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Comment Re:Now "fixed" (Score 1) 51

Go back to your job at Radio Shack.

Speaking of potential Radio Shack employees... changing the user string is a perfectly plausible fix.

Let's say you have a bug that creates an expensive UI watch thread. When you change your user agent the UI library will deliver the wrong version of the javascript that either is in a different commit that doesn't have the bug or the script fails to execute on the 'wrong' platform, raises an error to the console and dies (and no longer wasting resources). Sometimes a javascript thread crashing and being killed speeds up a website. You lose some piece of functionality you didn't realize the website was trying to provide and your experience greatly improves. That's the entire concept behind adblockers: trim superfluous javascripts to improve privacy and performance.

Comment Re:At last an article about clouds that makes sens (Score 1) 22

I thought "The Cloud" was just another term for someone else's computer. Back in my day, we called it timesharing. Long life TSS/8, TSO and Multics (and their friends).

Now you kids get off my lawn.

I think that misses the point. "The Cloud" refers to the commoditized outsourcing of certain aspects of maintaining a set of servers while keeping control of other aspects. Like: if you outsource the nothing, then it's a machine in your building that you bought/built yourself. If you outsource just rackspace, then it's an datacenter from the 90s. If you outsource hosting a VM, or scaleability, or distributed load balancing / replication, or worldwide redundancy, or keeping the host OS up-to-date with patches, or any kind of fancy bandwidth provision, or providing services like highly scalable data storage, then it's called The Cloud. Sure you could do those on Multics if you wanted (no one did).

Comment Re:Modern consumer solar (Score 1) 118

Don't let that experience sour you on PV solar. What you're seeing has nothing to do with the technology itself; solar works extremely well, even at high latitudes, when installed correctly. Ask any sailor, NASA engineer, or grid energy systems expert.

If you're seeing 45W during the day on a $10k+ array, sue the installer because it's malfunctioning.

BTW - You don't want vertical panels except at the poles (or temporarily when mounted on a heliostat).

Comment Re: Modern consumer solar (Score 1) 118

It's just some random off-brand from eBay I bought two years ago, but I've had really good luck with most of the modern panels with sunpower cells.

No reviews on it, but it looks identical to this one:

39W folding sunpower panel

Plugged into the PowerAdd version of this power bank:

32,000mAh power bank

... via a cheap "MPPT" controller (non-automatic) floating the panel at 17V.

Comment Modern consumer solar (Score 2) 118

Modern consumer solar is breathtakingly amazing.

We forget how bad things were just 15-20 years ago.

Earlier today, I set up a folding panel with sunpower cells; it was literally vertical, in a window, facing South. Total surface area.. maybe 3sqft, weighing 1lb. It was making ~20W for 4 hours, and managed to completely recharge my 130Wh battery pack in 8. Through a window. In the winter, in Canada.

The thing cost $120.

It's easy to get lost in the constant claims of breakthroughs while forgetting what an amazing time we live in. 20 years ago, this panel would have blocked out the sun and cost a months' salary.

Comment Re:If it ain't broke... (Score 2) 252

So, here's what happens:

As a product improves, it gathers users. This is a mark of continuing success.

Features are added, and users rejoyce.

At some point, the product plateaus. There are no new users coming in, and people start getting nervous.

A UI designer is introduced to the product.

"There's a whole market of learning-disabled children and moderately senile elderly folks we've been ignoring this whole time! They get confused by all of this rich functionality. Burn it to the ground!"

... and they do. They onboard a bunch of users who were formerly confused by features like "close all tabs," while their core fanbase deserts the product. But that fact doesn't become known for some time.

Rinse, repeat. Bitter much? Nah.

Comment Re:Liability (Score 4, Insightful) 477

That's it.

A lot of people don't realize that click-through agreements are mostly unenforceable because they're almost all one-sided contracts.

When you purchase a product, it's your to use. This right is enshrined in all kinds of law in both the US and Canada.

So "click OK to agree to the EULA/contract" is attempting to impose restriction without commensurate compensation. You already have the right to use the software, regardless of whether or not you click OK, so the EULA is not providing you any compensation. That makes it invalid, except when tied to services that you don't own.

But I'd be happy to see a new law introduced (in Canada, at least) that explicitly outlaws EULAs for everything non-service related, and severe restrictions on service agreements as well.

Hell, make onerous service contract agreements themselves taxable assets.

Comment Re:Flamebait opinion piece, not news. (Score 1) 241

"Why not both?"

Because we live in nations under the rule of law, we can impose reasonable restriction on those who seek to profit from our vast array of shared resources and capital.

The right to own and repair ones' property shall not be infringed. John Deere shall not impose upon owners, and will honour warranty obligations as required by law. Competitors shall be allowed to thrive, and service all hardware and software.

If after all of that consumer protection you still have a problem with John Deere, then you can take your business elsewhere.

But the two options are not mutually exclusive.

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