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Comment I wonder if Google now knows the costs (Score 2) 64

Perhaps Google has discovered the costs of installing fiber to the home and it's a lot more than they first thought. Now Google will find out the cost of operating and maintaining their systems and those that have their service may find the price of continued subscriptions may go up, but I don't know that for sure. In addition, Google has reduced the number of folks involved in fiber operations, supposedly to investigate some kind of RF method for delivery of very high speed Internet and TV. How's that working out? I'm not anxiously waiting to see.

Comment Re: So... (Score 1) 42

Seems to me the folks on the right, particularly the far right, want to go back to a time that never was or worse than now, than we have now. I'd rather be in the now and a better future given some of the problems of the past that have been solved, though the solutions haven't reached everywhere. I'm thinking particularly about SMOG in such places as southern California but not Beijing, health insurance in Germany or Sweden than the confusion we have in the US, and other situations. There's always the situation where new problems show up and need solutions, but ignoring them won't solve them.

Comment Re:How those solar panels working out for you? (Score 1) 270

That's a pretty good rainfall - 40 to 80 inches per year. Perhaps a bit off topic, but for comparison in the US state of Iowa, where my in laws live, the main crops are corn (maize) and soybeans, the rainfall averages 34 inches (plus or minus a few inches) per year, and there is generally no irrigation. Of course, some of that precipitation is in the form of snow. In much of the state the soil is incredibly deep and rich and seems to hold onto its water. Even with that much rain many of the fields I'm familiar with need good underground tiles (French drains?) for drainage because a there's too much water most years. Maybe sugar cane needs more and continuous watering. I didn't realize the sugar cane farmers didn't really pump well water but move it horizontally - a big difference from what goes on in some parts of the Great Plains of the US where water is drawn from wells.

Comment Re:How those solar panels working out for you? (Score 1) 270

Good point. Not sure if the engines are running a generator that operates an electric well pump. The ultimate source of energy, though, is Diesel fuel. When liquid fuel was very expensive a few years ago I remember a problem with these systems - the fuel was being stolen at night so the farmers needed to go out and empty the fuel tanks when irrigation was finished. I think they typically irrigated during the day.

Comment Re:How those solar panels working out for you? (Score 4, Insightful) 270

Windmills are still being used to pump water in my part of the US - the Colorado Plains and Western Nebraska. The water, though, is not for cops but for cattle watering. For crops, including corn, it seems there's a mixture of motorized pumps and electric I'd guess depending on the availability of electricity.
I wonder why sugar cane is being grown in what I assume is a pretty dry climate using irrigation. The Aussies might want to look at the history of irrigation farming in places like West Texas where wells kept getting deeper and deeper until it was economically unsustainable to pump water from the Ogallala Aquifer thousands of feed down. The destruction of this water supply has had major economic consequences. Of course in Texas, there's something else that can be pumped from the ground: black gold.

Comment Using Diesel might increase electric rates more (Score 2) 270

The electric utility might increase prices even more if folks reduce their electricity usage. The company will want to maintain profits if it's a private company or if publicly owned, maintain its current income. If fewer KWHrs are being consumed but fixed costs remain constant, the company will have less income, so will need to raise rates. The size of any increase would probably depend on the fraction of use of these farmers.

Comment Re:Azure...? (Score 1) 23

My point involved "cloud-only" storage for important, immediately needed data or services. One of the first principles of backup is multiple methods of storage and availability. Cloud storage and availability is pretty reliable, but can go down as can local equipment. It's even less likely both will go down at the same time. If the local electricity goes out and there is no power backup, including for the carrier's Internet, there's nothing one can do except wait. It sounds like cloud based Azure and AWS don't have more than one storage and/or access point, i.e., multiple, accessible backups.

Comment Re:Who cares? (Score 1) 55

Just my thought exactly. They have produced two versions of the Pixel phone and they can't be purchased because they can't be made fast enough. Well, they can be purchased but the wait time is weeks if not months. If Google comes out with new Pixels they need to find a company that can keep the channel filled. How about Samsung?

Comment If this keeps up, why import talent? (Score 1) 553

Eventually more US companies will just move their coding expertise overseas and avoid all this trouble. Besides, it'll cost a lot less - no airplane tickets, no lawyers to bail visitors out of homeland security/TSA/customs custody and other expenses. Will this result in more employment of US citizens who are out of work and might be looking? No disrespect of coal miners, bu how qualified are coal miners at understanding binary search trees and abstract classes? It looks like some programmers posting here don't know or don't remember these subjects.

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