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Comment: Re:Buffet vs. A La Carte (Score 3, Interesting) 349

by Penguinisto (#47408939) Attached to: Here Comes the Panopticon: Insurance Companies

I might be more conscious about that cost and decide to not eat any than if that cost were figured in and distributed among all users buffet-style.

You assume that these companies would operate on objective and reasonable standards - that's so cute...

No, really, it is. Remember when everyone said that butter was bad for you and you had to eat margarine instead? Now it's the other way 'round (or looking to go that way). So - how would you feel about having to pay for all those times you bought real butter all those years?

Oh, even better - let's talk diets! Not like recommendations for those don't ever change from, say, the old four food groups to pyramid to tetrahedron, to... - oh, wait.

No thanks - I prefer to not put my eating habits and health in the hands of some corporate asshats.

Mind you, I'm 6' tall and weigh 170 lbs, and I play outdoors for fun. I also eat good food in moderation, but occasionally I love a big steak or a big ol' bowl of ice cream. This brings up another thing - no two people are alike. Some can wolf down a metric ton of crap food (I used to) with no ill effects, but you want them to be lumped in with a bunch of folks who gain 15 lbs just from the mere scent of caramel candy? Screw that.

Comment: Re:Kind of like supermarket loyalty schemes (Score 1) 349

by Penguinisto (#47408855) Attached to: Here Comes the Panopticon: Insurance Companies

Funny indeed - it's drop-easy to fake out a supermarket club card.

Driver's license details and SSN on the other hand? Well, not so easy to fake (unless you're an illegal alien, I guess).

(I know, I know - in most states you don't have to update your DL info when you move, but in Oregon you're required to update your DL address within 30 days of moving, or you face a rather huge fine in addition to any other citations, should the cop discover that you haven't done so.)

Comment: Re:Kind of like supermarket loyalty schemes (Score 1, Troll) 349

by Penguinisto (#47408825) Attached to: Here Comes the Panopticon: Insurance Companies

It's the perfect libertarian excuse for corporate abuse.

Bullshit. Auto and Health insurance are now mandatory by force of law. That is where abuse comes in. A free market (without the coercion-by-government) would have insurance companies charging lower premiums for two reasons; first, because competition would kick in to keep prices low, and second, they would do so knowing that w/o the force of law, individuals wouldn't have to buy their products in the first place.

So no - auto and health insurance are no longer "free" markets in the true sense - governments (federal for the latter, state for the former) have made damn certain of that.

Comment: It's already going on... (Score 4, Insightful) 349

by Penguinisto (#47408753) Attached to: Here Comes the Panopticon: Insurance Companies

...ever put in that car insurance fob into your auto's computer port? (e.g. Progressive's Snapshot, where they treat it as a cute little device that aggressively records everything your car is doing when you drive.) People (not corporations, *individuals*) go out of their way to use these stupid things, not fully realizing (or caring) that they're willingly allowing an insurance company to monitor everything they do.

But you know, it's okay because they get a discount and it's not the government doing it (*eyeroll*).

In all seriousness, if you want to whore yourself out for "discounts", I'd normally say that's your problem, not mine - but then I realize that the rest of us will get dinged for NOT opting-in, so damnit, stop that you idiots!

Comment: Re:Power? We dont need no stink'n power! (Score 1) 464

They don't depend on looking out the window to fly.

...they do however need visual in order to land. Guidance tools like ILS (Instrument Landing System) only gets them to the right glide-slope and direction for the runway... it won't get them on the thing.

Comment: Re: Failsafe? (Score 5, Informative) 464

If the system is down so far as needing that, then it's already crashing i'd suspect.

Not necessarily.

Even 'fly-by-wire' systems are always at least dual-redundant (quad-redundant if it's a military jet), and it *always* has a source of backup power (EPU/APU, batteries, etc).

These screens we don't know about, and always have a single-point of failure: the screen itself. So if power dies off, at least with glass windows, the pilots can still see out and glide to a 'dead-stick' landing (even if it's not on a runway) using the backup power to the flight controls.

Comment: Re:One non-disturbing theory (Score 4, Interesting) 304

by Penguinisto (#47354517) Attached to: Ninety-Nine Percent of the Ocean's Plastic Is Missing

...given that the bottled water aisle of my grocery store strongly suggests that water is a little less ultimate than you imply.

Funny you should mention that, because the reason most bottled water has an expiration date isn't that water goes bad, but because the plastics' volatile components in the bottle leach into the water (which is why everyone freaked out over BPE's awhile back).

Another theory? stuff clings to the plastic and sinks it. Having lived on the Oregon coast, I found it rather rare that something would wash up on the shore which didn't carry barnacles, seaweed, algae, and other stuff that clung to it - all of it using the bit of flotsam as a miniature base of operations from which to spend one's lifespan. Eventually so much stuff clings to it that any buoyancy the plastic once had is negated by the weight of the lifeforms and suchlike clinging to it.

Hell, even a sealed glass bottle eventually does this, as algae sticks to outside of it, which in turn attracts sand... the stuff dries like glue, BTW.

One other reason I can think of, speaking of which - did they account for all the stuff that eventually washes up on shore somewhere? I suspect they had to have, but maybe they underestimated it?

An adequate bootstrap is a contradiction in terms.