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Comment: Re:Administrators (Score 1) 538

by Lord Dreamshaper (#47291365) Attached to: Teaching College Is No Longer a Middle Class Job
They will respond to a downswing in demand as well

Sure, all that money rolling in from tuition? They'll happily kiss it goodbye if demand drops for whatever reason. Whether university employees can privately justify their positions and salaries or not, their income and lifestyles are on the line. They will promote any logic that encourages more students & higher tuition, same as any other business. Like any other market, they will insist on inflating the bubble until it bursts, even if moderation could have prevented it from bursting in the first place (not that a bubble burst can necessarily be avoided in this case).

Comment: Re:Exactly. 78k is luxury territory (Score 1) 303

by Lord Dreamshaper (#41861999) Attached to: Tesla Model S Named 'Car of the Year'
My job requires a car. My priority is to buy as small a car as I can (still need to fit wife and kids and groceries after work) with an emphasis on fuel-efficiency. Then I drive the snot out of it for as many years as I can until it's not worth maintaining or reselling. Lather, rinse, repeat.

For what I spend on gas, over the typical lifetime of my vehicles, the huge purchase price is almost negated by the lack of gas bills. Only the annual trip to and from the inlaws would be cumbersome as I would apparently need 2 one-hour stops to recharge, one of which would be a meal break anyway.

tl; dr: If forced to, I could live with the pricing now for luxury I don't want; if they could afford to create a comparable middle-class version, it would be a no-brainer for me and I'd buy one *right now*.

Comment: Re:4th Amendment less than Lessened Expectations (Score 2) 62

by Lord Dreamshaper (#41791027) Attached to: Secret Stingray Warrantless Cellphone Tracking
Can't find a link, but 15-20 years ago, Ontario courts ruled that banging your girlfriend in the backseat of a car wasn't public indecency (or whatever else they would charge with for doing it in public, say in the middle of a downtown park), if you were parked somewhere secluded. The ruling went that you had reasonable expectation of privacy by parking somewhere secluded, therefore you weren't accountable if you happened to get busted anyway.

Mentioning this to contrast with SCOTUS ruling people in cars have less expectation of privacy. Likewise, whether I'm whispering in low tones into my cellphone in a crowded room or whether I'm talking normally on my phone with no one visible around me, I expect my conversations to be private and not intercepted in anyway without a warrant.

Comment: I think I've commented before, but it applies here (Score 1) 354

by Lord Dreamshaper (#40026641) Attached to: Wil Wheaton: BitTorrent Isn't Only For Piracy
I don't watch much TV. The few shows I do watch, I'm more likely to watch online at my convenience, as I'm usually busy having a life during Prime Time viewing hours. When I was into watching '24' they would show a 30-second online ad at the regular commercial breaks. Guaranteed I watched every one of them, because where am I going to go in 30 seconds? If I actually had to go to the bathroom or the kitchen, I'd pause the show meaning I'd still end up watching the ads.

The point is that the advertisers *easily* got more bang for their buck by making me watch 30s of ads at every break online, than giving me 2-3 mins to leave the room for regular broadcast commercial breaks. i should still be able to download the shows for my convenience *especially* if the ads are now essentially unavoidable (not skippable), and the advertisers (hence the media companies) would get far more value than clinging to old business models.

Comment: undefended copyright... (Score 0) 168

assume for a second that they have a valid copyright claim; I mean they created it, and, utltimately, it is only of significance to us if we are using their services. i mean who adds a postal code to an envelope they plan to deliver by hand?

how often have you seen postal codes being distributed? every advertisement (print, televeision, radio, etc), contact info page of every website, every form you fill out with personal information...how many instances is that? thousands? more likely millions? Now how many have been sued for publication of copyrighted information?

None.

Now that someone is directly monetizing that information, Canada Post wants to play the copyright right card, but the horse has left the barn. For better or worse, they have to show that they've always vigourously defended their copyrights in the past, otherwise it's fair game like Aspirin or Kleenex. I'm not a fan of that aspect of law, but it is what it is and Canada Post is too late to the copyright game.

Hell, try mailing something by courier and you still need a postal code. That's as direct a competition as you can get; the most immediate example of copyright violation, but I don't think they've ever sued FedEx (Purolator is partially or wholly owned by Canada Post, so I've heard, so maybe they can use postal codes), so going after Geolytica seems a stretch.

Comment: Re:Reality check (Score 1) 533

by Lord Dreamshaper (#39575325) Attached to: Canadians Protest Wind Turbines
I understand NIMBY, but that's a small-scale (one neighbourhood, maybe even just one household) concern, compared to the large-scale concern of cumulative effects and damage caused by fossil fuel extracting & consuming. Personally, I'd much rather have a windfarm in my backyard, than an oil drill, a mine or even a garbage dump, but that's small consolation if you have the chance to have none of the above.

When windfarms are everywhere and every size (small ones on your roof for personal wind harvesting?) will we even notice them? If we went back a cenutry or so we'd start screaming about not having any of those damn phone poles & street lights lining the streets blocking our views, ruining our property values and causing measles, mumps, tuberculosis & whatever else scared us back then.

We wouldn't necessarily miss them now if they disappeared, but we'd probably find the view as bizarre *without* them, as we do the view *with* giant windmills. Our kids won't understand what the big deal was.

Comment: Flip side... (Score 3, Interesting) 361

by Lord Dreamshaper (#38483128) Attached to: What Do We Do When the Internet Mob Is Wrong?
Flip side of the coin is the "old guard" burying stories because it doesn't serve their corporate masters and/or because the truth about a news story isn't sensational or lurid enough. Old journalism used to be relatively honest, because lets face it, there's always been plenty of corrupt/stupid/greedy corporations/politicians/public figures, and exposing them was sensational enough to sell copy without sacrificing integrity. That integrity can no longer be assumed and so "old" journalism has just as much upside & downside as "new" journalism. It's up to us to learn to separate the signal from noise when the name of the game is to bury us in noise.

Comment: police state (Score 3, Insightful) 238

by Lord Dreamshaper (#37712722) Attached to: Look Ma, I'm Getting Arrested!
regardless of where you stand on any of the issues or what you think about any protests and protesters, whether you think all police are jackbooted thugs or are paragons of virtue, or (more realistically) somewhere in between, the fact that there is a (perceived or actual) need for this app is an incredibly sad comment on our times

Comment: Re:What is this? (Score 1) 342

by Lord Dreamshaper (#36560504) Attached to: US ISPs, Big Content Reaching Antipiracy Agreement
sure, but if you've signed a contract that has such vague terms in it (so that the judge doesn't summarily rule in your favour) that they *might* legally be able to cap you, turn you over to the MAFIAA, disconnected you, kill you with bogus surcharges, or whatever, then the burden will be on you to take them and possibly the MAFIAA on in court. Are you really going to spend that kinda money just to lose and switch to another carrier that will do exactly the same thing?

United we stand, divided we fall, etc, etc, but the little guys don't even get any real satisfaction if the actually manage to win a class action suit, only the lawyers do.

Comment: Re:What is this? (Score 1) 342

by Lord Dreamshaper (#36558094) Attached to: US ISPs, Big Content Reaching Antipiracy Agreement
How can a company amend/break their contract with a customer based solely on the word of some third party? With no due process, or anything of the sort?

Because they're not breaking their contract with you if they have some vaguely worded clause to the effect they can throttle you at their discretion for "better network management" or somesuch.

For the "greater good" of their network, all those greedy bandwidth hogs who have the nerve to make full use of the pipeline they paid for will be blacklisted; if that just "happens" to appease the MAFIAA for alleged IP violations, well isn't that a happy coincidence?

"It's curtains for you, Mighty Mouse! This gun is so futuristic that even *I* don't know how it works!" -- from Ralph Bakshi's Mighty Mouse

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