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Comment I think the answer is obvious (Score 2) 272

3D printing is still fiddly, complex, error-prone, expensive and slow.

FDM style printers (the cheapest kind) require wrapping your head around calibration, nozzle diameters, temperatures, slices, alignments, supports, bed heating, the properties of PLA / ABS and all the rest. If you're lucky you'll set the printer going and hours later your efforts will yield some crudely finished single colour part. If you're unlucky you'll come back to discover something that has skewed left, warped on its base, or turned into some dante-esque spider's web that has stuck to everything.

Maybe SLA is better? Well it certainly yields better parts for sure (assuming it cured properly, but then you also must have space for a wash station. And all the sticky, smelly gunk resins to work with that get on EVERYTHING. Beyond that you've got stuff like SLS, SLM etc where things get more interesting. But now we're talking industrial equipment with the costs and power consumption to match.

I think the most likely form of 3D printing to take off is one which hasn't gotten much press - laminate printers. The price has to come down much more than where it is to be consumer attractive but I think that's viable.

Comment No answer doesn't mean yes (Score 1) 587

Only one responded, the others didn't. That could have as much to do with who asked the question to who as it could to the question itself.

Anyway I expect that if this administration-to-be were to go down this path of fuckwittery they sure as hell wouldn't get any cooperation from any tech company. I expect their efforts wouldn't get much cooperation from anybody for that matter.

Comment Re:Still a need for what he was origally doing (Score 1) 74

Exactly. Maintaining phone firmware is an enormous drain on resources and generally a pain in the ass. Cyanogen had the capacity to streamline the process and do it cheaper and better than any in-house team and still make a profit. Instead they declared they would "destroy" Google. I bet interest in their business model virtually dried up over night after that - Google putting the screws on mobos or the mobos themselves choosing not to associate with such hubris.

Comment Re:Still a need for what he was origally doing (Score 3, Interesting) 74

The easiest way to turn CM into profit is to sign some contracts with phone manufacturers or network operators and produce versions of CM under a support contract. Cyanogen Inc actually did that with the OnePlus but almost immediately fell into a dispute with them because they'd also signed some exclusivity contract with a no-name phone maker for the Indian market. This dispute ended up with OnePlus rolling their own firmware. So Cyanogen simultaneously proved they had the technical prowess to produce commercial grade firmware and absolutely no business acumen to go with it causing the whole thing to collapse. After that little disaster they declared war on Google. They lost.

Comment Re:Still a need for what he was origally doing (Score 1) 74

Ubuntu's revenue comes from support and licensing. The free dist seeds their market, creating a community, demand, mindshare etc. These feeds back into support contracts and other revenue streams.

While the model isn't analogous for a phone firmware, I think Cyanogen Inc. could have made a go of it by taking the open source CyanogenMod and producing and supporting custom firmwares for phone manufacturers. They started doing that with the OnePlus, proving they were capable of it but almost instantly then proving how volatile they were by immediately entering into a contract dispute.

Then Cyanogen Inc made some disastrously fuckwitted statements about "destroying" Google by producing some kind of alternate services layer. They may as well have just tied scrap metal to their legs and jumped into the ocean at that point. It would have been cheaper.

Meanwhile CM has chugged along. It's working on CM 14.1 at the moment. If there is any doubt about its financing or branding I'm sure the community as a whole can just take themselves over to a new site. It might mean a month's worth of disruption but other projects did it.

Comment Re:Realistic (Score 1) 93

The Palm Pilot sold extremely well, in part because it was significantly cheaper than the Newton but also because as a PDA it was a very good device. If this is in doubt, look how many models came out over more than a decade.

It might not have been as mass market as smart phones but it still sold well enough to sustain a line of devices until 2011. It might even have made the leap to mainstream with smart phone devices powered by Palm's replacement OS, webOS, but HP (who acquired Palm) made a hash of the platform and it flopped. Yet I should add that an open sourced webOS still lives on in a number of smart TVs and other devices.

Comment Re:employee improvement plan (Score 1) 389

That was sarcasm, by the way. I know nothing about Amazon's employee improvement plan, but the general idea of giving extra assistance to employees who aren't performing as well as their peers is absolutely a good idea.

That depends one what "improve" actually means in Amazon compared to other workplaces. Amazon is well known for micromanaging its workers and treating certain employees (e.g. those in warehouses) extremely badly. It's not hard to see how they could abuse employees - making them work beyond what is reasonable, or pushing them out the door - under the guise of an "improvement plan".

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