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Comment Re:*sigh* (Score 1) 417

Somehow you dont hear so much derision about the "upgrade treadmill" from Linux / Mac users.

I seem to recall a fair amount of noise over, for example, Unity. But many users just picked some other fork and got on with their work. Windows users don't quite have that luxury. The major *nix players have long term support (LTS) releases which provide firm dates that facilitate planning. Let's not forget: "free."

It could also be due to the proportionality of use: so many more winboxes out there, so many more voices to be heard.

Mac users are, well, special. I don't have one (yet) so aren't fully qualified to speak here but it seems Apple does a better job of not releasing total cruft.

Comment Re:*sigh* (Score 1) 417

It was probably the most trouble free experience I've ever had with windows.

Wish I could say the same. I found XP Pro x64 the most neglected version of any Windows OS w.r.t. drivers (printer, spare NIC, ...) and most of the FOSS software I use. Of course I haven't used Win8...

Give me the 32 bit version or even Win7 any day. Except today--that machine is finally working and I'm not messing with it.

Comment Re:*sigh* (Score 1) 417

It doesn't have to be "old" hardware! We spent 5 figures just two years ago on a laser-based spectroscopic instrument for measuring trace gases and guess what? IT RUNS XP!

The manufacturer sent out a notice last month to the effect they were "finding a solution." This announcement comes as a genuine relief for them, I'm sure.

Comment Re:The big picture (Score 1) 312

How many ounces in a pound? Well, it depends on what you're weighing.

No, there is always 16 ounces in a pound regardless of what you are "weighing" (measuring the mass of). Perhaps you've conflated ounce with fluid ounce -- a distinct, though confusingly named, unit.

And yes, a mile is 5280 ft = 63360 inches. I don't know where you pulled "3mm shy of" from but if you're measuring in miles and worrying about being 3mm shy, you're doing it wrong.

Comment Re:Cranky for a military takeover, are we? (Score 1) 341

While I'm not qualified to comment on the legitimacy or not of attacks on Romney, I must point out that search phrase has some inherent bias.

And I wouldn't defer to the IRS as some absolute arbiter. These are the folks who decided to spend time investigating neighborhood groups applying for 501c4 status while declining requests to investigate juggernauts like Crossroads GPS, Priorities USA and Americans for Prosperity. Again, I'm not accusing or absolving Romney but the IRS seems to prefer path of least resistance.

Comment Re:in other words... (Score 1) 341

The political affiliation of who makes the argument doesn't really matter. GGGP's argument isn't really the same as Washington Monument Syndrome anyway.

If you cut past the hyperbole, it seems to say: politicians are more willing to enact broad cuts to 'social services' and other non-"defense" spending than to take the time to carefully evalute the effectiveness of all program spending and trim the (lobbyist-protected) fat. The joint strike fighter comes to mind though I'm sure some better examples could be found.

Comment Re:Instagram didn't replace Kodak (Score 1) 674

Careful, I heard RMS sleeps with a katana. No, seriously.

I think the interwebz is kind of like radio, at least in a few ways. You could operate a paywalled website (XM, Sirius) but you won't have much market share. Or you could operate a neutral, informative, original website (NPR, BBC) but only weirdos will visit. Or you could broadcast whatever "popular" cruft the people are clamoring for (any station playing Miley Cirus) and be wildly successful but selling advertising time/space.

We all seem to agree this article highlights the same issue we've had with virtually all technological advances: increased efficiency putting people out of a job. I fail to see how the micropayments idea would work at all; it would just be interpreted (probably rightly so) as holding back "progress."

Comment Re:victory against science (Score 1) 510

Oops premature submit. I meant to mention I wholly support the idea of labeling not because I believe GMOs are evil or the make me "feel bad" but because of those other, demonstrated harms I mentioned:

* Unfair patent litigation against farmers who crops were contaminated
* Inevitable dilution of adjacent non-GMO crops
* Acceleration of pesticide resistance

Since the jury is, at least in my opinion, still out on the ultimate safety of these crops I don't bother claiming food safety as a primary reason for my supporting labels. It's not like adding that information would cause the economy to collapse; 60+ nations already require labeling.

And though it's not related, I'd also support additional labeling for things like potassium, phosphorous, etc when there's a valid reason. Yes, even if it's only important for some minority of the population. It could even be compromised like, 'consumers can assume 0.5% of constituent X but higher levels must be on the label'.

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Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards. -- Aldous Huxley