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Comment The grail (Score 1) 95

TV resists all attempts to fix it from the consumer perspective. Even Apple, with unlimited money was unable to tame it. The only workaround is if you get OTA, put up an antenna and wire and run it into a DVR, ranging from Tivo (expensive but easy) to Mediasonic boxes ($40 plus a HDD for $70-cheap but no real guide...it's a HDTV VCR) When I got a $6 per month sports fee which the cable co refused to cut,, we were done. This would be good if you can't get OTA.

Comment Great Idea-works well at the Village level (Score 3, Interesting) 304

I worked in Village Government for a while in NY. All bills must be published...read...debated...and voted on. You can't combine things in a bill and must vote on that one item. None of this applies to the State Government, or the Feds. No last minute sausages, or tacking a kill Planned Parenthood rider to Veterans Benefits. I iwish I lived in a world where the upper level governments had to follow the rules our little villages do.

Comment Apple Overreach (Score 1) 212

Anyone recall being forced to synch your contacts to icloud only....or how the entire world was going to Thunderbolt. I'm happy they see the wonder of the USB-c, but I think there could be another model cycle of standard ports. Losing the magsafe is moronic..it has saved me several times. Last, I bought an iPhone 6 when the 7 came out. Apple, you are supposed to give us more...for the price above Windows, I expect a stable OS, hardware that justifies the premium, mostly, and ease of use. WTF ?

Comment Re:That's what you get for being a fat slob. (Score 3, Insightful) 195

Marathon runners get heart attacks, and folks who eat healthy get cancers too. Illness isn't always "your fault". You could cross the street today, look both ways, in a crosswalk and green light, and get seriously messed up by an uninsured and stolen car. just sayin...

Comment You aren't a consumer here (Score 2) 195

I love the "consumer" model of health care....guess what, you aren't. Medical stuff is the only thing you cannot price shop or even compare. Even if you could, the hospital will charge you differently for different insurers...and as I found out once....if you don't hit the deductable (five stitches from a minor accident) you don't even get your insurance company rates (all that money and I'm not even in the Buyer's Club ?) When you get really sick, every single thing you use is billed. Bed. Docs...Drugs...machines (and when a relative had a breast biop done, they charged for each use of the machine, not just "turn on and use". No normal person can keep track of this, and the hospitals know it. Insurers, who have an idea, will fight tooth and nail on costs and fees. What we end up with now is two tiers. If you can get into or afford private insurance, not an ACA plan, you are working for Government or a very large company. If you don't, you are stuck with an ACA plan, which will NOT cover a majority of your doctors, or even possibly the hospital. Yes, folks who work for Govt. or big companies are still somewhat protected from the health insurance nightmare. So, yes, it is very conceivable that this person is getting nailed by "out of network" charges. When you are laying in a hospital bed, you don't ask the attending if they take Aetna or Blue Cross, and send them hither if they say no. For years, US insurers have benefited by their claims practices, fobbing off the poor and old on the Government, and skimming the cream of "healthy" risk pools. The ACA stopped the worst practices, but also forced anyone who could to leave the exchange plans. I got an ACA plan once. Every single provider..my kids pediatrician....wife's ob/gyn....my GP...the allergiest "oh we're sorry we don't accept any insurance from the exchange". You are all the access of a Medicaid patient but you pay full price for the lack of services....and I used to pay 1/3 the price for the same docs to smile at me and take a $20 copay...so an ACA plan is a non-starter in the NYC area and I'd seriously consider paying the tax penalty if I was unable to get coverage elsewhere. The insurance industry has managed to propagandize the low information bits of our population to not want "socialist" medicine. I've been exposed to the Canada and German systems...while not perfect, they are a hell of a lot more fair and reasonable than the mosh that we have here in the US...the only folks who are "OK" are the Big Company and Government policy people. All the rest are one illness away from a trip to Bankruptcy Court. Thank the Bush Administration for not allowing negotiation of drug prices, and the Obama Administration for the ACA and tax penalty. The lack of a 'government option' was clearly designed to make sure there wasn't competition or any reliable measure of the private industry practices. At a very minimum, there should be published price schedules at hospitals, a right to sue health insurers for poor claims practices or denial of vital services, and one single payer pool, not the cherry picking of the healthy. After all, if you limit coverage to folks who can work a 40 hour week, you've just cut off most of your expensive patients...and insurance companies have gotten away with this far too long.

Comment Windows CE - hmmmm (Score 1) 292

I have a Caddy with the Windows CE computer. It works decently, except that it isn't really integrated into the car electronics. It turns on and off separately, and none of the data can transfer to the dashboard gage cluster or the dot matrix readout in the center. I get a distinct impression that the GM engineers and the Windows folks had clearly drawn lines-there is a computer in the dash but it isn't really integrated into the GM electrics... On the other hand the touch screen works well and the system is stable. I'm grateful, it could have CUE...which is a botch....so in this case, MS actually did better.

Comment Re:Almost cut the cord (Score 1) 198

When I cut the cord I heard from lots of neighbors who were tired of the $200 plus per month. When I told them an antenna on the house was a one time expense of maybe $150 all in, they all sort of said ... what ? Put up an antenna ? How do I do that ? Run a wire ? and all still pay the $, because the fear of change. I've even demonstrated to a few my homebrew bow tie antenna, which works better than it looks. I'm 40 miles from my transmitters, and today the signal strengths are between 98% and 84%. We are odd in that we have cable and FiOs on my block, making this the one of few places with any competition. I use cable broadband as it is way cheaper than FiOs....FiOs has a huge tax tier that does not apply to cable, and at least in this area, Optimum has always given good response, where fighting with Verizon starts at face palm and goes downhill. I did get a $10 increase in my naked broadband, but with netflix/hulu/skitchy sites overseas, no worries. A lifetime Tivo, bought during cable era does great OTA only duty...and an older Mac Mini streams beautifully, with no issues in 1080p. All in, I'm still way cheaper than six months of my neighbor's CATV subscription, and I don't have to suffer the SA 8300 box There is an inertia

Comment Re:How is this different from any university? (Score 1) 334

As someone paying for a kid in school, here are the numbers..... 30k-State School 40k State School for out of staters 60k Name Private University. I went to Name Private University AND professional school for less than my kid is going to State School for out of staters...and she gets credit, literally and figuratively, for an academic scholarship getting 10k off the tuition price. A 4 year degree is a stamp of 'middle class' , although certainly not a guarantee. Schools know this, and the question they are asking is "How much would you pay to make sure YOUR kid stays in the top 10% ?" It is for this reason I will have bought a Ferrari, for cash, for the cost of college, but it is worth it so MY kid gets out with degree and no student loan ball and chain. (and make no mistake, student loan debt is debt bondage) The educational system has gotten seriously phucked in the last 30 years....

Comment Re:Didn't watch it. (Score 2) 219

You can't watch anything without a DVR. From the Sony HDD 250 I used to have, to the lifetime Tivos now, to even the $40 homeworx box and cheapo disc connected, I never, ever watch any TV in realtime. Not only are the ads too many, they are obnoxious and repetitive. My teens don't know what a network is, what appointment or water cooler TV is, and don't care to. Most TV is watched on a laptop. I was in a hotel with cable recently. It took ten minutes to turn off, and realize how bad it truly is.

Comment FUD (Score 3, Insightful) 67

This is silly. Every rental/loaner I've ever had has already five phones paired. I delete everything, and pair mine. When the car goes back I make sure I"ve deleted my profile as well. If you can read slashdot, you can figure this out, be it iDrive, Sync, CUE or AcuraLink. I'd be more concerned with leaving addresses in the satnav...but I blank those too.

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