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Comment Re:Business as usual (Score 1) 156

Political officials setting themselves up to regulate things they have zero background knowledge in? Sounds like business as usual to me.

If this is "business as usual", then they shouldn't expect the end result to be any different than before.

Security only works if you get past the political bullshit step of talking about it.

Comment Re:Markets Work, Bitches (Score 1) 95

People on various sides of various issues try not to believe it, would like not to believe it, but Markets Work. You can't stop them just by making rules against them, not without insanely powerful enforcement mechanisms..., and usually not even then.

Well, that's certainly one creative way to describe the demand driven by physical and psychological addiction.

Except that this has nothing to do with the argument. Markets work because people demand goods, period. Their motivation for the desire is completely irrelevant. It is a fundamental principle of economics that we always want as much of a good as we can consume. Why we want it doesn't matter.

Bullshit. If that last statement were even remotely true, cigarette companies wouldn't have spent millions in R&D over the last half century to ensure their product is designed to maximize addiction. They sure as hell haven't spent millions to ensure cigarette smoke tastes like chocolate.

You might argue that these types of drugs, driven by addiction are not actually a good, but are in fact a bad. The behavior of these markets would demonstrate otherwise.

Uh, might argue? There's little arguing the end result of using crystal meth. Or crack cocaine. Or even a dependency to legal opiates. ALL tend to have a negative effect on the human body, and ALL are highly addictive. I don't have to argue they are a bad. Common sense does that.

As far as the "behavior" of the markets, well it tends to become rather impossible to define that behavior when addiction is what fuels most of it. If these illegal drugs and the markets they create were such a benefit to society, then they wouldn't be illegal in the first damn place.

Comment Re:Markets Work, Bitches (Score 1, Insightful) 95

People on various sides of various issues try not to believe it, would like not to believe it, but Markets Work. You can't stop them just by making rules against them, not without insanely powerful enforcement mechanisms..., and usually not even then.

Well, that's certainly one creative way to describe the demand driven by physical and psychological addiction.

Comment Re:It's not as simple as "just switch over" (Score 1) 166

As someone who is on the tail end of a 700 computer migration from WinXP to Win7, I feel their pain. A single critical program that won't run on Win7 can be a showstopper. Not to mention special hardware for which no Win7 drivers are available - all of a sudden that $120 upgrade cost for a Win7 license became $25,120 when you include the cost of a new laser engraver.

Since I'm going to assume that not every computer in your organization has a laser engraver attached to it, I'm thinking that a moderately-built Win7 machine running a virtual XP environment under VMWare Workstation would likely be far less than $25,000.

Then you lock down that virtual XP environment where it does not talk to anything other than the laser engraver. Perhaps you have not removed the issue altogether, but you've certainly taken considerable steps to insulate risk by keeping the unsupported OS restricted from access.

Comment Re:Seems like a less than ideal outcome (Score 3, Informative) 44

So, the Scotland Police do something bad, and the penalty is paid by the Scottish taxpayers rather than the police officers who did the bad thing?

Not much deterrent value in "if you get caught, someone else will pay your fine"....

Care to direct me to the country in the world that operates any differently in this type of scenario?

This IS the inherent problem with trying to nail government officials to the wall when they fuck up; the taxpayer ends up being the one punished, which tends to raise the question as to whether or not you should be swinging a hammer in the first place, even when it's blatant.

Worst catch-22 ever.

Comment Re:Waterproof is condition dependent (Score 1) 159

"Proof" is an absolute. It's either waterproof or its not.

Not true at all. A watch can be waterproof at 1m depth and not waterproof at 20m depth. That is true for any device, whether it be a submarine, a wristwatch or anything else. You can accurately describe something as waterproof as long as you also provide the conditions under which it is waterproof. Water resistant means that it will not immediately fail under a particular set of conditions but that prolonged exposure will probably result in damage or failure eventually. Water proof means it can withstand those condition indefinitely without ill effect. See the difference?

"Better waterproofing" just means it wasn't waterproof before.

Incorrect. It means it is waterproof in conditions where it wasn't previously.

The correct answer here is E) None of the above, because no model of Apple watch is actually waterproof. They are merely water resistant. And unless Apple is going to reference a waterproof standard, at the end of the day it still means they are stupid enough to sell a "sport" model that can barely withstand being caught in a heavy rain.

Water proof means it can withstand those condition indefinitely without ill effect.

By your own words, I hope you now understand the parents point when defining "proof" as an absolute. Yes, there are varying standards (depths) of being waterproof, but it certainly doesn't mean that at each certified level the hardware operates differently. It does not, hence absolute.

Comment Re:Smart watches are dumb (Score 2) 159

Unreliable heart rate detection, GPS and fitness tracking, voice recording on command, what else? In the future a smart watch will be able to project directions on the ground to somewhere or someone you're trying to find; to remind you in the grocery store that you wanted to pick up some milk; to answer arbitrary questions from the internet; to alert emergency services when you've suffered a stroke or car collision; an many other things. But for now the functionality is so low as to put them in the category of "ornament".

Ironically, by the time a smartwatch finally meets your expectations, I will be able to label the wearer an "ornament". At that point, you will have divested the human of any need for critical thinking whatsoever.

Gee, I can't wait to see how "smart" tech will forge The Dumb Generation.

Comment Re:Bullshit, never going to happen (Score 1) 213

One day, your thermostat will get hacked by some cybercriminal

No, it won't: I'm not falling for the 'Internet of Things' troll/meme. You won't be hacking my thermostat, lightbulbs, dishwasher, microwave oven, clothes washer, clothes dryer, television, or any other household appliance because there's not a single damned good reason why these NEED to be connected to the Internet.

Vendor Marketeers: "There's not a single good reason our products should be offline!"

Good luck fighting it.

Comment Re:Yes, because it would be (Score 2) 213

COMPLETELY impossible to unscrew the smart thermostat from the wall, unwire it, and (temporarily) install a traditional non-networked thermostat so you could operate your heat (or AC) while you contact the vendor or manufacturer of the smart thermostat for help.

Quite often there is an inverse correlation between the "smart" device and the owner, and you ARE talking about a human that needs an app to operate their thermostat so, good luck with that theory.

Comment Mars and the Furious (Score 1) 35

"...but it's harder than it seems. The virtual rover's wheels crack and break if they slam hard against rocks or heels, and when they do, it's game over. NASA derived these mechanics from Curiosity's actual mission and experiences on Mars."

Well that's certainly one way to crowdsource the next Dominic Toretto to work for NASA.

How fast can you go from zero to Enders Game...

Comment Hacker. The new terrorist. (Score 1) 33

"..if you work for Russia and hack into the DNC -- you are not necessarily a hacker."

You're right. Not a hacker. In this case you would probably be considered a terrorist.

Since DHS is considered classifying elections as critical infrastructure, there's probably more truth here than we care to believe.

Comment Re:And this is the reason you WANT this machine. (Score 1) 472

The cult of Mac is just absurd.

Ah yes, I should just agree to be assimilated with the Borg 10 Anniversary Edition instead.

Needless to say, now is not the ideal time to start trying to defend or promote Micro$haft solutions.

Hardware durability matters to me as well. I'm still running my 2008 Macbook (one graphics repair needed in 8 years, and was done for free out of warranty by Apple), and my 1984 Apple IIc is still operational as well (recently fired it up in memory of Terrapin Logo. RIP, Mr. Papert.)

Comment Re:Who is more likely to be 'fooled'? (Score 1) 177

Split-second decisions are exactly what is often needed to save lives, as humans have demonstrated for decades now.

Demonstrated the ability to kill tens of thousands of people every year because of the human inability to consistently make split second decisions? I think is what you mean. We have a well known and well studied problem that is almost completely unsolvable without autonomous driving. Finding issues is fine, but there are a hundred people dying every day who's families can't wait for widespread adoption of autonomous driving.

This technology will save lives and we need it yesterday.

Yes, I'm well aware of the problem we're trying to solve here, but an obituary that reads "killed by autonomous bug #285A" isn't going to make any family member feel better vs one that reads "killed by a drunk driver". In fact, it's likely going to make them even more angry because their loved one that was sober, alert, and attentive behind the wheel was killed by their own damn car through no fault of their own.

Yes, the thousands of people dying every year is something that we do need to address yesterday. Are we there yet with autonomous tech? Not even close.

And for all the humans who might not make that split-second decision fast enough, I'm certain there are plenty of examples of humans who did, and saved lives.

Comment Re:In the U.S., why isn't this obsolete by now? (Score 1) 129

You're aware that the census is legally mandated in the Constitution, right?

Of all the unjustified responses that will compel me to slap someone upside the head repeatedly, "Because we've always done it this way" comes out on top every time.

The most powerful single-word question in the known universe is Why, which my example exemplifies.

There's a world of difference between "we've always done it this way" and "is legally mandated in the Constitution".

That "world" you speak of can now answer the same damn question; Why.

That question applies across your entire world is because we have these things called Constitutional Amendments, which came about because someone did ask that all-powerful question repeatedly until a logical answer or solution was presented instead of excuses or references to ancient texts. The world is ever-changing, which is the reason Constitutions have been amended as well.

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