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Comment this is not a gift for employees (Score 5, Insightful) 337

The person doing the "giving" (Alphabet) gets the tax write-off, so the employees got absolutely nothing. Alphabet is in no way required to give their employees gifts, and I think it would have been better if they didn't. This is just an failed attempt at good PR. I'm happy Alphabet is donating to charity - they just shouldn't be pretending they're doing it for their employees.

Comment Re:sad, but inevitable (Score 1) 185

I'm not into tech news these days but has anyone been able to build a smartwatch with as long a battery life as the Pebbles? I always thought epaper was the right tech for smartwatches since because of size limitations they are restricted to a small battery

My Garmin smartwatch lasts over a week if I don't use the GPS.

Comment sad, but inevitable (Score 2) 185

I own an original Pebble from Kickstarter, which I bought before owning a compatible smartphone. Since I'm into running, I ended up replacing my Pebble with a Garmin smartwatch that also provided GPS and a heartrate monitor. (Were I not into running, I'd still be using that original Pebble, since it did everything else I wanted.) I feel like Pebble really started the smart watch revolution, and they did it right -- a simple watch that works with your phone, without attempting to replace it. Unfortunately for them, once the idea was out, any other company could copy it, and that's exactly what happened.

Sadly, the first to market is rarely the one who lasts the longest. Hydrox is gone, but Oreos are here to stay.

Comment Re:You can't use current votes to judge other syst (Score 1) 613

I get my information about the candidates from the news, internet, etc. not by attending political rallies.

and thats the problem. you are taking 3rd hand accounts and ignoring first hand accounts.

Are you suggesting that it would be better for me to drive possibly hundreds of miles to attend a political rally instead of reading the news, or reading the candidates' web sites? And what if new information comes to light between rallies? These "3rd hand accounts", as you call them (why do you call them 3rd, and not 2nd?) are the best methods I can think of to learn about a candidate when that candidate is not within driving distance of my home. But even if the rallies were convenient to me, I get the impression (please let me know if I am wrong about this) that they tend not to have a great deal of substance about specific policy decisions a candidate might make, or other specific information that I could easily look up online.

Comment Re:You can't use current votes to judge other syst (Score 1) 613

I can't think of anything Trump could have done to change my opinion.

Then at no point were you open-minded, or making a decision based on evidence. You had already come to a conclusion. That's dogma, not reason.

No, dogma would be assuming that just because I can't think of something, then it can't possibly exist. I am willing to admit that something might change my mind, but at this point, I am having great difficulty thinking of what that thing might be. (In the specific case of Trump, I say this because there aren't many agreeable things he can say that would negate the disagreeable ones.)

I get my information about the candidates from the news, internet, etc. not by attending political rallies.

Seems like a waste of time. If you had decided which candidate to vote for and nothing they could do would change your mind, then why bother? You could have spent that time indulging a hobby or vice, and your vote would have been the same regardless, right?

How is it a waste of time to learn about the candidates? If I never looked at any information about the candidates, then I'd have had no information upon which to base my vote.

Comment Re: Similar to my phone problems (Score 1) 236

Five years ago, paying a fee for unlimited texting sounds about right. Perhaps 10 years ago, it was more common that you'd be charged a fee (perhaps $0.10 or $0.20) for every text sent or received. For this reason, texting took quite a while to catch on in the US.

As for minutes, most companies no longer have a concept of "long distance" (international is still a thing). So for calls within the country, there is no distinction between "incoming minutes" and "outgoing minutes" -- they're just "minutes". If you're making an international call, I believe you're changed a per-minute surcharge. If you're receiving an international call, you are billed just for the "minutes" used, with no international surcharge.

Simple, right? Of course, none of this is law or anything, so it's really up to the individual companies to decide how to do things.

Comment Re:Isn't it amazing? (Score 1) 613

Isn't it amazing that those contesting the elections because of concerns about illegal votes....

Are the exact same people who are against voter ID law to make it more difficult to cast an illegal vote?

Huh? The people concerned about the voter ID laws tended to be democrats. The people talking about illegal votes tend to be Donald Trump. These are two completely different sets of people. Sure, there are lots of disappointed democrats, but they are not contesting the election, or claiming there was illegal voting taking place.

Comment Re:You can't use current votes to judge other syst (Score 1) 613

Yeah, I'm sure you're correct about this, but it gives me pause. I voted for Hillary, and I can't think of anything Trump could have done to change my opinion. Yet, there are quite a few voters who are influenced by where and how the candidates campaign. I don't understand these voters. I get my information about the candidates from the news, internet, etc. not by attending political rallies.

Comment Re: Similar to my phone problems (Score 1) 236

Sorry, it is exactly like the door example: someone rings me, I have zero control over that, all I can do is choose to answer it or not. Someone rings my door bell, I have zero control over that (walking up to someone's front door is not trespassing, in the UK or the US) and all I can do is choose to answer it or not.

The reason paying for phone calls is so barbaric is that it's so completely ripe for abuse. How's that problem with robo callers working out for you over there in the US?

Texting is even worse (at least before most people got plans with unlimited texts) - in that case, you couldn't chose to not answer. If someone sent you a text, you got charged. You couldn't decide not to receive it.

Comment No (Score 1) 260

The paperless office is not a dream... at least not a dream of mine.

I don't print things every day, but I'm glad to have that ability. Paper is portable, easy to annotate, and just plain useful. I see no reason why I should want to get rid of it.

Comment solution for a problem that doesn't exist (Score 2) 598

Yes, society is becoming more global, and we are having more meetings with people in different time zones. But we also have computers that can very easily figure out the local times. I know that it would be reasonable to schedule a meeting between 9am and 5pm local time. If we all use a universal time, it'll be much harder to figure out who's in the office and who isn't. Likewise, every time I travel, I'll have to figure out what the appropriate time is to wake up, start work, eat lunch, etc.

The number of conveniences created by a universal time would be offset by the much larger number of inconveniences created.

Comment not that big of a deal (Score 1) 174

If things go well for Tesla, there are going to be more and more Tesla cars on the road. For the early adopters, the idea of free charging stations was a great bonus point to offset any complaints about range. Naturally, it costs Tesla money to build and maintain these, and of course, the power isn't free. As long as they charge reasonable prices, I'm fine with this. If I owned an electric car, the vast majority of my charging would be done at home, so even if a recharge at a Tesla station cost as much as a tank of gas, I'd still be paying a lot less to power a Tesla than I would to fuel a gasoline car throughout its life.

Comment Re:So they change the model 3 preorder conditions? (Score 1) 174

I'm not even sure whether this is legal. Or probably it is, because tesla lawyers have made it part of the preorder conditions.

Nobody has preordered a model 3 yet. A preorder would require an existing product, or at least a list of available specs. So far, people have merely reserved a place in line to make a preorder.

Comment Re:Sad (Score 1) 106

This is kind of sad, really. These people lust for the new product but will fake it in order just to fool others into thinking they have it. And they even admit that there's no compelling reason to 'upgrade' to the new shiny. It's a techno-tragicomedy.

I don't know how much "lust" is going on there. A lot of it is about social status. Both for the purpose of showing off in the corporate hierarchy, as well as in social/dating life, it's important to demonstrate that you can afford the latest, and this isn't an easy cycle to break. As an American, I have a hard time relating... the closest comparison I can make would be with cars. For many, your social standing can be measured by the car you drive. (I'm glad this is finally changing among the younger generations. My parents think I'm crazy for owning a reliable, but 10-year-old car, even though I could afford a new one.)

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