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Comment Bank of America started that conversion last year (Score 1) 71

Since Summer of 2016, I've been using my iPhone Apple Wallet at Bank of America ATMs in the San Francisco/Silicon Valley area and Chicago. January road trip between Buffalo, NY and El Paso Tx, (don't ask) I used it a few times also, but don't remember the cities.

I don't carry an ATM card anymore, even for back up.

Comment What a bunch of 21st century Luddites! (Score 1) 536

Lets see

People complained about electronic locks when a mechanical key would do fine

DOS users complained about how the mouse was for simpletons
Then complained about trackpads replacing mice,

Records replaced by tapes, then DVDS, then by streaming

ATMs replaced tellers, then went online

RFIDs replaced bar codes which had replaced stamping a price on each retail item

Credit cards replaced checks, and are replaced by electronic wallets

Copper wire based phones were replaced by cellular and Internet based phones

Add your 20-30 favorites implementations here.

All in the last 50 years since the simple audio jack came out.

How about instead of whining and complaining about technologies and products you don’t like or want, you just but something else.

Spend your electrons elsewhere.

Apple and Google (et al) experiment on technologies, glasses, social networks, chips, screens, VR, cloud stores, Lightning, Thunderbolt and USB-C connectors, Bluetooth and NFC. That’s why they are in business and you are all pundit wannabes.

Get over yourselves.

Comment Re:The reason for these laws: Emotional rights (Score 1) 728

I agree, some of my argument is ‘appeal to emotion’ and written as an emotional response. (I am not Spock.)

As humans, I believe many of our responses to evil, be it murder, child molestation, slavery, genocide, rape, prisoner abuse, certain government actions, violations of our perceived ‘rights' - are all emotional. There are people who, based on their emotional beliefs, make logical arguments for those actions (think ISIS, Stalin and Abu Ghraib - not to say that the last is anywhere near the evil magnitude of the first two examples).

Also, as people, cultures or countries, we determine which rights (i.e. laws) we grant to ourselves and how extremely we interpret their interaction. Fortunately, those change over time, we select new rights and sunset old ones (e.g. the right to treat people as property, aka slavery, also in the Constitution), but it would be hard to argue that emotions weren't involved. The 'logic' seems to follow whatever people emotionally determine to implement as rights (e.g. freedom from a king). Some people and countries are more collectivist, some more individual rights oriented, some religious, some believe in government driven economies, some prefer less government influence, some don't like their history denied, others edit their history liberally - all believe they are logical and often for 'the good of the epeople'.

So reducing it to emotional questions, demonstrates to me the ridiculousness of trying to impose America's version of rights into other environments and conversely the reverse:
Does ISIS have the right to come to your local schools and spread their message in the name of Free Speech? Should somebody from Syria lecture you about their ‘rights.'
Does Baidu have the right to publish results in the US that include misleading statements about corporations and stocks that have been pre-censored by it's government to encourage people to invest or subsidize Chinese industries? Should the US government require that type of information be removed or blocked? [BTW, I don’t think Baidu is wrong or evil, they are providing a service within the confines of their culture and legal system.]

In the end, who determines where the rights of one country intersect the rights of another? Don’t forget your ‘right to privacy’ from some foreign (or domestic) power.

Comment Re:The reason for these laws: Evil OK if wrapped i (Score 3, Insightful) 728

Is the argument that evil, at any extreme, has the right to expression, in the name of free speech?

Does it follow then that you are willing to have the representatives from ISIS come to your local high schools and colleges and use their persuasive tactics to entice your neighbors and their children to massacre innocents in the name of some evil interpretation? Sleep well.

Why shouldn’t a country that has experienced an evil, magnitudes greater than ISIS, be allowed to determine what can, and what cannot, be said or distributed in its borders? [Remember, Americans think God gives them the right to pollute and police the world and everyone’s rights - it printed right on the dollar bill; “In God We Trust.”]

If you live in a country that interprets an eighteenth century individual ‘right', without taking 21st century technology into the equation, you are probably amongst the group that thinks some other 18th century ‘right’ also applies to 21st century weapons.

Fortunately only one country in the first world actually thinks that way. It’s also the same country with hundreds of religions that similarly interpret wisdom from preachers 2,000+ years ago as if nothing else has changed in the mean time. Those 'right thinking' people also control the dozens of states that allow Creationism to be taught as science, and they want their ‘rights' to have that interpretation included on national test standards. Twisted logic isn’t it?

Facebook operates and makes profit in many countries with limitations on information and the distribution of personal data. (China, Egypt, Dubai, Russia, India, EU etc.) they can and should respect German law in that country, or they should choose not to do business there. Easy. When Google couldn’t follow Chinese rules of censorship, they chose not to do business there. Today, Google’s principles have compromised the profit is more important than some ‘rights’.

There is no American ‘right’ to project its labyrinthine 18th century concepts into other countries where people consciously choose to limit the right of ISIS (or Nazis) to talk to their impressionable youth.

To paraphrase Zhou Enlai, "Let’s all check back in a hundred years and see if the American experiment continued to work.” No need for the rest of the world to follow them over a cliff.

Submission + - If it smells like an Apple Watch Cicret bracelet scam.... (

digitalFlack writes: ..... it probably is.

This little ploy seems to have gone viral...... sophisticated Youtube video and Wordpress page solicits 'donations' for prototyping a Cicret Band that shows an iPhone projected onto your wrist... throw away the glass!

Beautifully done video on YouTube, then they, with a bit of misdirection, solicit for the Cicret App — which is a piece of junk app for collecting email. If you DONATE, they can claim they took your money as a donation and didn’t promise you anything (hey, this isn't Kickstarter)

Last they say, after raising 300,000 Euros, they will build a prototype Apple Watch killing bracelet with the next 700,000 euros. So nothing exists (or currently can be built) but they can build any piece of plastic and call it a prototype.

They don’t mention any technologies, magic sauce, or even what happens when you wear a coat or jacket.. it’s hilarious!

I have dealt with Paypal and non-US transactions.. since you are sending a 'donation' out of the US, American credit card law does not make Visa or Master Card give you your money (oops, donation) back, even if you decide you have been snookered.


Submission + - Microsoft Buys Nokia's Phone Business ( 1

Frosty Piss writes: Microsoft is buying practically all of Nokia’s handset business as part of a $7.2 billion deal, the two companies announced today. Microsoft is paying for Nokia’s Devices and Services Business. In addition, it is paying to license Nokia’s patents and to license and use Nokia’s mapping services. Microsoft using its overseas cash reserves to fund the transaction, which is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014, subject to approval by Nokia’s shareholders and regulatory approval, according to a news release.

Submission + - Yahoo deletes journalists prepaid legacy site after suicide (

digitalFlack writes: Apparently Martin Manly has been a popular blogger and newspaper journalist for many years. For his own reasons, no indication of illness, he decided sixty years on this planet was enough. He designed a 40 page website with titles such as:
      "Why Suicide?," "Why Age 60?," "Growing Up," "The Heavens,"
        "First Two Loves," "Pictures," "KC Star," "Legal," "911 & Conspiracies" and "COOL STUFF."
Martin planned his suicide meticulously, but to manage his legacy — HE PICKED YAHOO! Even pre-paid for five years... After he left this mortal coil on his 60th birthday, Yahoo decided they don't want his traffic, so they took the site down. Sorry, Martin.

Comment Author didn't get the memo right (Score 1) 395

Wow, an author from the online Atlantic needed a subject and found an intellectual from the Brookings Institute with an opinion on Silicon Valley. Better warn Apple before they spend a gazillion dollars in SV on a spaceship for their 25,000 employees. And Google, eBay, Oracle, HP,, Microsoft (SV), Lockheed, the incubators, and Stanford need to get the memo... their 250,000 jobs will be in San Francisco and Oakland soon! And San Francisco better start building schools for their children..(BTW, S.F. is the largest school district in the country with a shrinking enrollment... the re-gentrification is raising prices so much that working and middle class are moving out.) These companies and the university create the spin-offs that attract the VC and the talent pool can't (and wouldn't) just up and move to Oakland, or Austin, or Chicago. The author mistakes regular seepage from Silicon Valley for a mass migration. Of course there are other opportunities and locales near S.V. and around the country, but for a long time the S.V. tech star will continue to have critical mass and to suck the majority of the VC funding into its orbit.

Every few years some academic looks at a growth spurt (like Pixar, Leap Frog and IKEA in a small town like Emeryville) and makes social and economic forecasts that can't be implemented in the real world. Then journalists assume that their academic degree validates the theory - and write these silly puff pieces.

How about next time we Spare the Electrons!

Submission + - Foxconn's Robot Army Now 20,000 Strong (

itwbennett writes: Slashdot readers will recall Foxconn's plans to staff its factories with an army of 1 million robot workers to offset rising labor costs. Well, now we have an update on those plans. Speaking at the company's shareholder meeting on Wednesday, Foxconn CEO Terry Gou said that there are 20,000 robotic machines currently at work in Foxconn factories. Ultimately, these robots will replace human assembly workers and 'our [human] workers will then become technicians and engineers,' Gou said.

Submission + - Germany :Remote-Control Model Plane Attack 'Foiled' (

garymortimer writes: Two aeronautics students planned to use remote-controlled model planes packed with explosives to carry out terrorist attacks in Germany, according to prosecutors.

German authorities are holding two men of Tunisian origin who they say are facing possible charges for the “preparation of a serious, state-threatening act of violence”.

Prosecutors say the men are suspected of “procuring information and objects to commit Islamic extremist explosive attacks with remote-controlled model airplanes,” prosecutors added.

Police investigating the terror plot on Tuesday launched a series of raids in Stuttgart and Munich in southern Germany and Saxony in the east. They also carried out one raid in Belgium. No-one was arrested.

The suspects had been under surveillance for more than a year and authorities had recently detected “an increased interest in explosives and model aircraft”, according to an unnamed security source quoted by a German news agency.

Comment Missing the point (Score 1) 179

The French are doing this for the same reason the Americans are persecuting Julian Assange.

Of course the information about this base is out, and of course 500,000 counselor posts were published and can't be retrieved. But, by chasing Assange around the world and into obscure embassies, they make the next person think a little more about what they post on-line. They want the public spectacle of making someone that shares purported 'classified' information eat some dirt or look over their shoulder. Maybe it prevents them from publishing the address of a safe house in Benghazi.


Comment Rights and disclosure (Score 1) 259

Agreed, people don't have a right to parts or information from manufacturers, but I wouldn't mind a disclosure requirement on cameras, computers, TVs, appliances, et cetera, that cost over a certain amount, e.g. $500 or $1000.

Disclosure should cover that company's repair record on similar products and components, average cost of repairs and upgrades during the expected life of the product, shipping cost responsibilities, and whether external services are available or not allowed....

We end up shopping on price and features because the manufacturers get to hide the total cost of ownership. I'm surrounded by a Nikon camera, a Tivo and a kitchen full of 3 y.o. GE appliances that all have exorbitant repair costs for what should be minor repairs or scratches.

Submission + - Radical new Space drive ( 2

Noctis-Kaban writes: Scientists in China have built and tested a radical new space drive. Although the thrust it produces may not be enough to lift your mobile phone, it looks like it could radically change the satellite industry. Satellites are just the start: with superconducting components, this technology could generate the thrust to drive everything from deep space probes to flying cars. And it all started with a British engineer whose invention was ignored and ridiculed in his home country.

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