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Comment Re:Watches are worn as bling (Score 1) 290

Watch collector/restorer here.

I don't like the huge, fat watch thing either. Nor am I a fan of subdials and other complications for daily wear. And here's the thing: for the most part ostentatiously big, fat, complicated watches are a low-end phenomenon. As you go higher hundreds and then into thousands of dollars, visual complexity shrinks until you are looking at something like a Rolex Milgauss for about $5000. The Migauss is somewhat fatter than I'd prefer because it's very robust -- it's designed for every day use. For dress use, if cost were no object, I'd wear something like a Vacheron Constantin Patrimony, which is 2.6 mm thick and 20.6 mm across. It's small, but the clean design means it doesn't have to be big. For that reason I wouldn't spend the additional $10,000 for the date complication.

Smartphones haven't eliminated the usefulness of wristwatches; they've just eliminated the usefulness of all the gee-gaws on watches for purposes other than telling time. You don't need the day/date complication, and you don't need the stopwatch or countdown timer, that stuff just makes a watch complicated to operate and hard to read. All you need is the hour, minute and second hand. I also make extensive use of a rotating dive-watch bezel for timing things like runs. When I rebuild watches I sometimes replace the face to cover up the day/date complication because it just clutters the design.

That's the problem with watches: it's hard to find a thoughtfully-designed, stripped down watch for under $500. But you can find them. One of my favorite cheap watches is a Casio that costs only $15 on Amazon -- I think of it as a disposable watch. It is very, very cheap in every respect, but it tells time as well as a $5000 Rolex and has similarly clean design. The only changes I'd make would be to improve the lume and remove the day/date complication.

Anyhow, if you showed up wearing a Patrimony I'd be impressed -- not because you spent $12,000 on a watch, but that you'd spent $12,000 on a watch whose value only a serious connoisseur would recognize. If you want to impress the ignorant, go big. If you want to impress the sophisticated, go simple.

Comment Re:Is this the same "One Decade" we were promised. (Score 2) 318

From 1997 to 1998 there is no warming..

Year to year warming is dominated by statistical noise, which is what I suspect you are trying to say when you say that there was no warming between 1997 and 1998; however for what it is worth 1998 was significantly warmer than 1997, so by your definition there is "warming".

The 'warming' in 2016 is insignificant. It is as straight of a horizontal line between the two points as you can make on a graph

If you choose two points you will always get a straight line. If the end point is 2016 and the start point is any prior year in the instrumental record, the slope will be upward.

If the temperature doesn't reach 1998 or 2016 levels until the next El Nino, then there will still have been no warming.

This is what logicians call "equivocation", which is making up your own definition of a term to make your argument true. What most people understand "global warming" to be is an underlying upward trend in temperature created by increases in greenhouse gases. This is overlaid on both year-to-year variability and of course ENSO. Comparing an El Niño year to a La Niña or non-ENSO year is an apples-to-oranges comparison. If you want to compare individual years to determine whether there's an underlying warming trend, then you need to compare El Niño years to prior El Niño years, etc. Or you an take a moving average with a window that's large enough to average out any ENSO events.

If you take a ten year moving average, in the last 40 years that ten year average has dropped three times: in 1975, 1993, and 2008; remained the same as the prior year once: in 2000; and has increased 36 times. If there were no underlying warming trend then the ten year moving average would be equally likely to go up or down in successive years; in fact it's ten times more likely to go up than down. 2008 by the way was an anomaly in not only was it an unusually strong La Niña, it was a rare ten year period with *four* La Niña years in it. If you take a twenty year moving average the last time that average went down was 1965.

Comment Re:Is this the same "One Decade" we were promised. (Score 1) 318

Who cares about a single year ...

The people who argued that there was a global warming "hiatus" after 1998, evidently. That is assuming they aren't liars.

the climate models overestimated warming by nearly 2x for the average for the last two decades and 4x for the last 15 years

Which models are you speaking of? NASA's global instrumental record data is actually quite close to the IPCC 1990 FAR model runs that correspond to the actual greenhouse emissions. You have to allow for for La Niña (2000, 2001, 2008, 2010-2012) and El Niño (1997-1998, 2014-2016), of course which deviate below and above the model predictions.

Comment Re:DGW - Dinosaurogenic Global Warming (Score 2) 318

I'm sure if climate scientists were in charge of things they would "put up". But they're not; politicians are, and politicians naturally worry more about being b lamed for action more than being blamed for inacdtion. They'd rather be forced to spend a trillion dollars than choose to spend a hundred billion.

But even if you are willing to take the hit as a politician, you can't do it alone. You need to bring other politicians around, and the public around as well. If you can't take effective steps right away, you take what you can. This gets people working on CO2 reduction technologies and businesses, and builds a constituency for more steps. It's like stopping a cattle stampede. You can't make the entire herd stop and change direction at once, you get the lead cows heading in a slightly different direction.

Comment Re:DGW - Dinosaurogenic Global Warming (Score 4, Informative) 318

Of course, the problem with focusing exclusively on the costs of trying to stop or (more realistically) slow climate change implicitly assumes that inaction won't cost us anything. In fact we're looking at costs either way. We're in a minimax kind of situation: how do we minimize the maximum costs?

There's also another wrinkle to this, which is that costs (and indeed profits -- every misfortune profits someone) aren't distributed evenly. The key determinant of how much you have to pay for or profit from climate change is how mobile your capital is. If you're a Bengladeshi subsistence farmer you're going to take +2C right on the chin. If you're a Wall Street bank you take your investments out of farms which are going to lose productivity in the next ten years or so shift to underwriting the opening of new farms in newly favorable places. In other words you make money going and coming. Likewise if you own multiple homes your risk from local changes is spread out. If the lion's share of your nest egg is in a house that is in the new 20 year floodplain or in the range of a newly endemic zoonosis, you're screwed.

So even if you can't avoid +2C without climate engineering (which might not be such a bad thing), getting there in ten years instead of twenty or thirty makes a huge difference. And beyond 2C, there are other benchmarks beyond that we don't want to hit in a hurry.

This is not a black-and-white situation: that we had our chance to do something and now there is nothing we can do. We had our chance to avoid this situation and now we're talking about how much time we'll have to adapt.

Comment Re:Is this the same "One Decade" we were promised. (Score 1, Interesting) 318

The "hiatus" in global warming was produced by choosing 1998 as the baseline year. Why was 1998 a good year to use as a baseline? Because it was, by far, the hottest year on record when it happened, shattering the previous record (1997) by 0.13C.

Now this is a news for nerds site, so I don't have to explain why cherrypicking an outlier as your baseline is dishonest. People who swallowed that are either dishonest or mathematical ignoramuses.

I will go out on a limb right now and say that since El Niño has passed an next year will be less warm, sometime around 2020 we'll be hearing "No significant warming since 2016."

Comment Re: Oh noes!!!!11111 (Score 1) 488

Well, you could argue that the reason you have to push women to enter coding as a career is that they're also being pushed to aim high on the career ladder.

That was the thing that made me laugh at the whole Barbie "I Can Be a Computer Engineer" fracas. Oh, it was sexist alright -- against men. Here's how I construe that story: Barbie is an entrepreneur who obtains free commodity coding and sysadmin labor from her male pals and yet retains total ownership of the resulting intellectual property. It's a cynical way of doing business, but that girl is going places.

Here is where they'll be in ten years:

Stephen -- works as a network admin where the pay is lousy and everyone treats him like shit. Despite the fact he hates his job, he's terrified that it will be outsourced.

Brian -- works as a coder. His pay looks pretty good, until you factor in the hours he puts in to meet deadlines management pulls out of its ass, the cost of his Bay Area apartment, and the time he spends commuting on the clogged freeway. He gets through the day with Adderall he scores of the neighbor's kid and comes down every night with booze. His apartment is full of expensive sports equipment he doesn't have time to use anymore. He's gained fifty pounds since he was in High School and will gain another fifty in the next five years. Brain can live with all this, but the thing that really bothers him is that when he does a great job, nobody cares.

Barbie -- Sold her girl-power themed indie computer game studio for millions, landing her on the cover of Time's "30 Entrepreneurs under 30" issue. She parlays this into a senior VP position at a hot social media startup, and after cashing out on the IPO joins an angel investor group. She's currently bankrolling research in parthenogenesis.

Comment Re:Technical OR legislative? (Score 3, Interesting) 336

Then small companies can no longer make any IoT product.

Not necessarily. It depends on what your standards and rules are.

Sure, you could write the rules in such a way that only big companies can afford to comply with them. It doesn't mean you have to. What's more rules could actually ensure small companies could remain competitive by creating safe harbors if you do certain things. Believe me there are lawsuits coming in the future, whether there is legislative or regulatory action or no. It would go a long way toward keeping the little guy competitive if he could point to rules that he was supposed to follow and did. This would socialize the cost novel attack vectors evenly rather than distribute the costs stochastically.

Eliminating the low-hanging fruit could make IoT devices reasonably safe, and "reasonable" is a much more attainable goal than "absolutely". Everyone fails at "absolutely", but only big companies can afford to bear the cost of that failure.

As for stuff getting designed in China, it's the low prices, period. I actually evaluated some Chinese radio linked flow meters a few years ago -- they were intended for metering liquor being poured in casinos (where the "free drinks" paid for by the casinos are acdtually paid for by a subcontractor and poured by a bartender who lives on tips). We wanted to adapt them for pesticide flow metering. The guy we were working with was selling these gizmos at $200, but they arrived on his US loading dock from China all boxed and ready to ship out to customers at a wholesale price of about $3. I was astonished. That's why stuff like that doesn't get made in the first world anymore, it's the jaw-droppingly low wholesale prices. Quality wasn't great, but with a $197 margin you can afford to ship replacements out for free.
Adding regulatory compliance costs to a device like that actually favors domestic producers.

Comment Re:I say BS (Score 1) 166

If you don't want to be homeless, build a house.

Homeless generally means both "not a landowner" and "has no money" which prevents the former even if they wanted to go there.

If you don't want to be hungry, go fishing.

Buy a license, buy a pole, collect bait somehow, weather considerations, legal locations, seasons, specific game fish, prepping, finding wood to cook with...

If you want to survive, get your ass moving instead of wasting the day pseudo-intellectualizing or lamenting about the unfairness of nature that has always existed since the beginning of time when it blew the first human village up with a volcano and the laws of the universe didn't even blink, let alone give a shit.

No, the universe doesn't, for sure. But people who are worth a shit, do give a shit.

WRT "get moving", to quote a fine summary of just one aspect of the problem, "I'm pretty sure McDonald's has an underwear inside the pants policy" (Source here at 3:31 but by all means, check out the whole performance, it's pretty much spot on from beginning to end.)

Comment Re:Another obvious defense against this (Score 4, Interesting) 424

I want a "panic" finger such that it displays a "could not read fingerprint - try again" message and then immediate sets "allow_unlocking_with_fingerprint=False" internally so that a password is required. Make it indistinguishable from the usual unlock failure message so that it's impossible to tell that it was triggered (even by examining the on-device logs, if that's possible).

Comment Re:easily made up in peripherals. (Score 1) 511

Your suggestion, in a thread about relative costs of systems, is to buy a custom piece of hardware, from a vendor who's website doesn't actually list a price.

Y'all got Amazon where you live? Or access to any of the vendors they list on their website?

But it's not like Windows can backup to thin air. You have to have something on the other end of that CAT-5, so it's probably a wash hardware-wise.

Do you know what I think when I see a website selling a product but not listing a unit price.

"Huh, I wonder if Amazon has them?" would have been my first thought, but apparently it wasn't yours.

Comment Re:easily made up in peripherals. (Score 3, Informative) 511

if things ever get too hairy for a dell, your restore process is entirely automated in windows or linux. restoring a mac is nothing short of corporate witchcraft.

To backup: buy a Synology NAS. Enable the Time Machine service. Configure your Macs to back up to it. Voila, done.

To restore from scratch: hold down Command-R when booting a Mac. Tell it to restore from Time Machine. Wait an hour. Voila, done.

Comment Re:There is something to that... (Score 1) 511

because Mac is like 10 percent of the worlds PC sales, and the viruses usually dont survive that far when the percentage of ownership is that low

That has zero to do with the relative dearth of malware on Macs. (Pausing for a moment for a pedant to point out the one or two Mac bugs they've read about. Yes, we know. It's still proportionally much less than Mac's market share so move along.) Macs are initially more expensive, but that also means there owners tend to have more money and therefore the machines are more valuable targets. There are also still tens of millions of Macs out there in the wild. Even if there are more PCs, there are still a hell of a lot of Macs to be owned for anyone interested and capable. The fact that they're not is an indicator that building a nice interface on top of a solid Unix platform is a good way to end up with a stable, secure desktop.

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