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Comment Very short term review would be useful too. (Score 0) 167

I don't know about savings ads for a long time, but I would love a queue of the last 100 ads that I've seen pass my screen.
So many times I've clicked a link on a web page and at the last second seen some interesting looking ad out of the corner of my eye. When I hit back on the browser, the random-ad-generator hates me, and won't show what I've just been looking at.

Sounds stupid, but it would be really super useful.

Slashdot is actually one of the biggest offenders here (that, and a few of the webcomics I frequent).

Yes, I have the "Disable Advertising" option.
No, I don't use it.

Comment Re:Just goes to show... (Score 5, Informative) 313

Please be aware that we don't have 'Free Speech' laws in Canada like those protected by the First Amendment in the USA.

What we have instead is a freedom of expression (Section 2b of our Charter of Rights and Freedoms). The Freedom of Expression is very similar, but not quite as wide reaching as those rights protected by the 1st Amendment in the US Constitution.

One of the subtle differences is that you are free to express anything you like, as long as neither the message, nor the means of conveying that message, is considered illegal under another law. There aren't many cases where another law infringes on the freedom of expression, but one notable example is the Canadian Hate Crimes laws, which prohibit the proliferation of hate material based on ethnicity, religion, sexual preference, etc.

Comment Top 10 brand comment very misleading. (Score 2, Informative) 468

The comment about the 'Top 10 brands' in the post is very misleading.

"...the sites of 10 out of 10 leading worldwide brands don't display on the iPad..."

What is actually demonstrated is that "...the sites of 10 out of 10 leading [LUXURY] brands don't display on the iPad..."

The top 10 brands (listed here: http://www.interbrand.com/best_global_brands.aspx) are:
Coca-Cola, IBM, Microsoft, GE, Nokia, McDonalds, Google, Toyota, Intel, Disney

The top 10 luxury brands reviewed in the article are:
Prada, Fendi, Moet, Cartier, Hennessy, Rolex, Channel, Gucci, Hermes, Louis Vuitton

Could we get a summary correction to specify that it's actually the Luxury brands that are looked at, not 'normal' brands? I think it's a pretty important distinction, as the luxury brands likely have much less traffic, and have traditionally not been designed for content consumption but are more advertising platforms.

Comment Re:Can't deny for pre-existing, but at what cost? (Score 1) 2424

OK, for the record, I agree with you.
The entire premise of a for-profit health insurance system makes no sense to me. Based upon the vitriolic response, I guess I didn't make that clear enough in the previous post -- sorry about that. *waves socialist peace flag*

What I'm wondering about, is how the American system will function. As a non-American (Canadian living in France), I really don't have any idea.

In only one of my examples (the drunk driver) do I place any blame on the insured. In all other cases, I'm trying to represent how the insurer - someone that is trying to maximize their own profit (again, something I disagree with) - would view the situation.

They need to mitigate their own financial risk somehow if they are to make a profit, presumably this will take the form of charging low risk clients (young healthy people) less than high risk clients (old, sick, or old sick people).

There is a really common complaint that I've seen a lot about the new provisions. And that is that it is financially a better choice to remain uninsured and pay the financial penalty until such time that you are sick. When you become really sick, then you should apply for insurance. This whole argument is based on the idea that taking out insurance only when you will use it will cost you the same as if you took out insurance years before.

I have to believe that this is not the way it works, but I don't honestly know. This is why I'm asking.

As for your question "Should you really pay less because you've been lucky enough to enjoy good health?"
I don't think so, and that's why I support socialized, state-run medical coverage for all. But, if you were a for-profit, publicly traded health insurance company, then you'd financially foolish to think otherwise. Or, at least, I don't understand the economics behind any other decision.

Comment Can't deny for pre-existing, but at what cost? (Score 1) 2424

I've seen a lot of people talking about the clause that says that insurance companies cannot deny you insurance for pre-existing conditions.

One thing that's never clear to me is whether they are allowed to charge you a premium for pre-existing conditions. I assume yes: can anyone enlighten me?

For example, lets say two people apply for health insurance. One is a smoker that has had cancer that is in remission, and the other has had a clean bill of health their whole life.
In theory, under the previous rules, the insurance companies were able to either turn away the one with cancer, or charge him outrageous premiums to cover their risk.

Now, the insurance companies cannot turn him away. But, they can still charge higher premiums, right?
It would make no sense to me if each of these guys was paying the same price, but this seems that most comments about the issue are suggesting that they would be the same price.

For reference, I've been comparing it to car insurance.
If I have a perfect drivers record (clean bill of health) I should be able to buy cheap insurance.
If I have gotten a few tickets, or into a no-fault accident (pre-existing condition), I should be able to buy insurance, but would expect to pay a little more.
If I have a sports car and live in a bad neighborhood (chronic condition), I should be able to buy insurance, but would expect to pay a lot more.
If I got drunk and crashed into a pizza hut (pre-existing condition that could be controlled: smoking, obesity due to lifestyle, heavy drug user), I should be able to buy insurance, but either with heavily reduced coverage or dramatically higher premiums.

Is this how it works with medical insurance under the new rules?

Comment Explaining error messges is what support is for. (Score 4, Funny) 951

I had a lengthy discussion with some of our field engineers, and a few of our customers, about a year ago about how they use the documentation to troubleshoot problems. My main goal was to see if there was something that we could do to get customers to read the docs more (and call support less).

Eventually, someone cut to the heart of the issue from there side. Basically, he said "Do you know how much I pay each year for my support contract? No? Well, it's a lot. If I have any problems that don't fix themselves in under five minutes, I'm going to pick up the phone and call you. I'm paying you to support me if I have trouble, I shouldn't have to troubleshoot it myself."

Comment Rather see generic, than too specific. (Score 1) 1049

I prefer a generic email address if at all possible. yourname@{gmail | hotmail | yahoo}.com or something like that.

Anything crazy before the @ is bad news.
I don't mind too much what comes after the @, with one exception. If you have a domain that I am not familiar with (for example, yourname.com) I am going to go and check out whats there, and I *will* judge you on what I find.

Specifically if it includes anything non-professional. yourname@yourname.com is perfectly ok, as long as yourname.com isn't a website about torrents, nakedness, complaining about your previous boss, doing anything at all with questionable legality, etc. in which case it becomes as bad as seeing yourname@{istealsoftware | lookatmenaked | ihatemyboss | chronic4life }.com

Comment An alternative to completely open. (Score 5, Interesting) 274

I moved to France last year and was pleasantly surprised at the ISPs attitudes towards sharing wifi.

My provider, Free.fr, by default enables guest access on my router. However, it's not completely open.
In order to access the connect, you must enter your account details (login and password), and then you are given access to a limited connection.
Should you not want to share your connection with other people, you can easily disable this feature; but doing so also disables your account from being able to access roaming wifi.

I really love that the community sharing feature is enabled by default.
As long as I'm willing to share my connection with other subscribers, then I get access to their bandwidth when I'm away from home. And, as one of the larger providers in the area, this means I have access from just about anywhere I go.

Comment Omnioutliner or Jira (Score 1) 428

At home (on my mac) I use omnioutliner. I love it, and it perfectly describes what you are looking for.
I was unable to find an equivalent on windows though.

At work, we used clearquest for a long time. A while back, my company did a big internal search for something different. We evaluated about 5 different tools, and eventually settled on Jira. I absolutely love it. I'd suggest taking a look at that tool.
(Note: We still use Clearquest for core dev, but added Jira for internal tools.)

Comment Re:I can't work with music (Score 1) 1019

Ever tried foreign language music?

I once accidentally stumbled across some Indian music on a co-workers share. This stuff is great for ambience. There's no way that I will understand even a word of Hindi/Urdu, so my brain doesn't even try, and you get the advantage of having more variety than you would get with instrumental/techno alone.

I've tried other languages as well. I find it's best if its something completely incomprehensible to me. Bollywood, J-POP, Chinese, etc. Anything that's close to English (german, french, spanish, etc) is close enough that I start listening to the words again.

Comment If you must stop, buy some good earplugs (Score 1) 1019

For about 6 months, I sat in a cubicle that faced a sales guy. As part of his job, he was on the phone about 6 hours a day, talking right at me.

My solution in the end was to go to a hardware store and buy some construction grade ear protection - the over the head, earmuff style that you see on people operating jackhammers. Cost me about 20 bucks, and almost completely drowned out everything around me. (They are about as good in an office setting as the bose noise cancelling headphones, and about 90% cheaper)

It also sends a clear message to those around you. When I had headphones on, people thought I was listening to music for enjoyment. When you put these things on, it sends a very clear STFU, I'm trying to think, message. (OK, it did feel a little juvenile, but after a few days, it was fine. People understood that I didn't hate them, I just needed some quiet, and this was the easiest way to accomplish it without sssh-ing everyone around me.)

As an alternative, I've actually found that even just having headphones on, but no music playing (assuming large, over the ear kind) is pretty effective as well. It drowns out some of the noise, and has the added benefit that people assume you can't hear them, so they don't talk to you. I actually spend about half of my day with earphones on that aren't playing a sound. When I'm doing something easy, I turn on the tunes, when I have to think, I turn them off but leave the headphones on.

If you spent the next week with the headphones on, but the cord clearly lying on your desk, unplugged, I think that might help your boss understand that the phones are not what he thinks they are for.

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