I agree that the larger market wants sports. but if you like sports enough to pay $35/month pretty much just for that, why would you not get something like a NBA or NFL or MLB yearly pass? Those are around $100 or so generally, for a whole YEAR - and you get to watch every game, including many the networks do not carry (for MLB) along with a lot more live stats stuff if you use the apps.
It's not that clear cut. Take the SGI example. You sell graphical workstations for $10+K, with a $2-3K mark up on each one. You launch a range of graphics accelerator boards for $500-1000. All of your customers switch to buying commodity workstations from someone else with one of your boards inside. You're now probably not making enough on unit sales to cover your R&D costs and the company goes under. The gamble is that not only will your customers buy these boards, an order of magnitude more people will buy them and you can then use this money to find the $100 version that you can sell to another order of magnitude of customers.
The real danger for SGI was that someone else would start with the $100 board (which was nowhere near competitive with the performance of an SGI machine) and sell it with low margins to enough people (who would never think of buying an SGI machine) that they could then afford to develop the $500-1000 board that would kill the graphical workstation market.
The NSA is evil. Its employees are not doing important work: they are evil.
The NSA is a huge organisation with a dual mission. They are tasked with protecting critical infrastructure and being able to attack other people's critical infrastructure. These are fundamentally contradictory (you find a zero-day vulnerability in something like OpenSSL: mission 1 requires that you disclose it and get it fixed ASAP to protect your infrastructure, mission 2 requires that you keep is secret so that you can use it to attack everyone else) and as such they're largely isolated into different parts of the organisation. Even if you completely disapprove of mission 2, arguing that mission 1 is not important work and is inherently evil makes you seem like an idiot.
When the FBI used a court order to compel Apple to decrypt the San Bernadino shooter's iPhone, Trump encouraged people to boycott Apple if they wouldn't decrypt the phones. This was when Apple was leading a charge to resist court-ordered decryption.
Apple did not resist court-ordered decryption. They cooperated with the FBI even without a warrant to decrypt a single phone, they only objected when the FBI failed to follow their instructions correctly, locked the phone even more, and demanded the ability to decrypt any iPhone without oversight.
I fail to see how nsa has EVER 'kept us safe'. and due to their being untouchable and above the law, we'll NEVER KNOW, either.
Then NSA is a dual-mission agency. They do SIGINT, but they are also tasked with ensuring the security of critical infrastructure. Some of this involves designing crypto protocols, some auditing nominally secure systems, and so on (for example, writing SELinux). It's entirely possible to be working entirely on this kind of thing. You're probably making the world a better place, even if the net contribution of your entire organisation might not be.
I consider a new device or technology to have been culturally accepted when it has been used to commit a murder. -- M. Gallaher