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Comment Re:Pretty cool (Score 1) 162

(f) And the NSA!
(g) You recoup nothing when you stop paying. You are left no physical assets (server).
(h) Nor the skills you'd gain setting up an efficient (*) home-cloud yourself

(*) The 'Avoid an Always-On PC' statement is misleading. Its possible to let your PC asleep and issue wake-on-lan packets via the internet router (or a small RasberryPi Zero hanging off of it)
http://lifehacker.com/348197/a...

Comment Re: Let's talk about the meat of the matter. (Score 1) 150

Genuine free range is better for the envt. Not fake 'free range', where cage hens get a plank to perch on.

I once visited a farm where the famer was raising pigs and cattle using organic methods and intelligently 'rotating livestock' in his farmland, giving it time to recover. He had turned the farm around; topsoil was coming back, a nitrogen loving weed overgrowth was receding, vegetation native to the area was returning. The farm was heathier and closer to homeostasis.

To distinguish between fake and true, ask questions. And speak to the source of your food. As this farmer said... to eat well, nothing beats a direct relationship between producer and consumer.

Comment Its Highlander Season... (Score 1) 259

Two Seattle technology companies ...
... intent on market domination
... selling ads, apps, entertainment hardware, phones (cough, cough), songs, tablets, video, webservices
... with comparable ad networks, app stores, market capitalization, operating systems, patent portfolios, payment services, research groups (robotics, deep learning, etc), search engines
... (one still sells books; the other, computer software -- but as hobbies)
... meet on the Windows 10 battlefield.

  "There can be only one"

Comment Re: So... (Score 1) 990

You know we're pretty much agreed on everything, right? :)

My original point is we've been reduced to service workers keeping our devices alive -- too many batteries everywhere. Perhaps the solution is a robot with a flexible gooseneck that goes around (say, in a home) opportunistically charging devices with near-field wireless charging (or even by just plugging in). Of course, the robot must keep track of _its_ own power cable :)

Comment So... (Score 1) 990

People now charge their cordless phone, mobile phone, wearable, tablet, game device, home laptop, work laptop, power bank and cordless vaccum. And regularly change batteries on their wireless mice, wireless keyboard, TV remote, cable remote, game console remote, smoke alarms, burglar alarms, radio and alarm clock. And, if frugal, think about battery lifetime and replacement batteries for their cordless phone, mobile phone, wearable, tablet, game device, home laptop, work laptop, power bank, cordless vaccum and hybrid car. And if ecologically-conscious, think about rechargeable batteries for their wireless mice, wireless keyboard, TV remote, cable remote, game console remote, radio and alarm clock. And responsible battery disposal.

In addition to all this, we now get to charge the car each night - not with a USB cable or meek little battery, but a heavy duty cable that can instantly kill us if things go wrong.

Who's servicing whom exactly?

Comment Re:Democracy in Fiji (Score 1) 110

This. 'Democracy' in Fiji has historically been tinged with racial supremacy. Bainimarama is a boon to the nation - an ethnic Fijian who looked past the interests of his race, to the interest of his country and all its people.

"Fullman suggested in the article that people in the group may well have said violent things about Bainimarama,"

Yes, much the same way Islamic fundamentalists may well say violent things about infidels. How is monitoring these guys wrong? Because they're culturally 'Christian', and they - er - didn't mean it? Remember Timothy McVeigh and Anders Breivik?

Snowden may be right (or wrong) about the *manner* of monitoring. Maybe a warrant was warranted. But monitoring people threatening violence is exactly what any responsible government does - even 'pro-democracy' activists.

Comment Two updates? 'Red Pill' and 'Blue Pill'? (Score 0) 150

'Blue Pill' empowers your life with the power of Azure. Microsoft agents like Clip...er, Cortana now use technologies like UEFI Secure Boot and the Microsoft Store to guide you and protect you from hacking. You can purchase the ID 'Master chief john 117' as your local PC username (additional fee applies). You can also partake of selected offers from select Microsoft partners presented at select times in your daily workflow (for instance, when Cortana detects you starting blankly at the primary screen. After all, human attention is a terrible thing to waste.)

'Red Pill' awakens you to the horrible reality -- you've been lying comatose in a Microsoft pod all along; your 'reality' a hallucination crafted on Microsoft servers....

Hahah! Just kidding - the red pill does no such thing -- its just the blue pill painted red.

Comment Windows 10 probably will be the last version (Score 4, Insightful) 272

Windows 10 probably will be the last version of Windows, but not the way Microsoft imagines it.

By continuing to nag, snoop, spam and lock-down its users, Microsoft is transforming its core offering - its OS - into the opposite of what it should be: an agent of the owner that compels the computer to obey the owner's intent.

Its the age-old agency problem. An agent with a large amount of power (network effects in Microsoft's case) tends to abuse it to the detriment of the principal (Microsoft users). Its same problem when powerful executives persuade their company to reward them richly without commensurate effort. Left uncorrected, the situation worsens (customers quit in disgust, company implodes, etc).

Another company may eventually do to the Microsoft desktop what Apple and Android did to them in mobile. Or Microsoft may wisen up and curb their worst excesses (as they did in the XBox One phone-home fiasco). But it'd be a hard sell to the MS board and would take a lot of imagination on their part to act more directly in favor of consumers, versus short-term shareholder rewards.

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