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Comment Re:Assumptions (Score 1) 776

Personally, I agree with you on eliminating tax breaks for big-oil. However, I hate the concept of charge-em-now and subsidize it back later.

First, that assumes those constituents can float the charge now. Many poor people's budgets cannot afford to loan the government money until tax returns are processed.

Second, It sets them up for being called "dependent" on the government subsidies, leeches, whatever. It's not honest to "fake" charge people for services you intend to later subsidize anyways. That is just an accounting trick and it makes people targets of political fights. It is far more honest to build-in your cost targets to the up front price rather than attempt to leave "retail" alone and later "subsidize". Far less loophole wrangling that way too.

In all, I probably agree with your idea for the most part, but subsidies is not the way to go IMHO.

- Toast

Comment Re:Scripts... (Score 1) 466

JCFP maintains an Ubuntu package which is stored in an unofficial repository1.

Attention: As of Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid, SABnzbd is part of the standard Ubuntu repository "multiverse". Installing SABnzbd is easy:

        Start the Software Center and search "sabnzbd" (or "sabnzbdplus"). Then click Install.
        Or, from the command line with "multiverse" enabled, type "sudo apt-get install sabnzbdplus".

If you use this method, you can skip the first parts and jump to "How To Start"

vent away i guess... just be aware that the difficulty you have in configuring it is the fault of the app developer... not a lack of OS facilities to make it brain dead easy


Comment Re:Scripts... (Score 1) 466

I have no idea what you are actually attempting to do on Linux but I get the feeling you are "holding it wrong". What daemons are you attempting to install which requires you writing scripts? And why in the world would you have to install daemons on any sort of recurring basis with just a couple of machines on a home LAN? When you use the package managers for Linux systems that should be taken care of for you almost in the entirety, "out of the box" per-se.

I haven't had an experience anywhere remotely similar to what you are claiming except for when I've gone off the farm and have attempted to custom compile applications downloaded off the web or from a proprietary vendor (i.e. very rarely). But I knew what I was getting into and which automated management facilities wouldn't be available to me when I did. That I occasionally had any problems doing manual compilation was not unexpected and help was frequently just a simple google away.

I've been maintaining multiple (dozens of) networks of Windows, RedHat/CentOS, and Debian/(K|U)buntu servers and desktops for years now (plus tinkering with other derivatives). They are all pretty good about "easy" and "just works" installations... with the expectation that you are using their respective package managers, repositories, toolsets, methodologies, and ecosystems (or at least packaging formats) to install software.

RPM/Yum and Dpkg/Apt really do take care of most of the work and neither are obscure by definition of the fact that they manage the entire distribution (and repositories) by default. Your equivalent problem in Windows would be a failure of you to understand (or use) Windows Update and instead attempt to install all of the Windows updates including registry hacks... by hand... without using an .msi file or the like and then pondering why Windows is so convoluted when you fail to get a working machine out of the ordeal. Nobody works that way.

Besides that, most Linux application developers will release into one of these two formats anyways (deb or rpm), so I fail to see how you could possibly be stuck writing scripts "every time" you "install a new daemon app" unless you are using something like DSL (Damn Small Linux) where package managers are not necessarily present. And if that is the case you are using the wrong distro for your skill level.

I've also had the opposite experience re: log files on Linux. Text and log files are cheap and plentiful when the command line is a useful part of your operating system. Normally I get such verbose logging from a failure that it actually takes a little bit of investigative work to find the original point of failure instead of all of the effects. On the other hand I rarely get log lines (only error codes when I'm lucky) from many Windows applications when they fail however...

Not to be too harsh but your "simple fact" is not reflective of the reality on the ground. Your perspective is "off" and I think you have failed to grasp some basic computing and usage concepts instead.

- Toast

Comment Re:Not New Coke - more Jumping Shark (Score 1) 786

I won't cry that Microsoft is going down. But surviving blunders... repeatedly... is quite a different thing than innovating, strengthening their brand, or building consumer loyalty. And to that end I haven't seen Microsoft do much in the way of effective brand building in quite a long time. Most of what I hear about their relatively decent products is "Well, it's better than (last failed attempt at something) and beats (intolerable shit we put up with for years)".

I think the most telling part about it is that IT personnel and CxO's are also losing patience with Microsoft and are in search of other options in many cases. They may or may not find what they are looking for but I don't see many people choosing Microsoft without first looking elsewhere for other options these days. I also don't hear people extolling the virtues of Microsoft products around the water cooler (even the new fresh-out-of-school types) anymore at all either. These days you CAN get fired for picking Microsoft (the inverse of the "nobody ever got fired for buying IBM / Microsoft" thing).

Does this spell doom for them? No, but when they sound like they actually like the direction they are heading in (and want you to join them in it) I can't help but agree that they are on the path of turning into another has-been... eventually.

- Toast

Comment Re:Idiots... (Score 1) 89

And then you realize that, within the matrix, none of those obvious tip-offs like wires and ports exist. This was either a reading comprehension failure or a failure of the summary to adequately explain the intended concept, but it seems obvious to me which implication they meant (scientists studying your brain within or from without).

- Toast

Comment Re:Impressive (Score 1) 174

(Impressive for a non-executive anyway, CEOs do this sort of thing on an almost daily basis)

I share your sense of awe with how fluidly this guy destroyed his life and his employer's business. If not just slightly more of a cynical take.

Someone should start the Darwin awards for businesses and their crappy employees for stories such as these. Unfortunately, unlike their human counterparts, they can resurrect infinitely many times from the grave and can replicate at-will so long as someone somewhere senses that there is money to extract and lives to ruin in them.

Scratch that. Someone just needs to come up with a way where corporations can be exterminated permanently, their assets released into the public, their business licenses incinerated, their responsible parties (CXO class) no longer able to hold a position of responsibility anywhere within the same industry for life and their legal team disbarred (on GP). If a company causes mass damage to society then it should require forfeiting equivalent+ assets (IP, patents, etc) back to society in return.

Personally, I'm not anti-corporate (believe it or not) and I do believe that corporations have a useful function and purpose, but I do believe that corporations should be just as mortal as the people who are victimized by them when they are mismanaged. (Monsanto, here's looking at you).

- Toast

Comment Re:Just cause... (Score 2) 153

If they were available in every corner store... at least there wouldn't be the drug dealers and criminal rings running them and people wouldn't have to trawl back allies or the hood to procure their "fix". Also, people wouldn't get stigmatized by the government and potential future employers (almost until death) if they were ever "in the system" or had received "help".

Maybe we could at least then focus on helping these people get out of their situation by means of programs like AA or other support networks (but for drug users instead of alcoholics) and help prevent them from abusing their other social relationships (ya know, like stealing money from their families for their habits) without making them a ward of the state or permanently unemployable.

A "recovered" alcoholic is capable of leading a healthy and productive life without much social or governmental stigma and what they can achieve is only generally limited by how much effort they put into life in general. A drug user who got "caught" however has no such opportunity. How many drug users which have been through the "system" are you aware of which later went on to lead a healthy career / family life / etc. after having been through what society prescribes their treatment should be (prison generally)? Can you not see perhaps that the approach we take with these problems is inherently and completely flawed?

These people who are drug abusers (of any sort), and those that are related to them in any way, don't need for them to be hacked off at the knees for the rest of their life. Losing part of your life because of a bad decision is one thing. Losing the ability to ever regain your status as a human being which is a normal part of society is basically damning these people for life and causes a multitude of problems for everyone involved. If they cannot be productive members of society they will become "unproductive" members of society (and typically with a grudge to boot).

There is a drug abuser who is abusing their peers ( and society at large) to get their fix. Society has a problem. Society throws them in prison and labels them a felon. Now society has dozens of problems. It's pretty straight forward.

- Toast

Comment Re:Potential applications (Score 1) 65

Years ago, I had a black dude come in with his kids and ask me about xbox at my college job, he was asking release dates or something, and I told him you could find that on the internet... guess what he didn't have. My point is never underestimate people's distortions of priorities.

Don't know if you realize that your statement comes off as having a secondary implication, but that same story works great without the skin color being mentioned:

Years ago, I had a dude come in with his kids and ask me about xbox at my college job, he was asking release dates or something, and I told him you could find that on the internet... guess what he didn't have. My point is never underestimate people's distortions of priorities.

If it was intentionally stated, you are a dick. If not I hope I helped.

- Toast

Comment Re:Evolution (Score 2) 232

Nature will ALWAYS evolve it's way around obstacles!

Except when it doesn't and the death of the entire species is the result.

Remember kids, above all, Nature doesn't make decisions or judgments. It just simply is.

If your species is under pressure and specific members randomly mutate in beneficial ways in time, your species might survive.

(Un)Fortunately for us (generally disadvantaged) humans; the traits we do have help substantially in this: language, knowledge, technology, and the ability to harvest energy for purposes other than simply feeding our bodies (which I'll generally term as "Leverage"). I say unfortunate because we don't have perfect control of this and tend to use these abilities to reduce pressure of one sort and increase pressures of other sorts at the same time inadvertently.

We could still lose a fight against natural pressures if we don't lose a fight against pressures we induce on ourselves first (which some would argue to be natural pressures just the same). The death of our entire species is not off the table (though it would be fairly difficult with how prolific we are).

Nature won't save your bacon any more than it has it "out for you" in the first place.

- Toast

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