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Comment Re:Meh... (Score 1) 365

I think the vehicle in this accident does have a user interface problem but as foreigner in the USA, I have observed that most Americans never use the parking brake or hand brake as I call it. Sometimes where I have lunch at a cafe and I sit looking out a window at a parking lot, I see lots of cars arriving. Pretty much without exception I see the car rocking back and forward as people get out or, if it's on a slope, it moves abruptly when the driver releases the foot brake and it crunches up tight on the transmission. I asked a few friends why they don't use the brake and I've only received blank looks.

I surprised that the warnings I've read about this accident are mostly just saying "double check that it's in park". I have seen a clear recommendation to put the brake on.

Comment Re:To hire specific people (Score 1) 465

That only applies to "H-1B dependent employers and willful violator employers". See the paragraph above that piece on the DOL site.

If an employer wants to hire a few H1-B employees (less than 15% of their workforce) then there is no requirement to make any special effort to find a US worker.

So ... perhaps you're right. Maybe a lot of the ads are for H1-Bs in that category, I don't know. I still think most of the ads you see like that are related to green card applications rather than H1-B.

Comment Re:I thought it was both (Score 1) 465

I thought employers who presented a bona fide reason why they could not find an American were more likely to be considered for inclusion in the quota.

I don't think so. It's basically who gets their application in first before the quota is used up each year. There are some other conditions. There is a maximum percentage of a company's workforce which can be H1Bs. They also have to be paid the "prevailing wage" as determined by the Dept of Labor.

All the posters here talking about proving that a company "can't find an American" are confused. That requirement exists for permanent residency through employment (aka, "green card"), not H1B.

Comment Re:Is there a reason to keep archives private? (Score 1) 251

That's probably a reason for many groups but I don't think that these admins are doing it for that reason. They'll say things like "even with the archives private I still have to deal with a lot of spam". They honestly think they're fighting spam by keeping the archives private.

I think they get lots of attempted posts from non-members and that is because the posting address is in plain text on the group's home page. I don't know if they have an option to remove that.

Comment Is there a reason to keep archives private? (Score 4, Interesting) 251

This is more to do with Yahoo Groups than Google Groups but they seem similar. Recently I've joined several Yahoo Groups about specialized ham radio topics. Nearly all of them keep their archives private. I have apply to join (basically push a button and say who I am) and then wait for approval from the admin. Once approved I can read the archives and also post. Posting from members is usually unmoderated. It's painless enough but still very frustrating when I'm just searching around for information and a quick look at the archives is probably all I want.

I don't mind having to join if I want to post but do they achieve anything by keeping the archives private? Yahoo obscure the email addresses so spammers' 'bots are not going to get much from them. I've asked several admins "why do you keep the archives private?" and have not received a convincing answer. It usually goes something like "I understand your frustration but we have a lot of trouble with spam" and sometimes goes on to imply what a silly question I asked. Well ... I still don't see how keeping the archives private helps to reduce spam. I haven't been a group admin so maybe I'm missing something.

I can understand keeping archives private or non-existent for a group on a personal or private subject but that doesn't apply to these groups.

My guess is that this is Yahoo's default setting when a group is created and few admins really think about it. Of course Yahoo want as many people as possible to join.

Comment Re:slightly off topic (Score 2, Interesting) 380

Going back to rotary phones which went clockwise 0987654321 (except in NZ) 111 would be really fast to dial but it can happen accidentally too easily with a loose wire or something because it's just three pulses. I'm guessing but that sort of accidental dialing is why the British choose 999. It's very unlikely that a loose wire would generate 9 pulses at the right pulse rate even once let along three times. But ... it's slower so maybe the US took a compromise and went for 911. I suspect in practice that the time you gain with less dial movement would be lost moving your finger.

The Kiwi dials went clockwise 0123456789 so I guess we followed the Brits and choose 111 which is the same pulses as 999 elsewhere.

Australian 000 is an odd choice. I vaguely remember some problems long ago with toll blocking on phones also unintentionally blocking 000. That probably only happened with equipment not approved for Australia.

Comment Re:Power grid is particularly problematic in Texas (Score 1) 414

Someone told me that there are three grids in the USA. East, West and Texas. Two grids can only be connected if there is a way to get the AC in both grids to be in phase before connecting them. Apparently there is no easy way of doing that short of shutting down all power stations in one grid first perhaps. That would mean putting Texas in the dark while they're connect to one of the other grids and then bringing the Texas stations slowly online again. It's an engineering and political nightmare and not worth the hassle. Of course the state of Texas is big enough that it probably doesn't need to be connected to the outside world. Being self contained might be useful one day if they decide to succeed from the nation. Despite that, I believe there are a few DC lines in and out of Texas.

Comment Radios to receive digital TV sound? (Score 3, Interesting) 589

I hope there will be cheap radios that can pickup digital TV sound like there is now for analog.

During the recent long power outage in New Hampshire, we found it very useful to have a little radio that picked up TV sound. The coverage of the emergency seemed to be better on TV than radio.

Radios like that will soon be less useful.

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