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Comment: Re:iRobU (Score 1) 123

by Fred Ferrigno (#43970451) Attached to: Cisco and iRobot Create Sheldonbot-Like Telepresence System

A show about factor workers would have those factory workers performing different hijinks at work. There would be different guest stars, but there'd still be guest stars. Different ingredients, same formula. And if you pay attention, many of the jokes only use science references as window dressing, when the real punchline is often something like Raj's inadvertent gay innuendo.

The Big Bang Theory is one of the highest rated shows. It is not a niche show that only appeals to intellectuals because of its sophisticated humor. It is a mass-market show that tries harder than you realize to appeal to a broad base.

Comment: It's still unethical (Score 2) 130

by Fred Ferrigno (#43910681) Attached to: Hackers Spawn Web Supercomputer On Way To Chess World Record

Whenever you visit any web page with Javascript enabled, you are inherently agreeing to execute some code on your system.

Just because you tricked the user into running your code doesn't mean it's OK to do whatever you want with their system. Users would never agree to run such code if they knew what it did ahead of time. If your software relies on lazy users who don't understand what they're agreeing to, then congratulations, you're a malware author.

Comment: Re:Offshore (Score 2) 300

by Fred Ferrigno (#43868485) Attached to: Could Bitcoin Go Legit?

If that's your definition, though, the real question is "why is legitimacy necessary?"

If they want, the US government can make exchanging dollars for Bitcoins in significant quantities very hard. They can also prevent law-abiding US-based businesses from accepting Bitcoins in exchange for goods and services. The utility of Bitcoins would be severely limited for most Americans.

What will happen is probably what has already happened to other areas that have been persecuted by the US government at the behest of incumbent industries: they'll just move off-shore.

Look at what happened to online poker. The US didn't stop it entirely, but they effectively cut off the American customer base by cutting transfers from US banks. It's to the point that Antigua filed a WTO complaint against the US and won the right to ignore US copyrights as retaliation.

Comment: Re:Transactional Currency, not Safe Haven Storage (Score 1) 490

by Fred Ferrigno (#43267883) Attached to: Will Legitimacy Spoil Bitcoin?

However, mined Bitcoins required Electricity and Hardware, very real assets to produce -- it is unlikely that large miners will be willing to release their BTC for a price significantly lower than the cost they incurred to generate the BTC

The cost/difficulty of mining is not constant, but adjusts in response to the number of nodes mining at any given moment. If the value of Bitcoins go down and people stop mining, the network responds by making it easier to mine so people start mining again. That way, Bitcoins are created at a predictable rate, whether Bitcoins are valued at $100 or $0.01. The price floor effect you're talking about won't happen.

Comment: Re:Rewriting history (Score 1) 327

by Fred Ferrigno (#43076021) Attached to: Apple's iWatch Could Come With IOS, Earn $6 Billion a Year

It was "totally new" in terms of being the first commercially viable product of its kind. There were flash-based players that held a few songs, laptop-drive based players that held more music but were not pocketable, and even MP3-capable CD players with the same problem.

The point is that you have to remember to compare those devices with the iPod of the same era, which was the 1G. And the 1G wasn't that much better, especially when you take the price into account. I think people have a tendency to recall what the iPod later became, not what it was at launch.

they were just the first practical ones for the mass market so they get the gold star.

The 1G didn't achieve mass-market success. It was a very expensive product that couldn't work with 98% of computers.

Comment: Re:It's what you learn, not earn. (Score 1) 133

by Fred Ferrigno (#42783547) Attached to: The Top Paying Tech Companies For Interns

Did you look at the list? They're the same top companies from every list of tech companies: Google, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, etc. They're not looking for mindless grunts. They're all very aggressive about recruiting top talent, which often leads to them competing against each other. The wages reflect that.

Comment: Re:should be apprenticeships not tied to being in (Score 1) 133

by Fred Ferrigno (#42783447) Attached to: The Top Paying Tech Companies For Interns

should be apprenticeships not tied to being in school and being in a tech / trades / Community College should not lock you out.

The standards for interns are lower because they're not done with school yet. If you're not in school, you'd be expected to apply as a regular employee and already have skills comparable to someone with a degree. Theoretically, you can do this without a degree from a top university, but in practice recruiters use the university as a first line filter, particularly if you have no experience.

And if they are full time jobs then forcing some one to be in school with the college time tables does not really work.

Internships are usually in the summer when students wouldn't be in school anyway. There are some longer co-op programs where you take time off from classes but still remain enrolled and even get credit for working. Considering tech internships tend to pay better than a summer job and greatly improve your chances of getting hired after graduation, you'd be stupid not to do it if you can.

Comment: Re:It's backwards (Score 2) 171

by Fred Ferrigno (#42703367) Attached to: Accessorize Your Phone With Another Phone

It's just a matter of which device is the one you use most and carry with you all the time and which device is the optional accessory you only carry when you need it. We call them "smartphones" but increasingly they're portable computers that are only occasionally used to make phone calls.

If you spend most of your time browsing the web and watching cat videos, it makes sense to put the connection in the device so you don't have to carry around a hotspot too. Then you have a Bluetooth headset -- which is basically what the HTC Mini is -- for those infrequent occasions when you need to have a long phone conversation. If you're not expecting any calls, you leave the headset at home.

Comment: This has deeper roots than the court case (Score 4, Informative) 589

by Fred Ferrigno (#42569455) Attached to: Aaron Swartz Commits Suicide

He very clearly struggled with depression for a long time. After he got fired from Wired, he made a blog post about someone committing suicide. He changed the person's name to "Alex" later, but it said Aaron when he wrote it. His friends took this to be a suicide note and called the cops to intervene. Afterwards, he denied that it was a suicide note, but admitted he wasn't in a good state of mind at the time.

He also posted an online 'will' of sorts back in 2002 when he was only 16. For a 16 year old kid to be making such concrete plans in case of his death speaks to his own expectations about his life.

Comment: Re:Nope (Score 1) 181

by Fred Ferrigno (#42564603) Attached to: Chinese Smartphone Invasion Begins

I just got a Nexus 4 and signed up for a $30/month plan with T-Mobile. It comes with 100 minutes and a soft cap of 5gb at 4G speeds. I use my phone more as a portable computer than a phone, so the low minutes are fine by me. For long calls, I use Google Voice for free with GrooVeIP.

The two year cost including the phone is $300 + $30*24 = $1020. A high-end phone with 5gb of 4G data on contract with one of the other carriers would be about twice that.

It is clear that the individual who persecutes a man, his brother, because he is not of the same opinion, is a monster. - Voltaire

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