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Comment Introducing "advanced" concepts made it easier for (Score 2) 231

For me, having been introduced to the basic idea of a "hard" concept made it a lot easier when the subject was taught in school ten years later. For example, basic cooking introduced me to a lot of math and a little chemistry. At age five, making lemonade was age-appropriate. It made sense that to make half as much lemonade, we'd use half as many lemons. (Ratios). Gee, we used one cup of sugar to make a big jug of lemonade, how much sugar should we use to make half as much? In school, fractions were easy for me - as easy as making lemonade, which I'd been doing for years.

Comment Maker niche. 3D printer in the store, Pi. xMas RC (Score 5, Interesting) 423

The hobbyist niche didn't fully support them in the old days either, with something like 80% of retail revenue coming at Christmas time and Radio Shack selling a ton of RC toys and such. Other times of the year, non-geeks looking for cables, adapters, etc. were a major market for them. Their slogan "you've got questions, we've got answers" was accurate - their employees got raises for passing tests in various fields, so they would have the answer. Any average Joe could come in saying "I want to hook both my DVD player and my game console to two TVs ..." and the Radio Shack employees would steer them to the products they needed, cable, A/B switches, etc.

For the niche that defined the brand, that's still there, it's just shifted a little bit. The same guys, like me, are still interested in similar stuff. It's just shifted from ie short-wave radio to 3D printing. If each Radio Shack location (or some of them) had a 3D printer in the store, that would bring traffic from the same people who used to buy resistors and antennas there. We're not building homebrew computers anymore, but we sure might want some servos to hook to our Raspberry Pi.

Video game stores aren't still trying to sell Atari 2600 games, but they haven't changed too much - they are just selling the new games. Radio Shack could do the same. Not by selling (only) the same resistors they sold 30 years ago, but by adding what today's geeks want, stuff for rPi and microcontroller systems, and whatever else is most popular on

Comment IF, but most are ~ half the legal weight (Score 1) 242

> if you're running into legal weight limits

If legal weight limits were the problem, yes. Most of the time, they aren't. More often, a typical truck is carrying about half it's legal cargo weight.

Let's look at the case of running into the weight limit, though. That may be true 10% of the time. Suppose one truck is carrying bottled water or something else heavy. It'll have about 50,000 pounds of cargo. The other nine trucks aren't at their limit.
Spending $ million X 10 = $40 million more on those trucks could conceivably increase their cargo by 4,000 pounds. That's a ten thousand dollars a pound. Noone is dumb enough to spend $10,000 per pound, except maybe the US federal government.

Comment So what? and false (Score 1) 427

Let's pretend that's true. Let's pretend most families are like that. They aren't, but let's pretend you're right.

Bob works for me, and he puts in 60 hours / week when needed, 50 hours average. His wife, Sally, works for a competing company, you. She leaves at 3:00 to pick up the kid from school. Are you going to pay Sally as much as I pay Bob, because she has a good excuse? As your competition, I sure hope so because you'll go broke that way. Bob, working those long hours, produces twice as much.

You know what's funny? In that "traditional family" where mom takes care of the house and kids, they don't even CARE if both paychecks are the same. They go into the couple's bank account anyway , so Sally and Bob are perfectly happy if "Bob's" paycheck is three times the size of "Sally's" - either way, it's THEIR money.

Comment govt keeps nationalizing, denationalizing railroad (Score 1) 242

The other day someone posted a link to a Wikipedia listing of nationalization and denationalization of various industries in the US. Most of it had to do with railroads. I don't know about other states, but here in Texas the railroad commissioner is considered the third most powerful government office. It's a stepping stone to the governor's office.

I'd be hesitant to run a railroad, or have a large enterprise rely on the railroad, knowing that the government might decide to take it over tomorrow, or completely rewrite all of the rules because it'll help his gubernatorial campaign.

Comment 2,500L @ $1/L vs. $millions. Liberal math. (Score 0) 242

Aerodynamic changes may make sense. Carbon fiber, no.

According to your estimate, the carbon fiber might save 2,500 liters per year. At $1 per liter, that's $2,500. You think it makes sense to spend MILLIONS in order to save thousands. Typical liberal math.

Do you have any idea how many starving children could be fed with four million dollars? Fuck why don't you left wing freaks ever engage your brains.

Comment shoulder to shoulder? My homework (Score 1) 137

I could do my own homework on this since I don't know what you're talking about, but I probably won't, so I'll just ask.

By "shoulder to shoulder" do you mean physically, that the two people were at the same event? That is, standing near each other in the same way that the executioner stands next to the condemned? The same way that Bush Jr. physically stood shoulder to shoulder with Obama?

Comment Chestnuts don't kill you and humans screw up (Score 1) 168

The difference between restoring chestnuts vs assorted prehistoric animals is that chestnuts don't kill you. A mammoth may very well kill you.

Another argument is that we humans tend to mess up nature. Killer bees come to mind. We may think that what we're doing is okay, then it turns out that it was a really bad idea. Consider for example all of the invasive species we've brought from other continents. We should be very, very careful about messing around with mother nature. She can be a bad ass bitch.

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The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness. -- John Muir