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Comment: Re:I wonder if Google has made themselves vulnerab (Score 1) 256

by bill_mcgonigle (#48937853) Attached to: Microsoft To Invest In Rogue Android Startup Cyanogen

Google had problems with getting updates out to devices

And with just a little bit of developer money, so many devices out there could be running a safe, secure version of Android instead of being merely abandoned and left vulnerable ("you luddites running six-month-old phones...").

I've been waiting to see a nonprofit that would sponsor such work and then sell decent smartphones to people who could use them to benefit themselves economically. People throw away ("recycle") perfectly good hardware because the software is too dated.

Oh, I know, "that dual core phone from last year with only half a gig of RAM just can't do anything useful...."

Comment: Re:"Rogue"? (Score 4, Insightful) 256

by bill_mcgonigle (#48937809) Attached to: Microsoft To Invest In Rogue Android Startup Cyanogen

Google is quite happy to see CM and similar third party ROMs flourish

Flourish or tolerate? Honest question. I've seen entire ROMs stymied by small things Google could/should have done as just a decent vendor, regardless of the ROM in question. For instance, a couple years ago the Droid3 port fizzed because the then-Google-owned Motorola wouldn't talk to anybody about releasing specs to turn on the camera.

Comment: Re:track record (Score 1) 281

by bill_mcgonigle (#48935901) Attached to: US Air Force Selects Boeing 747-8 To Replace Air Force One

To the military I say: buy the best on the market, with a proven track record, with a slight bias for buying local.

Not here - the DoD is spending $2B to design a new rifle, rather than just adopt the AK74M, which has all the features it wants and many allies already use.

"'Cause commies, son."

Comment: MDisc (Score 1) 250

by bill_mcgonigle (#48918659) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Medium For Personal Archive?

Asking myself the same question, I went with MDisc technology, in the BluRay capacity, in addition to my hard drive backups. MDisc uses an inorganic pigment as opposed to the organic dyes that are common on CD/DVD/BluRay recordables (and degrade over time).

I'll do an MDisc burn every year and move it offsite, to keep with the 4TB ZFS drive I rotate offsite weekly. The MDisc won't get my mp3 or mp4 files, but the stuff I can't recreate.

My best idea currently is to write PAR files of loop-back mounted LUKS volumes and include the PAR software source and ISO of the distro on the disc, in case I need the data in 20 years (emulators should be readily available for 2015 hardware).

I needed a BluRay writer anyway, so I went with this LG and it's been a great drive so far, and at the right price point for me.

Comment: Re:Success! (Score 0) 94

by bill_mcgonigle (#48915879) Attached to: FCC Fines Verizon For Failing To Investigate Rural Phone Problems

Until the fines are set to a level to remove all profit and THEN put a punishment on top, large business will continue to flout the law because it's more profitable.

You're absolutely right on the theory, but then take the next step to recognize that it's the purpose of government to ensure their profits and help them take money from us (in addition to the FCC taking money from us directly and giving it to the telco corporations).

This is evidenced by these fines never having been at a level such as you describe and, more recently, the move to no-plead agreements between prosecutors and corporations. You'll be shouting from your wheelchair in a retirement home that the government should increase fines on corporations to be proportional to their income, unless the fundamental bases of the system are changed.

Of course, if you do something wrong on the scale of millions of dollars of damage, you go to prison. If a corporation does something similarly wrong, they pay out some pocket change. Because "corporations are people, my friend."

Comment: Re:You know... (Score 3, Informative) 33

by bill_mcgonigle (#48911117) Attached to: Getting Charged Up Over Chargers at CES (Video)

Every dollar store sells USB wall chargers

Speaking of that - maybe everybody knows this already but it had escaped my attention - I was getting annoyed that my phone charges very fast with the Samsung charger/cable but rather slowly with the well-rated 2A charger I bought off Amazon.

The issue was my dollar-store cables. Long story short, there is 28/28 gauge wire inside cheap cables and the resistance means they can only pull 500mA. The electronics at both ends are smart enough to figure this out. What you need is a
28/24 cable and then you can get a fast charge.

I'm using Galaxy Charging Current Lite to measure my existing USB cables and tossing the ones that can't handle at least 1.3A. This helps with my over-stuffed box of USB cables too.

Comment: Re:Salary versus cost of living in each city (Score 0) 136

by bill_mcgonigle (#48892555) Attached to: By the Numbers: The Highest-Paying States For Tech Professionals

The gag is that the seriously wealthy aren't worried about Obama's new tax policies, because they can afford a tax lawyer who can prove that they earn nothing.

If you haven't been paying attention for the past few millennia, the purpose of government is to transfer resources from the masses to the few. I know, they don't tell that to the masses in their indoctrination centers, but if you look at all available evidence, it's pretty clear.

Sure, they throw a few bones to the dogs to make sure they don't turn on their owners, but look at every available trend and analyze the data.

Comment: Re:I have an even better idea (Score 0, Troll) 304

by bill_mcgonigle (#48892529) Attached to: Government Recommends Cars With Smarter Brakes

Let's just enforce existing laws and get dangerous drivers off the road.

Correct.

THERE IS NO RIGHT TO DRIVE.

Stop acting brainwashed. The Right to Travel is a fundamental human right. Go check out the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that your government probably signed on to if you don't believe me. It does not mean that humans have a right to crawl through the muddy forests to get from place to place - it means all humans have the fundamental right to travel in the common manner of a society. Whether that's a donkey cart or an SUV with DVD Entertainment System or an Airbus A340.

There are even places where automobile travel is the only allowed method of travel - we have an area around here where the local road was taken over for an Interstate and the only way in or out is an exit.

If you are a dangerous driver you can and should be taken off the road.

Correct. There's a mechanism for that.

No person shall ... be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law

The Right to Travel is a fundamental liberty and we have a way to deal with taking away liberties for the protection of society. It doesn't require parroting some bullshit statist rhetoric your phys ed. teacher told you in high school.

Now your insurance company - they ought to have a lot to say about your competency as a driver. Sadly, they almost never do, except in aggregate, such as very high insurance rates in MA where the passing grade on a DMV test is 60%. You ought to be able to save $400 a year if you score 95% or better, but no ... that wouldn't be _fair_. Regulators gotta regulate, whether it does harm or not, so everybody pays high rates and the incentives to improve are eliminated.

Comment: Re:Why would anyone buy something from those catal (Score 3, Insightful) 65

by bill_mcgonigle (#48892427) Attached to: Smartphones, Tablets and EBay Send SkyMall To Chapter 11

Long before those things ever existed people weren't buying SkyMall's useless, overpriced crap.

Obviously false, since people don't stay in a business for decades just to piss away money.

However, the economy is the worst it's been in 60 years (vis-a-vis age-discounted labor participation rates) and so there's just less of a pool of money to waste.

Skymall took some cream off the top but we're down to whole milk now.

Smartphones might have helped it along, but there are people posting here about reading the catalog for entertainment because they couldn't figure out how to bring a book with them on the airplane. Those people aren't planning ahead on their phones either.

Seen on a button at an SF Convention: Veteran of the Bermuda Triangle Expeditionary Force. 1990-1951.

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