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Comment: Re:Remember Groupon? (Score 1) 96

by alphatel (#49767611) Attached to: Tech Bubble? What Tech Bubble?

Fluff companies sold to idiots by con-artists. Groupon continues to turn in losses, down from $12 billion at IPO to $4 billion and likely worth nothing.

Uber relies on a commercial advantage of offering a taxi service without the regulatory limits of taxis, but that won't last as they crack down on it, an an obvious taxi service.

Companies that make money hire fancy accountants to hide income cleverly, and keep their valuations trading in an income/profit range.
Companies that sell dreams hire fancy accountants to create income cleverly, and keep their investors hanging on with projected profits and world domination.

+ - 25 Years today - Windows 3.0 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: Windows 3.0 was launched on 22 May 1990 — I know, coz I was there as a SDE on the team. I still have, um, several of the shrink-wrapped boxes of the product — with either 3.5 inch and 5.25 floppies rattling around inside them — complete with their distintive 'I witnessed the event' sticker!

It was a big deal for me, and I still consider Win 3 as *the* most significant Windows' release, and I wonder what other /.ers think — looking back on Win 3?

+ - Rand Paul wraps up NSA "filibuster" after 10 hours->

Submitted by mpicpp
mpicpp writes: After standing on the Senate floor for more than 10 hours in protest of the National Security Agency's sweeping surveillance programs, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, wrapped up his so-called "filibuster" just after Midnight on Thursday morning.

NSA illegal spying and data collection of innocent Americans must end. Thank you all for standing with me. #StandwithRand

— Dr. Rand Paul (@RandPaul) May 21, 2015
The senator and 2016 presidential candidate staged the talkathon ahead of the Senate's consideration of legislation to extend the NSA's authority to collect phone records in bulk. The controversial surveillance program — which has been deemed illegal by one federal court — is supposedly authorized by Section 215 of the Patriot Act. That section of the law is set to expire on June 1, giving Congress little time to renew it.

Paul started his "filibuster" against an extension of the Patriot Act on Wednesday afternoon, even though the Senate was actually in the middle of debate time on an entirely different issue — trade authority. Paul's efforts likely slowed down Senate business — lawmakers are trying to finish a few important bills before taking off for a weeklong recess — but the Senate is still expected to take up legislation to deal with the expiring NSA program.

Link to Original Source

Comment: How about the 70's (Score 1) 284

by alphatel (#49717889) Attached to: The Auto Industry May Mimic the 1980s PC Industry
A better analogy is the auto industry in the 70's. The OPEC gas crunch made every car a brick, pressed higher unemployment, and resulted in towns full of abandoned vehicles.

For 2015 we're seeing a generation of drivers who simply don't care enough about having their own car. Low wages, transportation options, green choices, etc., are all weighing on an old school industry that hasn't evolved past SUVs. Going into the red while still carrying the burden of school debt is not likely to motivate them much, even with cheaper gas. For them, a new bit of tech, one time payment, and $50 cell charges will keep them connected more than any car would.

If you were a kid, which would you choose? A $25,000 loan you have to have to find parking for, or a $1,000 watch/band/hat you can use anywhere with no further responsibilities? Probably they are going to take the latter.

+ - In-Database R Coming to SQL Server 2016

Submitted by theodp
theodp writes: Wondering what kind of things Microsoft might do with its purchase of Revolution Analytics? Over at the Revolutions blog, David Smith announces that in-database R coming to SQL Server 2016. "With this update," Smith writes, "data scientists will no longer need to extract data from SQL server via ODBC to analyze it with R. Instead, you will be able to take your R code to the data, where it will be run inside a sandbox process within SQL Server itself. This eliminates the time and storage required to move the data, and gives you all the power of R and CRAN packages to apply to your database." It'll no doubt intrigue Data Scientist types, but the devil's in the final details, which Microsoft was still cagey about when it talked-the-not-exactly-glitch-free-talk (starts @57:00) earlier this month at Ignite. So, brush up your R, kids, and you can see how Microsoft walks-the-in-database-walk when SQL Server 2016 public preview rolls out this summer.

Comment: Re:Very high accident rates (Score 1, Troll) 408

You are not considering the mileage driven. These cars are on the road for 100k miles + a year, so consider that 4 out of 720 cars were in an accident.

I don't find these stats promising.
Being from a family of 50k miles per year per driver, I can tell you that we all take vehicle safety highly seriously. We do not get into accidents, we do not get broadsided or hit pedestrians or bicyclists or even stop signs.
The two incidents I can recall in over 10 years are once my uncle got hit from behind at a full stop at a red light, and the other time some loony attacked my mother's van with a baseball bat while she was driving down a street in broad daylight. Both had to be reported, neither were "our fault".
What happened in California was probably at least partially the fault of the person or computer behind the wheel. In all likelihood, a human who sits behind a motorized cart all day is likely to make small, albeit non-fatal mistakes when they are finally prompted to take over the wheel. This might account for the two "low-fault" incidents reported, but I would hardly let them get away with "not at fault at all". When you drive with your full attention on your task, you can judge surroundings better, assess risks, quickly decide a course of action, and execute your escape fairly well. So sadly even little fender benders are someone's fault, and almost always both vehicles. The computer accidents? Who knows, shrouded in secrecy no doubt. Twenty bucks says Google paid good money to make it go away quickly and with an NDA.

Comment: Re:For those who can read... (Score 2) 237

Remember that "Snowden" guy who got this ball rolling, and is now in exile because of it?

Too bad there isn't anything we can do to help him out....

You can do a lot of things to help him out, except they're all as "treasonous" as his disclosures.
Donating to Snowden is now illegal

+ - Irish Legislator Proposes Law That Would Make Annoying People Online A Crime->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: Is Ireland looking to pass a law that would "outlaw ebooks and jail people for annoying others?" Well, no, not really, but that's the sort of unintended consequences that follow when laws are updated for the 21st century using little more than a word swap. (h/t Brian Sheehan)

Ireland has had long-standing laws against harassment via snail mail, telephones and (as of 2007) SMS messages. A 2014 report by the government's somewhat troublingly-named "Internet Content Governance Advisory Group" recommended updating this section of the law to cover email, social media and other internet-related transmissions.

Violators are looking at sentences ranging from 1-5 years and fines of up to €75,000 — all for doing something as minor as "causing annoyance, inconvenience or anxiety." In addition, the proposed amendment would provide for the seizure of devices used to send the annoying messages, including computers, cell phones — even the internet connection itself.

Link to Original Source

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