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Comment: Re:Past due not reported by companies (Score 5, Insightful) 241

by Jane Q. Public (#47562633) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

One reason that I'm sure is a factor in the difference, is that companies are less inclined to bother reporting the "past due" status.

There's another reason that people seem to be ignoring: something that is "past due" will change out of that status, one way or another, after a short time. Something "in collection", not so much. One has to consider why it went into collection in the first place.

Another factor that is rather passed over in OP is that despite a few changes that were made for the better some years ago, they were actually pretty weak changes and credit reporting is still egregiously one-sided today.

Most companies of any size have whole departments that regularly report "past due" debt to collection agencies. But a consumer has many time-consuming and often expensive hoops to jump through to get that back off their record. In many ways it's still guilty-until-proven-innocent.

The fact that over generations people have become used to this travesty of justice just makes it all the more insidious.

Comment: Re:Bullshit.... (Score 1) 130

by nine-times (#47561455) Attached to: A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World
Well no, the metric is real. The question would be whether it's useful or meaningful. You originally implied that it wasn't because:

A "combined score" for speed and ratio is useless, as that relation is not linear.

It seems now that it's not about the relation being linear, but about something else that you won't say. I'm afraid I'm not closer to understanding.

Comment: Re: Bullshit.... (Score 1) 130

by nine-times (#47561433) Attached to: A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World

Decompression time is always real time? So it doesn't matter what computer, what processor, the size of the file, the complexity of the file, or even what kind of file it is? Or do you mean that it needs to be able to be done in real-time (or faster) for some particular use a a particular kind of file on a particular platform that you have in mind?

Comment: Re:Alright! Go Senate bill (Score 5, Interesting) 153

by CrimsonAvenger (#47560195) Attached to: Senate Bill Would Ban Most Bulk Surveillance

TFS notes that Obama is behind this bill.

I find this interesting, since as head of the Executive Branch, he can order the NSA to do what this bill requires without bothering with a law, since no law exists requiring the NSA to collect telephone records on everyone.

And if such a law existed, it would be pretty clearly unconstitutional, and thus null and void....

Comment: Re:Jane/Lonny Eachus goes Sky Dragon Slayer. (Score 1) 292

You are simply proving you don't know what you're talking about.

Almost Latour's entire thesis is that S-B law says net heat transfer is either 0 or in one direction, from the hotter area to the colder. If the roles are reversed, and the colder item becomes the hotter, then the sign changes and the net heat transfer is still only in one direction... from hotter to colder.

And you don't know this because you didn't actually do any actual research about it.You claim "his blog post is still live" but link to an web archive. You haven't researched the topic.

You ignored due diligence, and because of that your "refutation" is nothing but a straw-man, which you continue to deny, either because you know it's a straw-man, and are just doubling down, or because you still refuse to perform the due diligence necessary to make an intelligent argument. The rest of this nonsense falls down because it's all house-of-cards based on your initial misunderstanding of Latour's actual thesis.

Just to be clear: shortly after Latour published that blog post, it became clear that the language he used implied that no radiation at all was absorbed by the warmer body. So a reader could not reasonably be blamed for inferring that. But Latour quickly apologized for the unfortunate wording and corrected himself to make it very clear he was referring to net, not absolute, heat transfer.

As such, just what part of the S-B law do you find controversial?

I don't blame you for inferring -- from that one blog post, which you like to in archive -- that what he meant was any heat transfer, rather than net. But again: he corrected that right away and anybody who knows jack shit about the subject knows that. But you, on the other hand, apparently refused to be bothered with due diligence. Imagine that.

Comment: Re:use SMS (Score 1) 96

by Jane Q. Public (#47559151) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Open Hard- & Software Based Security Token?
I wouldn't say it's the "cheapest" option. If you want to go strictly software, you can use something like BitTorent Sync.

Before anybody jumps on me: I wrote "something like". No, it's not open source. But using iCloud or Azure are proprietary solutions too!

I don't "trust" BitTorrent Sync's security. But odds are it's fine for this kind of use. You can also control access to files by simply putting them in different folders, and giving different people access to them, or give out temporary authorization codes.

So don't misunderstand: I would not endorse its security unless BitTorrent agreed to an open security audit. But it's also a "free" solution. And it's available for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. I think Linux too but I don't remember for sure.

Comment: Re: Bullshit.... (Score 1) 130

by nine-times (#47557039) Attached to: A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World

Ok, so let's start from where you're wrong that "What's important is to save space when broadcasting the content." There are other important things.

Next, what would you like to do then? Change this benchmark to measure decompression speed rather than compression speed? Sure, fine. Let's do that.

Comment: Re:Bullshit.... (Score 1) 130

by nine-times (#47556531) Attached to: A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World

I find it surprising and almost funny how much ire this has drawn from people with some kind of weird "purist" attitude about the whole thing.

It doesn't seem "generally useless" to me, but it would be more appropriate to say that it's "useful only in general cases". I would say that in most circumstances, I'd want compression algorithms that balance speed and compression. I often don't zip my files to maximum compression, for example, because I don't want to sit around waiting for a long time in order to save a very small amount of space. I also don't zip without compression, because speed is not that *that* important. I look for compression that's balanced. "Compress it as much as you can without making me sit around and wait for it."

Similarly, if I were ripping CDs to MP3, and you offered me a different format that would save me 1MB per song, I'd jump on board. If you told me that it would save me that space by requiring 1 hour to compress, and then another hour to decompress before I could play it, I'd tell you to fuck off. If you told me it would drain my battery life on my phone to play it, I'd say it's not worth the trouble.

So I don't know if this is the right metric or the most useful metric, but certainly there could be a metric for compression that deals with "total space savings" vs. "time and complexity in compressing and decompressing". Such a metric could actually be a solid indicator of which compression is useful in a vague general sense.

Comment: Re:Bullshit.... (Score 1) 130

by nine-times (#47556473) Attached to: A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World

How much time it takes to compress is irrelevant, even if you get diminishing returns the longer you take. What's important is to save space when broadcasting the content.

Well, and also that it can be decompressed quickly and with little processing power, or else with enough hardware support that it doesn't matter. Otherwise, it'd take a long time to access and drain power on mobile devices.

Comment: Re:Bullshit.... (Score 1) 130

by nine-times (#47554873) Attached to: A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World

Hence a single score is completely unsuitable to address the "quality" of the algorithm, because there is no single benchmark scenario.

So you're saying that no benchmark is meaningful because no single benchmark can be relied upon to be the final word under all circumstances? By that logic, measuring speed is not meaningful, because it's not the final word in all circumstances. Measuring the compression ratio is meaningless because it's not the final word in all circumstances. The footprint of the code is meaningless because it's not the final word in all circumstances.

Isn't it possible that a benchmark could be useful for some purposes other than being the final word in all circumstances?

Comment: Re:Bullshit.... (Score 1) 130

by nine-times (#47554857) Attached to: A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World

Depending on what you're talking about, providing a huge table of every possible test doesn't make for easy comparisons. In the case of graphics cards, I suppose you could provide a list of every single game, including framerates on every single setting on every single game. It would be hard to gather all that data, and the result would be information overload, and it still wouldn't allow you to make a good comparison between cards. Even assuming you ad such a table, it would probably be more helpful to add or average the results somehow, providing a cumulative score. Of course, then you might want to weight the scores, possibly based on how popular the game is, or how representative it is of the actual capabilities of the card. But if that's the result that's actually helpful, why not design a single benchmark that's representative of what games do, rather than having to test so many games?

Comment: Re:Bullshit.... (Score 1) 130

by nine-times (#47554827) Attached to: A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World

there's not a meaningful way to pick the "best" in that group that everyone will agree on

Metrics often don't provide a definitive answer about what the best thing is, with universal agreement. If I tell you Apple scores highest in customer satisfaction for smartphones last year, does that mean everyone will agree that the iPhone is the best phone? If a bunch of people are working at a helpdesk, and one closes the most tickets per hour, does that necessarily mean that he's the best helpdesk tech?

It's true that a lot of people misuse metrics, thinking that they always provide an easy answer, without understanding what they actually mean. That doesn't mean that metrics are useless.

If you're comparing a bunch of cars that get 32-35 mpg and go 130-140 mph, there's not a meaningful way to pick the "best" in that group that everyone will agree on

Yeah, but that's a really dumb metric since most people don't actually care what the top speed of a car is. Or to be more truthful, only morons care about top speed unless it's below 80mph, since you basically shouldn't be driving your car that fast. So really, in a metric like this, the "top speed" isn't a metric of "faster is better". It's a metric of "fast enough is good enough".

But if you were in the habit of doing car reviews, it might make sense to take a bunch of assessments, qualitative and quantitative, like acceleration and handling, MPG, physical attractiveness, additional features, and price (lower is better), and then weigh and average each score. That would enable you to come up with a final score which, while subjective, makes some attempt to enable an overall ranking of the cars. In fact, this is the sort of thing that reviewers sometimes do.

A committee is a group that keeps the minutes and loses hours. -- Milton Berle

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