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Comment Re:Roundup backpack=bad ? (Score 5, Interesting) 125

The problem is that neonicotinoids are about as close to an ideal insecticide as we could hope to have. They're effective on a broad spectrum of insects, they don't harm plants, and they're really quite safe around mammals. For example, dinotefuran has an oral and dermal LD50 in rats of > 2000mg/kg, is not known to be carcinogenic, and is not known to be a neurotoxin. It's also essentially non-toxic to birds, fish, and aquatic invertebrates (important because of chemical run-off.) I'm not saying I'd sprinkle it on my breakfast cereal, but I wouldn't get sick from it.

They just happen to be 50 times as lethal to bees as to any other insect. So even the lowest doses used to control economically damaging pests are still going to kill huge numbers of bees, because the tainted nectar and pollen that comes back with the bees feeds the colonies.

I really like the stuff for INDOOR control of greenhouse pests. Outdoors, I won't use it.

Comment Re:Cloud-connected means disposable (Score 1) 101

It's not their "fault" because they were under no contractual obligation to provide support. Why should they continue to make their expensive resources available for free, when they're not making them any money? Especially when they're running out of money and a sugar daddy like Fitbit shows up with a wad of cash.

This is textbook capitalism. Nobody sells you stuff in order to make you happy; they sell stuff in order to make money. Never, ever forget that.

Comment Re:Fitbit must die (Score 1) 101

Sorry, I'm calling 100% bullshit on this one.

The fitbit app has never asked for access to my contacts, and it would only request access if I asked it to "Add Friends" and explicitly tapped on the "Contacts" button. All the "friends" I've added have been done so without granting access to the whole contact list, I've simply typed in their email addresses. And it's never sought access to my "call history", or whatever other evil conspiracies you imagined it might have done when you typed etc., etc.

Now go be a good son. Give the fitbit back to your dad, apologize for being overly paranoid, show him how it works, and help him keep up his health.

Comment Re:so what? (Score 2) 101

The real issues I see are that fitness trackers [...] don't provide workout plans to meet the needs of the individual [...]

Everything else you said is spot on, but you missed on this one. If you're interested and motivated, the Fitbit app offers a few generic workout videos and plans, but they offer a "Fitstar Personal Trainer" app, which does provide personalized workout plans. Open the Fitbit app on your phone and tap the "Guidance" compass icon to get started. Once upon a time, many years ago, they would link you up with an actual human trainer, but I don't know what they offer now.

Comment Cloud-connected means disposable (Score 4, Insightful) 101

It's not Fitbit's fault; it's the entire business model of the Cloud. Sell some cool tech thing that's cloud-dependent, run low on cash because those servers aren't paying for themselves, get bought by a bigger company. Fitbit just knows how to play the game, for now.

Who's really to blame when you buy a cloud-dependent toy, with no service contract to guarantee cloud availability for the next 25 years? What other outcome were you possibly expecting to happen? The only rational question is, "how long will I get to play with my cool toy until the company pulls the servers down?" And you should factor that limited lifespan estimate into your purchase price.

Comment Re:Unless it costs more (Score 1) 130

The current processes work pretty well. My dentist can get me in the chair, pop in a tooth-colored filling, and get me out in less than 20 minutes, at which time I'm free to eat whatever I want, and it costs only a few hundred dollars. If I have to have a temporary tooth cap, wait ??? weeks for the regrowth to take place, make another appointment to get the cap taken off, pay the patent-inflated price for the magical tooth-growing sponge, and then pray I don't get tooth or bone cancer, I think I'd rather stick with the old fillings.

Submission + - Buh-bye, H-1B's 1

DogDude writes: From the Washington Post: Trump and Sessions plan to restrict highly skilled foreign workers. Hyderabad says to bring it on.
"Trump has described H-1Bs as a “cheap labor program” subject to “widespread, rampant” abuse. Sessions co-sponsored legislation last year with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) to effectively gut the program; Issa, a congressman with Trump’s ear, released a statement Wednesday saying he was reintroducing similar legislation called the Protect and Grow American Jobs Act."

Comment Re:Artistic control? (Score 1) 213

You're missing the fact that you can actually develop the film at home in your own darkroom, and have total control over the type of film, the chemicals used to develop it, the temperature of the chemical baths, under and over exposure, push processing and cross processing. Sure, most of these decisions have to be made in advance and apply to a while roll at a time, but 120 film on a 6x7 camera is only about 10 shots. Better yet, using a frame camera you shot individual shots on massive pieces of film and can develop it exactly the way you want.

Once you have the negative developed, it's child's play to scan it into a PC and do anything that could be done to a digital photo. Alternatively, spend a few hours in the darkroom developing prints the old fashioned way. You have quite a lot of control at the print making stage, from dodging and burning, contrast filters, toners (sepia, chocolate, etc)

Submission + - Intel Core i7-7700K Kaby Lake review: Is the desktop CPU dead? (arstechnica.co.uk)

joshtops writes: ArsTechnica has reviewed the much-anticipated Intel Core i7-7700K Kaby Lake, the recently launched desktop processor from the giant chipmaker. And it's anything but a good sign for enthusiasts who were hoping to see significant improvements in performance. From the review, "The Intel Core i7-7700K is what happens when a chip company stops trying. The i7-7700K is the first desktop Intel chip in brave new post-"tick-tock" world—which means that instead of major improvements to architecture, process, and instructions per clock (IPC), we get slightly higher clock speeds and a way to decode DRM-laden 4K streaming video. Huzzah. [sic] If you're still rocking an older Ivy Bridge or Haswell processor and weren't convinced to upgrade to Skylake, there's little reason to upgrade to Kaby Lake. Even Sandy Bridge users may want to consider other upgrades first, such as a new SSD or graphics card. The first Sandy Bridge parts were released six years ago, in January 2011. [sic] As it stands, what we have with Kaby Lake desktop is effectively Sandy Bridge polished to within an inch of its life, a once-groundbreaking CPU architecture hacked, and tweaked, and mangled into ever smaller manufacturing processes and power envelopes. Where the next major leap in desktop computing power comes from is still up for debate—but if Kaby Lake is any indication, it won't be coming from Intel.

Comment Re:Fixing this is too expensive (Score 5, Informative) 75

The problem is too expensive to fix, but not for the reason you mentioned.

Many passengers struggle with flying, due to inexperience, carelessness, distractions, or fear of flying, or they lack the mental capacity to understand everything they need to do. These people need the simplest possible way to access their flight info. That means helping them as much as possible by printing the booking code on the luggage tags, flight coupons, boarding passes, everything.

So far, it's much cheaper to accept the risk of a few people messing with the flight info, rather than dealing with millions of scared, confused, and/or angry travelers stuck in an unplanned layover because they didn't have the ability to access their connecting flight information.

That could change if someone figures out how to monetize this hack safely, but that's very unlikely. The booking code isn't the only security measure in place. The hackers can change a flight, but a passenger complaining at a gate will win out over an online change; anyone attempting to cash in on the fraudulently changed ticket risks felony theft and fraud charges.

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