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Comment Good luck with that (Score 1) 319

This is why you go to school and get a good education, so you can get a job that can't be replaced by a robot.

To paraphrase a line from The Incredibles, "When everyone is college educated - no one will be."

I'm not exactly thrilled at the prospect of living in a world where you'll need a 4 year college degree to bag groceries, because everyone in the transportation industry was put out of work by self-driving vehicles and drones. From the looks of things, we're not even that far off.

Comment Re:The fence's warehouse (Score 1) 205

Much as a Fencing operation or a chop shop might occupy similar premises to legitimate businesses?

Bad analogy. A fencing operation or chop shop is taking possession of stolen property and re-selling it. It was more like Megaupload was a strip mall and they leased out space to legitimate businesses and a few chop shops.

eBay essentially gets away with the same thing (and takes 10% on each sale). You don't honestly think all these iPhones are from people who just forgot their iCloud password, do you?

Comment Re:Hmmm (Score 5, Interesting) 205

Were you born a criminal sociopath and con-artist, or did you evolve into one?

You may personally dislike the guy, but running a public cloud storage service isn't supposed to be illegal. The service had substantial, non-infringing uses, which was previously the litmus test for whether a product exists solely to enable copyright infringement. Otherwise, we wouldn't have things like photocopiers, tape recorders, MP3 players, VCRs, DVRs, cameras, and pretty much every form of blank media.

Megaupload was used quite extensively for storing open source projects and homebrew Android ROMs. That alone should've demonstrated the service had substantial, non-infringing uses.

I understand that Megaupload was allegedly not acting on DMCA takedown requests as promptly as they should've. Still, that seems like something that should be handled with fines, not going all Gestapo by seizing the domain and servers. You wouldn't torch a restaurant to the ground for failing a health inspection, would you?

Comment Who is your ISP? (Score 1) 160

Chances are, your cable company and your ISP are one and the same. I have Earthlink through Brighthouse and they just raised the bill by $2 last month. It's now up to $45.95/mo, for 15Mbps down/1Mbps up. It seems the more people cut cords, the more the cable companies will push back by raising prices on "Internet only" service. I'd be thrilled to tell them where to stick it and switch to a less expensive competitor, except there isn't one. AT&T is the only other local broadband provider (very slow DSL) and their limited-time promotional rate only applies if you're signing up for bundled services.

It's foolish to think cable companies are just going to roll over and get used to lower profits. I'll bet a couple years from now, we'll all be paying about $90-$120 just for broadband and then paying Netflix/Amazon/Apple for TV service. We'll reminiscence about the good ol' days when that amount of money used to buy broadband access and cable TV service!

Comment Re:What? (Score 5, Insightful) 133

He bought something he doesn't know what ELSE to do with. But fine, be a jackass.

I've seen some idiotic "Ask Slashdot" stories, but this one probably takes the cake. To use the ever-popular car analogy, it's like asking "I just realized my car has a 12 volt electrical receptacle in the dashboard, what sort of things can I plug in?"

Yet another "Ask Slashdot" that can easily be solved by Google.

Comment Re:Doesn't get it (Score 1) 306

Why does this come up in every discussion?

Programming is not special. It does not require a "special mind" or other magical in-born trait.

Perhaps not, but it does require a certain mental disposition to enjoy (or at least tolerate) as a career. Most people simply don't want to spend 40+ hours per week, sitting at a desk, staring at code on a computer screen.

Comment Re:I call shenanigans... (Score 2) 446

Why would *anyone* encourage their child, regardless of gender, to spend a decade or more training for what is quickly becoming a minimum-wage job at best.


Coding jobs can be easily outsourced to wherever the going rate for labor is cheapest. Google's "coder shortage" seems completely imaginary. They're an advertising company whose greatest trick was convincing the world they are a software company.

Comment Why bother? (Score 1) 313

Really, the only advantage to a dumphone is the inexpensive cost to replace it, should it become lost or broken. Most non-contract wireless providers with a "bring your own phone" option are perfectly happy letting you use a cheap plan on a modern flagship smartphone, so being a Luddite won't save you much on your monthly wireless bill.

Regarding battery life, the main reason smartphones don't have the endurance of dumbphones comes down to how people use them. If you turn off mobile data, WiFi, Bluetooth and background app refresh, even an iPhone 5 can go a week on standby. You could also just buy an extended battery, portable USB pack, car charger, solar charger, etc.

I suspect this is more about longing for the "good old days" when people didn't expect you to be reachable through e-mail and at least 3 different social networks. Sorry, but using a dumbphone won't bring those days back.

Comment Re:Markets, not people (Score 2) 615

Next thing you know, they might develop big machines to replace covered wagons and plows. Then where will we be, when all those teamsters and farmers are put out of work?

It actually is pretty tough to make a living as a small farmer these days.

A functioning society requires jobs that pay a livable wage to people who, for whatever reason, aren't cut out for collage. These are the jobs that are rapidly vanishing, due to automation.

The industrial revolution brought high atmospheric CO2 levels, the likes of which haven't been seen on this planet in over 20 million years. There's no avoiding it, "progress" always comes at a cost.

Comment Move over swatting, here comes Yik Yakking (Score 1) 254

If the police are actually responding to crap on Yik Yak, it won't be long before someone gets their jollies sending the police on wild goose chases. Of course, it isn't like it's easy to pick up a cheap burner phone, hop on an unsecured WiFi network and fake the phone's location. Whoops.

"Tomorrow at noon this place burns to the ground. I'll be driving a hot pink Tesla Model S, come at me, pigs."

Amusement worthy of 4chan ensues.

Comment Re:Gamechanger (Score 1) 514

Don't get me wrong, I would LOVE to put solar panels on my house and stick it to the man and all. I just don't happen to have $30K laying around.

If you have access to grid power, photovoltaics are just a piss poor investment. Sure, there's the "going green" aspect of it, but ultimately it's still just an investment - you're spending money now in the hope of making more of it back over a period of time. You'll likely do better investing the same amount of money in the stock market and leave the electricity generation to the people with the big cooling towers.

Comment Re:What is the obsession with tattoos... (Score 1) 403

Perhaps it is just the way my brain is wired, when I see a tattoo my brain instinctively registers it as "damage" and that the person may be injured or ill. Certainly others must have the same instinctive reaction, yet it seems even more people are doing that these days.

Trypophobia is a real thing, so it isn't far off to imagine the sight of a tattoo evoking a similar reaction in some people.

Comment Re:Not every tattoo (Score 1) 403

Not all tattoo inks are created equal. Many practitioners use ink from botanical sources.

Obviously, non-GMO botanical sources, otherwise they're not hipster enough.

Somewhere at a Chipotle, there's a hipster who can't order his non-GMO burrito with his Apple watch, because his tattoo is interfering with the security features. Oh, the irony.

"People should have access to the data which you have about them. There should be a process for them to challenge any inaccuracies." -- Arthur Miller