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Comment: Re:Units! (Score 1) 176

Screen sizes are given in inches in New Zealand, though the country is metric for everything else. I don't know for sure, but my guess is that would be the same in Australia. When I was there, I did not go shopping for a screen.

New Zealand converted to metric in 1969. Many people still alive remember the Imperial units used before then (and there are lots of UK immigrants and lots of UK and US television and movies), so references to older units are still understood by most people in everyday conversation. For instance, fuel efficiency in automobiles is still referred to commonly as "mileage".

Comment: Re:Silly Peasants (Score 4, Interesting) 142

The same kind of process is currently on-going with respect to the TPPA (Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement). Negotiations have been going on behind closed doors for years. Only a few leaks give a hint as to what is coming.

So far, the leaks indicate that the US has let loose the corporate dogs, particularly in big Pharma and Agriculture, to snarl and threaten the peaceful existence of the smaller countries involved.

Comment: Re:Short Sighted (Score 2) 232

by geezer nerd (#47022781) Attached to: Programmers: It's OK To Grow Up
Yup. In 1999 I was almost 57 and got laid off. One company I sent my resume to completely refused to talk to me because my resume showed no Visual Basic experience. The fact they told me so was phenomenally unusual.

Then a former boss snapped me up at his new company when he heard I was available. The first day on the job, I was helping a young developer write some test code in Visual Basic. While I had never tried to use Visual Basic before, the issues being dealt with were matters of logic and algorithm, not syntax.

After that for my own work, I worked with Java, Javascript, CSS, HTML, Perl, VXML, XSLT, and a host of other technologies that were more recently on the scene. I retired at 63, still going strong.

Comment: Re:...news for nerds.. (Score 1) 405

by geezer nerd (#46830279) Attached to: In a Hole, Golf Courses Experiment With 15-inch Holes
Golf meets these requirements handily. I try to play and run up against these pesky requirements all the time!

Golf *is* different from other sports like long-distance running, etc. And golf is being included in the next Olympics. I would say it compares with biathlon in the Winter Olympics.

Comment: Re:Over 18 (Score 1) 632

by geezer nerd (#46764355) Attached to: IRS Can Now Seize Your Tax Refund To Pay a Relative's Debt
The US sets the rules under which a citizen can renounce citizenship. Those rules include an "exit tax" and continuing tax liability on earnings made on assets which remain in the US.

The exit tax seems to consist of "marking to market" all of the renouncer's assets in the US and taxing the resulting amount including "deemed" gains as of the date of renunciation. For folks sitting on long-term IRAs and 401Ks, this "exit tax" would be brutal.

A quick Google search led me to this source of information: http://m.klgates.com/files/Pub...

Comment: Re:Over 18 (Score 1) 632

by geezer nerd (#46754549) Attached to: IRS Can Now Seize Your Tax Refund To Pay a Relative's Debt
In my 8 years of filing US returns from overseas, I have not found it particularly difficult. I use TurboTax. Starting with the 2012 tax year, they started allowing e-File even if your address is outside the US.

You do have to be a bit careful about deductions, as donations to foreign charities are not deductible to the same rules as for US charities, and you have to be clear about taxes you paid in your country of residence. Some may not be deductible.

Comment: Re:Over 18 (Score 2) 632

by geezer nerd (#46754521) Attached to: IRS Can Now Seize Your Tax Refund To Pay a Relative's Debt
Nothing you say says that Mr Saverin has gotten away from his US tax liability. Only by renouncing citizenship can one end the tax liability, and even that continues for some years (10 I think) after the renouncement.

I am a US citizen living in a foreign country, and I do indeed file two tax returns every year. I have no intent ever to renounce US citizenship. Even with all its bumps and warts, US citizenship is still my birthright, and something I cherish.

The US tax rules allow for lots of deductions, exemptions, credits, etc - so sometimes my tax bill is zero. My country of residence taxes pretty much anything it can see. What I especially don't like is that it taxes the UNREALIZED gain on my US retirement funds each year. It does not tax US Social Security retirement benefits, however.

Comment: Re:infects 50 million, eh? (Score 1) 71

by geezer nerd (#46712101) Attached to: The Amoeba That Eats Human Intestines, Cell By Cell
My grandfather had amoebic dysentery for years. It left him a debilitated husk when he died in 1956.

Apparently he acquired the infection when drinking stream water while hunting for food for his family sometime during the 1920s. There was no effective treatment back then, so he just suffered.

Not particularly something to have fun with.

There is nothing so easy but that it becomes difficult when you do it reluctantly. -- Publius Terentius Afer (Terence)

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