Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Re:Unclear who this hurts (Score 1) 65

by ScentCone (#49800331) Attached to: Feds Bust a Dark-Web Counterfeit Coupon Kingpin

Bullshit. Unless you can point to real evidence this is true, you're just guessing.

What? How do you think that coupons actually work, anyway?

1) You present a coupon, and you pay less cash at the point of sale than you otherwise would have. This is not a mystery. It's the whole point. If it's the retailer's own coupon, then they are basically putting the item on sale in exchange for having a trackable form of marketing. If it's a manufacturer's coupon, then the retailer is participating in a mechanism wherein the manufacturer and retailer have worked out a back-channel compensation scheme for the retailer having collected less cash during the transaction. This is also not a mystery.

2) When you present the retailer with a bogus retailer coupon, you're getting a discount that's disconnected from one of the key reasons they issued the coupon in the first place: to understand which marketing methods are the most constructive. When you present the retailer with a bogus manufacturer's coupon, one of two things happens: the retailer eats the loss, or the manufacturer does. Again, why are you acting like this is some strange unknown? Or, are you just hoping that someone there's a third magical possibility that makes it just fine to rip off businesses with fake coupons? Yeah, I thought so.

Comment: Re:Unclear who this hurts (Score 1) 65

by ScentCone (#49800287) Attached to: Feds Bust a Dark-Web Counterfeit Coupon Kingpin

Is short, this "informative" post is nothing but a guess.

What you mean is that you have no idea how retail operations and promotional marketing work, but you vaguely want it to be true that ripping off stuff through the use of bogus discount coupons is a "victimless crime" blah blah blah, so you're going to pretend that basic information is unknowable, as moral cover. Hint: you're not as clever as you think you are.

Comment: Re:Seriously? (Score 1) 268

by Rei (#49800067) Attached to: Crowdfunded, Solar-powered Spacecraft Goes Silent

I think it's pretty amazing that spacecraft can survive at all out there, given the sort of particles flying around - individual cosmic rays with the energy of fast-pitch baseballs. Thankfully, particles with such high energy have tiny cross sections (they prefer to move through matter rather than interact with it), and when they do hit something and create a shower of particles, most of the progeny is likewise super-high energy and will most likely just move through whatever it's in.

It's more interesting when they strike the atmosphere - each collision creates a new shower of other high energy particles, more and more, spreading out the energy as they descend. In the end, detectors on the surface over an area of dozens of square kilometers simultaneously pick up different pieces of the same cascade kicked off by a single cosmic ray collision.

Comment: Re:Just...wow. (Score 4, Insightful) 67

by Rei (#49798823) Attached to: Hacked Emails Reveal Russian Plans To Obtain Sensitive Western Tech

No, fines for violating export laws.

Being slapped with massive fines is usually pretty good motivation for a company. And given that the US spends nearly half of the world's total military spending, and the EU a good chunk of the rest, simply "hopping overseas" and choosing to serve other markets isn't exactly the smartest of plans, financially.

It's idiodic for a company to wilfully risk sales of hundreds of thousands of units per year to NATO to sell a couple hundred units to Russia. Russia's economy is barely bigger than Canada's. And less than 80% the size of Brazil's.

Comment: Re:Just...wow. (Score 1) 67

by Rei (#49798769) Attached to: Hacked Emails Reveal Russian Plans To Obtain Sensitive Western Tech

You could start by reading more than the first paragraph.

1) They don't have "zero" capability, but they have way too little - only a few hundred modern imagers.

2) They have tried to buy them off ebay before. And it led to arrests. It's illegal to export military-grade night vision equipment without a license, and apparently sites like ebay are well monitored for potential violations.

Comment: Re:The things pump out plenty of RF. (Score 1) 215

by ScentCone (#49798591) Attached to: Why Detecting Drones Is a Tough Gig

I think there should be a no carrier in there somewhere.

Which wouldn't matter a bit if the machine is flying waypoints using its own internal flight controller. That's how mine work: you inform the machine of the flight plan using a ground station, and then it does off and does its thing, whether or not you can talk to it along the way. Loss of, say, Verizon's signal wouldn't make a bit of difference.

Comment: Re:Unclear who this hurts (Score 3, Informative) 65

by ScentCone (#49798125) Attached to: Feds Bust a Dark-Web Counterfeit Coupon Kingpin
Both. The retailer takes on the overhead costs of handling the coupon. They are then collecting less money at the register, but never seeing the expected promotional kick-in from the defrauded manufacturer ... unless the manufacturer wants to continue to provide the retailer with promotional money for fake promos that never actually happened. All sorts of back-and-forth with the accounting, tax implications, distorted reporting - just bad for everyone all the way around.

Comment: Re:EU food ban? (Score 3, Informative) 74

Yeah, but they "cheat" a lot - for example, Belarus has made a mint serving as a reshipping platform for European goods. And for some reason they left Iceland off their list even though we supported the sanctions against them. Still, it's caused major food price inflation (unsurprisingly). Seems kind of a weird way to punish Europe, it seems obvious it's going to have a lot more effect at home than abroad - Russia's trade in food goods with Europe makes up far more of its imports than Europe's trade in food goods with Russia makes up of its exports. But I guess they didn't have a lot of options for "retaliation". I mean, Gazprom is already nearly going broke as it is, turning off the spigots would have rapidly ensured that it did. Oil and gas make up half of their government budget and 2/3rds of their exports - it'd sure punish Europe, but it'd also be economic suicide.

I think they're really hoping that the sanctions will just expire and they'll be able to go back to raking in western capital again. Because if they don't expire, barring some huge unexpected oil price surge, those reserve funds are going to dry up. They expect it to be down to under $40B by the end of this year. What they're going to do when it runs out, I have no clue. They need dollars and euros to buy the goods that their undersized industrial sector can't manufacture. China's a help but not a solution; they don't have the lending power of the US or EU to begin with, and their goal seems to be more exploiting Russia over the situation than offering friendly aid. For example, they got Russia to agree to the cutthroat rates on the proposed "Power Of Siberia" pipeline that they'd been trying to get for years and to let them own greater than 50% stakes on fields inside Russia. They got Russia to sell them their most advanced air defense system despite the objections of the defense industry over concerns that China would do what they always do with new technology - reverse engineer it and then produce it domestically. But who else are they going to turn to? China's basically becoming Russia's "loan shark". And at the end of the day, if it came down to it and China had to chose between the Russian market and the 20-fold larger market of the US and EU? It's not even a contest.

Comment: Re:Seeking Technical Solution to Social Problem? (Score 1) 215

by ScentCone (#49795655) Attached to: Why Detecting Drones Is a Tough Gig

Meanwhile, in ten years, every tourist in DC will have a selfie drone

Which would be fine, except the DC FRZ (flight restriction zone) is a 30-mile circle around the Capital within which it is illegal to fly ANY remote control device of any kind. Includes "drones" as well as those toy RC helicopters at the mall kiosks, and the sort of RC planes that people have been flying around for many decades. Some tourist flying a quad in DC is in for a very rude awakening, as has already happened.

Comment: Re:The things pump out plenty of RF. (Score 1) 215

by ScentCone (#49795617) Attached to: Why Detecting Drones Is a Tough Gig

Yea, but a cell phone signal flying over the south lawn is a pretty clear indicator that you have an issue

Wouldn't matter. Do you understand how small the White House grounds are, and how fast even a modest quad can fly when it means business? I've got one that can do over 40mph. That would cover the distance from the sidewalk in front of the White House to the middle of the typical speech-giving area of the Rose Garden in well under 8 seconds. A drone flying waypoints - with no need for a human controller nearby or watching - could be moving that fast well before it gets to the White House fence, and be coming in 200' overhead, be above a high-profile press event in seconds, cut power and drop like a stone spewing a mist of cesium or a nice cloud of serin or laden with a nice little brick of C4, and it would be on the ground in the middle of that speech/ceremony so fast you'd have no ability to do something about it. Except maybe light it up with some sort of automated buckshot gatling gun, right in the middle of a busy urban area.

This is going to result in a lot more events being held indoors.

Comment: Re:Not a new idea (Score 2) 32

by Rei (#49795303) Attached to: GoPro's Next Adventure: Virtual Reality and Drones

I figured they'd tackle something more ambitious than that with their drone offerings - a drone that (barring instructions to do otherwise) follows you around whatever you're doing and keeps the camera on you, trying to get the most epic shots. E.g., you bungee jump off a bridge, it races you to the bottom, keeping whatever distance and filming style you told it to.

But maybe it's just another remote control drone.

Comment: Re:Terraforming potential? (Score 1) 276

by Rei (#49792059) Attached to: How To Die On Mars

But that's the point. If it slams into an immobile object of course. But we're not talking about anything slamming into an immobile object. From the perspective of a molecule in the gas stream, it's going about the same speed as its neighbors. It's quite cool.

As for the boundary region, even at the "pinched" funnel outlet one could be talking dozens of kilometers here. A dozen kilometers between going from zero velocity and 25 kilometers per second is roughly the same as a dozen meters between going from zero velocity and 25 meters per second. Aka, a virtually insignificant gradient.

Kiss your keyboard goodbye!

Working...