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Comment That's here not there (Score 1) 135

You know what, I had a young software engineer from Africa (a new graduate from one of their schools)

So that was here then.

I've also worked with some fellow programmers from India who were excellent. In America.

But that is totally irrelevant to the story, about the workers *IN INDIA* being quite horrible - which was also my experience when working with any team that dealt with coding outsourced there.

It's almost like the really good developers don't stay where they are, and go to first world countries to develop. Completely validating the story. HMM.

Comment Re:Burn it up??? WTF?? (Score 1) 148

I do also like one of the previous ideas about shuttling it over to the moon. I just question how much energy it would need to overcome earths gravity and break free from it's orbit. It is a bit massive.

Well, it's already moving at about 70% of escape velocity. With something like an ion engine and plenty of time, I don't see any reason the remaining delta-vee couldn't be added.

Comment Re:Just needs a little nudge. (Score 1) 148

It's an interesting idea, but it would be costly. I suspect at the end of the day it would probably be cheaper to build a Lunar satellite that retrofit ISS. Basically you would need to add a lot more shielding, and I have my suspicions that would be difficult to accomplish.

Honestly, while it doubtless costs and will continue to cost a lot to maintain, maintaining it is still cheaper than (eventually) building a new orbiter. Obviously there are finite limits to how long anything habitable can remain in space without significant overhaul, but as the article says, 2024 is a policy limit, not an engineering one.

As to a lunar orbiter, I think it's a damned fine idea. Figure out how to build it in modules, and have robots or remote control piece it together. If you could get that kind of technology down pat, you could basically build orbiters for Mars or beyond, send them ahead of any manned mission, and thus you could significantly decrease the amount of supplies needed for the actual manned mission itself.

Comment Re:Good (Score 1) 241

I actually favor the British model of very short "series", rather than 22-24 episodes per season. Let's be honest, when you have to write that many 48 minute episodes you're going to run dry in the idea department very quickly. The genius of something like Fawlty Towers is that you only have to write six scripts for a series, meaning you're not stretching for ideas. Imagine having to write 20-odd Fawlty Towers scripts, and assuming it's a hit and is renewed, that you have to do that for possibly five or six or more seasons.

Even the best shows will tend to run out of steam before they reach 100 hundred episodes. There's just no real way to keep any story going that long. You'll lose writers, even show-runners, and even where you can keep stable production and writing teams, and assuming you don't lose actors (or, as with The Walking Dead, you just wantonly kill them off in place of actually having to write anything good, preferring shock to substance), it gets damned hard.

I think Breaking Bad had it just about right, with an average of 13 episodes per season (though the last one had sixteen as I recall), and still managed to keep quality pretty high. If they had had to push that up over 20, they would have written budget and writing limits, much as happened with The Walking Dead. I see no reason however why you can't tell a story in a more British-style short series. Broadchurch did it in 8 episodes per series. You get to have a story arc without the filler episodes, which I felt often detracted from series like the X Files and Deep Space Nine.

Comment Re: Not everyone is happy... (Score 1) 103

Copyright licensing is ONLY assignable in writing.

Copyright is only assignable in writing. The law doesn't require that copyright licenses be formal, written documents. Courts have upheld verbal and even implied licenses. This is a very good thing for open source, actually, since hardly any projects get written licenses from contributors. The mere act of sending a pull request (or sending a patch to a mailing list, or...) is taken as an implied license of the author's contribution, under the license or licenses that the project is using.

Also, good luck getting approval from all 400 - after 20 years some are going to be dead.

That only matters if the heirs object. In this case it's hard to see why they would. The only rational (and I use the word loosely) motivation I can see is a deep-seated dislike of the GPL, since the only real effect of this license change will be to make it completely clear that GPL programs can link OpenSSL.

Comment Re: Will increase risks of cargo hold fires (Score 1) 254

"There are known knowns. There are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we now know we don't know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we do not know we don't know." - Donald Rumsfeld

But are there unknown knowns? Are there things we know but don't know that we know?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Comment Good (Score 3, Interesting) 241

The film and TV industry have been in a stasis for decades. TV, in particular, hasn't really changed significantly since the early 1960s, and Hollywood has basically functioned the same way since the collapse of the Studio System. It's time for a big shake up and if companies like Netflix and Amazon can deliver that shakeup, then so be it.

Comment Re:Lock her up already (Score 1) 84

Tax write-off. He knows the shares are worthless, so might as well realize the loss and use it to offset gains elsewhere.

That makes no sense. Effective tax management means finding ways to report every possible loss, not creating actual losses just so you can report them. Creating $100 in actual losses to offset $100 in gains elsewhere lowers your tax liability by somewhere between $15 and $40, depending, which means you're actually throwing away $60-$85 in the process. Better to keep the gain and pay the tax.

There may be reasons to want to realize the loss *now*, rather than in the future, but that could have been done by selling the shares for more money -- assuming buyers could be found. Perhaps Murdoch believes that no one would be willing to buy his shares for more money? That seems unlikely. Hell, I'll give him $2. I have no reason to believe that the shares are worth that much, but the odds that they are are probably higher than the odds that I'm going to win the lottery and I have bought a lottery ticket a time or two.

Something else is going on here. Perhaps Murdoch has a personal friendship with Holmes, or some other non-financial motivation. But it makes no sense to artificially inflate your real losses in order reduce your tax liability, because the reduction in tax liability will always be less than the losses.

Comment Re:Then why just 8 countries? (Score 3, Interesting) 254

Let's assume this is a real threat And obviously it is doable, you could open up an ipod, rip out the guts, and put other stuff in its place. Why just 8 countries then? If its a real threat, its a global threat. Its not all that hard for someone to fly to another country first and then travel from an allowed airport. If this is a real threat, it should be from all airports. Otherwise its just games.

I flew from San Jose, CA to Salt Lake City, UT on Friday last week. I was "randomly" selected for slightly-enhanced screening, even though I was going through the TSA Pre-checked line -- and so were the two people before and after me. In this case the screening enhancement was to apply a bomb sniffer to all of my electronic devices, after they'd been xrayed. So, based on what I saw, at that airport on that day, the TSA had turned the random selection probability way up (perhaps 100% -- all five of the people I saw go through were "selected") and implemented a specific check for bombs in electronic devices.

So it appears to me that the TSA may actually have responded across all US airports, though not with more screening, not a device ban.

Comment Re:Wow (Score 1) 324

That's a neat trick, unless they mean their IDEA of their computer rather than the physical hardware.

If it rendered the computer unusable, then that's the same thing from the user's point of view, who then has to spend money to have someone fix their computer — money they may not have.

Windows is shitty, not malicious.

Uh, no. It's spyware which cannot be disabled. That's not the same as eating your data, but it is malicious.

Comment Re:ATM decline (Score 1) 329

Contrast that with an ATM where you have to hunt for your bank's machine or face an extortionate $2 charge to withdraw from a rival bank's machine.

My credit union belongs to an ATM co-op, you insensitive clod! I can deposit or withdraw money all over the place without any fees. Lately all the ATMs take cash without an envelope and count it for you while you wait, so I have no qualms about doing so, either. Maybe your bank is just shit.

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