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Comment Re:Why stop there? (Score 1) 684

OK, I’ll say it for him: we should never go.

How do you keep your bones and muscles at the same level of efficiency in 40% of Earth’s gravity? How do you deal with an atmosphere which provides little protection against solar radiation? How do you keep from being poisoned by perchlorates?

Some problems have technological solutions. For example, we might one day develop a reactor or some other energy source that will let us move huge amounts of equipment across space to Mars at minimal cost.

But some problems have no solution. How do you survive in the freezing vacuum of space without a space suit? There’s no pill or implantable apparatus that we could dream up which would allow this to happen.

In a similar vein, the challenges I outlined above aren’t likely to be solved by technology, because Mars is just hostile to organic life.

Comment Re:Climate Change Deniers aren't stupid... (Score 2, Informative) 737

Complete bullshit. The IPCC report, which includes scientists from all over the world, concluded that there’s a 95% chance that humans are causing climate change.

The climate deniers are NOT scientists. They are morons like Rick Santorum and Karl Denninger, complete fucking idiots who make the same arguments you do (the temperature didn’t rise at this location, it actually went down at that location...completely specious arguments), despite study after report after conference concluding that climate change is real, and that we are the cause.

We’re looking at global temperatures, not just whether or not it was the hottest year on record in Nothing, Nowhere.

The scientific consensus is in opposition to the climate change deniers’ positions.

Comment This is not new, Tesla has never made a profit (Score 2) 232

In more than ten years, Tesla turned in a quarterly profit one time. It takes real genius to lose money year-after-yearjust like Steve Jobs. Oh wait, Steve’s companies were profitable.

I know that the fanboys love to compare Tesla to Amazon, because Jeff Bezos is a loser too (his company also loses money), but both Tesla and Amazon will ultimately fail because you can’t lose money forever. As soon as Amazon tries to raise prices, people will shop elsewhere. Bezos’ strategy is to undercut competitors in existing markets, and drive them out of business so he can eventually own the market and raise prices. That’s not exactly revolutionary; the Japanese did this with the semiconductor market decades ago. It never works long-term.

I don’t know how to make Tesla profitable. They’ve been losing money on each Model S made since they introduced the model, and their time is running out. If battery-powered cars ever catch on, the average consumer will buy a Ford, Nissan, Chevy, or Toyota, and those companies will make the majority of the profit. I suppose Tesla might be able to pull an Apple and hang on to the high-end of the market (presumably where the highest profit is), but that assumes that these other established auto manufacturers won’t steal sales from them. I wouldn’t take that bet.

Comment Re:Drop the hammer on them. (Score 1) 1307

Look, I sympathize, but I think this is inevitable now. It’s only a matter of time, and a question of just how much the banks are going to lose, and who is going to cover their losses (hint: tell their CEOs you won’t bail them out for their gambling which didn’t pay off). As an American, we already bailed out stupid foreign banks like UBS once, and I certainly don’t want to do it again.

Perhaps those who loaned Greece the money and insisted on the austerity plan in 2010 should have faced reality and accepted that it would never work, but they didn’t. And now, they’re going to take a huge haircut.

It would be great if we could contain this contagion so it only destroyed Europe, but if Europe’s economy collapses I assume it takes down everyone. China’s economy is already in trouble, and while America’s economy isn’t as fragile as it was, we can’t take another 2007-2008.

I’m hedging my investments accordingly.

Comment It’s chess, not checkers (Score 1) 184

The majority of startups will fail. You have to know that going in, that the odds are very much against you.

I just can’t BELIEVE the things that have gotten funding. Who “invests” $5M in a luxury watch site? I thought there were just a lot of bad ideas out there, but I think there are a lot of unsophisticated investors too.

Does anyone ever ask any serious questions? What happens if the government classifies Uber’s drivers as employeess, and not contractors? What happens if advertising on Twitter doesn’t generate enough revenue? What happens to revenue at Google and Facebook if advertising rates plummet?

I think the key to avoiding depression is to have a good idea from the start, not something that relies on advertising to make money. eBay. Netflix. Amazon. Of course, the last two come with other problems.

Comment Re: Tesla Is Good For All (Score 1) 356

And that has been Tesla's argument for the last ten years, yet they still lose about $9,000 on each car they make.

If they can't make a profit on a $100,000 car, there's just no way they'll be able to profit on a $40,000 car.

Tesla doesn't know how to make an electric car for the masses.

Half a dozen big car companies are already doing it. Leave the innovation to them, Musk. You're just a dorky P. T. Barnum.

Comment Re: We the taxayer get screwed. (Score -1, Troll) 356

What difference does that make? I'm willing to bet that Apple, Microsoft, Google, and Facebook employ several times the number of people that Musk does, but don't take anything close to the amount of government money that Musk does.

Without the government teat, Musk is a talentless hack. He builds stuff for the wealthy, and has the poor and middle class taxpayers subsidize it.

What a dick.

Comment Re: Funny, that spin... (Score 1) 421

I'm not claiming that it's going to happen today, or even tomorrow, but as we connect all parts of manufacturing to computers and the Internet, as we have robots performing our manufacturing, how long will it take before we have autonomous machines digging raw materials out of the ground and delivering it to factories?

How long until solar and nuclear allow machines to run for years without needing humans to obtain energy supplies for them?

Eventually, there won't be any plug to pull.

Comment Re: Funny, that spin... (Score 1) 421

Wait, has there ever been a time when a more advanced civilization encounters a less advanced one, and the less advanced civilization prospers?

My point: if we develop self-aware AI, it's over for humanity. I think the real question is are we ever going to be capable of creating AI which becomes self aware? Can human beings create software that complex?

Comment Re: Funny, that spin... (Score 1) 421

Totally. It takes real genius to lose nearly $9,000 for every car you make.

And more genius still to turn a profit in just a single quarter in a decade.

To nearly go out of business, saved only by a government loan. Or a government contract.

And let's not forget a home battery which might be economical in California or Hawaii, but nowhere else.

Pure genius.

Comment Re: No fault insurance, done (Score 1) 408

We can't have loser pays, because the more money you have, the greater the chance you'll win in court, regardless of the merits of the case.

Sorry, but class actions against large companies by injured consumers are just a cost of doing business, and being a huge corporation.

If companies don't like being sued, don't break the law.

And I hold this opinion as someone who was the victim of a frivolous lawsuit. We need patent reform, NOT tort reform.

"The urge to destroy is also a creative urge." -- Bakunin [ed. note - I would say: The urge to destroy may sometimes be a creative urge.]