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Comment: Re:Incandescent will be best for the environment. (Score 1) 237

by Bill_the_Engineer (#47428647) Attached to: My most recent energy-saving bulbs last ...

Thanks for the suggestion, but I already have a high efficiency heat pump and according to the Geothermal Savings Calculator my annual cooling savings is only $471/yr (heating is only $255/yr).

At least by supplementing my electrical source with solar energy, I can use any possible excess on lighting or appliances.

Comment: Re:Sinking ship... (Score 1) 93

by Bill_the_Engineer (#47414209) Attached to: Rob Pardo Says Farewell To Blizzard

What killed guilds are the large number of teenagers who joined the game and over compensated for being a nobody at high school by being massive dicks online. They would act nice until they joined and then they would troll the guild channel and create "drama" all fucking night. You can /gkick them to the cows come home and you'll find put that they left an alt character behind to continue to fuck with the guild. We had trouble managing the banks because they would constantly raid it without putting anything of value back. Not to mention they felt entitled to a rank promotion after only being a member for a week and bitch when we tell them no because we only had 4 ranks in our guild to control access to the bank ("recruit", "member", "veteran", "Guild Master").

The guild I'm in now (when I'm online) only has about 250 characters (including alts) and because we are all working adults, we average around 11 to 17 people online during the evenings. We don't recruit anymore. We just invite friends we know personally or people who are raiding with us on a regular basis. We enjoy the Flex raid feature and do the regular raids too. We view the LFR feature positively since it allows us working folks to farm for gear that can be used during flex and regular 10-man and 25-man raids. The gear from LFR is not high enough to do anything worthwhile in the end games so it's a nice compromise.

Comment: Re:It's 2014 (Score 0) 348

by Bill_the_Engineer (#47369545) Attached to: Bug In Fire TV Screensaver Tears Through 250 GB Data Cap

And in instances where under-served areas tried to create their own municipal broadband network, the ISPs that weren't serving them sued to stop them or got their lobbied state officials to pass laws declaring that illegal.

Their argument is that government shouldn't compete against private enterprise. They didn't sue to stop an independent non-profit or an small business from starting an ISP.

If a community isn't being served by an existing ISP, why is municipal broadband "eliminating competition"? If an area has an ISP but they are refusing to improve service, how is adding a municipal broadband option eliminating competition?

Again is it okay for the government to compete with private enterprise?

People were upset when Walmart used their corporate capital and scale to undercut local businesses and caused them to close and eliminated a lot of competition in rural America (remember Walmart targeted rural markets first). People should be even more upset if the government used tax dollars to undercut a business and cause them to close. It sets a dangerous precedent and a lot of people prefer the government to stick to the basics.

Is the presence of the USPS eliminating competition from FedEx and UPS?

Apple vs. Oranges. The USPS already existed when both FedEx and UPS were formed. Also FedEx and UPS are private enterprises that offered services that weren't available from the government backed USPS.

People take offense when the government decides to compete with private enterprise in an established industry. People do not take offense when private enterprise competes with the government by offering services not provided by the government. A capitalist society favor capitalist solutions. I don't always agree but that's the meat of the argument.

Comment: Re:It's 2014 (Score 1) 348

by Bill_the_Engineer (#47369409) Attached to: Bug In Fire TV Screensaver Tears Through 250 GB Data Cap

I would like to add that if I wanted to simply be an ISP, I could easily offer DSL and attach some value added service to it. There are a number of communication companies that advertise in my area that offer business communication solutions including DSL internet and PBX services. I'm sure the same can be said in other cities in the US.

Comment: Re:It's 2014 (Score 4, Insightful) 348

by Bill_the_Engineer (#47369321) Attached to: Bug In Fire TV Screensaver Tears Through 250 GB Data Cap

Do you speak from experience? I am and the real roadblock is cost and market inertia.

If I wanted to invest a lot of money into fiber optics and spend the next 10 to 20 years recouping my capital investment I do not believe city hall would be my roadblock. I would need to convince my investors and bank that we could recoup our money and make a profit despite the established carriers using their size and mostly paid for infrastructure to undercut us.

The reason that Comcast and others are offering higher bandwidths (without raising the cap) is not because of consumer demand but to defend their territory. It's hard to convince the bank that you will offer something not available elsewhere when they see commercials for "up to 150 mbps" offered at a price below what you would have to charge just to break even.

The only way I would be able to even apply for a permit and pay the franchise fees is by making an insane amount of profit in an internet related venture and I wanted to spend some of the profits to have direct access to my customers (or users). This would not only allowed me to experiment with services that require high bandwidth but also provide good public relations stories to advertise in my other markets. You know like Google does. Also notice how many large cities compete for their next fiber deployment.

"I'm not a god, I was misquoted." -- Lister, Red Dwarf

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