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Comment Look at past innovations (Score 3, Insightful) 263

The automobile was more convenient than owning a horse. MP3 is more convenient than dealing with CDs. Try actually using cryptocurrency and it rapidly becomes apparent that it's far simpler just to whip out your credit/debit card, or good old cash. If you're buying something online, PayPal's more or less got your back if the seller screws you over. Ordered an iPhone and received this instead? File a claim.

The only reason anyone bothers with Bitcoin is because they believe a bigger fool will buy the Bitcoins off of them at a later date, or because they're buying things (contraband merchandise) that they don't want legitimate payment processors knowing about. Most legitimate businesses that accept Bitcoin simply use a payment processor that immediately exchanges the Bitcoins for cash, and generally you're the one eating the transaction fees on both ends (unless you get lucky and Bitcoin fluctuates up in the time since you exchanged cash for your Bitcoins).

If you really want to live in the brave new world of electronic payments, get a phone with NFC and try using that for awhile. You'll quickly discover it's still more convenient to use a form of payment that's accepted everywhere (cash, credit/debit), rather than remembering which merchants have functional NFC equipment and fumbling with your phone.

Comment Re:Not a big deal (Score 1) 222

So being a cheater yourself, tell us what the fuck inspires you. It's a game, what possible enjoyment is there in cheating to win? why play at all?

Some people don't have the time to invest in practicing. You're working 40+ hour weeks and could be playing against prepubescent twerps who spend every waking moment on the game. Even game developers have realized this and added pay-to-win shit to some games. Grind or spend, baby.

I never really got into any of the online MMO or FPS games, but I do play Angry Birds 2 once in awhile on my phone. I've got a hack for unlimited in-game currency, and it gives a bit of an advantage in the multiplayer "arena", since I can play every battle with all the premium power-ups. Of course, this isn't really a cheating hack, since Donald Trump could easily do the same thing, if he traded his presidential ambitions for an Angry Birds addiction.

Comment Re:Apple doesn't need a killer device. (Score 1) 428

Most people buy their phones through a contract, which means that even if iPhones are more expensive, they are quite affordable over 18 months

Thanks to T-Mobile's success in using newspeak to convince the public that subsidized phone contracts are pure Satan-piss evil, the major carriers in the US have all pretty much switched to a model where wireless service is sold on a "no contract" basis, but you finance the full cost of your phone.

Under the previous, 2 year contract arrangement, you'd pay the same for your wireless service whether you opted for the $0 Huawei Dolphin Fart Pro running Froyo, or the "$199" iPhone du jour. Might as well get the iPhone. However, now that carriers expect you to finance the full cost of your phone, there's some serious money to be saved going with a Moto G, ZTE Zmax 2, Blu Vivo XL, etc. All of those phones cost under $200.

Apple is certainly not doomed, but their glory days of iPhones flying off the shelves might be behind them.

Comment Re:It was the first standard for video? (Score 1) 406

When szczys said "video" szczys meant porn. VGA was the first standard that allowed users to watch downloaded porn that was as good as what they could watch on videotapes.

CGA, EGA, MDA and Hercules couldn't equal a videotape.... and PCs didn't come equipped with NTSC, PAL or SECAM.

You couldn't actually watch VHS quality video on a PC until circa 1995. Even then, you needed a video card with a dedicated MPEG decoder, or at least a Pentium 90MHz (that's 0.09GHz for you younger millennials) CPU and a video card that supported video overlay acceleration (if you wanted to watch it full screen without it getting choppy). But your bigger problem would have been the lack of broadband access - at the time, even AOL was still charging by the hour, for dial-up.

VGA, as it existed when it superseded EGA - well, it was good for looking at pixelated 256 color still images. Magazines (images and words printed on processed dead trees, don't see them much these days) still had the advantage when it came to clarity of what you were looking at.

Comment It's worse than that. (Score 1) 276

Truck drivers. There sure are a lot of them in the US.

Not just truck drivers - any job that involves moving someone or something from point A to point B with a human behind the wheel is a target for elimination. For the most part, a job in the transportation industry pays a livable wage. If transportation jobs are rendered obsolete by autonomous vehicles, we're talking a mind-mindbogglingly huge number of workers who will have to retrain for another career, or fight for the remaining low-wage jobs that are available to unskilled workers.

As much as politicians love scaring the American public with the specter of terrorism, it's the dropping value of an hour of unskilled human labor which should really be sending chills down peoples' spines. The point some members of the liberal camp fail to see is "minimum wage", is a misnomer. It's a minimum cost of labor, and raising it is akin to price fixing a commodity that is in obvious oversupply. Some municipalities have already done just that. Allow that to sink in: We have so many unskilled laborers willing to work for unlivable wages, that we've actually had to pass laws mandating they're paid more than the free market can bear.

Star Trek and and the Spaceship Earth attraction at EPCOT told us automation would provide us with a life of leisure, while we're free to pursue our dreams. You'd spend the day composing music, designing surfboards, painting, etc., while Mr. Roboto goes to work for you. In the real world though, Mr. Roboto works for the big corporations, and they see no need to employ *you*.

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.

This.

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.

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