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Comment Re:Wyoming = big coal country (Score 1) 297

Wind power in particular could also be a great way to ensure that grazing rights on lands are maintained, since there's no reason why a wind farm and ranching would have to be incompatible, and with the land already being several stages away from being pristine, no reason not to continue to leave grazing rights.

Comment Re:i/o ports and support (Score 1) 74

The Pie has FreeBSD and other Linux distro support and lots of i/O to hook up other peripherals.

And I was running Ubuntu 14.04 LTS on a Beagle Bone Black in April of '04 (although its userland was running on a somewhat back-versioned kernel for a couple months until the guy doing the kernel ports got the proper one fully ported).

The Black is not the first Beagle Bone version, either, and it was running Debian Linux from the first time I encountered it. It has lots of I/O hookup opportunities - including onboard USB, Ethernet, video, and lots of GPIOs that can be configured to provide several serial ports and a number of buses, in addition to lots of wiggle wires. And you can stack peripheral boards on it, as well.

Plug in a wall wart, USB hub, keyboard, mouse, monitor, (and, if 4 or 8 Gigabytes of file systems feels too cramped, a USB drive or mount a filesystem from a fileserver). Bingo: a full-blown desktop system with about the power of a cellphone and smaller than a pack of cigarettes (excluding all the stuff you plugged into it, of course).

Which is not to say it's the best choice. it's just one I happen to be familiar with. There are a number of single-board machines out there. Cellphone processor technology is too powerful, cheap, and available to NOT be plowshared.

Comment Re:Hopefully It's The UI Design and Privacy Teams (Score 1) 154

I would fire the guy who made the registry to begin with. It was always a bad idea.

The registry as originally created was actually a great idea. Every program still used ini files for it's own settings, but you had the registry, very small at the time, as a sort of "global ini file" for things like file associations that needed to be centralized. A lightweight DB-style approach was safer for third parties to edit than a tree of text files - it actually limited the damage of an installer bug.

Then some asshole got the idea to move all program settings into the registry, and a ton of OS settings that could have stayed in ini files, and the downhill slide began. By the era of Win95 it had gone to a very bad place, and never really recovered.

Comment Re: The death spiral is continuing. (Score 1) 154

Obviously, your family members don't do any real work.

You'll find that's common for kids and retirees.

Meanwhile, in the office, Apple laptops are the norm in the tech industry. Boggles my mind, since they don't even have docking stations, and the battery life is about half of what I get, but there it is. What I've been seeing for years is 90% Apple, 5% Windows, 5% Ubuntu.

Comment Re: The death spiral is continuing. (Score 1) 154

What percentage of PCs don't run Windows?

Where I work, one of the "big 5" tech companies, about 5% do run Windows. That's a higher percent then you'll find at Google or (obviously) Apple. Windows is vanishing from tech companies. That's a good sign that in a generation it will be vanishing everywhere else.

Comment Re:Now how about... (Score 1) 110

Tell me more about how brown people can't solve their own problems, but they can only be solved from the outside. Do you have more details about your Final Solution to the India problem?

India is an emerging economy. Change takes time, but their economy is growing at twice the rate of the US economy, and unlike Chine their manufacturing base is for local consumers, not exports. They're certainly capable of becoming a modern industrialized nation, and have come a long way along that path in the past 20 years. They're certainly moving faster than we did in our industrial revolution.

Comment Re:What complete nonsense (Score 1) 287

The asteroid belt make no economic sense until there's already a thriving economy in space. Fortunately there are plenty of asteroids made of useful stuff very near Earth (not that I would consider nickel-iron "useful stuff" in this context).

An asteroid that you can make rocket fuel from, dragged into high Earth orbit, will be commercially viable once the cost of getting stuff into orbit drops enough.

Comment Re:What complete nonsense (Score 2) 287

You don't need to smelt it: smelting is a purification process. But this particular asteroid is worthless.

The first asteroid of commercial value will be a CHON asteroid very close to Earth . Moved into high orbit and used to make rocket fuel, it's a fundamental missing piece of a space economy. (Plus, the only way to ever get the fuel to move the first asteroid is if that asteroid is made of fuel). Naturally, automated robotics has a way to go first, but automated robotics seems very plausible these days.

The you want an aluminum asteroid, not a nickel-iron one. The first ship built mostly in space will be built mostly of aluminum (well, it will be mostly fuel like any rocket, but then the aluminum).

Comment Re:What complete nonsense (Score 1) 287

"Helicopter money" and "QE" are not some sort of opposite or choice. QE is the latest form of printing money. Want to give helicopter money out? It needs to come from somewhere - taxes, borrowing, or QE. Government spending was massive during the great recession, and QE helped pay for it.

The trade off is "helicopter money" vs "bank bailouts". Bush and Obama both chose bank bailouts. Almost 2 trillion worth. They could have given about $5000 to every American instead. Either way, though QE would have paid for it.

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