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Comment The 2 factors that made me buy a 3d printer. (Score 1) 25

1. There's a certain number where something becomes an impulse buy. For me and 3d printers that was $200. Ultimately I decided that with inflation, I spent more on my original NES set years and years ago.

Makerbot could have killed it at that price, and still can if they can figure out how to do it at this price.

2. The only hurdle past price is having the needed skills to create things in 3d. Printing other peoples stuff off the web gets old after a while. Luckily the 3d modeling software I taught myself to use really well can output STL files.

Comment Kubuntu and (almost) any laptop on sale (Score 1) 164

For the past 10 + years, I have been using Linux exclusively as my desktop environment, and all on laptops. I use Kubuntu 14.04 at present, and have been on the LTS versions for many years.

I only buy laptops that are on sale, whatever is in the flyers the week I need to replace a laptop.

From a 'what works' point of view, most of the laptops I have used have fully worked with Linux. That includes Wifi and sound, the most pesky components. Years ago, one Dell laptop had an issue with Wifi and I had to download something or other to make it work. The last few releases did not need anything special for it to work.

I am writing this from a 2009 Toshiba that works well with Kubuntu 14.04. An older Toshiba (maybe 2006 or 2007) still works fine with the same Kubuntu version.

From a reliability point of view, avoid HP laptops. I had one where the screen hinge decided not to work, and broke, so it is now a special purpose server. Another HP was overheating and we got it exchanged under extended warranty and 3 strikes (sent for repair 3 times for the same issue).

Comment use the Semantic Scholar, Luke (Score 2) 50

I've been waiting for a good opportunity to take this new toy out for a spin. Semantic Scholar claims to have brain science almost completely covered.

* author search

Not bad.

* topic search

Not blindingly great. But the third link down is a primary hit.

Theory of Connectivity: Nature and Nurture of Cell Assemblies and Cognitive Computation

There's not a lot of related material here that I'd have gone chasing after the hard way. Apparently, either this research result or this search engine is still too new.

Nevertheless, I retain high hopes.

Comment Re:another editor fail (Score 1) 67

I've always wanted a job that involved no physical labor and no mental labor and no oversight of performance.

Too bad others felt the same way, as we're getting exactly that. I've never wanted such a job. The job I've always wanted is the one where I'm in flow for six hours at a stretch (at least once per day), there are more feedback loops than you can shake a stick at, mainly anchored in equally competent peers who likewise wouldn't have it any other way.

NASA, during the Apollo program, had many pockets of competence where The Right Stuff stretched as far as the eye could see.

9 Project Management Lessons Learned from the Apollo 11 Moon Landing

Delegating to people who don't have experience with a certain task may seem counterintuitive, but it was something Apollo project managers actively encouraged — in fact, the average age of the entire Operations team was just 26, most fresh out of college. NASA gave someone a problem and the freedom to run with it, and the results speak for themselves.

Yes, parts of NASA on the ground basically looked like this.

Imagine the caliber of people you need to hire by default to make this strategy viable.

Gerald Weinberg's second rule of acquisition:

        (2) No matter how it looks at first, it's always a people problem.

Moral of the story: hire only those who dream for the stars, the kind of stars where Easy Street has no name.

Comment Re:Look up laws on booby traps (Score 1) 214

Hence what I said about "overly literal geeks". You think so long as you can find something that you consider to be logically consistent, that'll work and you are out of trouble. I'm telling you that is NOT how it works in a court. They very much take the "reasonable man" approach and factor in intent. Doesn't matter how clever you think you are, what matters is what the law says and how the judge applies it.

Comment when the elephant craps on a haystack (Score 1) 439

When the elephant craps on a haystack, finding the needle is even less fun. When the elephant deliberately binges on legumes and kelp and sun-ripened fish sauce for the sole purpose of defiling the haystack, this thread—so far as I managed to get— is the end result.

So thanks to the first ten posts I skimmed for tilting the payoff matrix so far towards rational ignorance and learned helplessness that even my three adult decades of burly and well-callused sanity is squeaking like a little girl, blubbering like a baby, and asking for a day pass.

It's official. I call "uncle".

Comment Trademarks (Score 1) 97

okay, so this is about trademarks. canonical's trademark is being brought into disrepute by the irresponsible action of some cloud providers: it's perfectly reasonable for them to sort this out. now, here's where i have an issue with canonical: why do they think it's okay to have *canonical* not brought into disrepute, when they are themselves acting in a criminal capacity, bringing the *linux* trademark into disrepute by illegally distributing linux kernel source code after they lost their right to do so under the GPLv2, by including the (binary) incompatible ZFS kernel module?

Comment Look up laws on booby traps (Score 5, Insightful) 214

I doubt they'd have a hard time stretching it to over something like this. If you have a device who's only purpose is to destroy something and it goes and destroys something, well you are pretty likely to get in trouble for it.

Remember courts aren't operated by overly literal geeks who think if they can find some explanation, no matter how outlandish or unlikely, it'll be accepted. The law bases a lot around what is reasonable, and around intent. So your attempt at being cute won't work, and you'll be off to jail.

It also may very well be illegal just to have, or be made illegal if not. There are devices that are outlawed purely because they have no legit use. Many states ban burglary tools, which can include things like the cracked ceramic piece of a spark plug (the aluminum oxide ceramic breaks tempered glass easily). If they catch you and can prove intent, then you are in trouble just for having them with the intent to use them illegally.

Oh and don't think they have to read your mind or get a confession to prove intent. They usually just have to show that the circumstances surrounding the situation are enough to lead a reasonable person to believe that you were going to commit a crime.

And a post like this, would count for sure.

Comment These idiots are going to get sued (Score 3, Informative) 214

The problem with a device like this is it is hard to find a substantial legitimate use for it. Given that, they are likely to be targeted for a lawsuit and they are likely to lose that suit.

While it is perfectly ok to sell a device that gets used to commit crimes, you generally have to have a legit reason to be selling it and it can't be something that is totally made up that nobody actually believes. So for example while a crowbar can certainly be used to break in to a house to or attack someone, they are also widely used used to get nails out of things and pry stuck objects apart. As an opposed example a number of companies that sell devices to help you cheat on urine tests have gotten in trouble since their devices had no use other than said cheating.

It is very, very hard to think of a legit use for this and I can't imagine they'll get many legit sales. So it'll probably get them in legal trouble.

Comment Re:That can't be right (Score 1) 504

Actually, there is sharp growth from 1950 to 1970, after which point it becomes more-flattened. 33% of income spent on food in 1950, 15% in 1980, 13% in 2000. That's cutting it by more than half in 30 years, and then by barely 1/7th in 20 years.

The slower growth occurred when things stopped getting cheaper more-rapidly: growth was rapid in abundance and slow in scarcity.

Comment Re:Average income down, fewer people working (Score 1) 504

TFA is talking about a month-to-month report.

And the OP said:

These are not the hallmarks of a thriving economy. The US economy is in a sickly state, with too many part time jobs with no benefits. We need to stop shooting ourselves in the foot. The fact that the numbers look like an improvement is a bit like a doctor telling a patient wife that he's not sick any more. He's dead. The US needs to get healthy before it dies.

Are you telling me the OP's argument here is, "Oh my! The economy was healthy in October, but it is actually sicker in November! This is a crisis of immense magnitude! One month of severe illness is killing the US!" Was this OP's argument made in isolation of any trend leading up to the month of October, 2016?

Are you arguing that the above quote is about October 2016 to November 2016, with no prior context, rather than about the long-running state of the economy?

Comment Re:I appreciate using the correct Unemployment met (Score 1) 504

Even looking at take-home pay would blow that argument out of the water. The fact that we can buy more and better things than we could years or decades ago is an increase in real income.

Nobody wants to admit income is actually hard to measure, and that wage income doesn't tell you about buying power because the entire point of technical progress is to make the same things with less labor, and thus to employ the same wage-compensated hours to make more things and more-complex things. It sounds easy when I describe it in terms of wooden chairs versus chairs with cushions, but what happens when we get to talking about cars with fluid couplings versus cars with torsen differentials?

One day, we will have the same cars with self-driving modules in them. Look at Tesla: the self-driving hardware is already in the cars; you pay $2,000 for a software update. Building a car with a self-driving module versus building it without isn't flatly the cost of the module; it's also the cost of labor to make two different assemblies, and logistics to determine how many to supply of each. Those labor and logistics costs are so high in some cases that many cars with a heated seat option actually ship all seats heated, and simply don't install a heating port or connector on the seat itself--that way it gets built the same, and they simply skip a step. How do you gauge how much buying power you've gained now that a car with heated seats or a self-driving software program costs trivially-more than one without, when those things come with all cars and you only pay for the permission to use them?

Comment Re:Average income down, fewer people working (Score 1) 504

Arguing about long-term economic trends like incomes going up or down requires a long-term context. A context of one-month is like trying to describe climate change in terms of August to September.

GP even argued about inflation. How much inflation do you suppose happened--or was even measured--between October and November? For that matter, with holiday sales, wouldn't inflation over a few weeks be negative, if you picked the right weeks?

It's unreasonable to assume an economics discussion about the general state of the US economy is a short-term discussion. Unemployment rate falling segways into larger discussions quite-readily. If the discussion were meant to be in a one-month total context, then OP and GP are just morons; while I don't doubt they're terrible economists, I tend to doubt people are truly that stupid--usually those kinds of absolute retards have some sort of pathological mental illness and exhibit defense mechanisms that look an awful lot like, but are distinct from, schizophrenia.

Comment Re:MODS, GET A GRIP!!! (Score 1) 504

Person A: "Obama fucked everything up."

Person B: "Actually, looking at these numbers... he made things better."

Person C: "Person B is a moron and wrong. He used incorrect numbers."

Person D: "Oh, Person B is wrong. Obama fucked everything up, like Person A said."

You are Person C. You made the type of calculated argument that I would have intentionally developed if I wanted to mislead the reader into dismissing an argument without directly stating anything factually-incorrect. I responded the same way as any other reader: I interpreted your simple "you're wrong because your numbers are wrong" to incorporate "thus your conclusion is wrong"--the way every English language speaker who hasn't redone the analysis themselves would interpret it, because assuming you're not implying my conclusions are incorrect would be ludicrous.

My post is insightful and informative, because it shows that, in fact, Obama improved the economy--albeit a clerical error demonstrates that improvement to a lesser degree than actual. You argued that "every number is wrong or irrelevant" and that I should be modded down, without implying that the conclusions are correct. You either fully-understand that you're trying to convince others that Obama actually made shit worse, or you have zero ability to communicate clearly with other people and are probably considered some kind of weird-ass social failure--and likely don't even understand how awkward people find you.

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