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Comment Re:I think $3.2B is too much (Score 1) 257

I own a Nest thermostat and while it's a great and innovative device I don't see the company being worth $3.2B.

To be fair, we don't know what products Nest has in the pipeline that only Google and their other investment partners know about.

Also, remember, Google Ventures was a big shareholder early on in Nest - they may effectively be paying themselves quite a chunk of change.

Comment Re:Rule #1 (Score 3, Insightful) 894

Fortunately, not only did the founding fathers author the Constitution, they also transcribed their struggles in each side fighting for what they believed belonged in the Constitution. These were called the Federalist Papers, and demonstrate how completely wrong you are.

Not to mention the numerous state constitutions at the time that were worded more bluntly regarding the individual right to bear arms.

Comment Re:Amazon S3 (Score 2) 49

Well, essentially that's the backend for Dropbox - they are a service built on top of S3.

However, if you don't need your files often, but rather just want a place to archive them, you can take a look at Amazon Glacier - an archiving and backup solution. You can even implement lifecycle policies inside your S3 buckets to automatically move files older than X days from S3 to Glacier, which is much cheaper.

Comment Re:I've got a better idea (Score 1) 307

there isn't some mystical open source fairy that can tell you how to correctly predict load for a system like this and make all the infrastructure work the way you want it to.

You mean they haven't built an infrastructure whereby you can design and build your software to support a near-infinite level of scaling?

If only we lived in a world where Amazon Web Services and their competitors existed.

Comment Re:1000 lb gorilla (Score 1) 187

Wall Street still keeps their stock price up because of rising revenues so Amazon can borrow money with impunity to make up for these losses. This allows them to keep dropping prices even when they are losing money. A small company cannot do this.

Sure they can, though likely they will do it through private equity, not Wall Street. The problem is that few small companies know how to dramatically increase their revenue by creating new industries like cloud computing, and reselling sunk costs like external fulfillment.

It isn't hard to raise revenues when you don't have to care about profitability or cash flow when setting your prices.

Do you really think Amazon doesn't care about profitability or cash flow? Do you believe their business model is, "Fuck it, sell it at a loss, Wall Street will bail us out?"

Comment Shelf life (Score 4, Informative) 528

with rumored shelf life on the order of the time span to cool a white dwarf to room temperature

From the AP:

During bankruptcy proceedings, Hostess had said that its overall sales had been declining, although the company didn't give a breakout on the performance of individual brands. But Seban is confident Twinkies will have staying power beyond its re-launch.

As for the literal shelf-life, Seban is quick to refute the snack cake's fabled indestructibility.

"Forty-five days - that's it," he said. "They don't last forever."

Comment Re:2nd Amendment Question (Score 1) 551

Where do you draw the line between what is and isn't a firearm?

Does the 2nd Amendment allow (in your mind at least) a citizen to have a rocket launcher or a laser gun?

A good question and one that comes up often. The United States Supreme Court has actually clarified the answer to your question in Heller v. DC (2008):

2. Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose: For example, concealed weapons prohibitions have been upheld under the Amendment or state analogues. The Court's opinion should not be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms. Miller's holding that the sorts of weapons protected are those "in common use at the time" finds support in the historical tradition of prohibiting the carrying of dangerous and unusual weapons. Pp. 54-56.

Basically, if a firearm is in common use and not unusual, it shall be protected, but no, the "rocket launcher" would be considered unusual.

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