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Comment Re:bullet in the head (Score 1) 524

Your point is taken, but it might be better worded: "After years of watching Yahoo twitching on the gurney, Mayer is finally putting a bullet in their head."
Otherwise, it sounds as though Mayer is the one doing the twitching on the gurney. Which I suppose she was, back in October when she was delivering her baby boy. Could have been done on a gurney.

Comment Re:Why not popular? (Score 1) 245

Are you figuring in the $16,000 to $18,000 cost of an economy sedan?

Or the $24,000 for an SUV or more option-laden vehicle that many opt for (on monthly payments)?

Even if you're paying $100 for a public transport monthly pass, it would take around 15 years to make up for purchasing a vehicle, and that's not even counting fuel, insurance, and maintenance costs. Then there's the risk to life and limb that is much lower for bus/train riders.

Comment Re:How was it broken into again? (Score 1) 272

What if they're wearing ski masks or stockings over their faces? So much for high def cameras.

The question in my mind is, what is motivating these crooks to break into this office? If it's such a lean, barebones kind of operation, I wonder what it is that makes thieves think, this room must have valuable stuff that is worth the risk?

Maybe they should move their office to a safer neighborhood. Or, remove all the bars and obvious theft-deterrence stuff (keep the hidden cams and alarms, if they're already in place) and take the hard disks home at night. Lock down the gear such as monitors and CPUs with cables strong enough to satisfy the insurance company, don't keep a box of petty cash, empty the filing cabinet and make the company files virtual, and leave it at that.

Or maybe let your friend's Rottweiler sleep in the office every night for a few months. The gang that's working that neighborhood will get the message and stay away.

Comment Re:maybe they read xkcd (Score 4, Insightful) 108

Actually that's pretty spot-on. I hate how every news organization today has to have its own downloadable app. "Welcome to the South Butt-hole Sentinel! Click OK to download our app! Or [typesize=0.001]click here to continue to site."

I don't want to have a whole menagerie of single-site news apps of varying quality and usability. Aggregator apps such as Currents and Flipboard are a step in the right direction, but they leave me cold as well; they're weird, they pick and choose articles they think I want to see (usually off the mark) and a lot of the periodical's value is lost in translation. Among other things, the talkbacks are stripped out and these days, I find the talkbacks more entertaining and, sometimes more informative, than the original article.

Comment Re:what (Score 1) 443

"nowadays"? How old are you? This has always been the way of the world. Ideals and outliers aside, journalism is not about telling the complete truth and nothing but the truth. It's about making a name for oneself, influencing decisionmakers, having power over people.

As for "justice", this too has always been an arbitrary, agenda-driven kind of goal. This poor, depressed kid was obviously victimized by an abusive DOJ prosecutor trying to make a name for herself. His conviction would not have brought any kind of justice. All he did was unlock something that millions of college students and professors and affiliated academics already have full access to. Thirty-five years! This Ortiz is the one who should go to prison.

Comment Re:Funny (Score 5, Insightful) 82

Patents are definitely a big problem for start-ups. When you are big enough to have a Legal Department with an Intellectual Property specialist or three, you can maybe deal with all the patent trolls out there not to mention the few legitimate patents that may challenge your product.

But for the rest of us, it's an almost insurmountable challenge. Once when I was trying to develop a voicemail contraction (yeah this was sort of pre-cell phone and pre-Google Voice and all that nice stuff we have today) for small offices, I was astounded by the kinds of patents out there. Some guy patented a "method to push a button to record a voice". Someone else patented a "method to store voice recordings in digital format in computer memory". Was I as a one person start-up going to have to find a way around ridiculously obvious patents like this?

So if someone big comes along and offers you a million or two for your baby company, it's going to be awfully tempting. Then again, as I recall, Microsoft offered the Netscape guys about $20 million for their browser back in the early Web days. They politely declined and went on to be worth hundreds of millions. It's a tough call to make, but you do have to be a bit of a gambler if you want to really make it big.

Comment Elizabeth Warren had the right idea. (Score 1, Interesting) 622

She registered herself as a minority, which under Virginia's system would guarantee that her children got special treatment on "standardized" tests. Although, what kind of minority are Cherokee? Would they be filed under disadvantaged, or under superior? Given their genetic similarity and shared ancestry with Asians (probably Mongolians and central Asians, but in S. America more aboriginal Asians from Indonesia and Malaysia) they would be classified as superior, hence their scores would be curved down.

It boggles the mind. Virginia must be run by true idiots, to think they could get away with this.

Comment Re:Great news (Score 1) 467

Shoot from the hip much? There's centuries of oil and gas locked in shale, at current use rates.

It's quite likely that alternatives like solar will improve to the point where they displace coal and gas on the electric side.

Probably, transportation will become more efficient with hybrid engines taking the lead.

Wind energy still has lots of potential. Nuclear technology has improved enormously since the 1970s.

By 2100, it's highly unlikely we'll still be using significant fossil fuels. That is a safe enough prediction. But today, and for the next 20-30 years, we will be relying on fossil fuels, and a lot of it is going to be from shale (and tar sands). Get used to it.

Comment Re:If there was a Bad at Math Map... (Score 1, Insightful) 1163

A couple of observations:

Southerners are over-represented in the military (in fact, "red" counties all over the nation would tend to be over-represented), and there are a lot of military bases and installations around the South and Southwest. If the money-in versus money-out formula takes into account military spending, then this should be factored out. Military service is giving, not taking. Bases create jobs, but they are a component of national defense, not some sort of charity.

Memo to the winners: be gracious in victory even if those who lose are not gracious in defeat. You're not 5-year-olds, are you?

It ought to be acceptable to register dissatisfaction with the election results in this free country of ours. When Bush was designated the victor in 2000, many Democrats spent the next four years saying "the President Select" and "Bush stole the election" and all sorts of nasty things. Yet, when the NYT and Tribute did a recount in Florida in two different ways, they still found for Bush no matter how charitable they were to the ambiguous ballots. Bush won, yet a good chunk of the electorate refused to accept it. Of course, then 9/11 happened and the country had to pull together and put this behind us, at least for a short while.

This is not a football game. It's a referendum on the future of our country. If 48% of the people were so dissatisfied with the incumbent's performance that they registered a protest vote against him, then the winning party should take heed and be prepared to compromise. It's not about winning one lousy election; it's about leading a huge country and making decisions that will affect the entire world. It can't be all-or-nothing, folks. That goes for both sides.

Secession is scary. It may be laughable to some of you--listen to those dumbass hicks clinging to their guns and religion and yada yada yada. But the more you talk that way, the worse the situation will get, until one day we may actually be faced with millions of people who no longer accept or respect the authority of the elected national government. We don't want it to get to that point. The way to avoid this is to work with the opposition and hammer out compromises. The Democrats failed to compromise from 2008-2010, feeling they didn't need to, and in 2010 they reaped the results.

The important thing isn't that Romney lost, but that he came that close to winning. He took 24 states, in some cases by a 2-to-1 margin. Admittedly, he was perceived as a relatively weak and flawed candidate, personally disliked by large swaths of the electorate (fairly or unfairly). Just imagine if he hadn't uttered the 47% remark; that one gaffe might have cost him 100,000 votes in a state like Ohio where Obama won literally by 104,000. The point is, Obama does not have a strong mandate and would do well to incorporate some of the moderate and conservative fiscal ideas into his policies going forward.

Comment Great news (Score 1) 467

Lots for Americans to celebrate here:

Anything that helps to wean us off Middle Eastern, North African, and Venezuelan oil is a good thing. War, support for nasty dictatorships, terrorism, patrolling the Persian Gulf: it all goes away, or becomes someone else's problem.

Natural gas is a much cleaner way to generate electricity than coal.

Jobs, and lots of them.

Cheap gas = more local chemical and plastics plants, which depend on the stuff.

Energy exports help our balance of trade.

It helps prove that private sector ingenuity and enterprise are still a good thing. The government has had little or nothing to do with this, other than throw obstacles in their path.

There's no proven ecological harm from fracking, and if there will be, solutions can surely be found. For example, tainted water supplies can be prevented by keeping the wells correctly sealed.

Comment Why OpenOffice? (Score 2) 71

Maybe this is a dumb question, but why do we still have the split between Open* and Libre*? Now that OpenOffice has been handed off from Oracle to Apache Foundation, isn't it equally open source again? So ideally, the best ideas of both packages should be merged into one product and then the top talent can be applied to improving it.

I notice LibreOffice is also talking about an online version. To me, this seems like a lot of redundant effort.

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