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Comment Absolutely (Score 2) 435

Go completely dark.

Hire attorneys to handle ALL your affairs. Carry only credit cards. Stay out of the news.

But you can also have fun anonymously...

Make an arrangements with a car deal to give away cars to people you think deserve it as you encounter them.
Pay the check for an entire restaurant full of people when you leave.
Watch for local foreclosures and intercede on the behalf of those you think are getting a raw deal.
Fund a promising local business for two years.

Of course it goes without saying that you pay off the mortgages of all your relatives and set up college savings accounts for all of your children, nieces, nephews and cousins.

Comment Re:Trading one set of problems for another (Score 1) 435

Actually, a million cash would be about enough to fund a $60k a year income assuming you can get a good rate of return (6%...crazy these days). And you'd have to play the stock market. Banks aren't paying squat, even for a million bucks.

A million isn't as much as you think when it comes to retirement savings.

Comment Re:Not all that uncommon in reality (Score 1) 111

Someday Steam will go away, and then all those discs which are now coasters which install Steam and maybe some game resources will just be coasters.

Yes, and someday the universe will end in heat death and everything that ever existed will be useless. That doesn't mean we shouldn't enjoy it up until that point.

The point wasn't "don't use Steam", the point was "if you have decent internet access, the disc is a complete waste of time." It's worth noting however that if you don't have a halfway decent connection, it may still be a complete waste of time.

Comment Re:Fat Cats in the Countryside (Score 1) 186

Why? Why is it "even greater?" You really think getting people living in the middle of nowhere is one of the best places the government can spend our money? I don't.

Do you really want there to only be one lifestyle available in the country? Don't you want there to be infrastructure available in remote regions of the nation so that you can enjoy it if you should have to go there? By the way, I'm literally walking distance from actual civilization, there's just artificial monopoly boundaries in the way of someone other than AT&T bringing fiber into my county, and thus some competition. It's a short hop.

Because despite the views of the slashdot demographic, not having high speed internet is not the end of the world.

It's part of modern society... in developed nations, anyhow.

I think transportation infrastructure should be paid for ONLY through gasoline taxes, which means those big trucks doing the most damage are paying the most for the use of the roads.

If you think that would make the trucks pay for their fair share of the damage, thinking is precisely what you aren't doing. They only consume five to ten times as much fuel as cars, but they do far more than five to ten times as much of the road damage. Basing all road maintenance on gas taxes would place the most unfair burden squarely on the people who damage the roads the least — motorcyclists. That would be followed up in unfairness by people who drive lightweight cars without low rolling resistance tires, who also do basically no road damage whatsoever in the course of normal road use.

And make no mistake - I probably drive a lot more than you (I'm at 200k with my 10 year old car, the average is supposedly around 12k/year, not 20k).

Unless it's a serious land yacht with cookie-cutter tires, you'd be getting absolutely robbed if all the road maintenance came from fuel taxes.

The Almighty Buck

Ask Slashdot: What Would You Do If You Were Suddenly Wealthy? 435

An anonymous reader writes: There are a few articles floating around today about comments from Markus Persson, aka "Notch," the creator of Minecraft. He sold his game studio to Microsoft last year for $2.5 billion, but he seems to be having a hard time adjusting to his newfound fame and wealth. He wrote, "The problem with getting everything is you run out of reasons to keep trying, and human interaction becomes impossible due to imbalance. ... Found a great girl, but she's afraid of me and my life style and went with a normal person instead. I would Musk and try to save the world, but that just exposes me to the same type of a$#@%&*s that made me sell minecraft again." While he later suggests he was just having a bad day, he does seem to be dealing with some isolation issues. Granted, it can be hard to feel sorry for a billionaire, but I've wondered at times how I'd handle sudden wealth like that, and I long ago decided it would make the human relationships I'm accustomed to rather difficult. So, how would you deal with Notch's problem? It seems like one the tech industry should at least be aware of, given the focus on startup culture.

Comment Re:Not all that uncommon in reality (Score 1) 111

I've still never played Half-Life 2.

I was on a ~26.4 dialup connection that was flaky. My disc actually did contain game content, so once I was able to get Steam installed, I could play the game. I actually highly recommend it, especially if you've already paid for it. It is a gem among single-player FPSes. But my problem was that the initial Steam install required (or requires?) a Steam update as part of the installation process, and the download for this update did (does?) not resume when it fails. This was enough to keep me from being able to install the game for several days, until I finally got a long enough uninterrupted download to get Steam installed. The actual game updates download relatively gracefully, in that they can be paused and resumed at will. There is even a scheduler, which works sometimes.

I have got a whole wad of Steam games via Humble Bundles, and a couple of Steam games via deliberate purchases — games I expect to be bored with after playing through them once, or which I bought only to get access to their data files for use with other game engines. Some of these games have no DRM, so the fact that they were delivered via Steam is of no consequence. It's also a fine delivery platform for free-to-pay games, since they're momentary things and you have to download all the content for them anyhow. Otherwise, I prefer to avoid the Steam logo.

This is a frustrating time to be a gamer, unless you're into retrogaming. Anyone still playing Mech IV? I miss that game.

Google

Google Facing Fine of Up To $1.4 Billion In India Over Rigged Search Results 109

An anonymous reader writes: The Competition Commission of India has opened an investigation into Google to decide whether the company unfairly prioritized search results to its own services. Google could face a fine of up to $1.4 billion — 10% of its net income in 2014. A number of other internet companies, including Facebook and FlipKart, responded to queries from the CCI by confirming that Google does this. "The CCI's report accuses Google of displaying its own content and services more prominently in search results than other sources that have higher hit rates. It also states that sponsored links shown in search results are dependent on the amount of advertising funds Google receives from its clients. Ecommerce portal Flipkart noted that it found search results to have a direct correlation with the amount of money it spent on advertising with Google." The company has faced similar antitrust concerns in the EU and the U.S

Submission + - Red Fireworks Go Green->

An anonymous reader writes: Makers of fireworks and flares have long believed that the beautiful red color in their explosions could be attained only with chlorine-based compounds. But after these ingredients combust, they can transform into cancer-causing chemicals that then fall to the ground. New chlorine-free pyrotechnics could pave the way for a generation of red fireworks and flares that are better for the environment and for people’s health.

Chemists formulated the new explosive by replacing polyvinyl chloride on the old ingredient list with either hexamine, a preservative in citrus washing solutions, or 5-amino-1H-tetrazole, an air-bag propellant.

Link to Original Source

Comment Re:$250 to download one game (Score 1) 111

Did single-player or shared-screen games for Xbox 360 bug you to create an Xbox LIVE Silver account, connect to the Internet, and install multiple-hundred-megabyte patches before they would start playing in the first place?

Literally no, effectively yes. If you want them to work right.

Power

Plunging Battery Prices Expected To Spur Renewable Energy Adoption 83

Lucas123 writes: Lithium-ion (Li-on) and flow battery prices are expected to drop by as much as 60% by 2020, making them far more affordable for storing power from distributed renewable energy systems, such as wind and solar, according to a recent report by Australia's Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA). The 130-page report (PDF) shows that Li-on batteries will drop from $550 per kilowatt hour (kWh) in 2014 to $200 per kWh by 2020; and flow battery prices will drop from $680 per kWh to $350 per kWh during the same time. Flow batteries and Li-ion batteries work well with intermittent energy sources such as solar panels and wind turbines because of their ability to be idle for long periods without losing a charge. Both battery technologies offer unique advantages in that they can easily be scaled to suit many applications and have high cycle efficiency, the ARENA report noted. Li-ion batteries more easily suit consumer market. Flow batteries, which are less adaptable for consumer use because they're typically too large, scale more easily because all that's needed to grow storage capacity is more electrolyte liquid; the hardware remains the same.

Comment Re:$250 to download one game (Score 1) 111

Either that or this is another advantage of consoles over PCs.

Well, the last console I used was an Xbox 360, and I haven't turned it on in quite some time after getting turned off by titanfall (in fact I packed it into a crate and forgot about it, the whole system I mean, I guess I should sell it while it's still worth something since I don't want to cart it around until it becomes an antique) but even on that platform I had multiple-hundred-megabyte patches to deal with.

Comment Re:launchd not as bad as systemd (Score 1) 147

Okay, show me your video. I don't doubt it's fast, but there's no way it's faster than the Happy Mac icon.

I dunno, I've had some inexplicable waits for that icon to show up. It just doesn't show up as quickly as you suggest every time. And I've used a very broad range of Macs, they were just sneaking into the schools while I was being forced to be in them, but I also come from Santa Cruz which is a very nerdy college town, and also full of liberal arts and graphic arts and whatnot and thus full of macs.

The only Amiga I have handy to make a RRD on is an A1200. It's kind of too new, it might invalidate the point. But if you insist, I'll see if it still powers up. I have a DV Bridge so I can get video into my PC, in theory. Hmm, and a camcorder with the same functionality, now I think of it.

Comment Re:People limited to 10 GB/mo (Score 3, Insightful) 111

People with a 10 GB/mo plan on cellular, satellite, or Iowa DSL could start a download now and not finish the 50 GB of a full 2-layer BD-ROM before the end of the year.

Well, there are plans which would provide more bandwidth. The reality though is that more and more games have not just massive installs but also massive patchsets, so if you don't have high-speed internet with reasonable caps then modern gaming is not for you. That sucks, it sucks a lot, but it's how it is, and the person without decent internet access should take up retrogaming yesterday. I only have 6 Mbps myself, though with no cap, and that puts a serious crimp in my gaming activities. I cannot download a game and game online at the same time, for example. I can only game while my lady watches Netflix in the mornings; in the evenings, my ratty-ass WISP goes all to hell due to oversubscription and/or crap hardware they claimed they were going to replace a long time ago, shock amazement.

TL;DR: AAA games are not for people with crap internet

Submission + - Google Facing Fine of Up To $1.4 Billion In India Over Rigged Search Results->

An anonymous reader writes: The Competition Commission of India has opened an investigation into Google to decide whether the company unfairly prioritized search results to its own services. Google could face a fine of up to $1.4 billion — 10% of its net income in 2014. A number of other internet companies including Facebook and FlipKart responded to queries from the CCI confirming their suspicion that Google does this. "The CCI’s report accuses Google of displaying its own content and services more prominently in search results than other sources that have higher hit rates. It also states that sponsored links shown in search results are dependent on the amount of advertising funds Google receives from its clients. Ecommerce portal Flipkart noted that it found search results to have a direct correlation with the amount of money it spent on advertising with Google." The company has faced similar antitrust concerns in the EU and the U.S
Link to Original Source
The Almighty Buck

Where the Tech Industry's Political Donations Are Going 95

An anonymous reader writes: Early estimates suggest the 2016 U.S. presidential election will result in $5-10 billion in spending by candidates and organizations — much more than ever before. To support this, they need lots of contributions, and the tech industry is becoming a significant player. (Not as much as the financial industry, of course, but tech's influence is growing.) Re/Code breaks down which candidates are getting the most money from the tech sector so far. Right now, Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) has gotten the most tech money by far — more than the rest of the field combined, thanks in large part to Larry Ellison. Jeb Bush, former governor of Florida, is a distant second, followed closely by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT). New Jersey governor Chris Christie and Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) are the only other candidates with significant tech contributions so far. Carly Fiorina, a tech industry veteran, has only managed about $13,000 in donations.

The nicest thing about the Alto is that it doesn't run faster at night.

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