It can be both. It's called Schroedinger's Hawking.
Entertainment and recreation.
George R.R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire is fantastic. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Song_of_ice_and_fire
You may be familiar with the first novel A Game of Thrones, made into an HBO mini-series.
Where I come from, the difference between the 80%-ers and the 100%-ers is like comparing amateurs to professionals.
I know you feel our chances are dim, but don't you hope for more from us as a species than to be forever relegated to this planet? Is that all we were ever meant to be? Earth-bound? At some point we need to take that next step away from here and it will never make "sense" to do so in the short term. I just think the payoffs would be huge, the knowledge gained worth it, and the species as a whole would be motivated to do more than what we're mired in now.
It is the insatiable thirst of the human ego. It's why reality TV has taken off. Everybody wants to be noticed for some reason. Everyone at one time or another thinks that what they've just thought or done is either funny enough or important enough for people to know about immediately. It's generally not the case, but now there's nothing to stop you from announcing it globally. "Look at me!"
The dedicated device vs. multi-function device is a scale determined by the end user's convenience level. From your description, you're willing to sacrifice convenience (i.e. carrying only 1 device) for efficiency. There are a lot of folks who weigh the convenience side more heavily. I always thought that's how the
As my wife is so fond of saying...."It's all about the packaging."
Who decides how dire is dire enough?
Mark Knopfler, obviously.
Humor for nothing. Slashdot is free.
If I recall correctly, 'twas Nick Mason who uttered those words.
I like to think Burton's soul spawned the Swedish Melodic Death Metal scene and all of In Flames, Dark Tranquility and At The Gates music has a piece of him in it.
It seems like poker, played against other RL opponents, would be outside the bounds of this, although there's no guarantee that you won't be stuck at a table with a bunch of other people colluding to take your money (or one person playing several seats).
No guarantee, but there are plenty of safeguards. The two biggest online poker sites, PokerStars and Full Tilt, each take colluding very seriously and if a player suspects something, they are encouraged to report it. With respect to one person playing several seats, there are also ways to detect and prevent that too. The above two risks you mention are very minimal and not really something to worry about at all.
Excellent Prince of Darkness reference.
I once mis-spelled the word "fogger" by typing "flogger." I hadn't realized it until a co-worker need to port my code to another application. We left it as flogger simply for amusement. The code worked properly though.