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Comment: Context (Score 2) 49

by Bruce Perens (#49782349) Attached to: SpaceX Cleared For US Military Launches

This ends a situation in which two companies that would otherwise have been competitive bidders decided that it would cost them less to be a monopoly, and created their own cartel. Since they were a sole provider, they persuaded the government to pay them a Billion dollars a year simply so that they would retain the capability to manufacture rockets to government requirements.

Yes, there will be at least that Billion in savings and SpaceX so far seems more than competitive with the prices United Launch Alliance was charging. There will be other bidders eventually, as well.

Comment: Just then... (Score 4, Funny) 307

by istartedi (#49778647) Attached to: Why PowerPoint Should Be Banned

Just then there was a concussive shock. Momentarily the Post's reporter was transported into a netherworld of pounding, blinding light as his office exploded in a cloud of acrid smoke and swirling documents. He lost consciousness momentarily. When he awoke, there were several men standing over him with solemn, angry looks on their faces. Their black paramilitary uniforms were outlined in stark contrast against the white-boards and family photographs. "Who... who are you" he struggled to speak.

"We're the Power Point Rangers".

Comment: Re:Getting rich (Score 1) 104

by istartedi (#49769637) Attached to: Tech Bubble? What Tech Bubble?

Not sure why you're getting slammed by mods. This is truth. If big oil disappeared, you'd be up a creek. If big pharma went away, you might die. If the industrials went away, our infrastructure would rot.

If FaceBook disappeared? The world would actually be a better place. Tesla isn't perfect; I like electric cars but I hate some of the big brother that's coming along for the ride. Same deal though, we could live without them and somebody else will eventually pick up their patents and make electrics that are more affordable.

That's beside your point though. Your thesis is valid--buy value when it's priced properly. Futuristic vision and trends aren't value. Stuff people need is value, but it's overpriced now due to Fed manipulation.

Comment: Re:Twenty five years of science destruction... (Score 3, Informative) 118

This is the same kind of thing that was said in the US. The space program had more "spin-off" benefits than I can list. Computers, solar cells, etc. were all advanced by contributions from space research. If it hadn't been for computers in particular, I don't know what kind of work I would have had. It probably wouldn't have been such a good ride for me, and I was never directly employed by NASA. Yes. There are still poor people in the USA... carrying pocket computers.

Comment: Re:toxic microbeads? (Score 1) 247

by istartedi (#49756749) Attached to: California Votes To Ban Microbeads

It turns out that when you take materials that are usually not a problem, and change their surface chemistry, they can become problems. Take carbon, for example. Pencil "lead" is graphite. Not a problem. OTOH, take a look at a bottle of graphite lock lube. It's the same element, in a fine powder form. There are all kinds of warnings on it because it can get into your lungs.

IANAChemist but I think a real chemist would agree that surface chemistry is an exciting new field, and we don't know enough about it. Sometimes you can get exposed to things in weird ways because they're small.

To take an oddball analogy here... jumping up and down on a mile high peak is not a problem. People do it all the time. Now shrink the mountain down to six feet and try jumping up and down on the peak. Ouch.

Comment: Re:Military service can be mandatory, can cause ha (Score 1) 545

by SuiteSisterMary (#49750221) Attached to: California Senate Approves School Vaccine Bill

I'd love to hold society to the standard that no child should have to risk death due to parental stupidity. That's just not California. If you really want to uphold this ideal, you'll have to crusade for myriad causes, including gun control, obesity-fighting measures, tighter distribution of driver's licenses, promotion of breastfeeding, etc, etc. On the list of annual deaths in California caused by parental stupidity, lack of vaccination is near the bottom of the list.

All of this is true. However, lack of vaccination will rapidly climb the lists if America's current anti-science, anti-education and anti-logic trends are allowed to continue.

Education

Student Photographer Threatened With Suspension For Sports Photos 379

Posted by timothy
from the you-belong-to-the-state dept.
sandbagger writes: Anthony Mazur is a senior at Flower Mound High School in Texas who photographed school sports games and other events. Naturally he posted them on line. A few days ago he was summoned to the principal's office and threatened with a suspension and 'reporting to the IRS' if he didn't take those 4000 photos down. Reportedly, the principal's rationale was that the school has copyright on the images and not him.

Comment: Re:Since there's no downside, why not go all out? (Score 1) 1090

by SuiteSisterMary (#49743171) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

I don't think there's a downside to a minimum wage, or at least, not a compelling one.

As to specific implementation details. I really don't know. Not my field. My lay opinion would be that, well, it needs to be tied to the local cost of living and what not, but it would be a bitch to administrate. But no, having the minimum wage in Buttfuck Arkansas and Los Angeles be the same is probably sub-optimal.

I intended more to point out that while a small increase is basically a cost-of-living raise, a large increase will, indeed, likely do more harm than good.

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