Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Get HideMyAss! VPN, PC Mag's Top 10 VPNs of 2016 for 55% off for a Limited Time ×

Comment Re: Read some Engels (Score 2) 245

Marx and Engels big mistake was in not realizing that despite the abuse heaped upon them, the powers that be at that time recognized at the very least that the notion of class struggle as a driver of history had at least some merits. Marx fully expected a series of revolutions in the latter half of the 19th century, and in some cases it almost came true, but then suddenly you see several nations, even the Austro-Hungarian Empire, for goodness sake, enacting liberal constitutions. In Britain, in particular, within 20 years of the Communist Manifesto's release, the Reform Act of 1867 greatly expanded the voting franchise, enfranchising a large number of working class members. This inoculated a good deal of Europe against any kind of Socialist Revolution.

What went really wrong for Marx's economic and political theories was that first Communist states were fundamentally agrarian states; Russia and China. These, even by Marx's own theories, were not yet at a point of economic evolution that they should become Communist, and in fact, the Communist rulers of these states, to keep with Marxist ideas of evolution, had to introduce vast industrial programs, almost trying to create a Bourgeois middle class just so they could fulfill the checkboxes on Communist revolution. The industrialized states that became Communist were pretty much the states that the Soviet Union forced into its sphere after the Second World War, and who had initially gained their industrial capacity through fundamentally capitalist means.

No one has ever actually seen a Communist revolution the way Marx foresaw such a revolution happening, mainly because, as I say above, the Western nations, whether intentionally or by accident, liberalized sufficiently that the working classes could join political parties, or form new ones (like the Labour Party in Britain). I like to imagine that Disraeli, crafty fox that he was, was at least partially cognizant of the potential for a revolution if Westminster didn't let at least some of the lower classes in, and it wasn't all about just taking the piss out of Gladstone.

Comment Re:Read some Engels (Score 4, Insightful) 245

You are aware that the last three or so generations, at least in the West, are overall the richest human beings that have ever lived. Yes, some are a lot richer than others, but the mean still is so much greater than the past that it's pretty stunning. Only the most impoverished go without food, and even the relatively poor have what can only be described as luxuries.

That's not to say any of it is perfect, or that there aren't people with boatloads of money that really should have that money. There are issues surrounding tax shelters (legal or illegal), corporate influence on politics, and many other issues, but to imagine those just go away because you produce some new economic system is absurd. The one thing Communism did teach the world is that there is always a way for people to get rich and use their wealth to influence the system. Changing the rules just means the greedy and powerful find some new way to game the system, or, if you get rid of the wealthy, some new group rises to the challenge and supplants them.

So I'm all for a fairer society, but we've seen enough "utopian" systems to realize that there is no such thing as Utopia, and trying to bring up the lower classes by bringing down the upper classes never ends up the way you thought it would.

As The Who so aptly put it, "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss..."

Comment Re: Oh boy (Score 2) 316

Well, unless of course, the actual citizen happens to be a child of Mexican immigrants, and happens to be the judge in a lawsuit where some of his victims, er, students, are suing him for bilking them out of money.

And as he will soon discover, if he manages to become President, for all this talk of how bad illegal Mexican immigrants are, the agriculture industry of the border states would collapse without them.

Comment Re:Oh boy (Score 4, Insightful) 316

You understand that in the normal course of action about the only thing a VP does is break tie votes in the Senate and, on the very rare occasion, when the President has to be put under for a root canal, temporarily becomes Command in Chief. Other than that, the only purpose of a VP is during an election, to try to ingratiate a President with demographics that might otherwise be fence-sitting. Picking someone with some social conservative views undercuts Trump, a man who though he may ape them from time to time, isn't really a social conservative at all.

Comment Re: drone ship landings require a lot less fuel? (Score 1) 101

I don't need to stand by the rotation theory. However, the 2.5 degrees that the Earth rotates are about equivalent to the downrange distance.

The first stage is going about 1/5 of the target LEO orbital velocity at separation. While you might well model the trajectory as a parabola over flat ground, given the lack of fuel I would expect that SpaceX puts a lot more care into their trajectory. So far I've failed to attract the attention of the person responsible for Flight Club, the most trusted modeling of SpaceX flights, but I'll message him directly.

Comment Seriously Slashdot? (Score 1) 49

I get that you need ads to pay the bills, but to go to the main page and see one of Outbrain's evil sub-sites with that tiresome "Melissa McCarthy's Gone" advertisement? What the fuck makes you think that anyone here gives a flying fuck about celebrities, or that such an obviously non-topical ad on the main page wouldn't be fucking annoying?

Comment Re:Pierce the corporate veil (Score 1) 123

In both cases you would still need to prove intent, not to mention means. Just because someone owns shares in a business doesn't mean they are in any position to be held criminally responsible. It would be like prosecuting the members of a church because the deacon is a child molester, for the apparent crime of attending that church.

Comment Re:What is the appeal of these things? (Score 1, Interesting) 128

I think that they're a fad in the same way that 1990s smartphones were a fad: the technology to build good ones doesn't exist yet. A watch needs to have a battery that lasts long enough that I never accidentally forget to charge it and end up with it not working (my current one is on its second battery and the first one lasted about 5 years) and be light enough that I don't notice that I'm wearing it. I have both of those from a Skagen watch, but if I could keep those requirements then I'd find it very useful to have things like my day's calendar sync'd to the watch, to be able to use it with Bluetooth for two-factor authentication, to be able to use something like Apple Pay and leave my wallet at home, and so on. Make it a quarter the current thickness and make the battery last a week and I'll happily buy one, but that isn't possible yet.

The same thing was true of Smartphones. It was obvious before the iPhone that there were a lot of useful things that a Smartphone could do, but until LiIon batteries, low-power WiFi chipsets and screens improved to a certain point, the downsides outweight the benefits. The difference between the iPhone and the Apple Watch is that the iPhone was released at precisely the time when the technology made it possible to build the useful thing, whereas the Apple Watch appears to be 5-10 years too early.

Comment Re:Hell No (Score 4, Insightful) 334

1) Chances are that "counterfeit" was made in the same factory line as the "real" one.

There have been a lot of cases of third-party batteries being made to significantly lower standards. Often the counterfeit ones are the QA rejects from the real factory.

2) Nikon wouldn't know if you you were using the "real" one or not.

LiIon batteries must communicate with the charger, some communicate things like serial numbers so they can tell it's a fake. A common failure mode is for the battery to expand significantly, at which point it may be difficult to remove it from the camera without causing damage that was obviously not done by the battery and thereby invalidating your warranty.

3) Relying on corporations to be sympathetic is pretty comical. Nikon doesn't care about you.

He's not relying on their sympathy, he's relying on consumer protection laws (you do have those in your country?). If I buy a battery from manufacturer A and put it in a device from manufacturer A, and it destroys the device, then it's clearly the responsibility of manufacturer A. If you buy a battery from A and it destroys a device from B then you're likely to have a lot of effort proving responsibility, and that's assuming that A is not some fly-by-night operator and still exists when you hit the problems.

Comment Re:Cutting corners (Score 4, Insightful) 334

As I understand the term, it's only a knockoff if it's attempting to portray itself as a different company's brand. Supermarket own brand ketchup is not a Heinz knockoff, even if it's made in the same factory with the same ingredients, because it's got someone else's name on it and isn't trying to pretend to be Heinz ketchup.

If the shoes cost $20 to make and you can get shoes for the same quality as Nike and manage to sell them for $40, making $20 profit on each one, then you shouldn't worry about putting your own brand name on them. You'll get good reviews and the value of your brand increases. The problem is when you make an inferior product and put someone else's name on it, because then you get the benefit from their reputation and they pay the cost when their reputation suffers because of the substandard goods.

Slashdot Top Deals

A committee is a group that keeps the minutes and loses hours. -- Milton Berle

Working...