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Comment Re:Great (Score 2) 44

How's this, in the last 10 years, what if instead you didn't have 4G / LTE etc, instead you just still had "inefficient EDGE" BUT unlimited data, all month long, endlessly?

You mean... what if the cellphone carriers didn't take advantage of any of the advances in technology that had happened, and just gave us the same shit sandwich they were giving us 11 years ago?

I'd be pretty pissed about that completely different situation too. I'd say to them "Look, why not use the new spectrum the government is opening up for you, use something really efficient like LTE, and offer us more bandwidth for the same cost given we're paying you the same amount of money now as we were when you were still upgrading your network?"

Technology has improved. You'd expect that to result in actual improvements beyond being able to see a web page render more quickly on your mobile. We know capacity has improved, so why can't we access it?

Comment Re:Interesting. (Score 1) 195

It's surprising that China has not been more forceful with NK. China's leadership are all closet capitalists and are very pragmatic. Every move NK makes only increases the size of the US military footprint in the region. Japan and SK are requesting the US to deploy missile defense batteries in the region. Missile defense systems that could very easily be used to degrade China's offensive and defensive missile forces. That is the last thing China wants to see.

I have been to both countries and talked with average citizens of both. The west vastly overestimates China's influence over the DPRK. North Korea might have been China's puppet 60 years ago, but that is not the case now. China is the DPRK's biggest trade partner, they know it, and they abuse that situation at every opportunity.

China has the longest land border of any country, and they border with 14 sovereign states (tied with Russia). They don't want any more adversaries on their doorstep, especially western-friendly ones. If Korea reunited, the north half of the country would probably become more and more democratic, and be open to the influence of the US. China does not want that. If North Korea's economy improved, they would be a low-cost competitor to Chinese industries. China does not have any incentive to act in the best interests of North Korea. They have a large interest in keeping North Korea a poor, isolated, backwater nation.

All of this creates a situation where China is intentionally holding North Korea down, trying to bully them around, and generally not being a good neighbor. After decades of this, why would North Korea take China seriously when it appears that China just wants to hold them back? China and North Korea are not best buddies like many people seem to think. At best, their relationship resembles the US-Mexico relationship, except that the border actually does have a fence, and China made North Korea build it.

Comment Re:Interesting. (Score 1) 195

Yea, no way that could go wrong says the guy who clearly doesn't live in Seoul, South Korea with their family and all their assets within marching distance from over a million North Korean soldiers.

Are you speaking from personal experience? Are you genuinely afraid? I have been to North Korea and the idea that they are a serious threat to the southern part of the peninsula is laughable. They face not one, but two powerful armies on the same border. Their military is woefully out of date, and despite their pride, they do recognize that they don't stand much of a chance in a fight against the combined South Korean and US militaries. China does NOT have their back on almost any issue. The China-DPRK relationship looks a lot more like the US-Mexico relationship. They do collaborate on some things, but there is a lot of resentment, conflict over illegal immigration/smuggling, distrust, and dissatisfaction with the relationship on both sides.

North Korea's large standing army is quite misleading. North Korea is basically run like a large company with many departments and subsidiaries. The military is one of those departments, but a large amount of their work is not spent training for war, but building and maintaining infrastructure. They also pitch in on the farms. The military is loaned out to other government agencies whenever manpower is needed, which seems to be all the time. The bulk of the DPRK military resembles an unmechanized US Army Corp of Engineers more than a professional fighting force.

North Korea's aggressive attitude in international politics is a front to hide weakness. If you visit the country, you can see fairly quickly that their military doctrine and assets are set up like Japan in Spring 1945, not Japan of the early 1930s. The military is running the country, they will defend their country, possibly to the last man, if attacked, but launching an invasion themselves is just not on the table. The international diplomacy game that they play is similar to a cornered animal showing their teeth. They're scared of being invaded, and they don't want that. Cat's don't hiss when they are ready to pounce. They hiss when they want to be left alone.

Comment Re:Sounds good... (Score 5, Informative) 109

Here in the desert, water is a BIG issue.

Not really. If it was, they'd stop the farmers growing Alfalfa in the California deserts, then exporting it to China. The "BIG issue" is an utterly broken antiquated system of pre-1914 water rights.

I just spent 2 weeks in the Imperial Valley in Fall 2015, and 2 more weeks in the last month. You can drive through there but you can't really appreciate how damaging that style of industrial farming is to the environment until you actually go there. They are basically farming in a dust bowl by using open canal irrigation. The pesticides and fertilizer drain into the Salton Sea, an accidentally-created manmade body of water, which is drying up. As it dries up, a lot of the salts and chemicals in the water turn into a very fine dust. I drove out to the Salton Sea itself on a windy day and it looked like something straight out of Fallout 3. I could see no difference between the landscape there now and a nuclear wasteland. It's an ecological disaster. I've been to industrial farm towns all over the USA and I've never seen industrial farming like that before. The fact that it is allowed to continue to exist in California, of all states, just boggles my mind. And I work in coal power plants.

The refrain I heard often was "we grow xx% (double digit number) of the nation's fresh fruits and vegetables!". I am not going to dispute the figures. It isn't hard to gain a huge chunk of the market if you have free/cheap water, 350 days of sun, and an endless supply of cheap immigrant labor, however. That is a rare set of circumstances, and there isn't a farmer anywhere in the US that can compete against that.

Comment Re:Win3.x Win8.x (Score 2) 97

I'm finding it fairly amusing that Windows 3.x actually looks quite fresh and, ugly pre-anti-aliasing font aside, fairly modern. Which is odd because at the time, as a user of AmigaOS 2.04 at home, I thought it looked clumsy and ugly (and everyone else started to agree about the look of Windows 3.x when Windows 95 came out.)

There's a lot of flatness to the Windows 3.x UI, which is something that's in vogue again.

Comment Re:Sounds good... (Score 1) 109

Put another way, this is approximately big enough to power the laundry room for a small apartment complex, or approximately the worst-case total power for 1-2 households.

Nobody's household ever uses 25kW (50kW / 2). I could turn on every single appliance in my apartment, AC on full blast, PCs at full load, hairdrier's drying, and the dryer on high heat and I come up with much less than 10kW.

The parent poster was correct when they estimated a 1500W heater. That's close the average household load of 1200-1800W, depending on the geographic location.

Comment Re: Then what's the point? (Score 5, Informative) 260

Again, though, that misses the point. You offer a prize to hack an insecure browser as a means of shaming the browser's developer. That's how it worked, and more to the point, that's why it worked. Have the Pwn2Own folks perhaps lost sight of that original purpose?

Obviously Firefox wasn't shamed last year, or they would have tried to improve security. Instead, they made a bunch of useless UI changes, removed features, etc. They didn't get the message. Spending large amounts of money to send them the same message again would be a wasted effort. By ignoring them this year, Pwn2Own is sending an even stronger message that Firefox is a browser to be avoided. And it doesn't cost them any prize money to send that message.

Comment Re:Then what's the point? (Score 1) 260

I thought Pwn2Own was supposed to be all about shaming vendors into cleaning up their act. If Firefox's security is really so poor, then shouldn't these guys be directing more resources toward it, rather than less?

Is this not a large part of how Microsoft was pressured into finally making certain decisions which, while clearly necessary, were very inconvenient from its own perspective? Why are we to believe that it would not work again?

Why would they do that? Firefox is losing market share and has spent a lot of effort in the past year degrading the user experience. It seems they did not make security a priority whatsoever, despite being in last place last year. Why would Pwn2Own offer prize money for Firefox exploits? That only serves to send a message that companies can slash the security budget of their browser and someone else will pick up the tab in identifying exploits.

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