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Comment Re:Bandiwidth is *free* fallacy.. (Score 1) 229

So, it's to be a battle of wits, is it?

First, I gather you know much of the US has nowhere to go if they want to switch, making your first point moot. But, I fail to see how it's any different from any other business doing cost analysis based on estimates.

Reasonably populated areas in Europe pay far less than reasonably populated areas in the US. New York City and San Francisco, two big cities, have some of the worst service in the country. Why? Effective regional monopolies. NYC is suing Verizon for failing to meet terms. Verizon doesn't want to build more. Can't imagine why. (Simply, costs more to maintain than wireless. Why serve customers when you don't have to?)

And yes, I carefully worded that because I'm not a network engineer for a major ISP and don't know how they over-subscribe. I thought I made it clear that is acceptable practice but if not: that is obviously acceptable practice. Theoretical peak is just that: theoretical. I'm not going to make a case for a restaurant to build out for unused tables and will not make the case for an ISP to build out for unused bandwidth. Both are silly. Again, I thought that was clear. Haha, wasted your time.

The argument is ISPs are, in fact, super-villains. Why? Data caps have nothing to do with over-subscribing or bandwidth management. I'm not comparing this to restaurants because the analogy would be poor. In fact, none of what you argued have anything to do with the reason most people hate their ISP. Bits are not consumed. The only scarcity is bandwidth. Restaurants have a max capacity but that does not cap the speed at which people can be moved in and out. People would be pissed if they were rushed because they had a time cap and would go elsewhere. Whoops, I did what I said I wouldn't do. And yep, the analogy is awful.

Comment Re:Bandiwidth is *free* fallacy.. (Score 1) 229


Private companies have been put under the regulation gun before. Why should it be any different whether it's an ISP or an electric company? I'm pretty sure phone companies in the US are/were under pricing regulation (as long as they use POTS lines, thanks to loopholes). This is what happens with virtual monopolies -- and, in some regions, actual monopolies.

Of course, it shouldn't have to be like this. There should be competition so consumers have somewhere to go when they don't like one carrier's policies. But, they've crafted themselves regional monopolies. Until local-loop unbundling is a thing, this will never happen.

Sufficient Bandwidth

Ok, let's define sufficient bandwidth. If you have 1000 customers on a node and they're all at your max tier, say 50 MB/s, you need 500,000 MB/s on that node to support theoretical peak bandwidth. Of course, the node will rarely if ever reach 500,000 MB/s and ISPs know this so, naturally, they'll do some percentage lower, say, 75% theoretical peak. They probably set this number based on a monthly (yearly, likely, or else I'd rarely have to complain about persistent bandwidth issues) report of max bandwidth in a node.

But, we're forgetting that until they upgrade those routers, their costs are mostly comprised of replacing aging hardware (ROFL) and paying employees, along with putting away billions for the CEO's severance package (I'm bitter). How does this differ from a shipping company who has to replace aging trucks, or purchase more trucks as their business grows? The analogy isn't 100% but it's a damn shot closer than Oreos vs. bits. If the actual peak bandwidth rises above "sufficient", then purchase more/bigger routers/another node for more customers.

An ISP is a business that, once it has a footprint, won't grow much. The ISPs around the US have carved out their own sections and detest anyone creeping into their regions. Thus, their expansion can and will flatline. How else are they supposed to grow their income? I can't fault them for wanting to do so but I can fault them their methods. That said, my electric company isn't growing its income.

It's past time ISPs become utilities or, better yet: must not control both the last mile and "first mile", and cannot be part of a content company.

Comment Re:Bandiwidth is *free* fallacy.. (Score 3, Insightful) 229

No one's saying bandwidth is free. We're saying the bits are free. There's a difference. Bandwidth is how many bits per second. Bits is a file transfer or data being streamed. A sliver of a frame of a video. A single millisecond of a song. Once sufficient bandwidth is in place, it costs an ISP nothing if you're downloading at 1 MB/s or 1 GB/s. Other people may suffer at the hands of your use of the total bandwidth at your area of the Internet but the costs do not change because they don't have to put bits into the hardware so that some can be used to give you your video, song, file, etc. You do, however, have to put Oreos in the truck.

Because the bits, the thing being transferred, are there whether you use them or not. What we call "used" bits is just some program deeming the electrons flowing into your data port actual data instead of garbage. Therefore, you cannot "use up" bits and the infuriating part is these people spouting the nonsense work for the ISPs in some fashion or another and should know this. Oreos, on the other hand, stop flowing when they are all gone and must be manufactured. Bits are not manufactured. They are charging for both the bits and the bandwidth, when the bits cost them almost nothing. The cost is the device to manage the bits (the "router"), which is not nothing but would may cost a $20,000. Compared to an ISP's income, that's grains of sand.

I feel like I'm wasting my time talking to an AC. With sufficient knowledge of how the Internet works, you understand that data caps are a way to create artificial scarcity. The common uses are to prop up a dying business model or to extract extra money.

Comment Can't blame them but I can call them out on it (Score 1) 131

Some suits at Atlantic are probably pissed at whatever money they lost from the song leaking early due to deals with other companies for digital or physical distribution rights. Are they right to be? Probably. They probably got paid or paid out for exclusivity or something. And, now that the song is out in the wild, some suits at some other companies are probably suing for breach of duties about piracy. As it is, some people won't bother buying it from iTunes/Spotify/Amazon/etc. They will try any way they can to find out who did it to please the parties involved so they can say it will never happen again -- or they may not be able to strike deals with those parties in the future on risk of lost money.

What money lost? It's probably mostly artificial: some clause probably said they owe money if it gets leaked; someone will probably cancel their contract due to lack of trust; lost sales due to "piracy"; they are no longer among the "exclusive" distributors, etc.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong; do I have all that right?

And do I ultimately feel bad for the label? No. Probably none of this puts money into the artist's hands, just the people at the label, and these kinds of deals are never what the customer wants anyway.

Comment Re:Compromise? Never heard of it! (Score 1) 338

While I would believe this is true, I don't think it's entirely intentional. Both sides are fighting like toddlers, beholden to their bribery donations, to keep their briberies coming.

It's funny. The company I work for has yearly training. One of them is Ethics, which they make a big deal out of. Conflicts of interest, bribery, accepting gifts/donations, etc. are especially frowned upon. It's drilled home so finely that even the stupidest idiot can understand the concepts given by the examples, videos and explanatory text in the training curriculum. So it's illegal for most companies but for government it's perfectly legal. I just did my Ethics training today. I take it back -- it's not funny, it's fucking sad.

Comment Re:Bullshit ... (Score 1) 338

These days I've been questioning the motives of the "Repulicunts". Free market principles seem to go out the window with big "donations". Is it just me or would this proposed move from the FCC be exactly in line with what the Republican party stands for? Granted, the net neutrality proposal would be against it but I don't see how removing a barrier to competition would be against the Republican's principles. It should be the Democrats complaining.

Comment Compromise? Never heard of it! (Score 5, Insightful) 338

So according to this guy, we should never make laws or decisions that don't have complete bi-partisan support because the other side will try to repeal it. How would anything get done? At that, we wouldn't have any laws at all. Did he even listen to what he said?

I swear, man. Congresscritters sound more like whiny children every day. This is the epitome of politicians' refusal to compromise on anything. The general intelligence of people in politics must steadily be dropping. They better stay where they are because they sure can't do anything else.

Comment Re:Interesting... (Score 1) 117

The civil unrest is pretty tangible on the circles I visit on the Internet, and that's spilling over into Real Life (tm). Congress' approval rating is at an all-time low. This country has been around 400 years. It's never been lower. (Okay, it was probably lower back when the Tea Party actually meant something.)

Now, I'm not saying it's going to happen, but sometimes I think this country just needs another civil war against its government. After all, the United States was founded by British colonialists taking up arms against their government. Why couldn't it happen again? I'm sure some parts of the country are closer to doing so than others.

It's hard to fight back within the bounds of the law when the law is so against you.

Comment Re:crossed the 5million mark at about 9:30 Eastern (Score 1) 117

"Voting is cool but it's not enough to make a democracy." True in so many ways.

You did read the bits about the fact that voting seems to have no effect most of the time? (Or how about this one.)

Anecdotal evidence could work here just as well. Citizens United represents everything you need to know about politics in the United States. If you don't have enough money, you don't have enough "free speech." The polls say more than 90% of the country does not want Comcast to buy Time Warner Cable, and for some good reasons. Do you think that'll sway the regulators, who are being smooched up the ass by Comcast lobbyists?

Or what about what happened to Obama's election promises about getting rid of lobbyists and being transparent? I do believe he was pressured by the incumbents into changing his mind. He might have been honest when he first got elected, but, as they say, the system is too strong. He got borged into it.

Comment Want to learn how to make a game? Just do it. (Score 2) 254

I started by working with the Quake 3 engine and seeing what I could do to it. I wound up modifying the guns by adding new firing modes, modifying how the camera a little and learned how to add effects to the game.

Then I messed around with the trigger editor in Starcraft.

Then I messed around with the trigger editor in Warcraft 3 and made a lot more complex things, including implementing the character progression system from a single game from a popular Japanese RPG series -- which shall remain nameless -- in a tower defense map. (It was an awesome-bad project.)

What did I find? This taught me the basics of game programming as well as a lot of about algorithms. It made me a better programmer. Then I made some Starcraft 2 maps, one of which was a port of a Warcraft 3 map. Then I said fuck this, and took the RPG I started in Warcraft 3, moved to Starcraft 2, and I now have a 2D RPG game engine written from scratch for PC that is well beyond the progress of either of the maps it came from. I would argue you don't learn to program games in a language. You just learn the paradigms used to make a game work, and then apply that to a language. You want to learn? Do it. Books may help if you get stuck along the way, but do yourself a favor and stick to libraries if they exist. No one wants to draw their own fonts or write a PNG loader.

Although yes, you may learn some more about the language you're using along the way. I learned a lot about C++. Try to stick with learning to do things The Right Way (tm) and you will surprise yourself with what you learn. For the record, I wrote my own game engine because I wanted to learn how to do that. I sometimes wonder if I should have used a ready-made engine but the learning experience is massive, although I don't recommend it for everyone. I am quite insane.

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