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Comment: Re:Yeah, good luck ... (Score 5, Insightful) 254

by taustin (#48263059) Attached to: Apple Pay Competitor CurrentC Breached

I'll trust Visa more not because they've been at it a while, but because the law gives me a good deal of protection against fraud. CurrentC does not use credit cards, it requires direct access to your checking account. That means none of the legal protections against fraud that apply to credit cards. It also means that if their servers get breached, and that bank account information is stolen, the thieves aren't stealing money from the bank, and the bank responsible for getting it back, but rather, they're stealing my money from my bank account, and it's up to me to get it back. And my bank isn't responsible, and the merchant probably isn't either, according to their terms of service, and the people behind CurrentC are likely a shell corporation with nothing to sue them for.

CurrentC looks, to me, like the biggest bucket of bad ideas in the history of electronic payment.

Comment: Why CurrentC will fail miserably (Score 5, Informative) 627

by taustin (#48252289) Attached to: Why CurrentC Will Beat Out Apple Pay

1. One of the terms of service is exclusivity - if you use CurrentC, you can't use any other kind of mobile wallet system.

2. It is more like a debit card than a credit card - the money comes directly out of your bank account.

3. As such, it has none of the legal protections that a credit card has. With a debit card, pretty much all banks offer the same protection on debit cards anyway, because it's good for their business. CurrentC won't be run by banks, it will be run by some of the largest retailers in the country - Walmart, etc. None of the political pressures that keep banks on the straight and narrow apply.

4. CurrentC requires - cannot possibly work without - that you give the retailer all the information needed to take as much money as they choose directly from your bank account. These are the same retailers who have had hundreds of millions of credit card numbers stolen from their servers in the last couple of years. They have proven, conclusively, that they cannot be trusted.

5. CurrentC is about more than just transaction fees. It is also about turning the customer into a product - they require a lot of personal information that is completely irrelevant to the transaction - like health information (which they are also incapable of protecting) - to set up the account.

6. CurrentC is based on QR Codes, which is just stupid.

I'll go back to carrying cash before I use a mess like that. Or barter. Or growing my own food on a mountain top somewhere.

Comment: Re:Mediocre? How about godawful? Terrible? (Score 1) 193

by taustin (#48106073) Attached to: A Critical Look At Walter "Scorpion" O'Brien

Dude, you missed the best part, at the end, when they're driving a Ferrari under the jet liner that's flying eight feet off the runway, with the copilot sitting on the lowered landing gear dangling an Ethernet cable down to the car so they could grab a copy of the magic software off the plane's flight systems.

It was so ridiculous, I kept looking for Bruce Campbell with a chainsaw for a hand. What made it funny was how earnest they were about it all. How anyone could keep a straight face long enough to finish a single scene, I don't know. Funniest new show of the season. Far funnier than any of the comedies, like Two and a Half Years Past When It Should Have Been Canceled And The Entire Cast Put in a Home. Or Mysteries of Laura, which is based on the premise that using police powers to blackmail your children (who had been kicked out of preschool for peeing on each other) in to a new preschool, then drugging the children to keep them quiet while interviewing with the headmistress, well, that's the funniest shit on television.

Comment: Re:Then, he's the writer of the series? (Score 1) 193

by taustin (#48106005) Attached to: A Critical Look At Walter "Scorpion" O'Brien

From the sounds of it ... he's making some pretty deluded statements about his life, passing them off as if they're true, and then selling it to people who are making it into TV which says 'based on a true story'. In many places, that's called fraud when you financially gain from it.

In Hollywood, however, it's called "a day that ends in 'y'."

"Based on a true story" means "based on the title of a book that you might recognize." If you don't know that, you should be kept in a home for the mentally insufficient, for your own safety.

It sounds like this guy has been going around making extraordinary claims, and nobody has had the slightest inclination to challenge him on it.

Why would they? It doesn't make any difference whatsoever if the producers (or network) believe him in any way. It doesn't matter how credible he is.. All that matters is if they think they can sell more advertising during the show than they think they could during a different show. They thought they could.

I expect they're wrong on that, But that's hardly unusual, either.

Comment: Re:Outrage burnout (Score 1) 150

by taustin (#48086825) Attached to: Adobe Spies On Users' eBook Libraries

There's no point in submitting them for publication in a format that nobody is going to bother to read. PDFs are nice for stuff that's going to be printed. They're marginal on a desktop sized screen. They're utterly useless on a bookreader sized screen.

And PDFs can't be converted to other formats worth a damn, DRM or not.

Comment: Re:CDC "Estimates" (Score 1) 280

by taustin (#47978117) Attached to: CDC: Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million In 4 Months

From my experience, CDC estimates should be taken with a grain of salt, as they often seem dubious at best.

They're not the least bit dubious, or hard to understand. CDC estimates, like all their actions, are designed o get them more tax dollars to play with. They're reasonably good at it, and never ones to miss an opportunity to profit from public hysteria.

More people die in Africa every month from dysentery than have died from ebola ever. But there's no public hysteria, and thus no tax dollars, in that.

Never trust a computer you can't repair yourself.