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Topics - superboyac [ switch to compact view ]

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Is this really happening?  Are phones going to get divorced from the carriers?  Is our country ready for such freedom being unleashed upon the population?  What will the mindless animal civilians do without the big corporations holding our hands every step of the way??

Living Room / Show me your Man Cave (or Woman Cave)!
« on: November 27, 2012, 05:30 PM »
My favorite rooms in homes are those sanctuaries popularly known as man caves.  If you have a cool one, please post a pic.  I can post one, but my whole place is essentially my man cave.

The best ones I personally know of:
--One dude has a whole basement to himself, no other familiy members allowed.
--My other friend is building an extension to his home specifically for man cave usage.  That's dedication!

Living Room / Anything wrong with formatting a USB stick in NTFS?
« on: November 19, 2012, 12:36 PM »
All USB sticks come formatted as FAT.  But FAT can't store large multi-gigabyte files.  Does anyone see any problems with formatting a disk in NTFS?  I can't come up with a reason not to...

Living Room / Well, I got it: Nokia Lumia 920, Windows 8
« on: November 11, 2012, 01:39 PM »
So if anyone is interested, I'll be posting my thoughts here.  First impressions:
--i like the interface adn touch response better than android and possibly better than ios.  it's crisp like the ios, but probably more confusing.  it's more responsive than android and cleaner.  i know, that's pretty vague.
--it's not as customizable (yet) as i would like.  i like the tiles a lot, but i don't know how to change the tile color (there doesn't seem to be a way other than changing ALL the tiles' colors at once).  Also, i'd like more ability to show what goes into the tiles.  like the gmail app shows the latest email and some of the first words...but there's enough space to show, say, the last 3 emails or more information.  I'd prefer more info showing.  But as usual, design people always want lots of blank space everywhere and as little info as possible.  so i'm hoping someone will come up with a hack or third party tool for this.

--mainly, what i would like is an app to tweak the interface of the device.  the basic functionality is fine so far for me, i don't do that much computing with my phone so it's going to be mainly for email, text, calling, browsing, a little reading...that's it.  and that's all fine (oh plus gps stuff of course).  But I'd really like some ability to change fonts, font size, size of titles...just nitty gritty theme tweaking.  i hope windows will allow for that, that's one of the great trademarks of windows.

Living Room / Any info/reviews of those tiny media players for TVs?
« on: October 28, 2012, 07:51 PM »
We've seen those little media players coming out, usually in China, the last couple of years.  I was wondering if anyone could point me to some reviews (or personal comments) on these things.  Or maybe recommend a model to try.  i want to check one out.  If you can load up a usb stick or sd card with 8-16GB of video files, hook it up thru HDMI or component or VGA to a TV, and it works well, then that's a home run in my book.
Here's one I came across, but other than some specs, i couldn't find any reliable information about it yet:
ZAP Mini 1080 Full HD Media Player
Product Code: UUPMP002100
ZAP Mini 1080 Full HD Media Player is a powerful media player which truly decodes, playback and outputs High Definition 1080p in the market. It allows you to play media files like the MKV, TS, M2TS, TP WMV, VOB, DAT, AVI, MPG, MP4, MOV, RM, RMVB, DIVX, XVID and FLV from the USB flash drive, USB HDD, USB storage device or SD(HC)/MS to HDTV screen. It's compact and light in size. It is a great gadget for you to share your videos and pictures with your family and friends.
Price: US$59.00

A video showing what something like this looks like:

General Software Discussion / Linux Distro features matrix?
« on: October 07, 2012, 04:44 PM »
Everytime I want to dig into Linux, I run into the issue of which distro I want to play around with today.  And to answer that takes a lot of legwork for me.  Is there anything like a features matrix for several of the popular linux distros?  That way, I can look at the different features of each one and figure out which is the one that will be the best for a particular task.

General Software Discussion / ringtones: a history?
« on: October 02, 2012, 09:57 PM »
Do people still buy ringtones?

i was just thinking about how maybe the history of ringtones may be an indicator of how software/os may go in the future.  I'm assuming people don't buy them anymore, so please correct me if I'm wrong.

At one point, ringtones were a very big booming industry.  Then phones got more sophisticated operating systems, and people eventually are now able to put whatever sound they wish on their phone, for free and very easily.  And it was a relatively short industry cycle, so that's why i thought of it.  Maybe all software and OSs will go that way, it just will be a longer cycle.  I still find it mentally difficult to equate software and OS's with physical things you pay for or services people provide.  I'm not saying software shouldn't be compensated, i'm just saying there's something different there.  Just fundamentally speaking, there's something weird about paying for something that can be duplicated exactly without anything decreasing somewhere else.  That's different from a physical product or a service, which is a one time thing.

I can see something like this in a distant future:
If someone wants software, that person pays for it.  But once it's out there, it's out there.  It's free for everyone else.  Not fair you say?  Well, I sort of disagree.  It would be nice to have a system in place where someone who can afford it pays for it, but then it's released into the wild (unless it's classified or something).  So let's say I'm a millionaire...someone working ons ome project who doesn't have much money just has to convince me to pay for it.  It's no big deal for me, so I say fine.  now everyone has it.  It makes good economic sense, it's practical, and avoids the complications with copyright and stuff we are currently experiencing.  Being able to copy something exactly is a totally different game than anything in past times (I think).

Living Room / Judge Lifts Ban on US Sales of Samsung Tablet...funny
« on: October 02, 2012, 10:30 AM »

I found this too funny...
So the Korean-American judge, Lucy Koh lifts the ban preventing Samsung, a Korean company, sales in the US.

I know this is not new, but I just realized that.  Questions:
Korean-American judge...coincidence?
What if she was pro-Apple?  I know if I were a judge in an Armenian vs. US company thing, and ruled against Armenia...I assure you I wouldn't hear the end of it.

and finally...
What if the Koh family sent their people over to the US years ago, pushed their offspring to become successful judges...then secretly coordinated with their family in Korea in cahoots with Samsung all in an attempt to slowly begin their destruction of Apple.  Well done!

Living Room / Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« on: September 27, 2012, 12:31 PM »
I've been struggling with server lingo for several months now.  I've had many discussions with people and nobody seems to be able to clarify much for me.  Maybe I'm thickheaded.  Also, these discussions tend to turn into "Why the hell do you need something like this"...I'm just having a really hard time figuring out what I need.

So essentially, I want a server.  And I want to shove in 20 sata drives in there of varying sizes and makes.  I want to pool them in all sorts of flexible ways.  I don't want RAID because the drives are all different.  I have another thread about the drive pooling softwares I'm considering, specifically to address the hard drive issue.  I really like this Supermicro server:

Now it says it's barebones.  What I really want to know is a list of additional parts I would need to plug this thing in and have it up and running.  So please help me with that.

It sounds to me like the hard drive slots are all there.  It also includes the xeon motherboard.  So is this what additional items I need to get?:
--Xeon CPU

That's all I can see.  Sounds like everything else is already there like the network/ethernet switches and stuff.  And can I put any OS on there as I wish?

Currently, I have desktop computer connected to a standard wifi router and a modem.  All other laptops and tablets connect through the wifi router.  When I put the server in, I'd like the desktop directly connected to it through ethernet.  And everything else wifi.

So as it stands, this is what I need to purchase as separate items:
--supermicro super server
--xeon cpu
--some RAM

that's it?

So, on Friday, I went down to our local hipster area to watch the girls and see what happens at the apple store.  First, there was a ridiculous line that lasted all day and night.  So silly.  It's just a phone ( a good looking one, but still).

I was interested in checking out the new apple map thing they've been talking about.  Let me tell you, I had to ask the staff if this was the new apple app or the old google map one.  That's how similar they are.

Here's the question: if apple can sue (and win) samsung for copying them, can't google sue apple for making billions in a matter of days using an app that's pretty much exactly the same as theirs?

Now, before people start pointing out what is actually different about the apple app and the google app, let me stop you...that's not my point.  i don't care anyway.  The point is, ultimately, when an average joe uses the apple app and then uses a google map app on an android phone, most people will not notice much difference.

rectangles, rounded corners, some point, i feel like we are just being creative for the sake of creativity.  it starts getting lame after a while.

Living Room / Open source cell phone projects.
« on: September 17, 2012, 01:02 PM »
Hi guys, I'd like to perform a thought experiment on what it would take to put together an open source like cell phone.  It doesn't have to be 100% open source, just as much as possible.  Essentially, I'd like to learn about the components it takes to build a cell phone, the kinds of proprietary parts needed (such as the cell network band receivers).  Also, if you know of any cool DIY projects going ont hat I'm not aware of, I'd love to have them pointed out.  Basically, anything along these lines.  Here's what I have so far:

Android is free and can be downloaded here:
Ideally, the cell phone would run stock Android and any updates can occur directly from google.  I don't know if that steps on anyone's toes, but that's the ideal.

I'm pretty sure it's out of my ability and most people's ability to have an open source cell network.  So let's say this was going to be manufactured for real, I'm pretty sure you'd have to use one of the existing carriers.  Maybe end up just being the cell phone hardware provider and not be the carrier.

Here's another open source cell phone software:
I figure Android would be a better choice currently.

MIT's hack DIY cell phone project:

My personal goal: a SMALL Android phone (~3.7" diagonal screen).  High ppi screen, responsive screen.  LTE speeds.  All universal connectors and cables.  replaceable battery.  well-made (rugged plastic or metal).  tight tolerances.  sd card slot.  as few restrictions as possible.

I'll be practicing my film-making skills now.  Here are the first ones:

Los Angeles Refinery Fire

Spider Surprise!

As usual, I cannot for the life of me figure out how to configure foobar's "playlist search" (the window you get by pressing ctrl-f) to add fields to filter for.  Right now, it filters artist, album, and title.  I want to add filename.  I don't know how to do it.  I thought the area in the preferences below would do it, but it doesn't:
Screenshot - 9_15_2012 , 4_45_40 PM.png

I don't know if I should type "filename" or "%filename%" or what.  Of course, foobar's documentation and forums don't explain at all, as if I'm the first person to ask for this.  I've always hated their forums, you can't find shit in there.  i googled around for an hour now, nothing.  I just want to search for filename.  I just need the thing to type in that freaking field.

I have a few folders where files accumulate and I'm afraid to delete them, so I move them to a useless folder.  Now, I hate doing this as it's repetitive and not very productive other than satisfying my paranoia.  You know those programs that have good logging capabilities, and paranoid people like me will change the setting from "keep the last 5 files" to "keep unlimited files".  Stuff like that.

I searched for a while to find folder monitoring programs, there are probably a couple of threads here somewhere.  But I wasn't satisfied with them.  Now I found the perfect solution: just use your favorite file synchronizer program.  Mine is Syncrecovery (previously Super Flexible).  This is how you do it:
--set it up to MOVE files from one folder to another (instead of copying or normal synchronizing)
--set up the filter to ONLY include the stupid files you don't care for (*.log, *.bak, things like that)
--set up the schedule for REAL TIME (Syncrecovery has brilliant options for real time synchronization)

I just set it up and it works flawlessly.  Very nice and elegant solution.  No command line needed, all gui controlled, very powerful, very flexible, and for those of you that are cash strapped, it adds value to a good program that you have already paid money for.

I'd like to just showcase the real-time options in Syncrecovery (great work, Tobias!):
Screenshot - 9_14_2012 , 9_11_24 PM.png
Screenshot - 9_14_2012 , 9_12_19 PM.png
Screenshot - 9_14_2012 , 9_12_50 PM.png

I'm trying to figure out what the coolest conference room setup is I've ever seen.  What kind of chairs, tables?

I've seen a couple of rooms that can electronically change the glass windows from transparent to opaque.  I've seen some pretty fancy light switches.  I'm curious what kinds of chairs are considered the "best" or the most comfortable.  I've seen where they have little monitors embedded inside the table where each person sits.

So today I get blasted by a bunch of articles about that new Lumia 920 and 820 that got leaked to the public.  Most of the articles talk about how investors are not impressed, Nokia's rep is on the line, etc.  All these criticisms.  Now what I don't get is...why?  What are the reasons?  The look?  The stupid rounded edges so that it doesn't infringe iphone coyright?  What??  Give me something!

No reasons.  What does that tell me?  I don't know, it could be many things.  First, maybe this is just a media war between Nokia/Windows and Apple or something along those lines.  Maybe Apple is using their power to make sure there's bad press for all these non-Apple products.  It's very possible.  There's just no reason given.

it could be the phone really isn't that great, but for some reason nobody will say why.  That would be odd, but possible.

Maybe some people know something about the phone other than the useless specs they throw around constantly.  Also possible.

Also, the public, if it truly gets affected by this stuff (and we will!) is stupid for buying into any of these things without any reasons why one is better than the other.  You know some people are going around saying "Yeah! The new Nokia sucks!"  <--Why?  I'm not saying you're wrong!  Just tell me why!  Why, man, why??!!

I'm not defending MS or Nokia.  It's just odd.  Is it the loud, obnoxious colors?  Just say so!  Say something!

I am interested in a file browser specifically for use on large screens and from a distance; like a big screen TV at home, or a video wall in a corporate environment.  Functionally, this is nothing different than a normal file browser.  The only differences are the WAY the content is presented on the screen.  This means:
--LARGE fonts & BIG buttons.  Unlike the way most of us computer geeks, you can't have a lot of writing, little buttons, little menus, 15 things on the menu bar, etc.  It's gotta be very similar to ios/android interfaces in that there are only 3-4 things to do on any given screen.  All the text is a very large percentage of the screen, and the buttons are huge.  For example, with a mouse on my computer monitor, I can easily click on a button that is like a half-inch big.  But on this kind of TV screen, the button would need to be like 6 inches.  These are the kinds of scales I'm talking about.  So it's all about having less content on the screen, but easier reading and navigation.

Now, my primary intention for such a software is to stick on a external hard drive and browse the files when I connect it to a computer that's attached to a tv.  Things like watching videos at other people's homes, and giving presentations at work when a monitor and computer are already present.

XBMC already can do most of this, as it relates to movies.  But XBMC is still not truly portable yet.  And development is slow because XBMC has to do everything itself.  That is, it needs to be a file browser, video player (codecs included), etc. all in XBMC.  And since it is handling file browsing duties, it is very finicky on how the files are named and organized, for it to work optimally with it's interface.  I want to avoid this.  I want my files to be named and organized however the hell I want.  I just need a file browser with big buttons and fonts.

Furthermore, this allows me to use whatever player and software I prefer.  For example, I may be a stubborn person, and I prefer Light Alloy for playing my videos over XBMC because of the way I've set up the mouse options.  So I just need the file browser, not the player.

And this is more complicated than simply increasing the font in the windows display options.  I've already tried that.  It's a stupid way to do it.  Because the fact is that Windows is meant to be used with the screen 12 inches from your face and a mouse in your hand, where you can easily make very precise micro movements.  If you increase the font in the system settings, you'll end up with tiny buttons with HUGE words stuffed into them.  It doesn't work.

I know I should probably put this in the ftp settings thread, but I wanted to use the public forum in case someone had good advice or suggestions...

For the past few years, those of us who use the DC server probably rely on our trusty Filezilla settings to get in.  What I don't understand is why just about all the other ftp clients don't seem to work.  I really would like to get the logins to work with DOpus (which I paid extra to get the secure ftp features) and cuteftp, which is supposed to be an enterprise level ftp client.  Now, ever since the explicit-tls move a few years back, just about all these clients and probably others have a difficult to impossible time connecting to the DC server.  Can we try to fix this or nail what the issue actually is?  We've privately gone around and around on this before, but no answer seems to come up.  I also don't want to bother mouser and gothic with it until we figure out where the issue is arising, as they are already very busy.

So the question is: what is filezilla doing that the other clients can't do?  And if it is clicking a setting or two, which of the settings is it?  I'll personally be specifically interested in DOpus and Cuteftp.

[edit] just fyi, I used to use the server a lot and stopped the last 3 years preciesly because of this issue.  I went from transferring files back and forth easily to spending most of my time trying to figure out why it doesn't work, and I essentially gave up.  Also, it stopped working at work.  So what happened is that I could only try to use it for a couple of hours in the evening when I was NOT at work and had all my clients and settings to play around with freely.  As a result, I stopped updating my dc website.

Living Room / modular, borderless monitors suggestions please?
« on: August 30, 2012, 12:21 PM »
Let's say I were to build a wall of monitors using those modular monitors you see in fancy places like NASA.  Can people suggest to me the absolute best monitors for something like this?  Money is not an object.

Ideally, it should be borderless monitors so when they are placed in a grid formation, the lines in between the physical monitors are as invisible as possible.

I need some good brands and models.  I am also interested in any type of large touchscreen technology as well.  For now, I am assuming that Microsoft Pixelsense is the best thing out there.

I get a "Boot Disk Failure, Insert system disk" error when I replaced one of the hard drives in my pc, windows 7 (NOT the os drive).  I haven't found a solution for it yet.  I booted from the windows 7 install disc and did a repair, but it doesn't do anything.  I picked the "fix startup" options in the repair console.

I have 3 drives in the computer.  I replaced one with a larger size and that's when this happened.  And I think this has happened before.  when you take a drive out of a windows computer, it causes these boot up problems.  I plugged the old drive back in, but it won't work.  I've probably tweaked the MBR too much with all the repair tools at this point.  Shoot!  every time...

what is the proper way to go about replacing a drive??  and how do i get around this without doing a full reinstall?  and i thought I can do a repair reinstall, but windows 7 boot disc doesn't seem to have that.  It only has this repair console where you can fix a few things, but there's way to just reinstall everything over the existing installation to fix missing files.

Living Room / Piano gigging pc: help me build
« on: August 21, 2012, 12:48 PM »
Ok folks,
Seems like my most immediate next project is to build a pc to gig with.  I'm now playing in two bands and I want a rock solid portable setup to take with me and play the keyboard through VST software on the PC.  The reason why I am doing this and not using the onboard sounds of my keyboard (which is a good keyboard) is because these VST software sound so much better.  It has to be.  They have the entire hardware aresenal of a desktop pc versus whatever lame specs are on the keyboard.  I just got a new Roland RD-700NX, which is the top of the line keyboard and they've supposedly improved the sounds drastically.  It's good, no doubt.  but I also have TruePianos, which is a software VST and it's simply incredible.  I can't go back.  So to make this all work, I need a beefy machine that will be as portable as possible.

So I want to get a very good soundcard, probably an RME.  And I'm going to stuff the pc with max RAM and as high a CPU as reasonable.  GPU is not a big deal.  Solid state hard drive is probably a must.  I'm going to run Windows.  I need as small a case as possible.  I will also consider rack cases if they are small since the audio hardware I'll be using will most likely be intended for rack mounting.  I'd like it to be light, if possible, maybe carry with one hand.  One trick is going to be to figure out what type of monitor I'll be using, it needs to be either super small or something unconventional, like a foldout monitor that can be tucked into a rack space on sliders, or something.  I don't necessarily want to go that fancy as I know those kinds of things are very expensive.  I'm not afraid of really unconventional setups.

I'm also aware that things like V-Machine exist, which is essentially what I'm building.  But the difference is the power of what I'm building will be way more, I'm talking full desktop power, not mobile ARM power.  So please, no hammering me about how expensive or overkill this stuff is, unless you see me making misinformed decisions.

Another interesting feature of this setup will be the bootup scenario.  As a live gigging instrument, I'd like it to be where I turn the computer on and it boots right into the vst host software.  This probably means just tweaking the startup behavior.  I'm just nervous about things that can go wrong during a live gig.

This is the first time I've ever wanted a phone.  This is the phone I want, the Sony Xperia SX:

It came out last week.  Why do I want it?  It's the only LTE, up-to-date Android phone that is relatively small.  Every other phone is trying to get bigger and bigger screens.  I thought the Blackberry Pearl was the perfect size for a phone and I've been waiting for one to come out.  I can't believe so few people want a smaller phone.  I hate all the 4.whatever screens, they're too big for something to have in your pocket all the time.

Problem is this phone will not be sold in the US.  So it'll cost me $600-700 to get it.  Which is really not worth it, I know that.  But man, it's the perfect size.

Living Room / waiting list at library...for an e-book?
« on: August 16, 2012, 09:02 AM »
An e-book is digital.
A public library offers books for free to users.
Why is there a waiting list?  If 10 people want the e-book and the library has it, all ten can get it!  No need for restrictions, it's digital!
Since the library can lend out only one copy of an e-book at a time, it would be cost-prohibitive to order multiple copies, Witwer said. That’s why many who go online to borrow an e-book discover there’s a waiting list.

“It’s not the same as with physical books,” she said.

Not to turn it into a debate, it's just silly sounding.  It's like, because before we had the physical limitation that restricted the number of users, for some reason that limitation is actually a desirable feature that needs to be retained throughout all time?  Why don't we use a telegraph while we're at it?  This is stupid, stupid stuff people.  What do I expect...same ol story.

Living Room / Getting a video capture card: any comments?
« on: August 06, 2012, 12:09 PM »
I want to get a video capture card to transfer all sorts of stuff to my computer.  For example, all the old VHS family recordings we have, i'd like to convert to digital.  Also would like to connect video feeds from my camcorder into it direct (live stream).  Etc.  I don't want a usb connection because usb sucks.  For video stuff, I want maximum no-throttle speed, which means a pcie device connected to the motherboard.

So I'm looking for a pcie video capture card.  I have no idea what to look for.  Something like this I'm guessing:

If anyone has suggestions please let me know.  Also, if there are things I should be concerned about please let me know also.  Am I going to have issues adding a video capture card to my system?  I don't know, anything like that.  Thanks.

Living Room / Olympic coverage this year SUCKS!
« on: August 05, 2012, 05:03 PM »
What are the games about?  The competition.  How do we experience this?  With video.  Is there any video available?  Not much, maybe like 10%.  What's one of the most anticipated events?  Usain Bolt's 100m.  Did they show it live?  No.  What the hell??

Do highlights show up on in a reasonable amount of time (less than a day)?  Nope.  Is it because they don't have the technology or employees, or money?  hardly.  Have corporations sucked the fun out of everything?  Seems like it.  Are politicians concerned?  Not really.

Olympics suck.  We can't see shit, it's too hard to find what we want to see.  This is stupid.  I'm done.  Enjoy your Olympics.  I don't need to turn watching the Olympics into a volunteer job of detective work.

Let me ask you this: Of the events that you are aware of (you know who won, interesting things that happened) you know this because you SAW it live?  Or on video at least?  Or from reading articles?  Yeah, that's what I thought.  And I don't mean 15 second highlights, that's basically seeing the last half lap and someone celebrating.  i wouldn't call that an experience.

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