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Comment Re:Yet another great argument... (Score 1) 402

A car, TV, and cell phone are prerequsites if you don't WANT to be poor in America.[snip] The $800 TV's (bought on credit, not with cash) should most definitely be in our living rooms

The consumer culture that is thriving in the USA, as made example in your comment, are part of the reason the middle class in the USA have to work harder each year as they gradually sink in the economic order. They allow themselves to be fooled by advertising and popular culture into buying things that are not necessary. You _have_ to buy the car because you _have_ to have your McMansion in the suburbs. You _have_ to have the TV because you _have_ to watch your soaps(and advertising). You _have_ to have a credit card because you _can't_ wait to buy that shiny new whosiewhatsit.

I'll agree that a cell phone is a modern convenience that makes a big difference, but the car and tv, the big house in the 'burbs, and the other trappings of popular middle-class life in the USA are what you need to make yourself poor. America's middle class is being consumed by it's consumerism, and it is so distracted that it doesn't seem able to notice.

Comment Not only 'a store of value' (Score 1) 398

Any currency has a wide range of roles, including storage of value. Since bitcoin is not a fiat currency, I might argue that the best uses for it are not necessarily in value storage, but in transactional freedom across politically defined boundaries. That's not to say that it can't hold value, since there are mechanisms in place with the objective to reduce inflation. In fact, it might do the opposite and deflate which could encourage hoarding. Since it is not available in the form of organizationally controlled physical objects and requires technological transaction support, it seems likely to be used less for small value impulse transactions than for considered, purposeful exchange. That's my guess, anyhow.

Comment Have a ball at work! (Score 1) 635

As many others have mentioned here already, ride your bike to work if you can... Many of us here in Amsterdam ride to work daily. There aren't any hills, but the wind can increase the effort significantly. Maybe you think you live too far away from your work, but if you are like most people, the distance is probably less than 30km (~19mi) and even more likely to be much closer than that. Make sure you dress for the ride and the weather so you'll be comfortable. You'll be a lot more likely to keep it up for the future. Watch out for cars on the way to work and get some really visible lights for the front and back. Once you're at work maybe your options are limited by space, noise, or expense or all three. That's the case for me. I use an exercise ball as a chair. It sounds odd and unproductive, but it keeps my core engaged all day long. I purchased the largest one I could find(60cm) and over-inflate it until it is pretty firm. At first my back 'hurt' since the muscles were tired, so I spent the first few weeks only part-time on the ball. I used to have back pain from slouching in a chair but I've been sitting on the ball for 3 years now and have been completely without back pain for the last 2,5 years.

Comment Re:No Good (Score 1) 553

For me, that would feel parasitic. I gave to the EFF anyhow, and directly instead of through the HIB. I don't want DRM on my computer, and wouldn't install these games even if they would work on my system (Linux only).

Maybe the best way to help the folks at HumbleBundle to find their way again is a nice email, instead of just sticking it to them.
To whom it may concern:

Thank you so much for the wonderful bundles that you have released over the years! I've been introduced to some great developers and found some nifty toys that I would not likely have found on my own. I think that you've done GREAT THINGS for the indie game developers out there and to the EFF, a charity I can really get behind! You've helped bring relevance and momentum to a section of the industry that has really deserved it, and emboldened new developers to pursue projects and create awesome things never seen before.

In the past I've purchased several versions of the humble bundle and promoted it to others. I haven't played many of the games past the first few minutes, but I've really felt like the HIB was an awesome new development in the promotion of games the major industry generally lacks.

With the release of the latest THQ bundle, I feel like the brand that you've built has been compromised in a significant way, and it seems that you've sold out to a part of the industry that is failing due to the choices it has made. Those common industry choices are WHY I do not buy games from THQ and similar:
THQ games are NOT developed to work on Linux or even Mac.
THQ games include DRM which is a disgusting offense to the customer.

Additionally, this bundle is undesirable and departs from my expectations of the Humble Bundle brand due to the fact that THQ is not an indie developer, and significantly, is only available through Steam instead of a direct download.

I believe that the Humble Bundle brand can be saved if you don't publish bundles of this type in the future. However, if you choose to follow the major games industry down this road, you will be going that way without those many of us who believe that the games industry can be turned around. THQ and it's ilk choose to reward their paying customers with mistrust and DRM. They choose to falsely belief that the Windows platform is the only viable one. They choose irrelevance and failure, and they deserve to get it. There may be good people working at this company, but they need to have ethical standards in whom they choose to work with. When companies like THQ fail, their employees are thereby freed to pursue work in industries where they can make a positive mark on the world.

As soon as you return to what we used to believe were your core principles, we will support you again. Please never release a bundle of this type again.

Thanks for the memories, and I wish you good luck in finding your way back to the good path.

Comment Re:Skype (Score 1) 212

Exactly. It's just not a problem any longer. I use Skype on 2 systems, Ubuntu 10.04 and Mint 12 all day long for business. I use the version from Skype's download page. Very rarely, if I have flashplayer running (e.g. Pandora in firefox) Skype will consume all available memory on the system before being killed off automatically. Otherwise, I have zero problems with it, including voice quality, video, shared desktop, files, etc. With ongoing excellent support and development of LibreOffice and Thunderbird, I'll never need to go back to window$ for my work environment. If I am asked to use some pre-compiled MS binary, Wine is better than ever and in increasingly rare occasions I use an XP VM. It's amusing that at our business it's the MS users that do the cursing at their machines, while the Linux users have it easy.

Comment Re:twofer (Score 1) 312

The way I see it, Political Corruption functions as either an enabler or a catalyst to bad behaviour in Military, Corporate, and Banking related issues. Releasing leaks on all of those topics would do far greater good than harm. I would argue further, that in cases where harm is attributed to the leak, the bad actors to whom the leak refers remain at fault for having created the potential for harm by their ill intent and bad actions.

Submission + - Hacker attacks disable cars ( 1

katarn writes: In what probably isn't a great shock to us, main stream media realizes modern automobiles can be hacked in many ways. More of interest though, they were even able to disable the brakes (assumedly this was on a car with anti-lock breaks). Refreshingly, the article isn't fear mongering, and states "Cars benefit from the fact that they are (hopefully) not connected to the internet (yet) and currently are not able to be remotely accessed". One can only hope (perhaps in vain) that as cars become more connected they would be designed so that the electronics could not override the brakes. Of course once you have physical there are many ways an auto can be damaged or disabled even without being an electronics cracker. In my mind this type of attack could be much subtler and harder to detect; instead of physically cutting a brake line, the brakes could be programmed to only fail when needed the most, such as when anti-lock would normally be activated.
detect; instead of physically cutting a brake line, the brakes could be programmed to only fail when needed the most, such as when anti-lock would normally be activated.

Comment Re:How isn't this a form of terrorism? (Score 2, Interesting) 235

I'm glad you pointed out the definition of 'terrorism'. Those particular words were well thought out, I believe.

How much real fear in instilled in you, the Australian people, the Australian government, or the target site's admins as a result of this event? Any fear at all? Is this fear a reasonable response to this event? It's just computer systems and public websites, after all. Do you equate 'inconvenience' with 'danger'?

We're being conditioned to experience fear when we're told, on demand. We're told that an attack against a server is an attack on the people and therefore the expected response is fear, nee 'Terror'. As an individual, I ask you if you choose what you are afraid of? Do you hold in yourself the determination behind your actions, your beliefs, and your responses to external events? Do events out of your control cause you to fear them and their instigators because you believe that you are truly in danger, or because you have been conditioned to respond as if it were so by people who have a specific interest and benefit by your fearful response?

If you want to call these events 'Acts of Terrorism', if you want to be afraid, please do so on your own terms and not those handed to you along with the blindfold and handcuffs. You are a powerful individual, my friend, and you are capable of deciding for yourself what is right if you will only objectively view the events and effects that you experience. Keep that power to yourself, instead of simply handing it off to those who would manipulate you for their gain.


Living In Tokyo's Capsule Hotels 269

afabbro writes "Capsule Hotel Shinjuku 510 once offered a night’s refuge to salarymen who had missed the last train home. Now with Japan enduring its worst recession since World War II, it is becoming an affordable option for people with nowhere else to go. The Hotel 510’s capsules are only 6 1/2 feet long by 5 feet wide. Guests must keep possessions, like shirts and shaving cream, in lockers outside of the capsules. Atsushi Nakanishi, jobless since Christmas says, 'It’s just a place to crawl into and sleep. You get used to it.'”

Comment Re:Well I guess its bad... (Score 1) 572

All of which she is capable?

That's just the problem. To you those women on stage are already dead. They've made money for displaying themselves and like a bitter used whore, are just a shell person filled only with the pain of their abuse?

What if they look at the wage slaves whose laps they sit in with the same pity we look at a fast-food worker, or MCSE? They get to dance for a bit and go home. The non-sex workers have to stay for hours and pretend to care about the topic.

The geeks whose careers are settling around them with the finality of cement versus the dancers whose lives are just beginning.

You'd have a point if these women were vat-grown clones who'd be terminated if they didn't perform. The truth though is that they're free to choose and the ones who would be crushed by being there aren't the ones rushing to fill the job.

Comment Re:Things don't work the way you think (Score 1) 212

What I have is mostly legal theory. Appropriation of an unpublished manuscript would be prosecuted under the Uniform Trade Secrets Act in most states. You can look that up. Publication and lawful sale provide you an implicit license to no longer consider that material as a secret. If you divulge the ending of Harry Potter 8 before it's published, expect to be sued, even though you bought the book and a copyright applies to it, and you never signed an NDA.

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