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Comment US$2500 for a RCA stereo cable from Chord??? WTF?? (Score 1) 418

When Chord announced their latest cables 1m ethernet cable (GB£850 is about US$1300) , and 1m RCA stereo cable (GB£1600 is US$2500), I emailed them asking for some technical details, as if I might be a buyer, but they didn't respond. They probably sensed I had a bullshit detector.

I had a discussion with their local Trading Standards, a government-run operation that exists to protect consumers, stating that their scientific claims were bogus, and the TS people said that since I hadn't bought the product, and they hadn't had complaints from other people who'd bought the product, and Chord could show them reviews praising their product, my complaint was invalid.

My working assumption is this: it's like the story of emperor's new clothes. When someone had paid a rediculously high price for cables and believed the pseudo-scientific mumbo-jumbo, they will resist any efforts to debunk it lest they appear a complete idiot. I think it's actually a mechanism in the brain, akin to some cultish religious beliefs and even fanboyism.

Comment Baytrail-D boards? (Score 1) 183 The Intel Silvermont Atom boards are very electrically efficient and offer surprisingly good performance. You can buy a board for under US$100 and all you need to add is case, PSU, RAM and mass storage. Some boards have VGA, some DVI, with or without legacy serial and parallel, lots of choices. Manufacturers include gigabyte, msi, Asus, supermicro.

Comment Re:Beta testers (Score 1) 91

I've used opensuse for many years, I guess because when I wanted to adopt the linux desktop, a colleague used it so I did too.

I usually lag behind new releases by months, unless I'm setting up a new computer and so I don't have anything to lose

our experience at work of BTRFS having poor and inconsistent performance have put me off ever using it personally except as experimental. OTOH, we found ZFS to be very good.

Comment Re:Beta testers (Score 1) 91

pah, ext3 is too new fangled. ext2 was good enough for my grandpa, is good enough for me, and is good enough for my kids. on a serious note, when ext3 was still new, I used to format /boot as ext2 and not ext3 so that all the various rescue disks would be able to fix it.

Comment a good car analogy (Score 2) 276

Most people who buy new cars do so when trading in their old one.

Imagine if people couldn't trade in their old car and had to keep it forever or have it scrapped/recycled?

Or, imagine that if they sold the car, half the features on the car stopped working.. say, because the radio required a non-transferable licence key which expired when sold, so requiring the new owner to buy their own.

Depreciation of used cars would be even worse than it is now, and the reduced sale price of used cars would fall and people would be hold onto them longer. New car sales would also fall significantly in response, and either manufacturers or dealers would reduce their prices to try and boost sales, or simply that there would be a big shake-down and manufacturers and dealers would go out of business to allow the survivors to maintain volume and margins.

In the meantime, "piracy" would increase as people found work-arounds to renable or retrofit features to their cars to add and restore features "stolen" by official dealer network. There would be a boost in jobs for people to repair or maintain older cars, and cost of spares would rise, and thus growth in third party components, and a backlash from manufacturers trying to copyright, patent or trademark spares to prevent that loss of revenue to unauthorised parts manufacturers.

Comment the lies we tell ourselves and each other (Score 4, Insightful) 163

"I'll get round to doing backups one day"

"I'll renew my antivirus licence next day pay"

"The cheque is in the post"

"I'll pull out in time"

All are the many lies people tell themselves and each other.

Basically as humans we tend to only do things which will have an immediate impact, and are capable of doublethink over things which might not happen or can be deferred.

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The only possible interpretation of any research whatever in the `social sciences' is: some do, some don't. -- Ernest Rutherford