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Comment: Where is the comment option? (Score 1) 237

by JWallyR (#46168529) Attached to: Update on the March of Progress: How Slashdot's New Look Is Shaping Up
Have comments been blocked on this story? I can't imagine why. All I can say is that I was forced to "reply" to the apparent parent post because I couldn't find the link in the shittastic interface to type my comment about how terrible the new interface is. Tons of wasted space (line spacing longer, blank white rectangle on the right side of the comments field below the sidebar, which itself shouldn't exist) all in the name of looking "modern". This "update" is a step down in every possible way from the previous interface, and the apparent refusal of the site administrators to abort this project speaks very poorly of the site's leadership. Been nice knowing you, Slashdot.

Comment: Re:Probably Obama. Or the Tea Party. (Score 1) 569

by JWallyR (#45269735) Attached to: Why Is Broadband More Expensive In the US Than Elsewhere?

Horrendously wrong.

Capitalism is a game in which the goal is simply to make the most money (with the least effort). The "free market" (aka competition) is just one of many possible strategies to make the most money.

I have to correct you here, because you are way, way off in your description of these concepts.

Capitalism is a "game" in the sense that every system is a game. "Evolution is a "game" in which the goal is to pass on your genes, and therefore (insert discussion of evolution using game terms)." etc. I strongly suspect (due to your following statements) that you're using "game" as a pejorative term to discredit the idea of capitalism because, although you don't really know what it means, you've been told that it's worse than (insert another economic system here) based on (insert oversimplified discussion of benefits of other economic system and pitfalls of capitalism).

Capitalism is a system of economics in which (hypothetically) the capital means of production are owned by individuals, rather than the state, and through the mechanism of offer/counteroffer, prices are "discovered" due to market action. The "free market" is a related, but distinct concept based on the idea that the most efficient economies are reached through market action that is facilitated by a few conditions, including:
1) Low (or nonexistent) barriers to entry in a market
2) Widespread access to information
3) Etc.

In such a free market, the price that a company would be able to charge (i.e. the price that buyers would be willing to pay) would always draw very close to the cost of offering their product or service, due to the ability of competitors to jump into the market and undercut a company charging exorbitant rates, the knowledge of the buyers that the rates being charged were excessive, etc.
However, the market created by the Telcos doesn't even remotely resemble a free market, due to:
1) EXTREMELY high barriers to entry (legal monopolies on "the last mile" within residential neighborhoods, HUGE infrastructure costs in laying the network infrastructure outside these neighborhoods, etc.)
2) The Telcos are often owned by the same vested interests that control the media, and therefore the information regarding the costs to provide these services is deliberately hidden/not broadcast/drowned out by misinformation/etc.

In other words, while your assertion that "practically every business on earth bends over backwards to avoid the free market at all costs" is essentially correct, your understanding of *why* this is the case is so wrong as to be dangerous.
The issue here is: the telecommunications market is not free and never has been. For a variety of reasons, a free Telco market is both impossible and impractical, and therefore the closest thing that we can do is have the infrastructure be handled as a government-owned utility, and have the providers of service compete against each other... but this is not remotely the same thing as "free markets are a bad strategy for business"...

Comment: Re:Only one thing to do! (Score 1) 322

by JWallyR (#44657523) Attached to: Open Source Mapping Software Shows Every Traffic Death On Earth

Virtually all proposed gun legislation would not make a difference in gun crimes..

So propose something that would make a difference. I'm willing to hear you out.

So in the absence of something that will work, your suggestion to do something that won't work, but will have significant negative effects is superior to doing nothing at all?
Do you still not see why people who value their 2nd amendment rights object to gun control?

Comment: Re:I see a lot of negative posts on this (Score 1) 302

by JWallyR (#41030921) Attached to: The Rapid Rise of License Plate Readers

Isn't there any love for police here being able to do their job more effectively?

No there isn't and there is a very simple reason for this.

People who regularly break traffic laws will have to stop complaining about the police and start taking responsibility for breaking the traffic laws. This is unconscionable to the speeder, tailgater, weaver and lane hog. Their inability to drive within the rules is so clearly not their fault, it must be "revenue raising" or some such and they should for no reason drive within the speed limit, at a safe distance nor exercise proper lane discipline. Worse yet, it would mean they would have to admit their ability to drive is somewhat less than perfect, again this is so wrong it cannot even be considered.

1) Plenty of evidence is available that shows that traffic laws are set for many reasons, with safety being merely the excuse for their existence. See the numerous complaints of yellow lights being shortened to generate revenue from redlight-cams, unreasonably slow speed limits on small towns whose main street IS the highway between 2 major cities, etc.

2) Even if we assume that MOST speed limits are not being set for revenue-generating purposes, they are clearly in many cases set at arbitrarily low numbers, with little regard being paid for actual safety. In fact, studies show that statistically, most drivers typically ignore the speed limit in the first place and simply drive at a speed that is dependent on the circumstances and visibility, etc. of the road in question, modifying their behavior at most only slightly in order to adhere to the posted speed limit. This tends to suggest that, in fact, most drivers drive with some measure of reasonable consideration for the fact that they oh, I don't know, what to get where they're going alive? Arbitrarily low speed limits do not, then, increase safety; they simply allow for more tickets and increase general frustration among drivers.

3) While I agree 110% with the concern about tailgating, lane hogging, weaving and etc., to lump speeding, which does not inherently imply dangerous or discourteous behavior, in with all these other offenses which necessarily contain one or both, is at best thoughtless on your part, and undermines your argument (which is itself stupid, but breaking down the reasons that the powers of the police need to be brought back into some semblance of sanity would require more effort than i care to put into this post).

Comment: Re:"supporting the government" (Score 1) 295

by JWallyR (#40081969) Attached to: Amazon Poised To Get Cut of CA Sales Taxes

paying taxes = being a slave

- only if you misquote me.

Income taxes are slavery, if you are going to quote me, quote me, don't make shit up. I know it sounds better for your ideology, when you make shit up, but you see, it doesn't help your argument. Do you even have an argument that is not made of straw?

Not being born as a slave into a system that automatically dedicates you as one.

Happy? Oh, and the pot calling the kettle black. Sheesh.

Comment: Re:Need for change... (Score 1) 1040

by JWallyR (#37996116) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Unity/Gnome 3/Win8/iOS — Do We Really Hate All New GUIs?

Apple decides the iOS experience should dominate the OSX world (Apple is a bit of a special case, they can pretty much do *anything* and their loyal userbase will lap it up, it's more like a fashion brand and they probably see minimal difference in business results between the times they truly deliver an enriching experience and when they make missteps).

Have you used a Mac or iOS device in the last 5 years?

There are plenty of very visible missteps in the Apple history books; the G4 cube for instance (although there are more "Top X things Apple did wrong" articles than you could shake a stick at). Apple appears to have learned from many of these mistakes and moved on. Your accusation that Mac OS X is changing in any material way to resemble iOS is particularly laughable... an App store being made available for Mac OS X doesn't indicate anything remotely on the scale of Microsoft building the next version of Windows around a touchscreen interface.

Then there's the typical "Apple customers are buying brand, not quality" that isn't really worth the time it takes to rebut. I buy Apple products because
1) Apple considers usability to be a priority, so I don't have to fight my computer to do things on it
2) Bang for buck- comparable hardware/software has only been available at comparable prices for the last 10 years (at least)
3) Service- On the rare instances in which I've had hardware issues, I have had parts replaced in and out of warranty with no hassle and often for free. I accidentally took my iPhone into the pool with me (left it in my swim trunk pockets like an idiot...), took it to the Apple store, was honest with them and they gave me a replacement, and all I had to do was sign a form documenting the exchange. Try that with Dell.

Comment: Re:OK, let the flame wars begin... (Score 1) 557

by JWallyR (#32369738) Attached to: Apple Surpasses Microsoft In Market Capitalization
How, exactly, has Apple "set back general purpose computing" at all, outside of your personal preference for a phone that you can tinker with? Because it's not as though Android devices aren't available, should you choose to purchase one. By contrast, Microsoft has, in every market in which it has participated in, tried to squelch actual competition rather than actually, you know, competing.

Just because many (most?) users prefer an appliance-style phone rather than a directly user-programmable phone doesn't mean Apple has done a damn thing to 'set back' anything other than the personal pride felt by many elitists on sites like this in having a 'better' device, measured in market penetration.

Seriously. Just because you don't like the iPhone doesn't mean that Apple is doing anything bad for the computer market.
The Courts

RIAA Confusion In Tenenbaum & Thomas Cases? 229

Posted by timothy
from the well-there-are-a-lot-of-names-yerhonor dept.
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "There seems to be a bit of confusion in RIAA-land these days, caused by the only 2 cases that ever went to trial, Capitol Records v. Thomas-Rasset in Minnesota, and SONY BMG Music Entertainment v. Tenenbaum, in Boston. In both cases, the RIAA has recently asked for extensions of time. In Thomas-Rasset, they've asked for more time to make up their mind as to whether to accept the reduced verdict of $54,000 the judge has offered them, and in Tenenbaum they've twice asked for more time to prepare their papers opposing Tenenbaum's motion for remittitur. What is more, it has been reported that after the reduction of the verdict, the RIAA offered to settle with Ms. Thomas-Rasset for $25,000, but she turned them down."
Biotech

Monitor Your Health 24x7 With the WIN Human Recorder 66

Posted by timothy
from the paranoia-count-high dept.
kkleiner writes "Japanese venture firm WIN Human Recorder Ltd is set to bring a health monitor patch to market that is capable of keeping tabs on all your vitals. The HRS-I is a small (30mm x 30mm x 5mm) lightweight (7g) device that adheres to your chest and relays the data it collects to a computer or mobile phone via wireless connection. While the HRS-I only directly monitors electrocardiograph information, body surface temperature, and movement (via accelerometers), it can connect to sensors for heart rate, brain waves, respiration and many other important health indicators. WIN is selling the HRS-I for around ¥30,000 (~$330) and providing monitoring software for around ¥10,000 (~$110)."

Comment: Re:Dangerous reading. (Score -1, Troll) 464

by JWallyR (#29339905) Attached to: Church of Scientology Proposes Net Censorship In Australia
If only I had mod points to mod you down.

You simply have no idea at all what you're talking about with respect to Christianity. If you are of the serious opinion that Christianity is all about 'control' and manipulation of emotions to enforce this control, it simply means that you have done zero research on the Bible itself, as opposed to basing the entirety of your ill-informed opinion on the Catholic church (which is what Christianity looks like when wrapped up in a cult-flavored candy shell).

But then, it's always easier to post baseless religion-bashing drivel in a discussion like this, because it's popular to do so, and provides a venue for the anti-religious to pat each other on the back for being so much 'smarter' (and therefore 'better') than us gullible idiots who have 'succumbed' to the 'control' of a religious philosophy.

Because "Do unto your neighbor as you would have him do unto you" is about 'control'.

>_>
_

Comment: Re:Great news! (Score 1) 341

by JWallyR (#28797143) Attached to: Windows 7 Hits RTM At Build 7600.16385
Parent = flamebait.

It's well-known that Apple's RAM upgrades and similar stuff is overpriced, but the baseline models are in almost all cases at the same or only slightly higher prices when you're comparing comparably specced machines. Extra goodies people may or may not want to buy are really irrelevant- show me a major manufacturer in ANY industry that doesn't attempt to make it easy to buy extra 'on-brand' items to help their bottom line, and I'll be impressed by a link accusing Apple of gouging their customers.

Fun as it is to flame Apple, their merchandise is a reliably good value within any of the market segments they choose to serve, and the 'lol twice the price noob' myth has been debunked for years. Can we get past it yet?

Comment: Re:Adult Gaming? Hah! (Score 1) 343

by JWallyR (#27919237) Attached to: On the Advent of Controversial Video Games

so, politicians who avail themselves of prostitutes or drugs are still juvenile?

In short, yes. Relying on drugs as a replacement for a fulfilling life is the refuge of an immature mind, as is the use of a prostitute as a surrogate for sex in the context of a meaningful relationship.

I'm not sure if you were *trying* to give a perfect example of what the GP was talking about, but you did a bang-up job!

Comment: Re:Dear Iranian nation (Score 1) 923

by JWallyR (#26717769) Attached to: Iran Has Put a Satellite Into Orbit
Additionally, if one looks at the link posted by Black Sabbath, the entirety of it is nit-picking over different translations of speeches made by the President of Iran, all of which appear to be deliberately vague in the first place!

I mean, Imagine that, translators trying to make sense of deliberately vague wording will attempt to structure their translations in an effort to make the meaning more clear for their audience!

The actual text of the speeches itself is a lot more vague and yet sinister. For example:

Our dear Imam said that the occupying regime must be wiped off the map and this was a very wise statement. We cannot compromise over the issue of Palestine. Is it possible to create a new front in the heart of an old front. This would be a defeat and whoever accepts the legitimacy of this regime [Israel] has in fact, signed the defeat of the Islamic world. Our dear Imam targeted the heart of the world oppressor in his struggle, meaning the occupying regime. I have no doubt that the new wave that has started in Palestine, and we witness it in the Islamic world too, will eliminate this disgraceful stain from the Islamic world.

Why is the mere existence of Israel a threat to the Islamic world? Aside from the easy-to-google statements of all sorts of supposed (and unsubstantiated) "Zionist conquest plans" by Islamic haters of Israel, is there any reason to believe that Israel cannot coexist with the "Islamic world" aside from the Islamic world's stated interest in destroying Israel?

"'Tis true, 'tis pity, and pity 'tis 'tis true." -- Poloniouius, in Willie the Shake's _Hamlet, Prince of Darkness_

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