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Comment Re:What?! (Score 1) 642

Pure democracy fails, fails quickly, and terrifyingly transitions through ochlocracy to some form of autocracy.

You seem to think this is a guaranteed transition, with time frames no more than one or two generations. Care to show at least some examples? Specifically, examples where the transition into autocracy was terminal? Once you're into examples, feel free to demonstrate how it is not just examples, but a rule.

There is a reason that our Republic has 'undemocratic' elements.

You - just like almost every American it seems - seem to conflate direct democracy with any democratic system. There are multiple other approaches, and generally, a democracy is considered one if it has democratic decision making systems in the key components of the government. The elements you refer aren't so much undemocratic as they are designed to keep the democratic system from being gamed by small interests that do not represent the will of the populous.

Comment Re:How is this the opposite situation? (Score 1) 212

Marketing very specifically targets the fuzzy side of the human personality to influence decision making. In other words, Marketing is: "Join the market leader to transform your business." Marketing is about creating interest, creating basic awareness, and instilling the idea that you need something. Ever notice how ads rarely even tell you what a product does? That's by design. Actually selling the product requires moving from interest to a decision that you need to spend money on it now.. And while Sales starts with very much the same thing as marketing, it at some point has to transition into addressing specific needs of the person in front of you.

So, again - marketing is a tool you use to sell your product. So is support, PR, R&D, and, by definition, sales. But it isn't HOW you sell.

Comment Re:Wait? You didn't talk to marketing? (Score 4, Insightful) 212

You realize that one of the key purposes of marketing is to determine if a product is even marketable right?

HELL no. In my experiences, marketing people have no idea whether a product is marketable. The best they can do is figure out if a product is similar to another already successful product, and then tell you whether your new product will fit into the known market. That's it. They're fundamentally incapable of judging new markets, or even under-served markets.

Are you sure you will even have customers?

That should hopefully be the impetus behind even creating the product in the first place. Relying on marketing afterwards is putting the cart before the horse.

What features in your product are they most concerned with?

Customers can't tell you what they need. At best, they'll tell you what they want. Good marketing shapes the want, and leaves the need to product management.

Why would they choose your product over a competitors?

That's the job of the sales team.

Are there even any competitors yet, or are you establishing a new market? Which companys could potentially become competitors?

That's all competitive analysis, and has little to nothing to do with marketing. Your sales team needs to be doing this.

A sales executive would probably be more useful at this point.

Pretty much. Get a good sales exec, and worry about marketing once you have your sales team in place.

Comment Re:How is this the opposite situation? (Score 2) 212

Yeah... about that. I'm currently on the technical side of the marketing equation (I support software that is big in marketing and sales analytics). And the problem is forever the same: how do you know what marketing resulted in a sale? Yes, you can tie a lead to a specific campaign, and track that lead through to the sale, but the reality is that it is never that clear cut. That email campaign someone responded to? Might have just come at the right time, when they were looking to buy anyway. That web page someone landed on before buying a product? Again, it's hard to quantify how they actually made the decision. This is especially true for marketing that creates mindshare, but not a direct sale. Do Superbowl ads work? Based on how much money is spent on them, they better. But I don't think many things can be tracked to them, especially big budget items that don't have a good time correlation with marketing campaigns.

Marketing is still faced with the problem that 50% of it is effective, but no one knows which 50% it is.

The argument that the field is largely non-technical and therefore some how foreign to you is both wrong and unimportant.

Errm, what? Good marketing IS a very non-technical field. Look into what goes into a good marketing campaign, and none if it is tied to a technical field. And his realization is absolutely important, because it means that he knows his weaknesses.

What you should focus on is hiring people who understand the field

So far, so good....

and can use, shape, and sell your mass marketing product

Errm, again - what? Use? I've yet to see a marketing person understand how to use the product they sell. Same for Sales people. I would argue that it seems actually to be somewhat detrimental to their business. And you're also assuming that this is a mass-market product.

In other words this challenge is the same as any other business, learning how to successfully grow your business.

Marketing is a tool to grow business. It's not HOW you grow your business. You grow your business by convincing more people that they need your product. I hope you see the difference.

Comment Re:Musk isn't doing himself any favors here (Score 1) 841

General purpose: the ability to perform most of the common tasks in an effective manner. Now look up what the average car usage is, what the 90th percentile usage is, what the common ranges are, and what the common behavior is for 500-mile drives. Is it the right car for EVERYONE? No, and no one is arguing that. But it is very, very good for all but a few types of drives, which some people might never go through in their entire life.

The only difference is that Ferrari owners don't pat themselves on the back about how environmentally responsible they are by owning one.

I take it you also complain that if a solution isn't perfect, no one should even attempt solving a problem? Electric cars have a much higher environmental upside than gas-powered cars. The very simplest use-case where that applies is for anyone with solar cells: the car essentially becomes the giant-ass battery that is needed to make ubiquitous solar cells really, really useful. Whether someone is smug about that has nothing to do with the car, and all to do with the person.

You still haven't made a case for why the car is bad.

Comment Re:Musk isn't doing himself any favors here (Score 1) 841

Jealous much? The Tesla isn't targeted at people who spend $10k on a car. It is targeted at people who pay between $50k and $100k on a car. At that point, it is a VERY competitive car.

And I accomplish more environmentally by living close enough to my workplace to commute by bicycle.

Congratulations. We're talking about cars, not about bicycles.

The Tesla is an expensive toy for enviro-posers.

Do you also complain about people buying Ferraris being performance-posers?

Comment Re:But not the constitution (Score 4, Insightful) 597

It's more complicated than that. The founders recognized that a nation is partially defined by how much control it has over its borders. This includes controlling what goes through the border. And in order to do that, it is necessary to be able to inspect anything. And in order to do that... well, you have to be able to do it without something exactly straddling an imaginary line. And now you're down into implementation details that have nothing to do with the constitution, SCOTUS or anyone else at that level.

Go write your congress critters that a border that is 100 miles wide makes a mockery of the spirit of the law, while still obeying the letter of the law. But that's the only way you're going to change that.

Comment Re:Marginalization. (Score 1) 270

Ah.... I see what's going on. You're part of that group of people who feel that because they can no longer tell people what is right and what is wrong, they are now marginalized and persecuted. Let me guess - you are white and male, yes?

The point is that many of us don't want to live in a society where deviancy is the accepted norm. Legalizing animal porn takes that away from us.

Now it all falls nicely into place. Using animal porn (I assume you're actually referring to bestiality, instead of just images of horses fucking each other) as a fulcrum, you're arguing for deviancy to be forcefully removed from society. Except that you don't want to stop just with bestiality, as you clearly have issues with fat people, BDSM and quite a few other things. And not only do you have issues with quite a few things, your goal is to have a world without any content you object to. Now what would be necessary to achieve that? You having total control over everyone's life. In other words, a totalitarian state. I know, I know. It's all for the greater good - how could anyone object? And those who do object are deviants anyway who want to oppress you, so they can be expelled to some far off land. I hear Siberia is great for that. It's not like you're actually killing them. I mean, except for the truly dangerous deviants. Those deserve to be killed.

Yeah, I know your type. Thank god you don't have the charisma necessary to actually rally enough like-minded people around you and enough political skills to implement your ideas, because otherwise Europe might have to repay its WW2 debt to the US sooner rather than later.

Comment Re:Science time. (Score 2) 270

Do you have some science for that?

No, but enough anecdotes to be confident of the outcome of any study that would look into this. The exception would be homosexuality, which has been widely studied and found to be very normal - both in external behavior, as well as frequency across time, religions, social structures, genders and even species.

It seems like you've made a political decision here, which is that every behavior should be accepted.

No, the decision here is that behavior which has no visible impact on society at large should be accepted, and not be subject to random moral and religious whims.

Some of us want our kids to grow up in a world where only healthy behaviors exist.

Define healthy. Now compare and contrast that definition with the one from 10, 20, 30, 40, 100, 500, 1000, 5000 years ago. Considering we're still around, I'm pretty sure that your definition of "healthy" is irrelevant to the advancement of mankind and society. Finally, you want your kid to grow up surrounded by only healthy behavior? I suggest you kill off every other human being, because that's the only way your vision is going to come to pass.

We want people to go experiment elsewhere, and face the consequences of their experiments without dragging us down with them.

Sweet! That's what we all want. Oh, you mean that "elsewhere" does not include the privacy of ones bedroom? Or consensual acts between adults?

Wow, so you're actually not at all saying that you're ok with people experimenting elsewhere. You actually want to control what people do. Here's a thought (and keep in mind you're a significant minority regarding your particular definition of "healthy"): move to an island somewhere, and be a control group there. Leave the rest of us to live our lives, and stop butting into consensual acts taking place between adults in a place you have no access to.

Comment Re:Almost right..... (Score 1) 172

n the article at the top of this discussion, the least restrictive (that is, the most permissive) license choice given was CC-BY. It - and indeed, all three licenses listed - require that attribution be preserved as a condition of reuse.

Thanks - I wasn't aware of that point.

For the purposes of disseminating and reusing scientific knowledge, it is far more constructive for papers to be gratis than libre.

Very nice summary. I think I'll re-use that under CC-BY-NC-ND. ;)

Comment Almost right..... (Score 5, Insightful) 172

Science researchers live and die by their publications. Their papers are their currency. To let someone completely modify it and not even attribute it back to them is near professional suicide, unless you're already so famous that you don't need additional papers. As a result, you're right, they don't care that much whether journals are open access or not. They really care about whether publishing their paper somewhere is going to help their career, or hurt it. The first license is at best not going to help, at worst going to hurt it. That leaves the other two, with the final one being the one that guarantees that your name will stay attached to it, and that it will stay as they wrote it.

Note that even the final license let's anyone view it, download it and pass it around. That's pretty damn good open access, and exactly what is needed. The rest is just what the scientists want to see happen to their paper.

Comment Re:s/open democracy/participatory republic/ (Score 4, Informative) 45

Nonsense. Read up on what a republic is, what a democracy is, the Federalist Papers (and read all of them, not just the 2 lines your favorite site fed you) and something about the context of when the constitution was written.

The US is a constitutional republic. Congratulations, so is France, Germany, China, Russia, the ex-USSR, Egypt, and a whole host of others. There is nothing more common than a constitutional republic in the world of national governments. What is also true is that the US is a representative democracy, a smaller subset of the super set of republics. This can be distinguished from direct democracies (which are also republics, and can be constitutional), or binding representation, (which are also republics).

Again, there is absolutely NOTHING special about the US being a republic.

The Founders explicitly shied away from establishing a democracy for the simple reason that democracies do not scale beyond a small collection of city states.

And if you'd read the Federalist Papers instead of just parroting someone else, they are EXPRESSLY referring to a direct democracy not scaling. After the initial definition, they just refer to democracies, while implying "direct democracies".

Open government? Democracy? That's a recipe for totalitarianism -- because only the strongest consensus builder can assert control to get anything done and few, if any, checks and balances can be imposed or enforced.

Congratulations. You discovered the principal flaw of democracy. You're only about 300 years late to the party. Voltaire has a nice discussion around what makes a ruler legitimate. You might want to look into it. Once you do, you'll also realize that the US was subject to the same risk from the day it became a nation, because it operates on exactly the principles you decry: openness in operation, democratic election of legislators and executives, and a requirement for consensus-building to operate.

Yes, it's just semantics. But it bothers me because the trend seems to be define things in such a way until only a very small and very vocal minority is allowed to participate in government. Of course, they do it because they are the only ones who truly understand how the founding fathers wanted to run things, and they are the only ones who can save the nation. Now where have I heard that before....

Comment Re:If there is no oversight.... (Score 1) 800

Al-Qaeda isn't an army, it's a terrorist organization. They conduct terror, not warfare.

Then why are we at war with them? (Yes , it is a rhetorical question).

But you don't have to prove anything, right? I mean you just known once you see their Al-Qaeda membership card :)

Of course! It shows up on the drone video display. That's why we don't have any accidents bombing weddings and similar things. (Yes, it is sarcasm).

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