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Comment Re:In Germany you have 14 months by law (Score 1) 103

So, just have a kid every year and live on the dole.

There is this little, teensy side effect of actually having the kids and having to take care of them... I take it you are not a parent. After having a few, you might understand that the first year is likely not the most difficult - especially with multiple kids.

Comment Re:News for Facebook employees (Score 1) 103

Why would non-Facebook employees be interested in this at all?

I have a friend who works at another silicon valley startup (same VC partners as Facebook) who recently adopted Netflx's unlimited vacation, and they may also be interested in doing the 4-month prenatal leave as well.

Facebook could be a high-profile benefits leader here. As much as I don't like FB, I respect this move. At least Zuck is fair and consistent on this, unlike Meyer.

Comment Re: Bias? (Score 1) 103

you think there will be social security when we retire? (im under 30) doubt it

Social Security trust fund is solvent till ~2035 given current input percentages and projected workforce makeup .

What's likely is that GOP and corporate-licking Dems will both agree to fuck you over in the meanwhile and do something shitty like raise retirement age, or twist verbiage to deny COLA despite constant hikes in non-core inflation rate (why would energy - read gas - and healthcare costs not be "core inflation"?).

So you may be right, you may not have a meaningful Social Security when you retire. But I bet it'll be there.

Comment Re:Bad stuff happens in war (Score 2) 255

Both sides are guilty of atrocities, but this being Slashdot... I'd rather the side that has an industry of designing CPUs for Intel beat the side that has a bizarre totalitarian religion that routinely generates suicide bombers.

One has a totalitarian martyrhood culture, and the other is using them as substitute culprits to avenge the Holocaust on. Why side with either? Unless, of course, your apocalyptic cult sees Israel as a key to its end-of-the-world prophecies, which seems to be the case for alarmingly many people.

Comment Re:The treaty says no such thing. (Score 1) 171

200 parts per million might be insanely rich, but it also means you have to process over 300 pounds of ore to extract 1 oz of platinum. That's nothing to a terrestrial mining operation which might crush several tons of rock to recover a single ounce of gold, but remember they do that with mass-is-no-object machinery and consuming, from a spacecraft point of view, unthinkable amounts of power. In space operations mass and power matters a great deal.

Getting the energy into the ore is easy. Getting it out again is the hard part.

Comment Re:the main legit use i can see (Score 2) 159

The city where I live has three airports roughly 1/3 of the way around the circle, so each of those airports has a six-mile no-fly zone making huge areas off limits.

Really? How do you use an airport in a no-fly zone? What airports actually have is controlled airspace, which means that you need to ask for (and receive) permission from the airport before you can fly, and you need to be in constant communication with the tower so they can for example tell you to ditch your drone if it interferes with someone having an emergency. It's not a no-fly zone.

Comment Re:Sorry guys, Israel doesn't care what you think. (Score 1, Flamebait) 255

Israel is not trying to censor speech. They're trying to stop incitement.

Maybe their soldiers should stop executing people in the streets if they don't want videos of their soldiers executing people in the streets to be on the internet. That would be, like, the fastest way to avoid any more of those videos being posted.

Comment Re:Supernova Required (Score 1) 180

Actually it did not have to come from anywhere. Energy conservation relies on the laws of physics being constant in time. However since the Big Bang probably created those laws that would mean that it changed them and hence energy would not have to be conserved and so could be created. Alternatively it is possible that the Big Band created time itself in which case there was no such concept as energy before it (although "before" is hard to define in such a case).

Comment Re:What about other life goals? (Score 1) 103

I used the unpaid example to draw a sharper contrast. A large block of time off is generally unavailable under any terms, except at companies like FB (or apparently everywhere in Europe) that explicitly call out child-rearing.

Since you seem to know of the system: If European democracies have a state system for paying for the leave, did the debate include proposals to allow payments for other avocations?

Europe is a big place and it probably varies to jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but I'd say generally no. I know that here in Norway there are a few other exceptions where the government may step in and pay like if you're giving care to someone seriously ill because you're a de facto replacement for public healthcare but for personal projects you are on your own. It has been suggested though that those who want to be slackers can be employed for a relatively short while, then go on unemployment benefits while making crap applications for jobs they won't get, flunk interviews and in general be unemployable while formally meeting the requirements. For the more serious people though I know some that have gotten 6-12 months unpaid leave to pursue some personal dream in the private sector, in the public sector it's even easier.

I think this very much relates to the use of overtime and wage politics, in Europe you generally have to pay for every hour and to be honest you're usually paying overpaying unskilled/untrained people and underpaying your best people. Which means that if good employees don't get their leave and instead quit thinking their CV is good enough to get re-employed a year later you as an employer lose. They have to deal with similar leaves quite often for the 50% that's female and we also have a shorter paternity leave, so really there's no reason to be a dick about it. I guess it depends on why though, if you're starting a competing business then no.... the one I know who got a 12 month leave sailed around the world. Pretty bold move, but it was also fairly certain he'd be coming back. I think it takes a large company though, the smaller the harder it'll be.

Comment Re:Has to be better than USPS (Score 3, Insightful) 159

Amazon has been in bed with the devil for a couple of years now. Nearly everything I order comes by USPS - the slowest, least reliable delivery service on Earth.

This is in direct opposition to my experience.

The Post Office doesn't seem to understand that this is their last best chance to stay relevant and possibly get out of the red. Nope, they're sticking to their old ways - yesterday's technology delivering your packages tomorrow (or next week).

Huh? Oh I see - your experience of their service is essentially filtered by your dogma (that the post office as part of the "government" is not hip enough). Keep in mind, that the USPS as a private entity that's highly controlled by Congressional edicts and orders (like this one mandating that they essentially have to run in debt to pay retirements for employees not even hired yet [1]. If you have an issue with USPS maybe you should take it up with your representative.

Another thing you have to keep in mind, is that the USPS actually fulfills a lot of orders for UPS/FedEx - UPS/Fedex simply can't compete with the USPS for hard-to-reach areas, whereas the USPS has mandates to do so, and so has found a way to do it. [2]


Comment Re:Apple would reject 100% CPU app (Score 1) 331

I thought 100% CPU loops in a background application were exactly what the App Store review process was designed to prevent.

Unfortunately, first-party code doesn't go through that same process. I was thinking in particular about a recent experience with spotlight indexing when I made that snarky comment.

Comment Re:The treaty says no such thing. (Score 0) 171

As unseemly as it might be to Canadians, an unrestrained land-grab in space is the most likely vehicle to spur progress.

It is also very likely to spur wars over territorial claims...hence the treaty preventing such claims. However extracting material from the asteroid and bringing it back to Earth seems like a perfectly allowed action under the treaty so long as the company does not try to claim that it is a US asteroid which they are mining.

Stellar rays prove fibbing never pays. Embezzlement is another matter.