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Comment Re: The same PR talk crap that everyone else does. (Score 1) 158

No, it doesn't need to be ended, and no, it isn't wrong at all.

If you think it's wrong, then stop using products which do this. As long as you continue to use products which do these things you detest, then you are a hypocrite.

MS is free to force spyware on its customers. Its customers are free to find another vendor. If they refuse to do that, then there is absolutely nothing wrong with MS's actions.

Comment Re:Sounds like a pretext to me... (Score 1) 158

I don't see the problem here at all. Gamers should be *happy* to have Windows force an update during one of their games.

I've been hearing for *years* from "gamers" how Windows is the One True Platform for games, and everyone needs to use Windows just because of games. So I'm quite happy to see them getting their games disrupted by Windows Update. Any of them who complain about this are hypocrites, given their steadfast support and advocacy for Microsoft and Windows.

Comment Re:MS is completely wrong (Score 1) 158

If Windows update doesn't work without telemetry, that is a demonstration of MS incompetence and a very bad design decision.

How is that a bad design decision or incompetence? I think it's quite the opposite. Why should Windows Update work without telemetry? MS gets more profit by having telemetry enabled on all systems, and it doesn't benefit them at all to allow users to disable it. After all, what are disgruntled users going to do? Stop using Windows? Fat chance. MS might as well force them to keep telemetry on, since they're going to use Windows either way.

Yes, Linux doesn't have these issues, but the number of Windows users willing to switch to Linux over telemetry is nearly zero. To paraphrase Winston Churchill, the best argument against computer user competence is a 5-minute conversation with the average user. It doesn't matter how much better or easier Linux is than Windows; people simply will not switch.

Comment Re:Unfortunate way to sell Linux on the desktop (Score 1) 121

Who wants to use a developer machine that connects to 100+ servers owned by another company without any control by the local administrator?

Apparently, most users and developers, judging by how many use Windows and ardently defend it, including on this very site. Most people just don't care about those freedoms, or privacy.

Comment Re:Unfortunate way to sell Linux on the desktop (Score 1) 121

end-user ease of use easily on a par with Windows

Actually, I have to disagree vigorously with this one. Windows is much more of a pain in the ass than Linux to use, for many reasons. The biggest one that comes to mind is updates. On Linux Mint, they're ridiculously easy: just click on the little shield icon when it's red, then click "install updates" on that window. Minimize and go back to your work. I believe it's also possible to make it fully automatic though I haven't tried that. On Windows, updates will force themselves on you at terribly inconvenient times, and prevent you from using your computer, and will force a reboot, so you lose all your open windows.

Comment Re: No, ABMers. No. For the last time. NO. (Score 1) 158

With Trump, it's anyone's guess, because he's so unpredictable.

With Hillary, a war with Russia was a sure thing. Hillary was dead-set on establishing a no-fly zone over Syria. That would have inevitably led to war with Russia.

With one candidate offering a 100% chance of war, and the other candidate offering a less-than-100% chance of war with Russia, the latter is obviously the better choice.

It wouldn't have to have been this way if the stupid Democrats and the media didn't torpedo Bernie in the primary. They have only themselves to blame.

Comment Re:Fighting nebulous "hate speech" will kill them (Score 1) 303

What are you talking about? Right now, it appears that close to half the nation at least sympathizes with the alt-right: they just elected the President. I don't think it's completely unreasonable to assume that the Americans on Facebook roughly represent America's population overall, in fact I think the alt-right is probably over-represented on FB because younger people (under 30, and esp. under 20) use the platform a lot less than older people.

Also, in my own personal experience with some, um, family members, alt-right groups are very strong and numerous on Facebook from what I've seen. Personally, I think Facebook will be shooting itself in the foot if they kick out all the alt-right groups. They have a platform that caters mostly to old people (Gen-X and up), and a huge portion of that population is right-wing, and has now moved into alt-right territory (AFAICT, the traditional right-wing is now mostly gone, and conservative people have shifted their views to align with alt-right sources like infowars). So while I can understand why Zuck isn't real happy with his customer base, but those are the people keeping Facebook alive and bringing in advertising dollars.

Comment Re:Why not just use Splenda? (Score 1) 325

How about artificial sweeteners (stevia isn't artificial to my knowledge, it comes from some plant in South America I think)? Saccharin, aspartame, sucralose?

I think I might have that gene too; cilantro seems to taste a little soapy, and I really have stevia. I like broccoli though, but only steamed like in Chinese food.

Comment Re:Define "fit for business" (Score 1) 119

Ok, that makes sense, but I'm not proposing that MS push these shenanigans any time too soon. What if they wait until everyone's finally moved to Win10 Enterprise, perhaps in 3-5 years, and *then* they start tightening the screws on their corporate customers, mis-feature by mis-feature? Remember the old tale about the frog in boiling water.

Comment Re:or how about less sugar anyways? (Score 1) 325

I don't see how that would prevent what Germany does. If a State wanted to withhold tithes from people's paychecks in that State, the 1A doesn't prevent it, as long as the government doesn't favor any one religion. As long as any religion could apply for this service, it should be legal. The problem is that it'd probably be an administrative nightmare. As I understand it, over in Germany, most Christians still fall into a handful of denominations, which are all probably organized at the national level (i.e., the Catholics have organizations at the diocesan levels, and probably one country-wide level above those, which reports to the Vatican; the Lutherans have one organization, the Anglicans too, etc.). Over here in the US, things aren't that simple. While the Catholics are of course well-organized, the other mainstream Protestant denomations are less so: there's mainstream groups for the Epsicopals, Lutherans, etc., but all these also have renegade divisions where some chuches at some point rebelled against the heirarchy and split off into their own sect. The Lutherans, for instance, have the Wisconin and Missouri Synods which are ultra-conservative, unlike the regular sect. The Presbyterians have PC-USA which most churches are part of, but a bunch are either independent or part of some other ultra-conservative group (lately in response to the Presbyterians' acceptance of homosexuals and of homosexual preachers even). There's a zillion different Baptist groups out there dating from the 1800s. And these days half the Protestants are Evangelicals, and frequently part of some Prosperity Gospel megachurch, which is totally independent. All in all, there's probably tens if not hundreds of thousands of "organizations" around the nation, just for Christianity, though most of these are independent churches both large and small (some of them in peoples' basements even). So keeping track of all these entities and giving them access to the government-tithe-withholding system would end up costing an absolute fortune. In Germany, they probably don't have this problem because 1) I'm pretty sure they don't have remotely as many independent churches and 2) they don't have our 1A, so they can probably safely ignore smaller religious organizations and just do this for large, established ones.

Honestly, I'm not sure why Germany still does this at all. Much of their population isn't religious any more, and if people want to give money to a church, they can do it themselves without the government's help. It's probably some silly holdover from previous generations when churches were a stronger part of civic life, but for an advanced and secular western nation, it's really an embarrassment IMO.

Comment Re:Thoughtcrime (Score 1) 411

That is not the same thing as consuming child sex abuse material, which is based on harm to other people.

No, it's not.

Cartoons and stick figures do not cause harm to actual children, yet these are just as illegal as full-fledged photographic CP in many jurisdictions. That's the problem with these stupid laws. Someone who likes to look at kiddie anime has issues, I'll agree, but they don't need to be locked up, as they haven't harmed any children or anyone at all. If you take that route, then we need to start locking people up for all kinds of moral "crimes" such as adultery, fornication, looking at (adult) porn, criticizing the Dear Leader, etc. under the theory that they're somehow harming society.

And alcoholics and drug addicts, it can be argued, are hurting their families and society too, probably more than someone looking at some pics at home. Drug/alcohol addiction causes a real loss of productivity at work, impaired driving-related accidents, etc.

Just like alcohol and drugs, it's basically impossible to eliminate the demand for CP; there's simply something miswired in the heads of people who like that. The answer is therapy, not criminal prohibition of everything that resembles it and locking them up. (Note that I'm *not* arguing for legalization of actual CP that involves real humans.)

And to extend this to the future: we can already create nearly photo-realistic movies entirely digitally, with no humans at all. There was a Final Fantasy movie over 10 years ago that was pretty impressive for the time, and it's only gotten better since then. Now amateurs are making very impressive short videos on their home computers. Before too long, it won't be hard to make movie scenes that look entirely real, depicting humans who don't actually exist, and someone's going to use that technology to make CP. Should that be illegal, when it can be *proven* that no humans were involved in the production? Something to think about. Because if that's illegal, under the theory that people interested in this stuff will inevitably want the "real thing" at some point, then basically you've invented a "thought crime" and created a witch hunt.

Comment Re:Nestle didn't discover anything. (Score 1) 325

Sea salt vs. table salt isn't just a difference in crystal size (sea salt can be milled down to a finer size easily). Sea salt has a different chemical makeup than table salt: that's why it tastes so different. Table salt is almost pure sodium chloride, plus some anti-caking agents and iodine, and has all the impurities refined out. Sea salt has much higher concentrations of trace minerals, namely calcium, magnesium, potassium, and iron. These things are still small in concentration in sea salt (hence the term "trace amounts"), but it's enough to make the salt taste noticeably different.

Comment Re:A real "breakthrough" (Score 1) 325

There's some inaccuracies in your post.

First, the higher-priced chocolate bars really aren't that hard to find. You really should be able to find the higher-priced US-made chocolate bars at any Walmart or Target, even in "the heartland". Target carries Lindt, for instance. It's not going to be in the checkout aisle, though.

Another good place to get chocolate (both US and especially European) is "Cost Plus World Market". These stores are pretty common in suburban areas, and have a lot of specialty foreign foods plus some fancy American-made stuff that's hard to find in supermarkets.

Finally, Whole Foods' alternate name is "Whole Paycheck".

And how is white chocolate "criminal fraud"? If you get really high-quality white chocolate, it's fantastic.

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