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Comment: Re:feels manufactured. (Score 1) 286

by scamper_22 (#49267793) Attached to: Elon Musk Pledges To End "Range Anxiety" For Tesla Model S

Ummm no.

I've been close to running out of gas a few times in my life. Most of the times involved long distance travel on highways away from cities with sparse gas stations and you just say F**K, why didn't I fill up at the last one. I had no idea it would be 200k until the next one.

There is simply a lot of anxiety in that. For whatever reason, I've never actually ran out of gas. But that fear is real and lucky for me, only happened on a few trips in rural areas when I was younger. Now I just know better.

I can only imagine driving an electric car, the kind of anxiety that would result. Heck, it might even affect regular day to day driving unless you live in an area with lots of recharge stations...

1. fewer recharge stations. With gas, you just kind of expect them everywhere. Heck, that's the attitude that got me in trouble on those rural trips when I was younger. I just magically expected gas stations.

2. Shorter range

3. longer recharge. My internal rational for now getting into low gas situations is simply that I convinced myself that the quick 5 minutes it takes to refill my gas is worth it to always keep my tank at least half full. I'm not sure how that equation changes with electric.

Comment: Re:seems about the same (Score 3, Interesting) 320

I'll add to this.

We have to separate 'science' from 'scientists' in a similar way you have to separate any practice from its practitioners.

Science is a really good methodology to get at the *truth* mainly by testing your hypothesis (scientific method).

In the end though, scientists are just people, as in any other group. They can and will be influenced by pride, status, money, power, any other group of people.

It's a tough line of argument where people end up talking about 'true science'

It's not just scientific journals, people will sometimes dismiss entire areas of 'science', especially in the social sciences/economics. Yet, from the outside perspective, its the same voices of experts touting studies and reports to get at the *truth*.

In the end though from a social perspective, how can we guarantee scientists adhere to the scientific method and search for truth, any more than catholic priests adhere to their creed (while raping little children).

I don't they will as scientists are just people. Put more power, money, politics, institutions under the scientific banner, and I think human behavior will take precedence over the adherence to the scientific theory.

Comment: What's the rush (Score 1) 341

by scamper_22 (#49153989) Attached to: We Stopped At Two Nuclear Bombs; We Can Stop At Two Degrees.

I just don't get the big rush. I understand that green house gases are rising temperatures. I understand the possible impacts of rising water levels, more chaotic weather, changing farm lands...

But lets be clear. This polluting has been going on for the industrial revolution. Over two hundred years.

We're already getting fairly competitive hybrid and electric cars. Most car companies have decent models. Revolutionary firms like Tesla are there. Who knows what Google and Apple will do.

We already have a fair amount of renewables and it is continuing to increase. Even coal and other polluting fuels can be improved with better technology.

Much of the world is industrializing and this has lifting millions and billions of out poverty. Better still, this means stabilizing or even declining birth rates. People like to think of the world is getting overpopulated. But the pattern has been pretty consistent with much of the world getting down to a fertility rate around 2. If this is the case, that alone should massively reduce green house consumption in the next 100-200 years or so.

We have the technology and skill to avert much of the impacts of global warming. We can build levies and other flood protection measures. Maybe some regions are moved. Maybe we start different form of controlled farming. Global supply chains can move goods around the world pretty rapidly. If one region suffers a drought, things can be brought it from elsewhere.

And I am really skeptical if our leaders, even the ones championing global warming, actually see it as a great thread, instead of a means of political power.

Simple case. Obama spent his terms pushing through ObamaCare. Maybe worthy on its on right. But if we were truly facing a global disaster of global warming that threatened our existence, maybe... just maybe... he should have used his political capital and resources on that instead of healthcare.

And it's not just Obama. How many politicians or even scientists are willing to sacrifice for the anti-global warming effort?

Much like war, we get pretty cynical when they don't appear to make any sacrifices or when they don't demand sacrifices of everyone. Hey Bush, why don't you send your daughters to war in Iraq or why didn't you volunteer to go into actual war. Yet you seem pretty giddy about going to war in Iraq and other places.

The public's reaction is no different when facing politicians/scientists/academics who push for more power/taxes for 'global warming'. Are they willing to take a 30% paycut that would go to anti-global warming efforts? No... can't have that! Matter of fact, they really want to have increased funding!

Again, I'm not saying it is wrong. I am talking about perception here. Much like to win a war, maybe you need to pay your military contractors good money so they make really good weapons. But let's not pretend it doesn't create a high degree of cynicism about the true motivations.

In the end, maybe I'm just a bit positive, but I see the Earth warming a bit. We get through this. The technology is there. Our capabilities to fight the bad affects are there.

Maybe some parts of the world are hurt by it. But is global warming really the top concern for every part of the world. Turn on the news people. Thousands upon thousands are dying every day in a brutal civil war in Syria and the ME. Problems like this happen throughout the world.

Comment: Re:Here's a great idea... (Score 1) 481

by scamper_22 (#48991361) Attached to: DOT Warns of Dystopian Future For Transportation

Yeopi, this is the strange irony of our times.

People have inflated the value of healthcare and education over infrastructure.

This is not to say spending on healthcare or education is not good, just that it should come AFTER investments in infrastructure.

Roads, sewers, electricity... were the things governments were responsible before. Long before healthcare and education. Then these were added. Then people forgot about infrastructure.

You don't need large organization to get an education. All you really need is an adult and a room. Today, maybe even just a computer. For basic healthcare, all you need is a doctor to setup shop.

Heck, I grew up in an area without much healthcare aside from a doctor who practiced in his home.

But try getting by without roads, electricity, sewers...

Again, I'm not saying increasing healthcare and education is bad. Just saying it is a sad state where infrastructure if falling apart in many western nations and we spend so much on healthcare and education.

Comment: Re:Excellent idea (Score 1) 779

by scamper_22 (#48961449) Attached to: WA Bill Takes Aim at Boys' Dominance In Computer Classes

I would have much less resistance to this focus on equality of outcomes if people were not so keen to celebrate and profit from the benefits of the merit based system.

Tech is the prime example. Intense risk taking, insane work, insanely challenged environments, no security, crazy egos, ... kind of field.
Most progressives/leftists are willing to celebrate these companies and the 'new economy'. They celebrate in taxing these firms. They celebrate in the exports of these firms. They celebrate the greatness of their country via them.

Hey, you want to start talking about equal outcomes and leftist/progressive values, sure, I'm game. My family life is pretty important to me. Let me know when you give the 'boys club' mandatory 5 weeks vacation, fixed 40 hour weeks, job security, pensions, roles... every other bureaucratic tool.

But you know that won't happen. They profit from it too much.

It's like they want to leech of every success that is driven by the very culture they despise.

This is much more of a north american problem (canada included) as far as I can tell. In europe the private sector also has some of those benefits...

Comment: Re:Double Irish? TAX ALL FOREIGNERS!!! (Score 1) 825

by scamper_22 (#48959911) Attached to: Obama Proposes One-Time Tax On $2 Trillion US Companies Hold Overseas

The tax issue is pretty complex and the idea that companies are 'hiding' profits or something is much more complex.

1. Most countries have a sales tax which captures the economic activity in their own country. I'm in Canada. For every IPhone sold, the government is going to get something like 10-15% of the sales price. Heck for a lot of low-margin business, the government gets more in sales tax than the company is going to make in profit for that sale

2. Most countries have taxes on wages. Apple employs thousands of people on its own dime. The government is then going to tax those people at anywhere from 20-50% depending on the country. To top it off, people employed by these companies don't get government assistance.

3. Money leaving the company to actual people in the form of capital gains, dividends... is also taxed again.

There is actually very little in the way of 'hiding' going on.
At every turn, the government gets to put it's hand in the jar so to speak. I'm not saying it is a bad thing,

But why is the corporate rate attractive to tax? I'd guess it is because the corporation is this abstract entity.

But its very interesting to see how different countries approach these things. The US has a number of really high profile companies and views that as things to be taxed to enrich America.
In say China, companies are backed by the state because they generate jobs and exports.
In Canada, we lack many such high profile companies and want to attract these companies, so we actually start lowering tax rates, giving incentives for companies to locate here, but fall short of actually backing them.

It's just interesting to see how things are viewed as either things to be taxed or things to be encouraged. Even something as simply as airports. In Canada, the government views airports as just another thing, so they have hefty leases and other things that airports have to pay. This results in airports, like Toronto Pearson having high fees that many people even choose to drive to Buffalo, NY, to take flights from there.

In the US, airports are viewed more as infrastructure, not revenue generators or to be revenue neutral; heck they're often subsidized.

It really is a matter of perspective.
But like all things, increase costs too much on anything relative to other countries, and people will find a way to avoid it.
Increase sales tax too much, and people will drive to the next country over with lower sales tax.
Make life hard for corporations... don't worry... you're corporations aren't that special in the world. Apple is nice, but it's not like Samsung isn't producing many phones. ....

Comment: Re:18B on 75B (Score 1) 534

by scamper_22 (#48927805) Attached to: Apple Posts $18B Quarterly Profit, the Highest By Any Company, Ever

What's interesting is people have problem paying 10-15% sales tax on products. That means the government takes on more in sales tax than most companies make in profit on the actual product.

Of course this depends on where you live. In some parts sales tax might be 0% and 25% in others. It's just funny looking at it that way.

Comment: Re:So what was the result?? (Score 1) 497

by scamper_22 (#48877963) Attached to: Science By Democracy Doesn't Work

We're actually not that far off.

It's very interesting actually going through the questions from the most agreeable to the contentious. I like how you stated it, but I will expand.

Is climate change real and not a hoax? (few disagree)
Do humans contribute to it (probably 90/10)
Do humans contribute significantly to it (probably 50/50)
Should we take action to counter it (probably 40/60)
Should we take significant action to counter it? (???)
Should we impose a carbon tax? (???)
Should we prepare for raising water levels (???) ...

All these are separate questions. The problem is just how linked they are in politics.

For some, the link is direct.
Do you believe climate change is real? If yes.... then carbon tax!
Disagree with a carbon tax,then you must not believe in climate change.

On science, a lot of people don't actually disagree. it's actually become the linking of policies to scientific reality that infects and distorts science.

Comment: Re:Please develop for my dying platform! (Score 1) 307

by scamper_22 (#48877139) Attached to: Blackberry CEO: Net Neutrality Means Mandating Cross-Platform Apps

Just an FYI. I'm not advocating any particular position. I am simply stating the dynamics of the discussion.

Those on either side of what is a 'right,' speak in common ways.
Obviously you view negative rights as rights as the positive rights requires forced labor or ...

On the flip side, many would say negative rights mean many people are still 'forced' to work for a living and be a wage slave. So they have to work anyways and that is forced labor.

We should probably have different words for things like rights and freedoms, but in the end we don't and so that is where the interesting discussions is.

Even if you call net neutrality an entitlement, which I don't really care about, I really don't like dictionary battles, what changes about the discussion? John Chen's point is still relevant and all the issues it raises are still relevant.

This is the same with any argument over rights. Fight the word battle if you wish, but I'd much rather discuss what it actually means in practice.

Comment: Re:Please develop for my dying platform! (Score 1) 307

by scamper_22 (#48876191) Attached to: Blackberry CEO: Net Neutrality Means Mandating Cross-Platform Apps

He's not an idiot and it is pretty consistent with everyone's talk of rights as we normally do in out political discussions.

He is choosing to view net-neutrality as a positive right. You know, like how people view education and healthcare and housing. These things require other people to actively do things for you (time, resources, money).

The other net-neutrality is just a negative right, preventing the ISP from blocking, discriminating between content...Like freedom of speech, freedom of contract...

It's an interesting discussion that mirrors many political ones in its own way. Living constitution, access, rights, monopoly...

No, I don't think the CEO is actually arguing from such philosophical points. He is just trying to save his company... but it is interesting nonetheless.

Comment: Re:Yeah (Score 1) 562

by scamper_22 (#48845923) Attached to: Obama: Gov't Shouldn't Be Hampered By Encrypted Communications

I don't know. I understand the libertarian end of privacy. What I don't understand are people who generally love government then complaining about the government invading your privacy.

I'm as confused as anyone on what the better way is (libertarianism, socialism, capitalism...) I don't bloody well know.

It just seems strange to have this dichotomy.

It just seems a little strange.
Want the power to send me to jail for smoking weed? Sure go ahead. It is for the greater good.
Want the power to confiscate half my money and decide how to spend it? Sure go ahead. It is for the greater good.
Want the power to be in charge of my kids education and what they learn and the values they have for most of the day? Sure go ahead. It is for the greater good.
Want the power to be in charge of the healthcare system, spending huge portions of tax money and controlling/restricting labor? Sure go ahead. It is for the greater good.

Want the power to be in charge of a huge powerful military costing a huge portion of tax money and capable of killing millions upon millions and intervening in other countries? Sure go ahead. It is for the greater good.

Want the power to scan my emails in the hopes of catching terrorists? AAAAAAAAAAAAH, invasion of privacy, slippery slope, my rights are infringed....

Comment: Re:Families (Score 1) 218

This is true, but also misses a key point.
What you say would make perfect sense in some kind of libertarian paradise.

But let's consider something.
Most of the world has labor laws of some kind. But let's talk about the western world which has more labor laws. Everything for overtime pay, 40 hour work week, vacation, sick pay...

We have these to ensure a 'decent' life and the net result is we actually PREVENT people from competing in these areas. I'm not here to debate the effectiveness of these policies, but these laws exist now.

If the minimum wage is set to $10/hour, it prevents someone who wants a job from getting a job and willing to do it for $9/hour. Similarly, with free trade. We actually prevent Western workers from competing with lower wage workers in India/China.
Similarly, taking less vacation, working unpaid overtime, violating safety/environment...

In any case, within a western country, we setup a minimum standards of work and then let western workers compete without giving up those.

Now here's a thought, what if we brought it labor laws that made tech fields more appealing for those who wish to raise a family? And I'm not talking about freezing your eggs, but about the number of hours worked, stress, flex time, backups...

Then women would not need to choose between working at Google and taking care of their family?

I see nothing wrong with this as long as it is treated as the law for both men and women. Why should tech viewed as this super stressful work like a dog field? Why should it be less family friendly than being a teacher or any other 'female field'.

Now I know the reason... its business, speed to market...
But again, this is not any different from any of the other labor laws we've brought in. We bring them it to prevent people from competing on things we don't want (lower wages, more work hours...)

Sounds reasonable to me.

Comment: Re:That's a different skill-set (Score 1) 124

by scamper_22 (#48804483) Attached to: Do We Need Regular IT Security Fire Drills?

lol. Yeop.

I work at a large org that still has a history of what might have been professional IT.

Today, it results in project managers running around asking who can fill out this disaster recovery document? Anyone? Anyone?

And it gets filled in somehow but no one really knows anything.

Comment: Re:It depends on where you are in life (Score 1) 249

by scamper_22 (#48804309) Attached to: Education Debate: Which Is More Important - Grit, Or Intelligence?


Honestly, I reread my post and realize it can be taken in different ways than I meant.

Oddly, the point I was trying to make was that public school should be geared for the 90% or 65%. My point is that it is NOT done that way today.

But I'm looking at it at a neighborhood or local level. If I am at a school and 65% of the kids need grit/self-control/curiosity more than advanced academics, then the local school should deal with that reality. This is NOT done today as we have standard for states/provinces/or even nations.

I guess it depends on how your view homogenous education. If you view it from the nation/state/province level, then I guess what we have today makes sense.

I suppose as a teacher, I view it from the local school level, and I say we don't have it. In a school where 70% of the kids don't have the basics, but we are forced to teach the state/province curriculum and focus on academics, this is not serving the needs of the majority.

Comment: Re:It depends on where you are in life (Score 1) 249

by scamper_22 (#48795347) Attached to: Education Debate: Which Is More Important - Grit, Or Intelligence?

Im really not advocating much.

I'm aware of budget realities and that we cant have 1 teacher per student with a custom environment and learning style for each student.

What I'd say, is let us say a school where 65% of the kids lack grit/self-control/curiosity and are not benefitting from the academic curriculum. I would suggest that that specific school would be better off focussing on that.

I don't think it is asking too much, but it is when people think that the grade X curriculum should be the same for all kids and the same behavior and other standard should also be the same.

You know you've landed gear-up when it takes full power to taxi.