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Comment Re:60 years later (Score 1) 117

Nothing wipes out humiliation of a country that no longer exists like going to the moon 60 years later with a rocket that - still on paper - is 1/6 as capable.

Try to be fair - it is a good exercise, if nothing else. The US moon landing was not really much more than an expensive dick waving expedition with little or no plans for the future, as events have shown. Hopefully what the Russians and Chinese intend to do will be more planned and more constructive. I mean, it makes my shudder to think that anybody travelled up there in a tin can with a computer system about as powerful as a Furby. Brave - very brave; just not all that smart.

In my view, we should start sending up robotic equipment - autonomous or remote controlled - until we can build a substantial base in which people can live for longer periods of time. I wouldn't be surprised if the Chinese and Russians have something like that on their minds. Hopefully they will let us join them, and then we can work together to reach Mars.

Comment Re:Violence! (Score 1) 483

there has been continuous jewish presence in the holyland for 3 millenia. they get driven out, they come back, they get massecred, they bounce back. etc. etc. they kind of like it there.

You almost sound like you want to tell us something. Do you mean that ecause the Jews have always been there, they have a right to take over? Don't get me wrong - I'm pragmatic enough to accept the status quo, but I am quite allergic to ideological and religious zealots claiming special rights based on fiction.

they didn't conquer the land, so much as, the ottoman empire imploded and that's what the winners of WW2 did with it. The jews defended whatever borders they could and i think the majority of the palestinian refugees fled voluntarily, because they thought they'd be coming back to a judenrein area, or that's what the arab world was telling them.

Heh, I see what you are doing there: trying to sneak in a suggestion, that the Palestinians are somehow a kind of Nazis, by using a German sounding word: 'judenrein'. Certain factions in Israel are practicing that sentiment very well, with the tacit approval of the Israeli government, it would appear. Whatever you say, the territory was built on conquest, taken from the Palestinians, and even now, how many years later? - you are still denying them a nation of their own. Why is that? Are the Jews somehow the master race and the goyim inferior? I think it is fair question - it is so easy to see the Jewish exclusiveness as expressing such a view. Again, I should probably repeat that I am not an anti-semite; for all I know, many of my friends and colleagues could well be Jews, I have never given it much thought. To me, each individual stands on their own merits; I assume the Jews have their fair share of both good and bad people.

Comment Re:Violence! (Score 1) 483

Thank you for correcting me on the history of things :-)

I think the gist of my considerations is still valid, though - Israel's claim to any territory has little to do with ancient history and everything to do with the fact that they have conquered the land from the Palestinians. And they stand to lose their privileged position in the world, when the balance of power shifts away from the US - something that seems increasingly likely, IMO.

Comment IMHO that's good (Score 4, Insightful) 97

Personally, I think the anonymity of people in massive cities is the source of many of the problems of city life.

A lot of urbanites poo-pooh the closed-minded clannishness of small town life, but part of the VALUE of this life (I live in a MN town of 1500) is that people know each other. They know each others' families, they know their histories.

If you're an asshole, people know it and will remember it. So you make SURE you don't act like an asshole. Cities? You'll likely never see that person again, so who gives a shit?

Comment Nostalgic nonsense (Score -1, Troll) 95

After it gets released we realize that we are older and the new shows just don't seem the same anymore.
Ahh nostalgia blinders the reason why crap we loved when we were young and stupid still has a place in our heart.
It is the same reason why the Tea Party has some sort of love affair with the 1950's sure we're a sneeze away from mutual destruction but the propaganda made us feel at ease.

Comment Re:Violence! (Score 2, Interesting) 483

You've got that spot on, I think. But first things first - as always when commenting on these issues, I'll start by stating that I am not, in any way, anti-semitic; I am not against the right of Jews to live and enjoy life and freedom just like everybody else, no matter what their religion or race. I am, however, against the state of affairs that is largely being perpetuated by the State of Israel.

The existence of modern Israel has come about based on a combination of the bad conscience of the Western powers af WWII and the myth of the lost homeland of the Jews. Yes, there was once a nation called Israel, as far as we know - but that nation was itself based on the conquest of a previous nation followed by genocide of the previous inhabitants (if we are to believe the Bible, and who would doubt the Holy Scriptures, eh? Certainly not the Jews, I would have thought). Perhaps we should go and dig out the Filistrians and reinstate them in their rightful homeland? All nations are ephemeral in nature, Israel included.

As for the role of the bad conscience of the West: however atrocious the Holocaust was, it is now part of a history that is getting ever more remote. I think we have learnt the lesson of that and many countries - Germany not least - have redeemed themselves. What happened back then should not be used as a carte blanche to excuse the present days state of Israel for any and all actions they desire to take. On the contrary, the memory of these horrors should inspire the citizens of Israel to be better than their opressors - and far better, not 'only just'. But there is a far more practical consideration: the might of the West is in decline. Soon nations like China and India, and later other nations who have no particular issue either for or against Israel, will play a role that may change the way Israel is being supported beying reason. In light of this, would it not be sensible if Israel started making friends with their neighbors? They can - but not if they allow their own religious extremists and their selfish landgrabbers to rule the country like they seem to do now.

Comment Re:Avoidance (Score 1) 82

Ethics are a complex set of issues. The higher execs tend to work with big picture ideas. This often means ignoring the needs of the little guy. They may go we need to cut costs 25% otherwise the company cannot compete and will be out of business within a few years.
The middle manager will need to figure out how to cut cost 25% meaning they will decide if they need to lay off workers or cut benefits or find other ways to save money without affecting profit.
The normal workers can focus on performance their jobs to the best and make their customers happy.

Having the normal worker next to the exec would cause him to try to save 25% himself although that isn't his job. So he may try to do things such as aggressive marketing (aka lie to customers) push for short cut solutions etc... Just so he can prove that he is effective.

The distance means the idea will be vetted across many layers each one adding a degree of humanity so the hard big picture idea can be broken down by each person to get a full solution without having to violate ethics.

Comment ok (Score 5, Insightful) 217

"... some observers worry that students pursuing profitable degrees in engineering or business would get better repayment terms than those studying to become nurses or teachers..."

And that sounds completely REASONABLE.

TAANSTAFL, people.
I know you really want a giant grant so you can get that PhD in Russian Literature but you know what? To live, you need money. To have money, you need to have a job. Life is work, and work is (usually) shit. If you're staggeringly lucky, you get to do something you love for pay. More often, you rationalize whatever enjoyment you can out of what gig you can get.

But you're simply not entitled to do what you want, and have someone else pay for it. I'm sorry if your parents never taught you that. We can talk all day long about the bullshit costs of colleges, and I'll entirely agree with you. My dad? Full ride as a football player in 1955 to the U of MN, this was noted in the paper as worth $300/year.
I went to the same school in 1986-1990, and my college education cost about $3600-$4500 annually as I recall.
My son going to the same school this year, it's about $25k/year.

Using RoI calculators on the web, my dad's tuition this year would be $2600.
Mine would be $9800.
That's absolute horse shit, and personally I suspect at least part of it has to do with ample grants and easy loans since the mid 1980s. Clearly, it's not going to teachers.

Comment Re:They will go one step further (Score 1, Insightful) 386

Apple has the problem of being highly visable with any problem with there devices. Apple users are picky and there are a bunch of haters who are willing to exploit any issue. A scam company makes a charger that is essentially plugging the wires to the wall and people who used it had there phones catch on fire will blame apple for their phones catching on fire. iPhone catches fire spreads across the Internet. Not stupid person bought a cheap ripoff charger that feed the phone direct ac current from the wall.

Comment Depends if you want to support it (Score 4, Informative) 320

That really is the big issue with a self build: If something goes wrong, you have to track it down and handle all the support. If you get a pre-built from a good vendor, they'll handle it all. Say what you want about Dell, but all you have to do is run their diags (baked in to the UEFI) and call them with the code, they'll send a dude with the parts needed.

So that should be the major thing you think about. If you don't want to do support, then buy it from a vendor that will provide you with support to the level you require. I tend to recommend Dell because their hardware is reasonable and they have support available everywhere. They subcontract it, but it all works well. We use it at work all the time.

If you are willing to do support yourself, then building it gets you precisely what you want. I build my system at home because I have very exacting requirements for what I'm after and nobody has that kind of thing for sale. Like I don't want a "good large power supply", I want a Seasonic Platinum 1000, nothing else.

Also you'll find that generally at the higher end of things you save money building a system. For more consumer/office range stuff it usually is a wash: They build the mass market systems around as cheap as you could afford to. However when you start talking higher end gaming stuff, you can pay a large premium for things.

As an example I just built a system for a good friend of mine. He wanted some very, very high end hardware and pretty specific requirements. Origin PC would get him what he wanted... for about $9,000. I put it together for around $6,000. The gamer stuff often commands a hefty premium.

Comment Cynical? (Score 3, Interesting) 121

Maybe I'm just becoming increasingly cynical in my old age, but this article reads like a slashvertisement.

Taking the time to look up DAVID SCHELTEMA and CHIP and Next Thing, either a) he's a committed hobbyist who out of altruism spends the majority of his time promoting projects that he genuinely feels are superior in dozens, scores, perhaps even HUNDREDS of articles for more than a year across nearly every conceivable media form from magazines to blogs to twitter, or b) he's a paid shill (or investor) in this project.

Those who claim the dead never return to life haven't ever been around here at quitting time.