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Comment Re:Baen Books (Score 1) 309

Don't tell me what the authors could/should do, tell the authors!

In a free market, you could always A. tell your favorite authors about the situation and ask them to negotiate reversion of rights to allegedly "failed" books when renewing contracts with publishers, B. discover new favorite authors, or C. become an author yourself.

Comment Re:Bitcoin requires cellular data (Score 1) 753

So run a wallet with an SMS interface (I'm not aware of such a beast but there's absolutely no reason it couldn't work)

In order to bring about a future free of Federal Reserve notes, U.S. cellular carriers' policies would first have to change dramatically. Under most major U.S. carriers' current policy, the carrier will force a data plan on the subscriber if the handset is capable of running third-party apps such as this hypothetical SMS wallet. CDMA2000 carriers (Verizon and Sprint) by and large won't activate a smartphone on a plan without data, and AT&T is known for cramming a data plan onto any voice-only SIM inserted into a smartphone. And even then, the subscriber has to either pay per month for the privilege to use money or pay to send and pay to receive each text message.

Comment The point is that not all states have such a law (Score 1) 443

there isn't one

Correct.

then probably the only "legal" way to cross is to dismount (become a pedestrian) and walk across

Yet the city somehow can't spend money for a "CYCLISTS DISMOUNT" sign.

the 35 states that haven't passed dead red laws

Also, I think there is a law for dealing with lights that are not functioning properly which probably says treat it like a stop sign.

The source implies that only about 15 U.S. states have such a law about malfunctioning traffic signals.

Comment Re:Bitcoin requires cellular data (Score 1) 753

phones with a data plan are too expensive per month for a child to afford on his allowance.

And will remain so for all eternity?

It will remain so as long as FCC policy allows U.S. cellular carriers to keep it so. I can't say that will be eternity, but with the polarization of the electorate that has led to a do-nothing Congress for the past three and a half years, I don't see it changing in the near future. Or what other country's "dollar" is being discussed?

I thought we were discussing predictions of the future.

That depends on whether "future" refers to a decade or a century.

Comment Re:Cost of smartphone service (Score 1) 753

That most people already have a smartphone.

The data plan issue is a bigger one, I think.

Some people avoid buying a smartphone precisely because many carriers force purchase of a data plan. For example, Virgin Mobile USA offers pay-per-minute voice service starting at $20 per 90 days but won't activate that plan on a smartphone. Instead, plans that can be activated on a smartphone start at $35 per month, which is five times as much.

Comment Re:Children (Score 1) 753

By the parent using the parent's bank card.

With a substantial transaction fee.

By the kid splitting a larger card so he can give some amount to his buddy

With a substantial transaction fee each.

or combining several cards he got from his buddies.

With a substantial transaction fee each.

Comment Cost of smartphone service (Score 1) 753

You can get the hardware and an account to accept credit card payments using your iPhone, for instance.

But then you have to pay hundreds of USD for an iPhone (or maybe one hundred for a compatible Android phone) and hundreds of USD per year to upgrade from voice-only cellular service to smartphone service. Or what am I missing?

Comment "Always" is a strong word: I don't carry a balance (Score 2) 753

Credit card companies in the US are always double-dipping, charging processing fees to the merchants and collecting interest from cardholders.

Often, yes. Always, no. I've had three credit cards. None of them charge any interest because I pay in full each month with an ACH transfer from my checking account.

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