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Comment Re:Plans for Planes (Score 1) 74

People used to think that, so Concorde was built, but it turned out that not very many people thought speed was enough of a problem to actually pay for it.
London to Paris is less than 350 kilometres.
Even a plane flying at 350 kilometres per hour or a bit less is going to take less time getting from one to the other than driving a car across either of those cities.

Comment Re:Absolutely nuttin' and no one (Score 1) 176

Basically your reply convinces me that you've never made a serious effort to read one of these EULAs.

By the way, I think I should clarify that I don't think Microsoft created the strategy. However I do think they've perfected it, and now it's almost SOP in large companies. The true solution of breaking the excessively large companies into smaller ones seems unlikely to be adopted.

Comment Re: No complaints here (Score 1) 268

We're getting too far from Mars... Therefore I think that all I want to say is that I doubt the Saudis will use their sovereign fund is such wise and benevolent ways. I think the ruling family will just take the money and run, perhaps to Denmark where I think their sovereign wealth fund will be invested well. The extractionists are already committed to releasing way too much carbon and the end game doesn't matter if you are only thinking about dying with the most toys.

Comment Re:The devil needed an escape route (Score 1) 278

I'm certainly not denying that Pence is terrible, but I believe he is terrible within normal bounds of awfulness. I even agree that his goals are egregious, but I think he is basically not that competent. In comparison, I think Trump is much less competent, but his damage potential is much higher because he can be played so easily. I'm not so much in favor of removing the Donald as in dis-empowering Bannon.

As regards Mars and the original topic, I'm not sure if Pence believes in the existence of Mars. What does his current Bible say on the topic? Pretty sure his first nutty religion believes in Mars, but much less certain about his even nuttier second choice.

Comment Re:No complaints here (Score 1) 268

Indeed. My son-in-law's best friend fights wildfires, and he's expecting a bumper summer, because despite lots of snow in Coastal British Columbia, interior regions have had far less snow, which means there's a high expectation that this is going to be a very bad year for forest fires. The costs of those fires are monumental, and many of those costs are spread fire and wide by insurance companies who will need to jack up premiums across the entire pool to make up for the costs. Insurance rates are literally the canary in the coal mine here, and actuaries have been factoring the numerous effects of climate change for some time now.

Comment Re: No complaints here (Score 2) 268

No, deserts heat up and expand, and you have hundreds of millions of people trying to move into your back yard, meaning you have to pay a fuck ton more in taxes to support border patrols, armies, all the while you're facing food and water supply problems because your bread basket regions suddenly are less productive, and you become more reliant on foreign sources of agriculture. Meanwhile many other costs, like insurance, start skyrocketing, or many climate-related problems simply aren't covered. Oh yes, and as mentioned elsewhere collapse of many major fisheries, which will lead to huge pressures on coastal populations in many parts of the world where those fisheries are a significant, if not primary source of protein.

Will it happen in your lifetime? If you're under thirty, very likely yes. I'm in my mid-40s, so hopefully I'll miss some of the nastier effects. My kids and grandchldren won't, sadly. But the West is pretty wealthy, so doubtless will pull through relatively alright, though tens of millions of refugees fleeing regions far more vulnerable and far less economically capable of weathering the worst of it, will start showing up, as I mention above, and the costs of keeping them out or integrating them will be huge. Some areas will simply become unlivable by even the hardier animals, and people have this habit of not just sitting down and dying when survival where they are becomes impossible.

Comment Re: No complaints here (Score 1) 268

What we do know is that Saudi Arabia is spinning off the largest sovereign wealth fund in history. The Saudis know full well that petroleum's reckoning is coming soon, so they're making what they can of it while they can. Like I say elsewhere, in a hundred years I bet large swathes of the Arabian desert will be salt reactors and solar collector arrays. I'll wager they have every intention of being energy titans, whether that be in the form of fossil fuels or solar.

And really, who the hell would want to invest in oil right now? It's clear that OPEC has lost any power to manipulate the price. Every time it looks like supply is going to be restricted, boom the price gets knocked again. Up here in Canada we're watching investment in the oil sands fall simply because production costs are so high, and oil prices so low, that there's little point to even bothering. Shell has sold off 1.3 billion dollars in assets in Canada, so when the big guys begin to act like the end game is coming, you know it isn't far off.

Of course, for the petroeconomies this is a disaster. Whether it's the extreme case like Venezuela, or the more moderate economic contractions of Alberta or North Dakota, a lot of jurisdictions who have basically lived off the oil teat are facing long-term woes.

Comment Re:No thanks (Score 1) 82

neither of them are serious text editors for power users.

No but it's a good example of drastic changes to a functioning piece of software that leave some users unimpressed.

Comment Re:Finally, I can switch to Gnome! (Score 1) 82

There is a thing called "mwm" which stands for the motif window manager.
Given how sloooooooow gnome can be at times despite using video acceleration hardware to attempt to make up for poor coding (problably in gtk and not the actual window manager) it's tempting to use almost anything else other than gnome once you have a few windows up.
While the idea seems to have been to sacrifice speed for shiny it falls well behind on both to things like Enlightenment.

Comment Re:The devil needed an escape route (Score 1) 278

Whoever the small number of Stratfor people clipped those articles from should be congratulated then.
They are no more original than Slashdot and are in the same sort of business of collating information from other places.

Being able to see the future that others can't

No.
Others saw the future and they relayed the message. Your local newspaper would have more employees than the 100 that Stratfor reported as their peak staffing level.

Comment Re: No complaints here (Score 1) 268

You're wasting your time. It might be sincerely stupid or proudly ignorant or paid to fake it, but that doesn't matter. Actually, it might matter in the third case if it gets bonus payments for replies such as yours.

My working hypothesis is that the mechanized propaganda efforts are working. I believe the Russians are the leaders, but I'm not sure why they would care so much on this issue. Even if the risk of detection is low, the possible benefits seems too far away to justify the effort. Yeah, tropical Siberia would be great for them, but it might not work out that way (unless they are also leading in climate modeling). In contrast, the extractionists certainly have short-term concerns that could justify their propaganda investments, even if they aren't as good at it as the Russians are.

I recommend This Changes Everything on the general climate change topic, thought it's flawed in some ways. On the cyber-warfare topic, I'm just about to start The Shadow Factory . I read Cyber War back in 2015, and it was rather disturbing, especially regarding the Chinese capabilities on both offense and defense, but I think the Chinese are quite worried about climate change.

Comment Re: No complaints here (Score 1) 268

Others make the case better. I'm just here to call out pseudo-skeptics for what they are; liars and morons. Do you think, say, anti-vaxxers, Creationists and the whole "HIV doesn't cause AIDS" crowd deserve some sort of continued decent respect. At some point, people who make false and absurd claims should simply be treated like the intellectual midgets they really are.

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