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Endless Runway Circular Airport

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Traditional airports are are the mercy of wind directions and speeds when it comes to takeoffs and landings. This limits their capacity and can also cause delays. The Endless Runway...

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peelman
9 hours ago
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Egad. No thanks.
Seymour, Indiana
MotherHydra
1 day ago
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Aside from the fact that I'd dub this the NewsBlur airport, I can't see pilots going for this- the constant right turn. Not to mention it would wear the hardware differently thus requiring a change in maintenance procedures. Weird.
Space City, USA
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The High Cost of On Premises Infrastructure

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IT Infrastructure is a challenge for any company and especially companies that are not large enough to implement their own, full scale datacenters.  Like many things in IT, major challenges come in the form of lacking specific, seldom used expertise as well as lacking the scale to utilize singular resources effectively. This lack of scale … Continue reading The High Cost of On Premises Infrastructure
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peelman
3 days ago
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After over a year at a collocation facility as a jack-of-all-trades systems guy, I can say with certainty that I did not possess before that there is nothing easy, or cheap, when it comes to building even just a passable data center. Every aspect has layers of complexity that make small but important details easy to lose or forget.
Seymour, Indiana
fxer
4 days ago
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I'd still lean cloud for the kind of small businesses this article is speaking to. For ex MySQL replication and backups are all automated in the cloud, but a pain in the ass to build and maintain on your own servers without knowledgeable staff
Bend, Oregon
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The Cult of DD

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You’ll often see instructions for creating and using disk images on Unix systems making use of the dd command. This is a strange program of obscure provenance that somehow, still manages to survive in the 21st century.

Actually, using dd is almost never necessary, and due to its highly nonstandard syntax is usually just an easy way to mess things up. For instance, you’ll see instructions like this asking you to run commands like:

# Obscure dd version
dd if=image.iso of=/dev/sdb bs=4M

Guess what? This is exactly equivalent to a regular shell pipeline using cat and shell redirection:

# Equivalent cat version
cat image.iso >/dev/sdb

That weird bs=4M argument in the dd version isn’t actually doing anything special—all it’s doing is instructing the dd command to use a 4 MB buffer size while copying. But who cares? Why not just let the command figure out the right buffer size automatically?

Another reason to prefer the cat variant is that it lets you actually string together a normal shell pipeline. For instance, if you want progress information with cat you can combine it with the pv command:

# Cat version with progress meter
cat image.iso | pv >/dev/sdb

There’s an obscure option to GNU dd to get it to display a progress meter as well. But why bother memorizing that? If you learn the pv trick once, you can use it with any program.

If you want to create a file of a certain size, you can do so using other standard programs like head. For instance, here are two ways to create a 100 MB file containing all zeroes:

# Obscure dd version
dd if=/dev/zero of=image.iso bs=4MB count=25

# Regular head version
head -c 100MB /dev/zero >image.iso

The head command is useful for lots of things, not just creating disk images. Therefore it’s a better investment of your time to learn head than it is to learn dd. In fact, you probably already know how to use it.

I will confess: there are some interesting options that dd has, which aren’t easily replicated with cat or head. For instance, you can use dd to convert a file between ASCII and EBCDIC encodings. So if you find yourself doing that a lot, I won’t blame you for reaching for dd. But otherwise, try to stick to more standard Unix tools.


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peelman
3 days ago
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Seymour, Indiana
fxer
4 days ago
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Bend, Oregon
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Open source license descriptions and metadata

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Back in September we added open source licenses to repository overview pages. Now, when you view a repository's license, we'll tell you a bit more about it.

Screenshot of atom/atom's license overview

If a project is licensed under a popular open source license like MIT, Apache, or GPL, you'll see a brief description of the license, along with an overview of what you can and can't do with the project.

Interested in incorporating the license metadata in your own project? The license descriptions and metadata are themselves open source, pulled from choosealicense.com and made available via the license API.

We hope the additional license metadata helps you make informed choices, but please keep in mind that we’re not lawyers (at least most of us aren't). If you have any questions regarding the right license for your code or any other legal issues relating to it, of course, it’s always best to consult with a professional.

Happy open source licensing!

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peelman
6 days ago
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Handy...
Seymour, Indiana
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Dell Precision 5520

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Daniel Rubino (via Steve Lubitz):

The Precision 5520 was supplied by Dell for this review. It features a 4K IGZO display, 32GB of RAM, Intel Xeon processor, NVIDIA Quadro graphics and 512GB of Class 50 solid-state drive (SSD).

The starting price for the Precision 5520 is $1,399. The unit we evaluated in this review retails for $2,867.

It also has room for a second hard drive or SSD, real function keys, a T arrow key arrangement, and a trackpad that clicks. It is about the same weight as the 2012 Retina MacBook Pro and gets the same battery life (7 hours).

The most similar Mac is a $3,099 MacBook Pro with a lower resolution display, 16 GB of RAM (max), a 2.9 GHz i7, and a Radeon Pro 460.

Previously: The Curious State of Apple Product Pricing, New MacBook Pros and the State of the Mac.

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peelman
6 days ago
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Remember those days when we used to laugh about shitty Dell laptops and stare the latest Apple hardware with a little drool leaking from our mouth?
Seymour, Indiana
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Federal Court Rules Three Texas Congressional Districts Illegally Drawn : The Two-Way : NPR

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A federal panel ruled Friday that three of Texas's Congressional districts, including the 35th, shown here, were illegally drawn by the state's Republicans. Screengrab by NPR/Google Maps hide caption

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Screengrab by NPR/Google Maps

A federal panel ruled Friday that three of Texas's Congressional districts, including the 35th, shown here, were illegally drawn by the state's Republicans.

Screengrab by NPR/Google Maps

A panel of federal judges ruled on Friday that three of Texas' congressional districts are illegal, violating the Constitution and the Voting Rights Act. The panel found that Republicans had used race as a motivating factor in redistricting.

Judges Xavier Rodriguez and Orlando Garcia wrote the court's decision, which comes after a protracted and complex legal battle that began when the new districts were drawn in 2011, following the last census.

"The political motive does not excuse or negate that use of race; rather, the use of race is ultimately problematic for precisely that reason — because of their political motive, they intentionally drew a district based on race in a location where such use of race was not justified by a compelling state interest," says the ruling.

Politically motivated redistricting is legal, but redistricting with an intent to reduce the influence of minority voters — either by "packing" those voters into a district, or "cracking" them among multiple districts — is not.

Supreme Court Strikes Down Key Provision Of Voting Rights Law
Could Texas' Redistricting Leave Latinos Behind?

In 2013, the Supreme Court struck down a key provision of the Voting Rights Act, which cleared the way for Texas to activate its controversial voter ID law and implement its redistricting maps without getting federal approval first. That's when a number of groups brought challenges to Texas Republicans' redistricting plans.

Texas will now consider whether to appeal the federal court's decision to the Supreme Court.

If the decision holds, the three congressional districts will likely need to be redrawn, causing a ripple effect on the state's other districts.

The decision could have far-reaching consequences for Texas politics and elections. Nina Perales is vice president of litigation for MALDEF, the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, which was counsel for Latino challengers to the redistricting plan.

Perales explains that not only does the court's decision lay the groundwork for changes to the state's current redistricting plan, but it may also be a step toward Texas being ordered back under federal supervision of its elections, as a remedy for intentional discrimination in its redistricting plan.

This federal court's decision "hopefully will allow the court to put Texas back under federal supervision because it's clear now after the warnings in Texas voter I.D. and Texas redistricting that Texas needs to be under federal supervision for its voting changes," says Perales.

Two of the three districts found to be illegal are held by Republicans; the third, Texas's 35th district, is held by Democrat Lloyd Doggett. As the Austin American-Statesman explains, the panel said that District 35:

"was improperly drawn with race as the predominant factor to minimize the number of Democrat districts and to attempt to unseat Doggett by boosting the Hispanic population, making it more likely that voters would choose a Latino candidate... By drawing Doggett's district with a majority Hispanic population extending into San Antonio, the Republican-controlled Legislature was able to "create the facade of complying" with the Voting Rights Act while eliminating an existing Democratic district, the panel ruled."

Judge Jerry Smith wrote a sharp dissent, with harsh words for the Justice Department. "The DoJ wholly failed, but not for lack of trying. There was, and is, no smoking gun in this record, nor has the United States shown that the State hid or failed to disclose one," he wrote.

"It was obvious, from the start, that the DoJ attorneys viewed state officials and the legislative majority and their staffs as a bunch of backwoods hayseed bigots who bemoan the abolition of the poll tax and pine for the days of literacy tests and lynchings," Smith added. "And the DoJ lawyers saw themselves as an expeditionary landing party arriving here, just in time, to rescue the state from oppression, obviously presuming that plaintiffs' counsel were not up to the task. The Department of Justice moreover views Texas redistricting litigation as the potential grand prize and lusts for the day when it can reimpose preclearance."

Whether or not Texas appeals to the Supreme Court, time is already running short. For candidates planning on running in 2018, deadlines to file for the Texas primaries aren't far away.

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peelman
7 days ago
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This is another one of those things where I doubt the ability of a Republic to maintain long term. Voting district changes should be done via referendum. If you put this shit on a ballot, with Maps depicting the districts, where the actual gerrymandering could be displayed to the mass populace, a lot more people would be aware of how fucked up the politics in this country are becoming.
Seymour, Indiana
fxer
9 days ago
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Judge Jerry sounds a little sensitive
Bend, Oregon
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acdha
9 days ago
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That map!
Washington, DC
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