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Comment Re:Last question in summary is very insightful (Score 4, Interesting) 586

The hope for humanity would be for a simple and money-optional society. Everyone "gets" the basics (food, shelter, simple clothes, education, healthcare, public transportation, maybe a computer with internet access) with no requirement to contribute anything to society. If they want anything more than that (iPod, trip to Disney Land, a car, a house with front yard, clothes other than a solid color t shirt) they will need to make money, and for that they will have to work in one of the few jobs available. These jobs would be almost entirely academic (research will always be necessary), service, or cultural in nature. People would work until they could afford whatever luxuries they want, and then could opt to go back to having free time to explore their own desires/ambition. Without the requirement to work, working conditions would automatically improve, as companies would no longer be able to keep workers if "doing nothing" is better than the job they are offering.

That is possible today actually, if we change the welfare system from something that gives out money to something that only provided necessities, and not money. Instead of farm subsidies, flat out buy the food.

This system would only work if the "public option" for things that was held to a standard that anyone would be willing to accept. What passes for public housing now does not qualify, but what passes for dorms / cafeterias at a public college would be a start.

Comment Re:André Gorz (Score 1) 586

He was not talking about self-serve. There are machines which, upon the appropriate drink being keyed into the register, select the cup and fill it to the appropriate height (and they do properly compensate for ice/no ice/small amount of ice). While self-serve saves the same amount of employee labor, it has the unfortunate side effect of allowing easy access to free refills. While McD's corporate policy is free refills the likelihood of someone waiting on line with an empty cup just for the refill is much lower than someone getting up to refill at their leisure from a self-serve fountain, thus the existence of these machines.

Comment Re:Good and Bad (Score 1) 205

There will always be extremists, but what is worse is those who sympathize with them - they are the ones who rally behind the cause without knowing any facts and make progress politically unpopular. Such people should be made to watch the Star Trek DS9 episode Paradise (the WP description doesn't do it justice, watch it on Amazon Prime if you can)... While the "leader" in that story is not anti-progress for religious reasons or out of any irrational fear (the two common causes for the mindset), I think divorcing the philosophy from those reasons actually makes the story more effective. It is a nice splash of cold water for anyone who expresses "anti-progress" attitudes as it focuses on the consequences of a "100% back to nature" attitude.

Comment Re:How is this gasping news (Score 2) 443

5th? 15th? 17th? If that's true, then I would agree with you... I just didn't know to what extent you expected them to be punished.

Simple: Permanent revocation of license. If that requires the drunk (former) driver to relocate to a public housing development in an urban area while changing to basic retail/food service level employment, then so be it. A perk would be they would now be within walking distance of bars.

Comment Re:Therewhile ... (Score 1) 322

Here in the US, trains slow down for at-grade crossings to 30 kph.

I don't know what crazy lines you're riding but the only time that is done is if it is an unprotected crossing (no gates or flashing lights). I can only conclude your US rail experience is from tourist railroads.

Meanwhile, in upstate NY trains regularly go 110MPH through crossings (not my video)...

Comment Re:What ranges are these? (Score 1) 304

Travelling is written with two Ls in British English.

Not just British English: my American English spelling book back in (3rd?) grade specifically mentioned that for this "set" of words (including cancelling/cancelled) double "l" was acceptable. Since it looked and felt better than single "l", I chose it as my preferred method of spelling. Until some common US English spell checkers started flagging it as a misspelling, no one seemed to ever have any problem with it.

Security

Submission + - IT Pros Get Rowdiest At Company Holiday Parties? (channelweb.co.uk)

ericatcw writes: According to ChannelWeb UK, IT guys (and gals) are the most likely "to embarrass themselves" at Christmas and holiday parties this season. Nearly 40% of the 2,000 workers surveyed by Avaya — admittedly, in the UK — admitted to drinking too much while 27% said they "snogged" (kissed) their boss during holiday gatherings.
Power

Submission + - Is it worth investing in a high-efficiency power supply? (extremetech.com)

MrSeb writes: "If you’ve gone shopping for a power supply any time over the last few years, you’ve probably noticed the explosive proliferation of various 80 Plus ratings. As initially conceived, an 80 Plus certification was a way for PSU manufacturers to validate that their power supply units were at least 80% efficient at 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100% of full load. In the pre-80 Plus days, PSU prices normally clustered around a given wattage output. The advent of the various 80 Plus levels has created a second variable that can have a significant impact on unit price. This leads us to three important questions: How much power can you save by moving to a higher-efficiency supply, what’s the premium of doing so, and how long does it take to make back your initial investment? ExtremeTech investigates."

Submission + - 19 yr hacker reveals how the results of a state election in Brazil was altered (google.com)

Bruno Cassol writes: "Accompanied by an expert in data transmission and a police chief, a young 19 year old hacker showed how — through illegal and privileged access to the intranet used to transfer election results — intercepted data and modified results benefiting candidates over others. All without anything being officially detected."
The Military

Submission + - Why Iron Dome Might Only Work For Israel (thediplomat.com) 1

An anonymous reader writes: Many this week have declared Israel's American financed Iron Dome rocket defense system a success. Some have even gone so far to declare it a vindication of Ronald Reagen's 1980's Star Wars missile defense system. Pundits have even gone so far to assume the system could be sold to other nations. However, the Iron Dome may not be the game changer many are making it out to be.

Taking out unsophisticated rockets is quite different than advanced missiles: "...the technical and strategic challenges of shooting down ballistic missiles differ considerably from those of shooting down unguided rockets. BMD shares with rocket defense some common technological ground; both require fast reaction time and impressive sensor capabilities, and the Iron Dome project has benefited from technical work on missile defense. However, ballistic missiles in flight behave differently from unguided, sub-atmospheric rockets."

Power

Submission + - LA Metro to Harvest Energy From Subway Trains (vyconenergy.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Today the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority awarded VYCON Energy with a $3.6 million contract to install a flywheel energy recovery system at the Red Line Westlake/MacArthur Park subway station. The system will harness kinetic energy from braking trains then use the stored energy to help trains accelerate.

Comment Re:"Better yet, leave it to the private sector." (Score 1) 458

Almost all of the MTA's services are back to normal, with a few minor branches being bussed. Even if it is a shuttle bus public transit is still the most viable option.

However I agree that the NJ railroads are still unbelievably fucked. It's bad enough that they've had to borrow buses from neighboring states so I would agree that the rules are a bit different there - however this article was about NY. In fact the AG's plan might screw up NJ even more, now people who might have wanted to drive some upstate NY gas (no shortage) down to NJ residents and sell it at $20/gallon won't be allowed to.

Comment Re:"Better yet, leave it to the private sector." (Score 5, Insightful) 458

or for individuals to sell generators that they had bought before the storm at double their retail value.

By making that illegal it becomes better for someone who has an extra generator to simply not sell it. While the generator would be doing no one any good, it is still available to the person holding it in case he needs it - to him the $700 generator is worth $1400 (the risk of needing it and not having it is worth $700 to him) but by not being allowed to sell it at that price, he would be taking a perceived loss for no reason. I fail to see how this is better than allowing supply/demand to take over.

As for gas, keep in mind this is the NY metro area. Very few people actually *need* gas. If the prices at the stations were allowed to rise to $10, people who do need the gas would be able to get it, and people who don't would take the bus/railroad/subway. Right now, the commodity being sacrificed is time: people who have more time on their hands and can sit on a line for 5 hours are better able to get gas than those working 3 jobs. How is that right?

Comment Re:Not suprising (Score 1) 42

How about mandating exactly 6 characters and requiring a number and special character?
I wish there was some place to report piss poor password schemes for banks (BBB?), no amount of my complaining has done it, not even informing them that they are strictly my "just enough to use the ATM every week" bank, and my real money is elsewhere...

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