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Comment: Re:Do car HUDS always stay in focus? (Score 1) 195 195

On the two cars I have had with HUD's, the focus is set to infinity. Personally I like HUD, as I can glance briefly to the bottom of the windshield and without needing to refocus my eyes, check speed or tach. Why anybody would complain about HUD is a mystery to me. You can always turn it off if you do not like it. Again in my case, the HUD was configurable to show as little as just speed or as much as tach/speed/one gauge setting/nav info.

Comment: Re:Shouldn't this be obvious? (Score 3, Interesting) 150 150

Spot on. A friend teaches in a tough area. The only time the parents interact is when little johnny or susie get anything less than a B. He has a notebook he carries at all times. When the parent calls/shows up, he rattles off the child did not submit a single piece of homework, or could not be bothered to show up, etc. I remember one story where the parent is there with child, and the parent says to the child, "I am trying to be angry with your teacher, but your making it difficult". He can't fail them, because if he did, he'd get fired. The system is so broken at this point it infuriates me. We spend on average 9 thousand dollars per student. 9 THOUSAND dollars. For a class of 30 that is over a quarter of a million bucks. For kids that cannot tie their shoes. The school he teaches at has a squadron of guards who really cannot do much because if they do, they get fired. Case in point, a pair of girls are having a knife fight. Two guards restrain the girls and one gets cut in the process. Net result, the girls are suspended for 2 days. For aggravated assault, a two day suspension. Really, I know I am old but in my day, they'd be gone to juve for the rest of the year. Other fun facts are he is not allowed to give homework for weekends or especially holidays, would not want to spoil the child's weekend/holiday. He cannot send problem students to the vice principle, he gets reprimanded. The school has day care for all the single mothers.

Comment: Re:Countries can demand fair taxes (Score 1) 312 312

I agree, the problem is how to fairly tax. No matter how the law is written, smart accountants will figure a way around the spirit of the law. Real innovation in the US is rewarded less in the US than innovative ways to game tax law. Maybe change it so patent protection in the US is only provided if the patent is owned by a US corp or US subsidiary, paying US tax on that patent's income? That way diverting fake IP expense to another country denies you the legal protection you expect from the US.

Comment: Re:Who pays for TSB investigation (Score 1) 165 165

All I can say is I have some fairly rich friends by my definition (MM's) and it is offensive some of the deductions they get. I would begin by removing ALL deductions and starting from scratch. I'd probably only put back in the classic schedule A deductions(mortgage, charity, health). For individuals, that is it. I would also eliminate trusts, which are probably the most valuable tax vehicle for the super wealthy. And no this is not about the NTSB being taxpayer funded, of course it should be. This is about why is the NTSB doing the R&D for VG. After the thing has flown a few successful simulated full on test flights, IE not development flights, I'd be ok with it. This thing is not even to alpha yet.

Comment: Re:Who pays for TSB investigation (Score 2) 165 165

Only someone making 1M++ is going to pop for a 250K fun ride. I certainly agree that 100-750k/yr pays alot of tax, I don't consider that group rich however. They are upper middle class and I agree bear the brunt of taxes. Its the .1or even .01% that branson is attracting, and they should be bearing the cost here. But these people have very good accountants who know how to avoid tax and have very good connections to get the most out of the system. Nope, I stand by my original argument, the US taxpayer is getting the shaft on this one and once again the tax system is shifting wealth to the super rich. As a friend of mine likes to say, soon mexico will be as corrupt as the US.

Comment: Who pays for TSB investigation (Score 1, Insightful) 165 165

While I am all for commercial space programs, I am a bit confused why NTSB is involved at this point. This was a test flight for what will never really be commercial travel for the masses. It seems to me, VG is getting alot of free help from me the taxpayer to figure out what went wrong. I will never have a 1/4 of mil for a fun 5 minute ride, so why am I paying to help it along. Or is this another case of the middle class screw? We pay for rich people's hobbies again.

Comment: Re:People (Score 2) 481 481

You are restricting your viewpoint to limited countries. Certain asian countries still eat dogs and even transport it like we would livestock. If I remember right Thailand exports live dogs to Vietnam for consumption. In the US, most smart animal shelters carefully review who is adopting to make sure the adopter is not using the shelter as a meat supplier. I happen to be a dog lover and find it offensive, but I understand it is cultural. Much like I find Japan's slaughtering of dolphin to be cruel, but I don't care if people kill sharks. What we eat is based on local cultural norms. Think about how India feels about us eating cows for example.

Comment: Re:Net metering (Score 1) 517 517

Nope, in austin it is fairly easy to end up paying for energy you produce. When monthly usage exceeds 1000kwh, you pay 12.9c/kwh but you only received 10.7c/kwh for the energy produced by your panels. You stilll pay such wonderful extra tariffs like community benefit charges on total kwh used as well making the 12.9c go even higher. At the 500-1000 usage level it is more equal with the utility charging 11.7c/kwh. So the computation is not total usage - solar generation = charged usage. It is total usage x normal tariff - solar generation x solar rate = your bill. I was rather pissed when they changed to the new model. Previously it was net metered. And to add to the insult, they reserve the right to change the solar rate paid to you at whim. Previously they paid 12.7c/kwh which worked out to about even after you factor in all the other taxes etc they charge. I have to say, when I moved here, I put austin energy at the top of the heap for utilities and thought city run power was a good idea. After the baffoons wasted 60 mil on the new billing system that does not work, restructured the solar rates, and hoover cash from the utility to pay city shortfalls, I'd rank them as the absolute worst utility in history.

Comment: Re:Sure, but... (Score 1) 502 502

They effectively already do this in austin. The latest solar rate structure pays 10.5c/kwh but they charge 12.5c/kwh for users using over 1000kwh/mo. So even when I don't use the network I pay 2.5c/kwh for solar power I generate. Unfortunately they do not meter push/pull to/from network, they charge based on total solar generation and total usage. And of course they reserve the right to adjust how much they pay me at will. Last year solar power pay'ed 12.5c so it was a wash.

Comment: Re:Joe (Score 1) 359 359

Or a reason to use a modified version of the old NED editor from rand. My homebrew version is 176K, and is more efficient at large files than vi. I built it after needing it for linux and giving up trying to update the original code about 5 years ago. Up until then I used the Rand code. The other handy thing about having your own editor is you can make it work exactly like you want. And since I've used it since college, it is like the back of my hand. I use it for everything from scripts to million line C projects.

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