Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Will cost FAR more for the same thing (Score 2) 448

by Willuz (#48758405) Attached to: Unbundling Cable TV: Be Careful What You Wish For
Consider the Comcast policy for low cap internet as an excellent example. All plans are capped at 300GB. If you don't need that much you can reduce the cap to 5GB and get a massive $5 discount off the base price of the plan. However, under the reduced plan each GB over 5 costs a dollar per GB. If you get back up to 300GB that would cost you $295 for the same data that only saved you $5 when it was removed.

Savings per GB reduction $0.02
Cost per GB added $1.00

This is the actual pricing plan currently offered by Comcast so let's try substituting Channels for GB and see what that does for the price.

If this same ratio were applied to channels then you would save 2 cents for each unbundled channel you removed but have to pay a dollar for each channel you want. As with the internet plan the base price would still apply even with no channels so let's do an estimate. Let's say you pay $50 a month for 100 channels. Removing ALL of the channels at 2 cents per channel would save you $2 for a plan price of $48.

This means that for the exact same price as your bundle you can now only have 2 channels. Going back to all the channels you had in the bundle would cost you $148 for the same service you previously got for $50.

Comment: Re:Short sighted (Score 1) 230

by Willuz (#48600393) Attached to: Forbes Blasts Latests Windows 7 Patch as Malware
Agreed, I know that the meaning of words can change over time but this is an egregious misuse of the term "bricked". There are plenty of terms to refer to a degradation in function but "bricked" specifically refers to an unrecoverable total failure such as a corrupted BIOS or blown electronics which cannot feasibly be fixed.

Comment: Re:Home storage (Score 1) 488

by Willuz (#48368255) Attached to: Denmark Faces a Tricky Transition To 100 Percent Renewable Energy
You're incorrectly assuming that they produce 100% of maximum capacity in the summer. They may have 38GW of capacity but they will never actually achieve full capacity. Unfortunately, I'm unable to find a chart that shows monthly production for Germany but I guarantee it's not that big a difference between winter and summer.

Comment: Education still matters (Score 2) 299

by Willuz (#48075113) Attached to: Why Military Personnel Make the Best IT Pros
Many military IT admins leave the service and attempt to find a job in the same field but they have two major hurdles.

1. The same job they were doing in the military requires a 4 year degree in the private sector.
This is an issue time and again with not having a degree. There is plenty of debate around here about whether a 4 year degree is really beneficial to everyone. However, you cannot debate the minimum requirements for a DoD contractor position. I have seen plenty of people kicked out of a job that they were good at because the requirements changed and they don't qualify for their own job. This issue is exacerbated by predatory for-profit technical colleges who are preying on those same technicians in order to claim their GI bill $$.

2. Education does matter when it comes to writing skills.
The biggest thing that is lacking for enlisted IT admins is the ability to solve problems in a new way and document the resolution. In the military everything has rules and you are not allowed to write the rules yourself. In private industry everyone is responsible for helping to write the rules for their own position and ensure that the existing processes stay updated. Prior service personnel tend to be very bad at this part of the job and require extensive training in professional writing.

Comment: Re:Start menu usage dropped in lieu of what? (Score 1) 269

by Willuz (#48026925) Attached to: Microsoft's Asimov System To Monitor Users' Machines In Real Time
Classic Start Menu. I've been using it since Vista (ok 7 really because i skipped Vista). I wonder if their spyware will be able to detect usage of 3rd party replacements because Classic Start Menu is used by a great many people who believe in adding new features without giving up the old ones.

Comment: Re:Good. Let's go. (Score 1) 181

Your response is entirely lacking in knee-jerk paranoid delusions and as such does not belong here.

It's obvious to everyone else on the interwebz that an evil big corporation that spends billions mining an asteroid and creating an orbital station from the materials should not be allowed to own that station because it's made up of celestial bodies that can't be owned.

Just be sure you don't eat the space corn when you take your space vacation to space Disney. The corn was grown on an asteroid so Asteroid = Corn. You ate the corn and it became part of you so Corn = You. According the the transitive property of an equality You = Corn = Asteroid so you can no longer claim ownership your own body which will be put to work serving space corndogs at space Disney.

Comment: Re:Competition (Score 1) 258

by Willuz (#46959715) Attached to: The Mere Promise of Google Fiber Sends Rivals Scrambling
I can't decide on a single reference due to the overwhelming evidence so let me google that for you.

http://lmgtfy.com/?q=telecom+g...
or this: http://www.fcc.gov/guides/rece...

After receiving those grants the telecom companies negotiate the term "broadband" to the lowest speed possible so that that their current DSL networks meet the standard without upgrades.

http://lmgtfy.com/?q=broadband...

The result of this is the telecoms receive the grants and the people receive nothing.

Comment: Re:Surprised (Score 1) 143

by Willuz (#46959365) Attached to: How Dumb Policies Scare Tech Giants Away From Federal Projects
Comparing the lower ROI is not entirely accurate due to a differences in commercial vs government business structures. Commercial projects required yearly increases in profit in order to maximize shareholder income. A fixed rate government contract provides income but remains relatively constant over the life of the contract. On shareholder financial reports this looks like stagnant growth and negatively affects the share price. Due to this a company can make 10% a year and still lose money because shareholder confidence is eroded by the lack of growth.

There are only two ways to increase income in a government contracting company. You can reduce overhead or you can get new contracts. Unfortunately, the sequestration has severely limited new contracts so companies are slashing costs in order to show increasing profits. This cost slashing almost always occurs at the expense of the labor who make up the greatest expense.

Comment: Re:Open source shovels and hoes (Score 1) 136

by Willuz (#46795251) Attached to: Plant Breeders Release 'Open Source Seeds'
I cited actual an actual peer reviewed study. You sited an anecdotal opinion piece from an absurdly biased internet "news" site. The title of the article is a joke followed by a question but I read it despite this sad attempt at journalism. What I discovered is that your citation doesn't even support your original argument. The farmer in the article just used traditional crop rotation methods to reduce his use of GMO seeds, pesticides and herbicides. This single example is also in one of the most fertile farming valleys in North America.

There is no point in continuing a "conversation" with someone who is so easily fooled by baseless suppositions but adamantly opposed to science.

I would have ended the conversation when your resorted to personal insults but this topic really bothers me. Organic farmers and health activists aren't just saying "Hey! This way is better!". They said that but they're still being outperformed by other farmers so they have resorted to lobbying politicians to make everyone else's way illegal. I'll end this conversation with this final unbiased example citation and hope that at some point you chose facts over feelings and assumptions.
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01...

Comment: Re:Open source shovels and hoes (Score 1) 136

by Willuz (#46792595) Attached to: Plant Breeders Release 'Open Source Seeds'
Weeds can become resistant to roundup but this is not a serious issue. I can be easily solved by the application of alternative herbicides when a roundup resistant strain appears. The alternative herbicide will kill the roundup resistant weeds before they spread. Without weeds leaching nutrients the crops grow healthier and fuller so the world receives more food.

Insects are somewhat trickier because of their greater mobility and faster life cycles, but there are also procedures in place to handle this. These GMO crops are very different from roundup resistant crops in that they actually attack insects by producing pesticides. Every farmer who uses GMO crops that produce insecticides is required by contract and EPA regulations to also plant non GMO refuges within every field. These refuges allow non resistant insects a place to live so that in the highly unlikely event that an insect develops a resistance it has plenty of non resistant mates available and the resistance is lost in cross breeding. There are absolutely no documented incidences of insects developing Bt resistance when the refuge system is utilized. However, just in case there are new strains being developed which use up to two of the three effective pesticides. This means that in the really truly extreme unlikelihood that an insect becomes resistant to both insecticides they simply plant another strain that uses the third type and it kills the insects.

Peer reviewed citation: http://www.nature.com/nbt/jour...
Simple diagram: http://www.bt.ucsd.edu/learn/r...

There are mountains of evidence showing that GM crops produce more food per acre and have a very positive effect on feeding the world. They are also better on the environment because they reduce the usage of harsh herbicides and insecticides. There is no credible evidence that GMO crops have any negative effect on consumers. The few studies which claimed cancer links were proven false and have since been retracted. Continuing to make this work does require ongoing research and the development of new GMO plants. This research is expensive and that's why the seeds cost more. In the end the farmers still win because the increased output of the fields more than offsets the extra cost of the seed. In the process the entire world wins because we produce more food.

That is, until fear mongering groups who have no scientific proof fight to have laws put in place to prevent anyone from growing GMO crops. In their fight to "save" the world from GMO billions of people starve due to famines that could have been prevented.

A list is only as strong as its weakest link. -- Don Knuth

Working...