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Comment Solution: Buy legislators. All of them. (Score 5, Interesting) 163

Captain Obvious Competition.

Yep.

These companies already have your money, so updating a device that's already been sold is a needless expense. There's also a good argument to be made that updating a device hurts future sales. If your phone isn't updated, it will start to feel old, so you're more likely to buy a new phone sooner.

Yes. I have a high-end preamp-processor, updatable over the net. Plenty of bugs. Did they ever fix them, much less add new features? No. Did they release a new model? Yes. I have a high-end camera. Updatable over the net. Plenty of bugs. Did they ever fix them, much less add new features? No. Did they release a new model? Yes. I have a high-end radio transceiver. Updatable over the net. Plenty of bugs. Did they ever fix them, much less add new features? No. Did they release a new model? Yes. And so on.

The whole "we can update your device" bit is a scam (and often, so is the "we can update your software" bit.) The only way a corporation is likely to actually update hardware responsibly is if legislation forces them to. And good luck trying to get THAT in place when corporations outright buy the decisions of the legislatures.

Submission + - Free Speech Under Attack as Facebook Plays Judge, Jury, Executioner (techomag.com)

NathanBachman writes: Freedom of speech is under attack, and the perpetrator is none other the king of social media, Facebook. In recent times, the company, now a popular face of online censorship, has been shamelessly blocking accounts, removing pages, and deleting posts that either failed to strike a chord with the moderation team, or were brutally honest to the extent of becoming intolerable for the people in position of power. Will Facebook get away with playing god and silencing millions of pro-Kashmir, pro-Kurdishs, and pro-freedom of speech voices around the globe?

Submission + - 2016 Hugo Award Winners Announced

Dave Knott writes: The recipients of the 2016 Hugo awards have been announced. Presented annually since 1955, the Hugos are (along with the Nebulas) one of science fiction's two most prestigious awards. They are voted on by members of the World Science Fiction Convention ("Worldcon"), the most recent of which, MidAmeriCon II was held this past weekend in Kansas City. Notable winners include:

Best Novel: The Fifth Season , by N.K. Jemisin
Best Novella: Binti , by Nnedi Okorafor
Best Novelette: "Folding Beijing", by Hao Jingfang, trans. Ken Liu
Best Short Story: "Cat Pictures Please", by Naomi Kritzer
Best Graphic Story: The Sandman: Overture , written by Neil Gaiman, art by J.H. Williams III
Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form: The Martian , screenplay by Drew Goddard, directed by Ridley Scott
Best Dramatic Presentation, ShortForm: Jessica Jones: "AKA Smile", written by Scott Reynolds, Melissa Rosenberg, and Jamie King, directed by Michael Rymer

As in the previous two years, the 2016 Hugos were subject to considerable controversy, as highly-politicized factions within science fiction fandom attempted to influence the awards via a concerted campaign that influenced the nomination process. Those actions once again proved unsuccessful, as the nominees put forth by these activists failed to win in any of the major awards categories.

Comment Subsidies (Score 5, Insightful) 440

LMOL yes moron Uber competes with taxi service.

Sure. Any transport method that is used instead of another is competition. Walking, bicycles, private cars, motorcycles, skateboards, Segways, busses, subways, jitneys, hansoms, taxis, limos, Uber... all competitors that reduce opportunity for the others.

Anyway, the story is that Uber's earnings will be garnished to subsidize taxis. I wonder, would people approve if their bicycles and cars and so on were taxed specifically to subsidize taxis and/or other transportation methods?

It's fascinating to see the "this business has a right to exist, workable business model or not" attitude arise in a new space, and to watch the politicians be bought and sold accordingly.

Comment Re:When it stops moving, subsidize it... (Score 0, Flamebait) 440

If we all had smart-phones 100 years ago, today's taxi regulations (and the various boards enforcing them) would not have been created. Which means, it is time for them to be abolished.

I am so with you. No more smart-phones! BURN THEM! BURN THEM ALL!

Soon, teenagers might begin speaking to one another again; dress in ways that attract the eye; undertake outdoor activities other than "find that Pokemon"; and play games that develop co-ordination of more than their hands, develop whole-body muscle-tone, maybe even ask each other for dates with, you know, actual speech and eye contact. Maybe even kiss!

Nah, never happen. Bring on the VR hoods and nerve stimulators. Soon, "my teenager's in the cloud" will be a common parent's lament, and the most common teenage problem will be bedsores. :)

Comment Re:Responsibility. (Score 3, Informative) 191

If poor people are being driven to these extremes by poverty, then why isn't one of the richest countries in the world doing something to address that?

This is an insult to poor people. Like, "Oh, they are poor, they can't help themselves from murdering." Being a former poor person myself, I spit in your face. When was the last time you actually helped a poor person instead of saying, "Oh, someone should help them."

Comment Re: I Am Not Understanding (Score 2) 95

English is an official, relatively widely spoken language in India. The Indian dialect is separate and distinct from British English, much the same way Australian English is its own thing.

Furthermore, almost nobody would think Indian English sounds like Upper-Middle-Class UK, and people in the UK often find Indian accents distinct from their own, and perhaps even difficult to understand.

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