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Comment: Re:Dumbass (Score 1) 168

If you have a better idea, feel free to go to Russia and try out your idea.

Basically his column is "I asked Putin this question because in the USA... (a few thousand words about how the USA spies on its citizens)."

It's not about Russia at all. And if Snowden were brave, he'd stand trial, instead of playing Putin's stool pigeon. Just think of it, Putin feeds and protects the most powerful voice for Internet freedom ever known, and can drop a dime on him at a moments notice.

Comment: Re:Wouldn't trust Apple (Score 2) 194

by iluvcapra (#46764245) Attached to: How Apple's CarPlay Could Shore Up the Car Stereo Industry

Okay here we go

I have the following:
$600,000 loft (and appropriate decor/rooftop pool)
BMW 328i
84 IMDb credits, and my crew has won three Oscars
2 dogs
2 iPhones
1 Macbook Air
2 MacPros
(I also have a MacBook running ubuntu)

I am uncertain of the future of tech without Apple products.
I just don't 'get' the obnoxious contrarianism of Android products. Or their enormous screens, or their uniformly poor OS upgrade and hardware support, or Google's completely obscure roadmap for Android.

The thing Apple is selling you, beside the hardware, is the complete integrated product. They take your money, they give you something that works, that's their sole "monetization" strategy. Unlike everyone else in the business, trying to suck you into their various creepy ad/clickstream/search front-running scams.

I won't even go into the Google tracking everything you do to, you know, "help" you.

This isn't the 1990s, competitive Apple products are always competitively priced. It's the feature packages on Apple kit that people get upset about.

Comment: Re:Mr Fixit (Score 4, Insightful) 582

by iluvcapra (#46761273) Attached to: How Does Heartbleed Alter the 'Open Source Is Safer' Discussion?

That it reacts fast is good. That the bug could be audited in the source, in public, is good.

We should remember that FLOSS reacted very quickly to the "revelation," but the bug itself has been sitting there for years, which isn't really supposed to happen.

It's nice we know how long it's been there, and can have all kinds of philosophical discussions about why the OpenSSL folks decided to write their own malloc.

Also OpenSSL was effectively a monoculture and just about every SSL-encrypted internet communication over the last two years has been compromised. OpenSSL has no competition at its core competency, so the team really has no motivation to deliver an iteratively better product, apart from their need to scratch an itch. FLOSS software projects tend not to operate in a competitive environment, where multiple OSS products are useful for the same thing and vie for placement. This is probably bad.

Comment: Re:Lobbying aside (Score 3, Insightful) 421

by iluvcapra (#46760379) Attached to: Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

his point was that people need to see what they're giving to the government

People "see" it already, on their paystubs and on their 1040s.

What he wants is for tax collection -- not taxes themselves, just the way they're collected -- to be intentionally disruptive, so that people will attempt to lower rates and revenues not because they are high, per se, but just because the way they're collected causes economic harm.

Comment: Re:Lobbying aside (Score 4, Insightful) 421

by iluvcapra (#46759221) Attached to: Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

No, you'd just have a bunch of big banks getting into tax financing, offering modest loans at reasonable interest rates(see fine print) to help people who didn't save for their bill.

The withholding system works because it causes the least economic distortion -- the more a tax "hurts," the more adverse an effect it has on day-to-day economic decisions, the more it's liable to cause people to make bad economic decisions, like saving huge lump sums in the bank instead of investing or consumption. A tax "hurting" might be good politics (for some people), but if it causes people to have irregular cash flow or makes it significantly harder for them to make planning decisions it will hurt economic growth.

Comment: Re:Get rid of income Tax (Score 1) 421

by iluvcapra (#46758899) Attached to: Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

If you want to talk overall economic health, taxation does not really impact it since all those tax dollars just go strait back into the economy anyway.

Ehhhhhhhh.. it's not that simple. The government can allocate wealth well or badly, it can waste a significant amount of money by overpaying, by giving a supplier more than the least they would be willing to accept -- classic economic rent. Suppliers win premium prices through lobbying.

It cuts both easy though, lobbying can cause the government to waste money, or cause the government to force everyone else to waste money, just as Intuit has basically carved out an entire industry for itself as the IRS's middleman, while if the IRS were to simply pre-fill people's returns itself most people would save a little bundle every year on tax prep.

Comment: Re:Gak (Score 1) 236

by iluvcapra (#46730989) Attached to: GM Names Names, Suspends Two Engineers Over Ignition-Switch Safety

Ironically, NASA has almost certainly killed more people with the space shuttle than have died due to ignition switches.

I haven't the slightest idea why they're going to NASA of all places for an engineering audit, whenever there's a shuttle accident it's always transpired that NASA has intractable compliance and engineering culture problems, and lack the capacity to properly validate a tricycle for safety, let alone a mass-produced motor vehicle. Their incompetence has literally cost the US a manned spaceflight program.

They may be taking a page from Jack in the Box, when JITB hired NASA to completely overhaul their procedures after the salmonella deaths. Given NASA's record it's a miracle JITB burgers didn't all subsequently carry Ebola.

Comment: Oh why not? (Score 3, Insightful) 313

by iluvcapra (#46717393) Attached to: Double Take: Condoleezza Rice As Dropbox's Newest Board Member

She was the provost of Stanford University, she's got a huge rolodex in government and SillyCon Valley. She's also obviously got a big background in IR and particularly working with Russia and Africa, which are both huge growth markets for Internet companies.

Her biggest crime was not asking all the right questions, and didn't have to swag necessary to challenge Cheney or Rumsfeld, not that she was particularly motivated. She's proven to be a pretty bad administrator and manager, but she's going on the Board, not into management.

Comment: Re:7.1 million is pathetically low, so ya I believ (Score 1) 723

by iluvcapra (#46717183) Attached to: Can the ObamaCare Enrollment Numbers Be Believed?

7.1 million sign ups out of over 300 million people for a "mandatory" participation program is truly pathetic regardless whether it is above or below what was expected.

Are you sure that's the right comparison? There are over 300 million people in the US, but you only have to apply for "Obamacare" if you don't have employer-provided health care, you aren't covered by your parents, you aren't qualified to draw on Medicare or Medicaid, and your obligation is waived for religious or moral reasons. This remainder only comes out to about 20-30 million.

Comment: Re:Should void warranty (Score 1) 208

Bullshit. Tesla has stated that the computer that controls the 17" and panel LCDs are completely separated from the important stuff in the car.

Hrm. The Tesla touchscreen give your instrumentation and feedback on powerplant performance, and it allows you to control the headlamps, doors, regenerative braking and hydraulics. I'm not clear on what kind of "complete separation" were talking about. If an attacker got into the touchscreen they probably wouldn't be able to brick the whole car, but if you lost the touchscreen while moving on the road you could be in a lot of trouble.

"If that makes any sense to you, you have a big problem." -- C. Durance, Computer Science 234

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