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Comment Cautionary != Dystopian (Score 1) 33

Still driving my 22 year old Eclipse GSX with no onboard recording devices.

I drive WAY too much for that to be a realistic option for me. My current daily driver is a 2009 and I already have over 160,000 miles on it. If I were to keep it for 22 years at my current annual mileage I'd have over half a million miles on it at that point. It's a good vehicle but I have little confidence it will still be on the road after that much use. Mine doesn't transmit any data about my location either. I think it has an onboard black box but I'm not worried about that.

Very surprised people are going along with the 1984 snooping on everyone thing. It was supposed to be a cautionary tale.

Cautionary but complicated. I carry a smartphone because it adds significant value to my daily life. Yes it could in principle be used in a dystopian fashion but in reality it isn't. Like nuclear power or genetic engineering, the technology is neutral and whether it is a force for good or ill depends on how it is used. There are very positive benefits to tracking location and performance parameters of a vehicle. There also are some drawbacks. It's not all 1984 where everything has taken the worst possible outcome.

Comment Apples and Oranges (Score 4, Insightful) 83

It seems 2 different things to me. The content producers and the content distributors are different groups with different specialties. The top producers and physical studios can rent themselves out to Netflix if the deal is right, for example. Neither is stapled to each other.

The fact that Netflix and Amazon have produced a hit or two doesn't mean they will take over most content production. If they find a nice niche, competitors will copy that niche.

Comment Re:That's a new war (Score 2) 87

The only way to get sufficient competition is to make "the last mile" into a public utility, but allow many content providers in. They don't have run a jillion lines, only hook up to regional routing nodes. By not having to get into the mass wiring business, more content providers can enter the market.

Comment Re:But what about the other messaging services? (Score 1) 90

It's getting confusing with Google now with them spawning, killing or changing a messaging client so often....

Don't worry, they'll let the marketing team rename those apps a half-dozen times in the next year, like they did with Chromecast, so nobody will have any clue about what apps anybody is using and every bit of documentation will be useless.

Then people can just settle on Signal or WhatsApp and be done with it.

Comment Re:simply greedy (Score 1) 240

And there lies the killer. I might pay $20 to see a good, early, first run movie. Not $50. And not with anything else 'added' unless it is completely optional. For $50 I'd expect to get dinner with the movie.

Dinner and a movie costs way more than $50.

You rent the movie, your friends bring over take-out or pot-luck.

$50 doesn't make sense for an individual but for a large group it's pretty easy.

That said, I only go to see digitally-projected 3D films anymore (kids, etc.). Bluray from Redbox is a way better deal than $50.

Comment Re:Metastability (Score 1) 273

I heard the lead on a Science Friday interview - he invited everybody in academia to come to his lab to learn the technique on how to make it, as he wants everybody working on the material. It sounds like they can fairly easily do it again, so I am surprised this article makes no note of that.

Well, "surprised" in that I pretend journalism doesn't exist just to sell ads.

Comment iTunes hasn't been a requirement for years (Score 3, Insightful) 114

Get rid of that awful fucking iTunes software and let me access the phone like any normal USB device.

I honestly cannot remember the last time I opened iTunes on a desktop computer or synced my iPhone with it. That hasn't been a requirement for years.

As for using it as a USB device, I feel you but doubt it is going to happen any time soon.

Comment Taxonomy is always arbitrary (Score 1) 206

Maybe stop changing arbitrary definitions.

Why? If the definitions already were arbitrary then what's wrong with changing them to a different variety of arbitrary? Especially if the new definition makes more sense. We're talking about taxonomy here, not some law of physics.

Frankly the term planet is probably too broad to be super useful by itself. It's kind of like a genus for space objects and we need to define the species. Jupiter and Earth are both considered planets but they aren't even remotely similar to each other aside from being big and round. Ganymede and Titan are both larger than Mercury and all of the dwarf planets. It's not entirely unreasonable to call them Moon Planets even if that seems a little odd to us currently.

People get WAY too attached to the word planet. It's just a word and it doesn't matter what we attach the word to as long as we are clear about what it means. If we want to call large moons a Moon Planet, why is that a problem so long as the definition is clear? We probably should call planets like Jupiter something different than planets like Earth. It's completely fine to have multiple categories of planets and I'm pretty sure we are going to find out that there are far weirder things in the universe than what is in our little solar system.

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