Less efficient not only in fuel consumption, but also in road consumption. A while back Texas A&M did a road study on how traffic is effected by these large trucks. One finding is a stop lights they take about 1.5 times a long to transverse as a car. Check which cars make you miss the light next time you are trying to go through an intersection.
So 'Desktop Linux' is just not cutting it for me yet. Almost, but not quite. (Seriously, get USB keyboards working with yer full disk encryption, Debian.)
That said, I'm not going to Windows 8 or even 8.1. Evar. In the rare event that I need to run something that only runs on Win 8, I've got a company supplied Virtual box VM image with a legit corporate licensed copy. (I've booted up to run the latest version of MS Dev Studio less times than I can count on one hand.)
In the slightly more common event that I need to run something that ran fine on WinXP, but won't run on Win7, I have a WinXP Virtual Box image. This has saved my older, but perfectly working USB scanner.
In the much more frequent event that I want to run in a Linux desktop environment for, say, development work, working with iptables, or the like, I've got a couple different Mint Linux Virtual Box images.
About the only thing I don't have an image for is a Hackintosh... but I've got a company-supplied Macbook which also has an array of Virtual Box images hanging around.
Mint is about || yay close to being usable as my main desktop OS, but has a few standout problems. I DO use it as my laptop OS.
Win 8 will NEVER be an issue for me.
MS is a public firm, so if XP is losing money, and share holder value is not being honored, then yes MS has every reason to kill it.
But if customers are still finding enough value to pay MS to support it, then MS is just making arbitrary decisions that are hurt long term value. If business customers are not going to be able to trust MS to support core technology that is good enough, they will go somewhere else. Business customers can't be expected to change their business models just because MS want to sell a new toy.
As far as advertising naked internet webcam show for pay to kids, yes this is illegal, but face the facts. If a kid is interested in modeling, the most likely way to make money without allowing oneself to be physically molested and becoming addicted to drugs and actually making money is the web cam route. It is not ideal, but I suspect most of these ads are not for any kind of modeling career, but scams to separate parents from the hard earned money, and sell young people fake dreams.
Therefore, the best way to keep you conspiracy secret is simply have discussion while you are engaged in sex, or make sure that all participants are at least naked the camera prominently display the naughty bits. These will be deemed to be simple pron, and the terrorists will be free to plan the bombing of whatever place they desire.
This is the dichotomy of futurism. The future does depend, to some extent, of a single genius who can integrate all that is in the world in such a way that a novel idea or product can be produced. We see this repeatedly in the sciences. But the single genius is seldom the one to develop the only one involved in developing the concept. It is a convenient short hand to say so and so invented something, but it only a fiction that we create so we can teach a simpler form of history.
By reading about the development of products that changed the world, instead of just the people who received credit, I think we are better able to identify the pieces that some future genius will put together into the next big thing, if that is at all possible. For instance in the late 1970's did anyone know that the proto-spreadsheet floating around and the introduction of the prebuilt Apple computerwould lead to Visicalc and the revolution of how the average person relates to numbers?
Reading fiction and non-fiction that explores the possibilities or technology, and even the rejection of technology can lead to discussion on the various factors effected the adoption and exploration of technology. For instance Guns, Germs, and Steel puts forward many hypothesis on why some civilizations developed technology, some borrowed it, and some rejected it. It related to the distribution and adoption of technology today and in the future, and how those futurist who think technology is the answer can make it more widely available. On the fiction side, The Difference Engine imagines a world where we had computers in the victorian era. This can lead to a discussion on the differences between an idea, a manufacturing process, and an affordable mass manufacturing process. For instance, was the technology for manufacturing hundreds of identical gears present in the 1800's?
One this I find interesting is that we know have simplified the process of programming computers to the point where an slightly above average kid with an average education can develop an App. This only took 50 years, two generations. This reflects something that we see repeatedly. The spread of technology does not depend on a special person making a technology, rather the development of a process that makes the technology available to greater number of people. For instance, the process to make a precision screw was incredible important to much of what we do today, even if many of the people who have used the screw do not understand what it does.
If they desperately need someone to do all this great stuff, I wonder why you have to take a pay cut. Sure, you may be overpaid at you current job because of stress and what not, but i wonder if this new firm is just looking to find someone who will fix the problems cheap and then go away when they do not get a raise.
Life is certainly more about money. but that is mostly said by people who have it.