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Comment Re:What do I think? (Score 1) 225

There is nothing that providing a laptop per child affords that can't be accomplished through classroom media presentation devices (computer & projector) and a good school computer lab.

Homework. Many poorer kids do not have a computer at home, and a smartphone is terrible for writing papers and research. The laptop/tablet is also locked down so distractions are kept to a minimum.

These devices will only be a distraction and huge expense for families and schools as millions of them are broken every year.

Hyperbole. Citation needed. Yesterday's article about iPads in Coachella said district-wide there were less than 10 lost or stolen. How does that scale up to millions?

Comment Sounds like the modem debate from 20 years ago (Score 3, Interesting) 225

USRobotics kept walking around and saying their modems were the #1 selling modem. This is analogous of what Apple is doing today.

However, while USR was the #1 brand, most modems sold overall had the Rockwell chipset, with most brands simply adding a plastic box and different color LEDs.

More recently, Apple claims that the iPhone is the #1 selling phone. However, phones that use Android sell the most, period.

I shouldn't be, but I'm always surprised how religious people get when their favorite electronics company is shown to be extremely misleading. I know a guy that I'd known for years who threatened to "unfriend" simply because I refuted his claim that the iPhone was the #1 phone.

So this iPad/Chromebook issue is just another chapter of misleading sales tactics. But if you look at what Apple actually says officially, they're very specific in the literature. Unfortunately, people will be blind to anything that might change their worldview... and any company would be nuts not to take advantage of that.

Comment Blame Motorola (Score 1) 236

Motorola couldn't manufacture enough of the 68K CPUs, so Apple set up an alliance with IBM and Motorola (AIM). The first generation of the PowerPC was fast and easily manufactured.

Motorola sold Apple on AltiVec, the 128bit vector unit, and it was added to the PowerPC.

Once again, problems with the design and just sheer Motorola incompetence caused CPU production to fall behind. IBM, seeing the writing on the wall, bailed.

Apple, finally tired of Motorola's crap, ported everything to Intel, and left without looking back. Too bad it took them 20 years to realize this.

Motorola became synonymous with crap hardware and crap cellphones that would break. However, Motorola was great at the con game. They suckered Google into buying them, and then Google unloaded the Motorola unit at an $8 billion loss to Lenovo, probably for parts.

But whatever you feel about Apple, do not blame IBM. Motorola was the one holding back Apple.

Submission + - Germany's glut of electricity causing prices to plummet

AmiMoJo writes: Germany is headed for its biggest electricity glut since 2011 as new coal-fired plants start and generation of wind and solar energy increases, weighing on power prices that have already dropped for three years. From December capacity will be at 117% of peak demand. The benchmark German electricity contract has slumped 36% since the end of 2010.

“The new plants will run at current prices, but they won’t cover their costs” said Ricardo Klimaschka, a power trader at Energieunion GmbH. Lower prices “leave a trail of blood in our balance sheet” according to Bernhard Guenther, CFO at RWE, Germany’s biggest power producer. Wind and solar’s share of installed German power capacity will rise to 42% by next year from 30% in 2010. The share of hard coal and lignite plant capacity will drop to 28% from 32%.

Submission + - Epic Fail: World Cup Security Team Accidentally Reveals Internal Wi-Fi Password (ibtimes.co.uk)

concertina226 writes: Israel-based security firm RISCO Group are clearly very proud of their good work in securing the World Cup, which includes monitoring and maintaining hundreds of wirelessly-connected CCTV security cameras dotted all over the 41,000-seat Arena Pantanal football stadium in Cuiaba, Brazil.

So proud, in fact, that they have made a huge faux pas this week by posting a photo of Luiz Cravo Dorea, head of international cooperation at the Brazil Federal Police, standing right in the middle of the World Cup's main command and control security centre.

Clearly visible in the picture are a bank of computer monitors showing the security centre's Wi-Fi SSID and password, as well as a secret internal email address used to communicate with some Brazilian government agency.

Submission + - Neandertals ate their veggies, their feces reveal (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: Scientists excavating an archaeological site in southern Spain have finally gotten the real poop on Neandertals, finding that the Caveman Diet for these quintessential carnivores included substantial helpings of vegetables. Using the oldest published samples of human fecal matter, archaeologists have found the first direct evidence that Neandertals in Europe cooked and ate plants about 50,000 years ago.

Comment Can't fix the user (Score 1) 205

People will run malware for pennies.

The programmers, sysadmins, and netadmins can only do so much. If you completely lock them down, the users can't do their jobs effectively and/or whine and complain and not buy your software or use your service.

People do pay more for bulletproof software and systems, but most people aren't buying airliners.

Comment Driverless cars prevent more deaths and cheaper (Score 4, Insightful) 501

$160 million per mile, to prevent an average of 50-60 tornado deaths per year?

1) Build 1000 miles? Only $160 billion? Is that cost of labor alone? What about the cost of land?
2) Build just for cities? Which cities?
3) How does a city afford even 1 mile of wall?

We can drop nukes in tornadoes too for much less, not that I'm advocating that either.

Just last year, there were 32,850 vehicle fatalities in the good ol' USofA.

Driverless cars would've prevented 99% of the crashes. Let's concentrate on rolling those out first and soon.

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