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Comment Tomography (Score 1) 37

They basically took a CT scan (computed tomography) using radio waves instead of x-rays.

Tomography has been around for over 80 years. It's why there's no lens when you have a traditional x-ray taken. You just fire the RF rays in a uniform direction (in this case the single WiFi course acts as a point source with all rays radiating radially), and capture them using a flat photographic plate (or in this case, by moving the WiFi receiver around on a plane). What they're doing isn't even as sophisticated as a CT scan because without moving the RF source as well, they can't capture 3D information.

Comment Re:Well that didn't take long (Score 1) 207

Didn't take long for the "internet racist" to show their ugly faces. I almost feel sorry for them.

You mean racists like folks who advocate putting quotas on how many Asians are accepted to universities and high-paying jobs because they tend to do better than whites? Affirmative action against whites I can kinda understand. The operating premise being that in the past whites obtained their power, influence, and money partially by repressing minorities. And that the aftereffects of those past transgressions still slightly influence people's positions in society, so a counter-influence is needed to level the playing field. But Asians historically were one of those repressed minorities. Applying affirmative action against them just exposes you as a racist - someone who wants other people's position in society to be determined not solely by their ability, but partially by their race according to your unsubstantiated prejudices (in this case, that all races should be equal in everything, even if they're really not).

Despite what I just wrote, I actually agree with what California is doing with Airbnb. If you browse through their listings, the vast majority of properties are listed by landlords doing short-term rentals as a business. Not homeowners renting out their home while they're on vacation. If it's the home you live in with your personal items holding great sentimental value, you can rent it out to whomever you want. If you're only comfortable with people of the same race as you being in your home, then so be it. But if it's a second (or third, or tenth) house you rent out as a business, and your only attachment to the furnishings is their cash replacement value, then anti-discrimination statues should apply.

Comment Re:Literally in the Summary (Score 5, Informative) 279

"The most common reason they gave for their departures was workplace mistreatment."

Motherhood is one factor, but I hesitate to go there first because there is still such a problem with harassment in tech.

Congratulations. You've just demonstrated the anti-male bias OP was implying exists in these types of reports. That statement from TFA applies to both female and male employees who left their job.

If you dig up the actual report, you'll find that men left due to unfairness/mistreatment more than women - 40% vs 31%. You read the general stat and assumed it indicated a problem with how women are treated, when in fact it's men who more often feel they're mistreated.

The actual report makes pretty interesting reading. The stats are all over the place. Women report experiencing or seeing more mistreatment, but reported experiencing stereotyping at roughly the same rate as men (23% vs 24% for minority men vs women, 14% vs 12 % for white/asian men vs women). The rate of unwanted sexual attention is drastically higher in the tech industry than other industries (10% vs 6%), but the rate of unwanted sexual attention reported by women is only slightly higher than by men (10% vs 8%). For bullying and harassment, white/asian women reported a lower incident rate than white/asian men (15% vs 16%). But minority women reported a substantially higher rate than minority men (13% vs 9%). You'll also notice minorities reported a lower harassment rate than whites/asians.

I highly recommend reading the actual report if you're curious about this stuff. It doesn't really fit into any of the stereotypes (hah) about male/female or white/asian vs minorities.

Comment Re:60Ghz (Score 1) 136

It's not practical. Why Apple is filing a patent on this, I don't know.

So people will talk about it (like we are here) and associate Apple's name with cool new futuristic stuff, even if that stuff is physically impossible to produce. A few thousand dollars for a patent application is a paltry sum for the amount of free advertising they've gotten out of this.

Comment Re:Idiocy (Score 1) 136

The battery on my first Nexus 5 began flaking out 11 months after I bought it. It would last til the afternoon (about 40%), then drop precipitously in the next hour until it died. I called for warranty service and Google requested I do a rundown test in safe mode. In that mode, only the apps which shipped with the phone are allowed to function - no add-on apps.

The damn thing took a full 2 days to hit 50% and even with the faulty battery almost lasted a third day before dying. That's when I realized smartphone battery life isn't significantly worse than the old flip phones. It's all the damn apps we load them up with running in the background, and the extra screen time spent using those apps which kills battery life.

Comment Re: This needs to stay (Score 1) 272

you're dumb enough to esteem the judgment of a guy who hired someone dumb enough to take money from foreign sources and not report it

Oh, you're referring to the guy THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION gave a security clearance to in 2016, following a review of his business dealings in Russia? That guy? One of the reasons he didn't get even more scrutiny while being considered for that job was the fact that the previous administration had just vetted him post Russian involvement and considered him worthy of an unsponsored security clearance. Which you know, but you're pretending you don't so you can spew your usual phony ad hominem. Thanks for tending so carefully to your ongoing hypocrisy display. Continue!

Comment Common (Score 4, Informative) 50

If you ever start a business, you'll be inundated with these types of phishing attacks. Most of them are actually by postal mail too.
  • Letters and envelopes designed to look like government correspondence, saying you need to renew your business registration for $200. The actual requirement (annual statement of information) is about $20, and can be done online. These scam artists trick business owners who don't know into thinking it's $200 (effectively $20 for the filing, $180 for their "service"). My dad (a family practice doctor) didn't learn this until after he retired, and he found one of these letters in my trash and demanded to know why I was throwing out a government notice. By our estimate he paid over $5000 to these crooks during his career. These got so bad that many states passed laws requiring any correspondence for a service assisting with filing government forms have "THIS IS NOT A GOVERNMENT NOTICE" printed all over.
  • Letters masquerading as subscription renewals for things you haven't actually subscribed to. They're hoping someone in accounting doesn't know you haven't actually subscribed to it, assume it's a renewal so they won't investigate it to see if it's legit, and just pay it.
  • Package delivery fees for your clients. If you're in a business where your customers temporarily or permanently share your address (hotel, landlord, etc), sometimes your customers don't pay their bills to other companies. These companies then try to trick you into paying the bill because you share the same address. They'll send you a legit invoice with your company name as the purchaser/recipient. Buried down in the handwritten description of the charge it'll mention your client who is the actual payer.
  • A company who sold merchandise to one of our customers tried to pull this on us too. They said that was the billing info the customer gave them. I give them the benefit of the doubt - I assume it was a mixup between billing address and shipping address.
  • Information harvesting. These aren't a direct financial attack. I think they're just collecting marketing info so they can sell it. The most memorable one I got was by phone. They claimed to be from the DMV and asked some basic information about our company (size, revenue). Some of our vehicles are registered with the DMV for off-road-only use (i.e. on our property only) so it's not unusual for us to get a call from the DMV about this. But when they started asking about our payroll info, the alarm bells went off. I asked why the DMV needed that info, and they hung up. Thinking back, I think they actually said they were calling from the "DNV" not the "DMV".
  • These can come by mail too. I've gotten one designed to look like the Bureau of Labor Statistics forms our company was sometimes randomly chosen to fill out. Only difference was the destination fax number. I only noticed it because while I was prepping the report, I noticed I had already sent the report for that month. That's when I dug into it a little more and discovered the fax number was different.
  • Designed to look like another bill. I've gotten two of these - one mimicking a utility bill, one saying I had to pay something for my Google account. The Google one was an obvious fake. The one mimicking my electric bill was really good. If I had been paying it by hand, it might have slipped through. I caught it because according to my accounting program, I had already paid the electric bill that month. I think they were counting on people making the payment check out to "SCE" instead of "Southern California Edison", and mailing it in that handily provided return envelope with pre-printed address.
  • Standard fake IRS notices, telling you to call a phone number to pay. The phone number goes to the scammer, not the IRS.

Taken individually, these attacks are usually pretty easy to spot. But when you're hit with so many of them over the years, even if you catch 99% of them, a few will slip through.

Comment Re:The view fails to account getting &*#@ed (Score 4, Informative) 544

Tuitions went up enormously when the law was changed to allow loans not forgiven by bankruptcy.

Here's a chart of historical tuitions (inflation-adjusted). The change in student loan bankruptcy law was in 2005.

  • From 1994-95 to 2004-05, the average tuition rose from $13,069 to $17,030. An increase of 30.3%, or an annual average of 2.68%.
  • From 2004-05 to 2014-15, the average tuition rose from $17,030 to $21,728. An increase ot 27.6%, or an annual average of 2.47%.
  • Even if you remove the transition years (2004-05 and 2005-06), the increase was 2.34% per year before 2005, 1.93% per year after 2005.

So contrary to your claim, the rate at which tuitions were climbing actually slowed down after it was made virtually impossible to discharge student loan debt via bankruptcy.

It was the widespread availability of loans and grants, starting way back after WWII with the GI Bill, which led to high tuitions. The schools simply sopped up that extra money by increasing their tuition. The change to bankruptcy law, while a cute theory, had nothing to do with it, according to numerical evidence.

Comment Re:This is retarded conservatism to help 'coal' (Score 3, Interesting) 478

You probably missed it because you were only looking for examples of OPEC reducing production. Shale oil used to cost around $80-$100/bbl to extract. As long as the price of oil remained below that price, extracting shale oil was economically unfeasible and oil companies threw just a token amount of money into its R&D just to keep it ready on the back burner. So OPEC was trying to keep the price of oil high, but below that $100/bbl threshold. When the price of oil did drift over $100/bbl, OPEC increased production to try to bring the price back below that threshold, keeping shale oil borderline unfeasible.

I think what OPEC (and everyone else) missed was that you don't just get oil from shale oil. You get natural gas too. And that natural gas is what's turned out to be a bonanza, leading it to surpass coal, and threatening to pass oil as the leading fossil fuel. It's driven further shale oil extraction R&D (I believe its cost is well under $50/bbl now). So at this point OPEC is along for the ride just like everyone else.

Comment Re:Another outrage article (Score 2) 272

The Energy Star program costs almost nothing.

And you can buy a laptop on DealDash for $11.

It costs "almost nothing" only if you look at the financial impact on a select part of the economy (the government) rather than on the economy as a whole. To truly measure the cost of Energy Star, you need to measure how much it's costing manufacturers to design to comply with the Energy Star standards. Because they're passing those costs onto their customers in the form of higher prices, which means that cost is coming out of your and my pocket just as if it were taxes.

(Likewise, the way DealDash works is that they charge for each bid everyone places on an auction. So the cost of the $11 laptop is actually the $11 winning bid + how much everyone trying to win it paid in bidding fees. See how deceptive you can be if you don't include all the costs something has on the entire system?)

There are Energy Star standards which are totally worth it (e.g. average electricity cost of appliances like refrigerators which are not always-on). And there are Energy Star standards which totally don't work (e.g. auto-dimming TVs to save power). You need to be able to pick out the wheat from the chaff. Basically, you need an Energy Star for programs like Energy Star, which estimates the cost of having the standard vs. the benefit of having it. And axes any standards which simply aren't worth it and cost more in paperwork and expense than the benefit they produce.

Comment Re:It's pretty simple (Score 1) 272

And people will say OMG! the government is involved in the market so it must be bad.

Actually, Energy Star is a great example of the opposite problematic thinking. That something the government does is good, therefore everything it does must be good.

Energy Star is (was) a great premise. But they've already picked all the low-hanging fruit. A lot of their ratings I've seen lately have been unnecessary - duplicating info you can glean simply by comparing the wattage which is already labeled. It's a government program which has been expanded far beyond the point of cost-effectiveness by people who think any and all government involvement is good. At this point they're dreaming up new energy-efficiency standards, even if the cost of developing and complying with that standard exceeds the cost of the energy saved. (Some of the standards don't even work - TVs, laptops, and tablets go into a screen-dimming power-saving mode just to meet Energy Star standards. But in actual use people just disable the dimming or use the device in ways which prevent the dimming from occurring. What, you thought Microsoft made Windows 8 auto-dim your laptop screen by default just to annoy you?)

Just because some government regulation is bad doesn't automatically mean all government regulation is bad. And just because some government regulation is good doesn't automatically mean all government regulation is good. People need to think more critically, and try to support the government programs and regulations which are worthwhile, while discarding the ones which are not. Otherwise you end up throwing out the baby with the bathwater, or drowning the baby with too much bathwater.

Comment Re:This needs to stay (Score 1, Informative) 272

It's one of the few things the EPA does that's useful and efficient. Setting a national standard is well within the things that government should do. Compared to all the really wasteful things they do this should certainly be kept.

Except it's the manufacturers that self-report their own idea of efficiency, essentially self-awarding themselves this meaningless label. You'll recall the famous experiment where someone sent in an Energy Star application featuring their design for a gasoline powered alarm clock. Which was of course granted Energy Star status, not only sight-unseen, but obviously without even a moment's critical thinking on the part of whatever bureaucratic clerk is holding the exact job that Trump very reasonably considers a waste of your taxes. If consumers want a real standard, they should embrace something the Underwriters Laboratories standard for safety. Privately run, and rigorous.

Comment Re:Is anyone falling for this? (Score 1) 117

Which part? Referencing Wolf Blitzer referring to a non-existent "Muslim ban?" Or MSNBC spending a day lying about how Rachel Maddow was going to "release Trump's taxes?" Typical liberal, you, carefully avoiding the topic and going for lazy ad hominem instead. Because you sure wouldn't want to address the points being made - that would require you to acknowledge that they refer to actual things that make your preferred narrative less truthy-feeling. Can't have that. No! I love how in a discussion about fake news, you're asserting that the person relaying simple (and verifiable by you) facts is virulently ignorant. Thanks for proving my point. Good to have your help.

Comment Re:Is anyone falling for this? (Score 2) 117

So you are unable to actually understand that a temporary immigration halt that impacts under 10% of Muslims in the world (only a tiny, tiny fraction of which would be looking to immigrate anyway) is ... something that it's not? Please explain how the current Muslim ban works. Details, please.

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