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Comment Bloatware and Regional Issues vs Stability (Score 1) 185

I live in Japan. Japan is a nightmare when it comes to cell phone selection and service provider flexibility. I run CyanogenMod on my Motorola Razr M. Partly because I HATE Softbank's bloatware. However, the cell radio and battery life have both been terribly unstable/buggy. The phone is on its last legs and I bought a used Sony Xperia Zx Compact to replace it...but I bought it from AliExpress so I need to flash it with a custom ROM so I can stick my Softbank SIM card in it. Why do I go through all this trouble? Because Softbank doesn't sell a physically small (screen
I'm sitting in Vietnam right now after a week in Thailand. I carry a Chinese phone (Doogee X5 Pro) with a stock ROM that supports 2 SIM cards. All I have to do for 4G data + cellphone is grab a $10-15 SIM card in the airport. Which takes about 5 minutes. Sometimes I really love the free-wheeling nature of developing economies.

Comment Re:'Developed a Clear Preference' For Trump (Score 1) 734

the US people preferred Clinton.

California preferred Clinton. Clinton's overall vote gap was, what, 3 million votes over Trump? But her vote gap in California was 4 million votes. So judging by just the OTHER 49 States Clinton lost the popular vote. Why should the rest of the country be held captive by the far left political preferences of just one state?

Comment Re:What's the ROI on any $80K+ car? (Score 4, Interesting) 179

There are hundreds of thousands of cars selling in that segment (high-end Porsches, Mercedes Benz, BMW, etc.). I can only think of one that seats 5 comfortably and does 0-60 in 2.5s...and that's why Tesla is cleaning up in that segment.

^This. I only have an anecdotal data point: I've spent a few days in Hong Kong and was amazed at how common the Model S is there. Residents there don't need to drive far, enjoy not having to pay for fuel, but definitely want something further up-market than a typical hybrid like a Prius so they can park next to their friend's/coworker's German luxo-barge without being embarrassed. The city is flush with money, so in an environment where basically price is no object it was nice to see so many people had chosen an American-made status symbol.

Comment Jam the Distress Call? (Score 1) 122

And if the drone became completely disoriented, it would be programmed to land safely and broadcast its location to its handlers.

Get (or observe) a few drone deliveries and do some SIGINT collection with an RTL-SDR to ID the freq range and strength of the drone's transmissions.
Once you do have a method to force a landing (which doesn't seem easy, BTW), broadcast with a cheap-ish SDR (probably a HackRF or the new LimeSDR) and a power amplifier to jam the drone's distress call.
Steal the drone and its cargo. Disable the drone's comms and sell on the black market.
What sort of stuff are they delivering with drones anyway? Gaming laptops? Gaming consoles? Either are pretty high value targets and easy to flip on the black/grey market, I would think...

Comment Re:Maybe he does support those values (Score 1) 600

Honestly, though, Trump has a lot of camera time talking about wanting his hot daughter's sexy body. We elected a pedophile who knows nothing about economics and wants to bang his daughter.

Nitpick: pedophilia is a sexual attraction to pre-pubescents. Given that Trump's daughter Ivanka is a sexually-mature adult, she doesn't qualify. A more correct description of Trump would be incestuous .

Comment Show Me the Data (Score 1) 351

Firstly....If they are going to assert porn = human trafficking, I wanna see some reliable evidence.

Secondly, if the objective is to "protect children"....will instructions for adults to remove the filters be included? If so, pretty much negates the point.

Thirdly, is the South Carolina market even large enough for most device manufacturers to justify this cost?

Comment Re: Way to waste every modicum of self-respect Oba (Score 2) 531

US agents were supplying arms to numerous rebel factions. Many of these weapons and rebel groups have joined ISIS.

Many of these weapons were already in Iraq by the time Obama became president, and many were supplied to the Iraqi government. That the Iraqi government lost them later to ISIS is the fault of the Iraqi government, not anybody else.

He's not referring to Iraqi army weapons that were captured in Iraq. He's referring to weapons that our government has stated it has supplied to Syrian rebels. Rebels which then either sold the weapons to jihadis, or were absorbed into larger jihadi organizations. : "CIA-funded weapons have begun flowing to Syrian rebels, a U.S. official told CNN."

Comment Re:Please let Tizen succeed (Score 1) 122

As soon as I saw "Tizen" in the headline, the article you linked is the first thing that came to my mind. I once had a passing interesting in Tizen development but resources/information/community help for developers is scant. Google searching will eventually lead you to the linked article and turn anyone sensible off of Tizen, IMO. These days, I'm trying to do everything with C++ (my most familiar language, but I'm not a programmer by trade), Qt, and Python.

Comment Re:Trump's Failure (Score 1) 430

Trump is a traitor to the US, beyond business dealings in Russia that compromise his judgement

Are you equally critical of the Clintons and their business dealings with Russia?

he has already backed Russian interference in the democratic process that is the foundation of the US

Are you equally critical of the Obama administration's interference in the internal politics of Ukraine?

Putin will attack the US unless he is killed or overthrown first

Please describe the Operational Plan/Scheme of Maneuver that you anticipate for Putin's attack on the US. Cyber attack? Strategic bombers? Nuclear weapons?If you are going to make such an accusation, you must foresee some "End State" that Putin would expect to accomplish. What is his objective with a direct confrontation, by your estimation?

Right now Russia has its hands full with its Air Force operating in Syria and its Little Green Men operating in Novorussia/Eastern Ukraine. It's a country of ~130 million with a shaky economy and a military that is only partly through a period of modernization....a modernization that has been rudely interrupted by low oil prices and Western sanctions. They're not really in a position to go on the offensive against what remains the most powerful conventional military on the planet by far. And maybe you missed the part where Putin stated he was willing to talk about resetting/normalizing relations with the US, now that the Neocon Hillary isn't likely to be the Commander-in-Chief:

Comment Re:My fellow Europeans (Score 1) 2837

>the inevitable consequences of The Donald pulling the US out of NATO. Heaven forbid that the second-largest economy in the world (the EU as a whole) actually man up and be fully responsible for its own defense.

The EU has a $16 trillion economy and a population of 510 million. You have two nuclear-armed countries (France, UK), who, along with Germany and Sweden, form a healthy and advanced defense industry. Add Poland, Finland, Italy, Spain.....and the conventional military force is pretty robust too.

Russia has a ~$1.5 trillion economy and a population of 146 million. They have an advantage in nuclear arms but a qualitative and quantitative disadvantage in conventional military strength compared to the whole EU.

So if you fear an invasion by a country with a tenth of your economy and less than half your should probably do some push-ups and then join your national military. If you are unwilling to do those things, then the Russians probably deserve to plant a flag in your capital.

Comment Re:And to think the DNC wanted to face Trump... (Score 1) 2837

am really worried that Trump will start WW3,

With who, the Russians, or the Chinese? Trump has repeatedly indicated he would normalize relations with Russia, has backed away from militarily supporting NATO allies who don't meet their 2% GDP military spending commitments, and (to my knowledge) has not advocated a No-Fly Zone in Syria.

Contrast with Clinton, who has repeatedly indicated she wants regime change is Syria, at the very least a No-Fly Zone in Syria....even though the airspace of the Syrian government is rather actively protected by the Russian military.

If you are concerned about a war with China, check out the articles below. Basically, Clinton is the one who wants to play hardball, but without operating from a position of strength. That's a good way to have the Chinese call your bluff. While Trump wants a stronger presence is Asia specifically to show China he's serious, he's quoted as saying he would reject a nuclear first strike. He has also expressed a greater willingness to diplomatically engage with China on the subject of North Korea.

Comment Re:Maybe both have their place. (Score 1) 325

So many issues I have with this. First of all, yes you can tell the difference between airplanes and cruise missiles.

Clearly I wasn't specific enough about the concept. Take a Nanchang Q-5 or Chengdu J-7. Refit it is as a flying fully-autonomous drone, with a pre-programmed flight mission. The Chinese have already done this. It's very similar to how the US uses old F-4 Phantoms as flying target drones. This will still have the thermal and radar signature of the 3rd-generation aircraft frame. If you pick one up on radar, you have no idea if it's:
A. A human-piloted obsolete fighter on a Combat Air Patrol.
B. An unmanned, unarmed, dummy target.
C. An unmanned, unarmed fighter flying towards your airbase to kamikaze itself into your aircraft shelters.

Drones with any remote control capability are useless. Drones without any remote control are incredibly dangerous - as much to whoever fields them as they are to whoever they're fielded against. Once you send them up, all you can do is hope for the best.

And in China's case, "hope for the best" is either someone shoots it down (preferably wasting a BVR missile) or they fly on their merry way and either a) hit something valuable on the enemy's turf or b) reveal a gap in the enemy's CAP.

And if you're going that route, it better be part of a zerg-rush power projection play over someone else's homeland because otherwise you're likely going to cause more damage to your own people than your enemy

China would most likely employ them in an A2/AD strategy over the Taiwan Straits and the waters around the Senkakus/Okinawa. They're not going to be falling on Chinese cities....and even if they did, this is China we are talking about. Not exactly the most casualty-averse government, and one with a pretty tight grip on the media so they can spin drones falling out of the sky all kinds of ways.

And you don't have to engage them unless they're an actual threat.

See above. How are you going to assess if an autonomous Q-5/J-7 is a threat? Fly close enough to peek into the cockpit and notice there's no pilot?

So a $350,000 missile shooting down $25 Million aircraft; how's that going to work out in their favor?

Q-5, J-7, and J-8 airframes are already paid for. A US QF-4 conversion costs $800,000: ( Given the general purchasing power advantage in China I wouldn't be surprised if their conversions cost half that. And the cost-exchange ratio is largely irrelevant if the air campaign lasts days or weeks, and they achieve their operational and strategic objectives in the process.

while hitting air fields, munitions manufacturing sites, softer C&C targets, etc with long range cruise missiles

I haven't seen a Joint Target List for mainland China, but I'm intimately familiar with the Korean Theater. If you expect to significantly degrade the C2 and aviation capability of a country the size of the US, and one equipped with a far more advanced (albeit less dense) IADS than North Korea.....well, that's wishful thinking, to say the least.

then pull all the carrier strike groups into the region (not all together because you don't want to risk nuclear attacks taking out more than one at a time) including the ones on standby to start building sustainable power projection from the coast inland

The combat radius of carrier strike fighters is ~500nm. The combat radius of a JH-7A is 890nm. If you expect to project power inland you'll be well within range of anti-ship strikes, not to mention DF-21D anti-ship ballistic missiles (assuming they work as designed).

B-2s escorted by F-22s would pound the Hell out of everything the cruise missiles can't tackle

Where do you plan on flying F-22s from? Kadena Air Base? Which has no hardened aircraft shelters and is well within range of TBMs?

But we'd dismantle the conventional military of any foe on the planet quite efficiently and effectively over a period of time. We can end China in a conventional war.

Just found this nifty page on RAND's site, an interactive "scorecard" assessment of US-China parity:
They are estimating Chinese advantages in anti-surface warfare and airbase defense, with rough parity in other fields. Maybe you should submit a point paper to them pointing out how wrong they are.

The J-20 is a half-assed rip-off of American tech and it's primarily a prototype platform

You've done QA/QC on China's aircraft production lines? Please swing by the nearest Intel section so they can update their Threat Assessment. The J-20 is supposed to be officially revealed at the Zhuhai Air Show this week, so we'll soon see how many they plan to put into service.

Comment Re:The F-35 might end up being a great fighter... (Score 1) 325

Don't the marines use helicopters and Harriers for this role?

The Corps has 6 squadrons of Harriers.....and *13* squadrons of F-18s. So 2/3rds of our fixed wing assets are multi-role strike fighters flying from Navy carriers.

A F-35 can't fly slow and can't take nearly as much damage as the A-10 can and keep going - this is a byproduct of how it was designed to fulfill several roles and the compromises this involves. The aircraft is vulnerable to light arms fire, runs a single, big engine which is easy to damage, can carry very limited ordinance due to its internal bay arrangement and can load only 220 rounds of 25mm ammo.

All of those things are true, however...

By any measure it is a poor, poor CAS platform.

CAS is not a set of platform specs. It is an operational concept. A B-52 dropping JDAMS danger close to an infantry company is a CAS platform. Trends in digital CAS (submitting and prosecuting air support requests with digital data instead of voice radio and hand-written notes) + precision munitions = a reduced requirement for direct observation by the pilot's Mk. I Eyeball. Which also means you don't need an aircraft flying low, slow, and relying on its armor and gun runs. Improved targeting and marking equipment, both with ground personnel and on aviation platforms, facilitates accurate, higher-altitude delivery of munitions. DARPA and the Marine Corps understand this:

There's a lot of reasons why I think the F-35 is a shitty overall acquisition, but an F-35B with an internal load of Small Diameter Bombs (once they make them actually fit inside the bomb bays), flying fast and stealthy (can't assume we'll have air dominance in the future) to put ordnance precisely on target, in support of an accurate digital air support request....yeah, that's probably the only thing the aircraft will ever get right. Eventually. Still won't be cost-effective though.

Comment Re:Please cite your source? (Score 1) 325

See my other response about what we use fixed-wing air support for:
Fixed-wing aircraft operating in the Deep Area will need the ability to defend themselves, and benefit from stealth characteristics to evade engagement by Integrated Air Defense Systems. This is why we need a multi-role strike fighter, preferably with radar stealth.

We don't need Apaches, we have AH-1 Cobras. Apaches aren't navalized so operating them from maritime platforms would be a maintenance nightmare. The AH-1 has quite a bit of parts commonality with our UH-1s too.

When are they working in a theater of combat that the Air force or navy isn't maintaining air superiority for them?

Guadalcanal. Much of the Corps' approach to aviation was shaped by the Navy bugging out from Guadalcanal and leaving us with limited aviation assets.

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