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Comment: Re:Psychology lesson (Score 1) 271

by njnnja (#49054251) Attached to: Peak Google: The Company's Time At the Top May Be Nearing Its End

I think you are confusing yourself by overthinking things. A 20% exponential growth function doesn't have a slope of 1.2x, it has a slope of ln(1.2)*exp(ln(1.2)*x). But if you miswrote and didn't mean to use the word "slope" and just meant "Y" then actually Y=X^2 is a closer way of thinking about exponential growth than Y=1.2X. I'm assuming your background is computer science, so think of big O notation. If someone mistook O(exp(n)) for O(n^2) you would think they were overly simplifying but for small n it probably not too bad. But if the mistook O(exp(n)) for O(n) (linear) then you would know they are totally off the mark. In the same way, mistaking an exponential for a quadratic is a silly, stupid error, but mistaking it for a linear function is really wrong

Comment: Re:Psychology lesson (Score 1) 271

by njnnja (#49050437) Attached to: Peak Google: The Company's Time At the Top May Be Nearing Its End

The process that gives you that fish size is in fact an exponential process, so in your example, fish size grows exponentially. It is because you say "bigger each year", which implies the recursive relationship S(t+1) = 1.2 * S(t) where S(t) is the size of the fish caught in year t. So if you catch a 1 pound fish in year 0, then you catch a 1.2 pound fish in year 1, and a 1.44 pound in year 2, a 1.728 pound in year 3, etc. S(t+1) = 1.2 * S(t) can in fact be represented as the exponential growth model S(t) = S0 * exp(lambda * t), but that is an exercise left to the reader.

It's not trickery, it's just a label for the particular math used to model the process. And if a process satisfies that model then there is nothing wrong with using that term. But if you are pointing something else out then please reply.

Comment: Re:Soap Box time! (Score 4, Informative) 271

by njnnja (#49047947) Attached to: Peak Google: The Company's Time At the Top May Be Nearing Its End

If

Rx = revenue in year x
R0 = revenue in base year (year 0)
then 20% growth means: Rx = R0 * (1 + .2)^x

represented as:

Rx = R0 * exp[(log(base e)(1 + .2)) * x]

Which is exponential growth as seen at Wolfram where lambda = log(base e)(1.2) (and every mathematician I have ever known). Not sure what you mean when you say exponential growth, but it's not the mathematical definition.

Your soap box is quite misinformed.

Comment: Re:Another silly decision (Score 1) 480

by njnnja (#49038143) Attached to: The Mathematical Case For Buying a Powerball Ticket

A depression is a TERRIBLE time to own any asset. You can move to follow a job if you own a house by simply selling your house. You will probably do so at a loss during a depression, but if you were renting you wouldn't get any money out when you move either. And if you were renting, and saving money on the side, whatever you invested in would also have also gone down because *it's a depression*.

Comment: Re:So presumably..... (Score 2) 208

by njnnja (#49033203) Attached to: Elementary OS: Why We Make You Type "$0"

No of course not. They only keep a prorated part of their contributions to reflect the work that they have actually done and pass the bulk of it to the original writers of the code (or Canonical, the Linux Foundation, or FSF to the extent that they can't track down the original authors). It says right there in the blog posting...

Hmmm it's there somewhere...they say

"We believe that if we want to see the world of open source software grow and compete at the same level as closed source software, we should encourage users to pay for its development;"

so I'm sure they are doing their part to pay for its development.

Comment: Re:"Not intentional". Right. (Score 2) 370

by njnnja (#49029753) Attached to: Samsung Smart TVs Injected Ads Into Streamed Video

The fact is that in general, people want to own their stuff, not have their stuff own them. Apple taught manufacturers a very poor lesson; namely, the way to make huge profits is to create and cultivate a walled garden that the manufacturer controls and collects the tolls. But Apple wasn't successful because it has a walled garden, it is successful because plenty of people with lots of disposable income like the Apple user experience. You can argue that the walled garden is a necessary condition to the iPhone user experience, and at the very least it makes it easier to define the user experience when you control everything, however necessary != sufficient.

Good UI takes lots of hard work from talented developers, designers, and artists. Apple may not always succeed at this (e.g. maps) but it seems that no other big manufacturer is willing to put in the hard work to make a product that people actually like. So instead of making money by "locking" people into a system that they choose of their own free will, they try to make money by 1) making crap software to save money on costs, and 2) monetizing everything the possibly can, from DRM on a coffee pod to putting commercials into locally stored video.

Comment: Re:If only the UK navy could follow suit (Score 1) 517

by njnnja (#48997621) Attached to: The US Navy Wants More Railguns and Lasers, Less Gunpowder

Because the US has the most to lose if every shipment of iphones from China or oil tanker from the Gulf had a big bulls-eye on its stern. International trade becomes very expensive without overwhelming naval power to deter every two bit dictator and warlord who can afford to put a 50mm cannon on an old fishing vessel from trying to steal a big boat every once in a while. And standing navies are a lot cheaper than arming every merchant ship, even more so if you aren't the country that's supporting it.

Comment: Re:Schwab - max 8 chars! (Score 5, Insightful) 271

by njnnja (#48991849) Attached to: Why Gmail Has Better Security Than Your Bank

The worst thing about this isn't that it means you have to choose a weak password, but rather that it is very likely that they are storing passwords in cleartext and somebody could get access to huge numbers of accounts with a single breach. If they were just using javascript to ensure password length, then they could change the code for the form validation immediately. So the fact that it hasn't been fixed yet means that the password length restriction has to do with something on their back end that will require real work to fix. But a proper back end system should salt and hash the passwords and the site would have no idea how long your password is. Since they know and care how long the password is, they probably aren't hashing

Comment: Not an overreaction (Score 3, Insightful) 208

by njnnja (#48973839) Attached to: Art Project Causes Atlanta Police To Close Highway and Call Bomb Squad

I'll be the first to complain about the stupidity of zero tolerance policies and curtailments of civil rights in the name of the war on terror (or war on drugs), but that is clearly surpassed by the stupidity of duct taping a box to a transportation chokepoint without telling the people who own and operate it.

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