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5876  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: BBC - inspiration? on: September 21, 2011, 05:51:47 AM
Windows 8, etc. etc. ...
or was it just a rhetorical question smiley

Bingo! Must be the "Metro Edition" of the news. Grin

5877  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Linux game devs pirate their own game on: September 21, 2011, 05:48:48 AM
It was a nice move. Unfortunately, there's a large gimmick aspect to it. So I don't know if it's something that would net a similar benefit long term or with repeated use.

Not that it matters...

I think it will only be a short time before most nations adopt legislation similar to Korea's "real name verification" anti-anonymity laws. So far, the UK, France, Australia, and the US have legislation pending that would basically require a license to access and use the Internet.

And with the huge amount of media and entertainment industry lobby money behind the push, (and several government security agencies jockeying for ever bigger roles and budgets) it will only be a matter of time.
 Sad

5878  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Mother****ing placeholder text mother****er (Warning: Image contains bad words) on: September 21, 2011, 05:31:45 AM
@Ren - How's the vodka supply holding up?  tongue

5879  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: BBC - inspiration? on: September 21, 2011, 05:29:37 AM
Did you check the latest Wordpress themes page to see if it's there?  tongue

5880  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Stallman on Android on: September 21, 2011, 05:01:28 AM
The phrase "Open Source" has been hijacked almost as completely as has the term "Green" when referring to eco-friendly or "Natural" when referring to food products.

For most people in the software industry that are considering implementing an "open" initiative, "open" means little more than "getting free debugging and coding from the public." As Stallman so aptly noted:

Quote
The non-release of two versions' source code raises concern that Google might intend to turn Android proprietary permanently; that the release of some Android versions as free software may have been a temporary ploy to get community assistance in improving a proprietary software product. Let us hope does not happen.

Let us hope it does not happen?


Good grief! Can we all stop kidding ourselves about Google?

I'm generally not a fan of Forbes or its columnists. But Bob Evans did an editorial piece that sums up why it doesn't make sense to continue seeing Google as anything other than what it is: a mega-corporation

Quote
Google Needs To Drop Its "Do No Evil" Thing

Google’s a marvelous company whose astonishing success sometimes makes it hard to fathom that it is only 13 years old. But like all precocious teenagers, Google is finding that the process of growing up isn’t just about getting bigger—it’s about getting smarter.

And one smart thing Google should do right now is formally and permanently drop its “Do No Evil” mantra.

Because behavior that’s cute in a little kid can, in a grown-up, be cloying at best and disingenuous or even dishonest at worst.

I’m not about to trot out a laundry list of all the trouble or near-trouble that Google has gotten itself into in the past five or so years, but we’ve all seen more than a little evidence over that time that Google’s interpretation of what is meant by privacy often clashes severely with that of mere mortals.

To Google’s credit, it has retrenched quickly from its invasive forays, done the mea culpa thing, and promised to sin no more. But I have to ask:

Before the fact, where was the “Do No Evil” thing? Why didn’t their slogan protect them from their baser instincts? How could a company that says it lives by the creed of “Do No Evil” have, in fact, committed a range of acts that, if not overtly evil, were surely not deemed to be good?

Important note: The phrase Google originally used was "You can make money without doing evil." Google has since retooled the wordage to read: "Don't be evil."

Which is an important difference for Google's hive brain.  undecided

Google's own Matt Cutts has a vaguely apologist post on G+ which attempts to address the very real (to his mind) difference between "Do no" and "Don't be."

Quote
I think "Do no evil" is an impossible standard: reasonable people can disagree on which choices are evil, and for different reasons. I prefer "Don't be evil" because it leaves room for honest disagreements, but still encourages Google to strive to make the world better.

"Leaves room...?"  "Encourages Google to strive...?"  Wow! That's great Matt. That's giving yourself enough wiggle room that you could have the entire world over for a lambada party.

Hmm...Maybe instead of "Don't Be Evil" they could just say...nothing?

Official silence may not be as catchy as a pithy phrase. But people are much more willing to tolerate aloofness (or greed) than they are to condone hypocrisy.

Hopefully Google will eventually realize that.  Cool


5881  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Tuesday's online debate: Windows Right vs. Windows Wrong on: September 20, 2011, 07:56:28 PM
Must be a slow week.

Because once again ZDNet puts two of its shills up on a podium to start a faux debate in order to generate comments and blog links...

How utterly predictable.  Grin
5882  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: The Boozernet... on: September 20, 2011, 11:58:38 AM
Yet another one of several reasons why I seldom go to chat rooms. Suboptimal signal to noise ratio.  Cool
5883  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: When good tech ideas go bad on: September 20, 2011, 09:11:59 AM
Thanks Z! Good article. More please?

----

Read the business history of Commodore Computer for one textbook example after another of shooting yourself in the foot.

This is a company that "had it all" in their hands at least three separate times. And each time rampant egos and corporate hubris, combined with garden variety stupidity (and market change) sank them.

If Commodore played it's cards right, Apple would have been just another footnote in the history of personal computing. And an emaciated and crazed-looking Steve Jobs (affectionately known as The Madman of Cupertino) would likely still be seen wandering the streets of Silicon Valley looking for somebody else's "genius invention" to hitch a ride on and promulgate as his own...

So RIP Commodore. Vaya con Dios...

On second thought, considering how badly they handled nearly everything, it probably served 'em right. undecided
5884  Special User Sections / The Getting Organized Experiment of 2009 / Re: Cyborganize now has video on: September 20, 2011, 08:50:55 AM
^Glad it piqued your interest!

Neil Larson deserves to be much better known and acknowledged than he is. IMO he's right up there with Brickland, Herzfeld, and all the other lesser-sung greats who's concepts are found in much of what we use and take for granted today.

If anybody is curious about what info or knowledge "annealing" is (and some of the confusion it creates for people) check out this link.  Cool
5885  Special User Sections / The Getting Organized Experiment of 2009 / Re: Cyborganize now has video on: September 20, 2011, 07:20:34 AM
@josephbuchignani

Welcome to Donation Coder! It's always great when a program author joins in on a discussion of their own project. Thmbsup

My second best choice after BrainStormWFO would probably be MaxThink

I'm a big fan of Maxthink from as far back as its DOS days.

You might want to consider contacting it's creator:

Neil Larson
510-962-4506
nlarson@pacbell.net

He might be interested in doing something with you. He had some additional products that were used in conjunction with Maxhhink (i.e. Houdini, TransText, etc) to allow for what he called "information annealing" which was a process of hyperlinked document editing and refinement very similar to what you're doing. Many have called it the precursor to the Wiki. In some respects, it anticipated the core idea behind HTML documents and Web.

There used to be a Wikipedia page on Larson and information annealing, but it doesn't seem to exist any more. There's a minor reference to Larson in an article on browsers (see below), but that seems to be about it.

Quote
In 1984, expanding on ideas from futurist Ted Nelson, Neil Larson's commercial DOS Maxthink outline program added angle bracket hypertext jumps (adopted by later web browsers) to and from ASCII, batch, and other Maxthink files up to 32 levels deep.[citation needed] In 1986 he released his DOS Houdini network browser program that supported 2500 topics cross-connected with 7500 links in each file along with hypertext links among unlimited numbers of external ASCII, batch, and other Houdini files.[citation needed]

In 1987, these capabilities were included in his then popular shareware DOS file browser programs HyperRez (memory resident) and PC Hypertext (which also added jumps to programs, editors, graphic files containing hot spots jumps, and cross-linked theraurus/glossary files). These programs introduced many to the browser concept and 20 years later, Google still lists 3,000,000 references to PC Hypertext. In 1989, he created both HyperBBS and HyperLan which both allow multiple users to create/edit both topics and jumps for information and knowledge annealing which, in concept, the columnist John C. Dvorak says pre-dated Wiki by many years.[citation needed]

From 1987 on, he also created TransText (hypertext word processor) and many utilities for rapidly building large scale knowledge systems ... and in 1989 helped produce for one of the big eight accounting firms[citation needed] a comprehensive knowledge system of integrating all accounting laws/regulations into a CDROM containing 50,000 files with 200,000 hypertext jumps. Additionally, the Lynx (a very early web-based browser) development history notes their project origin was based on the browser concepts from Neil Larson and Maxthink.[1] In 1989, he declined joining the MOSAIC browser team with his preference for knowledge/wisdom creation over distributing information ... a problem he says is still not solved by today's internet.


That last sentence sounds very close to what you're striving for.  smiley

5886  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: UI Roast #1: cruel but harmless fun! on: September 19, 2011, 04:00:13 PM
Wow! Reminds me of this guy I went to high school with. He was the worst dancer of any of us. (And that's saying something since none of us could dance to save our lives.) What he did looked like a cross between a grand mal seizure and a man falling down three flights of stairs.

He was quite proud of the fact he made up all his own 'moves' on the dance floor.

***

So...I'm guessing this coder's first language was Perl and his second was php?  tongue
5887  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Advice Needed: Fixing Pentium 4 PC with Conficker virus on: September 16, 2011, 07:39:46 PM
Say the word, it's yours. Always glad to help a fellow DCer. Thmbsup
5888  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: The Boozernet... on: September 16, 2011, 07:37:54 PM
Psht.  You've not experienced some of the nightmares I have in consulting.  Some of the code drives you to drink.

ROFLMAO!

That's probably why, when I reached a career crossroad many years ago, I went down the systems rather than the dev path. Especially after a previous three year foray into code development.
 Grin
5889  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Advice Needed: Fixing Pentium 4 PC with Conficker virus on: September 16, 2011, 07:17:52 PM
Is it possible to install Windows on a drive that is located in an external drive case, then relocate the HDD back to the original computer?

Depends. You could copy the Windows install CD over onto an external HD, then boot off a Windows setup floppy and point it to use the files on the external drive for an installation in the absence of a CD drive. But you couldn't do a setup (on a different machine) to the external HD, and then put that in your Dad's machine since the hardware configuration the setup saw would be different and probably wouldn't work. It could also cause activation problems since Genuine Advantage compiles a hash code based on the BIOS, mobo, and network card (MAC address) it finds. So even if the two machines had "identical" hardware configurations, there could still be problems getting it to activate..

But tell you what...if it's just a busted CD/DVD drive that's complicating your life, I have about a dozen surplus working optical drives sitting on the shelf. And I'd be more than happy to send you one. PM a shipping address and it will be on its way pronto with my compliments.
 smiley Thmbsup

5890  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: The Boozernet... on: September 16, 2011, 06:42:33 PM
And I get drunk even less than that. And I have a firm belief that computers and booze don't mix*, so there will be no drunk coding, posting, gaming, online shopping or anything else from me...ever.

Gotta agree with App.

FWIW (and all kidding aside) I can honestly say I never met anybody I liked more with a drink in them than without. Especially if they happened to be female.

But maybe that's just me?  smiley


5891  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Is Windows 7 boot management more broken than ever? on: September 16, 2011, 06:25:50 PM
@40hz
The connector is purple, green was for the mouse....damn, just now I gave away my "computer age" away   tongue

You're correct. I neglected to look. It is puke purple. Grin (Thx for catching it.  redface)
5892  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Advice Needed: Fixing Pentium 4 PC with Conficker virus on: September 16, 2011, 06:16:21 PM
I'm wondering if I removed the hard drive and put it in an external HD enclosure, hooked that to a PC running MSE, if we could disinfect the drive, then reinstall it in his Pentium-4 desktop PC and go from there.

a) You could try your idea of removing it so the executables are inactive and doing the disinfect from a separate known to be secure PC. That's pretty much SOP when a disk is infected that badly.

b) Better would be just getting the data files off that drive the same way and then doing a wipe, repartation & reformat + clean install of Windows (followed by ALL the updates) and MSE. That way you're 100% sure whatever was on there is totally gone.

My inclination would be to go with option-b unless you no longer have installation media for his OS and apps. Considering the age of the BIOS on his PC I'm guessing locating them might be a problem?

Luck! Thmbsup


Addendum: +1 w/rgdot  smiley You can download the latest 32-bit MSE definitions at this link. See KB971606 for full details. Link here.
5893  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: The Boozernet... on: September 16, 2011, 03:47:08 PM
It's different in the "systems" end of the shark tank.

Anybody who lays hands on a server or network device while loaded up with "Dutch Courage" is either: (a) crazy (b) has a death wish; or, (c) has really really really good Errors & Omissions insurance coverage. Coverage which is about to get significantly more expensive when it next comes up for renewal - assuming your policy provider decides to renew.
 huh Grin
5894  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Is Windows 7 boot management more broken than ever? on: September 16, 2011, 12:11:53 PM
Usually with a multi-media keyboard (which is part of why I hate them). A lot of the MM Keyboards like to toggle the default usage of the F-key row between its intended/proper purpose and a bunch of daffy media shortcuts. This behavior makes the keyboard completely useless unless you can remember which hotkey combo will force the keyboard to go back to acting right.

Yeppers! Thmbsup

But it happened to me with an HP keyboard,
so I had to hookup another keyboard to get to my boot options.

[attach]

Which is why we all still keep that P.O.S. cheap-ass (USB 101-key w/puke green PS/2 adapter)  keyboard somebody gave us (and which we wouldn't be caught dead trying to type on) for just such occasions.
 Grin

5895  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Is Windows 7 boot management more broken than ever? on: September 15, 2011, 07:16:03 PM
Something "funny" just occurred to me... huh

In the NIX world there's been a long tradition and practice of having "the boot" in a separate partition. And there were (still are) several good reasons for doing so.

But why Microsoft did it that way - and then destroyed much of the reason for doing so by not allowing you to assign which drive it gets put on - is a bit of a mystery to me.

Does anybody actually know why Windows 7 now has a separate boot partition? I mean seriously know why?

(Non-scatological replies only please...)  Wink

5896  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Is Windows 7 boot management more broken than ever? on: September 15, 2011, 04:00:00 PM
AFAIK Win7 always selects the (SATA) boot drive from the first 'active' flagged drive in the SATA port sequence as determined by your BIOS settings.

Some of the newer BIOSes allow you to define which SATA port to boot from. But many don't - so you're stuck with the numeric sequence.

FWIW, I've run into this hassle often enough that I usually take the easy way out and temporarily unplug all the drives other than the the one I want to install Win7on. Cuts down on bad surprises down the road.

And you're right. Win7 is braindead in that regard. Angry

5897  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Fairware: an interesting experiment in getting paid for Open Source on: September 13, 2011, 01:02:25 PM
OK DC coders! Paul started the ball rolling...  Thmbsup



5898  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Fairware: an interesting experiment in getting paid for Open Source on: September 13, 2011, 12:15:04 PM
On the other hand, people who have no guarantee how much their donations might impact a smaller NANY project or an older less used AHK program would more likely be less urged to donate to that specific developer unless the program gains a radical overhaul or it's via a bundle and a regular donator just happened to catch up on the thread that introduced all these.

Again, what is the real goal here?

Are you looking to:

Reward/punish coders for certain behaviors?
Locate and obtain interesting software?
Get your software out where it can be found?
Raise public awareness about coders and coding?
Make some money?
Not lose money?
Just break even?
Get big?
Stay small?
Act as a springboard for a commercial software venture?
Become an adjunct of the OS or FOSS movement?
Mainly hang out and rap with like-minded people?
Provide a trusted buying point for independent coder products?

I ask because a lot of this seems to be going in many of different directions. So...how about starting the ball rolling by coming up with a position statement or manifesto that spells out the big goal or goals with the ultimate aim of coming up with a concrete (as in doable) project with a workable roadmap for how to get there?

Coders are logical, organized people. Or so I'm told. Why not treat this 'problem' the same way you would a major coding project and see where that leads?

Just thinking out loud here... Cool

Addendum: I really like the humble indie bundle. Ive bought in on more than one of those. But I think it sends the wrong message sometimes. Too much emphasis on "humble" and "indie" and "bargain" and nowhere near enough on the exceptional quality, variety, and value to be found there.

Gotta stop with the "Aw shucks!" routine and start claiming your rightful place up there with the so-called big players. Because if you're not doing something good enough to stand on it's own merits, why bother at all?

Seriously guys! You have got to stop putting yourselves down so much. You need to build a reputation that you're bright, responsive, and innovative. And that your code is as good as anything else that's out there. And 90% of that reputation can be had just by saying it's so.

Many times the only differences between a professional and an amateur is that the professional thinks of him or herself as a professional, acts accordingly - and has a business card. Thmbsup








 
5899  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Fairware: an interesting experiment in getting paid for Open Source on: September 13, 2011, 10:15:51 AM
+1

I think Mouser's idea is a clean and elegant way to both deal with the issue, and possibly change some people's way of thinking in the process.

It's also something that would be relatively simple to implement and experiment with.

At the very least it would go a long way towards moving the basis of this discussion to observable fact and behaviors - and away from the "I feel" nature of many of these conversations.

Why "believe" or "feel" or "suspect" when a little real-world testing could provide much better information? Like James Thurber said: "A pinch of probably is worth a pound of perhaps."

Note: when I used the phrase "don't care" I meant it in the sense of "not being actively concerned about" rather than  "not mattering ever or at all." Just thought I should clarify that point.
 smiley

5900  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Fairware: an interesting experiment in getting paid for Open Source on: September 13, 2011, 07:53:52 AM
Just thinking outside the lines for a moment...

I wonder if the notion of "pay what you want" or "please donate" is anywhere near as important to the buyers as it is to those who are making such offers. I ask, because from what I've seen, most people don't seem to care all that much.

I bring this up because in the early days of my company, we had the notion that the big problem with most systems support companies was that they tried to keep their customers "captive." And that they did this by not freely sharing their knowledge with their customers.

As a result, we emphasized "knowledge transfer" as a big part of our sales proposition. This, we argued, was the "right thing" to do from both a business and an ethical perspective.

Guess what?

Hardly anyone cared.

And those that did wanted no part of it. As one senior manager said: "We don't want you to explain to us what you guys do. Or teach our people how to do it. We just want you to keep our systems running - and fix them when they break. That's what we're paying you for."

Another told us "We're not an IT shop. The last thing we want is to have our people getting distracted from what they should be doing because they're getting involved with the stuff you should be doing." (BTW: I liked the way he said it enough I wrote it down.  mrgreen)

Poof!

There went any illusions our potential clients were actively interested in changing the landscape of the systems support industry like we were.

Something to  think about... smiley

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