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Comment Re:Hmmm well (Score 1) 2837

This, a thousand times.

I think it was historian Barbara Tuchman who said (paraphrased), "The principle thing we learn from history is that leaders rarely learn anything from history." She even named a book 'The March Of Folly'.

Comment Re:And to think the DNC wanted to face Trump... (Score 3, Insightful) 2837

I wonder if the DNC will get the message that voters want to make a choice, not be told who the candidate will be after their discussions in the legendary "smoke filled room". It's not likely, considering the inside-the-beltway articles that I'm already seeing that tRump won because of this or that. He won because the DNC insisted on running a candidate that was universally loathed by the opposition and whose only real asset was "I'm not Donald Trump."

Comment Re:And to think the DNC wanted to face Trump... (Score 1) 2837

Economic boom??? I take it you were in diapers or not born yet. I remember searching three months for a job, any job, and taking flipping burgers at Wendys because that's all there was. I remember entire families with little children sleeping in the streets because they had lost everything, something that hadn't happened since the Great Depression. I remember soaring deficits and massive layoffs and the highest unemployment in half a century. The only reason that inflation went down was because they stopped including food, housing, transportation, petroleum products and medical care in the statistics.

Economic boom my ass. The only segment that saw a boom was military hardware vendors.

Comment Re:User friendly (Score 1) 316

1997

Me: What's it say on the screen?

Margaret: I don't know. It doesn't work.

Me: You don't know what it says on the screen?

Margaret: No. It just doesn't work. Come fix it.

Computer screen: Operating system not found.

After popping the floppy disk out and rebooting the machine Windows NT launches.

Margaret: Well, I could have done that, why didn't you tell me that was the problem?

Comment Re:is comcast conning me? (Score 1) 141

What makes you think the lines are separate?

Experience. Phone lines, especially major feeders and trunk lines, are buried as often as possible. That's not possible for high tension and major electrical supply lines except in downtown areas where that type of very expensive infrastructure makes financial sense. The 'last mile' electrical cable between the substation and your home may be buried, but the lines to the substation are almost certainly not. Phone lines are easier to fix, don't require major equipment, and don't need to be brought up in a specific order, either.

I live near I-90 and I-405 interchange. Major traffic issues at rush hour will overload the T-Mobile and Sprint connections in our area (ATT seems to have more capacity), the end of the fireworks display or the SeaFair air show will bring them to their virtual knees. When we had the big windstorm a few years ago (2008?) we were without power for 5 days, but never lost land line. Duval didn't have power for two weeks, but had telephone service within a couple of days.

Comment Re:is comcast conning me? (Score 1) 141

I would keep the land line. People don't think about it, but in an emergency the cellphone network is almost immediately overwhelmed (even bad rush hour traffic in our area). For that matter many (most?) of the towers don't have backup generators so will shutdown as soon as their batteries run out in a power emergency. I live in the Pacific Northwest, we have earthquakes, volcanoes, floods, and a 70 mph windstorm will bring down so many Douglas Fir trees that it can take two weeks to restore power to some areas. During any of these our land line will continue to work as long as the phone line itself isn't broken, while the cellphone network implodes and melts down. Cheap insurance.

Comment Re:Mobile Phones (Score 1) 161

I think that will depend on the VR industry. Currently most of the VR headsets work off a smartphone, generally a Samsung one. VR porn is supposedly absolutely amazing and studios are starting to put out titles that really take advantage of its abilities. If the VR industry starts putting out decent cheap headsets that don't require a phone (and there's no reason for them not to, the electronics are cheap now) we may see smartphones become commodity devices, the way they should be. If they keep relying on smartphones for their guts we'll probably see at least one or two more generations of "I need this new phone because of X" (X being some nominal unimportant feature but the real reason will be porn, of course).

Comment Re:Stop chasing the shiny (Score 1) 161

Indeed. My wife occasionally tells me that I "need" a new truck. I tell her that the wheels haven't fallen off yet, so it doesn't need replacing.

I'm much the same way with my phone. If I hadn't finally broken it this spring I'd still have the four year-old $60 phone that did absolutely everything that I needed. I do have to admit that the low-light performance on the camera is better on the new one, but that's just a nice-to-have, not a need.

Comment Re: Colour me skeptical... (Score 1) 298

Falling from an airliner's cruising altitude to about 15,000 feet, where air is breathable and parachutes can be deployed, would only take a couple of minutes. For most people I think that unconsciousness would be preferable to being awake for that whole time, but if the pod maintains structural integrity there's no reason why it would necessarily decompress anyway (unless that's part of the design for some reason).

Just thinking about the whole thing, while I doubt the pods would ever be deployed on a commercial airliner I can see a market for thrill-seekers who might want to get dropped from 35,000 feet.

Comment Re:Colour me skeptical... (Score 1) 298

In flight the capsule would be pressurized, even if it depressurized immediately upon disconnect in free fall it would only be above 18,000 feet for two or three minutes. Below that you can breathe without much trouble, and the parachute probably wouldn't be opened above 15,000 feet or so. But yeah, they'd be too heavy.

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