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Comment: Re:Don't blame the book industry... (Score 1) 212

Bullshit. Amazon does not require DRM. It is an option that the publisher chooses. I chose no DRM for my book, because I think DRM is stupid. (link) Once upon a time, long ago, Amazon may have put on DRM by default, but they've given publishers (big and small) the option to have it or not for a long time. Bitch at the publishers about DRM, and unnecessarily high prices for ebooks. They need to learn that both of these are turning off customers and depressing sales.

Comment: I know I'm an edge case... (Score 1) 126

by Ira Sponsible (#43322233) Attached to: How Mobile Devices Kill Your Creativity

My mobile devices have actually contributed to my creativity. I'm a writer, and I've come to depend on my mobile devices quite a lot to, well, write. From my first palm Zire to my current Motorola Flipout, I've depended on my mobile devices to write and edit my various stories. The internet connected devices have also been tremendously handy to do quick research on the various subjects relevant to my writing. In each of the boredom cases listed in the article, I'm much more likely to be continuing whatever current story I'm working on or doing research directly related to it. Before my mobile devices, I had to use a notebook if I wanted to get some writing done away from the computer. Obviously, that was quite a lot less convenient than a handy gizmo that fits comfortably in my pocket and is easier to read than the nigh-indecipherable scribble of my handwriting. So you'll see me standing in line between the guy texting his girlfriend and the girl giggling at the latest grumpy cat picture while I'm actually doing something worthwhile, and creative.

If you're curious, my first completed, published novel, which was written entirely on mobile devices, is available here:
Amazon Trade Paperback (Createspace pays me better, but it's still Amazon),
Lulu epub, Kindle, Nook, and iBooks.
It's also free in its entirety on wattpad. I've actually gotten sales from people who started reading it here.

Comment: Re:DRM-free largely stops at 1922 (Score 1) 465

by Ira Sponsible (#42502527) Attached to: Death of Printed Books May Have Been Exaggerated

You could buy my book. No one has complained it's not "professional-quality." I specifically requested no DRM from Amazon. It can be done. It's easy. Amazon doesn't require it, it's up to the publisher, and since the publisher is me, and I think DRM is stupid, I made it DRM-free. Just because I'm not a big name yet doesn't mean I can't produce a worthwhile piece of entertainment that stands equal to the best of what's available. If I were a big name, writing for a big publisher, I would demand DRM-free, since it doesn't matter how big you are, DRM is always stupid. Of course it's also available in paper form, for those who prefer it that way.

Links:
Amazon Kindle version of Cerberon
Printed version from Amazon
And if you prefer it from someone other than Amazon:
Lulu totally device agnostic DRM-free epub from Lulu. Wil Wheaton told me to use them.
B&N Nook version (also DRM-free, as far as I'm aware).
Apple iTunes iBook version, despite the fact that iDespise iTunes.
Createspace printed version, which is also Amazon, but gives me a better commission if people buy it here.
Straight from me, half the book as a free preview. DRM-free epub, of course.

Apologies for the advertisement, but you asked.

Comment: Re:I'll auto-Godwin myself (Score 1, Interesting) 385

by Ira Sponsible (#42430311) Attached to: China's Controversial Brain Surgery To Cure Drug Addiction

Explain the reelection of George W. Bush and Barack Obama then.

In the last few elections, it's been worse than just picking the lesser of two evils. It's more like having to choose between Satan and Cthulu. You know you're screwed either way. One will only corrupt you and steal your soul, the other one will drive you insane, turn you into a gibbering eldritch abomination and unravel the fabric of reality. I voted for the minor third party candidate Kodos. Who did you vote for?

Comment: Depression - Distraction (Score 2) 174

Add my anecdotal evidence to the pile. In my own case, I have been depressed on account of the amazing suckitude of my life, and have deliberately turned to the distraction of multiple forms of media (books, TV, music, interwebs, beer, etc.), often simultaneously. Recognizing the external factors of my life that make it suck are beyond my control, and thinking about these things leads directly to depression, it is only reasonable to prevent thinking about these things by occupying my mind with anything else at all.

Comment: Tinfoil Hat: ON. (Score 1) 401

by Ira Sponsible (#41938623) Attached to: CIA Director David Petraeus Resigns, Citing Affair
Now Petraeus won't be testifying before Congress about Benghazi. This "affair" is a perfect excuse for him to disappear. No one will wonder why he's not coming into work, or why he's not at home. Don't be surprised if his body is discovered in a few days, and it's called a suicide, complete with a handy explanatory suicide note. Just my suspicious opinion.

Comment: Thinking wastes time. (Score 1) 398

by Ira Sponsible (#41553457) Attached to: For Obama, Jobs, and Zuckerberg, Boring Is Productive
Subject says it all. It's a maxim I've observed for a long time.
My dad also taught me that prejudice saves time.
He's right.
And before you get all upset and "that's racist!" over that statement, just remember that prejudice can apply to anything. I am prejudiced against Toyotas, Saturns, Microsoft, anything requiring the use of iTunes, DRM, CocaCola, Disney, cats, small dogs, assholes and liberal Democrats. Some of these prejudices are arbitrary and others are clearly deserving.
Thus, just as the people described in the article, I have more free mental space to think about things that are more important to me.
Beer

Beer Is Cheaper In the US Than Anywhere Else In the World 633

Posted by timothy
from the beat-the-high-cost-of-living-and-die dept.
derekmead writes "It's frustrating to drop $7 on a pint of beer in New York City, as it turns out, Americans have the cheapest beer on Earth. International bank UBS gathered data about the median wages and average retail prices of a 500mL (pint) beer in 150 countries. Those data were compiled to figure out how many minutes of work it takes the average worker of a country to earn enough money to buy a beer. It's funny that UBS analysts are spending time looking at beer, but considering that beer is beloved and nigh essential everywhere, it offers an interesting comparison between commodities and wages. For example, India tops the least, with the median worker having to work nearly an hour to afford a pint thanks to extremely low wages. In the U.S. however, where wages are relatively high and the cost of the average beer is quite low (thanks to those super-massive macrobreweries out there), it takes the median worker about five minutes of labor to afford a retail (store-, not bar-bought) pint. That's the shortest amount of time in the world, which means that, relatively speaking, beer is cheaper here than anywhere else." OK, UBS: Now please repeat the research with coffee.
Handhelds

Leak Hints Windows 8 Tablets May Be Dearer Than Makes Sense 365

Posted by timothy
from the boutique-prices dept.
MrSeb writes "If, like me, you thought Microsoft would price Windows RT competitively, you were wrong: A leaked slide from Asus says that its Vivo Tab RT, due to be released alongside Windows RT at the end of October, will start at $600. Unbelievably, this is $100 more than the iPad 3, and a full $200 more than the iPad 2 or Galaxy Tab 2 10.1. For $600, you would expect some sensational hardware specs — but alas, that's sadly not the case. The Vivo Tab RT has a low-res 10.1-inch 1366×768 IPS display, quad-core Tegra 3 SoC, 2GB of RAM, NFC, 8-megapixel camera and that's about it. Like its Androidesque cousin, the Transformer, the Vivo Tab RT can be plugged into a keyboard/battery dock — but it'll cost you another $200 for the pleasure. (Curiously, the Transformer's docking station only costs $150 — go figure.)"

It is not for me to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence. -- The Earl of Birkenhead

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