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Comment Re:API level (Score 2) 419

What you're missing is that quite a few APIs get backported to older OS releases. It's less efficient to have apps contain copies of the libraries like that, but it does work. The trend is in this direction e.g. with play services. Obviously you can't backport everything like that, but a lot of the important stuff is (like new map widgets, etc). The difference between ICS and jellybean, API wise, isn't that huge. The big leap was Gingerbread to ICS. So, you really only have to pick between those two. You can just pretend Gingerbread doesn't exist if you like, the market share will still be larger than iPhone.

Comment Re:Adoption is all very well, but... (Score 2) 419

Except that cheap Android device are still a million years better than the old JavaME feature phones were. If people who buy cheap phones aren't buying your apps, maybe the issue is nobody is selling them a useful enough app? There's certainly an untapped market there. People should see that as an opportunity, not some sign of "weakness".

Heck, I'm an advanced user with plenty of money and the fact is, all the apps I want or could need on Android are free anyway. I bought TuneIn Pro because I listen to net radio a lot and it was worth it. Otherwise the apps I use most frequently are gratis.

Comment Re:Misses the point (Score 5, Insightful) 419

Yes, exactly. A lot of the reason Gingerbread sticks around is because it's not a bad OS at all and it is the last version that had non-OpenGL based graphics. So it can run on pretty meagre hardware compared to ICS+. Some manufacturers are using Android's openness to fix the OS version and push down the price rather than keep price stable and push up the OS. Both approaches are valid and both are needed - the fact that Apple is blind to this market reality says more about them than Android.

Anyway this ignores the fact that Apple routinely updates older devices to the 'latest' OS that is actually something claiming to be the latest version, but doesn't have most of the new features. It's easy to play games with version numbers if you simply strip out anything requiring the latest hardware and still call it the latest OS.

Comment Re:"Coin exchanges have a terrible track record" (Score 1) 179

If you knew anything about how exchanges work John, you'd know that withdrawal limits are typically imposed by the banks themselves and/or AML rules. Not your entirely unfounded theories about them being fractional reserve. Mt Gox has made many references over the years to having to negotiate with banks to up the amount of money they're allowed to transfer per day. Just one more reason why the banking system sucks. There are typically no withdraw limits on the Bitcoin side once AML verification and good security are set up.

Comment Basic issue (Score 2) 26

Tech venture capitalists typically want to cash out fast by having their investments sell to {Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo, etc} and those companies typically don't want to go outside the Valley because integrating a remote team is hard. Also, the VC's don't want to go outside the Valley because checking up on their investments if they're the other side of the world is hard. Result: if you can't be reached by driving down the US-101 for an hour then it suddenly gets much harder to get huge piles of venture capital and if you don't have that, there is a serious risk you will end up being out-spent or out-integrated by a company that does.

Comment Re:Is I also said on Ars... (Score 2) 404

Because everything is classified, when the system is inevitably used to achieve political ends, you most likely won't even realise it's happened. Your position is like someone in 2001 saying "but requiring banks to verify their customers identity isn't being used to manipulate politics, it'll just be used to fight the terrorists!" and then some years later WikiLeaks gets cut off. It is only possible because of the infrastructure laid down for other reasons. In that case the smackdown was clearly visible, but most attempts to fight The Man wouldn't even get that far.

These systems already protect themselves as their first priority. it's only a matter of time until a journalist working on a story about government abuse of power against a suspected terrorist suddenly discovers that their source vanishes. They'll never know that the US was monitoring all people that the journalist interacted with and was able to find the leak.

Comment Re:define "serious" (Score 5, Informative) 244

Such data is gathered by the YouGov surveys, which happen very regularly. Here's the latest report. Unsurprisingly given the sort of policies associated with the coalition government, the approval rating of Parliament splits strongly down party lines. Overall the government is unpopular with a 25% approval rating, 61% disapproval and 14% don't know. However this average disguises the fact that amongst conservative voters approval is 75% and amongst Labour voters approval is only 5%.

These sorts of figures are what you might expect from the UK. The situation is not comparable to the USA where the approval rating of Congress reflects a more deep rooted feeling that corruption is rampant and all the parties are fundamentally the same. This can be seen in the fact that disapproval of Congress is almost identical regardless of voting intention. The problems in the UK reflect a strong north/south division every bit as strong as the city/rural division in the USA, where the richer and more conservative south tends to approval of austerity due to a less systematic dependence on welfare and public sector jobs. The post-industrial north is dominated by Labour voters who never made the transition to the service/knowledge economy and where quality of life is highly dependent on government spending.

I don't have time to find more precise stats, but I suspect if you examined UK voters beliefs more closely, people would not feel that democracy itself was particularly broken. Especially not over something as trivial as piracy - only in places like Slashdot and amongst the people who read it does piracy become some kind of moral imperative. Everyone else I know treats it as a naughty pleasure. They know they're breaking the law and won't get caught, but they don't have any desire to make a big moral campaign of it.

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