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Comment Re:File a Complaint (Score 1) 117

Unfortunately, that makes up 99.9% of the calls I get on my landline.

It may be time to re-evaluate whether you really need to be paying money for something that serves no purpose other than to act as means for beggars to arrest your attention at their leisure.

At the very least the cash flow should be in the opposite direction.

Comment Re:more guns needed (Score 3, Interesting) 1134

now the strategy is to rush the shooter, guns blazing if the person holding the gun shooting people will not comply.

having more armed law abiding citizens who are competent and trained on their firearms will lead to having a shooter confronted with deadly force sooner,

A practical question for your brother - If he's approaching a scene where there is a gun battle between the hypothetical competent law-abiding citizen and the active shooter bad guy, how does he know which is which?

Comment Build! And skip SLI. (Score 5, Informative) 325

As other posters have said - Build!

What I haven't seen noted yet - Skip SLI graphics cards. I went SLI on the gaming machine I built in 2005. What I found was that a top end graphics cards can play games at high settings for a while, and that the extra $450 would've been more effective if spent 50% of the way through the life of the PC (i.e. 2 years later) on another high end card of the next generation.

Comment Re:Can you liberals please wake the fuck up? (Score 1) 965

Far from it, but as you start to be less rigorous with your distinctions between the guilty and the innocent, pretty soon someone is going to find a reason to put you in front of the firing squad. And your pleas of innocence are indistinguishable from the millions that came before.

Comment Re:Can you liberals please wake the fuck up? (Score 1) 965

It is the moslems who are doing the fucking killings !!

I recognize that this is probably just a troll, but there is going to be some yahoo out there that actually believes this viewpoint. So here's a different viewpoint.

Speaking as an atheist, I am so far removed from all the religious groups that they are indistinguishably worshiping the same absurd stone-age fantasy. If we are going label and cast broad groups into the fire - including the vast majority who are productive members of our civilization - I propose we draw that line at "religious people". Some people argue there should be no Muslim places of worship X miles of ground zero because "we were attacked by Muslims". I argue we shouldn't squabble over minutia: "we were attacked by religious people" - shut down all the Churches and Synagogues while you're at it.

On the other hand, we could to be more specific and blame those individuals who are actually committing atrocities.

Comment Dear Mr. Baker (Score 4, Interesting) 111

Dear Mr. Baker,

I have an interest in this discussion as an engineer on a product that uses encryption. Here's a small sample of my companies customer list:

- Federal Bureau of Investigation
- US Department of Defense
- US Department of State
- US Department of Homeland Security
- US Air Force
- US Army
- Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division
- Northrop Grumman
- Lockheed Martin
- Raytheon

I am sure these organizations would love to hear why you need access to their data. I am sure the governments of China and Russia would never dream of hacking into your key repository, honest.

Disclaimer: opinions expressed here are mine and do not represent my employer.

Comment Re:Where's Trump? (Score 1) 686

I can't figure out whether Trump is too dumb to know he doesn't stand a chance in a general election or too smart for his own good and is intentionally sabotaging the GOP.

Here are my predictions:

In the latter case he's stirring up enough chaos that the Democrats slide in for an easy win and the Democratic primary becomes the de facto main event.

In the former case I think he's actually running for VP, whether he knows it or not:

He's pissed off enough of the GOP establishment, and proven beyond all doubt that he can't get the independent vote. Normally that would just mean he doesn't get the nomination but he has enough money to self-fund and trigger the spoiler effect on the GOP unless he's bluffing about running as independent. The GOP knows this, so until they learn he's actually bluffing their only option is to both keep him happy (by giving him something - hello money-in-politics!) and not giving him the POTUS nomination. That means Trump as VP and a young-ish, moderate candidate who is unlikely to die in office and leave him in the big chair. And thus we arrive at our standard "VP as insurance against terminating POTUS early" policy.

Comment I once got my eyes stuck cross-eyed. (Score 2) 46

going a little cross-eyed for a moment

Funny story involving close focusing and crossed eyes - So a couple years ago I watched about an hour or two worth of Family Guy from Netflix on my phone. I held the phone less than a foot away from my face while doing this, without any breaks. You know how they say don't cross your eyes for too long or they'll get stuck that way? Yeah... That actually happens. I had to walk around with one eye closed for the rest of the day (it didn't matter which one, I just couldn't do both or one would go all wonky). When I woke up the next morning I was fine again.

Comment Re:A comparison would be good (Score 4, Interesting) 319

They're desperate to keep the customers they already have.

Procedure for lowering ISP bill:

- Research introductory price from local competing ISPs with same speed (cable vs. DSL, etc...)
- Call current ISP, select billing from the phone menu.
- Tell Person1 you want them to match the other ISP's introductory price.
- Person1's job is to make you go away so they will put you on hold for 5 minutes. Don't go away.
- Person1 will return and tell you they can't match the price.
- Tell Person1 you'd like to cancel.
- Person1 will transfer you to Person2 in the billing department.
- Tell Person2 you've found a cheaper rate and would like to cancel.
- Person2 will keep you on hold for 10 minutes to see if you'll go away, occasionally returning with progressively lower rates but still above the competing rate. Don't go away. Don't accept anything above than the competing rate.
- Person2 will "find" a lower rate equal to the competing ISP's introductory rate for 1 year
- Wait 1 year, repeat.

I have done this 3 times with a success rate of 100% on RoadRunner. Average annual savings = $180.

The most recent time I was already on an introductory rate ($45/mo for 30 megabit) but found an even lower intro ($34/mo for same) rate at the competing ISP. Person1 had the audacity to say "I think you're already getting a pretty good rate". I was tempted to not even give them the opportunity to keep my subscription at that point.

Comment Re:Amazon... (Score 1) 206

I disagree. Amazon's stock price is much too high right now, being driven so by extreme speculation. It's current selling for more than 21 times book value. It's a very poor investment over the long term - the next time the market goes bear the price will drop like a brick unless by some miracle they have increased their assets by about 20 times and profitability by about 1000 times (read: Good Luck With That). Investing in it in the short term is a game of musical chairs - somebody is going to be stuck owning it when the price tanks. Cashing out right before that point requires recognizing that the price is about to tank (before everyone else, who are all trying to do the same thing). Even if you trade as fast as a computer you're faced with a chicken-and-egg problem.

Compare that to oil companies which can be bought at bargain prices right now - if you can pick which ones are financially strong enough to ride out the current drop in oil prices (which will go away when ISIS does). For example with this one you're buying nearly $3 worth of assets and $0.30 in annual earnings for every $1 in stock price. (Before anyone interprets that as investment advice, I'm not convinced this example is strong enough to ride out the price drop.)

Recommended reading (ironically an Amazon link)

Comment Re:Salary vs. cost of living? (Score 1) 264

rent in the bay are is high, but 2500 get's you a 3-4 bed house in the east bay

You're missing the big picture of real estate: Equity.

When you pay into a mortgage you can sell the house or borrow against the equity. When you pay rent, you build someone else's equity for them. This person already has enough wealth to buy to pay the insane prices of houses in Silicon Valley. So the rich person is getting richer, and the poor person is going nowhere.

but you don't have many other expenses, silicon valley companies feed you, offer transportation, etc etc.

That was tried before in the coal mining towns of West Virginia. It doesn't turn out so well for the workers. See these. You're just skipping the pointless pieces of paper and instead presenting a company ID.

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