The neighbor to the north (WA) has a sales tax of almost 10%, but they are one of a handful of states that do NOT have a state income tax. That's why WA and OR are roughly comparable. One has sales tax, one has income tax. If OR added a sales tax, the financial burden on its citizens would be as oppressive as neighboring socialist hellhole to the south, CA. OR simply does not have the population density nor the amount of industry that would enable CA-levels of taxpayer-rape, and they certainly don't have the infrastructure to justify it. (most of OR is uninhabited desert and mountain ranges. Nearly everyone lives along the coast, the Columbia river, or the I-5 corridor)
The proposed vehicle usage increase is probably not about a lack of existing revenue to fix roads anyway. I'm guessing that they just want more money to spend on the kind of hippie, nanny-state bullshit they are famous for.
This has precisely jack squat to do with "pay-by-phone". The article is about "order-by-phone". In the case of the author, he has a credit card on file with a fast food burger joint staffed with high school drop-outs (what could possibly go wrong) and the order is placed, charged, and processed thru the restaurant's internet-facing computer system. It's no different that buying something from Amazon except that you have to go get the product yourself instead of having it delivered by UPS
How the fuck is it "much better"? Try copying 100,000 files over a LAN from an XP box to a Win8 drive. The OS will shit itself and lock up entirely. Not even a blue screen, completely unresponsive DOA requiring pulling the plug. How about the "full line select" bullshit in file manager windows that makes it a huge pain in the ass to select files with a mouse?
All the review talks about is a bunch of stupid top-layer eye-candy bullshit that NO ONE CARES ABOUT. The goddamned OS should not be an "experience". That's what programs are for. The OS should shut the fuck up, do exactly what I tell it to do WHEN I tell it to do it, and generally stay the hell out of my way and out of my sight. Vista, 7, and 8 are abject failures that can't even correctly perform the minimal basic I/O tasks that are the exact reason we even HAVE operating systems rather than writing directly to the hardware.
Microsoft, you absolutely DON'T GET IT! You keep trying to pander to the idiot teenager mobile device crowd and people too stupid to even OWN a powerful computing device and you are pissing in the faces of everyone who actually uses your shitty OS to do REAL WORK and put food on their tables (mainly because the applications they use won't run on a REAL OS). Quit fucking around and DO YOUR GODDAMN JOBS OVER THERE. Fire the stupid assholes responsible for the abomination that is Win8 and put out an OS that at least does the bare minimum. Window dressing and eye candy is for children. Try aiming at the grownup market for a change!
1) - Masking the password on the screen is UTTERLY USELESS unless you also have a towel or something draped over the keyboard. It's far easier for a touch-typist to figure out what someone is typing by looking at the keyboard (even from across the room) than it is to make out tiny letters on a typical crappy DC monitor from off-angle or at a distance
2) - If your monitor is facing in ANY direction but at a blank wall or the adjacent row of racks, you're doing it wrong. Always position yourself with your back to the wall, no matter where you are. Situational awareness is always important for one reason or another and it's much more difficult if you don't have control of your 6 o'clock.
They aren't going to "crush" Comcast and Frontier. My FIOS fiber is already capable of 1 gb, but the interface on the side of the house says it's only good for about 250 mbps. They'd just need to change that and add some new stuff at the head end. I'm currently paying for 30/30, but I can see them offering 100 for the same price if Google starts sniffing around. Comcast is already offering 100 mb in some markets and they can probably steal more bandwidth from their cable TV spectrum to ramp up to a gig if it really becomes necessary. Coax has a lot of room in it as long as it's in good physical shape.
Remember that "Seattle" (including the suburbs) is about 100 miles long and 50 miles wide. Comcast covers nearly all of that. It took Verizon (who recently sold their local plant to Frontier) about 10 years to connect a few small areas in the 'burbs. It would be decades before Google could cover the whole thing. Comcast only has to beef up the areas that Google entered and that probably wouldn't include the FIOS areas. Remember that even though per capital income is pretty high here, the customer density is pretty low compared to the major metropolitan areas like NYC, LAX, etc. I think the whole region still only has about 2 million people. Google might do the East side just to piss off Microsoft though