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Comment: Re:Ikea Karlstad couches designed by idiots! (Score 1) 93

by bickerdyke (#49162575) Attached to: Ikea Unveils Furniture That Charges Your Smartphone Wirelessly

In any case, if something breaks in normal use, email IKEA. They have a customer service that works. At the very least they can mail you broken parts.

And spare parts are available even years after you bought the cabinet. That's what I like about IKEA. Their stuff is custumizable and even after years I can get teh stuff that I need to extend or reconfigure my wardrobe. And about durability.... check the uproar that their announced change in Expedit caused. That thing seems to be the only shelv that could be loaded fully with records (or a fish tank) without bending. (Compared to more expensive and more sturdy looking stuff)

On the other hand, I have to agree with the couches. Great idea again to have a few basic constructions and lots of different covers that can be washed or replaced easily. But I can't remember sitting on anything as uncomfortable as an ikea couch.

And with their habot over the last years of retiring products and moving to shorter lived series, they're giving up that special IKEA-ness that made them popular with geekd. (

Comment: Re:... Driverless cars? (Score 2) 300


In the end, its gone anyway. that's just the future and you can't fight it. But pissing off people that can make it happen faster is what a complete fool does. [...] slapping people around that are building the machines that will replace them... is moronic. And that is apparently their little brainchild.

Is it really moronic? If the end of your business line is forseeable within the next few years, it might be the better idea to go all in and grab as much as you can, as long as the "machine that will replace you" has NOT been constructed yet.

Yes, It may speed up the end a year or two, but is that really such a big difference? Grab what you can get as long as you still have the chance.

I think that's called "exit strategy".

Comment: Re:... Driverless cars? (Score 1) 300

As the article points out, this is not a big cost for the companies involved. Unionisation of the buses is not going to make the slightest bit of difference whatsoever to Google's desire to generate a self-driving vehicle.

Please note that Google is not listed among those 5 companies that contracted their busses out to that other company. I don't know about their transportation, but espescially Google has a lot of their service done by their own staff instead of outsourcing to the cheapest bidder:

Comment: Re:Adhoc one time pad encryption (Score 1) 89

by bickerdyke (#49145239) Attached to: OPSEC For Activists, Because Encryption Is No Guarantee

You have a key that is far larger than the data you are encrypting, you never reuse parts of the key. The key is random garbage not generated by the computer, but sampled, e.g. random video mashes together or random noise audio mashed together. You transfer the private key by trusted method,

If you have a trusted communication method you could use the same method to send the actual message. (Exception being when you have a trusted channel once in a while)

Next is that video and audio are far too regular to count as reliable source of randomness. Have a look what work went into defining the entropy sources for the Linux pseudo random number generator. Things you thought should be more than random over a large stretch of time showed to be surprisingly predictable.

Comment: Re:Has already been discussed in literature (Score 1) 162

by bickerdyke (#49132551) Attached to: Should a Service Robot Bring an Alcoholic a Drink?

Take 5min to read this short essay by Asimov, you won't be dissapointed. Asimov was more than just the guy who wrote about fictional robot laws, for example, he was also well known skeptic. Not the modern anti-science kind, a real skeptic, spelt the old fashioned way!

None of it is about robot ethics, it's a metaphor about the folly of thinking that a list of rules, such as the ten commandments, could ever encapsulate all the vagaries of human morality.

Well, Kant with his categoric imperative managed that with even a single rule. (But kind of cheated as it was kind of recursive)

Besides, thanks for the hint. I know I should have read more Asimov (as I always liked what I read) but somehoe never could quite adjust to the style somehow.

Naturally, the theories we now have might be considered wrong in the simplistic sense of my English Lit correspondent, but in a much truer and subtler sense, they need only be considered incomplete.

But the importantthing is to keep the basic humility and remember that no matter if your current knowledge is incomplete or plain wrong, one day it will be amended or rectified. And by his own logic, the diffrence between remembering that and assuming your current theory is "right" in the simplistic way, is much much larger than between "wrong" or "incomplete"

Comment: Has already been discussed in literature (Score 1) 162

by bickerdyke (#49128135) Attached to: Should a Service Robot Bring an Alcoholic a Drink?

c.f. Isaac Asimov and his laws of robotics, for example "I, Robot" (not the unrelated movie of the same title) Whatever I read so far by Asimov (not THAT much I admit) centered around such robo-ethical questions and how to circumvent them

So, according to the robot laws:

No, it SHOULD not as it would endanger a human.
Thinking this through to the end would mean that a robot should never serve any drug (down to coffee) to a human.
But yes, it would serve alcohol to an alcoholic as he would be kept from checking the contents of the brown bad it serves to the human and that has been packed by ANOTHER robot. Neither wrapping a beer bottle in a brown bag, nor fetching a brown paper bag is dangerous.

The realistic solution would be (as circumvention is that easy) to serve that drink but log it.

Comment: Re:Nice work if you can get it (Score 1) 304

by bickerdyke (#49115555) Attached to: Pandora Pays Artists $0.001 Per Stream, Thinks This Is "Very Fair"

I don't mean that it should be like that, but it would be an alternative to those multi-million development companies that are currently for big construction projects. Rental houses create a constant stream of revenue and a share of that probably would make much a bigger difference for a construction worker who build the house than dumping it on top of the pile of a nameless hedgefund.

Comment: Re:Too Much or Too Little? Economically? (Score 1) 304

by bickerdyke (#49112039) Attached to: Pandora Pays Artists $0.001 Per Stream, Thinks This Is "Very Fair"

Already posted, so please accept this +1 insightfull.

But there is one flaw: How would you measure if we have "enough" people in music creation? Do numbers count at all? What about quality? How many pop idols would be needed to outweigh a Leonard Bernstein? How many for an Elvis Presley?

Comment: Re:Nice work if you can get it (Score 1) 304

by bickerdyke (#49112005) Attached to: Pandora Pays Artists $0.001 Per Stream, Thinks This Is "Very Fair"

Why should something that generates revenue over time not be paid out the same way to the creator? A book or a movie (that is more than single-use-pulp) may be selling books and DVDs and ads in TV reruns for decades.

if you're asking for the creators to be payed upfront when the work is finsihed, you'd need to find someone who is going to finance that - paying with money that has not been earned yet.

There are certainly advantages to such a model, but it would definitly create a middleman with too much power. (Or restore the power of publishers that they are currently losing due to easier self-publishing and self-marketing online)

But I agree that the whole system is broken at several points

Comment: Re:Doesn't matter. (Score 1) 126

by bickerdyke (#49111297) Attached to: Inside the Business of Online Reputation Spin

you can't tell the difference between obvious propaganda and a news organization which tries hard to be impartial?

Of course I can do that. That's easy. The problem starts where you have to tell the difference between non-obvious propaganda and sloppy journalism due to budget reasons.

Yes, your course of action (reading and comparing multiple sources) would help, but boils down to do your own research and become your own expert, just to recognize bad newspaper articles.

And if that wouldn't be hard enough, you would have to be self-reflecting enough to recognize your own bias. Which is harder than you think, because to yourself, bias appears as knowledge. Usually of the "Everyone knows that..." or "Someone who I accept as expert once told me that..." or "It's common knowledge that.." varieties.

And it takes a really scientific mindest to accept that what you know may be completly wrong. (Our brain is wired to work with inaccurate information which is cool on its own, but the opposite of scientific)

Nothing is finished until the paperwork is done.