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Comment: Re:Home / Work (Score 1) 245

by Just Some Guy (#47946349) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: What's In Your Home Datacenter?

The Synology has a nice backup program let's me to back up data to an Amazon S3 account.

It also has a Glacier backup, which is great for huge backups that you don't need to restore often (or ever). I use Time Machine to backup our laptops to our DS412+, and it pushes those backup volumes up to Glacier once a week. If something catastrophic happened like a massive earthquake or a house fire, we could recover all our most important data (including irreplaceable like our photos) just by replacing the hardware and clicking "restore". For less than $10 a month, that's a great feeling.

Comment: Re: I never thought I'd say this... (Score 1) 297

We're talking about simple, empirically verified economic facts.

Here is where we part ways. While I recognize that economics can use a lot of scientific tools, it is not a science. I've seen some very good analysis done of past events, but I've never seen a model that predicts a future result with any kind of error that wouldn't make a real scientist blush. I have very, very little faith that an economist can proclaim something in the future as being certain. That is, despite your protests to the contrary - this is in fact an ideological discussion. Your arguments are all rock-solid, but start from the assumption that economics is a science... as a discipline it simply does not have that kind of track record.

Comment: The Titanic is UNSINKABLE. (Score 3, Interesting) 213

Ah, hubris! One of my favorite old-timey sins.

You are of course correct. The signal must become analog at some point to make it into your head, and we have had the capability to capture analog signals since the dawn of the television age. You can crack open LCD panels and intercept signals for a more modern high tech version of this concept, of course.

But you are forgetting the other side of the equation. When when someone makes that statement - "THIS CANNOT EVER BE PIRATED" - you are throwing down the gauntlet. And invariably some bored teenager will say "oh really is that so?" and make them eat their words. Usually by the following Saturday. Yes you can do an analog capture but by the time you warm up your soldering gun some kid in the Netherlands will have already got the torrent up.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go watch a Blu-Ray movie on my Linux box.

Comment: Re: I never thought I'd say this... (Score 1) 297

You are preaching at me like I'm not the converted. I come at you from a base libertarian, market friendly ideology. But it's not a stretch to recognize that reality and ideology don't always align. I could definitely get on board with deregulating the food industry. But whatever system is in place, I want a guarantee that excess food will be produced in 99%+ years. When it comes to food, I'm not willing to put trust in a private system that is inherently non-ideal to follow your theory of what an ideal system would do.

The current, very imperfect system of agriculture has a very good track record in the "not starving" department.

Comment: Re: I never thought I'd say this... (Score 1) 297

by MightyYar (#47937955) Attached to: FCC Chairman: Americans Shouldn't Subsidize Internet Service Under 10Mbps

The reasoning is sound, but I don't think the numbers work out. A $60,000 internet connection (which is probably more than the price of the house) - even if amortized over 10 years - is going to be around $600/month. That's roughly $500 more than the most expensive city plans... are salaries really going to increase by $6000 per household? I mean, it is possible, but I find it more likely that people would just move somewhere that already has internet, phone, and electricity.

Comment: Re: I never thought I'd say this... (Score 1) 297

by MightyYar (#47937901) Attached to: FCC Chairman: Americans Shouldn't Subsidize Internet Service Under 10Mbps

You can absolutely work to change the market manipulations to those more in line with your own theories - that is not what I meant.

I'm asserting that those in power will - in aggregate - always look out for their interests. If your interests don't align with the powerful, then you really only have the choice of removing the power or trying to sway them. Good luck with the latter.

Comment: Re: I never thought I'd say this... (Score 1) 297

by MightyYar (#47937851) Attached to: FCC Chairman: Americans Shouldn't Subsidize Internet Service Under 10Mbps

Even if such a "sharp rise and fall" were not just fear mongering

What? Starvation is a historical fact, and in fact still continues today. It is not fear mongering, it is what happens when you do not have enough food.

That kind of reasoning applied about 300 years ago.

I'm not talking about famine, a la Irish potato or Ethiopia. I'm talking about broad starvation. Dust bowl, Great Depression, that sort of thing. You don't need famine to destabilize the country.

But sharp rises and falls in food prices are almost always the result of misguided government policies.

Drought? Flood? Pests? Disease?

Between markets, insurance, worldwide production, and modern food storage, these concerns simply do not exist.

They still exist, but the interplay is much more complicated and harder to predict. What would a fuel crisis do to overseas shipping? What about a war? You mention food storage... just who is storing excess food without some subsidy to do so? Where is this excess food shipping capacity that you will tap when domestic production hits a snag?

I am going to store the food, trade options, and/or diversify geographically.

And what happens when prices are high? You sell out your stocks and there is nothing left in inventory should something go wrong.

All of that stabilizes and regulates food production better than any government policy can.

I'm not suggesting central planning or anything of the sort. I'm suggesting subsidizing food production. You are absolutely right - it will ruin the efficiency of the markets. However, I contend that paying a little extra is worth the insurance.

Let's say that you're argument has won the day and that a pure market approach will keep us all fed and happy. Is it not fair for me to point out that it is impossible to achieve a pure market approach? That corruption and crime will always exist? Couldn't corruption or fraud undermine the market system when a stressful event occurs? Why shouldn't we accept that as fact and build in some safeguards, even if it spoils the efficiency a bit?

Comment: Re: I never thought I'd say this... (Score 1) 297

by MightyYar (#47937421) Attached to: FCC Chairman: Americans Shouldn't Subsidize Internet Service Under 10Mbps

True food security is being able to grow and raise your own food.

That works great until you are hit with a flood, drought, disease, etc. Then it's back to the store for you.

Food security is simply having enough food to feed the population. You have to grow excess food 99.9% of the time so that you have a very low chance of ever falling short.

Comment: Re: I never thought I'd say this... (Score 1) 297

by MightyYar (#47937373) Attached to: FCC Chairman: Americans Shouldn't Subsidize Internet Service Under 10Mbps

I think it would be good for our democracy to stop both farming and rural subsidies

With most things I would agree with you. Food is different. We absolutely, positively cannot be subject to the sharp rise and fall of capital markets where it concerns food. A stock market crash causes a lot of trouble, but no one seriously suggests abandoning it. If there was a shortage of food, things would be very different. All of our libertarian ideals go by the wayside when starving is involved.

Food markets can't be very efficient anyway. The lag between an uptick in demand and, well, a whole growing season is simply too long. People can't wait 6 months to eat. The solution is to always produce more than you need and then throw away or store the extra. The private market can't do this because the extra would appear on the market and depress prices below the cost of production.

Wasn't there something about a PASCAL programmer knowing the value of everything and the Wirth of nothing?

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