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Comment /dev/null (Score 1) 45

Concerned taxpaying patriot citizens should opt in to helping the NSA on a volunteer basis.

NSA should provide a spec for device driver writers to make alternative null devices, such that machines which opt to use this driver, anything written to the null device would be automatically sent to NSA. Then all software could be changed to divert a copy of all streams to the null device. For people who don't opt in, there's no privacy risk. For concerned taxpaying patriots who wish to share with NSA, they just run the new null device. For performance-nut patriots, you could have a special hardware null device to reduce the load on your machine and its own network connection. And for performance-nut privacy-nuts, your hardware null device would .. um .. well, certainly be faster than our lame software-emulated null devices.

And of course, if you're a real performance nut, then whether you're a patriot or an al Qaida sympathizer, you have several hardware null devices, striped.

Comment Re:So what is the problem? (Score 1) 282

The reason a phone should be different, is that it is technologically and functionally different. A wallet, cash, watch, TV(*) etc do not broadcast. Those things do not "write" to the world, saying "here I am." Phones do.

(*) Well, ok, you're old TV. Actually, I don't think it would be insane for us to have different expectations about next-gen TVs. Well, I mean, yes, it's insane that they'll talk to the world, but given the fact that they will, we ought to expect them to be recoverable. Sanity within the insanity. ;-)

Comment Re:Seems like overkill (Score 1) 307

Having been born in Detroit 54 years ago, I'll tell you that the city's troubles revolve around many issues that are completely unrelated to what you're seeing in other locations in China or elsewhere. Detroit, the entire Metro area, is one of the most segregated (if not the most) city in the world, with the highest per capita murder rate in the country. The entire economy revolved around the production of vehicles. So, with the outsourcing of parts, and eventually entire plants, to other countries, you end up with where Detroit and Flint are today.

You pointed to the rise and fall of the Japanese economy. When you have cheap labor, it's all fine until everyone starts moving up in pay. Japan lost business to Korea, Philippines, Malaysia, etc. The same thing happened with Korea when I lived there in the mid-80s to early 90s. The average pay increased dramatically, making them less competitive with other countries.

Comment Re:Finally looks exactly like Chrome (Score 1) 250

The only thing they did right.. [some UI thing]

No. Let's not forget Chrome's real claim to fame: it's multi-process. Different web pages don't need to be browsed in the same process. Give 'em some credit for that. Plenty of browsers still do the wrong thing here, Firefox being one of them.

Comment Re:Finally looks exactly like Chrome (Score 3, Informative) 250

Safari 6 has a bug like that. I think Safari is overall a fine browser, and I use to be very happy to use it as an alternative to Firefox's slow pokey waitiness. But it has a one-two combination of Amazing Stupidity, which make it virtually unusable for me.

1) It removes the protocol from the URL bar, so that entering (or clicking a link to) "http://example" becomes "example" in the URL bar. That's unnecessary and could never possibly be useful, but nevertheless, alone it would be mostly harmless.

2) It asks some search engine what the things in the URL bar mean, if you don't enter a protocol. That's unnecessary and not very useful, but alone it would be mostly harmless.

Together, they add up to lethal unusability.

If I go to "http://example?foo=bar1" then it works. But if I then I change bar1 to bar2 and hit enter, it goes to something like ""

Stupid, stupid, stupid. (And Safari 4 didn't have this bug. Never tried 5.) This one thing, switched me to Chrome at work. And it discourages firing up Safari to test things. Guess what that means for run-of-the-mill users. I really hope someone at Apple got fired over this staggering incompetence. If not, then in a few years, Mac OS will be about as useful as iOS, i.e. not at all.

Comment Re:More regulation = less choices (Score 1) 214

The companies who competed with Amazon, said they did. If I shop at Store X to pay $n, whereas the same item at store Y costs me $n*1.1, store Y's assertion that they have a .1 tax rate, really isn't something they made up, pulled out of their ass. You might be right in saying they don't "pay" the .1 tax, but oh, it's there and it matters in a major way as a market force. It's just as if they were paying it.

Comment Re:doesn't work (Score 1) 597

Using a car analogy, isn't this really the difference between how Porsche upgrades the 911 series every year, and how other auto companies come out with completely new models? Doesn't Agile work best when you can make multiple deliveries, instead of doing a complete ground up design each time?

Please excuse my ignorance. My software development work ended several years ago, when I was just starting to read about Extreme. Now I drive schedules and spreadsheets.

Comment Re:What are they trying to achieve? (Score 3, Interesting) 244

Please name any other industry where you feel you have a right to essentially make an ultimatum: "change things to suit my whims or I won't buy your product?"

All of them. There are some exceptions with utilities (e.g. local water company) but even those are less exceptional than the video industry thinks they are.

Comment Re:"I'm placing you in cuffs for your own safety" (Score 1) 206

Have you considered that many of these drones are much less expensive than their manned counterparts? Have you considered that w/o a human onboard, the payload ability increases dramatically? Have you considered that while you may not like some of the ongoing military actions, that some are actually worth fighting, or are you just letting your anti-military bias get the best of you? Not all UAVs are built to kill people. Sure there's plenty of room to cut the military budgets, and we should start by listening to the military when they wish to cancel a program, while some jackass Congressman continues to try to fund it.

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