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Comment Re:Its the blockchain not the bitcoin (Score 1) 114

If you mean a majority, the number you're probably looking for is 50%.

In any event, you can reverse a transaction for a short amount of time with less than half. Even just 35% gives you a fighting chance of reversing a block for some tens of minutes sometime during the day, enough time to defraud a retail store.

So probably just call it the block-reversal attack.

Comment Re:Not the only factor? (Score 1) 324

Prices aren't just a function of supply, they're also function of demand (what the market can bear). Since a model with more storage is more desirable, the price will increase more than proportionally.

Or put it this way: A 0 GB iPhone would be throughly useless, so it wouldn't sell for $200, it would sell for near zero.

Another way: when combined with the rest of a phone that can actually make use of said storage, the additional storage becomes more valuable than it otherwise would.

There shouldn't be anything unusual about this. Profiting is literally the act of making something more valuable than the sum of its parts, including labor. And likewise, you're said to take a loss when you make something less than the sum of its parts (thereby destroying value).

Comment Re:Economics a "hard science"? (Score 1) 157

I'm not quite sure what you're referring to, Black-Scholes describes how to price futures contracts, and it does remarkably well at doing that. It's just based on the rate of interest, which should seem obvious.

Generally when it fails, it's because of a faulty assumption, same as assuming zero air resistance and zero friction at low speeds in physics, right. Usually it's good enough, many times it's not.

The difference is in economics we can actually mathematically prove the theorem when the initial assumptions are true. Air resistance and such is experimentally tested, not proven.

Comment Re:Better not look at the "social" sciences then.. (Score 1) 157

Hmmm. Not necessarily. You can apply economics to any situation where multiple, scarce resources must be allocated to autonomous consumers based on some criteria.

Suppose I have resources A and B. To accomplish task Y I'd need 2 A or 3 B; and to accomplish task Z I'd need 3 A and 5 B.

It doesn't matter if A/B is RAM/HDD or doctors/nurses. Economics says that, even though A is better at both tasks than B, it'll actually be cheapest to deploy B to task Y if and deploy A to task Z.

It's really no different than saying to get from point M to N, I'd need 10 Joules of energy based on some physics calculations.

Human economics happens to be the hardest because because there's no rational basis for our wants, they're completely arbitrary and can't be measured. I'm not sure if there's a name that makes a distinction between human wants and other wants, though.

Comment Re:Better not look at the "social" sciences then.. (Score 1) 157

Economics could only be considered a social science to the extent it deals with the interactions of trade between people, and the objective results of people with different subjective desires.

Economics can also be one of the hardest sciences there is, on par with kinematics: Economics invented game theory, and has many mathematical theorems, like the Law of Supply and Demand, the Law of Comparative Advantage, and the Black-Scholes model.

Comment Re:No government role? (Score 3, Insightful) 145

Well, generally it's a good thing that we have an independent judiciary. It ensures that they don't get caught up in the mob's favorite punching bag of the moment.

The problem here is that a judiciary is only supposed to hear cases of controversy: That means there has to be two sides, and the case can't go on if there's no one to prosecute.

In other words, if what they are saying is true, this means the Turkish courts are effectively judge AND prosecutor.

Comment Re:Should corporations be above national law? (Score 1) 728

Of course slaves have rights. They're just being violated. If slavery is legal, then they're also being violated by the police and the government. There should be nothing unusual about this notion that the government can violate one's rights, too.

If I have one person on an island, can that person be enslaved? Is there any way their rights can be violated at all? The answer is simply no.

Suppose we add more people to this island. It doesn't change anything, except now you have multiple people who want to claim the same scarce resources, and can thus violate each other's rights.

An enslaved person has rights, they never go away, they're just being violated by all the rest of society.

Comment Re:Should corporations be above national law? (Score 1) 728

So then murder is OK so long as I can successfully get away with it. Got it.

How about throwing someone into a jail cell? What about throwing someone in a jail cell because they said something objectionable?

Because what you're saying is, so long as no one opposes me, that's totally cool. Uh huh.

Who says what is legitimate? The "people", are you serious?

What about an island with one person? It's impossible for anyone's rights to be violated, there's nobody else to violate them!

What about an island with two people? Can one kill the other?

What about a totalitarian government ran by a tiny minority? They don't have "the People's will".

What about a court that strikes down (refuses to enforce) an overwhelmingly popular law in a democracy?

If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.

People tend not to question the laws of gravity, because when they do, they tend to end up mangled. The same thing happens for questioning the basic laws of economics. If you have no objective mechanism for deciding who is right to act on what, the outcome isn't generally very pleasant.

Comment Re:Should corporations be above national law? (Score 1) 728

Nothing about "natural right" implies that it enforces itself. Quite the contrary. If rights enforced themselves, they'd be called "laws", surely you're familiar with the law of gravitation.

A right defines what sort of moral or ethical claims you have on other people. If you have the right to free speech, then no one may (lawfully|ethically|morally) use violence against you for speaking. Different people have different ideas on how to protect these rights, of course, but you get the idea.

Comment Re:Should corporations be above national law? (Score 1) 728

The US Constitution says: Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech [emphasis mine]

The Constitution didn't create a "freedom of speech", it's protecting one that pre-exists.

Just because people (typically police, but any individual) have been known to abridge the freedom of speech doesn't make it any less of a natural right.

Comment Re:Should corporations be above national law? (Score 1) 728

The point is everyone has the freedom of speech.

The fact that Facebook is in a better position than individuals to resist state coercion to the contrary is besides the point.

People don't magically gain rights because they form together in a group. Employees of Facebook and police in Germany alike don't gain any ability to silence people or kill people, any more than you or I could.

Going the speed of light is bad for your age.