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Comment Re:Contradiction? (Score 1) 644

I am confused. When did the concept of a product "winning" mean that it's stomped out its competitors to the point where they no longer exist? It seems to me that Chrome just inched past Firefox in user share. That's a "win" - but Firefox is still in the game, and so is Internet Explorer (and Safari, and Opera, etc.). I guess if Firefox loses its funding, it'll be gone - but that isn't the WIN of the free market - the WIN of the free market is when the better product gets more market share (and hopefully profits) then its competitors. Both the supplier and consumer are better served when that happens - and thus, a "free market win."

Comment Re:Absolutely illegal (Score 1) 322

Good points! I was thinking less in terms of the carriers (and by the way - good chance they outsource the storage of that information - so they may NOT need to be PCI compliant - their processors might be handling that for them - my company does this for many other companies) - and more in terms of the software company that created the crapware.

Comment Re:"Triple the costs" (Score 1) 631

I think you are missing something important (and very basic) about costs: there are fixed costs, and there are variable costs.

Automation is a fixed cost. This cost gets spread out by every unit you can produce. If you are CONSISTENTLY producing a huge amount of product, then having your costs be fixed is great - the cost per unit can really be pushed down to a low level.

Labor is a variable cost (basically). That means that if you have to change the amount of product you are producing, your unit costs don't change. This can be a very good thing.

Think about how those two things work for a minute or ten. Think about how manufacturing tends to work. Now, try to understand that this can actually be a difficult decision - and that's it is a lot more complicated then you made it out to be. To the point where I actually question the likelihood that you "actually costed one product line that had been largely automated and discovered that hand assembly in China cost almost exactly the same."

Comment Re:Absolutely illegal (Score 1) 322

While I agree, as far as I can tell, with all of your other points, PCI compliance is not an issue for this company. These rules apply only to companies that are processing credit cards. It's quite legal for anyone to store as much plaintext credit card information as they want - they will just not be allowed to actually process data through PCI compliant processors. I bring this up because many other posts on this thread mention the same issue. And it's important, in my opinion, to focus your efforts on things based in real facts. So, point is, these companies are not in compliance with PCI, but they are also not required to be in compliance with PCI, based on what I've seen posted about them.

Comment Re:Wow... (Score 2) 473

you forgot the 1 child per family china, and the majority of those families are having males. More Males mean less kids.

In 40-50 years china's population will start to contract massively.

compare with the Western world which is having less kids later in their lives. means that the separation between generations is increasing.

Not to mention the fact that resource wars and wars caused by having too many unattached men on the planet are likely to take care of some of the population...

Comment It could work... (Score 1) 237

But it depends on how the guy is calculating costs. Is he saying that if zero paper printouts were created, the investment would pay off in less than 18 months? If so, then he is not doing this correctly. If he is saying that it will reduce paper printouts by something like 50% (and he'd need a solid basis for the figure), then perhaps this is a good idea. A lot of people here on Slashdot are annoyed that they are looking at iPads - and I agree - what a waste of money, etc. On the other hand, the article isn't clear if that is their only consideration - must it be an iPad? It seems like they actually mean to be saying "tablet computer" (from the article) - but iPad now means "tablet computer" for a lot of people, unfortunately. Anyway, as long as they are calculating their return realistically, I think this would be pretty great.
Games

Coming Soon, Shorter Video Games 637

Hugh Pickens writes "Blake Snow writes that according to one expert, 90% of players who start a game will never see the end of it and it's not just dull games that go unfinished. Only 10% of avid gamers completed last year's critically acclaimed Red Dead Redemption, according to Raptr, which tracks more than 23 million gaming sessions. 'What I've been told as a blanket expectation is that 90% of players who start your game will never see the end of it unless they watch a clip on YouTube,' says Keith Fuller, a longtime production contractor for Activision. The bottom line is people have less time to play games than they did before, they have more options than ever, and they're more inclined to play quick-hit multiplayer modes, even at the expense of 100-hour epics. 'They're lucky to find the time to beat a 10-hour game once or twice a month,' says Fuller of the average-age gamer. 'They don't feel cheated about shorter games and will just play a longer game for as many hours as their schedule allows before moving on to another title.' Even avid gamers are already warming to the idea of shorter games. 'Make a game worth my time and money, and I'll be happy,' says Casey Willis. 'After all, 10 hours of awesome is better than 20 hours of boring.'"

Comment Re:Unionize this (Score 1) 1008

Maybe that's why the Federation couldn't invent their way out of a paper bag unless they were faced with some threat they had to handle in less than sixty minutes - and then they were able to completely invent and construct new technology that allowed them to break/overcome all known rules of physics prior to that moment. The laziness of a non-capitalistic society. ;)

Comment Re:Some activities warrant excessive caution ... (Score 1) 505

I've argued against your false portrayal of my opinion. I'm not quite sure why you keep bringing up the anecdote vs science red herring.

This would be the first time you've said I've portrayed your opinion incorrectly, and if you bother to reread the thread here, you'll see that either you are intentionally misrepresenting the exchange, or you have somehow completely forgotten everything we've said.

Intentionally misrepresenting my opinion does not really enhance your argument. I did not say I feared your kindle. I said it added to the flight crew workload for no real benefit. You can read between take off and landing. We all make trivial accommodations during takeoff and landing for the comfort and safety of each other and the efficiency of the flight crew.

Arguing dishonestly doesn't make this a "win" for you. You have clearly NOT said that it "added to the flight crew workload for no benefit." You have repeatedly compared the "trivial use" of a banned electronic device (which includes the Kindle) should not be allowed because it may endanger everyone. That has nothing to do with crew workload, and everything to do with an unreasonable fear.

If you want to continue to shift your position, and deny what's been stated in the thread, then I suppose I will be forced to conclude that this conversation is a waste of time, as you are not only not having an honest conversation with me, but are apparently only discussing this issue for some imagined audience with which you are trying to gain some sort of "points" as if you can win somehow.

Comment Re:Some activities warrant excessive caution ... (Score 1) 505

Wrong. I have *never* said anecdotal stories trump scientific studies. I started the discussion with a cost-benefit type argument, that the trivial unnecessary benefit of using a personal device during landing is not warranted given the extremely high cost (100+ human lives) of a possible accident. Basically that even though the likelihood of such an event is extremely unlikely the trivial nature of the benefit suggests forgoing the benefit.

And I've argued from the beginning that anecdotal stories do not trump scientific studies, which has always clearly been my point - so why are you even responding to me? If you agree, then just say so.

An uninformed guess on your part. Your kindle should be stowed during takeoff because the flight crew should not bear the responsibility of recognizing which devices emit and which do not. Note that a device comparable to your kindle, an iPad, was found to be the worst offender with respect to emissions. Furthermore, the flight crew should not take the owners word on what emits and what does not and the flight crew should not have to deal with passengers who are annoyed that someone else gets to keep their device while they have to stow theirs. Like my original argument, the trivial unnecessary benefit you experience from using your kindle during takeoff does not warrant the additional workload you will cause the flight crew.

There are MANY MANY MANY more sane ways to deal with this. Device certification, for example, would handle the issue. Having the ability to DETECT devices onboard that are emitting dangerous signals would be another. Hell, I'd expect you to, I don't know, want to see that more than a ban, since, as many people have already said to you - people are constantly using these devices and leaving them on every flight that goes up. Don't you think we should actually enforce the ban, you know, the one that was supposed to be temporary while studies were conducted to determine if there really was a problem?

I still, by the way, say that my right to read a friggin' book is more important than your right to exercise your unreasonable fear. Especially given more sane options to resolve the potential, and unlikely, issue.

Comment Re:Some activities warrant excessive caution ... (Score 1) 505

Consider that in the specific test offered by Boeing engineers the worst offender was an iPad. So it is an extremely recent experiment. Consumer technology has changed radically over time. Studies conducted five or ten years ago are becoming decreasingly relevant.

If you are going to change your argument so that you agree with mine, can you just admit it so we can all go on? After all, you have been arguing that anecdotal stories trump scientific studies. I disagreed. Now you are saying, but, well, there are scientific studies mentioned in the article that are more recent than the old ones. Duh. That's what I've been saying all along - there are currently scientific studies being done on the subject - so why should we legislate over anecdotal stories that are at best, questionable? As in, "not likely to be true"?

A far more important problem with the analogy is that using a car is more of a necessity for many individuals, whereas the use of a personal device during landing is a trivial and unnecessary act. Recall the cost-benefit analysis, a low frequency but high cost paired with a trivial benefit suggests forgoing the benefit while a highly useful benefit may suggest the risk is warranted. The later is pretty much a daily experience given the hazards of driving, one is more likely to get taken out by a drunk driver than a software failure in the brakes.

Argue against the analogy all you want - my inability to use a Kindle during takeoff, when the Kindle has zero emissions during use, because you are scared because some guy told you a story about a time when some unnamed device caused some sort of issue in a situation completely unrelated to, you know, the situation in which I'm actually using the Kindle - well, that's just silly, at best. And that is the actual reason why people are looking at your posts and thinking that you are a slight bit more than a little crazy.

Comment Re:Some activities warrant excessive caution ... (Score 1) 505

Are you unaware of the fact that scientific studies are currently, and have been in the past, conducted on this subject? Is that where your confusion is coming from? Because if you are, and you are still offering this argument, I seriously don't understand how you could go here.

Would you consider the following analogy better? Perhaps if someone said that they have personally experienced their car's brakes locking up, and they believe it is due to the anti-lock break system. And it's the only car that's ever had that problem. And extensive testing and research was done in order to see if anyone could reproduce the problem. And thousands and thousands of people could be effected - even possible leading to deaths! But nothing can be found - zero effect. And theoritically, the effect is impossible. And the scientific community continues to study the subject, but tell the car manufacturer and the government that they shouldn't stop people from going ahead and using the car. Should the car be taken off the road?

If not, why? If so, WHY? The anecdotal evidence in the airplane interference is about as full of crap. The situation isn't only similar - it's pretty much the same - and both have actually happened. Do you have any understanding as to why so many people are reading your statement and thinking you are a bit crazy?

Comment Re:Some activities warrant excessive caution ... (Score 1) 505

The pitot tubes on certain Airbus aircraft were heavily tested using scientific methods and found to be safe. Reports of problems were probably considered anecdotal by some. Yet we eventually had a catastrophic loss of life where we found that the scientific methods employed failed to uncover a design flaw. Your analogy is also severely flawed. Eating is a necessity. Using a handheld device during landing is not.

Really? So, some idiot who has an anecdotal story (which, by the way, I can counter with my own, absolutely true, idiotic anecdotal story), should take precedence over scientific research, because scientific research once failed to predict a problem? Why bother with science at all then? If that's the value of a scientific study to you, then perhaps you should be campaigning against science. While using a handheld device during landing isn't all that crazy important to me, basing laws on anecdotal evidence that directly contradicts scientific findings (and massive amounts of other anecdotal evidence) is dangerous - and that IS important to me. I absolutely refuse to ignore B.S. like this, just because someone says it's for the children.

Comment Re:Some activities warrant excessive caution ... (Score 1) 505

Actually, yes. How about something regarding consequences? Say 100+ people in a fragile machine, surround by flammable liquids, moving at a high rate of speed and doing so with limited to no visibility outside the machine having a "mishap" because someone had to check twitter? There are some activities where an excess of caution is warranted, personally I believe that needing to use an ***instrument landing system because of bad weather*** is one such activity.

Here's the problem with this reasoning. Much work has been done to prove a connection using scientific methods. The answer? Nope - not a problem - but let's keep looking, because, as you said, this is dangerous and important. And you say "Screw the science - anecdotal is good enough - cause it is dangerous!" Well, I'm sorry, but just because a friend of mine swears that genetically altered food contains arsenic because he got sick once, and was told he had food poisoning after eating an apple, doesn't mean it's something to freak out about - even though food poisoning is dangerous, and yes, it's possible he could have died.

Comment Re:Quiet Helicopter? Hardly. (Score 1) 484

According to the tweets about the incident, as it happened, if we've got a stealthy, quiet super-secret high-tech helicopter here, then I think we might have overpaid for it. Check out the article, and then read the tweets: http://www.cnn.com/2011/TECH/social.media/05/02/osama.twitter.reports/index.html?hpt=Sbin

Whoops - I see this has already been answered ad naseum. Please ignore my post as you should. That's all - thanks.

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