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Comment Which is why we need a gross receipts tax (Score 2, Interesting) 177

Does your real estate agent take a percentage of your profit?
Does your broker base his fees on your profit?
Does your property tax bill ask what your profit was?

Of course not, so why is the US Government that? The value you get from the government running the military, maintaining safety programs,and building and maintaining our transportation infrastructure isn't based on how much you made last year, it's a fixed cost. Change to a gross receipts tax and every dollar you receive is taxed at a fixed rate. No worries about what is deductable, or what does or doesn't qualify as pre or post tax. Plus it's more easily auditable.

My town uses it and it's pretty fucking straight forward. You put down what you grossed, and you multiply that by between 0.10% and 0.37%. Yes, you read that correctly - our local business tax is ten to thirty-four CENTS for every One Hundred DOLLARS you gross. And, aside from lying on your tax forms, there's no way around it.

Comment Re:Missing a big point (Score 4, Insightful) 600

You're bitching about semantics. Machine learning, AI, programming - no, this isn't some autonomous correction to the system; it isn't going to "learn" from this in the human sense. But the system (programmers, sensors, and control fucntions) will be improved to deal with this type of situation. There is no AI in the car - it's just programmed reactions. But in your zeal to blather on about what AI is and isn't, you're missing the point that the *system* will become more capable of handling out-of-normal and unanticipated conditions. In humans we call this intelligence.

Comment Re:What about the truck? (Score 1) 600

"common use-case"

That's going to be an exceptionally rare use case, actually - a shoulder case that needs to be evaluated, but not in any case common. It would be a significant case for a tractor trailer, or a vehicle towing a large trailer such as a camper, but for a car that's shorter than a 12 year old girl, concern for an object spanning over a road which has no material in the first 24" above the lane of traffic, but is shorter than 56" is pretty damned rare.

Comment Re:Politics aside, is this a copyright violation? (Score 1) 460

But they weren't random communications. They were intentionally created for a particular purpose and crafted and formatted to present more than basic data. There are also thousands of attachments, many of them presumably reports and pictures - all of which would definitely be works which fall under copyright. This post is even copyrighted, as useless as it is, and the terms of using this site are that I grant /. the non-exclusive right to redistribute it.

Comment Re:Politics aside, is this a copyright violation? (Score 1) 460

Even if the performance wasn't copyrighted, unless the arrangement and the original work was either public domain or written on government time, the recording would still carry the music author's copyright and would not be allowed to be reproduced without a license.

Comment Politics aside, is this a copyright violation? (Score 1, Interesting) 460

Since these are private communications - not government data - and each email is a creative work by the author, would this potentially be subject to copyright infringement, to the "value" of the communications (which may only arguably be $10-20 a piece if you count time spent x nominal billing rate), triple damage for intentional distribution, times the number of downloads (or x1 if it was uploaded to a torrent, and then copyright infringement applied to all who are torrenting)? Could several of the key documents be registered and then, if subsequently distributed by others, in for the $150,000 per infringement violation - and could that be applied to any organization which disseminates [even non-fair-use excerpts] of the works?

Comment Re:Pokemon Go to rake in nearly $13 Billion (Score 1) 79

The Play store takes the same cut as Apple (30%), though the recent "long term developer" discounts would have that fall to as little at 15% on both platforms. I suspect that if the simpletons writing the fluff piece don't understand the peaking kind of demand for this game, they wouldn't have considered the out-year rate reductions which are planned.

Comment Re:Pokemon Go to rake in nearly $13 Billion (Score 1) 79

Fireworks have been around in the US for a couple hundred years too - not once has the two week period leading up to a July 4th been extrapolated to annual sales directly.

I have no doubt that the P/Go app will continue to generate revenue - probably good revenue. But to imagine that even 10% of the vast majority of bandwagon jumpers are going to continue the game - and pay for it on a regular basis - is sheer folly. I'll be surprised if they hit 1/2 the 13B in 2 years - which would be less than the jump in market cap of Nintendo due to the game. We should have a timer on /. to come back in 24 months and see which of us was correct.

Comment Pokemon Go to rake in nearly $13 Billion (Score 4, Interesting) 79

That's what the story should be. If Apple is taking a 30% cut of it's 80% market share, then PG is projected to make $3B/0.24 = $12.5B

Of course, this may be a bit like looking at the June 20-July 4 numbers for firework vendors in the US and extrapolating that to how much they'll make over a whole year by multiplying that number by 26. This windfall only happens if the game sustains it's frenzy for 24 months. This isn't a normally mobile crowd, and the next big game (or new Xbox/PS) is always right around the corner. I'm not sure that's really a likely scenario.

Comment Re:New kind of pickup truck? (Score 1) 174

Show me a current model 1/2 ton pickup that has an electric drive factory option. It doesn't exist at any price. VIA converts Chevys, and puts the equivalent of a 4 cylinder NA gas engine (~300ft-lb peak torque, 150ft-lb continuous torque) in a vehicle which can only carry 2/3 the load of the equivalent truck (1000lb vs 1500+). Oh, and it's $80k for the equivalent of a $35k appointed gas truck.

The 3 majors have fumbled the ball pretty completely on electric / hybrid trucks. Hell, they've fumbled the ball on electrics, period. I would love a hybrid or electric full-sized truck. I drive an F150 and am looking at replacing it, but the only thing out there are gas non-hybrids. Chevy made one 3-4 years ago, but priced it so high and sucked so badly with the implementation that they discontinued it. Trucks used for towing (like campers for long haul) will still need gas engines, but a truck with a battery pack like the Model X - which would likely translate into about a 175-200 mile range with the increased drag, and more like 100 mile range when towing, would still cover the vast majority of small contractors.

Comment Re:Separate State and Economics (Score 1) 260

"protecting rights"

You mean like the right to choose a residential neighborhood that is not full of transients? Zoning is all about protecting the rights of people who own land - to ensure stability and compatibility of uses. People who are staying for 1-7 nights have very different lifestyles/uses than those of a year or longer. And if you start allowing incompatible uses into a residential neighborhood, you are interfering with the economic activity of everyone who holds their home as a significant portion of their net worth.

That sword cuts both ways.

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