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Comment: Solar panels and useful rooftops (Score 1) 145 145

Where are we gonna put the solar panels?

How about on the roofs that don't have gardens on them? Not like we're going to put a garden on every roof. At some point there is really no excuse for not putting solar panels or gardens or something productive on rooftops.

Comment: Re: Internet without evangelicals = Win (Score 1) 250 250

Regarding that particular war. The real "problem" is that war can be inherently really ugly and dirty. If we really wanted to "play to win", we'd have have to give up the idea of dignity and good public relations. The other side had the advantage of filtering the media for their constituents (at least the constituents they cared about). We didn't really have that option.

If we got down and dirty, we'd end up looking down and dirty to the whole world and ourselves. I won't make a value judgement either way here, only point out the very difficult PR side of choosing that path.

The cold war was as much of a PR game as it was a territory game. Both sides were trying to sell their system to the world. Both factors, territory and PR had to be accounted for, and in this case both factors were in conflict, giving us no easy choice. One or the other would likely have to take a hit.

Comment: Variety (Score 1) 293 293

In general, the study trends are pointing to rotating positions periodically. Standing sometimes, sitting others, and shifting positions in general throughout the day. There is no ONE right work position.

How to implement that furniture-wise is another story. I'm envisioning something like a dental chair where the height and position can be controlled via a set of buttons or levers. The desk would be higher up so that one can sit, stand, or do something in-between without having to move the desk (thus simplifying the system).

However, there could be downsides to such:

Comment: Put away the tinfoil hat (Score 0) 277 277

I listen to music on my iPod and I happened to own a dumb phone.

Your choice and that's fine but it puts you firmly in the minority these days.

And while a new phone would be great, not only can I not afford it, the amount of eavesdropping that can be done on a smart phone really makes it a stupid purchase this day & age.

Strange that I have nearly minimum wage employees working for me that somehow manage to afford a smartphone. Maybe you should use some of your time to seek a better job instead of posting here. Anyway it's quaint how you think that not having a smartphone makes you immune to eavesdropping. I think you might have a little of the paranoia. Here's a clue, "dumb" phones are just as easy to track as smartphones.

The convenience of a smartphone, does it really outweigh the negative aspects of having a device that records everything you do?

Once you put away your tinfoil hat the answer is yes.

Comment: Zune was a bad value not a bad product (Score 1) 277 277

I loved the brown version. It was beautiful. Whether it was ahead of its time, or behind its time, or just too niche, I don't know. I just know it looked fantastic in person and literally like crap in pictures.

The Zune wasn't a terrible product. It was a terrible value. The iPod rules the market at the time. For Zine to matter it either needed to be substantially better than the iPod or substantially cheaper to get people to care about it. It needed to be a better value proposition. Instead it was roughly comparable for a similar price. If your choice is between two effectively identical products, people are generally going to pick the one that is more popular and better known. People already knew the iPod worked pretty well and it already had the mind share. Microsoft hugely overestimated the value of their brand and provided nothing more than a me-too product with little to set it apart.

As for other compelling reasons: the Zune had better sound quality, better software, and a better screen than the iPod.

I think it's pretty much safe to say that almost nobody agrees with you on this. Even if all those things were technically better like you claim, they weren't enough better that it mattered. The sound from an iPod and the screen quality was more than good enough for all but the pickiest of customers. Zune did not change that. As for the software Zune being "better", I think you'll have a hard to proving that objectively even allowing for the fact that iTunes is widely regarded as rather poor quality. It certainly wasn't better enough to matter and I cannot recall any press proclaiming it to be even the slightest bit revolutionary or superior.

Comment: Re:Why nobody cares about Zune (Score 2) 277 277

I can't figure out how people use a phone for music; my phone has 16 GB capacity, and I have 105 GB of music

Really? You can't figure that out? My phone as a 128GB capacity and my music library is less than that. No disrespect intended but you have what is basically a cheap phone by today's standards. I never, ever need to sync my phone to change the music on it and honestly I couldn't be bothered even if storage capacity were an issue.

Constantly re-syncing my phone based on what I feel like listening too gets to be very tiring.

So don't. I never have. Buy a phone with a large enough capacity and get on with life.

Comment: Where is the irony? (Score 1) 277 277

1970s fashions? I think this got embraced by hipsters early and became very mainstream.

Where is the irony? There are all sorts of resurgences of old fashions all the time. But it isn't obviously ironic. I was alive during the 70s and trust me when I say that they haven't brought back 70s fashions in any meaningful way. Fashions cycle in and out all the time and I've seen stuff from previous decades brought back multiple times. Thin ties were in during the 80s and they are back again now. Happens all the time but it's rarely ironic.

I have a friend who was in the vintage clothing business and he can define where he could buy 1970s fashion clothes in bales by the pound one month and the next he was having to negotiate prices by the item from his suppliers. Not long after that they become unobtainable except as yard sale or Goodwill finds and new iterations of the same fashions were showing up new in department stores.

That's the way fashion works but I'm not seeing the irony here. Throwback fashion is routinely a thing. There's even old jokes about wearing something so long it comes back into fashion.

Hipster bars of the era tended to focus on "vintage" brands like PBR or Rolling Rock and this embrace of older, niche products seem to have something to do with the rise of craft alternatives (well, and quality, too..).

PBR and Rolling Rock are just cheep beers. There may be a bit of irony going on with PBR though I'm not entirely convinced.

Comment: Ironic use of vintage? (Score 1) 277 277

How about Pabst Blue Ribbon beer?

Not obviously ironic though a reasonable example if true. The evidence is ambiguous and seems mostly anecdotal. Still I'd need a LOT more evidence to start to buy the notion that ironic embrace of vintage is a meaningful way to cause old products to see a resurgence. Not saying it can't happen but I just don't really see examples of it happening in the real world.

Or the otherwise inexplicable growth of vinyl record sales?

Nothing ironic there that I can see. There are people who earnestly believe that vinyl sounds better and the audiophile crowd is willing to spend absurd amounts of money chasing even the chance of "better sound". Personally I think that the supposed superiority of vinyl wouldn't stand up to double blind testing like so much other nonsense that comes from audiophiles but that is a separate issue.

"Poor man... he was like an employee to me." -- The police commisioner on "Sledge Hammer" laments the death of his bodyguard