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Comment: How to NOT put video on the internet (Score 1, Insightful) 298

by gurps_npc (#49728007) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Tech Skills Do HS Students Need To Know Now?
Especially on a restaurant site.

In fact, let's pass a law that requires anyone that ever puts sound or video on a restaurant's web page, to walk around with a giant, bright blue dunce hat on the head. And make it legal to randomly blow boat horns right next to their ear.

I have never ever, not once, wanted to see a video of a restaurant. Nor do I want any music or sounds when I try to get their location, hours, phone number, and maybe check out their menu. Maybe once I looked at a picture to see if it was a dive or not, but that's it.

That is ALL we ever want to know about a restaurant.

Comment: Re:probably good (Score 1) 36

by gurps_npc (#49725501) Attached to: Using Satellites To Monitor Bridge Safety
Do you have any evidence to back up your claim? Frankly given the actual history - with bridges etc. given estimated life expectancies on creation that have now long passed - the burden of proof is clearly on YOU to claim that our infrastructure is not crumbling.

We have a situation where the Federal government built things on the premise that the states would maintain them, but the states - in large part due to people like you - have refused to spend the money the Fed said was necessary from the get go.

This is the reality and easily verifiable historical record.

Perhaps you are right - that the original maintenance recommendations were excessive. But you need to prove it, not just make a blind statement and complain about how much it costs like a greedy idiot that refuses to pay for oil changes on his car and get's upset when it breaks down.

Comment: Re:Driverless is the real threat (Score 1) 283

by gurps_npc (#49721025) Attached to: The Auto Industry May Mimic the 1980s PC Industry
I disagree strongly. When you are the driver, you want the drive to be enjoyable driving. There is a lot of stuff built into cars to let the driver enjoy the drive - even for cheap cars. Good acceleration, torque, feeling the road, all matter even for a simple drive to work. Competition and worry about being late makes you drive faster. Arriving someplace 4 minutes faster means you spend 4 minutes of your life DOING something better than driving.

But when you become the passenger you suddenly no longer care at ALL about acceleration, feeling the road, etc.. Driving slower is perfectly OK - because you are already doing something - reading, watching a movie, etc. Arriving someplace 4 minutes slower is no big deal, not even if you are late to work.

In your specific example, the Corolla has much more back seat space, but much LESS torque. Because it doesn't have the torque, it "feel'" weak and slow when you drive it. Which is a major reason why the Taurus is so much more expensive.

Comment: worthless technique (Score 1) 334

by gurps_npc (#49719015) Attached to: Stock Market Valuation Exceeds Its Components' Actual Value
Take a pimped out car. Let's say it's worth $50,000 on the open market. But if you break it apart and sell the pieces, you can probably get $80,000 or more - even admitting they are used. People don't like to do that, inpart beause it's a lot of labor - sometimes more than $30,000 to do dismantle the car and sell the pieces, even online.

With corporations, it often works the other way around - the whole is worth a lot more than the parts. Sum of it's parts is not a reliable way to price something. A prime example would be Apple corporation. If you were to break it up, so that the phone, music players, computers and tablet were all held by different companies and they would be worth a LOT LESS than the whole. It is the integration, the compatibility, that makes those things valuable.

Another good example is Amazon. Break it up into 3 different companies - a book company, an electronics company, amazon prime video, other physical products, and an internet fee processing company and it suddenly becomes far LESS valuable. Amazon makes it's money in large part by being the 'one stop' shopping location.

Management is also either worth something or a drag on the earnings.

Sum of it's parts is not a reliable method of pricing. It is at best, a 'ballpark' method, where things should be worth no more than 3 times that value, and no more than 1/2 that value.

Comment: Driverless is the real threat (Score 2) 283

by gurps_npc (#49717805) Attached to: The Auto Industry May Mimic the 1980s PC Industry
The dashboard crap is not relevant to the discussion. Once we have driver-less cars (and I assure you, teens and people 70+ NEED driver-less cars already, so they will come), then the industry will change.

Once that happens, then the industry will entirely change. There will become three basic kinds of vehicles:

1. Recreational vehicles that do not have a computer. Further segregated into speed, off-road, and specialty classes.

2. Cheap. Probably focused on low gas useage, low speed, simple transportation designed to get you to work and the store at a reasonable rate, all while you read, listen to music, or watch videos. Power, speed, appearance will pretty much be ignored here. You want to show off, pick a girl, you get yourself a recreational vehicle.

3. Cargo. People will still need to haul stuff. Minivans/SUV types for parents, trucks for workmen, the main difference will be whether the cargo area is designed for people or for goods, and if for people will it have a minibar stocked with high end liquor, or a Videobar stocked with cartoons.

The idea that the dashboard will become the all important feature only applies to Mommy-mobiles. It will be a relatively small portion of the market.

Comment: Space will have a drone carrier carrier (Score 2) 90

by gurps_npc (#49707929) Attached to: On the Taxonomy of Sci-Fi Spaceships
Assuming light speed communication, the huge distances involved drone-carrier-carrier will probably become the killer ship. Lets call it the Super Carrier.

This combat technique sends drones out to attack. But they will be too far away from the main ship directly communicate soon enough. So you have a slower, hidden super carrier that transports drone carriers most of the way. Say, from Earth to within 20 light seconds of the target (Mars for example). When combat arrives, it launches smaller drone carriers while the super carrier goes dark for the duration of the battle. It never sends any electrical or heat signal, after launching the drone carriers.

The drone carriers will do the final approach, within a couple of light seconds of the target (Earth's moon is 1.5 light seconds away from the earth). Then they launch a bunch of attack drones, which are directly controlled by the drone carriers. Assuming an equal opponent, the drones will attack their opponent's drone carriers. Once all your opponent's drone carriers are taken out, you re-task your remaining drones as scouts looking for your opponent's super-carrier. Unless of course they surrender.

This allows the majority of your military support crew to be a safe distance from the battle until you have won/lost. It minimizes your own losses, while maximizing your opponents.

Comment: Illogical (Score 1) 294

by gurps_npc (#49700665) Attached to: The Solution To Argentina's Banking Problems Is To Go Cashless
The government that abused the hell out of Argentina's currency doesn't want to fix it. They are the ones that intentionally abused it in the first place.

Any government that was willing to not abuse the currency could simply STOP ABUSING the currency. They would not need to go cashless.

Going cashless would at best be a meaningless symbol.

Comment: Luck plays a more important role than people know (Score 5, Insightful) 126

by gurps_npc (#49697625) Attached to: How SpaceX and the Quest For Mars Almost Sunk Tesla Motors
But that is not the whole story. Everyone thinks the story is:

Guy gets lucky and wins the lottery!

But this not the story - not literally or figuratively.

Instead real life works like this:

Guy gets lucky and wins the lottery and ....

1) loses it all within 5 years because he has now idea how to deal with his luck.

2) works his ass off to turn his momentary luck into something long lasting.

Musk, like Gates, Jobs, etc. etc. all got lucky and had to work their asses off to take a bit of luck and turn it into a thriving huge success.

But that hard work they did doesn't mean their success did not depend on their luck as much as it did on their work.

Comment: Any other training illegal? (Score 1) 245

It is legal to teach people how to build weapons of war - from machine guns to bacterial weapons, to nuclear weapons.

It is legal to teach people how to cheat at cards - they are called 'magic' lessons.

But illegal to teach people how to defeat a machine that is not allowable in a court of law?

Does anyone know of any other skill that it is illegal to teach? Anything?

Comment: 30% (Score 2) 211

by gurps_npc (#49688857) Attached to: FCC May Stop 911 Access For NSI Phones
As many as 30% are "legitimate"?

That sounds really bad. But we need the percentage of "legitimate" calls made from regular phones to really know if it is bad or not.

If that comparison number is less than 60%, than they have no real argument. But if say 90% of regular phone calls to 911 are legit, then they have a more reasonable argument.

It's not an optical illusion, it just looks like one. -- Phil White