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Comment: Re:The problem is that too much of it is state bas (Score 1) 135

We had tens of thousands of engineers working for the military industrial complex and then the cold war ended... result? Many of them were out of a job. And guess where many of them lived? California. It was and still is a big defense contractor state. And what did those engineers do? Most of them found jobs in the private sector and to a large extent their technical contribution made the tech explosion in California happen. Suddenly business had access to a glut of engineers.

Not only that, they also had access to all kinds of expertise that was developed using these precious federal dollars. Network communications, microprocessors, software architectures ...
How many of those talented engineers would've matured to that level if not for the cold war investments? You can certainly argue that government oversight of all this talent was misplaced, but you can't deny that it provided the essential opportunity for that talent to develop.

Comment: Re:I admire their spunk, but... (Score 1) 275

by kharchenko (#46593487) Attached to: Operation Wants To Mine 10% of All New Bitcoins

Inflation causes misallocation of resources. This is basic economics and is the reason Bitcoin is designed to eventually target a stable monetary base.

I don't know what "basic economics" you've been taught at the Bitcoin developer crashcourse, but as is, Bitcoin has been a highly deflationary currency, and at best, at some point in the future it will become mildly deflationary.

The whole thing is pretty much construed to protect against inflation. From an economic standpoint deflation is terrible. Most obviously it discourages investment (you're better off sitting on your money, and you're in a bind if you take out a loan since its real value will continually increase). Protecting against deflation is one of the key reasons why most countries manage their currencies.

This is not a problem intrinsic to cryptocurrency itself, and the folks who designed it must have known all that. So I think that either Bitcoin was designed with the aim of short-term profit goal of a pyramid-like scheme, or it was designed by some economic idealists who thought gold standard was too liberal in upholding the status quo of the moneyed class.

Comment: Re:And that's exactly what I asked for. (Score 2) 2219

by kharchenko (#46181597) Attached to: Slashdot Tries Something New; Audience Responds!

If you can't get the comment system right, you don't have the site! If you can't make something better, copy the existing system, and try incremental improvements only! Right now it looks like some Dingus err Disqus jackass rode in to teach us how the real comment system should work. Terrible!

Comment: Re:The best part about Slashdot... (Score 1) 180

by kharchenko (#46175067) Attached to: How Edward Snowden's Actions Have Impacted Defense Contractors

Right on! It would be a terrible thing to disband this community by curtailing the comment functionalities. The discussions are by far .. by FAR the valuable thing on Slashdot, and it's as much due to a balanced moderation system as to the community itself. You don't see many other sites allowing or handling anonymous posts any more. Please don't ruin it!

Comment: Re:this is like (Score 2, Informative) 397

by kharchenko (#45783321) Attached to: Netflix: Non-'A' Players Unworthy of Jobs

Actually...Netflix does quite a lot of research. They are famous as being tireless in their quest to improve every aspect of their business...and while most of those changes are invisible to us there are still plenty that are quite apparent.

Remember back many years ago,when the return envelopes started showing up with the window cut-outs so that the bar code of the DVD could be scanned from the outside?

Yes, I remember. That was a looong time ago. And ever since they stopped being an underdog and hopped onto the corporate "A" list things have been going steadily downhill. The menu is utter shit! It mixes in movies I watched, it mixes in TV series with movies, it doesn't show anything (like star rating) but big dumb pictures, it fakes the star rating to feed me some crap I they just bought, etc.. It's as if they're trying to make it difficult to find something on purpose. Just tried to find something to watch yesterday. Wasted 20 minutes, walked away with a headache. And it didn't used to be this way - the interface was informative, you could sort by ratings, you could see what your friends rated and watched. I also think there were movies. That went out of the window, though now there's an annoying bar inviting me to share info with friends. Of course I need to sign in with a facebook account to do so.

Which brings me to my final point. What kind of a half-assed company requires a third party sign in to provide customer feedback?! I don't have a facebook account, and so I can't even send Netflix a message explaining how much they're messing up. The only way I can send a message is leave.

But it's not like they'd read it anyway - evidently they're too busy enjoying their "A"-list corporate circlejerk.

Is a person who blows up banks an econoclast?