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Comment Willemstad (Score 3, Insightful) 226

Passengers on flights coming from Willemstad into Amsterdam get checked 100%, because of the lax checks at Willemstad and the proportionally high amount of drug trafficking on this route.

Doing random checks on people not selected because they trigger certain alerts that make them suspicious makes it hard for customs/safety to get bribed and increases the chance the bad guys get caught. Once the bad guys figure out how not to stand out or bribe the guards, it's hard to catch them otherwise. This is why the random selector is better than having people do the random part of the selection. You want to check the poor African guy travelling alone to a rich country with a stop of one day in central America, because that's suspicious. But that doesn't mean that the mom and pop with a kid coming back from a 2 week holiday in Mexico can't be smuggling in a few Ks of cocaine as well. Having them press the button will make them think twice about the risk and it will probably even have a preventative effect in itself.

Comment Re:Says it all! (Score 1) 237

The researchers seem pretty open about the results. It's one site, and clearly one site does not a full study represent. Obviously the industry is going to trumpet this as the be-all and end-all, just as they did with some preliminary research, now largely debunked, that fracking didn't lead to or at least exacerbate earthquakes. That's the part I'm still dubious about. It's rather like feeding a five hundred pound guy a near-fatal dose (if he was 200 pounds) of arsenic and then, when he doesn't drop dead after a few days, declaring "Arsenic is safe!"

Comment Re:Sounds iffy (Score 5, Informative) 237

The way I read it (yes, I read the article) is that they put a marker of some kind into the chemical brew being slugged into the ground, and found no sign of that marker in ground water. Now obviously there are still questions to be raised, but still, in and of itself, this seems a pretty reasonable way to determine groundwater contamination.

Comment Re:I'm glad (Score 1) 442

I should also add that, at work, we use OpenVPN, and there are clients for iOS and newer versions of Android that work without rooting and allow encrypted access to internal resources like RDP, internal websites and file shares. Just yesterday I rebooted a server with an encrypted file store on it and was able to issue the decryption passphrase from my Nexus 7 about 90 miles away from where the server was located.

This is Microsoft's problem. Whatever problems it thinks Surface RT is supposed to solve, most of them have already been solved.

Comment Re:I'm glad (Score 3, Insightful) 442

I have an RDP client on my Nexus 7 that works just fine. I have no idea why someone would claim that there is a limitation.

I also have a pretty damned good file browser for my Nexus 7 that allows me to connect to my work SMB shares, Google Drive, Dropbox and the Android filesystem and copy files between them with ease.

Comment Re:Microsoft doesn't know what it wants to be (Score 1) 442

They're going into hardware because it's pretty clear no profitable company wants to make RT devices, so if they don't directly involve themselves in putting devices on the market it won't be there at all.

The larger reason is they fear (not without justification) that the consumer market has shifted away from PCs completely, and is now firmly in the hands of smartphones, tablets and other smart devices. While Microsoft's fortunes don't rise or fall with the consumer market, the fact is that it would take a big enough swipe out of revenues to cause them concern. Worse, once the consumer market gets comfortable with non-PC computing devices running non-Microsoft operating systems, there will be creep into the enterprise market (much as Microsoft made its fortunes by creep from the enterprise market into the consumer market), and that could have serious ramifications in the medium and long term.

Comment Re:Steve Sinofsky (Score 2) 442

I think you've nailed it on the head. But there are deep systemic issues here. The failure of Surface RT (and, I would imagine, ultimately Surface as well, along with the deep unpopularity of Windows 8) is that Microsoft is a company who has seen its consumer market shrink catastrophically. In part I think it is just bad luck. For whatever reason Apple had Steve Job's Reality Distortion Field that made iDevices sexy must-haves that could be sold at a premium simply because there was an "i" at the beginning of the device name. Whether it was Zune, smartphones or tablets, Microsoft just couldn't pierce that field.

At the same time, Google did its best over the same timespan to get Android put on everything from throw away cell phones to high end tablets, and has absolutely astonishing market penetration.

Between Apple and Google, iOS and Android have become ubiquitous on smart devices, and everyone else is a very distant third. Blackberry can't get back in and Microsoft can't get any footing.

Sure, Microsoft could, and probably will end up selling them far below cost or just giving them away. Maybe that will trigger something, but at this point I doubt it. No one wants Surface RT, and I don't think it has a damned thing to do with quality of product.

Comment Re:How can that be? (Score 1) 550

Indeed. My organization might have found that a tablet that tightly integrated with Active Directory infrastructure something to invest in, even at a higher price point. As it is, you basically have a high priced that isn't meaningfully more integrated to MS's enterprise offerings than your comparable Android or iDevice.

Comment Re:+5 Insightful for (Score 4, Insightful) 424

The economic problems predated Carter, and while he certainly was unable to fix them, he was, after all ultimately stymied by the energy crisis of the late 1970s. As to the Afghan invasion, what exactly could he have done? At no point during the Cold War did the US contemplate direct intervention against the Soviets, save as a final nightmare scenario like an all-out invasion of Western Europe. Neither Carter, nor any other President, would have directly involved the US in Afghanistan. As to Iran, yes, he misjudged the unpopularity of the Shah, but then again, so had several administrations before him, so I fail to see how you can put your focus solely on the Carter Administration's actions surrounding Iran, seeing as he was perpetuating a policy that his predecessors had maintained for well over two decades.

Carter was hardly a perfect president, but he is a classic example of how sometimes leaders get the job at the worst of all possible moments, and ultimately no matter what they do or don't do, the situation is far larger and chaotic than any leader, particularly of a democratic state, can hope to overcome.

Carter is a damned bright guy, a helluva brighter than his immediate successor, but he was as screwed as Herbert Hoover (another very bright guy)/

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