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Comment You're living in the right century for this. (Score 3, Informative) 149

The Digital Command Control (DCC) standard has made operation and control of hobby trains more realistic and allows for much better computer control and sensing of layouts.
Of course, it also adds cost to what already can be an expensive hobby, but just being able to run two trains on a single track without a collision is pretty cool.

Comment Diminishing returns... (Score 1) 133

Older smartphones don't have enough available memory to host the apps released today. Chrome simply won't run right, or even fit on an 8 MB phone, with Cyanogenmod installed and all vendor crap removed.
If you want to do the right thing, donate the phones to any of the countless charities that accept them, take a tax deduction, and donate that amount to another charity.
Making them work for the intended purpose is their problem.
Wipe it (all phones have a factory reset option), remove the SIM, and mail it off.

Comment Re:Adding insult... (Score 1) 85

This is exactly what happened to me, due to the Anthem breach.
Here's a hint: call the IRS at exactly 0800 ET, when the lines open. I waited on hold for about 2 minutes, and it took approximately 45 minutes to complete the process.
NOTE: Check your junk mail carefully. I detected the fraud because a 'Green Dot' prepaid debit card arrived in the mail. The fraudster had purchased a generic card retail with $10 loaded on it, as the IRS, in their infinite wisdom, accepts these accounts for refund payments.
It was registered with my name and address, so Green Dot "helpfully" sent me a personalized card.
I froze the card, but the fraudulent return had already been filed. Fortunately, the IRS was unable to make the (fraudulent) refund payment to the (now frozen) debit card (and even helpfully sent a letter about it). So I screwed the fraudster out of $10.
I've been told I might see my (legitimate) refund in 6 months.

Comment Re:Get ready for metered service (Score 1) 631

The dial-up that I used did not have limits.

I'm going to assume here that was after 1982, when AT&T was broken up. Before that time there was only measured service (folks of a certain age will remember the Kafkaesque hell that was "message units". Unlimited local calling is a recent invention, and had the unfortunate timing to be introduced about the same time as the Hayes modem.

Comment Sure, blame the source that isn't paying... (Score 1) 136

Livestock are fed an enormous quantity of sub-therapeutic doses of antibiotics to stimulate weight gain.
Those animals piss and shit those drugs where it eventually ends up in the water supply.
The difference between industrial agriculture and pharma factories in India/China is that agriculture pays for the drugs.

If you steal from one author it's plagiarism; if you steal from many it's research. -- Wilson Mizner