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Comment Do carriers really lose money on subsidies? (Score 1) 329

I doubt that subsidies really hurt the carries bottom line. About 3 years ago when I was last switching carriers, T-Mobile used to have two plans that provided the same minutes/text/data; one plan provided a discount on the phone but were required a two year contract while the other had no subsidy and no contract. In addition the plan with the subsidy cost $20 more a month for smartphones with dataplans. The typical discount on the smart phone was $250-$350. But the extra fees you paid over the life of the contract was $480. So over the life of the contract, you paid an extra $130-$230 to the carrier in exchange for a low start up cost.

(And T-Mobile had a similar thing with regular phones; charged an extra $10 a month / $240 over the life of the contract for a discount of $100-$150).

I highly doubt that any of the other carriers don't also make back the subsidy by higher per-month fees. Of course, I also wonder now that those carriers have gotten people used to a certain monthly fee, will they really lower them after taking away the subsidy.

One of the reasons I liked T-Mobile was that they gave me the option.

Comment does not seem like a big deal (Score 1) 465

I really don't see why this is such a big deal. According to the article, there's .365 accidents per 100,000 miles or just a tad under 1.1 accidents for 300,000 miles. So while the self-driving cars are not having significantly more accidents per mile driven, they haven't logged nearly enough miles yet to clearly demonstrate they that have less accidents per mile driven.


Submission + - was Google's core source code stolen? ( 1

farangbaa writes: "In a Tuesday front page article about Google being hacked, the WSJ quoted James Mulvenon, director of the Center for Intelligence Research and Analysis at Defense Group Inc. as saying that much of the data stolen from Google was its "core source code" and "if you have the source code, you can potentially figure out to do Google hacks that get all kinds of interesting data" and "among the data, would be the information needed to identify security flaws in Google's systems." These quotes appear buried on page A6 of the story that begins on the front page of the WSJ print edition.

But when you go to that same story in the online edition of the WSJ, all those quotes are gone, without explanation. Why is that? Was that information later found to be incorrect? Or is the real story here not about human-rights activists getting their Gmail accounts hacked, but rather that the crown jewels of one of America's premier technology companies were stolen and now are potentially in the hands of a possibly hostile government?"


Submission + - Google censorship re Encylopaedia Drammatica

Phurge writes: Google has agreed to take down links to a website that promotes racist views of indigenous Australians.

Aboriginal man Steve Hodder-Watt recently discovered the US-based site by searching "Aboriginal and Encyclopedia" in the search engine.
His lawyer, George Newhouse, said the site was "one of the most offensive sorts of racial vilification you could possibly find".

"It portrays indigenous Australians in the most unsavoury light possible, and you wouldn't want a child stumbling across it," he told ABC Radio.

Mr Newhouse said Google agreed to take the link down after he filed an official complaint to the Australian Human Rights Commission.
Note: it appears the search terms "Aboriginal and Encyclopedia" were edited so that ED would not show up in search results, rather than the whole site being removed from Google's index

Submission + - Exploit Adapted to Foil Two-Factor Online Banking (

**$tarDu$t** writes: "Despite use of a one-time password, a six-digit code generated by a small electronic device every 30 or 60 seconds, online thieves have adapted to use real-time Trojan horses to issue transactions to a bank while the account holder is online. An earlier visit to another website allowed a malicious program to invade one victim's computer. Later, while the victim issued legitimate online payments, the malware initiated 27 transactions to various bank accounts, siphoning off $447,000 in a matter of minutes."

Comment You should be able to do both (Score 1) 371

Being able to create a single large product with a single programming language is a great skill, but so is being able to do Unix shell scripting.

The system/product I have been working on for the last 10 years is two major pieces that is about 90% of the total code base and lots of small pieces. The two major pieces are both essentially a single program that can be developed in unified environment. But we also have lots of small pieces that are shell scripts that are done in the classical Unix spirit.

Being able to work in both ways is a great strength for the engineers who can do that. Those who can only do one or the other are essentially marginalized as that limits what they are able to do.

Comment not quite right (Score 1) 233

This is not entirely accurate. I just heard from DDJ that an article of mine they accepted earlier this year is being published in February. I asked for one final change and told me that they could not do that because the issue had already gone to press.

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