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Comment: Re:Southwest Boarding Policies (Score 1) 928

Are you kidding? You must not have had status with any other airline. Trust me, other airlines treat their frequent fliers much better than SW treats theirs. Expedited security, special customer service numbers, the ability to choose (weeks in advance) the best seats on the plane, early boarding (without the ridiculous need to race to the computer and check-in 24 hrs ahead of time), free alcoholic beverages, frequent flier status bestowed on anyone traveling with me on the same reservation, free access to airport lounges... I get all this and more in exchange for my loyalty (and 60 or so flights per year). I would never consider SW anymore.

I did fly SW (and was relatively happy with them) when I was 22 and wanted a sub-$170 round trip ticket to Vegas or something. I only flew now and then and had no issues with being treated like livestock. THAT is the kind of customer SW has catered to for forever. Heck, when they started, they were designed to compete against regional bus transportation (think Greyhound). I'm not making this up. You can find it in any SW case study.

They've just started trying to appeal to business fliers and they're adding loyalty programs to attract them. IMO, they are a very long way from really competing in that space at all.

SW is a well-run business and I'm sure if they commit to being successful with frequent business travelers they will be.

Comment: Re:My Cancel experience with Comcast (Score 1) 401

by ravenscar (#47462291) Attached to: Comcast Customer Service Rep Just Won't Take No For an Answer

Yes - this exactly. I did the same. The lady that helped me was quick, courteous, and clearly not a trained sales person. Saving me as a customer wasn't in her job description. Getting things done quickly and efficiently in order to help the next customer in line was. If you have a Comcast service center in your area this is the only way to go (not to mention it makes equipment returns much easier).

Comment: Not a duty of the Executive Branch (Score 4, Insightful) 382

by ravenscar (#47458441) Attached to: White House Punts On Petition To Allow Tesla Direct Sales

These White House petitions drive me a little nuts. I appreciate that they bring publicity to an issue, but they also demonstrate a fundamental misunderstanding of how the US Government is designed to work. The issue is state and local laws. These laws don't contradict federal laws. What do people want the President to do about it? If people are upset about their local laws they need to work at the local level - petitioning state law makers.

The argument could be made that this is interstate commerce. Great, then work with your national representatives to propose federal legislation that would overrule the local laws. It very likely would have to stand up to a court challenge, but the courts have been exceptionally liberal in their interpretation of interstate commerce. If the local governments fail to comply THEN the executive branch will get involved in enforcement.

It seems like people want the Executive and Judicial branches making the laws. This isn't how it's supposed to happen - for good reason. This reflects not only a bad approach to government, but it is also a sign of just how completely broken Congress is. How said that the only ones who seem able to push any sort of legislation through Congress are big businesses. Everyone else is stuck looking for some sort of alternative. Sadly, those alternatives, should they end up successful, will just result in a less representative, more authoritarian government.

Comment: Hulu: Television for Women (Score 1) 138

by ravenscar (#47451337) Attached to: Three-Year Deal Nets Hulu Exclusive Rights To South Park

They must be trying to attract a male audience. I took a look at Hulu. All I saw was the crappy, prime time network crap that has been engineered for middle aged women of below average IQ. Revenge, Hell's Kitchen, The Kardashians, etc. The shows that might be interesting (Doctor Who and a few others) aren't exclusive and can be seen sans annoying commercials on Amazon and/or Netflix.

When I think of the South Park audience I don't think Hulu. That's probably what Hulu was thinking - what a way to attract new subscribers! Here's the thing. People who want to watch South Park still aren't going to Hulu. They'll just torrent the episodes (sans commercials) for free. I can't imagine that 80 million is going to net much for Hulu, but good for Parker and Stone.

Comment: Paint it on stairs (Score 1) 238

I want to see this painted on stairs. It would remove all sense of depth. I bet it would be really odd to watch somebody walk up them. Heck, an escalator would be cool to. Imagine what something like this could do for live theater, rides at Disney, etc. Also imagine what it would be like to be in a room with all surfaces covered in this material - seeing someone laying on a bed or sitting in a chair...

Comment: Re:Government control of our lives... (Score 2) 155

by ravenscar (#47432191) Attached to: Amazon Seeks US Exemption To Test Delivery Drones

While I agree with the spirit of your post in many ways, this is different as it involves airspace. If you own property, you have certain rights to the air over it. When flying things were an obvious link to the future it became necessary to think about the world in a new way. It wouldn't be practical for flying things to obtain rights of passage from every property owner. Similarly, the rights of property owners to the sanctity of their airspace had to be considered. Someone had to think about how to govern the air. Congress could, but it would be far too involved and require far too many frequent changes for Congress to do an effective job. As such, provisions were made to delegate this authority to the FAA. This is similar, in spirit, to the FCC which also governs things (radio waves) that enter your property with or without your permission.

I agree with your concern about concentration of power in the Executive Branch, but with the pace of change in this particular space, I just don't see a preferable alternative. Perhaps dividing the organizations - rules created by a committee that is appointed by and reports to Congress with enforcement remaining in the Executive Branch. Still, I imagine this would result in unacceptably slow rule changes and updates by the rule makers.

Comment: Re:How many? (Score 5, Insightful) 342

by ravenscar (#46825531) Attached to: Aereo To SCOTUS: Shut Us Down and You Shut Down Cloud Storage

Ahahahahaha! Are you joking? Comcast and Time Warner ARE content companies. That's the whole problem. Content providers should be completely separate from internet providers. When they aren't, the internet/content providers have incentive to make sure their content is unfairly promoted/protected on their networks. If you think Comcast/Time Warner will ever stand up to content companies I've got some wonderful property in the Everglades in which you might be interested.

Comment: Re:Definitely not for power users (Score 1) 103

by ravenscar (#46475837) Attached to: Tested: Asus Chromebox Based On Haswell Core i3

I completely agree. I picked up a Chromebook just to try it out. It has these things going for it: Cheap, acceptable display, great battery life, boots from a powered off state in around 10 seconds, and is pretty solid at internet browsing. I don't store anything on it and it was $200 so I'm not overly concerned if it's lost, broken, or stolen. I find myself using it frequently around the house for light internet tasks where a keyboard is desired (which is fairly often).

A big plus that I didn't expect - remote desktop works really well. In the event that I'm sitting on the couch and I find myself needing to do something that requires different software or more processing power, I just remote into my home server and do the work there.

I can't say that I have any complaints at the price point. Of course, I don't expect to do things for which it wasn't designed.

Comment: Re:Let's democratize this (Score 3) 125

by ravenscar (#46464087) Attached to: IAU To Uwingu: You Can't Name That Martian Crater Either

Exactly. The IAU might be able to create the name by which scientists refer to the craters (so that they have the same name in all languages). In real life, the craters will be called whatever people decide to call them popularly. It's like the bellis perennis. You might hear scientists refer to it that way. To the rest of the English speaking world it's a daisy.

Comment: Re:Chromecast Vs. Roku (Score 1) 289

by ravenscar (#46307435) Attached to: ISP Fights Causing Netflix Packet Drops

Upgrade your Roku. I had the same issue. Upgrading to the newest Roku made a world of difference. I'm not sure why, but I would guess Netflix has updated their streaming protocol and that making the most of what it has to offer requires more hardware than the original Roku has on tap. If nothing else, you get a much nicer Netflix interface on the new Roku.

Side note - my solution worked for me, but might not for you. Fortunately, Rokus are fairly common so perhaps you could have a friend or neighber drop by with theirs so you could see if there is a difference.

Never tell people how to do things. Tell them WHAT to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity. -- Gen. George S. Patton, Jr.