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BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

That's when you enter your password. I use the fingerprint scanner on my phone to unlock it but I can also enter a PIN.

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BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Storage medium aside, isn't a dedicated rackmount appliance just for mixing in sound effects an obsolete technology?

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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I'm 28 and I don't think I'll ever escape Scantron cards. I'm in university right now and there's always one or two teachers every semester who insist on using it, even if it's only a small portion of the test. On my statistics final, for instance, there were 10 multiple choice questions worth less than 10% of the exam that were answered on a scantron card.

I've only had a couple of courses out of 24 where a midterm or final had a significant amount of multiple choice. One of them (Impact of Science and Technology on Society, where most of the final grade was actually locked away in a research paper) had all-multiple choice testing but that we answered them on our laptops in class using a special secure web browser. The others used Scantron cards.

And I don't mean knockoffs or generic brand bubble sheets, I mean honest-to-God Scantron branded cards.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Boiled Water posted:


It doesn't have to be. The Danish IC3 series has been in service for 15 years and going strong. Made by Bombardier Transportation in the late 80's and introduced in 1991 and still going strong. Together with the S-trains they form the backbone of Danish rail transportation. The best bit though is that they are made for comfort as seen in the interior:


Bombardier is very good at making trains. On the other hand, "design by committee" as seen in all those British trains isn't a very good model to follow. Too many managers and decisionmakers and bean counters, not enough engineers I guess. That's the only way I can figure out why someone would think strapping a bus to a train's motive system would be a good idea.

BattleMaster has a new favorite as of 18:52 on Jul 4, 2013

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Phanatic posted:

The point is that it's just hanging off your keychain, you just wave it in front of the pump and it's tied to your card. You don't need to go into your purse or pants, grab your wallet, extract your card, swipe it, take the card out, curse, turn it around, swipe it the correct way, maybe punch in your zip code, and put your card away. Yes, all that's a decidedly first-world problem, but convenience sells.

I use the PayPass chip in my credit card to pay for my groceries. Or anywhere else that takes it. I'm a germophobe and I hate touching the PIN pad. It's also a lot faster.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Pham Nuwen posted:

I was just pointing out that the radiation from cell phones and wifi is incredibly harmless compared to actual ionizing radiation. All the cell phone will do is potentially warm your body very very slightly when in use.

I'm a nuclear engineering student and I've taken three courses on radiation and dosimetry. We don't even cover radio, microwave, and other non-ionizing radiation because they pose no danger and studying them is completely pointless from a protection and dosimetry point of view.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Humphreys posted:

This is the #1 best way. Long arms are handy.

Edit for content:

This video is kinda cute as the kids are unaware, but also a bad example of how entitled some feel.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uk_vV-JRZ6E

How did that 8 year old girl know what it was, and by its proper name too

Stuff like this doesn't make me feel old, it makes me feel glad that I live in a time and place where I don't have to deal with poo poo like Walkmans (Walkmen?) anymore.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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So what is it if not an execution device?

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Binary Badger posted:

When I saw their equipment my jaw hit the floor, the situation was straight out of a Community episode. They had found a bunch of unopened boxes in their basement and it turned out to be all never-used 20th century computer equipment. It was a bunch of Packard-Bell Apple ][s, with some Imagewriter printers, paper, and a handful of programs like Stickybear Bounce, PFS: File, AppleWriter //, Math Blaster, The Print Shop, Reader Rabbit, and a fistful of Sunburst programs like Incredible Machine, and of course the old standard Oregon Trail.

And you just opened it to use it? It belongs in a museum!!!

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

I personally prefer all-glass phones an tablets but I don't use it for work correspondence or something where my typing is more intense than some text messages. I think my opinion would be different if I had to type on it extensively.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

Uranium is an alpha emitter; a bunch of things below it on the decay chain are beta minus emitters and many forms of alpha/beta decay are followed up by gamma emission due to the daughter particle being left in an excited state; for instance Cobalt-60 is a beta minus emitter but it is manufactured specifically for the fact that it emits two gamma rays immediately after decay, making it good for situations where you need gamma rays like radiation therapy.

Oddly enough I just finalized a design for a tiny and cheap Geiger counter and throughout development I used shards of old Fiestaware to test it out.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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DrBouvenstein posted:

They can't penetrate the body, no, but if they get in through other means, like, say...injestion...they can be dangerous.

But I'm sure there's no need to worry about ingesting alpha particles from things you put your food on, right?

That being said, my mom has a metric poo poo-ton of Fiesta-ware. I'm 90% sure it's all from after my parents were married (possibly gotten as wedding gifts?) so sometimes in the 70's before they halted production in those years.

Is it only the red color that has uranium in it? For some reason, I thought I remember hearing that the yellow color was slightly radioactive as well from my high school chemistry class.

Eating alpha particles isn't the issue; if it's emitted and caught in your food it's just helium at that point. The vast majority of helium on Earth is from alpha decay from uranium and thorium.

It's if something happens to turn the glaze into a powder and then you eat that and the alpha particles are emitted right into your internal organs is when it becomes an issue. Also the fact that uranium itself and a bunch of things on the U-238 decay chain (radioactive isotopes of lead, mercury, thorium) are heavy metals and you don't really want those in your body either.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!


It can't be a radioactive element if it has any stable isotopes. I'm not being pedantic here; words have meanings. Without knowing the isotope mixture of a given sample of cadmium, you can't say if it's radioactive or not.

But I'm a nuclear engineering student; that article is for chemical engineers and they may have much less stringent definitions for the "radioactive" label.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

I decided to go ahead and look up some numbers.

Natural potassium is composed of 0.012% potassium-40, a radioisotope with a half-life of 1.248 billion years. In spite of this tiny amount, this relatively short (on a cosmological scale) half-life gives natural potassium a specific activity of 31.72 Bq/g.

Natural cadmium contains 12% cadmium-113, as mentioned in that article. It is also a radioisotope but has a much longer half-life of 7.7*1015 years. I tried to look up natural cadmium's specific activity and couldn't find it; it was so vanishingly small that no one cared enough to list in anywhere.

So I ran the numbers myself and came up with 0.00186 Bq/g specific activity in natural cadmium.

Are you still going to call cadmium radioactive as a rule? Do you consider bananas to be radioactive too?

Keiya posted:

Wait, it decays before it's formed? That's a major breakthrough!

Huh?

7.7*1015 / 1.0*106 is 7.7*109 which is still longer than U-238's half life of 4.5*109.

BattleMaster has a new favorite as of 07:47 on Jul 30, 2014

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Digiwizzard posted:

No, because only a partial amount of the element decays like you said. Not sure why you're getting up in arms about this.

Because someone was wrong ON THE INTERNET.

Edit: Also it took longer for me to write my post than it did for you to reply to anything so I probably came off as more snarky than the situation warranted

BattleMaster has a new favorite as of 07:50 on Jul 30, 2014

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

Jerry Cotton posted:

I'm fairly certain you can't contract paedophilia just by touching a bible, you also have to be ordained or whatever it's called. So it's probably safe to carry it to the nearest waste disposal site.

Call your municipality's information line for disposal instructions.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

The stickers and laptops and the tech slogans on VCRs/etc. serve the same purpose, to help sell the product to you when you're browsing display models.

The difference is that laptops are still put on display in shops while DVD players and such are cheap and homogeneous enough now that you just grab the box for the cheapest one when you need a new one.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Magnus Praeda posted:

I just quit RadioShack in November and I'm pretty sure I was having that argument the week I left. Other perpetual favorites included "no, USB A-A cables don't work like you think they do" and "no, you need an ethernet switch, not a that splitter, yes I realize it's $10 cheaper, no it will not work, fine buy it anyway our return period is 30 days."

I hated retail.

Does anyone even sell USB A-A cables outside of online sellers who will make any cable you ask for even if it doesn't make sense?

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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m2pt5 posted:

I don't know about selling them, but I once had an extremely cheap digital camera that used a USB A-A cable to transfer its pictures to the computer. (It was one of those tiny cheap ones that only has its own internal memory, needs a crappy program to download the pictures, takes the pictures in like 640x480, and runs on two AAAs.)

What the... what was wrong with just using a USB A-B cable like everyone else?

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

Standard size B connectors have always been in the USB spec because by definition the female A is the host and female B is the device. I don't know if mini/micro Bs have always been in the spec or if they were added later though.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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GWBBQ posted:

I use these at work in classrooms and I'm thankful that Monoprice sells A-A cables because gently caress paying $30 for a 6 foot cable.

I don't understand, is there just a cartel of people who have gotten together just to break one of the most basic parts of the USB spec?

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!


It has electronics though, it's not just a crossover like a null modem cable or something. Connecting a straight-up A-A cable between two hosts has the potential for bad consequences for one of their power supplies since a small voltage difference on the 5V rail can cause a lot of current to flow.

That's why it's pretty irresponsible for people to use A-A cables in specific applications that are blatantly against the spec.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

mystes posted:

It's not that crazy that people think this. In the case of Firewire, for example, you can actually network two computers with a normal cable. USB just happens to be way more stupidly complicated, to the point where they had to go through the trouble to invent USB OTG later so devices can act as both hosts and guests, and it's still such a pain in the rear end that nobody actually does it.

This reminds me of the whole stupid thing where when USB 2 came out they renamed USB 1 to "USB 2 Full Speed" in contrast to "USB 2 High Speed" which was actually USB 2.

USB OTG features a lot in printers that can print directly from USB mass storage (in addition to connecting to a computer as normal) as well as on Android 4 phones.I don't think there's a desktop that has it, though, but such a thing is almost pointless except for machine to machine file transfers or something. Those A-A cables wouldn't work for that, though, because OTG uses the fifth pin that USB B Mini and Micro connectors have for determining who gets to be the host.

Also the "Full Speed" versus "High Speed" isn't as dumb as it sounds because there's also a "Low Speed" that only supports HID (so mice and keyboards, mostly) out of all of the standard USB classes.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

DrBouvenstein posted:

(Bolding mine.)

That part has led to a MASSIVE security flaw.

Since all something has to do to be "seen" as a mouse and/or keyboard is to simply tell the OS it's a mouse and/or keyboard, a malicious USB device can be plugged in, and almost instantly take control of the cursor and keyboard input, and start doing poo poo like modifying the host file so common sites like Google and Facebook go to spoofing sites, disable software firewalls, etc...

USB can do that, so can an older PS2 keyboard-like device... and Firewire gives devices direct memory access so a malicious device can do much worse than simply entering false keystrokes.

The point to take away from this is not that USB or Firewire is bad but that there isn't much you can do if someone has physical access to your machine.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Fo3 posted:

Joining the laser printer crew. Got a decent brother printer, toner costs $70 but lasts about 3 years, and that's with me printing a ton of letters and invoices in the past, plus a heap of recipes, and my partner printing out a lot of study notes, assignments and general stuff.

Yeah using ink to print text/black and white is obsolete and failed technology. Get a laser printer and never look back.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

DrBouvenstein posted:

I'm guessing that despite looking like everything in 3D Dot Game Heroes looking like voxels, they're actually not?

Since when does that game look like it has voxels? This is what voxels look like


Delta Force 2, released in 1999

The game you mentioned is just a cruddy-looking Minecraft-alike with huge polygonal cubes mapped with textures. Voxels are conceptually and mathematically a lot different than simply building your world out of cubes as has been the fad for the last half-decade among low-effort games.

BattleMaster has a new favorite as of 21:33 on Feb 24, 2015

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

mobby_6kl posted:

Adobe's download estimates:



Realtalk what is this garbage-rear end DSL that's a quarter the speed of a T1? I just ran a speedtest.net on mine and I'm getting 11.66 Mb per second which is like 6 or 7 times as fast as a T1.

Edit: I mean I know the turtleass DSL is part of it being obsolete but I flat-out can't remember a time when DSL was that slow

BattleMaster has a new favorite as of 08:16 on Mar 17, 2015

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Antifreeze Head posted:

Lots of stuff that isn't for the consumer market looks like rear end. Here's a website that provides radio broadcast technology to large portions of Canada: http://www.oakwoodbroadcast.com/specials.asp

That doesn't look like rear end, that looks like something with lots of easy to find information

Speaking of technology that I want to be obsolete as soon as possible, those new-style websites that are highly vertical and have a few lines of huge-size text or a large picture every page that make you do a ton of scrolling while still barely having any content.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Code Jockey posted:

I wish we still had these. I miss them.

At least they don't rootkit the gently caress out of your PC, though whoops if you lose it I suppose!

Does that still happen? I thought (hoped) that Starforce and its ilk were obsolete and failed technology.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

KozmoNaut posted:

A lot of places, "nuclear bomb" is the most commonly used term, which I think is more descriptive.

"Atomic" as a word to describe nuclear processes is highly anachronistic and wasn't correct even when it was commonly used (in the 40s and 50s.)

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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They make machines for cops that come with briefcases of cables like that, for slurping data off of confiscated cell phones.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

No number of cables can get past full-device encryption though

Edit: Except ones optimized for torture I guess but Western cops who do routine warrantless device imagings aren't going to be applying rubber hoses to anyone

BattleMaster has a new favorite as of 06:02 on Jul 31, 2015

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

My boyfriend acquired a bunch of terminals from his work that they were throwing out, and gave them to me. I have one of them hooked up on a workbench with a Linux machine on one port and with the other free for connecting to embedded projects. The Linux machine is set up that way just because it's fun, but for embedded projects I'd rather use a real terminal than an emulated one because it's easier than dragging over a laptop and opening up PuTTY.

Weird fact: Linux's ls doesn't work properly on a real terminal if colours are enabled; they'll bleed because they're terminated in a way that works with a terminal emulator but not a real one apparently.

I took apart one of the terminals and it has an Intel 80186 CPU in it, something that probably belongs in this thread in its own right. It's an x86 CPU that has a bunch of support stuff integrated (timers, interrupt controller, DMA controller, address decoding.) It wasn't compatible with the standard versions of these and other chips which limited its adoption in personal computers, but it caught on somewhat for embedded systems where the high level of integration is valued over flexibility.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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flosofl posted:

I'd rather people "trust, but verify" rather than accept any loving thing somebody says. If more people did that, we might have less vaxers and truthers in the world.

The problem isn't blindly trusting, it's rejecting the established thought for no reason and then blindly latching on to the first thing they see some random other person say, which makes no sense at all.

Edit: That doesn't invalidate what you said but I have difficulty getting my head around that. Also, some conspiracy types have caught on to the fact that scientists cite things, so they started citing other wingnuts to make their scrawlings look more valid.

BattleMaster has a new favorite as of 16:35 on Sep 24, 2015

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Exit Strategy posted:

I get the first one, but what's the second referencing?

Don't tell me you forgot

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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ALL-PRO SEXMAN posted:

I don't understand why you'd need a Sodastream or whatever in the first place. Then again I almost never drink soda so maybe I'm just not the target market.

I drink way too much soda and I don't even understand the things. Aside from being too expensive there's no way it can beat the quality of of brand name soda.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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AlphaKretin posted:

Because they can charge more for people who don't have it.

Yeah they're not reducing the cost for those who have guards; they're increasing it for those who don't. Insurance companies are always looking for an excuse to charge more, even if the lack of whatever it is doesn't actually increase the risk in reality.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Buttcoin purse posted:

So X-rays are what the "low radiation" CRTs started emitting less of? Should I use a Geiger counter when using old PC monitors, especially really light ones?

Relax, they had to conform to regulations mandating a maximum exposure rate to users.

BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


Avast!

Flickering isn't the hardware's default behaviour. Normally if there are too many sprites on the same scanline the remainder won't draw, and this is used in a few places as a mask effect - by putting enough invisible sprites on a scanline, you can cause part of another sprite to not draw. The flickering or slowdown and flickering of sprites is implemented on purpose by programmers to allow you to at least see everything when poo poo goes crazy, even if it isn't the ideal solution.

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BattleMaster
Aug 14, 2000


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Keiya posted:

Light guns no longer being practical is the worst thing about moving away from CRTs. The wii sensor bar solution works well enough for most things, but it doesn't handle different TV sizes as elegantly.

Yeah, CRT light guns are about as good as you can get for accuracy. Although, Wii Remote lightgun games that support calibration (i.e. stand at shooting distance, then shoot at one corner, then shoot at the opposite corner) can compensate for different screen sizes well enough.

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