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Comment deja vu (Score 3, Insightful) 79

Come on. we all know how this is going to go. The "leaders" of these countries will protest and stop the vaccinations, claiming they are an American plot to harm the poor African children. Somehow they will enrich themselves over this but still few if any will be vaccinated. A few volunteer aid workers will be killed. Billions in U.S aid will flow to the countries, but the common people will not get it.

Comment Re:That's funny (Score 4, Interesting) 236

Background fact: All modern NICs (Network Interface Controller) used on Ethernet interfaces have an EEPROM on them. This is what allows the NIC to be mass produced but still each one can have its own unique MAC address.There is left over space is all NIC EEPROMS that I have seen, and manufacturers have used that space to let the NIC owner control configuration options.

I haven't installed any Windows update since I bought an XP laptop with SP1 and Windows kept wanting to install an "important security update". After a month of using XP and a live Linux CD (Knoppix) with no significant problems, I finally accepted the "security update". Windows still worked as well as Windows can be expected to work, but my live Linux CD could no longer connect to the Internet! I eventually tracked the problem to the EEPROM on my notebook's NIC being changed to an unusable startup configuration. Windows knew to not use the configuration in EEPROM and just configured the NIC itself, Linux didn't know that the EEPROM had been screwed with and kept trying to use the configuration stored in EEPROM. I did fin cumbersome manual ways to work past it eventually, but it is an experience that I don't want to have again.

Being that the only people who have ever done harm like this to my computer is the Microsoft corporation, I no longer accept security updates from the only company that I need the protection from.

Comment Old computers presented you with a prompt (Score 1) 467

Old computers typically presented you with a command prompt as soon as you switched them on

Oh you lids.That's not true at all. Old computers, both commercial and hobby, looked at you stupidly and waited for you to toggle in a bootstrap loaded on the switches and lights before they would even consider giving you a prompt.

Eventually some hobby computers did gain a prompt through built in ROM. I remember the SWTP 6800 computer that would give you an * prompt if you got everything right. If you got the baud rate wrong, the "*" became a "fu".

Comment I'm shocked the drug companies are so greedy (Score 4, Insightful) 311

We all know these drugs have an insane markup. The drug companies are getting rick because they set astronomical prices for drugs the might help people, even a little. And they get it because insurance is forced to pay for it, not individuals who could never come up with the money on an individual basis. We have created the problem by mandating insurance and then letting the drug companies pilfer it blind.

This is just another facet of the problem that drug companies use U.S. public funding for the research to help develop most of these drugs, then turn around and charge the American taxpayer more for the drugs than they sell them in other countries, both third world countries like the African nations and first world countries like Canada. And, of course, they spend a lot on expensive lobbying to buy politicians to make sure we in America don't get access to those drugs they sell in Canada.

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