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Comment: Re:iPad 1 anyone? (Score 1) 210

by swb (#49625929) Attached to: Google Can't Ignore the Android Update Problem Any Longer

No, because they're too busy re-launching the crashed browser because the inadequate RAM on the device makes it choke and die on today's Javascript-heavy web pages.

The iPad 1 is a great tablet for letting your kids watch movies on an airplane, but it's obsolete for most every other use. Even my wife, who would still be watching TV on a 13" tube set if I hadn't given it away, finally gave in and bought a last year's iPad air versus putting up with it any longer.

IMHO, the iPads are pretty decent at longevity -- I have 8.3 on my iPad 3 and it's arguably no worse than it was on 7.x.

I think Apple could benefit everybody by doubling (or more) the RAM they put into iPads. New OS releases and expanding app capabilities eat into RAM to the point where you can't keep apps cached in RAM long enough and app switching becomes app re-launching and the inevitable grinding away as they refresh paged-out objects from the network.

IMHO this is what makes them slow/crash/obsolete. I'm sure the iPad 1 with 4 gigs of RAM would still be pretty useful.

Comment: Re:Another market overlooked (Score 1) 309

by swb (#49625685) Attached to: Tesla's Household Battery: Costs, Prices, and Tradeoffs

It's a good question.

When our house was built in 1957 it had a fuse panel. Someone in the late 1970s/early 1980s upgraded it to a 100A breaker panel and did some significant wiring changes.

When we remodeled in 2003, I had the service upgraded to 200A and beat the total chaos of rewiring by having the new service feed a 200A panel and then fed the old panel from the new panel, deftly avoiding the chaos of trying to rewire a hot mess of Romex, BX, flexible metal conduit (original to the house) and EMT to a new panel.

A commercial electrician I used to work with did the wiring when he built his house and piped all of it, most of it in 1" EMT with a couple of strategic junction boxes. In theory he could rewire relatively easily by just pulling more wire in existing pipe.

I always kind of wondered why houses didn't go one better and have raceways integrated into them.

Comment: Re:A useful link for all of ya ... (Score 1) 1047

by Pseudonym (#49625233) Attached to: Two Gunman Killed Outside "Draw the Prophet" Event In Texas

They did not "coexist" with European monarchies. The Caliphates conquered as much of the area around them as they could, and it was the European countries that had the geography and political powers to resist conquest.

You made me spit my coffee, thanks.

Do you honestly think that the Caliphates were in any way different from European colonists? Do you honestly think that Persia left everyone alone for the 1500 years before Islam came along? Do you know about the Russo-Persian and Anglo-Persian wars, or the 1953 Iranian coup? Do you know anything about the history of Indonesia, Malaysia, and Algeria? What do you think caused the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan?

The history of Islam is war with non-Islam. There have been periods of peace ... but we're exiting that, right now.

The history of Islam is the history of everywhere else in the world.

Incidentally, you wrote this less than a week after the 100th anniversary of the start of the Battle of Gallipoli, where the British Empire (Australians and New Zealanders commemorate the battle most closely) fought the Ottoman Empire, which was Germany's ally.

It is tragic how many people are killed each year by European Christian suicide bombers and terrorists.

The West prefers drone strikes these days. It's far less personal.

Still, I think the Religion of Peace is winning in bodycount.

Nobody has yet beaten the record of Mao's China, although Stalin's Russia came pretty close.

Comment: School me on well water (Score 0) 284

Is "well water" (drill hole into water table, pump out water) always used raw and unfiltered? Has it traditionally always been safe to drink anywhere you can sink a well, or is there some history of bad wells due to natural contamination?

Every home I've ever been that had well water at least had a water softener and often had issues with high iron content. A woman I worked with who grew up on a farm said they had to buy bottled water (the giant kind of bottles you see on old school water coolers) for visitors because they had some kind of low-level bacterial contamination her family was immune to but would make guests sick.

It seems like it would be common sense anymore to have a whole-house reverse osmosis system if you had a well. If not for health then for not choking your plumbing with mineral build up and making your washing machine and dishwasher work.

Comment: Re: trickle down economics (Score 1) 205

Do you understand what 'rich fuckers' do now? They pay property taxes at an obscene rate to fund their local public schools and then leave the public school system to privately fund their children's education elsewhere, leaving more money in the school system for the other students.

I think it depends on how you define "rich fuckers". Astronomically, family-dynasty rich? Sure, they pay big property taxes either in an urban school district which is so chronically underfunded and mismanaged that their generous and unused contribution doesn't make a difference or in some elite suburb which is so generously funded their contribution doesn't matter. And they're so rich they don't care.

On the larger scale though, the HENRY (high earner, not rich yet) generally flock together in affluent suburbs where their property taxes are pooled to fund really great school systems and where housing prices and housing policies basically redline the non-affluent out of the district.

The real benefit of this isn't the money per se, but the way it keeps out the problem children of the urban wasteland -- those whose parents don't participate in their kids' education or really provide any structure in their lives. These kids are the drag on urban school systems through discipline problems, the extra work required by teachers to get them back to any kind of baseline, special education needs, etc.

An average funded school district can educate children well if the kids have some kind of parent-engaged baseline to start with.

Comment: Re:Maybe it's a sign... (Score 1) 32

by swb (#49619489) Attached to: Cisco Names Veteran Robbins To Succeed Chambers as CEO

Aren't they already getting squeezed?

There are more than a few decent layer 3 switches with command sets nearly Cisco config compatible that don't require the high-dollar smartnet for support and then companies like Juniper at the high end.

Most places where I see Cisco switching deployed could have gotten away with most anyone's switching product and gotten the same performance and they barely tap the feature set and certainly not to the point where they're doing anything Cisco specific.

Comment: Re:A useful link for all of ya ... (Score 1) 1047

by Pseudonym (#49618815) Attached to: Two Gunman Killed Outside "Draw the Prophet" Event In Texas

Hint: mockery and blasphemy is a HUGE part of modern American culture.

It's tempered by the maxim that you never punch down. That's why you never see blackface any more.

The fact that they are asshats doesn't change the fact that they are legally in the right, and the fact that they are legally in the right doesn't change the fact that they are asshats. As such, they should neither be censored nor admired.

I don't advocate censorship, but I strongly advocate censureship.

Comment: Re:A useful link for all of ya ... (Score 1) 1047

by Pseudonym (#49618779) Attached to: Two Gunman Killed Outside "Draw the Prophet" Event In Texas

Do you know what a Caliphate is?

I do! They were hereditary monarchies which claimed divine right, in a way that was essentially indistinguishable from the monarchies of Europe with which they coexisted. The last caliphate was abolished at the same time and in the same way that many European monarchies were abolished: in the aftermath of World War I. Like them, it was abolished by popular support of the people.

Did you have a point, or did you just want everyone to understand that Muslim people of Middle Eastern descent are no different from Christian people of European descent?

The more I want to get something done, the less I call it work. -- Richard Bach, "Illusions"