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Comment Which won't happen, they aren't a monopoly (Score 1) 208

All the monopoly regulations on them expired and with Apple and Linux where they are now, you'd have a lot of trouble convincing a court MS is a monopoly. In the desktop market they are still the big dog, but Apple is a major competitor. Macs are all over the place. In the server market MS is a big player, but so is Linux. I don't know what the split is, but it wouldn't surprise me to find out Linux is on top. In the mobile arena MS is a nothing. Linux (in the form of Android) is by far the biggest with iOS coming in #2.

Thus there's no argument to be made for a monopoly position. When there's very real competition out there in all segments of your market, you aren't a monopoly. Well if you aren't a monopoly, then anti-competition laws don't apply. Companies are free to lock-in their own solution. Again for a great example see Apple, who (tried to) lock their software to their hardware and puts everything in their own controlled ecosystem.

Sorry, but the MS monopoly ship has sailed. Unless the market changes significantly, they are just another player, which means they can do this kind of thing.

Comment Not quite (Score 1) 101

There's no voice, only text and data. Reason voice is excluded has to do with archaic regulations as best as I can tell. Things are changing in that regard so it'll probalby change at some point. However right now you get talk to and from the US, Canada, and Mexico. Everywhere else voice is extra charge. Text and data are available in most countries and are included with no extra charge.

Comment If nothing happens it becomes negative feedback (Score 1) 195

Trump says X, traders jump on positions that would benefit from X to try and get out in front. However other than the speculative betting there isn't much movement. Then X doesn't happen, so there is no long term movement. The traders disengage from their positions trying to take as little loss as possible.

This happens over and over and more will learn that acting just loses you money. It's why markets don't do fuck-all in response to Alex Jones. It isn't like his message isn't out there for the world to see, and actually more widely watched than I can fathom, but they don't believe anything will happen based on it so trying to get a first mover advantage can't happen.

You only gain an advantage by getting in first if the move happens. If it doesn't, at best maybe you can get out without a loss but usually you are going to take a hit to some degree. Thus you act only on those things that are likely to generate a move.

Traditionally, things the president said would qualify. However Trump is anything but traditional. He shoots his mouth off all the time, regularly contradicts himself, and changes his mind often.

Comment Well with the "elite" schools it is often not that (Score 4, Insightful) 314

For a regular school, particularly state school, then yes it gets stacked a lot by test scores and other academic indicators. The better you do academically, the more they are interested in you and the more money they'll try to give you to get you to attend.

However the "elite" schools have a whole bunch of good old boy shit going on. If you look at admissions in to places like Harvard you find that there are some legitimately top performers who come in, but a whole lot who are not and are instead connected some way. They are kids of alums, politically connected, rich, whatever. They are the "right kind of people" and so get the invite.

That's also the reason why parents want kids to go there is the connections. You don't get a better education at Harvard overall. Any university with a good program will do at least as well, and in plenty of disciplines there are schools ranked far better. However it further gets you in to the old boys club and gets you connections to people that gets your opportunities that would not otherwise be available later in life.

Comment And in fact you do the opposite (Score 5, Insightful) 276

You have a plan should you get killed or otherwise be unable to provide the passwords. Where I work, in addition to there being more than one IT staff, all the passwords are safely locked away where the Dean can get at them, if needed. We make sure that even if we are all gone, whoever comes after can get access.

These days the university has policies to that effect but we did it before then because that is what you do. You have a disaster plan, and that plan includes what happens if you aren't around.

Comment No, he wasn't (Score 2) 797

Assanage's offer was always empty, given that the US isn't after him, at least not publicly. Now he contends that the US wants to get him in secret, though he's presented no evidence of this and of course one would have to question if they'd agree to a public deal for something secret.

Assanage is wanted by Sweden and the UK. Sweden for a sexual assault case, and the UK for skipping bail in that case. The US has not filed any charges against him, though I'm quite sure they don't like him. If he left the embassy he would be arrested by the UK and shipped off to Sweden. Or they might not send him off, since he's broken UK law by skipping bail and try him there for that crime, then ship him off once she's served his sentence.

So this was always a stunt.

Comment It is a problem I've talked about for a long time (Score 0) 130

And one that often gets me downvoted since Mac users don't like to hear it: Apple is a fashion company. That's why they've been able to do what they do. In fashion, a higher price can be a GOOD thing not a bad thing, whereas consumer electronics are one of the most notoriously price sensitive markets out there.

However the downside is as you say: What is fashionable changes and it is really hard to stay on top of it forever.

Comment Re: Unlimited? (Score 1) 196

Small cells negate the "limited amount of spectrum" argument. It's a financial + logistical + political/regulatory limitation, not a technical one.

Technology will eventually advance to the point that the financial consideration is less important. We're already working with beam-forming -- a technology that's existed for decades, in radar applications -- for instance. Wireless is the future, no matter what the naysayers think, and if you're still thinking of "spectrum" as the limiting factor you're behind the curve. Makes me think of the folks who deploy IPv6 for the first time and start worrying about the "waste" of addresses.

Comment Re:Unlimited? (Score 1) 196

There's no technical reason why an LTE network can't be engineered to provide truly unlimited data with acceptable speeds in most instances. There is, however, a financial reason, plus the usual regulatory/political concerns that get in the way of new cell sites. It's worth noting that T-Mobile manages to offer unlimited with an asterisk (video throttled to 1.5Mbps) and in many cases delivers superior speed than Verizon, so it's clearly POSSIBLE and PROFITABLE to use as a business model.

In rural/fixed-wireless settings LTE is actually cheaper than DSL/cable and the favorable contention ratios (i.e., low population density) make unlimited possible with today's network. It's a mystery to me why they won't offer an unlimited product for this market segment at least; it would be the death blow for satellite internet.

Comment Re:No, it wasn't (Score 1) 104

Well two things there BTChead:

1) Some currencies DO move large amounts and that is NOT considered successful. When the pound was experiencing instability, that was a big cause for concern. It was not considered a "success" as people seem to think for BTC.

2) It was 8%, not 30%. Bit of a difference there.

Like I said before: You can't have it both ways. If you want it to be a good currency, then stability is what you want. If you are happy with rapid fluctuations, then it is a speculative betting opportunity.

Comment No, it wasn't (Score 3, Interesting) 104

Not just because it doesn't work as a currency, but because for currencies big swings in valuation, up or down, are no "good performance". Ideally a currency would be completely stable. What $1 buys now would be what $1 buys tomorrow, and what it buys in a thousand years. Of course in reality none of them are totally stable, but the good ones are pretty stable. They move a very small amount, and do so very gradually. They function as a good store of wealth for that reason, and more importantly make for a useful medium of exchange. Since their value is pretty constant, people have a good feeling for how much they are "worth" and can mentally price things.

Bitcoin did well as a speculative bet. If you want to play financial speculation, Bitcoin is a good target as it moves like a very thinly traded stock. That means it can swing bit and make you a lot of money. Also means it can swing big the other way and lose you a lot. So like any sort of speculation, you need to know what you are getting in to and understand the risks.

You BTC promoters can't have it both ways: If Bitcoin is a good currency then it needs to be stable. If Bitcoin is a good investment, then it isn't a currency.

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