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Comment: Re:Create a $140 billion business out of nothing? (Score 1) 358

by rtb61 (#48949493) Attached to: How, and Why, Apple Overtook Microsoft

I simply don't by their stuff because I don't buy their marketing, the device is over priced and under specced for that price, as factually proven by their profit margins. To many have bought into the advertising and are not buying Apple devices because of functionality but purely because of fashion. I would bet that the brand that has the most product sitting idle in drawers some where because they are the old unfashionable model would be Apple. In others Apples sells status more than any other technology product and like all fashions they do inevitably go out of style. I would suspect them of profit clumping, delaying and bringing forward profits as an exercise in marketing to protect a falling stock price and create a public image of success that they can sell.

Comment: Re:In other news... (Score 1) 246

by rtb61 (#48949449) Attached to: The NSA Is Viewed Favorably By Most Young People

Seriously, a survey about the NSA, seriously, really seriously, you guys have become just so silly. So was it a digital survey by any chance, were the results collected and collated upon a digital device, where those results put up on digital media, I mean after all we are talking the NSA here. When it comes to black hats these people have gone so far off the reservation, that they have become a gravitational singularity with regard to the truth, a black hole from which the light of truth never escapes. So any digital data with regard to the hacks everything group, well, who is kidding who, it will end up saying what ever the hell the NSA want it to say (likely the really tough choice here how high a percentage to present with out the majority treating it like a joke). Seriously those criminals lied publicly to the US government under oath, for which nothing happened ie bugging all those politicians communications proved mighty useful.

Comment: Re:Wait... what? (Score 1) 41

by rtb61 (#48949375) Attached to: UK Sets Up Internet-Savvy Army Unit

The reality is of course the propaganda is not about getting rid of the selected targets it is all about making publicly acceptable the idea of getting rid of the targets by what ever means you happen to choose. So burning them alive with white phosphorous is acceptable as long as you can get away with it by convincing those who would judge your actions.

Basically yet another government agencies is purposefully setting out to commit electoral fraud and should be charged with a crime. It is illegal for government agencies to use government funds in order to alter electoral outcomes especially when specifically intending to do so by actively misrepresenting who they really are.

So the name of the unit basically "FUCK YOU, THE MAJORITY", a unit specifically designed to misrepresent itself as the majority, a unit specifically designed to silence the majority voice by drowning it out, a unit specifically designed to force the opinion of a minority upon the majority, basically a military unit whose whole design purpose is to corrupt the democratic process in order to push undemocratic ideals that the majority would not normally accept.

The whole twenty century mass media misrepresentation of what the majority opinion really is revisited. A blatant act of public corruption.

Comment: Anecdote, completely non-scientific (Score 2) 107

by symbolset (#48949269) Attached to: Can Students Have Too Much Tech?
We started our youngest two on computers at 12 months. They moved on to tablets not long after. They were reading at a sixth grade level before preschool. Our very youngest has been accepted to and attending a school for the gifted, as she reads at a college level now and is also good at math. She publishes how-to articles online and is working on a serial drama in the fan-fiction genre that has fans among her peers - without prompting or assistance. She's eight. She lies on the forms to get around the TOS. She has gotten her older brother interested in authorship as well. Their littler nephew was showing me the other day how to modify the network settings on my Android tablet to join his Minecraft server. He is six.

Comment: Re:Newer apps expect beefier hardware (Score 1) 358

by symbolset (#48947973) Attached to: How, and Why, Apple Overtook Microsoft
The reason I chose that particular model is that is when the platform became "good enough" for general purpose computing. More is always better but this is the level of sufficiency necessary for ubiquity. Now the price has moved within reach for almost everybody, so ubiquitous it will be. People with premium needs will buy premium products, but folks who can only afford these will be delighted and amazed. The software available for them is more than enough already, and growing every day. The next issue is global connectivity, and that is being worked on.

Comment: Re:What Neil Gaiman said about GoT future (Score 1) 169

The problem is, NG's only partially right. Yes, it's also unreasonable to expect the author to dedicate every waking moment for years - perhaps even decades - of his life to finishing the work on schedule, much less a schedule that exists only on reader's minds. But it's also unreasonable to start releasing a series, start dragging your feet halfway through, and act surprised when the readers treat that as a betrayal. It is; the "to be continued" on the first book is why publishers and readers both tolerated the plot being unfinished and helped drive sales for the next book.

The author is not the reader's bitch, but neither does he get to make a deal, pocket the payoff, fail to deliver his end of the bargain and then act like people vilifying him for that are treating him as one. They aren't, they're treating him as a fraud.

Gaiman simply wants the best of both worlds for the author: the ability to start selling a long work before it's finished, and the freedom to bail out anytime without getting any flak. That's unreasonable, and not going to happen, because at the end of the day, the readers aren't author's bitches, either.

Comment: Re:"Support" != actually sacrifice for (Score 1) 403

by ultranova (#48946113) Attached to: Most Americans Support Government Action On Climate Change

I'm so thankful I live in states that either don't do inspections, or no sniff tests at least.

But if you did, you wouldn't have to beg for identity reinforcement on online forums. You could protest with your friends against the yoke of oppression at the stairs of the state capitol rather than hope someone provides you with an opponent here.

One can be a rebel without a cause but not without an authority to rebel against.

Life's too short not to enjoy it to the max.

There is something very sad about ending a trolling attempt on Slashdot with such a sentence, especially on Friday night.

Comment: Re:Humans ask the questions. (Score 1) 92

by ultranova (#48945895) Attached to: Cutting Through Data Science Hype

Optimizing business processes like JIT supply chains is a branch of math called "operations research" (logistics if you are american).

Or "garbage in, garbage out" if you've seen the results of mathematically optimized processes encountering physical reality. But hey, someone earned a bonus for implementing them, and its not their fault someone got the flu, a storm delayed a ship, a roadwork delayed a truck which thus arrived just after lunch hour began, the warehouse door got stuck so they had to use another, another company was delivering goods at the same time so ours had to wait in line, the new part didn't fit, half the workforce was "optimized" away so the rest hate your guts and now have a work ethic to match, etc. etc.

Comment: Re:The crime happened to an Indian in India. (Score 1) 230

by ultranova (#48945789) Attached to: Indian Woman Sues Uber In the US Over Alleged New Delhi Taxi Rape

This should be obvious, but for some reason, many people are always fixated on interpreting #3 (by far the most common scenario) as #2.

The "some reason" being that if someone goes to jail, the problem is solved - after all, they caught the bad guy, right? He's safely locked away or buried, unable to harm anyone again, and even more importantly, the injustice of an innocent person being victimized was just a temporary glitch that was promptly fixed - dreadful business, but now it's all behind us.

But if person A accuses person B of something horrible - such as a rape - then one of them must be a horrible person. If neither goes to jail, then justice has failed to be served. Occasional failures are inevitable with mere mortals, but no one likes - nor should like - them. The problem is, people don't always deal with such discomfort very well - there's no shortage of glitches in the current unfinished state of the world.

Comment: Re:Shame on them (Score 1) 177

by ultranova (#48945535) Attached to: Mathematicians Uncomfortable With Ties To NSA, But Not Pulling Back

To fail to recognize WWII was a holy war, is to fail to see what is happening now.

To the Nazis it certainly was. And it became that way for everyone towards the end. The entire 1900s were a time of religious warfare between fanatical supporters of various nations and ideologies.

Any ancient Athenian would instantly recognize, say, the American Eagle as the local equivalent of Athena. Which is fine, people need group identities to cooperate effectively, and these group identities will inevitably end up having recognizable personalities. But we'd gain more control over the outcome if we'd acknowledge that nations, ideologies, and anything else that can command people's loyalty is functionally a god and thus follows mythological, rather than rational, patterns.

Currently people aren't really aware of these high-level structures, which is why trying to control or even predict the outcome of various situations is a bit like decompiling a highly optimized program. And often the result ends up simply repeating typical religious patterns, for example with current efforts in Europe to placate the angry god Invisible Hand with public sacrifices - or "austerity", as the clerical cast ("economists") like to call it - to get back economical prosperity. And of course, communists on the other side of the ideological divide insisted that their god should bring forth a paradise on Earth, if only doctrinal purity was maintained. Evidence mattered little, until people finally lost their faith, at which point the Soviet Union fell pretty much overnight.

A god is a superorganism typical for humanity, the equivalent of anthill or beehive, thus every war is a holy war - a clash between rival deities - no matter what its nominal cause. Every member of a particular society has its image in their mind, suggesting courses of action compatible with said society, which then serve to reinforce them in anyone witnessing these actions. All too often that image has been quite beastly, but with greater awareness of these mechanisms, one can exert conscious control over the image - take actions which project the image one wants, hopefully starting a chain reaction that perpetuates the updated image through the entire society. It's about time we take human destiny into human hands under conscious control, rather than leave it to luck and instincts that have outlived their usefulness.

I'd rather be led to hell than managed to heavan.