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Comment Re:OVH - the abuser gets abused (Score 1) 114

The complaints aren't being "ignored". You try to deal with as many customers as they have while still turning a profit and see how many complaints you get and what your response time is. Besides, if OVH disappeared today, all the spammers would flock to the next-cheapest hosts, and then Amazon or Microsoft or Hetzner or whoever would be the #1 spammer, and we'd all be complaining about them.

Don't blame the landlord for a high crime rate in the city.

Comment Re:Sucks to be her I guess (Score 0) 412

Sounds like a person with a mental disorder who should be receiving professional treatment, not receiving accolades for trying to extort money from the people who took pride in being able to raise a daughter and sharing that joy with others.

No kidding. It is the highest privilege and joy to raise a child, even for people who realize world acclaim and fortune. Everyone always says, with complete honesty and without reservation, that their children are the most important thing to them in the world. Unless this woman has an excessively dysfunctional relationship with her parents to the point that they literally intended to do this specifically to torment her, it is an utterly harmless act for them to post the pictures. 99.999% chance they just love their daughter. This is really sad.

Comment Re:Fiber to the sidewalk (FTTS) (Score 1) 44

You're either trolling, or you have no idea what you're talking about. The problem is that Verizon is not hooking up even those who have requested -- no, *begged* -- for FiOS for *years*, consistently, with their complaints reaching as high as regional executives. If they were just not actively hooking up those who didn't request it, that would be fine. But they are not actually providing service to *many* households that they pass, and there is nothing that a consumer without a lot of money and influence can do to make them provide service.

If they were doing this with their own private capital, I wouldn't be complaining. But Verizon spends an enormous amount of public money at all levels of Government on their FiOS rollout. They even take money that was earmarked for enhancements and maintenance to FiOS or the PSTN (the old phone system including DSL), and use that towards building out their cellular network. So even when you *give* them money to build out fiber and better landline internet connections, they won't do it. They can't help but be tantalized at the prospect of making $10 for every gigabyte of traffic sent or received by every consumer in the United States, and if the regulators don't stop them, that's exactly how it's going to be for an increasing number of people.

Comment Fiber to the sidewalk (FTTS) (Score 3, Interesting) 44

Apparently Verizon's strategy for laying fiber and building the next generation of Internet infrastructure for US consumers is to lay fiber buried underneath their street or sidewalk. Because you see, consumers don't actually want to CONNECT to the fiber; they're perfectly content with just the idea of it passing down the street in front of their house.

And for this, let's collect many billions of dollars in taxpayer money and funnel it to this corporation. I'm sure this will pay huge dividends for our GDP as our consumers become more connected to the global economy... through their $10/GB 4G LTE connection.

Fuck Verizon.

Comment Re:Completely wrong.... (Score 1) 618

Oddly enough, I actually agree with both of you (meta-monkey and Stephan Schulz).

From my perspective, if you look at all the currently living humans, meta-monkey is correct that some of them (many of them) will never, and can never be, brought to believe and uphold modern Western values of freedom, brotherhood, and universalism.

However, the way that a Western civilization seeking to change the behavior and values of another culture can accomplish this, is through two things: (1) selective breeding; and (2) waiting for those who will never share our values to die (preferred over violence in almost all cases); or, if they are dangerous, actively kill them.

Selective breeding refers to the idea that a human being born and raised into a culture that is at least not actively hostile to the Western values and way of life, is far less likely to become radically (militarily and/or ideologically) opposed to the West. So, being able to control the education of the young for the masses of a population of non-Western people is a very important point of leverage if our goal is to instill in them our values.

It also refers to the idea that those who *do* become ideologically opposed will tend to act on their opposition in some way during their life, and that their activity can be labeled in such a way that our government can justify striking them before they have a chance to harm us. The problem is that certain forms of retaliation or preemptive violence against these people will tend to radicalize a lot more people than are being killed by us; this is the effect that has made our problems in the Middle East worse over time, instead of better. Even if you are raised to value Western ideals, seeing someone you love or know intimately get killed by a drone missile strike is going to dramatically increase your chances of wanting to become militant or ideologically supportive of anti-West organizations.

We needed (past tense) to handle the Middle East problem more like we handled the Japan and Germany problem in the 20th century. Now the problem is so large that I'm not sure we can actually contain the ideologies that have cropped up against us, no matter how we choose to act. If we kill people, we just piss even more people off. If we don't kill people, they will sit there and fester; spread their ideals; gain power, influence, and resources; and strike back at us when they're prepared and able. Either way, we lose. Even if you kill every last one of them in that whole geographical area, that act alone will serve to radicalize people who sympathize with them from within the Western civilization's citizenry, leading to riots, uprisings, and heightened levels of terrorism that will itself be far worse than what we're enduring presently. Clearly, that isn't a viable option, even if you were able to morally justify it in your conscience.

While in a utopic world, universalism would be "by design" (due to all cultures on Earth agreeing to some basic principles on the value of human life, like the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; I'm not saying you have to be an overt capitalist), the reality is that it will now take many generations of careful efforts by Western civilization to properly control the cultures we've radicalized against us, and breed out the ideologies that are incompatible with ours and portray our civilization as the root of all evil.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure if we have enough time to effect any plan at all, before these groups become powerful enough to actually have the capability to destroy us. They are already turning our own governments against us by enabling politicians with authoritarian tendencies to enact laws that trend toward authoritarian goals and move away from traditional Western values of democracy and human rights. These politicians are perfectly content to rule by fear; when we weren't afraid of anyone, they had no platform to stand on. Now they do, thanks to our ideological enemies making everyone live their daily lives in fear of being nuked or hit by a hijacked airplane or any other imaginable "movie plot" disaster.

If these ideologically backwards humans succeed in toppling the collective Western civilization -- North America, western and central Europe, Australia, Japan, etc. -- it will plunge humanity into a second dark age, setting back scientific progress, moral progress, and human rights progress by several centuries. Higher-minded ideals will eventually rise up like weeds opposing these ultra-conservative ideologues, who in time will become the establishment; and over time the moral high-ground will win out... but it will take a very long time. And billions of people will die to hunger, war and disease in the interim. Horrible, horrible ways to die.

As long as groups of people feel oppressed by, wronged by, and hateful of the Western civilization -- rather than feeling like they are a part of it -- progress of humanity towards a future where we can truly let the values of human universalism transcend our values and way of life to the next level, will be prevented. We have to take that step together, as an entire race, atomically. It's all-one or none, as Dr. Bronner says.

I don't think you're wrong in your assessment of the present, meta-monkey. You're totally right. But I have to believe that time will change that. On the other hand, pretending as if the current peoples of the Earth are actually in a state of mind to fully embrace universalism, is indeed naive, but that doesn't mean we should lose sight of the goal.

Comment Re:why would you believe this guy? (Score 4, Informative) 66

Not even Photoshop; using "Inspect Element" (Developer Tools) in any modern browser, you can easily add genuine-looking markup styled exactly the same as existing markup on the page (identical font, etc.) with 2 minutes of effort and basic HTML knowledge.

Comment Re:Paypal, Tesla, SpaceX. (Score 1) 125

"Fail often, fail fast" is a horrible model for the space industry, though. Google's model explicitly includes taking mostly unproven ideas, shipping them in production, and seeing what sticks. Google can do this because the cost of a beta web application launch for Google is essentially zero: they just have to yank a few nodes of the Google Compute Engine cloud off the public cluster and allocate them to the new app. If the product doesn't improve their bottom line in the way they thought it would, they just shut it down and repurpose the hardware for something else.

You can't do this with rockets. There are external factors like planetary orbit and rotation, a finite number of suitable launch sites (safe, and in the right area of the planet to get it into the desired orbit), our distance from other bodies in the solar system, etc. Then the vehicle itself is stupendously expensive, and carries a lot of expensive payload (in the most extreme case, the payload has immeasurable value -- human lives).

The loss of a rocket and its payload is akin to a plane crash: if this were a smaller private space company, it would probably spell the end of the company from this singular event alone. But even the largest private space contractor in the world can only take a small number of these severe hits before it will go belly-up.

You have to mathematically prove out every stage of any rocket launch before you execute, and make sure that (literally) all the planets align to get it just right. If a rocket blows up or fails to complete its mission, it's not just, "oh well" -- it's a medium-term disaster for the company that requires from months to years of strategic corrective action to recover from.

Rocket science is hard, but the goal should remain "never fail, always get it exactly right" -- not just "let's launch and see if it works; if not, oh well". That kind of thinking is only expedient in software where there are no consequences for failure.

Comment Re:How is this a scandal? (Score 1) 56

Where are the stories about the "real crooks"? Slashdot is more or less a news aggregator, which means that in order for an article to get posted to Slashdot, it needs to have been covered by someone else in the media; Slashdot will then summarize and link to that media.

So, by all means, find some articles about the evil-doers you want to go after, and submit them to Slashdot. The community will decide whether they're worth being posted to the front page. Go ahead, it only takes a few minutes and nobody's stopping you. If these American companies are indeed as awful as you claim they are, it's worth a few minutes of your time to give the problem a larger audience, in hopes that the negative PR, consumer outrage, and maybe activism will take place and start to solve the problem you perceive with these companies.

Otherwise, you have no grounds for complaint.

Comment Re:manishs must be shopping for a new car (Score 1) 56

Last I checked, vehicles are among the most technologically advanced products commonly purchased by consumers. They somewhat-reliably and comfortably transfer a large amount of stored potential energy from chemical fuels into kinetic energy of human beings and cargo. They do this while keeping the inhabitants entertained, informed, and sometimes safe. These feats are accomplished using a fusion of mechanical, electrical, chemical, materials and computer engineering, with state-of-the-art research in all of these fields being applied to the manufacture of these vehicles.

It's rather interesting -- to me, at least -- when something notable happens in the world of vehicles, because almost everything about vehicles is inherently bound to technology. Vehicles also tend to be "stuff that matters" to those who are forced to commute a non-trivial distance to an on-premises job. Just because you don't sit down in the driver's seat of a vehicle and start typing commands into a shell with a keyboard, doesn't mean they aren't (interesting) technology. Slashdot never claimed to be a site that's only about [insert your favorite subset of the technology world here].

Comment Re:Does anyone really use these numbers? (Score 1) 56

Addendum: And in case your beef is with the EPA MPG ratings (or the equivalent in your country), here's a real simple technique to determine fuel economy for yourself. A dealer may not let you do this with a car before you buy it, but you could certainly do it with a rental car or a friend's car, or one you currently own.

Assuming you trust the MPG measured by the vehicle itself: On most modern vehicles, when you turn off the car, it will tell you your MPG for the trip you just made. This MPG is not an extrapolation or estimate; it is based on calculating the amount of fuel remaining when you turned on the car; the amount of fuel remaining when you turned off the car; and the distance you traveled. The MPG directly follows.

Assuming you don't trust the MPG measured by the vehicle itself: When you start your trip, pump out all the fuel in your car's tank and measure the mass. Then put it back in the tank, drive for a distance, turn off the car, pump out the fuel again and measure it again.

You can directly compare two vehicles' fuel economy by driving as close to identical of a trip as possible in two different vehicles while seeing which one consumed less fuel.

If you care about fuel economy but don't trust the marketing and rating of fuel economy by the government and/or the corporations, you can very easily do your own tests. Most people who actually do these tests find that the fuel economy ratings given by the government are not too far off the mark. If anything, the U.S. EPA ratings are slightly pessimistic for a driver who does not drive like a psychopath.

Therefore I think it is fairly likely that someone who all but ignores the fuel economy ratings when shopping for a vehicle is not invested in the reasons for caring about fuel economy in the first place. For that, read my prior post.

Comment Re:Does anyone really use these numbers? (Score 1) 56

Yes, I **really** do use these mileage numbers as a key factor in deciding what vehicle to buy. Though, actually, there are other numbers that are more telling of fuel economy, like the number of cylinders and displacement; the weight and physical dimensions of the car; the presence or absence of hybrid or EV drive; and performance.

It's all thermodynamics. Simple physics. Easy stuff. Let's see:

1) The faster an object accelerates, the more energy it requires to reach a given speed.
2) The heavier an object is, the more energy it takes to move it a given distance.
3) On a larger scale -- you know, for those of us who care about the consequences of our actions beyond what will happen tomorrow -- the more carbon you pump into an atmosphere, the more the sun's heat is trapped by the planet until that starts to have a detrimental and destabilizing effect on the ecosystem that sustains our current way of life.
4) Again on a larger scale -- unless you can prove that Earth has infinite mass, or unless you can disprove figures showing that we are consuming fossil fuels far faster than they are being produced anew, it is physically necessary that we will eventually run out of fossil fuels.
5) Last one where you have to care about the future, promise -- Without a viable alternative to achieve the same level of energy density as fossil fuels on a massive, global scale, once there starts to be a fossil fuel shortage, the economy will collapse, people will be unable to get to their jobs, and there will be chaos, war, famine and death. So maybe it's a good idea to minimize the rate at which we consume these finite fuels?

By the way, economics can matter, too, for those without limitless funds, even if you don't give a rat's ass about the continuity of the human species. What can simple application of economics to the above tell us?

1) A vehicle that uses less fuel to go a given distance will cost less money to operate, since the cost of fuel over a given period of time scales linearly with the quantity of fuel that you buy over that time.
2) If you spend less money on fuel, you will have more money to pay for other things you might need, or want. Or you can just give the excess money away to people who live in miserable squalor day-to-day to somewhat ease the human suffering of those around you, if you happen to be lucky enough to be extremely rich with all of your wants and needs satisfied.
3) Based on the above physics principles, combined with the law of supply and demand, it stands to reason that, once there is fuel scarcity due to more demand than supply, the price of fuel will become very high. If you are the lucky owner of a vehicle that uses relatively little fuel to get around, you will be much less affected by the price of fuel than someone who owns a high fuel consumption vehicle, regardless of the distance you drive.

In summary, unless you are a total fucking idiot, fuel economy matters. The **number** on the sticker mandated by the law may not be extremely accurate by itself, but it has been shown to at least have a positive correlation with the actual measured fuel economy of the vehicle relative to others on the market.

So yeah, go ahead and ignore every possible rational reason for caring about fuel economy and just buy whatever. When there are massive resource shortages worldwide in a few decades, nature itself will start taking measures to reduce the demand of fuel by letting the most horrible things happen to the people who are unlucky enough to be without the resources they need to live, and we don't have to do anything. The problem will "take care of itself", in a way. You may as well go out on the streets and campaign for war and famine, because that's exactly what you're doing by being indifferent to a problem that will lead to exactly those consequences if we do not all, as a society, band together to do something about the problem.

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