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Comment: How long is a "long bike ride"? (Score 1) 167

by enjar (#48420467) Attached to: Bicycle Bottle System Condenses Humidity From Air Into Drinkable Water

I've trained for (and completed) a marathon and done some long-ish bike rides (several hours), not to mention taken long hikes and hours of physical labor / yard work in both the burning heat and freezing cold. The water provided by a Camelbak or a couple bottles was enough to keep things together, and the extra weight wasn't exactly killing me or making the activity impossible. If you are decently hydrated to start with, doing an hour of reasonably difficult exercise is perfectly doable with no water at all.

Seems that this is kind of over-design for the vast majority of activity profiles -- people who work out for an hour a day are already rare enough, let alone people who work out long enough to have water weight be a significant part of the weight they are moving.

Comment: Re:from the believe-the-worst dept (Score 1) 350

by enjar (#48380061) Attached to: Debunking a Viral Internet Post About Breastfeeding Racism

Clickbait is now the dominant business model for most of the internet, as far as I can tell. People don't really give a damn about debunking, they just hit the "Share" button and pass it on to the echo chamber of their $group_of_friends who echo it back to each other and agree wildly with each other.

It's pretty much the evolution of the chain letter -> MMF/forwarded urban myths -> google finds people just like me -> FaceTwitterInterest helps even more - BuzzFeed,Upworthy,et. al generate content from the echo chamber.

Comment: Re:An interesting article by Bennett (Score 1) 350

by enjar (#48379795) Attached to: Debunking a Viral Internet Post About Breastfeeding Racism

Is it relevant to Slashdot's audience? No. Perhaps Bennett should go peddle his wares at sites where people care about racism and/or breastfeeding. What if Bennett tried shopping this post to engadget, Linux News or other popular tech/gadget/science blogs? He'd be told to go away and come back with something relevant.

If you buy that the survey methodology is relevant, you need to read a lot more about making relevant surveys. The world is awash in "studies" like this one, that would have trouble getting through a high school science fair.

Comment: from the believe-the-worst dept (Score 3, Informative) 350

by enjar (#48379587) Attached to: Debunking a Viral Internet Post About Breastfeeding Racism

"Bennett Haselton writes"

Yep. Checks out. But I don't believe it.

I also don't understand the point of this post. Is Slashdot hoping to get picked up on HuffPo and on a bunch of mommy blogger sites? I don't really see how Bennett's keyboard diarrhea this week is anything remotely related to "News for Nerds".

Comment: Cut the cord in 2010 ... have not looked back (Score 1) 392

by enjar (#48269675) Attached to: Cutting the Cord? Time Warner Loses 184,000 TV Subscribers In One Quarter

Cable TV provided so little value for the money all I've noticed is the thousands of dollars I've saved over the years. With Netflix, Amazon Prime and an antenna, I've not really missed anything of value.

I'm just waiting for the other shoe to drop when the last bastion of why anyone would pay for cable -- live sports -- starts to have an effective streaming model that Joe Sixpack can easily use. The current model with blackouts and IP restrictions that require VPNs and other nonsense throw up too many barriers for many to figure out. Drop those barriers and many people lose the last reason they have cable, since it's largely disposable "reality" series filling the 400 channels that are received, and the quality stuff can be found by other means.

Comment: Don't hate the player (Score 1) 255

Hate the game.

I'll wager that Ballmer doesn't actually know much about his taxes. He pays someone (or, more likely, a group of someones) to figure out his tax return. Their job is to make sure he pays what he owes and not a penny more. I make considerably less than Ballmer but I also employ an accountant to do my tax return versus doing it myself. I expect her to advise me on how to pay the correct amount. I'm not looking to get audited or get sent to jail for tax fraud, but on the same token I have many other uses for my own money that don't involve paying taxes. My wife runs her own business and also uses the same accountant, who advises her on what deductions she can take and which ones she cannot.

I would personally like to see the US tax code vastly simplified. Much like trying to debug horribly written spaghetti code, the sheer complexity and length of it (IIRC it is will over 30K printed pages at this point) makes effective auditing difficult, if not impossible. As others have mentioned, the "fairness" comes into question when people (including corporations, because they are people, too!) of enormous wealth are lowering their rates considerably using these strategies. I think everyone on some level knows that some level of taxation is required to pay for roads, court systems and other services we like here in the first world -- but people get pissed off when they see anyone (rich or poor) who seems to be abusing the system -- from welfare fraud all the way up to billion dollar tax dodges.

Comment: Lots of weasel words in there (Score 4, Insightful) 167

by enjar (#48213251) Attached to: Ello Formally Promises To Remain Ad-Free, Raises $5.5M

"user-specific" = "we are going to sell aggregated data"

"on behalf of a third party" = "we are going to get direct ad sales up and running soon"

#3 is just hysterical ... if they get acquired, they lose the right to any such thing as they become a wholly owned subsidiary, subject to whatever policies the parent company deems fit. As if it hasn't already happened about a billion times by startups who did one thing, then were bought up and summarily dismantled. Ello makes a false assumption that people give a damn about their product. An acquiring company may see it as a way to get a seasoned dev/qe team and shutter the service entirely. The examples of plucky startups that got pulled into the Apple/Google/Microsoft/$GINORMOUS_COMPANY orbit and summarily forgotten or dissolved is pretty big.

Comment: Re:We need to do it lke Europe. (Score 3, Insightful) 120

by enjar (#48196841) Attached to: Overwhelmed By Recall For Deadly Airbags

I've received a few recall notices over the years for the cars I own. I followed the instructions on the form, made an appointment with the dealer, dropped the car off, then they did their thing. I never had to pay a dime.

You might be confusing a recall with a technical service bulletin. They are not the same, although a TSB can turn into a recall in certain cases -- and that happened in one case, for which I was refunded the money I'd paid for the service. All the recall notices I've received have had language on them to this effect, that if you repaired the car on your own dime (and can product a receipt) that they will reimburse you.

And if you buy a used car, it's probably worth the time to check for recalls. It's a similar situation for any consumer product you might pick up off Craigslist or from a private sale. We have a couple of kids and children's products are also notorious for this, since there's quite a "hand me down" / "cash sale" market that exists when your kids outgrow something and you don't need it any more.

God doesn't play dice. -- Albert Einstein