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Comment: Re:Flash panic (Score 1) 87

by DerekLyons (#47554353) Attached to: OKCupid Experiments on Users Too

When we (academics) do experiments on people however trivial we usually have to go through ethical clearance, get informed consent etc. I think its skipping that part that people are uncomfortable about.

The operative word being "usually", which implies there exist cases where you don't. The discomfort come from people not grasping the existence of the "usually", and that businesses are not academics and product testing is not held to the same standard.

Comment: Re:Can we just recognize it as currency and be don (Score 0) 133

by DerekLyons (#47554241) Attached to: US States Edge Toward Cryptocoin Regulation

Ask yourself what backs the value of UPS shipping labels, that people are willing to give substantial sums to obtain one? Intrinsically the label is just sticky paper with some printing on it. The answer is the UPS network of trucks and distribution terminals. They enable a package with a label on it to get from one place to another.

In a similar way, the Bitcoin network of p2p nodes, mining hardware, desktop apps, merchants accepting it, and user wallets enable moving money from one place to another.

In other words, Bitcoin is precisely what I said - a medium of exchange, a coupon, a token, not a currency.

The network makes bitcoin balances useful, and therefore have value.

So? Having value [being useful] does not equate to having value [monetary worth]. They're two different things, though I can see why BTC fanboys would like to obscure the existence of that distinction - because it's existence demolishes their entire theory.

As to the balance of your reply, it's just more of the same... handwaving, smokescreens, and you using words that don't mean what you think they do.

Comment: Re:Can we just recognize it as currency and be don (Score 1) 133

by DerekLyons (#47553615) Attached to: US States Edge Toward Cryptocoin Regulation

This is always the crux of the Great Bitcoin Debate.

No it's not, because it's no more something that can be debated than whether or not the sun rises in the East in the morning. You can't debate facts.
The rest of your post is just more of the same - smoke and irrelevant mirrors.

Comment: Re:Can we just recognize it as currency and be don (Score 2) 133

by DerekLyons (#47552201) Attached to: US States Edge Toward Cryptocoin Regulation

So... can we just formally decree that cryptocoins meet the definition of a "currency", and be done with it?

I certainly hope not, because ultimately they're completely unlike other foreign or domestic currencies in that they have nothing backing their worth*. They're much more like coupons, casino tokens, or tasting tokens at a beer festival than real money. They're a medium of exchange not a store of value. The flaw in the logic behind cryptocurrencies is that their inventors and proponents fail to recognize this.
* Generally the economy of the issuing country.

Comment: Re:The only good thing (Score 1) 430

by LWATCDR (#47549537) Attached to: Suddenly Visible: Illicit Drugs As Part of Silicon Valley Culture

Only on Slashdot would some one compare heroin to alcohol and tobacco.
The difference is that you can use alcohol and not be addicted. Tobacco while really bad does not seem to cause health issues as quickly as heroin.
I don't drink or smoke and even I can see a world of difference between them.
BTW Drunks do often get thrown in jail for any number of reasons. Drug users often get off with community service and drug treatment programs for first offenses.

Comment: Re:Money - the ultimate natural selector (Score 1, Insightful) 430

I have worked directly with CEO's in the past, when they are doing leisure they are still working. Their phone will go off all times of day.
So he may be on a Yacht, he was probably still working there.

The issue with drugs is it gives people an unfair advantage. At the cost of their long term health. If you are in an environment where everyone else is working 80+ hours per week, you need to in order to not look like a lazy employee dragging everyone down.

Comment: Re:Simple, block all ads (Score 1) 95

It seems that a lot of internet companies make their money from adds. If this buisness model was so bad it would have stopped decades ago.

So how do you propose web sites to be funded. People don't like a pay wall, ISP will not pay you for their customers visit. If your site doesn't meet the need for the greater common good then you probably won't have the government or some other large grant funding you. However you have costs to pay for. The add model is the best we can get unless you know of some superior buisness model.

Comment: Re: Or maybe you're not so good at math (Score 2) 484

The problem is that we gave Israel a barren land with indefensible borders. Then we complained when they took action to assert themselves. It's like boasting that you gave someone a dilapidated house, then criticize them for cutting down the vines choking it, and for making too much noise sawing and hammering.

Consultants are mystical people who ask a company for a number and then give it back to them.