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Comment would launch a 20yr sat for 1/10th the (Score 0) 28

Billions of dollars and they last five years. Something tells me that if Washington got out of the satellite business entirely, and partners would launch a sat with a 20 year service life that cost less than $100 million.

Then, the Google Earth crew would look at the Google Fiber team and say "if they can offer 700 mbps for $70, what can we do with satellites?" Maybe they'd launch a rocket carrying 50 mini-sats that together provided ten times better coverage than the 1960s style Landsats that the government is still launching.

Sometimes government research into new technology is good. For only a few billion dollars, DARPA created what would later become the internet. Speeds up to 300 bps in the government version. Then companies took it to 700000000 bps, after building the web atop the old gopher-carrying net.

Satellites aren't a top secret research project anymore. That's no reason for all the waste and inefficiency of government these days. The news channels and other users will buy satellite feeds from someone - if the need is there, that's a market, and a market will always attract suppliers.

Comment If they were connected, that would be "online" (Score 1) 60

So you'd have a bunch over local wifi networks, interconnected to make one large network? Someone in one city could access something in another city by these "inter-network" links, right? That network of inter-network links could be called the "internetwork". Maybe shorten that to "internet". Seriously, you're proposing nothing more or less than rebuilding the internet over again. The only change you're really suggesting is to use wifi rather than fiber to connect between cities. There's actually a reason we use fiber, not wifi, to connect between cities, and between campae. Fiber is a lot better for that purpose than wifi is. Wifi is designed for, and good at, letting you walk around your house with a tablet. It's not designed for, and not good at, links more than 30-100 feet.

Comment Sounds like someone who knows. I can only imagine (Score 1) 125

Sounds like you know WTF you're talking about. Those of us with zero combat hours ought to listen to you.
I've only flown at 60 knots, 1/10th the speed of a combat aircraft, and noone was shooting at me. A sim couldn't prepare me for that, an ultralight. Flying almost straight down at the ground (it seems) from 2000 feet up and keeping your noise pointed at the ground until a few seconds before you hit, without freaking out requires more than pretending on a computer screen. That's in a $2,500 plane that goes 65 mph and the sim can't replicate it. I can't imagine what it's like to be a combat aviator, but I'm pretty damn sure playing an expensive video game isn't proper preparation!

Comment Lottery winners disprove that (Score 1) 474

The overwhelming majority of lottery winners are broke again within a few years. That proves throwing money doesn't solve the problem of "50 inch plasma in a trailer" culture.

The problem is that some subcultures, and also general American culture more than some others, value flash over investment, rims over tuition. Throwing money at many people just means they'll have bigger rims on their hoopty, more gold around their neck.

  If someone from Japan or India gets $10,000, they'll turn it into a college degree or a business. Give some. Americans $10,000 and they'll put a fown payment on a tricked out 2006 Cadillac at the note lot.

Comment Better to lose French news than pay everyone (Score 1) 61

On the other hand, Google could have reasonably decided that if they start paying every site they index, that would put then out of business. Better to give up French news than signal they are ready to pay people for the privilege of sending them traffic. So paying off the French newspapers could increase profit in they very short term, but make business impossible in the long term. That would be dumb to set such a precedent, of course.

Also, t's not just the direct effect on Google. As someone else pointed out, sites like Slashdot post even longer summaries. Under such precedent, Slashdot can't have any more summaries without paying the site they link to. That is / would be bad for the internet, and Google knows that what's bad for the internet is bad for Google.

Comment Samsung didn't follow the standard. Linux did. (Score 4, Interesting) 185

Linux followed the IEFI standard. Samsung did not. Unambiguous foul on samsung.

More specifically, Samsung tried to implement version 2 of the standard and advertised it as version 2, but accidentally left in code which required version 1 behavior. Additionally, if an OS implemented version 2, when Samsung's firmware got confused, it didn't throw the proper error message, but instead returned it's own address to be overwritten. So at least two failures on Samsung's part. Linux simply followed the standard as written.

Comment Business failures are defined as creditor loss (Score 1) 159

What do you mean by "business failures"?

In economics, "business failures" is defined as discontinuation of operations resulting in losses to creditors. In other words, companies that went out of business AND couldn't pay their outstanding bills when they did. That's easier to measure than just "companies that stopped doing business" because the creditors report the loss, whereas a company that just stops may not report anything.

Which Obama's policy led to your loss?

I'd say it was 70% indirect, but I'll give a few examples of direct effects of his policies. We'll limit it to just health insurance policies to keep this from going on for 20 pages.
We've long had pretty good health insurance, which we were happy with. We paid 100% of the cost even for part time employees. In two years, as Obamacare is being phased in, the base premium increased by more than 50%. Total cost close to doubled, as I'll explain.
Also, half of our employees have a profit share, they each own a few percent of the company. Under Obama, the law was changed so that we had to report their insurance cost as taxable income on their W-2 AND the company could no longer deduct health insurance cost. (Under Obama everyone's insurance cost is deductible EXCEPT business owners', including 2% owners like our employees. Did I mention he's anti-business.) That penalty for making our employees owners increased cost another 30%, on top of the 50% premium increase. So that's one example, Obamacare nearly doubled our insurance cost.

Of course his policies were doing the same thing to our customers, doubling THEIR costs, leaving them with less money to by our products. Less sales + higher costs = we're out of business and te employees are jobless. That's the result of making policy based on feelings rather than actually thinking through the results.

Comment Battered wife syndrome. They won't do it again, re (Score 1) 227

Some Slashdot readers are like a certain type of abused spouse who keeps finding someone to abuse them, and actually believing that he won't do it again. Fool me once - shame on you, fool me twice - shame on me, get fooled for 30 years running - you're deliberately choosing to be an idiot.

Comment Awesome. I was wishing for that during the debates (Score 1) 149

That'll be great. Often, such as during the primaries while there are still 8 candidates, or when the two candidates are otherwise tied, I eliminate candidates based on relative honesty. I was wishing for a real-time politifact scroller. They all stretch the truth, of course, but some WAY more than others.

This, or later versions, could really be a boon to voters who aren't really interested in politics, so they often don't know an "obvious" lie when they hear it. For example, in some polls most Obama voters didn't recognize the name of the then-current vice president. How are they supposed to judge the veracity of a candidate's statements when they have no interest in, and little knowledge of, politics? (Not saying they are dumb, they just spend their time on things other than politics.)

I had envisioned some invited experts typing quick notes like "factually false" into a chat type system, but if a machine can be more objective, great.

Comment Not better or worse, just different things (Score 1) 146

Sure, most of the time I like small things, especially small, dedicated single purpose software that does one thing well. I watch all of my porn with mplayer. For the home entertainment system, though, scheduling TV recordings, etc., clicking a the menu an integrated suite is much nicer.

Comment Being first to market is a BIG advantage (Score 1) 259

the first guy to buy the patent would be a real sucker if the price went down.

As a business owner, I strongly disagree. Being the first to market with something cool is a huge advantage. If you're a tech geek, consider the early versions of Java. It was HORRIBLE. Because it was conceived, designed, implemented, "tested" and sent to market in about a year, it was perhaps the worst programming language ever. There's a reason they wanted it out in a year, though - to be the first browser app language available. Do you remember the competing languages that came out in the months to follow, between 1996 and 1999? Neither does anyone else. Java was first to market and that pretty much solidified their dominance for the next fifteen years. So buying the first license for say $50,000 would be much smarter than waiting a month and paying $49,000, sometimes.

Comment ROTFL "the private sector is doing fine". (Score 1) 159

Plenty of businesses are doing fine, so I suspect the problem is not with the taxes, but rather with you.

ROTFL. The private sector is doing fine, right? Even you President Kardashian couldn't say that with a straight face. When he tried to say it, he had to come back out and retract that statement, saying "It is absolutely clear that the economy is NOT doing fine."

I've been in business twenty years. (or 25 if you count part time businesses). I've launched four completely different companies. Our business, and thousands of others, was taken down when Obama launched his attack on business. We were fine under Reagan. We hired people under Bush I. We did fine with the fast and loose economy of Clinton. No problems under Bush II. (Though the last year of Bush II wasn't awesome.) If it was us, we wouldn't have been around that long. In the two years following Obama's election, business failures increased by 40%. 40% man. If you like Obama, fine. Maybe you like his smile. Maybe you think he smells nice, whatever. But don't lie to yourself - he's radically anti-business.

There's no bigger supporter of Obama than liberal journalist Fareed Zakaria. Zakaria is honest with himself, though, saying Obama is "at his core, anti-business."

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