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Comment: Re:Drone It (Score 1) 376 376

That's pretty much the same sentiment they had just before the Vietnam war. And then took a big bloody nose from the inferior Migs. The worst thing about the F-35 though is it's a single engine fighter. In war redundancy is everything. When the engine on the 35 gets damaged the only option is to pull the ejection handle and hope for the best. That's a hell of an expensive lawn dart. If you want to see an example of how bad it can be just look at the F-16. It's nickname IS lawn dart. When the F-15 loses an engine they turn around and go back to base. That's how you live to fight another day. After the debacle with the F-22 and the F-105 I can't believe they bought another single engine fighter.

Comment: oh good, another huge waste of money (Score 1) 70 70

So, it's been thousands and thousands and thousands of years since the last asteroid strike of any consequence, and there's currently zero no reason to believe that another one is coming any time soon.

And we have diseases, and earthquakes, and deserts, and insufficient water, and insufficient food, and terrible economies, and wars, and we work way too much. But let's start spending money and time on risks we know nothing about.

I'm in full support of spending money and time to research the risks, but not to solve the unknown problem. Let me know when you know what the problem is. For all you know, asteroids are intentionally and maliciously guided by aliens. Let me know when you find out.

Comment: Empower the pilot (Score 1) 378 378

Like so many other "tools" these days, this one attempts to provide advantages via some form of automation -- be it in terms of the structural aircraft, or the features within it. Every time anyone ever focuses on such a goal, they reduce the required expertise of the user -- in this case the pilot -- substantially.

Everyone always thinks that's a good thing -- if it can be operated with less learning, then it can be operated by more users. They always forget that every advantage is a sacrifice of some other advantage. If it can be operated with less expertise, then there is less expertise that can be learned.

The end result is almost always the same. A rookie pilot can operate better, sooner, and an expert pilot can do less.

That's fine with self-assemble furniture. It sucks with military applications like this one. I'm always for tools that empower the operator into a god. Imagine a fighter jet, requires many many more hours of learning to master, but that allows the expert pilot to do so much more.

In my head, that's a very lean aircraft, bordering on ultralight. It's also an aircraft with guns that point backwards -- one day someone will explain to me why we love dog fighting so much that we insist on being unable to kill the enemy right behind us. I digress.

I'm confident that an expert pilot doesn't want a fancy helmet HUD at all. He just wants to be able to see -- gauges, backwards, what's going on. And I'm certain that an expert pilot knows most of what's going on without his eyes -- I'm sure his left buttock gives him more information than any HUD ever could.

Comment: Re:Taxi licenses are crazy expensive (Score 1) 296 296

You miss the point, the state is the one guaranteeing the limited monopoly.

When did the State ever guarantee that they would maintain the medallion program and/or refrain from issuing new medallions? Scarcity of medallions is hardly a natural right, and laws instituting artificial scarcity are subject to change. If anyone over-payed for a medallion under the false assumption that the current state of artificial scarcity was guaranteed to last they have no one but themselves to blame. The only compensation owed here is to those who were unjustly prohibited from operating taxis due to the State's medallion requirements.

Comment: Re:RFCs are not laws (Score 2) 46 46

The market not IETF process decides which protocols will continue to be used going forward.

The market loves when we have formal documents laid down by the Formal Documents People confirming what we've been telling our bosses for years. I would bet large sums of money that some tech, somewhere, just walked out of a meeting happy because he finally has permission to deprecate a long-broken system.

Comment: Re:Copyright Law (Score 3, Insightful) 167 167

That's a myth spread by litigious idiots whop prefer not to be seen as the scum that they are.

A simple legal agreement taking up less than one page where the domain name holder agrees not to use that domain name for the same line of business would do just fine if their intentions were at all honorable.

Like the legal agreement Apple Computer made with Apple Corp never to enter the music business in return for keeping the Apple Computer name?

Apple decided to enter the music business, Apple Corp. sued, lost and had to pay £2m to the company that had infringed on their trademark, thanks to that agreement. In the face of an army of lawyers, not only do these agreements offer minimal protection, they can actually make your position weaker.

Comment: Re:Indeed it probably doesn't matter (Score 1) 134 134

What is the legal value of such an included license, really? You don't have the issuer's signature on it. You could argue it's "signed" if you download from the maker's web site, but not if you're downloading from a third party source, where the package could have been altered.

Comment: Re:Taxi licenses are crazy expensive (Score 1) 296 296

>need to compensate who bought the medallions

Nope! My shares went down in the last crash, noone compensated me!

You buy shares in a company, knowing that the company may go bust or the overall market may go bad (in the latter case you still may receive dividends). You also know that the company may issue more shares in the future.

Taxi medallions are bought knowing there is a fixed supply of them, and that there will not be issued more. This the government has guaranteed those that buy or hold those licenses, this is what gives value to the medallion. If the government suddenly changes its mind and starts issuing new medallions to everyone that asks - or starts auctioning off new supplies - they should compensate losses for value lost due to this change. That's normal practice when a government changes a law that significantly affects the value of certain assets, as basically the government is breaking a law (albeit the legal way). That's also what gives people trust in the government and the rule of law.

Comment: Re:Does Uber need executives in France? (Score 1) 296 296

These execs were arrested for running an illegal company. Drivers may be arrested for driving an unlicensed taxi. I do suspect the former is the more serious charge, especially as the business of Uber has been declared illegal already in France, and the bosses decided to continue anyway: that's contempt of court, and courts tend to not be happy with that.

If you want to stop a business, you have to chop off its head, i.e. go after the bosses. The bosses of Uber don't care for drivers to get arrested, that's just collateral damage to them. They still make lots of money off the other drivers. Getting arrested themselves may finally get the message home that they have to follow the rules and regulations of the country they operate in, whether they like those rules and regulations or not.

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