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Comment Inspection of property? (Score 1) 67

I wonder if potential bidders will be allowed to inspect these coins for validity? Would suck to buy $1.6m of Bitcoin to find out they are worthless/already spent.
This would be like buying a box of confiscated iTunes gift cards; which of them have been used or had the PINs copied off before being put in the box?

Comment Re:"Lockdown" (Score 1) 173

Let's gauge my level of commitment to "burning the midnight oil" in the two scenarios:

  • The lives of my coworkers are in danger and we have 4 days to get them home
  • The boss is feeling threatened because a competitor has had the audacity to develop an ad- and cat video-delivery platform that might compete with our own.

Comment What a stupid idea (Score 1) 381

This is not an interesting idea at all. I hate to say it, but this level of stupidity is beneath Dr. Hawking. Even after solving all the technological problems standing in the way, in some accelerated miracle fashion, we will have accomplished what? Sending a single piece of space junk across the galaxy with no way to receive any sort of data back from this "probe?"

I saw a brief snippet about this on the local news last night, complete with animations of the solar sail and some guy holding a 4" x 4" PCB up to the camera, like it was some sort of launch-ready kit.

My hat's off to the con men who convinced private investors to fund their cushy research project career.

Comment Re: Investors are parasites (Score 1) 138

Yes, employing people should not be a sin. To Wall Street investors, however, it is a huge unforgivable one. Unless of course we're taking about H1-Bs from India. Then it's ok.

Bottom line: don't work for a publicly traded company if you can at all arrange not to. Your income is a lot safer that way.

That said, I'm surprised that a useless social networking company that caters to narcissists employs anyone at all, but that's kind of a special case. Then again, considering everyone under 40 has a portfolio consisting entirely of Facebook, Twitter, GoPro, and maybe Apple such a collapse repeated a few times could cause the ruination of a whole generation...

Employing people is not a sin, but being employed is also not a God-given right.
Employees need to create value for companies. If an employee costs the company $100k/year, and the company only benefits $80k from that worker, it would be charity to continue to keep the employee on the payroll. That's all well and good, until there's no more in the piggy bank.

Comment Re:USB 3.0? (Score 1) 80

No thanks, I prefer to have less latency. Also, no word on resolution, but unless it uses HDMI 2.0 or DisplayPort, it's not going to be HiDPI. Who would want a non-HiDPI, 30Hz screen these days?

Maybe I'm up in the night about this, but USB seems to be the least-common denominator on a laptop. If this devices requires HDMI or DP, then a portion of the target audience would be cut right out.

Comment Re:Bankrupty doesn't discharge them (Score 1) 1032

Unlike most loans which have assets (home, car, etc) that can be confiscated a student loan doesn't result in a physical resource but in knowledge held in the students mind which cannot be taken.

Bullshit. You keep posting this tired incorrect argument all over this thread. Most debt discharged in bankruptcy is unsecured. (In fact, if people didn't have unsecured debt, they wouldn't even qualify for bankruptcy.)

How exactly do credit card companies confiscate "assets" from vacations taken and meals eaten out? How exactly do drs and hospitals confiscate medical care previously provided? (Which is one the biggest causes of bankruptcy in this country.) Well of course they can't.

You're right about the credit cards, but the inability to discharge a federally-guaranteed student loan is a large part of why the loans are issued at 4-8% instead of the 17-30% that you see on credit cards.

Comment Re:Call me old-fashioned .. but you took out the l (Score 1) 1032

It's easy to say "grow up" when the biggest loan you had to take out was for a motorcycle. An education in the US can cost 10s-100s of thousands of dollars not including living expenses. Couple this with low earnings coming out of college and interest rates that capitalize (interest is added to principle) which occurs during forbearance, deferment, or even while you're still in school. For the vast majority of people, repayment is not so simple when the average wage for a US employee is $45,327 as of 2012 according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers. This doesn't take into account the costs of living, healthcare, health insurance, transportation, or god-forbid entertainment.

Yes, tuition in the U.S. can cost 100s of thousands of dollars, but it need not.
If you're borrowing "100s of thousands of dollars" to earn a degree to qualify you for a job earning $45,327, you're doing it wrong.

There are two things people keep teaching their children about college (by their words or actions) that are flat-out wrong:
    1. Always go to whichever college you want, no matter the cost. Any degree is guaranteed to be worth any price paid.
    2. In college, always pursue your dreams. It doesn't matter what you can get paid for it, because then you'll be a well-rounded individual and society will value you.

We are seriously short-changing our children by not teaching basic financial skills like loan repayment, ROI, and critical thinking about this while they are in high school. Signing up an 18 year old for $100k worth of student loans without requiring some sort of competency exam seems borderline criminal, to me.

Comment Re:One word summary. (Score 1) 1032

So is a Master of Philosophy now only available to the wealthy? SO what if people go to school and study art history or whatever 'useless' degree they want? Is education so frowned upon that it is considered a waste of time unless you are already wealthy and have nothing better to do than study art?

Yes, I'll say it: if you are not wealthy and have to worry about making a living in this world, it is a waste of your time and money to study art as your profession.

We really need to reset our public priorities in regards to education. I don't have a problem with the fact that you might have to work at Starbucks after getting an art history degree. But there is absolutely nothing wrong with having an educated populace, even amongst the working class. Would it be so bad to be able to have that person handing you your coffee to actually be well-educated? Or would that threaten your worldview that they are greedy and useless?

I have no problem with people studying whatever they want, and society does benefit from having an educated populace. That's why we have K-12 programs in this country. But the idea that "a degree" is of such value to society that taxpayers should be on the hook to allow anyone to study anything they want, for as long as it takes, is where I have to disagree.

Comment Re:The author went to college in the 80's (Score 1) 1032

You know it was a lot cheaper in the '80s, right?

Salaries were lower too. If he had gotten a more lucrative degree or went to a less expensive school, and/or (I imagine) had a job while going to school, he'd probably be fine, or at least better off, too.

I'm roughly the same age as Lee and went to school at roughly the same time. I had 2 Pell grants, 2 student loans, 2 at-school jobs (1 in the CS dept office and 1 as a research assistant doing LISP/Prolog programming) and a summer job at Pizza Hut. I managed work my way through school, get a job and pay off my debts. What's his problem?

Well, see, there's your problem: you wasted your life working in Pizza Hut instead of spending your summers pondering the greatness that someday you would bestow on humanity through your writing.

Comment Re:1 thing, among others (Score 1) 583

Also, it would have been great to know what 'stock options' were.

...snip...

* In extremely rare cases both the lottery aspect and the fine art aspect will conspire. The company succeeds in the lottery of business, and you will have kept them long enough for them to achieve some value and not sold them for a nice dinner or entertaining night. These extremely rare and extremely lucky individuals discover unexpectedly they can buy a mansion and retire early.

Also, you can fall victim to having lots and lots of pre-IPO or pre-investment-round options which can be diluted to the point of worthlessness. If you are not a founder of the company and driving the ship when the options are massaged through the funding rounds, do not consider any options as future earnings. Consider them as worthless trinkets, then you can only be pleasantly surprised when they will, hopefully, be worth enough for a night on the town 5 years down the road.

Comment Re:Taking a risk (Score 1) 583

To be honest, I'd be really pissed off if I learned I had wasted my time interviewing someone who had no intention of taking the job.

If you're changing jobs every few years it stands out like a sore thumb on the resume too. It says "hey, I won't be here very long". I'm not joking, we've brought up that topic a few times when evaluating candidates.

It's a two-way street. If you can't convince me during the interview that I want to work for you, who's time has been wasted? Hiring the right person is hard work, that's just part of being a manager.

Comment Re: 1 thing (Score 1) 583

At some point your old car is worth less than the minimum trade in price they will give you. The trick is to time it just right so that you roll on to the forecourt just as the engine chokes on the last drop of gas, and conclude the sale a few minutes before the wheels fall off.

Never fool yourself into thinking a car dealership is paying more than a trade-in is worth. Dealerships are not in the charity business; they will make money off of it; either by reselling the car or rolling it into the deal on the new car.

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