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Comment: A Poetic Simulation? (Score 1) 745

by cmholm (#46262429) Attached to: Mathematician: Is Our Universe a Simulation?

We are a pattern recognizing species. Mathematics is but a means of description, of writing out the patterns we see. Another is spoken or written prose, or poetry. Are we a poetic imagining within the mind of a (relatively) god-like Li Bai/Hafez/Yeats. Anthropocentrism by any other name would seem as likely.

Comment: 1995: "Unbundle The OS, 2014: "Unbundle The H/w" (Score 3, Interesting) 249

by cmholm (#46183661) Attached to: Wozniak To Apple: Consider Building an Android Phone

The margins on Android phones are razor thin. Apple has complete control over the iPhone, giving them a plausible rationale for marketing a premium phone. If they release an Android phone, that rationale evaporates.

How well has Nokia made out since dumping Symbion and MeeGo for someone else's OS? Yeah, that bad.

Comment: Fahrenheit 451 Opening Sequence (Score 1) 212

by cmholm (#45867887) Attached to: First US Public Library With No Paper Books Opens In Texas

Moments after the enabling regulations for the Banning Of Other Known Sources of Sufficiently Unverified Codexes ("BOOKS SUC") Act of 2051 are published, e-book readers across the nation delete all content excepting certain approved technical references. Subsequently, the long work of weeding out the hoarded dead tree editions begins.

Comment: De Industrializing Australia (Score 1) 122

by cmholm (#45687845) Attached to: Australia's National Broadband Network Downgraded

The current national Liberal Party policy seems to be limited to 1) balance the budget without added revenue, and 2) cut revenues they don't feel they should collect. The result is that the mining tax will go away, and due to very low tariffs and deletion of subsidies that ameliorate the effects of the strong AU$ that Aussie ores create, most manufacturing will go away. Ford and Holden closing up shop is just part of the trend.

So, yah want an information economy to go with those fries? Sorry mate, costs more than we want to spend, and what would you do with all that bandwidth, anyway? You don't know, you say? Back in my day, dialup was good enough. What does YouTube have to do with it?

Comment: Free Rider (Score 1) 629

by cmholm (#45547897) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Are We Older Experts Being Retired Too Early?

> No paperwork. No taxes. No health insurance. No legal liability.

It would appear that ShanghaiBill is either a free rider. If he were hiring locally in Pakistan or China, he might be able to avoid some of these "costs", but not all. In fact, there would be additional costs, in the form of bribes and kickbacks to get his infrastructure up and stay up, poor security for his person, and arbitrary application of laws, regulations, and jurisprudence when he comes in contact with organs on the government. Instead, Bill huddles within the relative safety what I'll assume is an OECD member state, probably the US, and skates on covering a good portion of the costs that make his cozy existence possible.

What an amoral fucker. All "Wealth of Nations", without the "Theory of Moral Sentiments".

Comment: Gold Bug Strawman (Score 3, Interesting) 532

by cmholm (#44978221) Attached to: I'd prefer my money be made of ...

...so, the guy with the bananas ate all but one of his, and said the last one cost five coconuts.

"Fiat" currency is a tool. Broadly, it causes inflation when supply exceeds demand, and deflation when demand exceeds supply. Ideally, a little bit of inflation is good, in that it encourages a moderate level of use (investment, consumption), leading to real economic growth.

A tangible currency made from a limited supply of raw material tends towards deflation, which encourages hoarding, which discourages use, leading to real economic contraction.

Comment: Letting Go Of A Child's World View (Score 1) 1293

by cmholm (#44900621) Attached to: Why Are Some Hell-Bent On Teaching Intelligent Design?

I believe the core issue that those such as the Texas board members struggle with isn't with scientific evidence of a particular theory, but rather the conclusions that some choose to draw from that evidence. A child's perception of God and Nature is necessarily challenged as she matures. Some resolve that struggle by denying God, some by denying what is discovered during study of God's creation. Some from the board have evidently taken the later course, which reminds me of a quote from Augustine of Hippo, who wrote in part:

"It is too disgraceful and ruinous, though, and greatly to be avoided, that [the non-Christian] should hear a Christian speaking so idiotically on these matters, and as if in accord with Christian writings, that he might say that he could scarcely keep from laughing when he saw how totally in error they are."

Anyone can do any amount of work provided it isn't the work he is supposed to be doing at the moment. -- Robert Benchley

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