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Comment Re:Simplified version. (Score 3, Insightful) 258

The author is upset because Amazon has expanded beyond selling just books and invested earnings into expansion instead of giving back to the investors.

Somehow you distilled the article down into something that it's not. Where does he come across as upset? He isn't even critical of Amazon.

The author gives a seemingly simple explanation as to how Amazon conducts its business differently than everyone else. This apparently is unique enough that it garners lots of wild speculation by other observers and financial analysts, many of the same reactions I'm seeing in the comments here. (My) Simplified version:

  • Amazon happily accepts a lower average margin of profit than other companies would. A small subset of its products showcase this to an extreme, but they are the exception.
  • The profit it does see, it uncompromisingly reinvests back into itself.

The above concepts are not unfamiliar in the least - any business that wanted to get ahead by being more efficient than the competition started by doing this first. You forgo the low hanging fruit to lift your business into a bigger marketshare, and reap the rewards at that level. The small but significant difference, in my opinion, is that Jeff Bezos does this on autopilot.. it's a mentality instead of a tactic, almost a philosophy. It is a tiny difference in human psychology, which amounts to a profoundly different company than would exist otherwise.

But the rest of us need an appropriate speculative explanation. It's this speculation to which the author is responding.

Comment Re:It's the Muslims !! (Score 4, Insightful) 416

Since you had the courage to post with your account, I decided not to down-mod you, but ask you a counter-question: How?

Under which guideline would you have down-modded his post? I don't have points myself right now, but I don't remember there being an option in the dropdown for "Unlikeable."

Comment Re:I had a nice long post written... (Score 1) 1154

Short version: make refinements--not drastic changes--every year. But that's boring, so no one will do it.

This, coupled with vision to understand what your software 1) needs to do today (and what it doesn't), 2) will need to be capable of doing tomorrow, and 3) how to code so that 1 doesn't get in the way of as many hypothetical 2's as reasonably possible. No more god damn ground-up rewrites.

I share your frustration with this topic. The Linux community runs itself in circles with endless discussions, each comment detailing a specific body of code that needs fixed before Linux can become its best. But the problem is endemic.

I feel we could be ten times further along than where we are now. The current state of Linux and related software is impressive, all made possible by the community driven approach. The unfortunate reality is that competing software ecosystems are equally impressive, and made possible in the almost exact opposite way. Closed corporations, run by a hierarchies of people, each individual coder with a boss, who has a boss, who has a boss to please. At the top of that chain is a vision, which I'm convinced is the most important factor in making something meaningful happen. Apple under Steve Jobs is the best example of this, that man was nothing if not someone who made his vision happen for better or worse (in Apple's case, for better, not that it works out that way for all companies).

I'm getting too long winded with this, but I can't help but feeling that the community behind the software we use can do this more intelligently. The sweet spot between the two approaches is with well structured and defined visions for dozens of functional aspects of what makes a great Linux OS, laid out in a way that motivates people to implement their own code, on their own time, with the belief that they are adding their own unique perspective to further a shared goal. The point of all the above IS NOT that we need one vision, one Linux distro, one way of doing things. I don't want Gnome and KDE to agree on all their differences. I want all the behind the scenes concepts behind how Gnome and KDE function within themselves and with regard to other aspects of OS agreed upon; in essence, standards. Outside of that there is infinite room for individual customization and add-ons, but always a solid base to fallback on and for corporations to be able to rely on.

Comment Re:The Linux Problem as I see it (Score 1) 1154

He needed a keyboard and mouse because in his rush he forget his behind. I offered him what I had on hand as a spare, a wireless keyboard and mouse with a fob. I had used it just fine on Macs and various windows machines from XP to Win 8 preview. He froze for a moment with dread/fear in his eyes.

I find this to be a really strange example of the point you're making. Every wireless keyboard/mouse I have used has been instantly plug and play, because the receiver handles the wireless part and just presents an HID device just like a wired mouse or keyboard would. Linux has them operational literally the second I plug the receiver in, which is actually more impressive than Windows because it always takes 10-100 seconds while it sets up the device in the case of USB.

This doesn't change the truth to your point, I can think of many more obscure examples where I'd have to react the same as your friend did with regard to Linux. But I would have been confident for any random keyboard/mouse. Maybe he's had experience with different hardware than I have.

Comment Re:Google bashing thread! (Score 1) 584

it sometimes seems anyone can get modded up to +5 insightful or informative if they sound like they know what they're talking about, even if they're flat out wrong. I've seen so many comments that get modded all the way up and they're provably incorrect

I agree that this is a problematic part of an imperfect system, but I have to point out that this argument directly contradicts the other main complaint of slashdot moderation: that unpopular posts will get down-modded because moderators think it's incorrect (goes against their viewpoint). Either we are supposed to moderate based on factual correctness, or we aren't. Something could be informative while being incorrect, couldn't it? Now there obviously is a big difference between a comment that is factual vs. a matter of opinion, but there is a large grey area in between where these mistakes are going to happen, so we need to choose one behavior and stick with it.

If a comment is well written and convincing (how convincing something is has the most to do with how well it's moderated, I believe), but could be considered wrong, then I think it's alright in the end if it's modded-up. Hopefully, there will be a quality reply that sets the record straight and everybody reading can follow the thought process rather than just getting one answer.

Comment Re:Law enforcement thinks they're above the law. (Score 1) 187

There is no law that says the FBI cannot ASK Qwest for your information, so ASKING is a lawful request.

There's no law that says I can't ASK Qwest for your information, but neither Qwest nor the feds would consider that "a lawful request." They would be held accountable if they were caught giving it to me.

But, indeed, Qwest still seems to be covering their asses with that statement as it pertains to the government. But the "lawful" aspect is referring to whether or not the person lawfully has a right to the information. This is the grey area - does it require a warrant or is that kind of info not considered to be in the same realm of private? That question has to be answered by a court at this point, and that's only if the right people get it pushed that far.

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