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Comment Re:... move to a shared, distributed database ... (Score 1) 76

Blockchains solve the double-spend problem. Great, but banks don't typically have that problem in the first place because the currency is not the record.

It could be another strategy for getting to a cashless economy. If the money is digital it can be cut off, confiscated, or pretty much anything the controlling authority decides. The only way it would be allowed to go forward is if there's a way for government to control and track it.


Comment Re:So what. (Score 1) 236

Many younger individuals can't seem to get the concept that paying over and over for "borrowing" something is a bad deal.

We're talking about movies here, not music. I don't know about you, but there aren't very many movies I really care to watch over and over again. This is the whole reason that video rental stores (like the ill-fated Blockbuster) were such a success as soon as VCRs became commonplace; most of us just want to pay a fee and watch a movie *once*, and that's it. Once in a while we'll see a movie that's so great we might want to watch it multiple times (like Aliens from 1986), but that's rare, and even there it's not like I want to watch it that often.

Music is entirely different, and I agree with you on that: I really don't understand the current phenomenon where so many people want to pay for streaming music access, and my best guess is that it's mostly people who don't care that much about music and just want some crappy filler playing in the background all the time. Personally I have very specific music I want to listen to, so I keep it in Ogg form on all my devices (phone, laptop, car) and play from my library constantly. But I listen to music a fair amount: pretty much any time I'm in the car, for instance, plus frequently when I'm using my computer at home, plus frequently when I'm at work (with headphones). I don't watch movies that often, and it just isn't very often that I re-watch a movie.

Oh, and what if you wish to watch something that's older than last year? (Oblivion, Edge of Tomorrow, Pacific Rim) or even within the last year (Star Wars 7) These are all available to me, to watch any time.

Right, and how much did all those cost you? How many dozens of movies do you have to make a decent collection so you aren't watching the same 3 movies over and over? The total cost there is significant. With Netflix, you pay a cheap monthly fee (less than $10) and can watch all you want at any time, out of a truly enormous catalog. If you really like a particular movie a lot and want the higher quality (and lack of worries about problems with access) that a physical disc offers, you can certainly buy that too; it's not either-or.

Comment Re:So what. (Score 1) 236

Exactly. Download it on BT, and now you have a reasonable-size file that you can just play in any decent media player at your convenience. No messing around with stupid easily-scratched optical discs, no messing around with your Blu-Ray player needing a firmware update because of some encryption keys on the disc, no messing around with slow internet connections and streaming problems (esp. with FF/REW), it "just works". The main problem with the BT stuff is that a lot of it is transcoded to smaller resolutions or bitrates to save space, so it won't have the ultimate quality of a true Blu-Ray. But it's still a lot better than DVD quality usually, thanks to much more modern codecs. The h265 stuff is great.

Comment Re:Make the banks take the risk when an driver hit (Score 1) 136

No, that's not an open question at all. Sanders would have won, easily.

Hillary wasn't that far behind Trump, she won the popular vote, but she screwed up (among other ways) by not campaigning in key states like PA that the DNC thought were "safe". Bernie was always much better about campaigning in places like that. Hillary's campaign was totally full of hubris; they really thought they couldn't possibly lose, especially to Trump. Her campaign was also full of condescension, esp. to the Bernie voters, and of course to anyone on the right. A lot of Trump voters were just sick of mainstream, incumbent politicians and voted for him out of spite for that and her. Many would have actually voted for Bernie. Bernie brought a lot of enthusiasm from the under-30 crowd. Obama himself won largely because he got young people to get out and vote. Hillary didn't: young people didn't like her, and her campaign didn't care much to court them either. It didn't help that she and her followers specifically told the Bernie crowd that "we don't need you". It also didn't help that she and the DNC were seen by the Bernie voters as having knifed his campaign in the back with dirty tricks, as shown in the leaked Podesta emails.

Hillary lost an election to the 2nd-most unpopular candidate in history. That's because she was the most unpopular candidate ever. There's really no way Bernie could have done worse. People actually *liked* Bernie, he had the support of the youth, and he wasn't hamstruck by scandal after scandal. The only arguments against Bernie were from Hillary supporters inventing nonsense to try to back their queen (like, "the Republicans would have found dirt on him too!" Except that they didn't.).

Just look at the election numbers. There were millions more votes in the 2008 election than in November's, even though the population is a little bigger now. Lots of people simply sat at home. Obama was famous and acknowledged for getting a lot of people out to vote, particularly younger people who are infamous for not turning out to vote; Bernie had the same effect, but Hillary had the opposite effect. Assume that Bernie would get those several million people out to vote unlike Hillary, add in all of Hillary's voters (because they sure as hell aren't going to vote for Trump, and they're generally older so they're more reliable about both turning out and voting along party lines even if they aren't enthused about the candidate), plus definitely more swing voters since he didn't have Hillary's baggage, and it's quite clear that Bernie would have won.

It's just too bad the DNC and their lapdogs in the media will never admit to itself that this is the case, and Trump being president is really all their fault for doing everything they could to keep Bernie from winning their nomination. (Remember the day when Washington Post published almost 20 hit pieces on Bernie in a single day?)

Comment Re:Deep AI not even in the product mentioned (Score 1) 146

Unrelated to SF, but related to pervasive AI:
Notice those dog or fawn or cat faces people are overlaying on their snapchat shots?
That is an impressive bit of AI and machine visual processing. Something that would have been laughably expensive 5 years ago.

Yes AI is very pervasive already.

Comment Re:Internet access in Cuba (Score 1) 70

I am certain nobody could had trouble for looking up a web site at that time, since the web did not exist,.

You attempt to deflect. It was then, and remains now, a dictatorship run by Fidel and now his brother Raul who operate domestically as most dictatorships of those type always have. Any changes have been mostly a matter of degree for now but could change at their whim. Just because, for now, they are not engaging in extreme and overt oppression/pacification tactics does not mean anything has changed in principle.

it is easy to find people that went to Cuba recently for tourism and could speak freely with cuban people.

The same is true in China. You can tour the Great Wall and other sights. One can vacation in Russia as well. The people you meet are invariably great. They also aren't about to start talking to some random foreign tourist about overthrowing the government or smuggling in weapons/contraband etc etc. That has nothing to do with whether authoritarian tyrannies are OK any more than whether authoritarian theocracies are OK or how free or oppressed the people may or may not be.

Sorry, but I believe that individual freedom and natural rights take precedence over collectivist/socialist/communist/theocratic governments or dictatorships/tyrannies which put the state's desires and goals over that of the individual's interests and natural rights as a human being. I will always stand in opposition to such.


Comment Re:Internet access in Cuba (Score 1) 70

How about "monitored, with a high probability of being 'disappeared', murdered, or simply arrested & imprisoned for visiting the 'wrong' kind of sites

A bit better, but who told you that kind of things happen in Cuba?

Besides history books, there were also the stories I was told directly from Cubans in Florida who had escaped the Castro regime. I lived in FL in the '70s.


Comment All you guys are going to miss Win10 (Score 1, Troll) 471

When Win7 came in, everyone crapped on it. Longing for XP64. Praising Xp64 as good enough. stable enough. dont mess with this.

Then the fiasco of Win8, skipped 9, Win10. Finally everyone will be brought to Win10 kicking and screaming. And they all will file bug reports with a vengeance. MS developers will bellyache having to fix bugs in win10, while all the really cool assignment goes Win12 teams. But eventually Win10 will get to be actually much better than Win7. Just in time to declare it dead and annoint Win12 as the new king of the hill.

And the cycle will repeat.

Its turtles all the way down. And bugs all the way up.

Comment Re:Don't call it a tablet? (Score 3, Insightful) 113

No One: "Oh, and could you also throw in a monthly fee for online multiplayer like Xbox Live and PSN, but make us use our iPhones for basic features that those services have provided for fifteen years now, like voice chat and matchmaking?"

Nintendo: "Yep, gotcha...."

No One: "And can you make it so we can't just transfer over all our Virtual Console games, so we have to buy them all over again?"

Nintendo: "We hear you. No problem."

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