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Comment Re:Scotland just announced a post-Brexit independe (Score 1) 577

But Scotland isn't a new entrant. They are already members of the EU, albeit through association with Great Britain. If Scotland votes for independence the EU can just interpret that not as the UK leaving and Scotland applying as a new member, but England leaving while Scotland retains it's current membership.

As I understand article 50, legally it's too late for that. Even if Scotland got independence tomorrow there is no provision to abort the exit process and if an agreement is not reached the treaties expire automatically. They can get more time, but only by an unanimous vote by the council. Other than that "If a State which has withdrawn from the Union asks to rejoin, its request shall be subject to the procedure referred to in Article 49." where article 49 is the general application process. Which means Scotland would essentially have to qualify as a new country. I'm sure that if Scotland acts quick enough the EU could fast track the process so the beginning of their membership starts as the UK's end, but to formally follow the Lisbon treaty it'd probably have to be "new" which means they'd have to fulfill the current eligibility requirements. Besides the EU would probably want that, they hate the special deals some countries have.

Comment Re:Europe is the one that should be scared. (Score 1) 577

Not only have Europe's demographics been utterly destroyed, but their overall EU economy and that of the member states is in utter turmoil. Greece has been a disaster for about a decade now. Spain is only slightly better off than Greece. Italy is barely hanging on. There are numerous banks, including at least one in the economic powerhouse of Germany, that are on the brink.

Sorry, but this is pretty much made up. Unemployment peaked around end of 2012 and is for the EA-19 (eurozone) now within 1% of the normal levels in the early 2000s. The full EU-28 is actually doing even better. Yes, a lot of big spender economies had to change things when Germany refused to let inflation run rampant but it also meant the government stopped skimming value from the private sector through printing money. All the other PIIGGS except Greece have sweated it out and taken steps to cut down public debt.

And despite what you might hear about Greece, they're a fart in the whole EU economy. Germany alone could clear out their entire public debt by increasing their debt/GDP ratio from 67% to 77%, still very much within financially solid levels. They just don't want other countries running around with credit cards and sticking Germany with the bill. I too have a great many concerns about the future of Europe culturally and demographically, but as an economic bloc the EU is doing just fine.

Comment Re:Scotland just announced a post-Brexit independe (Score 2) 577

Scotland just voted to have a post-Brexit independence referendum. Without Scotland, there is no UK. Just the greater Welsh Hegemony.

Well it would get interesting as the EU doesn't let new entrants in on legacy deals. It's the euro, Schengen, full package if Scotland wants to rejoin. Which would mean they'd have to leave the pound and put real border control on the UK border.

Comment Re:If I owned it (Score 1) 53

I install qBittorrent about once every six months, then uninstall it again because it just doesn't do what I want it to do (specifically in terms of the interface and its handling of RSS feeds). I actually kept it installed for a while before what.cd died, specifically because it was whitelisted there.

May I ask what you feel is missing? It got an RSS feed reader, you can set up automatic download filters - simple and regex, pick what feeds each rule applies to, you can set quite a few other options for your RSS downloads than your regular downloads. I see it doesn't really have a smart filter to prevent multiple versions of the same episode from getting downloaded, but usually I just amend the filter until there's only one version in practice.

Comment Re:Too Late? (Score 2) 53

What is going to make the next version of uTorrent preferable to what's already there? I'm thinking that uTorrent's best days are behind it, and as long as 2.2.1 lives on Oldversion or OldApps, that is its legacy.

That's what I'm thinking too, I switched to qBittorrent that is open source and... it's done? Or well I see there's lots of tiny little enhancements and bugfixes in the release notes but honestly I can't think of a single noticeable change in the last couple years... nor any that I'd want, really. They'd have to pull off some entirely new non-torrent downloading functionality out of the hat to make me go back to uTorrent, which then begs the question.... why is it mixed up with uTorrent in the first place? Then again, looking at my peer logs a lot of other people use it (and by far most use 3.4.9), so I guess they have an audience. Whether they have one that'll let itself be monetized, well... whatever. There's plenty good alternatives if they get intrusive or obnoxious.

Comment Re:What will happen to humans? (Score 1) 373

What will happen to humans displaced by these robots? We live in a society that expects everyone to work, but what will happen when there are no jobs? Crime? Extreme poverty? Mass protests? Political or religious extremism?

Probably all of the above, to some degree... but there's still huge differences between Russia 1917 and Greece 2017. Maybe Venezuela is getting close to the "fuck it, I got nothing to lose" level but as long as society is keeping people from really hitting rock bottom I think most poor people will simply be poor. Absolute poverty is in strong decline, the "third world" isn't nearly as primitive as it once was, even if the US middle class has been stagnant since the 70s the world hasn't moved backwards. Just like if global warming kills the Gulf Stream some places can get colder, not warmer - it's the big picture that counts.

Consider it this way, even if you're really poor the OSHA won't let companies kill you at work. The FDA won't accept dangerous food, you probably have clean hot and cold water, decent sanitation and so on. Medical science moves forward, people live longer and longer. Building codes keep getting stricter, cars safer and my impression is that people throw more and more away because they don't like it anymore or it looks a bit shabby, not because it's broken or useless. If you just accept being a bum and collect cheap or free second hand stuff from thrift stores and flea markets and eat Ramen noodles you might not be living it up by today's standards, but it's nothing like being genuinely poor 100 or 200 years ago. Or the worst hellholes today.

So 43 million Americans are on food stamps today, if we get (more) robotic tractors, robotic delivery vans, robotic shelf stockers, robotic checkout counters, robotic this, that... people go out of a job, some get new work others go on welfare. And if you think that's a problem, you can always replace one bulldozer with 1000 people with a spoon... it's not worth creating jobs just to have jobs. Expect it to be just barely enough to calm the masses though, it won't be given freely or easily. But I doubt they'll let it slide so far that people take to the streets with "give me UBI or give me death" slogans, there's always the "viva la revolution" or "Soylent Green" endings. But I think "bread and circus" is more likely.

Comment Re:The are cashes FOR hard drives (Score 1) 109

Intel dabbled in this (as did others) years ago when SSDs were too small for most people. As far as I know, it was kinda shitty and only kinda worked and everyone abandoned it because hybrid drives were simpler (even though they too sucked) and SSDs kept getting bigger, faster, and cheaper. They called it "Smart Response Technology" when it launched. Maybe it's back? Maybe it never went away? Maybe Windows ReadyBoost has risen from the grave? (I've NEVER seen ReadyBoost in actual use.)

It's the same as far as I understand, just optimized for a lower latency high performance SSD. But to be honest, except for gamers I think almost everyone has space enough on the SSD these days. And even most gamers could if Steam only offered them two storage areas so they could put 1GB on the SSD and the other 29GB with all the media files on a HDD. I've gone all SSD anyway even though it's a waste.

Comment Re:Good (Score 1) 310

if you look at shows like M*A*S*H or The Honeymooners or Star Trek or The Odd Couple you find most episodes are self-contained, and that it's fairly rare for most stories to directly span more than one episode. (...) Sometime in the nineties this shifted, and TV became serialized (...) I prefer the episodic model, as I don't feel compelled to watch if I don't want to, and I don't worry if I miss an episode or if I watch them out of original order.

Because VCRs became affordable and common. About the episodic format though, I think you're one of the few that don't enjoy any character development or long story arcs but would rather have a series spinning its wheels in one place. It's okay to be on season two when the show is at season five, unless you're the kind of person who can't put a book down. Even if the show is mostly the same like Big Bang Theory it's much better with a glacial drift, major big boobs Houlihan and i-want-out Klinger were pretty much cardboard characters. Yes, you can totally pick up on any episode in the series and not hate it, but eh... these days my standards are a little higher than not getting bored.

Comment Re: Mint (Score 2) 499

What is with this obsession of Linux users to want everyone to be "advanced users"? It's precisely because of that, that Linux doesn't have a bigger marketshare

Same reason we don't teach primary school pupils and university degree math in the same classroom or why NFL teams don't want to train against high school freshmen or Michelin chefs aren't interested in advice from their colleagues at McDonald's. You're not contributing anything useful at this level, you're just in the way. It's open source, people don't get paid per copy they sell. Most aren't trying to win a popularity contest. They're looking for a professional community/tool to support them and don't want it dumbed down to be newbie friendly.

And some of them aren't exactly going to apologize for it either, in their minds you're the one butting in on a place you don't belong, like trying to get advice at a doctor's conference instead of scheduling an appointment. It doesn't help that some users act like you're their support staff and expect them to drop whatever they're doing to help you. It's very tempting to basically say we don't give a shit. Of course there are some will also immediately jump to the conclusion that any problem you have is because you're an idiot, just like all the other idiots.

Most software try to separate newbies from experts, developers from users with varying degrees of success since they're not exactly crystal clear definitions or mutually exclusive categories. And without one bishop in the cathedral to swing the ban hammer, it's not so easy getting rid of destructive elements. It usually takes some rather extremely obnoxious behavior to make a whole community throw you out. But if this is approaching TL;DR, well they don't want you there and market share isn't an important metric for them. Why should it be?

Comment Depends on the car analogy (Score 2) 499

I've been lurking here for years and seen many recommendations for a Linux flavor that works. What I'm really looking for is Linux that works without constant under-the-hood tweaking

I think the question really requires taking a step back and looking at what a distro is and does. Because if you're coming in from another OS I'd say there's three levels of changes and the distro-level is probably the least important.

1. Applications: Do your applications run under Linux or do they have functional equivalents like web services you'd be happy with. If you've heard about WINE, then stop because Windows emulation is full of quirks. It's a tool for users that really, really don't want to run Windows even if it has 10x the issues of running Windows software on Windows. No distro is going to help you if after banging your head on GIMP and Krita you realize that no, I really need Photoshop or anything else with less than a platinum rating on WINE. And even then it can break in the next update.

2. Desktop environment (DE), this is pretty much how the OS part of the interface will look like for you. No matter which one you pick it won't be like Windows or OS X. If a distro ships a DE, it'll probably look and feel pretty much the same across distros. If you don't like Gnome or KDE on Ubuntu there's not much point trying them again on SuSE, Mint or Debian. Granted, a few of these are almost like picking distros as I'd take Mint for Cinnamon and Ubuntu for Unity but far from all.

3. Quality of packaging, testing, support, upgrades, security patches, availability of backports and third party repositories, release schedule etc. basically a lot of the boring housekeeping and problem solving. For the most part, this is what distros do - they take what developers have made and wrap it up in packages for you. But if the developers haven't made the apps you want, you'll be tweaking your work process a lot. If they haven't made the DE the way you want, you'll be tweaking your OS interaction a lot. A good distro doesn't create fuss for you, but it doesn't really mean it'll work for you.

I'd just start with Ubuntu with Unity (the default) only because it's super common and see if you get past #1. If you do and don't like Unity I'd try Cinnamon, KDE, Gnome and XFCE, as far as I know they're all available as packages on Ubuntu. If you find something that looks right for you I'd move on to #3 and ask "What distro is the best to run [Cinnamon/Gnome/KDE/Unity/XFCE]?" Though I suspect that the answer will probably be one of the Mint or Ubuntu spins in most cases. There's not much point in going outside the beaten path if you just want to get started.

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