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Comment: Now if only the US government could do it. (Score 4, Interesting) 177 177

I appreciate the right of people to look like idiots walking around talking to their camera. Documenting their journey for no one who cares to see.

Why they think that they are what is worth filming is beyond me. Or that talking while filming is a good choice.

My wife and I love to sail, and watch sailing videos on you-tube. The good ones take pictures of things AROUND them, things I actually want to see. They also either do voiceovers post-production, or use a separate microphone to eliminate wind noise.

The rest are mostly just crap, only of value to the people that shot them. Not really worth sharing to the public.

In our motorcycle group, I've witnessed people just vomit their pictures up to the web, with no care taken to edit or even select only the few that are worth posting. No pride in what they have taken, just a regurgitation of what's in their camera.

Selfie sticks are just more of the same. I'll admit they have some valid uses.

Too bad most people appear to be ignorant of what those uses are.

Comment: Re:Cool (Score 0) 190 190

It's true that Android doesn't have it (yet) .. but Samsung Android phones and tablets have actual windowing capability; two apps can be visible and usable at the same time without having to switch back and forth.

Far more useful for me than having even more game choices. Or drawing pictures on a screen using my finger instead of a device that actually is made for it.

Nothing here for the majority of Android users to see ... moving along.

Wait .. 'starting to make'?? So all of those iDrones that had to be first to buy the latest iPhone are going to be left out in the cold. Already?? Before their phone is even a few months old?

That is the most hilarious thing I've ever heard. Will there be a a big rush on the Apple store in a few month as all of these iIdiots rush out to get the latest and greatest? Again??

Comment: Re:That's stupid (Score 0, Troll) 104 104

So .. you prefer to pay too much for a phone with few choices simply because you don't have the ability to keep off of unsecured or untrusted WiFi networks? Which you shouldn't be connecting to anyway because there are far greater risks associated with that practice.

I never allow my phone to connect to any WiFi network I don't trust, that's just stupid. And it never downloads updates unless it's on WiFi. So that pretty much leaves only updating my phone at work or at home.

But then again, I have skills.

Yawn .. just another article Apple iDrones will point to and try to justify their overpayment of a limited product. I mean, they just got a watch. At least .. some of them did. I wonder when they will have the ability to use more than one app at the same time. I love being able to pull up Google maps in a second window while I'm also surfing using Chrome. Or pull up Evernote and jot something down. Great capability .. maybe someday the used-to-be-innovative Apple will figure out how to do windows.

Comment: Labor saving better tasting (Score 2) 270 270

My wife just tossed her Keurig, and she is so much happier. She had forgotten what it was like to wake up to the smell of brewing coffee,and able to get her 2-3 cups instantly instead of waiting for each cup. She does miss some of the flavors, but now is more likely to add a little cocoa to the grounds the night before, or toss in some fresh vanilla with her real cream.

So .. to keep on topic ... from my experience, most things that introduce a labor saving mechanism in the kitchen change the characteristics of the food. I make pizza dough in a stand mixer every week or two. Last week, I couldn't find the dough hook and made it by hand for the first time in months. It was so much better, the kneading that I did made a dough with better texture than the dough hook. Probably because as I knead, I can feel the dough and know when it's done. Now, to be fair, it could be that I just don't do it right with the dough hook. But .. since it produced a pizza dough that was serviceable, I didn't really care. At the time.

The hand grinders I used as a kid did a better job than the using the food processor, we had much more control and it produced far more consistent texture. It is far easier to over beat egg whites using a hand mixer than doing it by hand.

I appreciate the labor saving devices, and have a microwave, food processor, stand mixer, electric knife, and ice cream maker to name a few. I use them often. Love the ice cream maker, my wife won't even eat store bought ice cream anymore. But I kinda miss the hand cranked one, I just can't seem to get the same consistency that machine did.

For something special, I almost always drop back to doing it without them. I find there is a better connection to food for me when hand mixing, hand chopping, and hand shaping that I don't get letting a machine do it and just watching.

Several years ago, I spent time in India. While there, I got over the Western taboo of eating with my hands. I now find myself being watched at restaurants as I tend to still eat some of my meal with my hand, it somehow seems to make the experience more satisfying.

In our current mobile-phone addled society, I suppose the quality of the food isn't as important as it used to be. I admit that my wife and I tend to eat dinner with the TV on because the kitchen table usually has some project on it. We didn't use to when we first got married, I always made it a habit of turning that damn thing off because she is such a great cook.

Now, I'm not a food snob. Even though I appreciate good food, my wife and I also can enjoy fish sticks and Kraft macaroni and cheese for dinner. I've been known to hanker for B&M baked beans and hot dogs and chastise my wife to not add anything to them; she is often tempted to 'tart them up' and make them her own.

Appreciating the difference between Gortons fish sticks and a hand grilled mahi mahi is not the same as turning ones nose up at Gortons. All food has flavor, and I have the opinion that if I feel food A is better than food B, it only pertains to me and no one else.

But I'm afraid that the more we move towards Keurig, the less people will know how food can really taste when done by hand. And they won't have the skills to do it when the zombie apocalypse finally hits.

Brain ceviche anyone???

Comment: Re:Meh (Score 1) 372 372

And not understanding the problem or it's effects could also result in the wrong solution. Or an ineffective one that just wastes money.

When climate scientists stop throwing darts against a wall, I'll listen to them.

In the meantime, I'll do my best to reduce my carbon footprint. But I'm not about to change my entire way of life (which some of the more fanatical alarmists would like), when they can't come up with anything beyond a computerized guess.

Comment: Re:Some good data... (Score 1) 434 434

Thank you! Only the techies care about the latest IOS update, I agree that most people are happy as long as the device they are using continues to perform in the manner they are accustomed to. Having used Android for years, I can't recall one 'must have' feature of any upgrade. It was nice to have multiple users on the tablet, but now my wife and I each have our own so who cares. It was nice to have better flipping of screens, but my phone doesn't re-orient the menu when turned sideways, and I don't really care. With each new device came a new OS, and while I liked the new features, I continued to use older devices without any problem. My son and son-in-law were both perfectly happy to get our hand-me-downs, and often used them for a couple more years until they became just too broken to use any longer. If anything, the larger issue is how these newer devices physically don't last more than 3-4 years. My Samsung5 phone is suffering from a common problem with an loose internal connector after two years, and will probably not be usable within the next 6 months. Time for an upgrade. With so many people upgrading phones and tablets every couple of years anyway, the lack of a consistent IOS upgrade path isn't an issue.

This is simply a 'made-up' crisis from people who have Apple devices. One of the people that sit next to me at work has an Apple phone, and he is always touting how the latest upgrades just happen. I have a company-issued Apple phone that I never use because the interface is so bad, and have yet to see any IOS update that provided anything of value or made me say 'Hey .. I have to get me one of these'. Hey Apple ... it's time to offer multiple windows and users on your tablets now that Android has had it for a couple of years. You finally caught up with a serviceable watch.

I have been very pleased with my Samsung Pro tablet update capabilities. And when I switched from one tablet to another because my old one got stolen, all my stuff came along for the ride. It appears that individual vendors are paying attention and offering features, there is no need for Google to do it.

Comment: Re:It's finally time (Score 2, Interesting) 314 314

Dental health is a service provided by people who spend money to outfit dental clinics. Same as medical professionals. As such, the market dictates the availability and costs. Instead of the government, which is the way it should be. It's amazing to me the number of people who think the government, who can't seem to run anything well, should be running healthcare and dental care. Just so a small minority of the population can afford something. Rather than provide services that only that small portion of the population can use if they choose to.

Insurance is 'crappy' because the most expensive treatments are cosmetic and most insurance won't cover more than 50%. Same as health regular insurance, it doesn't cover many cosmetic treatments. Because, if it did, insurance rates would go up to cover the increased costs. Providing orthodontic coverage for anyone other than those with serious misalignment places a large monetary burden on everyone else, just so they can look pretty. Why should I have pay for someone to have a pretty smile?? Letting me decide what insurance I want is the best way to provide efficient coverage without further driving up demand and costs.

You see that in the medical field. Breast augmentations are covered as the result of cancer treatments, not simply because someone got old. Cataract surgery isn't covered until it affects ones ability to drive, not because someone just wants to see better.

Many companies provide dental insurance as an inexpensive benefit. It's inexpensive because most people CHOOSE to not use it.

Comment: Re:This product reminds me of... (Score 2) 174 174

I agree with your comment that spending $350 on a watch isn't a big deal. My wife bought me a Samsung Gear 2 for my birthday last year, and I've worn it every day since. I didn't buy one myself because, like so many others, I didn't think any smartwatch was worth the money. But my wife or I usually try to buy something for the other person they would never buy for themselves on their birthday, so now I have a smartwatch. And won't leave home without it. And I can go swimming with it, and have done so!

Apple will continue to sell the iWatch to iPhone users, and Google/Samsung/LG/Motorola/et. al. will continue to sell their smart watches to Android users. And I'm sure that any app or feature the iWatch has will soon start showing up in the other phones. Just as Apple copied a whole lot of features from the other smart watches. I doubt if any watch is going to cause very many people to switch phone types.

I personally see no reason to switch to the iWatch based on all the reviews I have read and features it has, especially since it doesn't have a camera. I use my camera all the time and think not including that will come back to haunt them.

Comment: All it does is encourage me to read more (Score 1) 216 216

One of the draws of network television was if I sorta liked a show, I would 'make time' to watch it when it came on. Especially back in the old days when if you missed a show you had to wait months to see it again on reruns. It was easy to sit in a chair at 7pm and watch whatever shows were one. Even more compelling if they had a story-line that required seeing every episode. I remember making time to watch every episode of Heroes (the first season only) and Babylon 5.

Now that so many shows are streaming, I find that I'm more likely to pick up my tablet and go outside and read. I can always catch a show later if I really want to.

And I find that I rarely really want to. There are a few shows that I watch regularly. And a whole lot that, because they are on Netflix or Hulu, I would like to watch. But I'm really tired of ads and if a show isn't all that good (which most aren't), I find myself more and more just reading. Or playing games on my tablet. Or watching YouTube videos.

Some of my friends just go on and on about their favorite shows and how I should watch them. I'm finding that it just isn't that much a part of my life anymore. I'm getting really tired of paying for satellite and Hulu and Netflix and if my wife didn't watch them, I'd cancel the lot. I've tried to convince her we don't need satellite, but there are about 5 channels that we do watch and she isn't willing to give that up.

Thank you Internet Netflix, and Hulu for encouraging me to read me. And thank you Chromecast for giving me all kinds of free stuff to watch when I do want to.

Comment: Re:Who wears a watch these days (Score 1) 290 290

Apple didn't invent the smartphone, they added a slick case and a few additional features that existing phones already had. At most, it was an incremental improvement in functionality wrapped up in a slick marketing campaign. Then they locked their customer base to their store, which was fine with all the iSheeple. Things like the pinch-to-zoom were already developed and in use by other tools before Apple used it and people went gah-gah over it. Apple simply took existing ideas, wrapped then in a phone, and make the world think they invented the concepts.

To be clear, I didn't suggest Samsung invent the smart watch either. I only mentioned all of the things existing smart watches can do because some pooh-pooh the idea, and that Apple is very late to the game. Because Apple's commercials make it sound like they invented the damn thing. And so does much of the media coverage.

Just as Apple didn't invent the desktop computer, or the portable music player, or a host of other things they act like they were the first company to actually create.

Comment: Re:Who wears a watch these days (Score 1) 290 290

I have a Samsung 4 watch and a Samsung Gear 2. My phone is usually in the living room if I'm just running around the house, so it has to pass through one wall if I'm out back, 2 if I'm out front. There are windows, I don't know how much that makes a difference And it's stated to be waterproof for 30 minutes. I'm rarely in the pool for more than 10 (do yard work, get hot, jump in the pool, relax, get out, repeat), but between the hot tub and pool, I'd say the claim is pretty good.

I've found the range to be about 40ft. through the house, I have no idea line-of-sight.

But, if I know I'm going to be outside for awhile, I take the phone out with me and the range easily covers the back yard. It's a Phoenix back yard, so it's not too big.

Comment: Re:Who wears a watch these days (Score 1) 290 290

It's not a timer for the boil. It's a timer to help me to remember I put the damn pot on to boil so I don't run it dry.

And it's not a cup. It's a quart. I'm making iced tea. If I make hot tea, I nuke it.

And I use loose leaf tea, it's so much better than bagged tea.

And all it takes is to tap my watch once to select the timer, and once again to start it, since it's almost always set to 4.5 minutes. My wife and I drink a pitcher of tea a day on the weekends when doing yard work, and another pitcher or two the rest of the week. (I live in Phoenix, it's really dry here. And I'm probably outside doing something all year round. What can I say, I enjoy doing yard work on the weekend.)

Then exactly 4.5 minutes to steep. Another timer, but this is more important as too long makes the tea bitter. And it's the same as the timer I just used to boil water.

Comment: Re:Who wears a watch these days (Score 5, Insightful) 290 290

Neither had I. Until last July, when my wife gave me an Android smartwatch for my birthday (suck it Apple ... you are not an innovator of smart watches).

Since then, I've worn it every day. I know, what's the big deal about taking your phone out of your pocket.

Well ...

When your hands are covered with mortar dust, and your phone rings. it's pretty convenient.

When you are expecting a call but want to go swimming, it's pretty nice to have a watch that's waterproof for swimming.

When you are driving down the highway and want to get a picture of something, it's pretty convenient. (Oh wait .. the iWatch doesn't have a camera). And it's not distracted driving when all you have to do point your hand in the general direction, and say 'shoot'.

When you want to shut off that damn alarm about turning off the pool equipment, and your phone is in the house.(Pool timer broke, so I direct wired it until I order another one.)

When you don't have to carry your phone around the house all day in your pocket because if someone calls you, you can answer using your watch.

When you need to set a timer to remind you to check the water boiling for tea, it's pretty convenient to not take the phone out of your pocket.

When you can't find your phone and your watch can set off the ring tone.

Oh .. and it tells the time too.

Notice I didn't say anything about the fitness apps. I used them for awhile, then noticed that they really sucked down the battery. Then I realized that I don't need a watch to tell me how far I've walked today BECAUSE IT JUST ISN'T THAT FREAKIN IMPORTANT! My scale tells me every morning if I'm not exercising enough or eating too much.

Is it worth $300? Depends on how much $300 is worth to you. I didn't think it was worth that much, but my wife felt it would make a great birthday present since I was always looking at it but refused to spend the money. Now that I've used it for 9 months, I'd say it was worth every dime. I've learned to discount anyone that says something isn't worth the money, because they only know whether or not it's worth it to them. And since they have never had one, they have no idea what they are talking about.

If I had an Apple phone, I might buy the iWatch. It's definitely not enough to get me to switch from Android. (Has Apple innovated two windows on their iPads yet??? How about multiple users.) Mine has definitely been worth the $300. Isn't. that's cheaper than the iWatch? And it has a camera. And can use standard watch bands.

But I won't be buying the latest Samsung phone either. Why would I buy a phone that I can't swap out the battery or use an SSD card.

If I wanted that, I'd spend more money and buy an iPhone.

Comment: It's really sad ... (Score 0) 489 489

... that people like Deray McKesson ignore the how there are so many more videos showing police officers helping than those showing brutality. He has an agenda, and won't let facts get in the way of spreading his FUD.

There are always bad apples in any group. Deray would have us believe that it's an overwhelming number and that nothing is being done to reduce it. Al Sharpton just wants any excuse to spread his racist remarks. And the media is there to help them, because pain and suffering and extremes sell, helping others does not.

It's really sad that the media (and Slashdot) gives these people so much air time, yet virtually ignores the many instances where police officers go out of there way to help people. It paints a jaded picture of an entire group of people simply because of the actions of a few.

It is highly doubtful that Michael Slager would have gotten away with what he did. It would have been quite easy to establish where he was at the time of the shooting, where the victim was, and in what direction he was facing. It would have been very simple to show he was not in any danger at all, and even without the camera, there was another eye witness.

All the camera did was get him fired and arrested a lot sooner.

And, of course Mr. McKesson fails to point out that cameras would probably have exonerated the officer int he Ferguson shooting much sooner, and many others cleared of charges.

Be careful what you wish for Mr. McKesson .The camera only shows one view and it doesn't necessarily prove what you would like it to prove.

Comment: What I learned after attending one semester (Score 2) 145 145

I learned that I can learn a lot faster on my own. Maybe not everyone can, but after suffering through classes with people that seemed to not be able to get basic concepts in physics and calculus, I realized that I could buy the text books and teach myself at a much faster rate. And since the computer lab was open to the public, I had full use of the facilities to do the homework assignments.

What I hope happens is that those that need college to learn continue to have the opportunity to go. And the smart people that don't need it will stop having to justify themselves simply because they don't have a piece of paper that says they had to spend a lot of money to learn something because they weren't able to do it themselves.

I'd much rather hire self-motivated people who can learn new things by themselves. They are much quicker to adapt to changing technology than someone that had to go to school to learn.

I've never been canoeing before, but I imagine there must be just a few simple heuristics you have to remember... Yes, don't fall out, and don't hit rocks.

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