-indie gaming fun. (And I keep trying to invent concepts for jam-games! The Throw-Spiders-Out is my best one, but my satirical runner up is "how hard can you make it for the user to install their program?" based on that other thread, via several times before.)

This is where my memory begins to get fuzzy so don't quote me, but I think I recall a few quote snippets out of Ludum Dare interviews that would have nailed the original spirit. They went roughly "So we had this idea and this idea and this idea and it was an awesome concept. But then of our team, the Graphics guy got stuck making the renderer behave, the Gameplay guy got his part to work and we didn't like actually playing it, and the admin girl almost ripped her hair out trying to hold the micro chores together." A little honest yet soft film editing and that could have worked. (Plus, a few "victory" scenes of another team who just hit the sweet spot and started cruising.)

I notice they say this thing tanked on *day one*. Ten hours isn't a lot of time for anyone to realize something is out of control. This isn't a five week project. So maybe someone even smelled the rat, but more rats appear in the two hours it takes you to kill the first one...

56  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Nice blog post on the parasitic software hosting sites bundling junkware on: April 01, 2014, 03:50:22 PM
Although this link is to a how-to article called 'Remove Trovi.com redirect', it turned out to be a good way to clean up my machine from other crapware problems.
It gives links to four cleaner programs and tells what order to run them in.
It's recommended by malwaretips.com as a sub-link.

Tnx for the head's-up on Softonic.


I'm going to try (some/all) of that soon, just to see what few goodies got left behind despite my efforts.

57  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Nice blog post on the parasitic software hosting sites bundling junkware on: April 01, 2014, 03:45:13 PM
Tnx for the head's-up on Softonic.

Yeah, I've been well aware of CNet's junk, but one time apparently I saw a Softonic one and wasn't aware of their reputation! However I do know in general to always go Custom, so I think my instincts at the time evaded most of their stuff, but it's hard to ever really know they haven't pulled one last trick.

58  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Payment Services - opinions and ratings? on: April 01, 2014, 02:10:01 PM

Something on the Goat Simulator page caught my eye enough for a decent little thread all its own.

Web Payment Services

One of the ones they offered was AmazonPayments.

It was my impression that Amazon is one of the "less evil" companies these days, right? They made their name by "doing something real world", which is to super-warehouse actual stuff and just blast the economy of scale sky high. Sure they play with the info they get along the way, but their core business is putting stores out of business ... uh ... selling the biggest inventory in the world cheaply.

So maybe their payment service might just be reputable?

Compare and contrast the other choice offered was Paypal...


59  Other Software / DC Gamer Club / Re: 86% of Gamers Prefer Free Games With Advertisements on: April 01, 2014, 01:49:36 PM
86% of Gamers Prefer Free Games With Advertisements?

I must be among the elite 14%, since I prefer free games without.  cheesy

Yep. Because while they conveniently didn't report their study, whatever huge surge in casual "gamers" then creates a decently sized 14%, of whom *lots* of them are protesting! (Hooray for weighted statistics!)

So you can almost say that "86% of gamers prefer free games with ads. Meanwhile 86% of the remainder is posting their frustration in comments!"

Cool
60  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Nice blog post on the parasitic software hosting sites bundling junkware on: April 01, 2014, 09:04:34 AM
Per 40hz, maybe we can spin that angle in all sorts of ways. Since it's the exact same problem in all sorts of ways, aka only some five big name companies at first, let's get a friendly lawyer to draft the first warning letter that x program is not supposed to be "packaged/wrapped etc". Putt out all the bug guns. Copyright like you were saying, Comp Abuse Act, and others.

Then again from that (or another) attorney to be on standby because the first draft of the motion is the same. "You were presented with the do-not-tamper letter and ignored it...".

How deep do their tendrils go? We all joke about how many lawyers are out there, some with a little spare time on hand... what if some pro-bono counsel was on tap at level 3 to push it all the way!?

I vaguely have heard here and there about attorneys pushing 70 "aka nothing to lose", so why not go out with a few landscape changing suits for their posterity!?

61  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: April 1, 2014 on: April 01, 2014, 05:07:39 AM
NSA: Log into mynsa dot com to view and download your data

Or maybe this? Except it's not!
http://www.nsa.gov/kids/home.shtml

62  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Nice blog post on the parasitic software hosting sites bundling junkware on: April 01, 2014, 04:38:50 AM

Not a bad post, but the company behind it looks like they've been changing their branding a lot in the background.

The blog post leads to this wordpress homepage that they picked to be "simple and blogged":
http://thundercloud.net/infoave/new/

I often find it useful to check "other things on the same top domain". One earlier version was this:
http://thundercloud.net/start/index.htm

Then one with a definitely older design is at the very top:
http://thundercloud.net/

Their business model is selling direct connection computer repair services. So the blog post is an "info loss-leader". The only thing then becomes that I as a user have no way to attest how reputable they are to fork out $90-120 for a repair session!

63  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Cute jokes' thread on: April 01, 2014, 03:53:06 AM
Actually when trapped in places with the wrong level of ambient bustle, getting someone on a cell phone right next to you is really annoying! I've thought about just pulling out my phone and making up a random fake call just to compete in noise-space!

You mean like this?

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LtdpJlZ07u4" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LtdpJlZ07u4</a>

Yep! Though with the handset phone as an extra prop. But yeah.

64  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Cute jokes' thread on: March 31, 2014, 07:58:12 PM
I don't have twitter or instagram, so I walk the streets, shouting at random people. I'm screaming out what it looks like in my place, and what I do, what I am eating and drinking, what I am hearing, watching, (not) thinking, what clothes I am wearing, and what my pet just did.

So far I have 3 followers, yeah! One I think is a doctor, the other two are policemen.

Actually when trapped in places with the wrong level of ambient bustle, getting someone on a cell phone right next to you is really annoying! I've thought about just pulling out my phone and making up a random fake call just to compete in noise-space!
65  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Cute jokes' thread on: March 31, 2014, 07:56:52 PM

And via member DMD elsewhere, I decided not to spoil his thread but his awesome new word "splinterface" is just begging for a Lady Gaga parody!

 cheesy
66  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Hypothetical hypothetical question on: March 31, 2014, 01:07:38 PM
I don't think it's really possible to investigate or research something without leaving some footprint behind. Especially if you do it mostly online where everything is ultimately trackable. And it's probably a quixotic quest to even attempt to get completely around that.
...
I get tapped a couple of  times a month on average by somebody who wants to discuss an "idea" for something. Usually a new business. I tell them to put together a preliminary business and marketing plan first and then I'll be happy to discuss it with them. That's usually the last I ever hear from them - either because they can't be bothered to do the work of putting a plan together - or because they did do a plan and realized their idea either wasn't (a) doable or (b) worth doing.

I've come to believe planning, execution and timing are the three most critical factors for success in almost every human endeavor. A brilliant or original idea lands somewhere around eighth in importance. And originality is vastly overrated when it comes to building or conducting a business. So is genius, whatever that overused word still means.

I'll try a slightly different perspective.

The idea of "noise" is used a lot - there's just a lot of stuff going on over the web. It feels like a topic in AI how you would flag and bubble up exactly when the one time a Mr. MilesAhead looked up stuff, that it would ricochet around so fast.

Regarding all that planning etc, I'd go the other way - talk is cheap and educational. Instead imagine what the "sunk costs" would be: how hard is it to do a cute little hobby prototype of the idea? Then you and a few friends goof off with it. If there's "burgeoning excitement" then you go back and do the plan for an investor.

Instead if it takes 100k just to get in the discussion, that's when it reverts back to 40hz's notes - in better years I could spend up to a grand goofing off with a prototype of something, but anyone risking 100k and then cascades more, better have it locked down.

Also, what is the timeline? A media project "just gets made", then you are sorta done except marketing and follow up. But a big business has to plan for years of losses before it flips, or else it starts with a bang but then becomes Atari in 1984.

67  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: March 29, 2014, 11:19:58 AM
Picture apparently recovered from a camera in the wreckage of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 may shed some light on the possible cause of the accident:

Heh that's funny Iain, but where is that picture originally fun? (Or Photoshopped?)

68  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Microsoft: All your data are belong to us. on: March 28, 2014, 11:05:07 PM
News just in...

Microsoft: Let's be clear, WE won't read your email – but the cops will

Quote
Today Microsoft's general counsel Brad Smith has announced Microsoft has changed its policy again. From now on, Redmond staff won't probe the email inboxes of its customers, but will outsource the job to law enforcement.

So they won't read your email themselves, but they still reserve the right to rummage through any documents you have stored in their cloud.

It's time to update a children's campfire classic:

"Microsoft read the emails from the email jar."
"Who us?" "Yes you!"
"Well okay, but now we we wont." "Then who?"
"The cops!" "Well the cops found something. Then they told you."
"Who us?" "Yes you!"
"Couldn't be." "Then who?"
"Yahoo!" "So Yahoo read the emails from the email jar?"
"Yes." "But you provide some of Yahoo's back end services."
"Uh, but not those!"

 Angry

69  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: March 28, 2014, 06:22:06 PM
Huntsmanw - pretty harmless to people, I generally let them wander around the walls until they happen to stray to a spot within reach of take-away container and cardboard smiley

Then they get tossed outside to become Kookaburra food or eventually find their way back inside.

Heh you guys know you can make an entire Ludum Dare out of your comments here! This one has the makings of gaming app gold!

Cool

A spider game app?   huh  I don't get it.

Yeah Crabby, you have to keep tossing the spiders outside, and they keep crawling in, so like at level 5 they just take over your house and win.  : )

70  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: March 26, 2014, 04:07:28 AM

Ever have that feeling when you lost your keys and your mobile phone?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K58H-1IIdlQ

71  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Microsoft Word under attack. Don't open RTF files! on: March 25, 2014, 09:20:02 PM
Looks like all of them to me...although one mitigation they didn't clarify is that of you set the .rtf association to WordPad, you're ok (or at least appear to be so far..).

Or LibreOffice/Notepad2/KingsoftWriter/other?

I only use rtf files when I am being utterly lazy because plain txt doesn't want to capture fonts. The rest of the time I guess I use 2003 style .doc (LibreOffice I am looking at you, quit burying it in the settings!)

In a silly other note it's amusing no one has yet (that I know of) made a Botnet Detector game.
"Your machine has been Pwned. What do you want to do?

A. Send 1.6 million emails
B. Participate in a DDOS
C. Play Minefield like it is 1997
"
72  DonationCoder.com Software / Finished Programs / Re: DONE: Blank full-screen background, solid movable circle replacing cursor on: March 25, 2014, 09:12:12 PM
Sure and thank you! I'm glad you like it.  cheesy

See? I knew one of the "Snacker Hotshots" could do it!

Heh how many lines of code did it take Chris? : )

73  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: March 25, 2014, 09:06:37 PM
Nothing like a good game of chess.
 (see attachment in previous post)

Haha!

Did y'all know it is currently time of the "Candidates" tournament that picks the player to challenge for the World Chess Championship? A few grandmasters do commentary, and I can almost imitate one of the British ones using your set!

"Anand is doing well indeed. In my opinion Mamedyarov's best move is to move the Tequila to the nice square c5..."
 Cool
74  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: March 24, 2014, 10:51:46 PM
Huntsmanw - pretty harmless to people, I generally let them wander around the walls until they happen to stray to a spot within reach of take-away container and cardboard smiley

Then they get tossed outside to become Kookaburra food or eventually find their way back inside.

Heh you guys know you can make an entire Ludum Dare out of your comments here! This one has the makings of gaming app gold!

Cool
75  Main Area and Open Discussion / Non-Windows Software / Re: *NIX - List of 100 Open Source Replacements for Popular Security Tools on: March 24, 2014, 04:05:47 PM
That article loses a lot of credibility with me when it lists Microsoft Internet Explorer as a "Popular Security Tool"  tongue

Sing-a-long!
100 "Security Tools" on the wall, 100 "Security Tools" ... take IE down, Pwn it to the ground, 99 (actual) security tools on the wall!

 Grin cheesy
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