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Comment Re:Open Source is Evil (Score 1) 128

>> We devalued software development by going from license fee based software to open source.
I don't see Red Hat out begging at corners; what's happened is that money isn't paid upfront for some sort of license fee, it's paid out for *support* of the code. If you decide the code is crap, you find an alternative & support *them*. This actually simplifies things by not sinking money into licensing at the beginning, and frankly how most enterprises operate anyway, with the removal of the upfront license. You pay for maintenance. If the customers aren't willing to pay for it, maybe you need to be working on code they *do* want to support.

Comment Scared the existing providers? (Score 2) 204

Minor advantage, at least here in Jacksonville: the prospect of GF arriving scared AT&T into stringing more fiber. I was able to get it at my place this summer, and already having DirecTV meant no data caps, a lower bill than the combined Comcast/DTV/Vonage bills I had been paying, and a jump from 75/12 Mb to 940 symmetric. And being able to call up Comcast and tell them to DIAF didn't hurt my well-being either. Only problem now is what to do in two years when the contract expires and I won't have GF to threaten them with....

Comment Re:Thanks, Google (Score 1) 108

no, no, the internet is FTTH (they dropped a fiber off the pole, drilled through the wall, put a fiber-to-cat-6 box on my wall to their "gateway" box (4-port router + dual-band 802.11ac, plus two VOIP ports). My TV service is off the oval dish on the corner of my roof to two receivers. Ping is 7ms per speedtest

Comment Re:Thanks, Google (Score 1) 108

Same here in Jacksonville FL: Google announced this spring their interest in coming here. First part of July I get a postcard in the mail that AT&T has plumbed my neighborhood for FTTH and here's the package deal. Since I already had DirecTV the bundled cost for net/TV/VOIP was about $50/month less than my bills to Comcast, DirecTV & Vonage, and my bandwidth test via speedtest is now 940 Mb both ways vs. 80/10 with Comcast, and with the satellite bundle there's no data cap. Bundle cost is good for two years, by which point with any luck Google will be in town & I can decide *which* FTTH provider to go with. Embarrassment of riches...

Comment Re:Your job is to deliver the internet @ speed rat (Score 2) 218

cable-cutters going to Netflix, Sling, etc scare the crap out of Comcast, especially as a network owner themselves. Throttling these content providers into Comcast userspace is a (vain) effort to discourage the flood of people fleeing the lousy service and exorbitant pricing offered by Comcast. Notice in the handful of towns deploying Google Fiber, the offers from Comcast suddenly become competitive (I'm in Jacksonville FL, a prospective GF site, and praying to Whatever Gods There Are it gets in here and my neighborhood has availability). I can live with torrenting my Walking Dead fix (Google TV service lacks AMC) for the chance to tell Comcast to take their pricey, lousy service and shove it.

Comment Re:Airports can tell TSA to get out (Score 1) 266

Problem is that any airports that punt the TSA have to maintain the same security-theater standards, so little is gained except removing the civil-service immunity-to-competence seen since federalizing them. I agree with the others that the biggest REAL improvements to air security are latching cockpit doors and upgrading the passengers' attitude to respond to threats. The dubious body scanners, strip-off of shoes/belts, the War on Moisture, the degrading searches of elderly & disabled, etc etc are simply knee-jerk responses to what the *last* attackers did. I also agree that the disruption of travel plans from excessive delays and the oppressive mindset of the TSA is as damaging long-term as any actual attack. Problems now are a) TSA downsizing from expecting most people to sign up for the pre-check program, and being surprised when casual travelers refused to pay even more for saving time on the security line b) the airlines' raising bag-check fees, prompting people to carry through as much as possible c) lower fuel costs leading to reduced fares leading to increased traffic. Pulling back to pre-9/11 standards with some rigor in checking for knives etc will do more to secure the airports than what's happening now.

Comment Disney doing this already... (Score 1) 921

At their Be Our Guest restaurant in WDW Magic Kingdom, they have multiple self-service kiosks to pick your entree & dessert, it kicks out a ticket and you pay at a register. There are staffed kiosks for those uncomfortable with using screens. My assumption is that this frees up more staff for the kitchen and handling tables.

Comment Re:What's your plan to stop terrorism? (Score 4, Insightful) 243

No one here seriously has a problem with law enforcement monitoring legitimate suspects for potential risk. We *DO* have a serious problem with wholesale monitoring of personal communications, absent probable cause, in the hope of catching someone, somewhere, doing something they don't like. The notion of 'general warrants' by the British authorities was the reason for their explicit ban in the Fourth Amendment. And the whole 'Founders didn't have to deal with terrorists' argument is put to bed by a quote from Madison to Jefferson: "It is a universal truth that the loss of liberty at home is to be charged to the provisions against danger, real or pretended, from abroad." The majority of the disrupted terror plots since 9/11 have been accomplished by old-school boots-on-ground detective work, not by signals intelligence. There is no indication that plotters like the Boston Marathon bombers, etc, that *were* sadly successful had used any crypto in their communications. The 'lone wolf' nutcase is by nature hard to track. Most of the additional screening put in place since the attacks has been window dressing ("security theater") meant to make us feel safer, not particularly contributing to actual security. The solution to terrorism is NOT TO BE TERRORIZED, to deal with the nutjobs as just that, and refuse to turn ourselves into the sort of regulated police state they'd prefer to see.

Comment Re:Don't let facts get in your way... (Score 1) 227

As many people have noted, the two problems with the reported rate are a) the number of people that have effectively given up looking, or are working low-end jobs off the books. This makes any job growth look better since it's against a smaller pool of active workers b) underemployment; the laid-off tech working at a call center, or the call-center worker flipping burgers, is employed but at a steep hit to their former income. The impact of this to the overall economy does not seem to be getting reported to any extent, but the wage stagnation is a downward spiral as people have less income for anything but basic requirements. My brother-in-law has been laid off from Alcatel for months, has no prospects and is now looking at selling his home.

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In less than a century, computers will be making substantial progress on ... the overriding problem of war and peace. -- James Slagle