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Comment Idiotic article summary (Score 1) 470

The majority of ebooks are poorly formatted because the publisher didn't keep an actual digital copy on hand for anything made before the last 3 years and had an intern OCR a paperback and maybe do some cursory typo fixing at best. "Programmers" don't generally make ebooks normally, the article was about a specific case where an individual book was packaged as a stand-alone ipad app.

Comment Re:It's too late (Score 3, Insightful) 428

The cartels already have the capital. If drugs get legalized, they'll just move more heavily into kidnapping and slavery.

Same thing as after Prohibition, organized crime just moved into other territories. There is no way to turn back the clock and prevent the cartels from coming to power in the first place.

Not that this is an argument against legalization, mind you. It's just the observation that one particular argument for legalization doesn't hold that much weight.

That's a poor counter-argument. The cartels are already heavily involved in those other areas as they are profitable, and it's not like the demand for sex slaves is going to double just because people aren't buying illegal drugs. If there was additional unserved demand in those areas, they would already be exploiting it.

Comment Re:Don't forget education itself (Score 1) 791

Combine this with the education system in most states being a complete disaster and you the cycle is complete.

- California (as an example) refuses to expand the community college system to offer basic 4 year degrees. Back in the 1960s and 1970s, the state college system had nominal fees barely above community college levels and so anyone could get a degree for a fairly low amount of money. Now, the prices have skyrocketed to where it's not worth getting a degree unless you are sure that there is a payoff. $5000+ a quarter at UC schools prices any college education out of the realm of the average worker or the under-employed who is looking for a second career to potentially train into. Also, they have limited acceptance to local residents(foreigners are still accepted from anywhere of course), which means you are stuck with one of 2 or 3 possible choices. Which are full for the next 2-3 years as I speak.

Fully half of the UC and Cal State system is clogged with idiots getting degrees in worthless stuff like political science, ethnic studies, and religion. People who want real degrees can't get in because of the sheer number of useless degrees still offered that only lead to either teaching the same if you are lucky enough, or a job answering phones since it's useless in the workplace now. If you look at India(as an example), there's virtually no wasted space. All of the schools offer a few basic degrees and little filler. Even if you could get in past the waiting list into one of your local schools, the programs are all full.

To add insult to injury, colleges in many other countries are affordable or are nearly free. For those stuck here in the U.S., even the cheapest options are impossible to afford while the rest of the world essentially floods in and displaces our workers with ones that paid almost nothing for their degrees.

Your only option then is private schools. But at $20K+ a year, that's impossible short of a scholarship. Re-training is impossible unless you have money already. Catch-22.

- The employers also feel that they can demand ever-increasing skills at ever-decreasing wages, pretty much because they can get away with it. Why not if all of these fortune 100 companies can do it? There's always some worker from overseas who can do the job for $30K a year. Or some starving ex-employee in their 50s who will work for intern wages. It's now affecting computer fields as well, where jobs have split into two fields - high end database and critical programmers and everyone else who is just a wage-slave in a cubicle or at a workbench. Jobs that used to pay 40-60K a year are now being offered for $12 an hour. With no benefits, 401K, or perks.

Fact: You can make more money and get better benefits working for In-and-Out Burger than from most jobs these days that require a BS degree. If you have a Masters, you're still in good shape, but that also is quickly eroding.

The only way to solve it it to slam the doors shut, kick out the temporary visa workers, and force companies to hire only U.S. workers(or those few with permanent visas of course). Note - most OTHER nations do this sort of thing already and help protect their industry.

They allow as many foreign students in as they can get because they can charge them significantly more. As a resident, the state is subsidizing a significant portion of your tuition, with most of the recent fee increases being decreases in the level of subsidy. For example, when I was attending Cal State Northridge, my undergrad tuition was about $3000-4000 per year towards the end of my degree. It started out at under $1300 when I had started in 2000. My wife, who was then an international student, was paying over $17,000 a year the entire time.


Submission + - Cosmonaut Crashed Into Earth 'Crying In Rage' (npr.org) 2

schwit1 writes: This extraordinarily intimate account of the 1967 death of a Russian cosmonaut appears in a new book, Starman, by Jamie Doran and Piers Bizony, to be published next month. The authors base their narrative principally on revelations from a KGB officer, Venymin Ivanovich Russayev, and previous reporting by Yaroslav Golovanov in Pravda. This version — if it's true — is beyond shocking.

Comment Re:Indie scene is pretty neat... (Score 1) 315

Nope, that was unrelated. Penny Arcade did a comic series on Minecraft, and the resulting traffic buckled Notch's homegrown registration/payment/account management system. He moved it to the Amazon Cloud over the weekend and has been optimizing the minecraft.net site since then.

Comment Re:Been running Eyefinity, my thoughts... (Score 1) 111

Nvidia users are supposed to get triple-head gaming with SLI support later in April with the new driverset for Fermi. It will require two or more cards in SLI as they only offer dual output cards. The feature name is 3d Vision Surround, but the triple-head feature is not tied to the 3d vision part.

Comment Re:Absorbed not necessarily equal to electricity (Score 1) 439

The problem with current panels isn't the efficiency. More efficiency is welcome but the real problem with solar panels is the cost. It takes too many years to recoup the very heavy initial investment. If the price can be made such that the panels pay for themselves with 2 or 3 years then they make solar power a real alternative to the grid.

We have relatively cheap panels as well, but their problem is low efficiency. The current higher efficiency panels usually need exotic materials and manufacturing processes. If this new tech can replace both groups of cells, then it would be a huge boon.

Comment Re:Sweet spot (Score 1) 1027

If you reverse a charge for goods or services that were actually delivered to you, you are committing fraud and deserve to have your account suspended. Their refund policy is clearly stated, and you agree to it whenever you make a purchase.

I was unable to play the game due to a widely reported problem. So the service was in fact NOT delivered to me.

Of course the game was delivered to you, you just had a technical problem with your PC preventing you from actually playing it. This isn't any different than when you buy physical media from a retail store. If you had the same issue with a physical copy of a PC game and tried to take it back to Best Buy, they would have told you to piss off because you had already opened it. There are plenty of legitimate things to criticize about digital distribution in general and Steam in particular, but this isn't really one of them as it applies equally to physical media.

Comment Re:Sweet spot (Score 0, Troll) 1027

But the important thing is they told me the refund they gave me was a one time thing. Even though I asked for it within 48 hours of the purchase I was treated like I tried to download the game, play it, and return it. And if you reverse the charge on your card? Your account is suspended and you lose ALL your games. .

If you reverse a charge for goods or services that were actually delivered to you, you are committing fraud and deserve to have your account suspended. Their refund policy is clearly stated, and you agree to it whenever you make a purchase.

Comment Re:Sweet spot (Score 2, Informative) 1027

You opted in because you left the game on "Always Keep This Game Up-To-Date". Of course, if you re-downloaded the game from scratch I'd imagine you wouldn't have a choice as it would install the newest update. Ultimately, this is the game developer's fault, not Steam. They chose to patch their game with that content and make that the default patch level on Steam. Steam is just the distribution platform, they don't have any creative or content control regarding the games.

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