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Comment Re: Not Quite Right (Score 1) 227

I actually used to have a DVR - home built PC, running Windows XP Media Center for years and then Windows 7 (still with MC). Finally dropped it and moved to streaming when it became easier to get more content that way for a lower price and not have to worry about manually skipping through commercials on recorded content. When cable went from analog to digital things got messier, and then when cable cards became a requirement I got out. Besides, paying for a high-end cable package costs as much as Netflix, Hulu Plus, YouTube Red, Amazon Prime, and something like SlingTV all together. Yes, Sling still has commercials... but its only used (in my home) for the things that we can't get through those other ad-free services. I still use the HTPC for viewing that stuff, but never bought into the CableCard thing. I did try OTA, but can't get much reception without a roof-top antenna (which is more than I want to deal with).

Comment Re: Not Quite Right (Score 0) 227

For those of us not as interested in illegality, there is also Netflix, YouTube Red (for normal YT content without ads plus some unique programming), Hulu Plus (a few things will have a very short, single ad at the beginning and end), and purchasing tv seasons and movies a la carte via any number of services (Amazon, Google, etc).

Comment Re:Hardware doesn't matter so much. Software does. (Score 1) 240

There are tons of applications where performance matters, and the differences between one desktop and another even at similar price points can be drastic depending on where the money is spent. Video editing, animation, rendering, engineering... just to name a few. Even if the difference is only 20-30%, saving that much time throughout a workday can make a huge difference in a user's overall productivity.

Comment Re:Performance (Score 1) 99

I dunno, my phone (a Nexus 6, so no slouch) is nowhere near as fast as my desktop - especially when it comes to multitasking. Granted, it may rival a 2005 desktop... but really, 12 year old computers is the benchmark?

I can see giving a phone a larger screen when to make some activities like watching movies more enjoyable, but it will be a long time before phone / mobile hardware is fast enough to satisfy me in a desktop environment. And anyone using their desktop or workstation for serious stuff - Photoshop, video editing, programming, etc - will not be pleased with a phone's performance, storage, or OS capabilities.

Comment Re:I don't like hate speech laws. (Score 2) 305

I would concur that they are a 'threat' to secularism, in that they believe and will preach in opposition to it, but the OP stated "Democracy, Secularism, and the rule of law, and civil rights". Using "and" makes it inclusive, and if even one of the four listed is not true then the whole statement becomes untrue. But I digress.

As for civil rights, I would say that depends on what rights you are looking at. Free speech, self defense, the right to life... all of these are fully supported by Christianity (both in general and specifically Evangelical Protestants) as far as I have ever seen. Now some of the newer ideas of civil rights, like homosexual marriage, are of course contested.

I also wonder what problem you - or people in general - have with someone spreading what they believe their God says? In the case of Christianity, the core message is that we humans are sinful by nature, that as such we deserve death (we all do die, that seems to be a fact), and that Jesus came to earth and died in our place so that while we may still physically die we can be brought back to life and live forever with him. That isn't a message that harms anyone, and it has to be taken pretty far out of context to be used to cause injury or lead people do commit crimes. Sure, people *have* managed to mangle it and other teachings to cause problems... but the same can happen with the philosophy of Darwin (survival of the fittest -> kill those who aren't fit) or numerous other ideologies.

And *if* Christians are right, but they kept the good news to themselves, then you'd be pretty pissed to find that out after you died. So they are in a catch-22, so to speak: tell people what they believe, and be persecuted for it, or don't and disobey their God as well as potentially harm people by not warning them.

Comment Re:I don't like hate speech laws. (Score 1) 305

"Is Evangelical Protestant Christianity a dangerous cult that is a clear and present danger to Democracy, Secularism, and the rule of law, and civil rights?"

I disagree with you - the Christians I know mostly fall into this particular section of the spectrum, and not a single one is a threat to or opposed to democracy or the rule of law. I nearly modded you down, but... free speech is important! You have your opinions, I have mine. An open discussion and dialog is more important than trying to silence our opponents.

Comment Re:Just turn off Windows Updates via Services (Score 1) 68

I tend to manually turn off a lot of that stuff, in so far as possible. Turn off Cortana, don't use the Windows Store (never seem to need it), don't use Edge (prefer Chrome), etc. At work, though, we recommend a program called O&O ShutUp10 for folks who want to automate a portion of that. I'm not sure how well it handled updates, though.

https://www.oo-software.com/en...

Comment Re:Just turn off Windows Updates via Services (Score 1) 68

Very true. My approach is to only re-enable after there is a major upgrade that would encapsulate lots of smaller patches - the rough equivalent of the old Service Packs. Oh, and back up your drive first! That way you get what should be a fairly stable update all around, and if something does go sideways you can just restore from your backup.

I do agree, though, that having more fine-tuned controls over both when updates happen and what updates you install would be better. I wish MS would stop taking away controls like that: its fine to default to settings that will automatically 'take care' of the less tech-savvy, but let those of us who are capable have more control please!

Comment Re:Smart TV is worrisome (Score 2) 457

That lack of control is part of why I still use a home theater PC. I can control what is going on more, and have access to far more entertainment options than any "Smart" TV or even a plug-in like Roku.

I think my latest TV might actually have some "Smart" features, but I don't use them and never connected it to my WiFi network... so even if it had the capacity to be used for monitoring, being off the Internet prevents any such nefarious use.

Comment Re:Belongs to the suspect (Score 1) 117

If that is correct, then the article linked to in the summary was in error. To quote:

"Amazon is contesting a search warrant from police in Arkansas, who are seeking 48 hours worth of recordings and responses made by an Amazon Echo that belonged to a murder victim."

https://qz.com/917790/amazon-c... (second paragraph)

Comment Isn't it the victim's Echo they want info from? (Score 5, Informative) 117

If so, shouldn't the decision about whether or not to release that info be up to the victim's family - whoever now has ownership over his estate? You would think that if the recordings would help in prosecuting the murderer that they would want to release them. I could see Amazon's argument if they were being compelled to release something belonging to the accused, but that doesn't appear to be the case here.

Comment YouTube RED = No adds, plus other goodies (Score 1) 168

Didn't figure it was worthwhile at first, but tried it on a 3-month free trial... and now I love it. Well worth the money, just like Netflix. No ads, some additional video content not otherwise available, and being able to play (audio only of course) in the background while using other apps on Android - or even with the screen off to save power!

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