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Comment Re:Labor Participation Rate, the Unmentionable... (Score 2) 532

Well, Labor Participation Rate vs Unemployment is not just about people who stopped looking for a job, it is also about people who don't need a job, so it is not a particularly better metric.
Unemployment rate has always been "underreporting" by a margin that is open to debate. If this margin is relatively stable throughout the years, then unemployment rate is a good *comparative* tool. Do you have any sources that say that the current unemployment rate is more severely underreporting unemployment and thus not comparable to historic rates? If yes, then you have a point, otherwise.. no.

Comment Re:Only allow reviews from people who purchased. (Score 1) 106

No, this won't work. Sellers have groups (on FB or dedicated sites) where they organize people to buy their product for free or almost free (they provide a discount code) in exchange for a review. They don't usually tell you directly to give them a 4/5 star review (although I've seen that too), but tell you to contact them first if you are not happy and if you leave a 3 star or less review they simply don't give you any more free stuff... or worse!

When I say worse, this is an example recent experience of mine. I have a thing about exposing scams like that, so I joined a group to get a "Best Seller" pair of binoculars that was receiving suspiciously raving reviews, without paying full price. I reviewed it and, sure enough, it was really poor quality for the price (even magnification and effective aperture where nowhere near the specs), so I wrote a (rather generous in hindsight - probably because I had reviewed really horrible binoculars recently) very detailed and technical 3-star review that basically said these are worth less than half the price. I did get a message from the seller "thanking me for not posting the review", which is an interesting way of requesting I remove it, but that's it. Anyway, this review started to slowly get up-voted (about 1 vote per day) so it was on the front page after a few days. But one day, I see a dozen sudden downvotes, and the seller claiming I am a competitor in the comments (they actually claimed I own Agena Astro!) - they even messaged me to tell me I was reported for malicious slander to Amazon etc. So the review got buried. If you are wondering about the down-votes, I got emails from people whom the seller had asked to down-vote me (members of their review group), so that's how that works.

I don't think it is hard for Amazon to fix these issues. First of all, they should remove (or not "count") reviews that have used a promo code. That's the primary method these review groups work. Then completely ignore reviewers who drop-ship (another method) or work exclusively on promo codes - there are Top-100 or even Top-50 reviewers that are "serial reviewers", get everything for free with a promo code and always give 5* reviews (e.g. Top-50 on Amazon.co.uk). Lastly, run an analysis to identify downvoting/upvoting "rings", i.e. users that are asked to mass downvote legitimate reviews.

Up until a few years ago, I thought Amazon reviews were great at helping me figure out what to buy. Now, I only read reviews from items that are sold by Amazon directly, so that no seller has messed with them, the rest are not helpful at all.

Comment What? How is this possible? (Score 1) 29

I don't get it, this is the first time Apple does something like that. I have paid twice out of pocket to have my iPhone 4 and 4s replaced (there was one more replacement but within warranty), because of a well known issue (search about iphone 4 / 4s wifi grayed out) that Apple refused to acknowledge - their website instructions said "reset network settings" like that could do something about what we knew was a malfunctioning heat-sensor that disabled the wireless module (and was only actually enabled in firmware from a specific iOS version and on - you were fine if you never upgraded the original iPhone 4!). They have even voided the warranty of a 6 month Mac Mini with a failed motherboard, because the found "dust" (no cat hair or smoke, as it was a smoke/pet free home), and the owner of the Mac Mini just accepted that it was his fault!
So how come it is their fault for the first time? Are we not holding the battery wrong? Do we not have our central heating set too high? Are Apple sales slowing and they actually have to start behaving like other companies instead of treating their customers like they are lucky for the privilege of owning Apple products? After having seen the $300 "Designed by Apple" book come out just last week, I wouldn't have thought so...

Comment Not only that... (Score 3, Insightful) 2837

Not only that, but they pushed hard (with dubious means as we found out) to have Clinton win the nomination, when she is probably the "Democrat" that Democrat voters themselves like the least. And "like the least" is a euphemism when many outright hate her. ALMOST ANYONE else would have had an easy time against Donald Trump, but no, they didn't want people like Bernie etc, Clinton was the DNC's favorite gal...

Comment Re:Nothing (Score 1) 137

I have not confused anything, I have studied computer science and I am very aware of what AI in that context is (I have even built systems that are considered AI) and that is why my reply was "nothing", i.e. what AI actually is currently does not involve sentient machines that could run amok if we let them develop ciphers and start communicating.
And I am not outraged, I am simply underwhelmed and rather tired at reading sensational AI stories that are nowhere near as exciting as they are implying.
The term "AI" that you encounter every day around you is either science fiction or marketing.

Comment Nothing (Score 2, Insightful) 137

Nothing will go wrong. I was impressed by notions of "AI" when I was a kid, but after studying CS I usually skip "AI" articles since they always underwhelm me. "AI" is currently marketing speak, we are nowhere near something that is "AI" in the sense that you imply, or in the sense that I meant it as a kid.

Comment Talk about misleading title!!! (Score 3, Insightful) 50

iOS portrait mode means portrait vs landscape mode for desktop/apps, PERIOD.
Hmm, do you put a period after you've said period? Anyway, I digress...
If you wanted to use the word "portrait" instead of having a more accurate title like "fake bokeh" or "portrait photo background blurring" etc you could at least use "new portrait mode for camera app". This is supposed to be a site for nerds, know your crowd. Yeah, I know, I talk like I'm new here... ;)

Comment I live in the Uk and call BS (Score 0) 177

I've been living in the UK for the last three years an as I use a telescope I look at the weather daily. The national weather service barely gets a prediction correct FOR THE SAME NIGHT never mind days or years in advance! I am not kidding, there is something like an 80% or a bit more chance for clouds and a lower chance for precipitation, but the forecast only gives you slightly more information than that. Eg instead of 80/20 cloud odds, if the MET office thinks it will be cloudless, consider the odds to be something like 60/40 instead. The forecast for the next night is even less useful.
For example, 2 days ago it was telling me there was a zero chance of rain and the clouds would be gone within the hour. I took my scope out and had to drag it back in due to the zero chance rain that was dropping (perhaps the heart of gold was using the improbability drive?). If it wasn't clear, this was the within the next hour prediction, I.e. Weather practically right now...
If they could actually predict UK weather with any accuracy short term That would be a start. Now for 1 year later a forecast of "cloudy with a 50% chance of precipitation" would be correct most of the time, yet I would not call it a forecast.

Comment I've come to dread these events... (Score 5, Insightful) 142

I've tried using MacBooks, but they always had issues for me, so I go with (not necessarily new) Thinkpads for the road, but I mostly use my desktops anyway, and that's where I have a Mac Pro and a Mac Mini, which are pretty solid machines. Granted, the Mac Pro was too expensive, if my job did not pay for it I had calculated that I would have built it for less than half the price, but if you're not on a budget it is a good machine.
So, whenever there was new hardware introduced, specifically Mac Pro and Mac Mini I followed it, and if there was a good feature / speed increased introduced I would perhaps go for it (happened once with the Pro, twice with the Mini). But in 2013, it happened. They took their only "classic" workstation with multiple drive bays (I have 2 ssds and 3 hds right now), dual CPUs, PCI slots etc and "transformed" it into a cool looking yet useless to me cylinder.
Then with the Mac Mini, first they took away the option of getting any graphics other than Intel, then in 2014 they soldered the RAM and took away the option for a quad core!!!
So I dread the new announcements, perhaps a new Mac Mini single core. Or with an iPhone cpu... And a Mac Pro that is a cool black sphere... but you can't open it at all for stuff like adding RAM etc.

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