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Comment: Tax everywhere (Score 4, Insightful) 292

by prestonmichaelh (#45136741) Attached to: Irish Government May Close Apple's Biggest Tax Loophole
I don't understand why countries like Ireland or Bermuda or wherever don't all just charge a small tax of some kind (like say 5%) that keeps the companies coming there, but gets them tons of money. What does Bermuda get out of having Apple "based" in Bermuda if they don't get any tax revenue? They get no additional jobs or property taxes (except maybe a mailbox rental).

Comment: Re:There is more to life than buying things. (Score 1) 187

This argument seems backwards though, somewhat. I guess the underlying factor is self-control. If you have the control to only buy what you need, then having targeted ads can aid in saving money.

In the original example, finding a 2 for 1 deal at a nearby restaurant would save you 50%. If you aren't going to eat out or are eating out alone, then ignoring the ad shouldn't be a problem.

There are something I by regularly and actively seek out sales for. If, through targeted advertising, the sellers could let me know that product XYZ that I've been buying each month for the past year is on sale at store ABC this month, it would save me money and time.

Comment: Re:stupid (Score 1) 558

by prestonmichaelh (#44481173) Attached to: Campaign To Kill CAPTCHA Kicks Off

Twilio. Facebook Connect. Twitter @Anywhere. OAuth. OpenID. I wasn't posting that, but it is kinda obvious what some better ideas are.

So on a business site, you would require a user to log in with an account from another site/system before they could contact you to show interest, request a quote, etc.?

I understand for web forums, etc, but my issue is contact forms on business sites. Most users don't want to share their facebook or twitter accounts and haven't heard of most of the other options.

I did see another post about combining the hidden form element technique with a short submission timer that looked interesting though.

Comment: Re:stupid (Score 1) 558

by prestonmichaelh (#44480949) Attached to: Campaign To Kill CAPTCHA Kicks Off

Not if you employed other technical measures. Search around a bit and you'll find captchas are unnecessary.

In all sincerity, can you post some links? I'll even take an insulting "lmgtfy" that end up with some good results.

I hate captchas, but all the other methods I have seen and tried (hidden form elements, javascript checks, etc.) all break down in one place or another.

Comment: Kickstarter vs VC (Score 1) 44

I think the interesting thing that seems to go somewhat unmentioned is that the main advantage of funding via Kickstarter vs vc or the industry is that with Kickstarter, worst case you just have to give out swag (t-shirts, dvds, etc.) that you can factor the costs into your fund raising.

With vc or industry funding, they are going to expect a percentage of the profits or gross. What I would like to see is a Kickstarter where if you fund above a certain level, you get a certain percentage of profits (even if it is really small).

Comment: Re:Menu 'dimensioniality' aside (Score 1) 80

by prestonmichaelh (#43312601) Attached to: Roku Finally Gets a 2D Menu System
This actually works really well:

http://how-to.wikia.com/wiki/How_to_watch_Netflix_(Watch_Instantly)_in_Linux It uses WINE, but the ppa sets everything up for you (if you are using Ubuntu). For things like TVs and Rokus, they have special, non-silverlight DRM built in that Netflix has specified. The problem with making truly native Linux client is that, like most things for Linux, the market share isn't there to make it cost effective.

Comment: Re:Dish, Direct, Antenna, or cut the cord (Score 2) 376

by prestonmichaelh (#41663375) Attached to: FCC To Allow Cable Companies To Encrypt Over-the-Air Channels
If your kids are young, then cut it now. A few Rokus and a Netflix streaming subscription and you are set. I have a 4 year old and if needed, she can work Netflix on the Roku herself. Doesn't mind watching the same seasons/episodes of Dora, Fresh Beat Band, Franklin, Barney, etc. over and over and over. I find most kids to be like that.

People like to complain a lot about Netflix content (or lack there of), but they actually have quite a bit of kids content.

Comment: Re:All on consumer grade drives..... (Score 2) 273

by prestonmichaelh (#41597327) Attached to: How To Add 5.5 Petabytes and Get Banned From Costco
You should read on how they build their systems. One of the ways they keep costs so low is using consumer grade hardware with the idea that it will fail. In general, consumer grade hard drives have about the same failure rate as "enterprise grade", they just usually have lower transfer rates. When your clients are syncing over 768k DSL uploads or even 3-5 Mbps cable upload speeds, hard drive speed is not going to be your bottleneck.

They actually have a guy whose job it is to just go around a day or two a week through their data center and replace the dead drives. Due to the redundancy they built into their systems, a drive failure isn't a big deal or really unexpected.

Comment: Re:Makes no sense (Score 2) 273

by prestonmichaelh (#41597299) Attached to: How To Add 5.5 Petabytes and Get Banned From Costco
It actually makes good sense as part of a complete backup system.

What happens to your data when your office/house/whatever with the 2 or 3 TB drives burns down with them in it, or someone breaks in and steals your desktop and the USB drive you left sitting on top of it?

Depending on the circumstances, I usually recommend RAID of some kind if possible, a USB/External Hard Drive on-site, and then some kind of off-site backup.

If your internal drive dies, if you had RAID, you just replace the dead drive. If no RAID, then you restore from your External backup. If you had a fire/theft or other major loss, you restore from web/off-site. In the case of BackBlaze, they offer 3 restoration options, included zip download of files, or FedEx thumb drive or external drive for additional cost.

Comment: Re:Virgin Mobile is looking interesting in the USA (Score 1) 375

by prestonmichaelh (#41541599) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Cell Phone Carrier In the US?

$30 a month buys 300 minutes, unlimited texting, and unlimited 3g/4g (throttled after 2.5 gigs)

I'm a Virgin Mobile customer, so a few clarifications:

  • The $30 a month is only with auto-pay with an iPhone. All other phones are $35 (unless you are grandfathered in or use the current YMMV glitch of switching an older phone to the $25 per month plan)
  • They currently only have 1 4g phone, the HTC Evo V. 4G isn't actually throttled at all, but it uses Sprints older Wi-Max network, so expect speeds around 2-4 Mbps and spotty 4G coverage depending on where you live. All other phones (including the iPhones) are 3G only

All that said, I switched from AT&T to VM a while back and couldn't be happier. They speeds are slower and data coverage is worse than any of the major 4, but I pay half what I did before for my service, so it is worth it to me.

Also, in general, if you are going to be in a major city and want the best coverage (regardless of cost) go Verizon. If you are in a more remote area, and want the best coverage, go AT&T.

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