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Submission + - Congress Can't Afford Affordable Health Care. Can You? 2

theodp writes: The Affordable Care Act was to have required Congress to purchase coverage on the law's new health insurance exchanges without the generous subsidy they enjoy for their current coverage. But affordable health care, as the fine print in the approved rate sheet linked to from NY Governor Cuomo's press release reveals, can mean annual premium of as much as $35k for a family of 3 (for a 'platinum' plan). So, Congress was no doubt relieved to learn last week that they won't be eating their own health care dogfood after all — the U.S. Office of Personnel Management has decided to allow the government to subsidize coverage for its employees on the exchanges. If you're curious, plug your numbers into Covered California's insurance cost calculator to get an idea of how you might fare!

Submission + - Mozilla Starts Hunting Down Software Bugs to Increase the Security of Firefox OS

SmartAboutThings writes: Mozilla and BlackBerry as partners? We don’t hear that too often. But this time they have joined together to develop and advance Peach, an open source tool that would allow them to discover software bugs before users are at risk. Peach has been created by Michael Eddington of Deja Vu Security and the development of a third major version has started more than eight years ago, in 2004. Mozilla has already used Peach to detect problems in essential HTML5 features like image and audio/video formats, fonts, WebGL, WebAudio and WebRTC. This means that we will get a safer Firefox browser and Firefox OS, since the mobile operating system is based on the HTML 5 structure.

Comment Re:NPR? (Score 1) 163

>>>you'd think they'd choose something other than NPR trying to mute gay bashes as an example

The Maine citizens who produced the "marriage is for heterosexuals" advertisement doesn't have a right to free speech? They deserved to have their ad taken-down from youtube??? This is the anti-free speech position you are adopting?!?!? Not very progressive of you.

Comment Re:Right & Wrong (Score 1) 545

Movie business model:
1) Make a trailer that looks cool
2) Fill the other hour and 29 minutes so the trailer seems to have had a plot
3) Hope people pile into theaters on opening night, before word gets out that it sucks
4) Buy TV advertising to tell the non-moviegoing crowd you can have it at home
5) Make sure the advert contains only those parts of the trailer that list the headline stars
6) Hope people pile into something other than a video rental store to buy before word gets out that it sucks

In other words, it's the world's only product you are expected to purchase sight-unseen with no refunds. Sure you can buy other things unseen, but this is the entire business model.

Comment Re:Looking forward... (Score 1) 213

I would say that the biggest change that DSL/cable brought is that you got a connection that was always on with a flat monthly fee which transformed it into something that was always there, instead of something you had to actively enable each time you wanted to use it, and having to worry about staying on too long because it would rack up a huge phonebill.

Comment Re:When Sony exert less control than you (Score 1) 154

What does Apple's App Store offer that XBox Live doesn't?

You can buy games. You can buy add on content. You can buy media. You can even download demos and upgrade them in-game to the full game.

The only benefit I can see to the App Store is that I can see in dollars what something costs.

Comment Re:External Forces = Pressure (Score 2, Informative) 383

  1. Yes, some people are stupid. All the more reason to design phones -- which are commonly slipped into pockets -- to survive various sorts of non-ideal treatment.
  2. If you are designing a system for a non-technical crowd, you need to give it relatively wide tolerances. Non-technical folks may very well believe that since a commercial shows a netbook being stuck in someone's back pocket, the netbook can survive being sat on. Warnings are insufficient: "Nobody ever reads the manual." If a device must be treated with the utmost care, it does not belong in the hands of the average consumer, who will undoubtedly mistreat it.

Again, it is a matter of engineering. Consumers mistreat their devices. The more portable the device is, the more people mistreat it. A cell phone is extremely portable, and if you designing a cell phone, you should design it to withstand the conditions that people subject other cell phones to: pockets, bags/briefcases/backpacks, dropping, hot environments, vibrations, dust, moisture, etc. No, it does not need ludicrous tolerances; it does not need to operate underwater or inside a volcano, but if it stops working because it was stored in a pocket on a 95 degree day, it is a poorly designed phone.

Comment Re:Profits, but for whom? (Score 1) 624

It's an existing mechanism for inhibiting John Galt from excessive, unwarranted greed, and it can be used to redistribute wealth in a directed fashion.
The ability to effectively, purposely redistribute wealth to meet certain social needs is beyond the capacity of any human institution. Humans are flawed, and the institutions we create are flawed.
The chaos created by countless individuals making decisions in their own interest is preferable to the ruin created by arrogant attempts to directly dictate results through wealth redistribution. Good results often come from the former, achieving the latter is beyond human capacity.

For example, to fund a health care system that provides health care for all. Western civilization would still be a good idea.

I suggest you emigrate to a country that has the type of civilization you prefer. If it doesn't exist, there's probably a solid reason for that, given the number of countries out there and the length of recorded human history.

The Military

Submission + - Did Iran Use Photoshop to boost missile threat?

StupidPeopleTrick writes: "From the Jerusalem Post: Iranian state news outlets said the picture showed four long- and medium-range missiles lifting off in the heart of the Iranian desert on Wednesday, but Charles Johnson of the Little Green Footballs blog wrote, "At least one of the photographs released today by Iran and published by an unquestioning Western media has been Photoshopped.""

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