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Comment: Re:Proof that capitalism doesn't work (Score 1) 163

Ruining it? You must be joking.... Or, merely naive? Forcing AT&T to increase performance while decreasing price might, must might, reduce their profit margin from nearly infinite to something you can compute with long double precision. Remember AT&T used to make over 1200% profit on caller-id. And that was computed using the special accounting rules that only AT&T and the baby bells get to use.

Comment: Re:no, telcos 20+ years old don't get same conditi (Score 2) 163

I live just out side of Austin (groan... there goes my property value...) and I've been watching this mess for a long time. Austin started to build a network like this one back in the '90s. Then the telcos used their pet politicos to get a law pass in Texas that makes it illegal for a City to build its own network. That was the end of high speed Internet hopes for cities in Texas. Then, AT&T. Verizon, Time Warner, and Comcast got pissed off because the cities were requiring them to build out what passed for high speed Internet through out entire cities if they wanted to build it at all. So..... they went to their pet politicos (the folks we refer as the people in the owners box at the legislature) and got the law changed so that only the state gets to tell them where they can or can't build their networks, so AT&T is putting in fiber to the curb in new developments with million dollar homes and in working class neighborhoods you are lucky to get minimal DSL.

Now Google is rolling out gigabit Internet to with in half a mile of my home, but not to my home. I could just cry. This is going to kill Round Rock. And, believe me, ever since Dell moved here Austin has been gunning for Round Rock.

Comment: Re:argh, you dumb fucks (Score 1) 149

by damburger (#40052499) Attached to: Falcon 9 Launch Aborted At Last Minute

I'm glad I'm not the only one saying it.

Musk himself isn't NASA bashing; he is extremely grateful for their assistance. Its all the SpaceX fanboys who are the problem, trying to make Falcon 9 out as the harbinger of a libertarian conquest of space. It isn't, its just a well designed rocket which the US government isn't paying massively over the odds for.

Comment: Re:good call (Score 1) 149

by damburger (#40052475) Attached to: Falcon 9 Launch Aborted At Last Minute

It is actually a successful abort test (albeit an unscheduled one!) Now, SpaceX knows that they can shut down the engines half a second before liftoff with no problems at all.

An engine lost on launch would've prevented the payload reaching the ISS. Aborting the launch unquestionably saved this mission (although it may yet be unsuccessful.

I admit, I've been skeptical of 'private' spaceflight, both because of the libertarian ideological bleating that seems to always be associated with it (posing a risk to gov. investment in space) and the fact that, with NASA still holding the hands of everyone, it isn't truly private. Nonetheless, today is a complete success for SpaceX. They had a problem, they dealt with it well.

Comment: Re:Score 1 moe for the government. (Score 1) 307

by damburger (#40013897) Attached to: An 8,000 Ton Giant Made the Jet Age Possible

SpaceX was only able to do this because the US had spent all the money doing the groundwork for them, and even then NASA held their hands quite a bit. Elon Musk himself admits this.

Even if NASA is inefficient, that doesn't prove the thesis at all. Russian (or more pertinently, Soviet) rockets are cheap and reliable.

Comment: Re:The future will be printed, not forged. (Score 2) 307

by damburger (#40003667) Attached to: An 8,000 Ton Giant Made the Jet Age Possible

I'm sorry, but I can't see any evidence that what these machines can do can be replicated by additive processes.

Yes, additive manufacture is great, but it isn't a universal construction technique. Don't forget please, that the last country that thought you could just dump heavy industry and replace it with small scale operations didn't do very well.

Comment: Sheffield Forgemasters (Score 4, Interesting) 307

by damburger (#40003639) Attached to: An 8,000 Ton Giant Made the Jet Age Possible

The UK company is mentioned as being build up with cheap government loans, which is a half truth.

Yes, they are getting cheap loans, but only begrudgingly and only after the government had canceled a much larger loan, aimed at letting them produce "ultra large" forgings that few other places in the world can manage, mostly for the nuclear industry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sheffield_Forgemasters#2010_expansion

But of course, we have to spend billions turning London into a bland commercial fortress for the Olympics. This is not that surprising; money that is meant to be spend on a national level has a nasty habit of being spent within a few miles of London.

But hey, I'm sure the Coalition know what they are doing. I'm sure putting missile launchers of peoples roofs and forbidding British beer brewers from selling stuff in many of the capitals pubs is a far more sensible economic investment than developing world class forging capabilities.

Comment: Re:Score 1 moe for the government. (Score 4, Insightful) 307

by damburger (#40003593) Attached to: An 8,000 Ton Giant Made the Jet Age Possible

Well, yes, this is something that government clearly does best. Big, chunky investments whose returns are nebulous and decades after the initial outlay.

I don't mind that much that private enterprise then builds on government work afterwards, but what pisses me right off is when private companies then decide they owe nothing to the society that hosts them, avoid taxes, and campaign for reductions in the ones they do pay.

This, of course, has the advantage for established private enterprise of kicking away the ladder of government R&D and infrastructure investment so no pesky competitors can get the same leg up.

Comment: Re:It's already gone (Score 3, Insightful) 153

by damburger (#39998179) Attached to: Foxconn CEO Fuels iTV Rumors

Notice how all American posters think that ITV is just going to be rolled over by Apple simply because it is a UK company they haven't heard of. ITV have a long history trading under that name, are still one of the main content providers.

The UK is a large enough market, that Apple would not want a pointless legal fight just to take over a name that would, for most British people, sound odd associated with an Apple product. Especially seeing as "Apple TV" is already established as a thing.

Comment: Re:Attention, screeching children (Score 1) 319

by damburger (#39840239) Attached to: Fly-By-Wire Contributed To Air France 447 Disaster

You correctly point out the Telegraph is a UK publication, but utterly fail to understand the politics in more detail. There is a deep divide in the UK media as to our place in the world. Should we be closer to our European neighbours, or should we be closer to the US? Take a wild guess which side of this debate the Telegraph falls on. Strongly.

The paper despises the EU, and doesn't think much of the French. They are quite well motivated to take shots at Airbus (and Air France) even without any kickbacks from Boeing.

To me, the article does seem to stink of opportunistic frog-bashing. The accident was indeed complex, and Airbus are going to have to do some thinking about the cockpit design (and Air France do some very hard thinking about how they train crews) - but that does not excuse the bias on display.

Practical people would be more practical if they would take a little more time for dreaming. -- J. P. McEvoy

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