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Comment Re:Sanity check (Score 4, Informative) 197

From the article:

Total active mobile subscriptions or accounts -7.1B (was 6.7B in 2011, growth 6%)
Unique mobile users - 4.5 B (was 4.3B in 2011, growth 5%)
Actual mobile phones in use - 5.4 B (was 5.2B in 2011, growth 4%)

Not quite sure what that means... There are more active subscriptions than actual phones in use? Who is paying for a subscription without having a phone attached?

Comment Re:Truck "Repellent" System (Score 1) 371

That assumption has always been there, and people who ignore traffic laws are already a danger. Sure, there are situations when it's quiet enough on the road that you can safely ignore a few laws, but you need to be able to recognise those situations. When this thing is about, you'd better stick to your lane, or check very carefully before switching.

I've seen lots of times when lots of cars are blocking intersections or ignoring traffic signals. People ignore laws when it's very busy, just as much as when it's quiet. (Or at least it seems that way to me.) People are in a rush, or being impatient, or annoyed at someone, or is tired of being stuck behind the same traffic light for the 5th cycle, etc. I'm just picturing the traffic situation with a bunch of these things in New York City. Or Boston. Or Washington DC. Or Taipei.

Comment Re:Truck "Repellent" System (Score 1) 371

There seems to be a strong assumption that everyone is going to follow traffic laws... (Stay in your lane, obey traffic signals, don't block intersections, etc.) From my experience driving, that's a big assumption. It might be a good idea for them to have a traffic officer on the bus at all times, just to give out tickets to all the annoying people blocking the bus in some stupid manner.

Comment Re:Plausible? (Score 1) 371

Did you see the video? The cars were stopped at a red light when the "bus" turned.

You got me, I have not. (My company firewall blocks all video streaming.) I suppose that having these sync with traffic signals would make my point moot.

I can't imagine coins or shoes being any more of a problem than it is for trams that have been in use for some 150 years by now.

These buses will be running on regular roads (with some modification for the track of course.) The sheer number of people that will be walking alongside/across the path of these buses (I'm assuming) would be much more than alongside/across train tracks.

Comment Plausible? (Score 1) 371

Ok, I've got a couple problems with this... First, if that bus wants to turn left/right, then I'd feel bad for anyone who's underneath that bus at the time. (Or likewise, if it's going straight, and you want to turn left/right while underneath.) Second, people drive like idiots. I can't imagine how much damage a car accident with this thing would do. Third, maintaining the tracks that these things run on has got to be expensive and/or difficult. I can imagine the amount of loose change, or little kid shoes being dropped in those tracks.

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm glad they're thinking outside the box to deal with congestion problems, but I don't think this will work...

Comment Re:Let the rationalizations begin (Score 1) 1115

I write music for a living...I should only get paid for the first copy sold?

I don't think anyone is saying that... Piracy will be around, it always has been, and always will. If you are a very good musical artist, you will make lots of money. (i.e. Taylor Swift.) If you produce a good movie, you will make lots of money (i.e. The Dark Knight.) And by 'good', I don't mean what you think is good, it's what most other people think is good. There are still movies nowadays that make lots of money, there are still musical artists that make lots of money today. Even with all the piracy that's going on. Consumers will pay for what they think is a good value, at whatever price they think is a good price.

Comment Re:I think there's something to that (Score 1) 1115

If I had mod points, I'd mod you up.

I totally agree. In fact, I remember a few years back, I had bought a legitimate copy of Civ III Complete. Well, when I tried to install and run the game, it complained of a SecureROM error. I went back to Best Buy, exchanged my copy with a different copy of Civ III, and it didn't work either. Apparently, they got too enthusiastic with their anti-piracy software, and lost a sale because of it (AND I was trying to do the right thing, buying a legitimate version of the software.) I found out later that there are DRM issues with the game, so I just went without.

Now, if I had just gotten a pirated version of the game, it would've had something I could use.

Comment Re:..for less than 1 minute (Score 1) 454

I've got he same problem. I've got a Dell Inspiron 6000. It's a bit old and runs Windows XP. I could pretty much power on the PC, and by the time I log in, it'll power off due to running out of charge. From what I've been told, batteries have a certain number of 'cycles'. Use them up, and the battery doesn't hold much of a charge anymore. Unfortunately, most laptops will start recharging the battery when it depletes (on it's own) to below 95%. Then it would start recharging the battery, wasting one of your 'cycles'. I've had much more luck (with one of my older laptops) where I would never plug the battery in (unless I needed to charge it in preparation for a trip.) The battery lasted much longer when I needed it to.

Comment Re:PowerPoint makes us stupid (Score 1) 233

They actually teach this in the intro engineering classes. Ironically enough with a powerpoint presentation about the subject of make pp presentations. Unfortunately very few of the professors are required to learn this skill, often with the poor practices that you mention or worse.

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