Stupid here, thank you very much. The reason why Ballmer is wrong is the same one is the same why you are wrong:
With the "classic" device categories PC and laptop it is down to features, price and personal preference which manufacturer and form factor you choose. Virtually any X86-based 'user-facing' device can be bought with MS Windows, some come with OS X, almost none is restricted to those two. Tablets on the other hand come with a specific kind of baggage: the ecosystem that its manufacturer sold you with it. Things like Ubuntu's Nexus installer aside, once you break a certain 'surface layer' of generic usage - web browsing, gaming, watching YouTube etc. - an iPad simply is no replacement for an Android device if your requirements are only satisfied by such one, which in turn cannot replace a Windows 8 tablet if you happen to need a Windows device. (Windows RT tablets, on the other hand, could possibly be replaced even by a brick.)
Herman Kahn's On Thermonuclear War has taught me more about our social fabric than six years of study in the Humanities.
Samuel Shem's The House of God filled in the gaps Kahn left. Yes, it is pulp fiction in its most base sense. But it is, in the same base sense, true.
Neither book made me throw my plans over board and steer into a wholly different direction, but between the two of them I found a new perspective on my profession and confirmation for choices I had made.
[...] Seriously, do you really want to be pushed an update that is probably untested and just hope for the best? We're not talking AT&T or T-Mo here [...]
Well, we were just a sentence ago... Seriously, it was Samsung's official updates that drove me to CyanogenMod.
Tablets are a fad that will go the way of the netbook, and faster.
I strongly disagree:
I am just waiting for the Transformer Infinity's price to come down a bit, then I will order one, with the keyboard dock. Not as a replacement for but as a complement to my desktop and laptop. I will use it for taking notes during lectures, as a portable media player on standby duties, and - if I can get over my aversion to not having a physical book in front of my eyes - maybe for reading during commute. I will still write my thesis papers on my desktop, I will still code on my desktop, I will still game predominantly on my desktop - that is what it is designed for, after all. But that does not devalue the additional options a tablet offers me.
Ok, so first, if the crime doesn't happen, how do you know you prevented it? Maybe it just didn't happen.
You look not at one single crime but at the crime rate for a specific location and crime category. If the rate decreases after you start your prediction-based policing and the crime rate for this category does not increase in another area during the same time (interestingly this is one step proponents of public video surveillance very often happen to overlook), then your approach very likely has prevented such crimes in the targeted area.
Here in Germany every single "terrorist" put on trial since the German Autumn has been revealed to have had contact to at least one state agency, from state and federal police to the Verfassungsschutz (part of the intelligence conglomerate) to our two secret services, the Bundesnachrichtendienst (foreign intelligence) and Militärischer Abschirmdienst (domestic intelligence), including being funded, trained, "led". At the same time this happened right under the noses of all the aforementioned agencies. They cannot protect the public from three lowlives. But they can combat terrorism. Yeah, right.
In all seriousness: On the list of threats to my life, freedom and livelihood terrorism does not even make the top twenty.
Just off the top of my head.
[...] so my company can actually use firefox?
What is stopping you from doing just that?
[...] unless you host your own email server, you're relying on someone else to store your email anyway. Why not use the web interface? [...]
[...] only existed because the US made it profitable for companies to develop them [...]
Which leads me to question whether leaving the production of medications to companies is a smart idea.
Machines certainly can solve problems, store information, correlate, and play games -- but not with pleasure. -- Leo Rosten