Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Bad idea. (Score 3, Insightful) 505

That's easy, and all in how the media reports it on the local evening news:

1) "Child porn was downloaded repeatedly at a local Starbucks" - Translation? Viewer thinks that some pervert went to a Starbucks and downloaded CP, thus Starbucks is not to blame.

2) "Child porn was downloaded repeatedly at the home of a local resident" - Translation? Viewer thinks that *you*, the homeowner, are the pervert. Enough said, no?

Comment Re:penny per save (Score 1) 241

I have never paid for MS Office in my entire life (and never used MS Office on my home machinery ever since OpenOffice was first released.)

I strongly suspect that most other folks can say the same - that they either use FOSS by now, or just use a copy 'borrowed' from work, the local torrent warehouse, or wherever.

Serious question - who on Earth actually pays for the thing for home use?

Comment Re:I'm curious to see how many retailers actually (Score 1) 732

You have to go in to pay... IIRC that's for any transaction, unless you want them to only put in exactly what you hand 'em in cash ($10, $20, etc). Been awhile since I've been to one though; I moved to the coast a year ago.

(for everyone else - Oregon won't let you pump your own gas, so most folks just stay in the car.)

Comment Re:I'm curious to see how many retailers actually (Score 1) 732

My credit union reimburses me for any ATM fees charged in their networks, so I don't look too deeply, but yes - if you use your own bank's ATM machines, you're good to go. OTOH, unless you have a rather large bank (or an arrangement such as that which my CU has).

OTOH, "one of the bazillion ATMs" really wasn't specific about that. ;)

Comment Re:so they can steal your code (Score 1) 339

"Stealing implies that you don't keep your copy. You still do." is that the same for downloading music?

No, but a better music analogy is at hand: some no-name band writes and sings an excellent but little-known song, then Justin Bieber hears it, and shortly after sings/releases the same song (with a few small changes) as if he wrote it.

Comment Re:I'm curious to see how many retailers actually (Score 1) 732

I've already swiped my credit card while the clerk is still scanning the first item. When they finish scanning everything, I might not even have to sign the screen (for a small enough transaction). For cash, you can't do anything until you get the total.

Not sure about other places, but at least here in Oregon most stores have you confirm the total amount, and there is still the delay while the charge is authorized. This authorization lag can be fractions of a second for the big boys, up to a full minute for the small shops (while the modem dials and does the transaction one at a time).

There is also one big, fat disadvantage of using a card: The phrase "I'm sorry, but your card was declined". I live in a rural area where tourists often don't keep track of their purchases during their stay out here. As a result, I've waited in line behind quite a few folks who have had that phrase spoken to them. Usually the card is first re-run to rule out some error, then they try and remove items to some guessed amount of credit remaining, re-run the transaction again, maybe do it one or two other times, then finally everything goes through (or not). That, or they just sigh and pay with cash for whatever items their on-hand cash will buy.

Comment Re:I'm curious to see how many retailers actually (Score 4, Interesting) 732

The logic is (almost) sound. I see a few points of failure here...

* A typical register will have something like $50 in change sitting in there, with maybe $50 as backup for every two registers or so. A typical large local grocery store with 20 registers would barely need $1500 in change money sitting around, with maybe $500 more for the customer service desk. Way short of your $10k figure, and the excess gets deposited nightly at the nearest bank anyway as income, where it gets put to use for the business. Even on a macro scale (say, Wal-Mart), $10k would easily cover change for 3 or 4 supercenters, or what you'd find in a typical city. Compared to the hundreds of thousands of bucks that those 3-4 supercenters suck in each day, $10k is chump change.

* If you have a bank branch for your business' bank close by and it's during most of the business' open hours, you just go get more change - takes a few minutes, tops (you notice it's running low, you go get more...)

* CC transactions often take just as long, if not longer than cash. The transaction has to be authorized before you're done, grocery purchases can be half-and-half (say, half debit, half EBT), etc.

* What if the buyer doesn't have enough to pay for the complete purchase? Any time the cashier turns and says "I'm sorry, your card was declined", everyone in line waits while a guessing game is played: how much does the declined shopper have in his/her account, as transactions are re-run multiple times to find out? With cash, both parties know on the spot how much the buyer is short, and can adjust accordingly.

Comment Re:I'm curious to see how many retailers actually (Score 1) 732

...or hit one of the bazillion ATMs in town and not get stuck with the fees...

Point of order: ATMs usually charge around a set fee (around $3.00) or a set percentage in fees (with few exceptions) per transaction, so unless you drag out $200.00 or more in each go, you're pretty much paying the same to the ATM that you would to VISA, Mastercard, et al.

I understand and empathize with your point, but would suggest that you may want to hit your local bank branch and get that cash from the teller.

Comment Re:I'm curious to see how many retailers actually (Score 3, Interesting) 732

That depends... to the typical person who is poor, they're going to use cash and checks (and maybe debit) anyway. Why? Because most will have cashed their paychecks at the grocery store, Wal-Mart, and suchlike. The advertised discount is a bonus to 'em.

We have something similar here in Oregon; the "am/pm" (Arco) gas stations. You pay a surcharge if you use plastic (debit or credit) to buy your gas. The stations are usually packed to the rafters - they're often sited in the less prosperous areas of town. The average price per tankful (say, 15 gallons) works out to around 10 cents less per gallon if you pay cash.

Not defending it or suchlike, but take it as you will.

Comment Re:What did you expect? (Score 2) 268

Is all that really worth it to save a few hundred bucks per seat?

Depends - you;re counting immediate costs, not long-term.

When you consider the amount of retraining needed for each new version of MS Office to come out the pipe nowadays (starting with the stupid ribbon and going downhill from there), even with folks who are already mega-power-users on the thing? When you consider the never-ending EA agreement cycle (and that's the cheap way to do it when we talk these numbers)? When you consider that it takes fewer sysadmins to produce/maintain higher numbers of Linux servers? When you consider the higher downtime, Winrot, A/V and cleanups, and all the other headaches that are exclusive to Microsoft products?

I'd say the savings really do add up on the Linux side of the balance sheet.

Slashdot Top Deals

fortune: cpu time/usefulness ratio too high -- core dumped.