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Comment Re:Seriously? (Score 1) 127

Ah, TA.

I remember my brother and I playing that game for so many nights, we got to the point where we'd race to a given objective. The most fun was building the automatic annihilator cannon (can't remember what it was called).

We finished within 4 seconds of each other, and must destruction was wrought.

Good times.

Comment Re:Top four comments (Score 1) 210

Man, you're completely wrong.

The Earth doesn't have a population limit. 8 billion is no closer than 1 billion.

We can all live comfortable, luxurious lives.

The problems we're facing have nothing to do with resource exhaustion (aside from petroleum), but inefficiency and pollution.

We can absolutely produce goods without air pollution. We have sources of essentially limitless energy. We can absolutely use nuclear reactors to ship goods - no need for bunker oil.

It's a question of economics and political engagement. Increasing efficiency means some people are going to lose their jobs, and some companies are going to go out of business. That is the main hurdle we all face, not population growth.

Comment Re:Modern consumer solar (Score 1) 130

Don't let that experience sour you on PV solar. What you're seeing has nothing to do with the technology itself; solar works extremely well, even at high latitudes, when installed correctly. Ask any sailor, NASA engineer, or grid energy systems expert.

If you're seeing 45W during the day on a $10k+ array, sue the installer because it's malfunctioning.

BTW - You don't want vertical panels except at the poles (or temporarily when mounted on a heliostat).

Comment Re: Modern consumer solar (Score 1) 130

It's just some random off-brand from eBay I bought two years ago, but I've had really good luck with most of the modern panels with sunpower cells.

No reviews on it, but it looks identical to this one:

39W folding sunpower panel

Plugged into the PowerAdd version of this power bank:

32,000mAh power bank

... via a cheap "MPPT" controller (non-automatic) floating the panel at 17V.

Comment Modern consumer solar (Score 2) 130

Modern consumer solar is breathtakingly amazing.

We forget how bad things were just 15-20 years ago.

Earlier today, I set up a folding panel with sunpower cells; it was literally vertical, in a window, facing South. Total surface area.. maybe 3sqft, weighing 1lb. It was making ~20W for 4 hours, and managed to completely recharge my 130Wh battery pack in 8. Through a window. In the winter, in Canada.

The thing cost $120.

It's easy to get lost in the constant claims of breakthroughs while forgetting what an amazing time we live in. 20 years ago, this panel would have blocked out the sun and cost a months' salary.

Comment Re:If it ain't broke... (Score 2) 263

So, here's what happens:

As a product improves, it gathers users. This is a mark of continuing success.

Features are added, and users rejoyce.

At some point, the product plateaus. There are no new users coming in, and people start getting nervous.

A UI designer is introduced to the product.

"There's a whole market of learning-disabled children and moderately senile elderly folks we've been ignoring this whole time! They get confused by all of this rich functionality. Burn it to the ground!"

... and they do. They onboard a bunch of users who were formerly confused by features like "close all tabs," while their core fanbase deserts the product. But that fact doesn't become known for some time.

Rinse, repeat. Bitter much? Nah.

Comment Re:Liability (Score 4, Insightful) 497

That's it.

A lot of people don't realize that click-through agreements are mostly unenforceable because they're almost all one-sided contracts.

When you purchase a product, it's your to use. This right is enshrined in all kinds of law in both the US and Canada.

So "click OK to agree to the EULA/contract" is attempting to impose restriction without commensurate compensation. You already have the right to use the software, regardless of whether or not you click OK, so the EULA is not providing you any compensation. That makes it invalid, except when tied to services that you don't own.

But I'd be happy to see a new law introduced (in Canada, at least) that explicitly outlaws EULAs for everything non-service related, and severe restrictions on service agreements as well.

Hell, make onerous service contract agreements themselves taxable assets.

Comment Re:Flamebait opinion piece, not news. (Score 1) 242

"Why not both?"

Because we live in nations under the rule of law, we can impose reasonable restriction on those who seek to profit from our vast array of shared resources and capital.

The right to own and repair ones' property shall not be infringed. John Deere shall not impose upon owners, and will honour warranty obligations as required by law. Competitors shall be allowed to thrive, and service all hardware and software.

If after all of that consumer protection you still have a problem with John Deere, then you can take your business elsewhere.

But the two options are not mutually exclusive.

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