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Comment Re:A free search engine (Score 3, Insightful) 152

That's the thing, though. Lots of people use Google, it's true, because it provides the best search results. However, the cost of entry to using another search engine is zero. This isn't like a company that is so expansive that it can keep the prices on a product very low, preventing another company from being able to enter the market.

The cost of entering the search engine market is also very low. You just need someone smart and innovative to build a better algorithm, then some money to buy the server space somewhere.

The cost of entry is low. The cost of switching to another product is zero. Google is the dominant product, but not because it is maliciously destroying all other alternatives.

I'm also not convinced that listing one's own products first is abusive in any way. Google doesn't prevent other services from being listed. Heck, when I search for "free email" I see providers I've never heard of before (GMX,, and a few articles about free email services. That looks like a lot of options to me.

As far as I can tell this is just another attempt by a government to squeeze money out of something simply because they can. Google will sigh, roll its eyes, and pay out whatever the government wants because - wait - it doesn't have any choice but to pay that entry fee, otherwise it cannot operate there.

Which organization holds monopolistic power again?

Comment No Teaching Experience? (Score 4, Interesting) 64

I'm not sure that is a great idea. Some people are great at teaching, others are not. Someone with no teaching experience has a good probability of being on the "not" side. Even people WITH teaching experience are often poor teachers.

My concern with this is that you'll get someone with no experience that is also a poor teacher, and that person will turn the kids off to what could be an interesting field of study.

Comment Re:What's with all the awkward systemd command nam (Score 2, Interesting) 744

I'm alright with commands that have longer names. It's harder to mis-type and execute the wrong thing, and it's easier to know what is going on at a glance.

Same thing when reading code. I'd much rather work with code that has a method named getUserByGuid(), for example, than gubg().

Besides, nothing prevents you from aliasing the longer commands to something shorter if you so choose.

There's a lot of things about systemd that turn me off, but commands with longer, more verbose names is not one of those things.

Comment Re:This is Important to Discuss (Score 1) 68

This is a serious concern as well.

The government is, by its very nature, a political animal and has recent events have shown, the People In Power will use the government to target dissenters. The IRS is a perfect example of this (and the use of the IRS as a weapon goes far beyond the targeting of conservative groups from a few years ago). Combined with the extensive data mining and collection the Alphabet Soup is allowed to do (or does anyway, even if it isn't technically allowed to do so), the government is in an amazing position to attack its own citizens.

I know that people say, "Oh, it will never happen," but it already has. Woodrow Wilson signed the Sedition Act of 1918, which forbade the use of "disloyal, profane, scurrilous, or abusive language" about the United States government. Let us also not forget the internment of Japanese citizens during World War II, executed by FDR.

Complete violations of the First and Fourth amendments - but they happened anyway.

The next time these things happen the result will be far worse because of the collection capabilities.

Comment Re:This is Important to Discuss (Score 2) 68

It only has impact if the politicians decide that it should have impact. Since they don't care, it is a waste of time. There is zero consequence for them when they ignore high profile petitions. This is great for them, because they can simply ignore anything inconvenient or uncomfortable, and then pounce on something that will give them some easy PR points.

The only tool that we have that politicians respond to is the election process. That, aside from the rare criminal investigation, is the only way we can provide politicians with a consequence for their decisions. We can write our representatives, we can call them, we can protest them, we can decide to donate, or not donate, to their campaigns, but none of that actually matters. Only the voting booth matters.

Of course, it doesn't help that the people using the site submit and upvote ridiculous petitions like building the Death Star. If YOU can't take the system seriously, why would THEY take it seriously?

Comment Re:I call bullshit (Score 1) 676

Then you're wrong, unfortunately. Information is classified by the contents of the information. If something is top secret information, for example, then it is top secret simply by the virtue of what the information is, not because someone has marked a specific document as such.

Source: Buck Sexton, a former CIA operative.

If things worked the way you described, then I could take a copy of the nuclear launch codes and print them in the NY Times. Then I could say, "But the NY Times doesn't say TOP SECRET on it, so the information isn't classified!"

That is, in effect, the defense Hillary is trying to use. It defies all logic and is factually incorrect.

That isn't the only problem, of course. Providing these USB drives to her lawyer, who is not allowed to access that information, is also a crime.

Then there's the "I only used that mail server for personal use, not for official business" lie.

And there's more on top of it all.

You can love Hillary and her policies as much as you want, that's totally up to you, but you cannot defend her in this instance and be intellectually honest at the same time. It has been proven that she has lied, repeatedly.

If it wasn't for Newton, we wouldn't have to eat bruised apples.