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Comment Re:Do the same with a handful of transistors (Score 1) 96

Why do you need electronics at all?

All you need to brew alcohol is watertight container of moderate size, a sugar-rich solution, and a teaspoon or two of yeast. People were doing it for thousands of years. There's even some evidence to suggest that the neolithic transition to sedentary farming was motivated by the desire to have a large surplus of grains available to ferment.

Comment Re:So before he returned the printer ... (Score 1) 632

What if you could print yourself a new toilet, kitchen appliance, ... would people buy them from shops ?

It's called a post-scarcity economy. We're already seeing the effects in the digital space. And, as with digital copying, the established players are going to fight it tooth and nail.

I suspect it won't be a real problem for quite some time, because the printer manufacturers know on which side their bread is buttered. Consumable costs will be kept high. Printing at home is still more expensive than going to a print shop. It costs me around $3 to $5 in consumables to print a 11x14 photo on my (professional grade) photo printer. I can get a better quality print for less than half the cost, including shipping, by sending it to a print shop. The same applies to regular printing, especially in bulk. Color Inkjet printing costs upwards of $.25/page. B&W Laser printing is around $.10/page. A print shop will do better work for a fraction of that.

Comment Re:even more savings (Score 4, Insightful) 424

this is minutiae.....

3.8W is hardly a minute amount of power. If I did my math right, it's approximately the amount of power it takes to lift a full soda can (~390g) 1 meter in 1 second.

Let's say each Google query takes 10 seconds of viewing time, so you could save 38 watt-seconds per query by going black. Multiply this by 3 Billion queries per day, times 365 days/year. That's 12GWh (to 2 significant figures) of electricity that could be saved annually by changing a couple lines of code.

Power costs around $0.10/KWh. I don't consider $1.2M/year to be a minute amount of money.

Comment Re:Big Brother? (Score 1) 628

It is not a lie. It is a fact of life that you disagree with based on your interpretation of The Constitution. Under current law (State laws, btw), driving is a privilege.

The fact remains that the current law is incompatible with the explicit text, not to mention the spirit, of the Constitution. The Fugitive Slave Act was once "current law". The Alien and Sedition act was once "current law". The Alien Enemies Act and Executive Order 9066 were once "current law". None were ever right, all of them are a stain on our national honor.

The fact that we've surrendered our RIGHT to travel freely on public highways using normal and customary conveyances without a peep is just pathetic. It's going to remain a "privilege" as long as PEOPLE LIKE YOU keep believing the LIE.

Comment Re:Down With Big Brother (Score 1) 628

anyways, the book was about information control. The internet has made Big Brother impossible.

No, the book was about total control of everything. Information control was only part of it.

Why mandate a telescreen in every room when you can get people to BUY the latest, greatest telescreen as a status symbol and carry it around with them everywhere they go? Why bother suppressing the truth when half the proles would rather believe lies that pander to their ignorance, and the other half are too distracted by mindless entertainment to care?

Huxley was much closer to the truth than Orwell.

Comment Re:Big Brother? (Score 4, Informative) 628

The use of a motor vehicle is a privilege, not a right,

This oft-repeated lie needs to be taken out and shot (along with the people who repeat it)

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

There is no enumerated right to have children. Using the same logic, the conclusion is that having children is a privilege that can be revoked at the Government's whim.

Would the founding fathers have said that riding a horse a privilege? Or a bicycle? Under what rational does using mechanical power instead of muscle power to propel it transform a mode of travel from a right to a privilege?

Comment Re:Big Brother? (Score 1) 628

Big deal.

It isn't, until the law is subjected to a Scalia-esque re-definition of what "retrieved" means. I'll wager a weeks pay he (or Uncle Thomas or Dread Justice Roberts) could come up with some tortured rationale why letting the cops scan the contents of the device doesn't actually constitute "retrieval".

EG in Scalia-ese:
Cops patting you down = not a "search"
Sex offender registry = not a "punishment"
Retroactive copyright extension = not "ex-post-facto"

Comment Re:Missing the point (Score 1) 188

You call that "cloud", the rest of us call that a data center. The only part that has changed is the marketing.

You can't see the forest for the trees.

Lots has changed besides marketing: visualization, elasticity, transparency, etc.

Taken alone, no single factor is revolutionary... it's all evolutionary improvements of time-tested concepts. Put them all together at a never-before seen price point and the effect is revolutionary. The whole is more than the sum of it's parts.

Comment Re:Naive, because most investors (especially VCs). (Score 1) 438

If you're going to start out our relationship with crap like that, why should I bother?

Because that's how the game is played. You don't get dealt into the game until you ante up.

Again, where is the consideration for me?

The consideration is that you're being invited to play with the big boys. Either make a show of good faith and get dealt in or go away and play with yourself.

Comment Re:FORTRAN? (Score 2) 204

The problem is that "modern computer langauges" are designed by PhD's in computer science who know what they learned in grad school, which is heavy on the "delegates? Anonymous functions? Closures? Reflection" axis of desiderata and pffs away questions of fast numerical support with "link to C"---mostly because something like that wouldn't be seen as New And Cool by tenure committees.

Citation needed. Looking at the modern language landscape, what I see is are languages that were:
a) created by lone hackers looking to scratch a personal itch (EG: Perl, Ruby)
b) created internally by a corporation to solve an otherwise intractable engineering problem (EG: C, Erlang)
c) created by corporations looking to sell developer seats and/or create vendor lock-in (EG: Java, Visual *, *.net)

Languages designed primarily as academic exercises / thesis projects have historically had very small user bases outside of academia, with a few exceptions.

Anonymous functions, closures, reflection, etc are not esoteric Ivory Tower language features that are important because they're "cool" -- they're important because they're essential for efficient metaprogramming and higher order programming.

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