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Comment Re:If they'd actually keep up their computer lines (Score 1) 209

I've been waiting on a MBP that's worth replacing my mid-2012 with fully upgraded HD and memory. (my own - not apple's $1k upgrade) Every MBP since then has been flat or downhill in terms of hardware. I think I'm going to go System 76 when I finally can't stand my old MBP anymore and need the hardware upgrades.

Comment Re:1/10th of a mile? (Score 1) 156

AND will encourage social interaction... unlike Pokey-Go

Well, I'm not so sure about that. I'm in a young little city, with lots of families and college kids. It's not uncommon to hear someone of any age under about 40 call out some pokemon name in the common poke-areas of the city, only to have a few other people of varying ages say, "Oooh, cool. Where?" I'm not sure that outside the game that college kids would be making any sort of contact with 10 year olds.
This weekend the wife and I went to people watch at what was rumored to be a ridiculous gathering of players. We were not disappointed. A little park on the outskirts of the city had like 100 people there all milling around playing the game. Some camped out in chairs and on benches, some just wandering up and down the waterfront, people with dogs, kids in strollers.... It was insane. And they were talking to each other. Probably even splits of ages between middle school, high school, college kids, and nerdy 20-40 year old and parents. Somebody from one end of the park would shout that they found some pokemon, and half the people would wander down there, occasionally high-fiving random strangers when they caught it.
It was wild. I've never seen anything like it in my life. I'm guessing small towns are different, but around here, it really is a social game.

Comment Re:Ok, we've added. Now let's subtract. (Score 1) 156

At some point, it stops being fun. It becomes a chore.

I can't count how many games I've just up and dropped because of this reason. I'm pretty immune to the sunk-cost fallacy. Plus, since I never drop more than about $20-$30 into a game until I'm deep into it, it's never enough to care about. Everything from MMOs to single player RPGs, a fair number of community-based online text-based RPGs, etc. As I've gotten older, my patience for drudge-work has dropped off tremendously. My free time is nothing like it used to be, so if I spend more than 10-15 minutes not having fun, I'm done. I don't have the time to "invest" in bullshit on the promise that I'll be entertained later. Too many broken promises over the years for that to work on me any more.
Gotta go. Kids on my lawn again....

Comment Re:Which companies? (Score 2) 78

Slashdot forgets that not all businesses are IT businesses. The beauty of a fax is that it's machine-to-machine. While you can intercept a fax, you need to be in the position of being able to tap a physical phone line. Unlike email, and unlike the dodgy windows computer used to send email, faxes are pretty secure. I've worked in multiple businesses where sensitive information gets faxed. Everything else can go over email, but personnel records, anything with a SSN or other bit of personal information such as medical or educational records, and any sort of invoicing/billing gets faxed.
Is this a perfect system? Nope. Is it the best system? Well, that depends. If you don't have the IT and professional development staff to set up, maintain, and teach administrative assistants how to use a proper encrypted file transfer protocol, and to ensure that they don't compromise their machines, and to monitor their use of it to ensure they're not taking shortcuts, then simply buying a printer that can handle faxes is not the worst idea.

Comment Re:Removable batteries (Score 0) 150

Individual plane owners also couldn't decide to replace the battery with a $4 knock-off from China that was more dangerous.
If the battery was replaceable, there's no guarantee that it would get replaced with a non-dangerous battery. And even if it was replaced with a good one at Samsung's expense, it's entirely possible for some sizable subset of owners to pair THAT one with a dangerous spare. That leads to even greater problems, because then, even if the battery that's lighting on fire is a cheap knock-off, the perception is that the replacements were bad too. There's no easy way to recover from a failure like this.

Comment Re:I didn't notice any outage. (Score 1) 121

That amazes me. Why do you still suffer that? I haven't had a land-line in almost a decade, and I can't fathom ever having one again. Well, I guess I can fathom it if I was motivated to build a call-screening system with ring-only-on-whitelist, but since I can't fathom having that motivation.....

Comment Re:It goes both ways... (Score 3, Interesting) 332

I wonder if this doesn't drive a secondary effect as well. It's not uncommon for a limited number of individuals to be the source of many police interactions. If a lot of those interactions are hostile, on the part of one or the other party, (or both) it creates a toxic relationship. If these interactions have a damper, such as a camera and some better behavior some percentage of the time, I wonder if that doesn't have a calming effect.
Whether or not it's my fault, if I'm getting harassed by the cops all the time, I'm likely going to be an asshole when I see them. But if half the time they are friendly and respectful, just doing their job, it dampens the hate. If half of the time I see that I'm on camera and I bite my tongue and say, "Yeah, sure officer. No problems here." those officers are less fired up and cautious the next time we meet. I could easily see this being a positive behavior feedback loop, where before we had a negative behavior feedback loop.

Comment Re:US education policy... (Score 3, Insightful) 228

Until you have something that absolutely, definitely works, let's just teach kids with teachers who are masters of their subject.

That sounds good, but in practice it's not good. Why? To be a master of your subject, you have to live and breathe your subject. To be a good teacher you need to be a bit of a generalist. You can't be so hyper-focused on one thing that everything else in life gets excluded.
I've got an education degree and some teaching experience, and I've also spent a fair bit of time working in and around grad-school STEM programs. The experts in those programs are the shittest teachers, for the most part. Why? They never learned about how kids learn, because they were busy becoming experts. They never learned the basics of assessing learning because they were becoming experts. They never learned motivational strategies because they were hyper-motivated on an exclusive topic, and it never occurred to them that some students need some motivation the way they would for any other topic.
What we need are not masters of their subjects, but communicators and collaborators who can give kids access to people who are masters of their subjects. I once filled that role, connecting NASA scientists to middle school science classrooms. The NASA scientists weren't teachers and didn't know the first thing about it, and the middle school science teachers weren't scientists and engineers. But when we set up the communication and collaboration between the kids and the experts, amazing stuff happened.
That's one thing we need. The other is equitable funding. I think that it's Germany that does the opposite of what the US does. They still have standardized tests, but the results are secret. The lowest performing schools get more money, and the highest performing schools get less. That makes all of the schools roughly the same, and parents don't know which ones are better, so the rich parents can't move their kids out, leaving behind the poor (minority) kids. The US does the opposite - we openly publish our assessment scores, and we threaten to withhold funds from poorly performing schools. Since we also have wacky local funding, parents create these "ghetto schools", as rich parents move their kids to the best performing schools, and work to ensure that they don't need to pay for the schools they left behind. Great for their kids, but terrible for all the other kids. But who cares when you can live in a gated community with a guard to keep the rabble out, right?

Comment Re:A picture is worth a thousand words (Score 2) 84

Why didn't you just post a video? But more seriously:

I would've preferred it to have happened in your browser which could automatically poll certain bookmarked sites every x hours, and put any of those pages updated since your last visit into a special folder (would be really handy for the list of web comics I follow).

Congratulations, you just described an RSS reader, and the way I've been using it for two decades now. INOReader, for one, can even poll some social media sites. Did you seriously never learn about RSS? I mean, it's decades old and designed to do exactly what you're describing.

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