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Comment Re:Because people can travel? (Score 1) 71

This would require massive amounts of additional DRM to insure the software was running in the correct region. Think of DVD players, and the reason I stopped buying DVDs.

For software this would be catastrophic. For anyone who travels software that works on one country and not another will be useless.

Comment Re:Airplanes are slower than cars (Score 1) 147

> If an airplane autopilot goes bad it would take many tens of seconds if not minutes for disaster to ensue.

Tell that to the guys in the bizjet who were killed when the autopilot trimmed to the maximum stop fighting a small control column force and then disconnected/"let go" and killed everyone in the back from head trauma.

Comment President-Asterisk Trump (Score 1) 162

Unless that tweet turns into a punitive regulatory action, then you've just lost a chunk of your savings.

This is a good point. We've gotten used to the Prince Jeoffrey phase of this drama, but winter is coming. The King Jeoffrey phase will be much different.

In less than 24 hours he goes from being President-Elect Trump to President* Trump, and those tweets might come with executive orders attached. (Twitter is gonna support that, they don't know it yet, but they'll do it soon, believe me.)

*illegitimately

Comment Re:Good counter-argument, but I think it won't hap (Score 1) 119

A law to the extent that "no autonomous vehicle shall be used to transport passengers or cargo for hire within the limits of the city. Violators shall forfeit the vehicle and pay a $250,000 fine" still supports the autonomous car, and would make the unions happy. Most big cities are deeply blue, and deep blue areas are the places where unions still have any kind of foothold and still exercise power.

Again, I think you're just being unrealistic in your assessment of how easy it will be to displace things like taxi unions.

Comment Re:Careful Seattle, payback is coming (Score 1) 119

If I were building a giant fleet of autonomous robot cars, guess which markets I would absolutely flood with them as soon as they were ready? Any markets that tried to block my human driver efforts today...

There's a gaping hole in your logic: governments that can block your human driver efforts could (would) also block your autonomous vehicles.

Comment Re: Ditch AT&T (Score 1) 88

ATT is gone, the company bearing the name today is southern bell company, SBC. ATT split itself up and sold all the pieces, SBC bought the name.

Someone else noted that you got the particular baby bell wrong, but seriously, how can you say "this isn't AT&T." It's a bunch of AT&T successor companies that merged back together.

"It's not the Empire, it's the First Order. Sure they've got stormtroopers, and TIE fighters, and Star Destroyers, and evil jedi/sith with their red lightsaber blades, and yeah, they've got an even bigger death star and they're blowing up planets, their Vader analog is running around with Vader's fucking head in his sock drawer, but they don't have Bell Labs and Verizon, so it's obviously not AT&T."

Comment Re:Startups (VC funding) should make $1million mes (Score 1) 408

For example, I worked for a company that was growing 80% per year, becoming a leader in a new business segment. They would quickly duct tape together some software that would allow them to expand into another chunk of the market, a chunk that will be worth $20 million in four years. Later, they can spend $1 million to go back and fix the duct tape mess. They net $19 million that way, incurring $1 million in technical debt to quickly grab $20 million of the market before competitors do.

While I agree the above is completely logical, the difference between technical debt and financial debt is that there is no one holding you accountable for paying back the former. There's also the problem that technical debt has its own interest expenses... you'll find that your initial shortcuts have been built upon, and those things have themselves been built upon, and you can't simply fix the original problem without incurring FAR more cost. Even if the costs to fix the problem haven't ballooned, the money people have no desire to "waste" that million dollars to retire technical debt. They'd rather spend by investing in another new market, or paying bonuses, or dividends.

Comment Re:As it should be... (Score 4, Insightful) 389

I certainly can see the benefit of living in a police state where everyone is hoping to get dirt on everyone else, but I also see the benefit of living in the US with it's traditional values of privacy and limited police power, where fighting crime is less of a priority than making sure the citizen is protected from having their home invaded by the cops or their stuff taken or their liberty denied without due process.

In any case, if I were a low paid tech worker, I think I would have significant incentive to fabricate evidence. $500 is a weeks pay, at least, for these guys.

Comment Re:cult of mac (Score 1) 168

The iPhone could not even reliably make phone calls. I had an iPhone, moved from my Razr. which was also a phone that did not make reliable phone calls. The iPhone did solve a problem that I had with the Razr which is effortlessly synching from my computer so I do not have to reenter data.

I wonder what issues there were with the iPod, because I never had any. I have a nomad, and paid as much for it with no memory as I did for my iPod mini. On the Nomad it took a Very Long Time, a Pournelle used to say, to fill the small card memory card I bought an additional great expense. The firewire interface on the iPod meant that I could move singficant parts of my then 20GB library very quickly.

It has to be more than gimmick. MS has been trying to do smart phones since 1996 with Windows CE and so far they have nothing. If people were just looking for gimmicks and integration, MS would have had more that 10% of the market at any one time. Blackberry, which was a good phone, fell very quickly.

One thing that Apple has done is fearlessly try new things. As a business machine, Blackberry did not have that luxury. Apple as a more creative and consumer company can throw legacy out the window, which is really what most people hate.

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