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Comment Re:When will we... (Score 2) 266

Jail isn't going to do any good unless you put the whole agency in jail.

I don't know. You take few people who thought that their rule breaking would only get "the agency" as a whole in trouble and put those people in jail and some of the ones left over might start to take the rules more seriously.

Comment Re:Expensive and irrelevant - don't think so (Score 1) 213

I let my IEEE membership lapse when I got tired of feeling like no matter how many sub-memberships I had, I almost never had access to the journal articles I wanted. "Oh, you're a member of the Signal Processing Society. You'd need to be a member of the Society of Signal Processing (Splitters!) to get that article." It was starting to feel like this.

Comment Re:Price of using scientists as political pawns (Score 5, Insightful) 342

OK, one more time. Can you state your position clearly? Because the best I can read is something like this:

Congress wanted to stimulate green technology growth so it approved a bunch of loans and had the DOE administer them. The DOE did so, losing money on some ventures (but far less than Congress allocated for expected losses on a program that wasn't supposed to be profitable) and ending up with something like 3% of their portfolio in failed ventures. Therefore, we should defund the science work that the DOE does.

There's a jump in there somewhere that I'm not fully following. I mean, I missed the part where the American way of life was destroyed, industries collapsed, and cats and dogs began to live together. But even if that was the case, why are we gutting the science funding again?

Comment Re:Price of using scientists as political pawns (Score 5, Interesting) 342

No, I'm saying you used a scientific organization as a puppet for a political program that hurt a lot of people and is in the process of destroying industries, communities, and ways of life.

How, specifically? Fundamentally, is the DOE doing bad research? Are the results wrong? Or is good research simply being used to support political ends that you disagree with?

If I ask an expert if X is true and then use his answer to support my position, does that make him a "puppet" that my enemies should attack?

Comment Re:Price of using scientists as political pawns (Score 5, Insightful) 342

I'm not clear on the claim here. It seems to be, "You guys are using facts to support a position the other guys disagree with, so don't be surprised when they start directly attacking facts and the gathering of facts." I agree that this is typically what happens. I'm not so sure that it's fair to say that both sides are doing equally bad things when it happens, though.

Comment Re:I'm confused... (Score 1) 390

If Netflix split its traffic among a bunch of Tier 1 providers, Verizon would still end up in the same situation. The same number of bytes would be going through the core of its network, and it would have to buy the same amount of hardware at the edge of its network to handle the incoming data. Verizon would enjoy no hardware or overhead savings from that arrangement just as it incurs no extra cost from it all coming from one place. The only difference is which ports get plugged into which cards. The bottom line is that Verizon downloads more than it uploads to all carriers everywhere and no amount of accounting will change that.

If Netflix split across multiple carriers, it would make it harder for Verizon to demand payment, though. It's easy to isolate one juicy target's data and sell them "access" to your customers if that customer's data all comes through one port set of ports that you can just leave unmaintained. If Netflix balanced its load across a bunch of providers, the only way Verizon could do that is to explicitly throttle or drop Netflix packets. But then it would be obvious what was really happening. Verizon doesn't have a problem with Netflix. Verizon doesn't have a problem with unbalanced traffic at all. Unbalanced traffic is part of Verizon's nature. Verizon is just trying to push its own costs off to other providers, unless we're to believe that the whole Internet should pay Verizon for the privilege of connecting to Verizon.

Comment Re:I'm confused... (Score 1) 390

I think you are demonstrating that Netflix breaks the typical peering business arrangements between transit carriers. This is exactly the issue that Verizon and other big ISPs are trying to force.

I don't think it's Netflix that is breaking the business model, though. The Internet used to be more symmetrical when it was academic institutions and government, but that's just not what the Internet looks like anymore. Now it's largely companies with servers sending data to consumers who want data. The old model requiring symmetry just isn't going to hold, Netflix or not. Netflix is an easy target because they're the biggest, but without Netflix, other providers would take their place and provide that content. The "source" would diffuse across more Tier 1 providers, but the destination bottleneck would remain the same. Maybe that would be better because it would require that ISPs realize that the problem has nothing to do with Netflix and everything to do with how humans are now using the Internet (and how ISPs encourage them to use it!).

Further, the symmetrical model likely never held for consumer ISPs. Since AOL was the Internet for most people, end consumers have generally downloaded more data than they've uploaded. Consumer ISPs who are shocked to find that their traffic only goes mostly in one direction aren't going to find a remedy that balances traffic, and pretending that data costs more to push bits uphill than downhill isn't going to change that. It makes no more sense than charging more for 1s than 0s and having the guy who sent extra 1s pay the difference every quarter. The only reasonable long term solution is for each provider to charge their own customers for the cost of the infrastructure they use regardless of which direction the bits flow.

They will be forced to either extract money either directly or indirectly from Netflix or from their end-users. They obviously prefer the former and I agree with them as Netflix is the one most profiting from the massive load that they are causing.

I think this is where we disagree. I think that Netflix and Netlfix viewers are both profiting roughly equally from the arrangement and they each pay their own provider for access to a mutually beneficial link. Netflix isn't imposing data on anybody any more than Netflix customers are an imposition on L3. The difference between L3 and Verizon is willing to charge its customers to cover its costs and Verizon would prefer to have somebody else's customers cover theirs. That's an understandable desire, but not a reasonable one.

Comment Re:I'm confused... (Score 1) 390

Basically, Netflix pays L3 a HUGE amount of money for their access and L3 wants their peer networks to upgrade and continuously carry this huge, unbalanced load without the downstream networks seeing one red cent of that money.

Let's imagine that video streaming was totally symmetrical and Verizon customers sent a byte to Netflix for every byte they downloaded. Would that reduce the cost to Verizon and suddenly make no cost peering equitable again?

Comment Re:I'm confused... (Score 1) 390

Let's say Netflix continues growing by leaps and bounds and absolutely dominates as the source of traffic on the Internet, even more so than it already does. L3 gets paid more and more by Netflix for their access bandwidth while Verizon gets absolutely nothing extra but is required to carry more and more load from L3. That can't work or will require last mile providers to continually raise their prices to upgrade their networks due to Netflix.

That sounds like a sensible model to me. L3 incurs extra costs from Netflix and passes those costs on to Netflix. Verizon incurs extra costs from its customers and passes those costs on to its customers. There seems to be good symmetry there. The source of this problem seems to stem from the idea that all networks need to be balanced all the time. Sometimes traffic flows just one way and that's OK as long as the people who want that traffic transferred pay for it.

I wouldn't have had a problem with Verizon working out a deal with Netflix if it could have been done minus the extortion tactics. Cutting out the middle man can almost always benefit both parties. Unfortunately, when you allow extortion to succeed, you end up with more extortion down the road. I'm especially sensitive to it with monopoly providers like consumer broadband ISPs in the US. If you let a natural monopoly forget that it should be curteous and fair because it should be grateful for its sweet monopoly gig, things can get out of hand fast. If broadband was a truly competitive market, I'd say, "Hey, let them fight it out. Verizon will figure out who they work for." But Verizon has clearly gotten to the point where customers are taken for granted and they can be treated like product instead.

Comment Re:I disagree (Score 1) 390

Why? It seems like both parties on both ends of the wire want those bits to be sent. I don't see how the direction of data flow is a useful metric at all. If we suddenly reversed everything and watching videos required that customers upload massive amounts of data to Netflix instead of downloading it, would the cost to Verizon suddenly drop and the cost to L3 suddenly skyrocket? Does the direction of data flow thing hold all the way to the endpoint? Should Verizon be paying its end users for the "right" to dump data they requested into their houses?

Comment Re:They hate our freedom (Score 1) 404

That's why I'm saying that SF Park should simply go back to using its sensors and letting the price float. That will put this app out of business and make the whole point moot. Everything starts to function optimally and there's no need for us to set up police stings to ensure that nobody is selling spaces. Setting the price equal to a sensible market price does away with the secondary market entirely.

I can see other cities getting upset over this, but SF has the tools to stop it cold. They have the most advanced parking metering system in the country. If they don't use it properly, that's a policy problem.

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