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Comment Re:A brilliant strategy... (Score 0) 377

Most likely the money train only makes regular stops early in the game cycle. Eventually the players get bored with Mafia Wars and instead move onto Chinese Triad Wars, which is the same thing with new artwork, and the cycle begins again.

At some point the cost of support is going to outweigh the income, and Zynga's primary aim above all others is keeping the profit per unit time as high as possible.

Comment Re:Piracy = Theft Analogy (Score 1) 432

As I said, payment may give him incentive to continue writing software. It may not, if it's too low a sum. He may write software for the mere pleasure, or because it adds value to him.

Investing time now to acquire future income is a gamble. The decision on whether to invest time must be made on an assessment of the future income, and past performance is a useful indicator to factor into that assessment. But the time is lost whether that income occurs or not.

Right, but the justification seems to be that because that time has already been "gambled" away, that someone not paying for the app but still using it is morally ok because "it's just ones and zeros and the time has been spent to make it whether I buy it or not". That's the argument I'm addressing. It's clear in that case that the developer's gamble *did* pay off - someone wants to use his product. So, the demand is there. It's not infeasible to expect that someone who wants to use the app actually pays for it if it is being sold. The gamble in investing time and money to make it is whether there's sufficient demand and a decent customer base for your product, not that you should feel "lucky" if people actually pay for it.

Comment parent overrated? (Score 0) 432

Not sure how the above comment, at a base score, is overrated.

Only on slashdot can you be modded overated for a pro-developer stance and for taking the argument "If I make something and chose to sell it for money, then people who take it without paying are negatively affecting said developer".

Remember, -1 mods are not synonymous with "I disagree".

Comment Re:Living in the wrong country (Score 1) 432

and yet somehow, to some people, it is still too much to pay.

If the developer doesn't want to take your money because you're still in high school, therefore under 18, therefore no credit card, then two bucks is too much to pay. If the developer doesn't want to take your money because you happen to have been born in the wrong country, then two bucks is too much to pay. In fact, that's where the expectation of free apps on Android came from: because Android Market launched with no paid apps in most countries, early developers had to make their programs ad-supported.

You think not having a credit card means you can't buy apps from the App Store? I suggest you go and learn some facts before you start building a hill to die on.

You have problems with the app store model? Fine, argue those - that's the point of a discussion site, but at least argue honestly. Justifying app piracy because the person who wants the app is under 18 and doesn't have a credit card? Weak. Not only is it a pathetic argument, it's also not even remotely true. You can open an iTunes account with no credit card and buy iTunes gift cards with cash. No credit or other bank card has to ever go near your account.

Comment Re:Piracy = Theft Analogy (Score 1) 432

Someone had to do the work to get that particular combination of ones and zeroes to line up. Our laws give them copyright governing how they are distributed and they choose to ask for money in exchange.

So who, exactly, was it that put the gun to the "content creators'" heads and forced them to create "content"? Certainly it wasn't me, and certainly they are well aware of the level of technology available to the average person in our society. Therefore I have no sympathy for them and merely offer them cheese to go along with their whine about how they "had" to line up their ones and zeros.

For musicians, they could simply choose to not record, and opt for earning income from live performances and merchandising (think SpaceBalls the Flamethrower (the kids love that one)). For actors they could choose to stop recording screen acting sessions and opt for live performances as well.

If you really want to stop our society from replicating your "copyrighted" strings of zeros and ones the solution is easy: turn off our electricity. Because the reality is I've never heard Broadway whining, nor live performance bands. Probably because they still rake in plenty of cold hard cash which allows them drink wine and eat cheese, rather than whine and beg the question if they would like some cheese.

They didn't "have" to, but they did. They're certainly not entitled to make a profit on their app, or even get back what they put into it in terms of time and money - that's how business works. Put it this way, they have the same entitlement to profit as you do to copy it without paying; none.

With your attitude then I suspect many of them decide to say "screw this, I won't do it any more" and we're all worse off as the only developers left on major app stores are the behemoths.

Comment Re:Piracy = Theft Analogy (Score 0) 432

Theft of my time. Time I could have spent earning extra income helping someone with an odd job or time I could have spent going out with friends or even getting a couple extra hours of sleep.

No. Your time has already been used. You wont get it back if someone pays you a dollar for your app.

You may be incentivised to invest more time into trying to earn another dollar in the same way, but that time you spent? It's gone. It wont come back. It can't be stolen, for it no longer exists.


So, to take this to its logical conclusion, since his time isn't being "stolen" because he already used it, he's less likely to make software in the future seeing that the attitude of the consumers is "it doesn't count as theft of service because he already put the work in".

You might get that killer app for free today, but what about tomorrow's killer app? Who is going to write that?

Comment Re:Piracy = Theft Analogy (Score 1) 432

GPL does make a point about charging for the software. It very specifically says that you MAY NOT charge for the software. It also specifically states that you may not charge to distribute, but that you MAY collect a small fee for the time and materials that might be consumed in reproducing that software (burning a CD or whatever).

No, it really doesn't. It says exactly the opposite of that, in fact - and there's nothing wrong with that. There's nothing immoral or incompatible with charging for your software.

Comment Re:Open Source (Score 0) 137

Oh great, a moron.

No, when they say "copy freely" they mean without restriction. Patent fees impose restrictions via cost, this is why FRAND (and software patents in general) is bad, particularly for standards.

I can copy open source code without restriction?

Cool! I'll roll some of that fancy GPLv3 code into my new product. It's a Tivo box. Awesome.

Oh you want my changes? Those are mine! You can buy my Tivo box though, it's cool.

See, I can overgeneralise and oversimplify too.

Comment Re:And this too shall pass away. (Score 1) 639

So, I'm not getting it. Funneling even more money into the government, where it has been proven to be wasted, is somehow better?

Well it's certainly wasted where it is now. Hoarding the money in tax havens and other such things essentially makes it useless to the economy. You want it to circulate through the economy to keep it working. Large spending programs are a way to do that (science and tech, education, welfare, infrastructure etc) by creation of jobs.

The other option would be considerably increased wages across the board and a vast increase in the minimum wage - the average wage for the middle class hasn't really moved in decades (proportionally to the cost of living), unlike the compensation for the super wealthy, which has skyrocketed. Great for them, but at the cost of stagnating the economy.

There's no simple answer, but low taxes on the wealthy is certainly not among the right options. It just siphons money away from where it does any good. It's like reducing the amount of blood you circulate in your body, keeping a large volume of it in a separate body that you can't use.

Comment Re:And this too shall pass away. (Score 1) 639

Social security does not effect the deficit at all?

Then why is the President warning us that if the debt ceiling is not raised, we won't make Social Security payments?

With he is lying, or you are wrong.

Give you a hint: future payments are not from invested money, but from current payments by new investors. Grandma and Grandpa are not paid by their money invested over the last 45 years of paying into SS, but by the current payments of their children and their grandchildren. THere is no lockbox.

I.e. how a Ponzi scheme works... Until there are not enough investors, then it collapses. In this case, we start cashing in the SS IOUs, forcing the government to issue bonds to pay those IOUs and thus impacting the debt, and why we need to raise the debt limit to cover the bonds.

We are at that tipping point right now, it will only get worse as the baby boomers retire.

Because the government has borrowed money from SS to pay for things, and thus when the payments need to be made the government needs to pay back what it borrowed... with more borrowing from somewhere else.

Social Security is paid into by those who claim the money back later - it's not something that "costs" the government in that sense, except that they borrowed from it and need to pay it back.

Comment Re:Not only NASA. (Score 1) 132

What? LOL! The creationists have had control for a VERY long time. The evolutionists are currently barking loudest, giving the impression that they have the upper hand. For some reason, science accepts certain theories as fact, even without real proof. Sounds to me like the same type of faith over which they berate creationists.

You clearly have no idea how science works, but I'll bite. What "certain theories" does science (as a concept I guess, but I assume you mean scientists here) accept as fact with no real proof?

Comment Re:And this too shall pass away. (Score 5, Insightful) 639

The United States government gets plenty of taxes already, thanks. What's the figure, something like one-third to one-half of all wealth created in the nation goes to the government? New taxes are not the solution. They aren't even the precipitate. Give them more money, and they will just waste it. Guaranteed.

Nonsense. Taxes in the US are at an all time low. The last time the wealth was this badly skewed in favour of the super rich with such ludicrously low taxes the Great Depression happened.

It's not a coincidence. Funnelling money into the hands of the few and crippling the middle and lower classes brings the economic engine to its knees.

Comment Re:And this too shall pass away. (Score 1) 639

the government has been spending nearly double what it earns for many years now, how is that not a spending problem? live within your means or pay the consequences later. It is almost time to pay the consequences and it is going to be severe no matter how you spin this one.

The problem is, the things they want to cut aren't going to do anything to help. The GOP wants to kill things like social security (which does not affect the deficit at all) and social programs and god damn funding for PBS, NASA etc while at the same time leaving the military spending alone.

That's like buying a car on credit and then "reducing your debt" by not borrowing money to take it to the car wash on the way home from the lot.

Comment Re:Xenon? (Score 5, Informative) 165

Xenon is easy to ionise - it's a large, diffuse atom with the outer electrons far from the nucleus. It's also inert and heavy, giving you a non-toxic, non-corrosive fuel with a high mass/charge ratio; ideal for an ion thruster.

If only it were cheaper to buy!

It's also not true that "nothing reacts with it". The lower end of group 18 does react with strong oxidisers and you can form (and isolate) crystals of XeO4 and so on. The closest to being truly "noble" gasses are helium and neon.

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