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Comment: The question is complicated (Score 1) 34

by 93 Escort Wagon (#48217361) Attached to: Preferred smartphone screen size?

At least for me it is.

I was perfectly happy with the old iPhone 3GS screen size (3.5"), for a phone - you can easily reach everything with your thumb, and texting is a breeze. Then, for a tablet, I think the 8" is just about perfect... but that means I have two devices. Most of the time that's not a problem, but an iPad Mini can only fit in some of my cargo pants pockets and not others.

So now I'm wondering - do I want to go to a ginormous phone, and just forgo the tablet altogether? When I've played with friends' big Android phones, they seem too big for a phone while being smaller than optimal for things like web browsing. BUT carrying only one "good enough" device has a definite appeal. So the decision is, is it enough of an advantage for me to willingly compromise on the size equation at both ends of the spectrum?

So it's a complicated question - and a potentially expensive experiment.

Comment: Re:Guy saves you from becoming Illinois (Score 1) 19

by mcgrew (#48204139) Attached to: The Kevlar Kandidate Gets Some Help

And all the unions can do is stab him

Of course they are. What else can you do when someone is trying to murder you?

As far as Illinois' fiscal problems, they started under Thompson (R), who wanted to both cut taxes and increase spending (sound familiar?). Edgar (R) followed his footsteps, as did Ryan (R). The screaming didn't start until Blago (D) and it's still a terrible problem, but is slowly improving.

Ryan and Blago both went to prison for bribery. Thompson (R) unsuccessfully defended Blago in his bribery trial (note that even Johnny Cochran and F. Lee Baily together wouldn't have been able to keep him out of the slammer).

The current Republican candidate, who "earns" a thousand times the median income, wants to tax my pensions, my social security, haircuts, food, medicine, while slashing both his own taxes and school funding.

No way in hell could I vote for that guy.

Comment: Re:Give it another decade - the problem will solve (Score 1) 129

by 93 Escort Wagon (#48199701) Attached to: The Future of Stamps

Just because you don't send physical objects anymore does not mean everyone else does not.

That's a straw man. I send physical objects several times a year. When I do, I use UPS or FedEx because the Postal Service sucks at it. My expectation that the USPS will die does not mean package delivery has to die with it.

USPS's bread and butter has historically always been letters and bills. Nowadays that is rapidly drying up, so their bread and butter has become delivering advertisements to our houses. We don't really need to maintain a government funded agency for advertisement delivery.

Comment: Give it another decade - the problem will solve it (Score 0) 129

by 93 Escort Wagon (#48199393) Attached to: The Future of Stamps

I'm not sure why we should invest much time moving "stamps" into the digital age. Does anyone expect the Post Office to even exist, ten years from now?

No one sends physical letters anymore. Almost all of my bills can come electronically, directly to my bank. Doctors offices and medical clinics seem to be one of the few holdouts... and even they seem to be moving online now.

User Journal

Journal: Random Scribblings 1

Journal by mcgrew

While I'm waiting for the corrected copy of Mars, Ho! to show up I've been working on another, Random Scribblings. It's a compilation of garbage I've littered the internet with for almost twenty years.

Comment: Tit for tat (Score 3, Insightful) 328

I imagine Beats/Apple isn't too happy with Bose's shenanigans regarding telling NFL players they can't wear their Beats headphones until 90 minutes after the end of the game.

Of course the players do it anyway, and Beats apparently pays the fines for them... but still.

Incidentally, the NFL isn't doing very well with regards to their endorsement deals - first Microsoft, and now Bose.

Comment: Ebola-fighting robots (Score 1) 87

by 93 Escort Wagon (#48177023) Attached to: Researchers Scrambling To Build Ebola-Fighting Robots

U.S. robotics researchers from around the country are collaborating on a project to build autonomous vehicles that could deliver food and medicine, and telepresence robots that could safely decontaminate equipment and help bury the victims of Ebola

I'm glad to hear the folks at U.S. Robotics have found something useful to work on, given how the dial-up modem business has tanked.

Comment: Re:Bad idea (Score 4, Insightful) 250

by 93 Escort Wagon (#48176873) Attached to: Apple's Next Hit Could Be a Microsoft Surface Pro Clone

Sleeve cases for laptops are nothing new - I had one for my second-generation MacBook Air.

I know there really are people like you who like the Surface - I work with a Windows admin that loves his. But having used the latest Pro 3 with the "good" type cover... I don't get the love. Typing is awful, the trackpad is awful, and having to take one of your hands off that keyboard to touch the screen is slow as hell. I watch my coworker use his, and every time he reaches for the screen it's like whatever he's doing shifts to slow motion. it sure looks like a bad concept from top to bottom.

Comment: Re:moof (Score 1) 11

by mcgrew (#48175599) Attached to: America's two-tiered justice as seen from north of the border

I get my view of how the lower class is treated by the cops, from watching the TV show "Cops".

Understandable, then why you hold your views of the poor.

Generally the poor are poor because they make bad choices.

Some people, true, but not generally. If you're raised by poor parents, you're up against a very big wall. It's hard for them to buy school supplies, and if you're raised by a single parent it's harder for them to help you because they're probably working two jobs. Having a single parent is the result of a poor choice, but it wasn't your poor choice.

And a poor kid can forget ever attending college.

People who have bills to pay and have to go to work in the morning don't have time to be out causing trouble.

Most of the US's poor work, and are not criminals. But the cops still treat them as criminals; hell, society itself does.

Those folks working at McDonald's, WalMart, the corner convenience store are all on food stamps. That friendly face you see at the checkout counter is the face of poverty, not the idiots you see while watching "Cops" (that show is government propaganda, BTW).

So we are a classless society, in that you're not stuck in one socioeconomic class no matter how hard you work.

Rags to riches is extremely rare and takes a hell of a lot more than hard work. My late uncle was one of the exceptions. Creativity and hand-eye coordination runs in the family, and a stroke of bad luck was the best thing that happened to Dan.

He was injured in WWII in the navy, and became friends with a fellow patient in the hospital who had lost a leg in the war. The army gave him a prosthetic, and Dan saw it and said "I can make a better leg than that" when his friend showed him the new leg, and he did. They went into the prosthetics business, and all it took to sell one was for Dan's partner to talk to a recent amputee, who would invariably say "What could YOU possibly know about it?" All he had to do was pull up his pants leg and it was an instant sale, because you would never know that he was missing a limb.

But there were so many lucky breaks, including genetics, that his rags to riches story (both sets of my grandparents were poor all their lives) would not have happened had a single thing, especially meeting his future partner, who was a born salesman; that's something that doesn't run in the family. We couldn't sell a ten cent hamburger to a starving man.

The fact is, if you're born poor you're almost certain to die poor, and if you're born rich you're almost certain to die rich. If you're born middle class there's no telling; you could die rich, middle class, or poor.

If this society is as classless as you say, then why did no one spend a single day in jail over the banking crimes that brought down the economy? Why did no one from Sony go to prison over XCP? Why was OJ Simpson "not guilty"? Do you think a poor black man would have been treated the same? Hell, a poor white man would have gone to prison under those circumstances.

In a consumer society there are inevitably two kinds of slaves: the prisoners of addiction and the prisoners of envy.