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Comment Re:I dunno... (Score 1) 214

Yes, I am bemoaning the loss of the plasma screen, I still think it has the best blacks, but still.

I bought a 60" plasma screen last year. It has terrific blacks, from the panel itself, to a special non-glare coating, to a "round down" function to handle the case where the HDMI stream ends up encoding black as "almost black", and forcing it back to black.

Plasma TVs vanished from the bottom-end, but they still exist. OLED might genuinely replace plasma, though.

Comment Re:Easy (Score 3, Interesting) 214

My home theater setup is a 60" plasma screen attached to my laptop. It's only used as a display panel, but it works fine for that (text isn't great, but movies are). I enjoy a real home theater setup over any tablet or whatever. I doubt that use is going away.

I think the big failure is that "Smart TVs" just aren't quite good enough to replace the "TV sticks", or at least not at a competitive price. But a big dumb display panel that looks great; that I want.

Comment Seems unlikely (Score 1) 146

Because, for every person like you, there are 10 that would just say "Speaker not work. Must buy new speaker."

Perhaps they would say that, but why on earth would they then buy a speaker from a manufacturer who had screwed them over like that?

In fact if a manufacturer did that to me, I'd tell friends not to buy that brand, and be inclined to tell future generations not to do so also. To this day I don't buy Sony audio equipment because of bad experiences in college.

So I hardly think it likely they would produce something crappy in this way on purpose.

Comment Apps on TV will be huge, but mainly linked (Score 1) 214

Apps as a new way to stream on TV is not that interesting and will not really do anything much to increase traditional TV watching.

What will be much larger is the potential for apps on TV to add lots of context around what we are watching, which will mostly occur by linking mobile apps to TV apps driving the display. Then you can have more of a shared experience, or direct feedback related to the video which the video producer could also use live...

Comment Re:The judge issued a verdict ahead of trial? (Score 3, Interesting) 221

There are three parties in the US now:
* The Left, not materially represented in Congress, but Bernie Sanders is an example of a Left politician.
* The Right, not materially represented in Congress, but Ben Carson is an example of a Right politician.
* The Donor Party, which includes the vast majority of Democrats and Republicans in government (at least at the federal level), and which gets great and responsive representation.

Our government is very attentive and responsive to the best interest of the constituents who sent them to office. The problem is those constituents are the big money donors, not the people who are voting Democrat or Republican.

It's structurally possible to fix this though primary elections, and by "primary-ing out" incumbents. But we, the voters, need to start caring more about evicting the Donor Party guys than about whether Left or Right win. The Donor Party games us every year by calling the non-Donor Party guys "extremists" for daring to represent what the people actually want. Can we stop caring about how the mainstream media describes candidates? I'm doubtful, but it's possible.

Comment Re:What purpose does registration serve? (Score 1) 192

It was established legal tradition in Britain for some time before the US war for independence that people were allowed to own guns because, even though hunting was illegal, guns weren't only for hunting, they could be used to defend one's home. It was common in the colonies (where everyone had guns, and hunting was legal) that every man was required to bring his gun to church on Sunday, in case a group of men with guns was required for any purpose. These guns were expected to be serviceable military weapons - a tradition going back to the late medieval period, where every man was required to own a weapon of war in case that was needed (and swords were very cheaply available after the plague, so real military weapons, not farm implements, were expected).

There are still several modern nations in which every man of age is required to own a modern military rifle (issued by the government). This idea that somehow the "right to keep and bear arms" excludes modern military small arms is a very modern contrivance, and not at all the intent of the Second Amendment. Heck, not just small arms - even 100 years ago cannon were typically bought for the town by the wealthy, and taken off to war when needed.

It's a very simple idea with centuries of legal tradition behind it: a free man has the right to own a gun, and not just for hunting, but actual military small arms. Totalitarian states disarm their subjects to prevent uprisings. Free societies have an armed populace to keep the government nervous about uprisings. It really is that fundamental.

Comment Contractors can have institutional knowledge (Score 1) 167

If you hire a contractor for a long enough term, you can have pretty good amounts of institutional knowledge - You find a few contractors over time that really know the subject well and are effective workers, then do what you need to to keep them around at least a few years.

These days you have just as much risk of key personnel leaving if they are any good. In some ways a contractor is less risky as they will be more prone to be clear if they need more money to stay on longer, whereas an employee might find it easier to get a raise by finding a different company (I know that was true back when I worked for large companies, getting a raise was far harder and offered less reward than moving to a different company)

Comment Re:What purpose does registration serve? (Score 2) 192

You have to get licensed to own a gun, drive a car, and you have to register to vote.

You do not have to get licensed to own a gun, at least in states that show the slightest respect for the US Constitution. You do not have to get licensed to drive a car, unless you want to drive it in public places (and even then, driving farm equipment on farm-to-market roads doesn't require a license, as that was seen as an undue burden). You don't, in practice, have to register to vote, unless you live somewhere that requires an ID to vote - and most states see an ID as an undue burden.

You don't need a pilots license to fly a plane (well, most planes), if you stay at low altitude and away form airports. You shouldn't need to register to own a drone, or to fly one as long as you stay at low altitude and away from airports.

Comment Re:Solution (Score 1) 363

The personal income tax rule applies even to people who have renounced their citizenship. If, as a US citizen, you move to another country and renounce your citizenship the government expects 1) a one-time 40% tax on all of your assets and 2) personal income taxes for the next ten years. I don't know how many people actually pay - in my mind a person who is no longer a US citizen isn't subject to its laws except when on US soil.

Comment Re:That won't last long... (Score 1) 791

Yeah. He took a clock and put it into another case so it sorta looks like a Hollywood version of a bomb. Then when they started asking him questions his answers were designed to provoke suspicion.

The whole thing was a political stunt, most likely dreamed up by his activist father. The case should be thrown out with prejudice, and the plaintiff ordered to pay fees.

Going the speed of light is bad for your age.