JXM's recent activity

  1. Comment on What are some good movies that aren't written from a dominant perspective? (i.e. white/cis/het/male/non-disabled) in ~movies

    JXM
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    I highly recommend Bound and Sense8 by the Wachowski Sisters (they made The Matrix).

    I highly recommend Bound and Sense8 by the Wachowski Sisters (they made The Matrix).

    2 votes
  2. Comment on What's the last piece of technology that truly impressed you? in ~tech

    JXM
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    I don’t think it does it automatically. You have to supply it with subtitles yourself.

    I don’t think it does it automatically. You have to supply it with subtitles yourself.

    1 vote
  3. Comment on What's the last piece of technology that truly impressed you? in ~tech

    JXM
    Link Parent
    Not even 480p...DVDs are 480i for NTSC and 576i for PAL. That’s why you need to deinterlace them. Rips from the internet today are often copies from streaming sites, not discs. That’s why you’ll...

    Not even 480p...DVDs are 480i for NTSC and 576i for PAL. That’s why you need to deinterlace them.

    Rips from the internet today are often copies from streaming sites, not discs. That’s why you’ll see “WEBRIP” at the end of files.

    And yes, bitrate is the biggest factor in how a video will look. A 4K video with an extremely low bitrate will look worse than a high bitrate 1080p, or even 720p, video.

    A properly decombed/deinterlaced DVD rip can look extremely good.

    2 votes
  4. Comment on Employee monitoring software surges as companies send staff home in ~tech

    JXM
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    I don’t understand why you’d hire someone if you don’t trust them enough to do their job from home without down to the keystroke monitoring...

    I don’t understand why you’d hire someone if you don’t trust them enough to do their job from home without down to the keystroke monitoring...

    19 votes
  5. Comment on What's the last piece of technology that truly impressed you? in ~tech

    JXM
    Link Parent
    About half of my collection (480 of 927 films in my library) were copied from DVDs, so they are in either 480p for NTSC or 576p for PAL discs. My current library is about 3.7 terabytes and runs...

    About half of my collection (480 of 927 films in my library) were copied from DVDs, so they are in either 480p for NTSC or 576p for PAL discs. My current library is about 3.7 terabytes and runs from a MyCloud PR2100 NAS since that was the only one that supported hardware transcoding when I bought it.

    For the actual copying process, I did most of it in my spare time at work. I do video editing for a living, so my work computer at the time was pretty powerful. It could encode an SD movie in about 20 minutes. Whenever I was working on something at my desk, I'd just constantly swap disks out and go through maybe 10 per day as time allowed. Television shows took forever, since they have multiple episodes per disc and you need to be more careful when ripping those to make sure the episodes are labeled right.

    I just used a Handbrake preset I created to transcode them into MKV files. Basically, it grabbed the highest quality audio (7.1, 5.1 or stereo and converted it to ACC at a high bitrate) and any English or forced subtitle files. I used an RF of 18 to make sure they looked as good as possible. I also used the decomb setting to deinterlace the videos since all DVDs are interlaced. The bitrate was variable but roughly correlated to the RF number.

    After that, you just need to make sure they're named the way Plex wants them named - TITLE (YEAR).

    The hardest part was all of the outliers. That's what took so long. Disney discs never want to play nice so copying them can be difficult. And foreign films are a little harder since I always wanted to get the original language audio, English language audio and then proper subtitles. And movies that span multiple discs (like 1900, Titanic or Once Upon a Time in America) have to be stitched together into one piece. And the discs that had multiple versions of a film that were interleaved together. The list of weird edge cases goes on forever.

    All told, it took about a year to get every one of my discs digitized. Once I backed them up, I kept a few dozen that were sentimental, valuable/out of print or collector's editions and donated the rest to a local thrift store. That was about five years ago and the rest of the movies I've added were either ones I got from Netflix, Redbox or borrowed from friends and copied to my computer so I'd have a copy of them.

    My process now is to use MakeMKV to rip the contents of a disc to my computer and then run it through one of Don Melton's video transcoding scripts. His scripts produce really good quality at (relatively) small file sizes.

    I'm happy to answer any specific questions.

    6 votes
  6. Comment on What's the last piece of technology that truly impressed you? in ~tech

    JXM
    Link Parent
    I discovered it when I was digitizing my old DVD collection. I ended up putting them into Plex. I’ve got around 1,000 movies and 50 TV shows that I copied over the course of almost a year. You...

    I discovered it when I was digitizing my old DVD collection. I ended up putting them into Plex. I’ve got around 1,000 movies and 50 TV shows that I copied over the course of almost a year. You just throw them in a folder and It finds all the metadata and suddenly your movies are accessible anywhere in the world. Magic!

    4 votes
  7. Comment on What's the last piece of technology that truly impressed you? in ~tech

    JXM
    Link Parent
    I remember that around 2008 my college had a stack of Windows CE clamshells in the closet. I spent a day finding the right charger and a other playing around it them. For early 2000s tech, they...

    I remember that around 2008 my college had a stack of Windows CE clamshells in the closet. I spent a day finding the right charger and a other playing around it them. For early 2000s tech, they were pretty cool!

    1 vote
  8. Comment on What's the last piece of technology that truly impressed you? in ~tech

    JXM
    Link Parent
    I got an SSD pretty early on and I remember paying like $300 for a 128 GB drive and being blown away with how fast it was (and it's probably super slow by modern standards). I remember the very...

    I got an SSD pretty early on and I remember paying like $300 for a 128 GB drive and being blown away with how fast it was (and it's probably super slow by modern standards).

    I remember the very first MacBook Air had a 64 GB SSD option that cost $999 more than the regular hard drive model.

    7 votes
  9. What's the last piece of technology that truly impressed you?

    I recently got the Galaxy Fold and I am genuinely fascinated by it. A folding screen phone is just wild to me. It's a crazy concept and every time I pick up the Fold, I feel like I'm touching the...

    I recently got the Galaxy Fold and I am genuinely fascinated by it. A folding screen phone is just wild to me. It's a crazy concept and every time I pick up the Fold, I feel like I'm touching the future.

    It got me thinking about how technology is so ubiquitous nowadays that we take so much for granted. The fact that we have high speed Internet access from anywhere on earth was totally unthinkable 20 years ago, yet today it is a reality.

    So when is the last time you were truly impressed by a technology or technological breakthrough?

    32 votes
  10. Comment on Apple releases two new Pride Edition Sport Bands for Apple Watch in ~lgbt

    JXM
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    I think they both look great, but I can't bring myself to pay $50 for a piece of rubber (even if it's fancy rubber).

    I think they both look great, but I can't bring myself to pay $50 for a piece of rubber (even if it's fancy rubber).

    1 vote
  11. Comment on Apple Store's temperature checks may violate EU privacy rules, says German data protection office in ~tech

    JXM
    Link Parent
    I don’t disagree with making sure the rules are followed, but rather with the fact that they’re saying it’s not okay to check temperatures at all. At least that’s how I’m reading the article.

    I don’t disagree with making sure the rules are followed, but rather with the fact that they’re saying it’s not okay to check temperatures at all. At least that’s how I’m reading the article.

    2 votes
  12. Comment on Apple Store's temperature checks may violate EU privacy rules, says German data protection office in ~tech

    JXM
    Link
    So I understand what the German authorities are trying to say and where they are coming from, but I completely disagree with them. You can easily do these temperature checks in a way which...

    So I understand what the German authorities are trying to say and where they are coming from, but I completely disagree with them.

    You can easily do these temperature checks in a way which respects privacy. Don’t keep any written data and if they have to ask for a name to check someone in, they can easily have that station after the temperature check and far enough away so that they are aurally (is that a word?) separated.

    4 votes
  13. Comment on Pushbullet: Let's guess what Google requires in 14 days or they kill our extension in ~tech

    JXM
    Link Parent
    I agree with you, as I said in my own post. What other options are there? These types of stories usually end up helping get enough public attention that Google/Apple/Whoever responds when they...

    I agree with you, as I said in my own post.

    I'm so fucking tired of reading about just how awful Google and Apple are to work with though, and all the shortcomings their walled gardens have, and how much stress and financial ruin they wreak on the developers that make their garbage platforms worth using.

    What other options are there? These types of stories usually end up helping get enough public attention that Google/Apple/Whoever responds when they normally wouldn't.

    3 votes
  14. Comment on Pushbullet: Let's guess what Google requires in 14 days or they kill our extension in ~tech

    JXM
    Link
    Things like this are what I dislike about massive tech companies. They send out a vague form email like this and then don't offer any clarification. It happens all the time in the Play Store and...

    Things like this are what I dislike about massive tech companies.

    They send out a vague form email like this and then don't offer any clarification. It happens all the time in the Play Store and the App Store. To me, being able to respond to things like this and give more detail are essential parts of offering any sort of store. Especially for a company as big as Google (or Apple).

    I pay Google a decent amount of money per month but it's damn near impossible to get through to a human and get actual answers or tech support when I have issues.

    Related, Pushbullet does have a Firefox extension.

    9 votes
  15. Comment on A 44,8 gigapixel photo of Rembrandt's The Night Watch painting (do not open on mobile data) in ~arts

    JXM
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    I wonder how something like this could be useful for art students or historians. These types of massive, detailed photos give you the ability to see the individual brush strokes that you'd...

    I wonder how something like this could be useful for art students or historians. These types of massive, detailed photos give you the ability to see the individual brush strokes that you'd previously only be able to see in person.

    Does having this kind of detail available anywhere in the world benefit these fields?

  16. Comment on Why no one is calling on Trump to resign in ~misc

    JXM
    Link Parent
    I suppose not. That's partly why I mentioned the other tactics like working to repeal some of the policies that he's put in place. Those will likely outlast him by a great long while. As they should.

    At this point in the election cycle, is there any benefit to this? Any legal process would likely take longer than the 6 months remaining until the presidential election in November. If you want him out, you've got the opportunity to vote him out in 6 months.

    I suppose not. That's partly why I mentioned the other tactics like working to repeal some of the policies that he's put in place. Those will likely outlast him by a great long while.

    Just so you know, (most of) the rest of the world is judging you right now. You don't have to wait for history.

    As they should.

    5 votes
  17. Comment on If one of your teammates falls ill, is someone prepared to step up? How to minimize the “bus factor.” in ~tech

    JXM
    Link
    I know this specific article is a bit more programmer focused, but I think there's a lot of good stuff in it. Most of it applies to all workplaces. Is this not a thing that everyone does? There's...

    I know this specific article is a bit more programmer focused, but I think there's a lot of good stuff in it. Most of it applies to all workplaces.

    However, it’s wise to develop contingency plans for short-term disruptions, too, such as when an employee is out for two weeks with the flu or goes on a long vacation.

    Is this not a thing that everyone does? There's four people in my department. We all make sure that we at least know the basics of everyone's job and have written instructions for the extremely important functions.

    There's no job that only one person in our department can do.

    Take an inventory of applications being used by teams or individuals and make note of the log-in information.

    Emphasis mine. I cannot tell you how important this is. I've been trying to get my department to adopt a shared password manager for a while now to avoid a situation where someone changes a password and forgets to update the rest of us.

    Just as you test data backup procedures – you do, don’t you? – you should test your short-term recovery processes often.

    This is something that gets overlooked a lot. You can have all the contingencies in the world, but they don't mean much if they aren't real world tested. The four people in my department all do one another's regular tasks every once in a while. I do almost exclusively video work, but occasionally I'll do a press release, just to make sure I know the process and it stays fresh should I need to step up in an emergency. It also helps to catch anything that's changed since the last time I did it.

    I can tell you that over the last two months, this preparedness has become invaluable.

    4 votes
  18. Comment on Prepper-style music hoarding in ~music

    JXM
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    I do something similar with my music. I have a Google Play Music subscription that I get for free with my YouTube Premium subscription. But I rarely use it. I basically use it to find new music....

    I do something similar with my music. I have a Google Play Music subscription that I get for free with my YouTube Premium subscription. But I rarely use it. I basically use it to find new music. If I find something I really like, I buy it and make sure I have a copy downloaded. That doesn’t happen too often, though. But over 20 years, I’ve built up my library of around 500 albums that I really love.

    But I think the author is way overthinking things. I keep everything organized locally on my Plex server. They’re still all just files but then I can easily access them on any device and even sync them locally so I don’t have to worry about not having a good signal. Just make sure they’re backed up somewhere else and then, presto, problem solved.

    5 votes
  19. Comment on Backblaze hard drive reliability stats, Q1 2020 in ~comp

    JXM
    Link
    I always find these fascinating. I love seeing these large scale surveys that very few companies could do. Recently, it was extremely helpful because I ran out of space on my Plex server’s 4 TB...

    I always find these fascinating. I love seeing these large scale surveys that very few companies could do.

    Recently, it was extremely helpful because I ran out of space on my Plex server’s 4 TB drive and used their previous guide to decide which hard drive to purchase.

    I actually had to buy an external drive because it was cheaper than an internal model.

    3 votes