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Comment: Re:WIRED (Score 1) 282

by rickb928 (#46788857) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Good Print Media Is Left?

Did you guilt them into a discount? I got a renewal for some stupid amount, $24/yr or so, and I called and told them it was over. The phone rep caved and I got an $11/yr renewal.

So I have now only missed Vol1 No1. The streak continues. And it is still worth reading, since they appear to have stamped out may of the gratuitous optical gimmicks that rendered it virtually unreadable in the early 00s. Migraine effects, which now only show up once or twice an issue. I'm still convinced they design around whatever press ink is in the 'oops' bin at the distributor, or on clearance.

Comment: Re:Useful Idiot (Score 1) 376

Snowden has been careful to release only the things he feels violated the oath he and others took to the U.S. Constitution

Please point out the part of the US Constitution that says the Federal Government can't spy on foreign countries, then justify Snowden's leaking of intelligence methods and sources that had nothing whatsoever to do with American domestic civil liberties.

Comment: Re:Useful Idiot (Score 0) 376

What the fuck do you milquetoast standard-bearers of pusillanimity expect him to do?

Put his actions before a jury of his peers, like the numerous whistle-blowers who came before him, none of whom fled to hostile countries? Restrict his leaks to pertinent information, rather than dumping EVERYTHING? Attempt to work within the system before trying to blow it up? Leak the information without outing yourself, remaining anonymous like Deep Throat did?

Anyway, I'm all for the balance of power. The best antidote to an abusive US empire is an abusive Sov^WRussian empire.

You'd probably have a different perspective on that if you lived in the Baltic States, Ukraine, Romania, Moldova, Finland, Georgia, or any of the Central Asian Republics.

Comment: Re:Useful Idiot (Score 1) 376

Yep -- if the US wanted to not give Putin a propaganda tool, they could have welcomed him back home with a guarantee of safety.

It'd make more sense to play the realpolitik game: "Put Mr. Snowden on a flight to New York and we'll quietly acquiesce to your annexation of Crimea."

Unfortunately realpolitik is not something the current administration is very good at. They're very good at making promises they can't keep, and threats they won't follow up on, but making cold calculations to further American interests in a dangerous world? Not so much.

Comment: Re:So other than those ten (Score 2) 33

by Shakrai (#46775791) Attached to: FBI Drone Deployment Timeline

How many times do they do it a week without all that official authorization stuff?

If they use them in criminal investigations the usage eventually becomes part of the public record when entered into evidence. Using them for search and rescue ought to be non-controversial enough. "National Security" is of course the grey area, though there's a fair amount of overlap between National Security and criminal prosecutions, for offenses like espionage or terrorism, so a lot of that use would eventually make it into the public record as well.

Comment: Re:But what is a militia? (Score 1) 1558

by Anubis IV (#46773885) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

Conscription is an independent topic that has no relevance here, since it can occur whether you're in the militia or not. We already have a regular military into which we can be (and have been) drafted in times of need, and for which every able-bodied male is required to register, so we're just as many steps away from a military police state now as we were before (thankfully, there's more than one step, since you'd have to get rid of stuff like the Posse Comitatus Act first). Whether we're in the militia or not makes no difference.

But, hey, can't resist getting in a "sheeple" dig, I guess?

Comment: Re:I will be a millionaire. (Score 1) 453

by Anubis IV (#46773549) Attached to: Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

I don't live in the same areas as "those arrogant egomaniacs [who] achieve stratospheric success", nor do I really have a professional network at all, yet I seem to be doing just fine for myself, despite only being out of grad school (which I dropped out of, incidentally) for about two-and-a-half years. Those things you think matter? I'm living proof that they don't always.

My job doesn't pay extraordinarily well, but it's work I enjoy doing at a company of great people, and the pay is "good enough" (I was offered 50% more at two other companies, a number which was in-line with industry averages for my skill set and experience, but turned them both down for this company, which I liked more). I'm already investing, have a home on which I was able to put 20% down, am tossing extra toward my house payments each month, and have still been able to make somewhat bigger purchases for myself every few months.

I simply live within my means and make sure that the amount out is less than the amount in. I choose carefully what things actually matter to me and then put my money towards those things, while buying budget-friendly items in the categories that I don't care about.

Comment: Re:Not a market back then (Score 3, Interesting) 266

by Anubis IV (#46772223) Attached to: Nokia Had a Production-Ready Web Tablet 13 Years Ago

While timing did play a part, I'd suggest it's not so much timing as it is execution that made the biggest difference, in this case.

Android and iOS tablets operate in broadly the same ways as each other and are wildly successful. Windows 8 tablets, which work in much the same way as the Windows tablets that preceded them (i.e. trying to bring the feel of a desktop OS to a tablet form factor), are failing to gain any significant presence in the market, despite having the right timing and loads of marketing. To me, that's a strong indication that the thing holding back tablets prior to iOS and Android arriving was not that people weren't ready for them, but that the tablet concept simply wasn't executed properly.

Same deal with smartphones. Smartphones were around since the '90s, but they only represented an incredibly small portion of the cell phone market. Fast forward a few years, and we get Android and iOS, which, when they first came out, had most of the same features as the smartphones that preceded them, yet they implemented and executed those in a drastically different way that made them much more compelling to users. Blackberry and Palm had the right timing, since they were there from the beginning. What they lacked was proper execution to bring it to the general population.

You're right that there wasn't a market back then, but there wasn't a market because there wasn't a product done right yet. Ideas are cheap. Execution is what matters.

Comment: Re:But what is a militia? (Score 1) 1558

by Anubis IV (#46768941) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

Thanks for the link. To summarize for everyone else, it essentially declares that all able-bodied male US citizens (or men who have declared their intent to become citizens) are automatically members of the militia if they are between 17 and 45 years old, and women are as well if they are US citizens that are members in the National Guard. For vets from the Regular military (i.e. Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines), the age limit is extended from 45 to 64.

So, while it doesn't protect the right to bear arms for everyone, it does protect that right for at least a good chunk of the population, which goes a long way towards protecting the purpose of the right.

"Look! There! Evil!.. pure and simple, total evil from the Eighth Dimension!" -- Buckaroo Banzai

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