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Comment Re:I knew it. (Score 1) 394

I installed Windows 10 in a VM on my Mac in order to find out whether the software I need to use will work correctly. Since it is older software, it does not need any network connection of any kind except to activate it. It works just fine so far. I see no advantage of Windows 10 over my day to day use of Windows 7, also on a VM. Other than the original installation, I can and do unplug both versions of Windows from the Internet. It may be that five years or less, it will be impossible to buy any software that will work independently, without an Internet connection.

Comment Re:Easiest question all week. (Score 1) 252

I would buy a car right now that would drive autonomously on freeways only. Driving on city streets and highways has much more chance for unforeseen circumstances. Having the ability to get on a freeway in San Francisco in the evening and waking up in LA in the morning would seem to me is presently within the technology's grasp. Fully autonomous driving everywhere is technically and legally still a ways off.

Comment Re: i haven't bought a car in a while... (Score 1) 252

I learned to drive in San Francisco in a three speed stick shift vehicle. The test for drivers license involved starting on a steep hill WITHOUT rolling back and also parallel parking on that hill. Anyone failing to do both of those things automatically failed the test. I managed to do it on my first try! Nowadays many people don't even know how to drive a standard shift car anymore.

Comment Re:Social mobility was killed, but not this way (Score 1) 1032

It used to be that employers would have apprenticeship programs, to which young people could apply and get trained for the kind of job that would benefit the employer and the employee. Nowadays, multibillion dollar companies expect the employees to pay for their own training. Since that job training is expensive they have managed to roll off that expense onto the public through government guaranteed loans and public education.

Public education should lay the groundwork such as the 3Rs, history and other general education subjects, not job training for the future employees of multibillion-dollar corporations. They should be required to pay that as a normal business expense. University level education should be divorced entirely from the ability of people to obtain a job in the business/industrial world. If someone wants to get a degree in a liberal arts subject, they should pay for that themselves. The taxpayer should not be on the hook for that sort of thing.

Comment Re: Funny, that spin... (Score 1) 421

//Can human beings create software that complex?//

Not likely until someone can create software something like an OS that is totally bug free and completely un-hackable. Any and all software that has ever been written by humans that is slightly more complex than "hello world" has been riddled with bugs.

Comment Re:Combined with solar (Score 1) 299

We have a large, not too well insulated old house here on our farm as well as a large workshop, barn, irrigation pumps etc. and everything runs on electricity. There is no gas or oil heat. Last fall I installed a 20 k peak grid tie PV generating system. The farm would use up to 200 kWh/day. Now on a good sunny spring day, that solar generator is pumping over 130 kWh into the grid. Even on a cloudy, rainy day we still get about 50 kWh. The people that installed the solar system figured that it will have paid for itself in 8 to 10 years at present electricity prices. In the summertime it also helps the power company even out their peak load.

Comment Same as zero point energy? (Score 1) 236

Matter and energy are convertible one into the other. Is what scientists call dark matter/dark energy the same as "zero point energy"? Zero point energy is what is left in a container that has been emptied of all matter and then cooled to absolute zero. This energy has been measured and verified to exist. It pervades all space, including the spaces between the particles of atoms. Zero point energy is what limits how much a signal can be amplified and is the reason why liquid helium cannot be made solid without great pressure. There are many other known effects.

Comment Caller ID is a great invention! (Score 1) 79

Why is it necessary to write software or invent something that already exists? It is caller ID. When we get any phone call from anyone, we look at the caller ID. In fact our phone ANNOUNCES the caller ID information. Anyone we do not recognize can only talk to the phone company’s computer, the one that runs voicemail. Most Robo callers do not leave any message and the few that do are easily erased. The legitimate calls that get routed to voicemail are then replied to in the appropriate manner.

Comment Re:Since when are terms of service court enforced? (Score 1) 77

That is unfortunately true in the US. Even when they don't have a leg to stand on legally and know quite well, those with deep pockets will still pursue those with little or no money in court. Even just the threat of a lawsuit by a well financed plaintiff is often enough to get a favorable settlement out of a defendant long before the matter ever gets to court. In some other jurisdictions such as Europe, lawyers get paid in the same way plumbers do, so much per hour. That greatly reduces the incentive of greedy lawyers to bring frivolous lawsuits.

Comment Re:Since when are terms of service court enforced? (Score 1) 77

Since when does the clicking the mouse on a computer constitute a contract? For a contract to be valid both parties must be IDENTIFIED unambiguously. This is essentially impossible over the Internet. To make a valid, enforceable contract the participants also must be over 18 years old.

Anyone can click a mouse attached to a computer. Getting people to think that a click of the mouse on the computer screen is a valid contract is another one of the many fictions that lawyers have foisted upon gullible, uneducated people.

Comment Since when are terms of service court enforced? (Score 1) 77

So they are violating Yelp’s terms of service!? Since when have anybody's terms of service been enforceable in a court of law? It is immoral to lie, but of course it's not illegal, because politicians do it all the time. So why should it be illegal to pay somebody to post fiction on the Internet? Maybe some lying politician will introduce a bill to make it illegal?

Comment Re:Leap hour (Score 1) 289

From 1972 to 1979 they added one second to every year. At that rate, and 1 million years that would amount to 1 million seconds. That is total silliness. It would mean that 1 million years ago it took 11 ½ of our days for the earth to turn on its axis once! It seems that the atomic clock is totally an accurate long-term.

Comment Re:Leap hour (Score 1) 289

According to this link referenced in the article,

“From 1972 to 1979, at least one second was added every year. Leap seconds were added six times throughout the 1980s. But there will only have been four leap seconds added since 1999.”

This means that something very fishy is going on because this can add up to a very large error over time. In only seven years from 1972 to 1979 seven seconds were added! This means that at this rate of change, 13,797 seconds would have to be added to the day at the beginning of year 1. That comes to 3.83 hours in time of Christ! I cannot envision that the Roman’s day was almost 4 hours longer than ours! I suspect that the Earth’s rotation does not change by anywhere near that much if at all. Atomic clocks are extremely accurate short-term, but it seems from this data that their long term accuracy leaves a lot to be desired.

Comment Re:Why are medallions sold and not leased? (Score 1) 329

This works with broadcast station licenses also. These days no one can get themselves a radio transmitter and associated equipment, apply to the FCC for a broadcasting license and get on the air. All possible licenses in a given area have already been given out by the FCC decades ago. This means that anyone who wants to become a broadcaster, must buy a license from some previously existing broadcaster who has bought their license from another broadcaster.

Going the speed of light is bad for your age.