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Comment Re: Silicon Valley sucks (Score 1) 127

Ads are tried and true so it's hard to argue against it. Technology is often overlooked but making a scalable product at low cost is still highly non-trivial and that has driven internet businesses more than anything else. Yes these inane apps started up in SF really suck off open source and scalable technology and don't contribute much back, but that just proves how low-cost they are and thus how easily they can be profitable as long as they get enough eyes... When it come to business models it's hard to argue with money.

Comment Re: Bubble Company (Score 1) 200

I've heard a long time ago that they hired CMU robotics researchers with very attractive pay (1m+) to do driverless cars. While they still lagged behind Google, due to the transparency in academic research (i.e. everyone knows the core ideas) and the fact that cutting edge research moves much more slowly than people can copy it, their disadvantage isn't that high. But even that it's not very probable they can corner the market - if they're lucky they'll become the best but likely not a monopoly.

There's also this fact that at these levels, large companies in China can really compete quite well with a mixture of technical capability and strong governmental support. Even if Uber dominates US they'll have a hard time conquering the rest of the world.

Comment Re:I can't wait for this latest tech bubble to bur (Score 2) 39

You mean faster computers that actually power incredible computing pursuits? You know, those that actually run difficult algorithms for science rather than spending most of their CPU time on GUIs and making SQL queries in run-of-the-mill business software that you're probably writing for food.
You mean recent advances in machine learning, including a wide variety of applications in computer vision and natural language processing, more or less due to increased architectural support (improved database systems, distributed computing) and better algorithms?
You mean the considerably less-wasteful Bitcoin alternatives that can actually be better than a large part of the bloated and widely inefficient banking infrastructure?
You mean the abundance of information and knowledge on the internet, coupled with ever increasing capabilities to sift through useless content, and much easier scientific dissemination and collaboration?
You mean Linux that had very specific hardware requirements, but actually gained enough commercial support to get actual drivers?
You mean the better awareness of IP issues and maturing business models that support open source software?

I'm not saying it's a good state that a lot of these businesses rely on advertising and foolish VC money, which IMO are on the decline. But let's not equate advancing technology to running businesses. Looks like somebody just couldn't catch up with the world.

Comment Re: Seems reasonable (Score 1) 292

Child prostitution can be triggered by paying a senior high school student for sex. Basically it's a part of the rule of illegal to have sex with people under 18, consensual or not, already quite controversial. Moreover these are not rape charges, I don't except the man to be a threat of he leads an otherwise normal life. Ditto for pornography. If anything, continued harsh persecution is more likely to force him cause harm by being a mass killer.

Comment Re:Nothing? (Score 1) 429

"Turtles all the way down" is an argument against the necessity of "God" as a source of existence. Basically, we're standing on a turtle, and "God" is the second turtle. Why do we need 2 turtles? Why can't we just accept this turtle below our feet is the entire world? If there must be a second turtle, why can't there be a third or fourth one? And then, you know, it's turtles all the way down.

Comment Re:I disagree. (Score 1) 145

I guess he means the theoretical bases on which these systems operate has not improved much. It's the same old tricks hacked together at higher and higher complexity, and the best guidance is uninformed trial-and-error. Useful sometimes and at times an engineering feat, but there's no interesting science in it.

Comment Re:And this is the same for copyrights. (Score 1) 240

Although I hate copyright extensions, your argument is weak. Selling things based older productions is probably a sizable revenue stream for a company over its lifetime. There's copyright on derivative work, so a competitor can't beat you out in making a sequel. It can also snowball into franchise over which you have a monopoly. This gives more incentive to make stuff.

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