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Comment Re:Houston Has Similar Plans (Score 5, Informative) 456

A real "nerd" would recognize that the distinction between city and town is essentially a nebulous one, and do more research to determine what the distinction would be before calling something an "elementary mistake" or labeling people they don't know a "sensationalist manipulator".

For example, in the US, the designation of "city" is controlled by state laws, and as such is determined by any of a number of factors, such as type of government or incorporation status of the community. Vermont has nine cities, the smallest of which has fewer than 3000 people.

Comment Well, it paid off...she has a job now (Score 4, Informative) 1251

Just found this article in which the "Ski Channel" is going to offer her a job:

"Either Ms Thompson is a cunning out of the box thinker and we want her," said Bellamy, "or she isn't, and her position would not last long. Either way, the law suit would no longer be clogging up the courts because there are now no damages."

Comment Re:Let it die. (Score 1) 554

- destruction of diversity in radio broadcasting (something the music industry ironically pushed for) via the death of media ownership regulations mid-'90s

Wrong. Radio hardly has any influence on what music people listen to these days.

I'm not sure that's true -- I actually think the ownership regulations have affected the music being produced. I look at it this way: after the Telecommuncations Act of 1996, companies like ClearChannel now could own stations across the country. In order to lower their costs, they would program all stations of a certain genre out of a central location. Hence, in order to get heard on a ClearChannel station, you can't appeal to local tastes and rely on a good set of customers in just, say, the Southeast markets; instead the music needed to be something that would appeal from Albany to Abilene to Anchorage. When a record company is aiming for as wide a market as possible, they're going to end up going for simpler melodies and sounds to avoid turning people off.

So, in order to get airtime across the country, you're going to tend to push rather pedestrian music. I think this is also why record companies have started pushing fewer artists in the last decade -- it's just not cost-effective to do more variety when every single artist needs to be marketed nationwide.

It all stems from the radio ownership rules. Even if radio no longer influences tastes directly (which might actually just be a case of the tail wagging the dog), it doesn't mean it doesn't have an influence on what's being produced.

Comment Re:Damn! What a shame! (Score 2, Insightful) 834

They do use the digital. Believe me, they're watching the numbers for iTunes, Hulu, and DVRs. And if those numbers are strong, they can help (signs are that they helped Joss make his case for Dollhouse). But fundamentally, Internet and DVRs don't bring the ad revenue, and that's where the network's bread is buttered.

Comment Re:I[t]'ll be back.. (Score 4, Insightful) 834

They gave Dollhouse another season because although the people watching the show live were pretty low, the number of people watching the show on DVR, iTunes, and Hulu were big and kept growing. More importantly, Joss convinced them that he could do the show for less money, and had an episode that he'd basically put together for free to seal the deal.

Everyone says it's because Firefly turned out to be huge after the fact, but I doubt that would have swung the guys at Fox if they weren't able to see a real increase in the bottom line.

Comment Re:Google Maps to calculate costs (Score 2, Insightful) 1137

The amount you pay in state and federal taxes isn't going to change based on which commuting option you take. So, they're treating it as a sunk cost in that comparison, which seems reasonable.

Your point about the cost of owning and maintaining the car would be a better one, but if I recall correctly, Google's cost values are based on allowable tax deductions (and as such are probably already on the low side).

Comment Re:Why all the fuss? (Score 1) 264

I considered that as well when I was looking at the new shuffle specs. Unfortunately, a "short dongle", by its nature, forces the controls to be near the player body. If you're going to force that aspect of the design, you might as well put the controls on the player itself.

Apple clearly thought that the controls needed to be higher up on the body, closer to the user's head, and let that drive several decisions you disagree with.

Comment Re:About time (Score 2, Insightful) 425

The DOW was up 4000 pts from swearing in to when it was evident that Obama was going to win.

Not sure how you come up with those figures. A quick check of the Dow on January 19, 2001 shows that it closed at 10,587. The Dow's never been 4000 points higher than that -- the high point was October 2007. I'd venture you didn't think it was evident that Obama was going to win back then.

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