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Comment: Privacy and Safety (Score 0) 73

by stu72 (#49434665) Attached to: Phone App That Watches Your Driving Habits Leads To Privacy Concerns

I'm sure /. is all familiar with, âoeThey that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.â âThose Who Sacrifice Liberty For Security Deserve Neither.â and it's tempting to apply it here.

However I would disagree. The act of operating a 2 ton vehicle at fatal velocities is not unlike the act of pointing a loaded gun at people in public, but promising not to shoot anyone. Now imagine that hundreds of millions of people do this, and hundreds of thousands screw up every year and injure or kill someone, generating billions upon billions in insurance claims.

If we treated cars like guns, keeping them securely locked in the garage at all times except a life or death emergency, and on every usage got law enforcement involved to investigate, then you could argue that you have a right to privacy as a car owner, just as a gun owner might. But once you endanger the public, whether by waving your gun around, or waving your car around, I would argue you give up that right.

If you don't want anyone to care what you do with your vehicle, just choose a less dangerous vehicle. Like your feet, or a bike. Then no one will much care what you do, where you go, or how you operate it.

Comment: Re:Large homes (Score 1) 220

by stu72 (#47664319) Attached to: Samsung Announces Galaxy Alpha Featuring Metal Frame and Rounded Corners

Of course this is true.

However there is significant strain of, "more is better" in much of North America, and it leads people to mistake wants with needs. People have lived perfectly happy lives and raised great kids in far less space than many suburban North Americans believe is a bare minimum. It doesn't mean you have to accept this for yourself, just be aware that when your local politician/developer/journalist starts talking about "needs" they might really be talking about "wants"

Comment: Words != Actions (Score 1) 544

by stu72 (#47553411) Attached to: Lots Of People Really Want Slideout-Keyboard Phones: Where Are They?

Lots of people say.... ... They want to use less energy , but drive big SUV's ... They want to eat healthy, but stock up on sugary 'health' beverages

Just because your poll suggests a preference, does not necessarily mean actions will follow.

Product design and marketing has to focus on likely actions, not verbal intentions.

Comment: Re:What's so Hard to Understand? (Score 3, Informative) 192

by stu72 (#47333581) Attached to: An Army Medal For Coding In Perl

It's hard to understand because..

a) most people probably have little understanding of military awards outside of hollywood and might be forgiven for thinking they are all given for combat

b) most managers, whether in the military or not, seem woefully clueless about the impact of cumbersome poorly designed systems and the payback on well designed ones (or well designed hacks running on top of the poor system) So that someone even noticed he was more productive, didn't freak out because he did something different, didn't freak out because the different thing involved "programming" *AND* gave him a medal... seems pretty remarkable.

Comment: Carrier Subsidy (Score 1) 291

by stu72 (#38573420) Attached to: Chile Forbids Carriers From Selling Network-Locked Phones

I agree with this 100% but I hope everyone realizes that with no ability to force customers to stick around, there will be a dramatically reduced incentive for carriers to offer subsidies on fancy phones. I think this is fine but I wonder if there will be an uproar when $600 iPhones cost $600 instead of $200 + contract and/or lock.

Comment: Re:what progress? (Score 1) 769

by stu72 (#35473836) Attached to: Japan Battles Partial Nuclear Meltdown

Boric acid is to stop the reaction, there is no indication the nuclear reaction is still ongoing. The issue is residual decay heat can be many megawatts and needs to be dissipated. If they can't dissipate it, mother nature will take of that but the results will not be pretty (molten core, possibly breaching reactor vessel, etc etc)

+ - Conversion Error costs AXA $242 Million-> 1

Submitted by stu72
stu72 (96650) writes "TFA only explains, "an error" discovered by a junior programmer and subsequently covered up by senior management. However the SEC report is here: and it gives some more details:

"Some Risk Model components sent information to the Optimizer in decimals while other components reported information in percentages; therefore the Optimizer had to convert the decimal information to percentages in order to effectively consider all the information on an equal footing. Because proper scaling did not occur, the Optimizer did not give the intended weight to common factor risks.""

Link to Original Source

Comment: Insanity (Score 1) 112

by stu72 (#34749896) Attached to: French Use Space Tech To Find Parking Spots

Parking spots in most cities in the world are scarce because they are priced well below what they are worth. By letting demand set the price (i.e. raise it dramatically) you deal with several problems all in one fell swoop:
- parking unavailability
- people polluting the air and causing congestion endlessly circling for a cheap/free spot
- enforcement of time limits currently in place for free spots
- using space age technology to detect free spaces

The tech sounds neat but it's just over-complicating an already over-complicated situation.

Comment: Re:Oh happy day (Score 1) 449

by stu72 (#34483968) Attached to: PC Era Forecasted To End In 18 Months

Telco's have no interest in selling new hardware except as a means to attract new subscribers. Most smartphones sold in North America are heavily subsidized by the carrier, meaning they *lose* money every time they "sell" a new phone. The only people in North American telcos who will be upset at the loss of the upgrade imperative will be their marketing department - they'll lose their easiest grab on people's attention.

"A car is just a big purse on wheels." -- Johanna Reynolds