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Comment Re:It's only half the problem... (Score 1) 620

The ones who don't want to pay even then? You really weren't going to make any money off of them anyway.

Maybe fifty to sixty years ago, Hollywood (and the RIAA for that matter) would have written off such people as losses because there just wasn't enough of them to threaten the bottom line. Then someone got the (tongue-in-cheek) brilliant idea of treating all such piracy estimates as actual losses. It was fun for a while-- the studios and publishers could then claim massive losses to avoid paying the artists and the government alike.

But since their entire business model hinges on not just this absolutely inane fiscal calculation, but also on the complete domination of the production process, the first thing they do when they start to see declining profits is to blame the Internet.

Bang, now there are corporate lawyers looking to make big bucks off of indignant and foolish executives, children, and anyone who happens to get caught in the media cartel's legal dragnet.

Comment Re:So much for build quality... (Score 2) 531

Well, the iFixit guy didn't see any other major problems (other than difficulty of replacing the LCD, but that's more of a design issue than anything), and all of the problems he cited can be solved by tightening the build process.

It's also possible that he got a unit built by a n00b. Stripped screws, forgotten ZIF locking, and too much paste are novice errors. The problem with manufacturing in China isn't that the build is consistently crappy, but that the build quality is not consistent.

Comment Re:The moral/practical lesson of this story is (Score 1) 448

I don't know what it is about the mindset of corporate Japan, but despite the quality of their goods, their attitudes toward invention and copyright often infuriate me. For example, they generally shun using OSS tools which could save them money and help them avoid vendor lock-in, but instead they'll re-invent the wheel at home, since they "can't trust stuff made by foreigners". Seriously?? Industry standard be damned, they would rather duplicate a bunch of work they don't have to, so they could sell it to gullible like-minded execs in Japan and--

Wait. A bunch of things clicked into place.

Comment Re:It's ridiculous. (Score 1) 426

I don't know about you, but modern transportation, the green revolution (cheap and abundant food) and antibiotics, to name just a few of the advances enabled by hydrocarbons, are nothing to be sneezed at.

Yeah, and if petroleum is exhausted to the point of becoming unaffordable, all of those advances will be lost unless we transition to something that doesn't rely on fossil fuels. At the very least, modern transportation as we know it (especially overseas shipping and aircraft-- there's a reason why the Pentagon is taking this seriously) will grind to a halt, and much of the cheap and abundant food we enjoy today will either become impossible to cultivate locally (no artificial fertilizer), or impossible to ship from Peru/Chile.

What's desperately needed are transition fuels for ships and aircraft, to serve as stopgaps before and when the oil crunch hits. Biodiesel works for highway-based freight in temperate climates, so we need the equivalents for heavy fuel oil and kerosene-- and we shouldn't have to sacrifice food/feedstock for it, since several algal species can generate oil on a large scale. We just haven't gotten to the point where we have a strong aquaculture.

Solar and wind energy cannot yet replace our energy needs, not even close. Even if we squeeze every last efficiency gain that we can reasonably get, it still won't be enough.

Solar energy, as current silicon photovoltaics (10-15% efficiency on a good day), can't replace fossil fuel, but they can supplement or offset some of it-- and the offset will only grow when you factor in newer tech like thin-film (20-30%), as well as economies of scale driving down the investment price.

For that matter, there's solar thermal using molten salt, which could power millions of homes and not go offline when the sun goes down. Spain's invested heavily in this, and now their solar facilities are producing practically free energy. Shame it's not offsetting their financial troubles, though. There's also waste to energy conversion and many other technologies that can chip away at the use of fossil fuels-- it's not all about solar and wind.

The point was never that one or two renewable energy techs would completely and immediately replace oil; the point is that a comprehensive strategy involving solar, wind, nuclear, geothermal, tidal, hydro, biofuel, and whatever else we can come up with would reduce our consumption of coal and oil to something more manageable. Then we can seriously think about cutting-edge technologies (like fusion) that could take us off fossil fuel, or change the process to one that's carbon-neutral.

Of course, all of this costs money up-front, and the fossil-fuel-enriched legislators are far more willing to save subsidies on coal and oil, than they are willing to ensure a more stable economy. For that matter, the average investor still thinks "energy = oil|coal"...

Comment The guy could've done some more research... (Score 2) 98

Unfortunately for Western players, Pols Voice are much more challenging to defeat without that special ability.

They're one-hit kills with a bow and arrows. Not only that, the arrow pierces through, which allows multiple kills with a single arrow-- no other monster in the game is killed this easily by that weapon. Probably not as bone-headedly easy as yelling into a microphone, but a lot easier than the author lets on.

Comment Re:All about features, not stability (Score 2) 294

Did LibreOffice get rid of the Oracle Java parts, replace them with something, or what?

The article says that LO does support Java, but you need to download it separately (licensing issues?). Certain features (database for one) require Java, but for basic Word/Excel clone stuff, you probably don't need it.

Comment Re:I think Beck has started to believe his own con (Score 1) 1276

You're on the right track-- the closest classification is probably narcissistic or something similar.

Before he was on television, he was a radio shock jock (for I believe a college radio station)-- and he wasn't much different than his persona on Fox. One of his pastimes was character assassination of a fellow radio host, making public insults of her appearance and such. He continued doing so even though coworkers have pleaded with him to stop, because his ratings were so high.

Comment Re:Intel CPUs not in the mobile space because... (Score 1) 228

Sure Intel and AMD's offerings will always be "fastest", but do you really need a Six or Eight Core 4ghz CPU costing $1000 to do a few emails, when a $7 750mhz Dual-Core MIPS will do the exact same job?

I can see i7s topping out at around a thousand, but Phenom II hex-cores shouldn't run much more than a few hundred bucks (still, a couple orders of magnitude more costly than the MIPS). Maybe you could get an AMD CPU for a grand if you're going with server chips.

Microsoft cut off the DEC Alpha, PowerPC and MIPS platforms, over 15 years ago in order for Windows NT to compete internally with Windows 95; now they're paying the price and they're going to take down with them anyone else who clings to their coat-tails.

Doubtless they saw the writing on the wall a couple of years earlier than you have, because they wouldn't announce an architecture shift (ARM) unless they were committed to it. This means they'll basically be standing still (sustained by enterprise users and desktop gamers) while Android and iOS eat their lunch in the tablet space.

Of course, Nokia could come out with a badass WP7 tablet and make it a 3-player market. Unfortunately, from what I'm seeing/hearing from Nokia, they're nowhere near ready to go to market.

Comment Re:Looking for Job (Score 1) 601

Intel is the exception, not the rule. To rephrase GP's post, how often, for a company that Microsoft isn't dependent upon to retain control of the desktop and enterprise, is partnering with Microsoft the smartest thing they've done?

SCO? They're on life support.
Novell? They're on the chopping block.
Those are just the high-profile failures. I'm sure there are several, smaller examples of how companies have failed miserably as a result of joining with Microsoft.

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