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Comment: Re:I know that happened to me. (Score 1) 360

by russbutton (#49695949) Attached to: What Happens To Our Musical Taste As We Age?
I still have a CD player. The Peachtree DAC has USB and optical inputs. But since I've ripped all of my CDs to disk, the CD player gets little use.

I also do location recording of chamber music, so I use the laptop to my editing. I typically burn CD copies of the remastered recordings for the musicians and will check them on the CD player just to make sure everything is right.

Comment: Re:I know that happened to me. (Score 1) 360

by russbutton (#49695089) Attached to: What Happens To Our Musical Taste As We Age?
Old? Having an mp3 player makes you old? Hee, hee. That's funny!

I run a Linn LP-12 turntable (serial #1956) which is 44 years old. It's in tip-top shape. I have a Rega RB-300 arm and a Denon DL-110 cartridge. I run that into a tube preamp (http://www.tubes4hifi.com) which feeds an active crossover for the Linkwitz Orion loudspeaker system. I use an Ubuntu laptop with the Banshee music player for my digital source into a Peachtree DAC. Decent grade, but nothing special Parts Express interconnects and 14 gauge zip cord speaker wire. Everyone who hears my system leaves with envy.

*All* headphones suck compared to what I listen to at home. I don't care if you're listening to an mp3 player, a iPhone or what headphone amp you're running it through. It all sucks in comparison. If you want something that actually sounds good AND is affordable for the Common Man, point your browser at:


Comment: Re:Where the economic system breaks down (Score 1) 257

by russbutton (#49137215) Attached to: 5 White Collar Jobs Robots Already Have Taken

2) If robots do replace all jobs, the "money" comes from sale of goods just the same. Half the workforce are working and doing the work of the other half - the robots produce the goods / services, and the humans lounge at home.

And just who is going to give money to the humans lounging at home with which they will pay for housing, food, clothing, transportation, goods and services? How much money will they be given? Or is this "home" you speak of just going to be a tent in Hooverville?

3) The result of the above is that food and goods become so cheap and plentiful that the concept of "buying" them will seem old hat.

The economic system is one where all goods and services have to be paid for at some level. Even subsidized services like public transportation and health care require some level of payment. Are you suggesting that the long-term unemployed will be government subsidized sufficiently to have an apartment to live in, with Internet, streaming electronic entertainment, beer in the fridge ("free as in beer") and an endless supply of junk food?

5) Who cares? If you have no job and no money but food is so cheap that going an oiling a robot once a month pays for everything - wow... perfect life.

Even if food, goods and housing are amazingly cheap, if you have no money to pay for them, then they are still too expensive for you.

Comment: Where the economic system breaks down (Score 2) 257

by russbutton (#49135029) Attached to: 5 White Collar Jobs Robots Already Have Taken
Our economic system and extensive robotic automation of production are inherently incompatible. Machines can replace labor, but if humans aren't working, then they have no jobs and no money to spend, and then you have nobody for you to sell your goods and services to.

Back in the 1960's, there was a TV show called "The 21st Century", which was narrated by Walter Cronkite. He kept going on about how much more leisure time people would have in the 21st century. What the futurists of the day forgot to consider was that if you put everyone out of a job, nobody is going to have money to spend, and thus there would be no market to sell to.

Comment: A true audiophile is... (Score 1) 249

by russbutton (#49054707) Attached to: How good is your audio equipment?
...someone who listens to live music, and then using that as a reference, tries to reproduce that as well as he or she can reasonably afford at home. Most audiophiles are NOT people with too much money and not enough sense. They're just people who love listening to good music and revel in hearing voices really sound like voices.

You can have truly great sound for an affordable amount of money, but you can have great sound with pre-packaged junk like what you get from Cambridge Soundworks or most anything else you connect to your laptop or iPhone. Affordable great sound is had by purchasing speaker drivers from Madisound and building your own enclosures. It's had by building your own tube amps from tubes4hifi.com. It's had simply by caring about what you're hearing and using a little common sense.

Comment: Back in the day... (Score 1) 249

by russbutton (#49053883) Attached to: How good is your audio equipment?
I'm both a musician and an engineer, and back in my college days some 40 years ago, we didn't have computers, cell phones, Raspberry Pi boxes and all the fun toys y'all have today. No video games. But we did have audio to play with and it's been fun.

Insanely great sound can be had for a reasonable amount of money if you're willing to DIY. Check out the loudspeaker designs of Siegfriend Linkwitz at


It's not cheap, but it sounds every bit as good as gear costing 30 - 100 times as much depending on which design you build. The LXmini can be built for less than $1k and within it's limitations, sounds as wonderful as anything AT ANY PRICE.

There was a time when the experience of live musicians is what defined what the musical experience was, and so good audio was an attempt to recreate that experience at home. What's sad is that today music is consumed rather than seen as the product of live musicians, so good quality audio just isn't valued much anymore.

Comment: Re: Clearly (Score 1) 391

by russbutton (#48813907) Attached to: Sony Thinks You'll Pay $1200 For a Digital Walkman
I'm in agreement with you. I have about 450G of flac formatted music files in my collection on an Ubuntu laptop that I play them off of. Your $1200 would be much better spent on quality audio gear. Actually, that $1200 would get you into a Linkwitz LXmini setup, which is some of the best sound money can buy, at any price. True absolute hi-end audiophile quality at a price human beings can afford.


Comment: Re:What about "The Day After Roswell" book? (Score 1) 197

by russbutton (#48699989) Attached to: CIA on UFO Sightings: 'It Was Us'
My most likely alien scenario is that part of natural evolution is that organic sentients, like humans, evolve technical civilizations that eventually create mechanical sentients. The mechanicals don't require air, water, etc to survive, and may well prefer "living" off-planet. They'd also have a much longer life-span, so to speak, and receive all the energy they require from the light-energy - photo-voltaics or such. Given this, there could well be whole mechanical civilizations existing between the stars or wherever. The Universe is a Big Place. The interests of organics like us would be of no interest to them. And of course mechanicals would rapidly evolve to become an intelligence we couldn't begin to fathom.

We haven't seen aliens because we're just the ants on this one little world.

Comment: Re:And you get to live in Florida!!! (Score 2) 161

by russbutton (#48338881) Attached to: Florida-Based Magic Leap Builds Its Team With Bay Area Hires
I was stationed at Eglin AFB from 1975 - 77. Of course the Florida panhandle really is just Southern Alabama. I was there just 6 weeks when we got hit by Hurricane Eloise. Major damage.

Being white and a military officer definitely had its advantages and enabled me to fly under the radar for the most part. Leaving in '77 was one of the happier days of my life.

Old Times there are not forgotten, look away, look away Dixieland.

Comment: And you get to live in Florida!!! (Score 3, Interesting) 161

by russbutton (#48338295) Attached to: Florida-Based Magic Leap Builds Its Team With Bay Area Hires
The move to Florida will be a bit difficult for man Silicon Valley folks. Florida is a Red State. Most of you aren't old enough to remember the Equal Rights Amendment to the US Consitution, which Florida never ratified. Floridia also failed to ratify the 19th amendment to the US Constitution until 1969. Which amendment is that you ask? That's the one which gave women the right to vote. It was the Law of the Land back in the 1920's because 2/3rds of the states had ratified it, but Florida only accepted it more than 40 years after the fact.

Add in punishing heat, humidity and the fact that you're smack dab in Hurricane Alley with things only getting worse with climate change and you'll realize WHY Florida is a cheaper place to live. But if you don't care about any of that and like cheap seafood and good ol' boy values, then maybe Florida is the state for you!

Comment: Re:Has to be unhackable (Score 1) 320

by russbutton (#48244175) Attached to: What Will It Take To Make Automated Vehicles Legal In the US?
Unhackable... Just as unhacakable as banks, on-line retaliers... sure...

If I'm a terrorist, what could be better than to have hundreds of thousands of networked moving vehicles I could take over from half-way around the planet? How much fun would it be to order it to make a car do a hard left turn as soon as it hits 70 mph, which would only happen on a freeway. And imagine being able to do that to many thousands of cars all across the USA and at random intervals?

Sorry. Autonomous, networked, driverless cars is waaaaaay beyond stupid.

Memory fault - where am I?