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Comment Can be both.. (Score 1) 615

Human need for company & interaction is understandable, however, what I don't understand is that why are we discussing this in terms of either-or. i have seen plenty of folks who telecommute 1-2 days a week and are perfectly fine with it. This also allows more types/numbers of jobs to be telecommute-able since usually even those jobs that can be done remotely can need occasional 'human touch'.

Comment Re:India Tablets: One Man's Story (Score 1) 294

You are forgetting that there is a big portion of population in India that lives in rural/small town . The penetration of education till high school even tho weak (in villages) & not well managed but DOES exists. I can see tonnes of uses for something like this in such areas. These people are too poor to get full blown computers but they are not so stupid to not realize the value of education. This one device can potentially replace a plethora of textbooks a poor kid has to carry (or does not has access to) to get to school in a nearby village. This has a potential of turning into a mass scale e-book distribution mechanism. My only concern is about the chances of actually hitting that price target (or ballpark). It seems too low for a device like that. In any case if they do I'll personally buy a bunch to donate.

Comment Re:it's more about us, less about him (Score 1) 421

This is pretty much the smartest remark i have seen in this whole discussion. I can understand why do we have to push our framework of life onto everybody else that seems to 'not conform'. Its almost as if we need everybody to buy into our way of thinking to convince ourselves that we are all fine.

This reminds me of a quote from my favorite philosopher J Krishnamurti:
"It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society."

Comment Re:If True, Fascinatingly Bizarre Logic (Score 1) 720

A comment about shale oil & canada's tar sands (has been discussed quite extensively on the oil drum, PO discussion site). Even if the govt ban is lifted and the price of oil hovers above $120/bl still the big problem with these 'non-traditional' sources is a concept called EROEI which is basically the net energy gain over the amount spend extracting the energy source. So basically, the EROEI for traditional oil has been in range of 100:1 to 20:1. for these sources it is quite low (i think 5:1 at best) which will certainly sustain present economic model of the world.

BTW the would you care to guess the net energy for corn ethanol ... its is 1.3:1.

Comment Re:It's not fearlessness that's the problem (Score 1) 660

Media is not the reflection of what people want its a reflection of what people (as unconscious as they are) would buy into .. that's what the 'big interests' would wrap their arguments up in.

If one just looks at an issue from 2 opposing viewpoints you will find every issue can be broken into pieces that that will be leaning to one side or other. The key to demagoguery is to miss the pieces that don't fit the point you are making.

The problem is here really is that YOU (as in the public) does not really have a more nuanced & insightful source of opinions plus they don't have time to do this research as they have preferences (American idol??).


Nothing To Fear But Fearlessness Itself? 660

theodp writes "In a post last August, Robert X. Cringely voiced fears that Goldman Sachs and others were not so much evil as 'clueless about the implications of their work,' leaving it up to the government to fix any mess they leave behind. 'But what if government runs out of options,' worried Cringely. 'Our economic policy doesn't imagine it, nor does our foreign policy, because superpowers don't acknowledge weakness.' And now his fears are echoed in a WSJ opinion piece by Peggy Noonan titled 'We're Governed by Callous Children.' She writes, 'We are governed at all levels by America's luckiest children, sons and daughters of the abundance, and they call themselves optimists but they're not optimists — they're unimaginative. They don't have faith, they've just never been foreclosed on. They are stupid and they are callous, and they don't mind it when people become disheartened. They don't even notice.' With apologies to FDR, do we have nothing to fear but fearlessness itself?"

Comment Re:Joystiq has a Q&A with Netflix (Score 1) 145

Sony has a competing video rental service with Play-station network. I'd bet Sony has been fighting this tooth and nail till netflix decided to give em the finger and do it the BD-Live route.

But you see in the end nflx will come out as winner as with this solution they have covered much larger (future) install base than just the ps3s.

Comment This could be useful.. (Score 1) 64

OK OK before you mod me down hear me out.

This can be used to provide some really good coverage of ski sports if you mount a camera on it. Imagine the kind of angles this can follow if this was one of the 'fellow skiers'.

I think ESPN or winter Olympics coverage folks can definitely make good use of this technology in situations where human beings cannot be present with a reasonably decent photography equipment.

Comment Re:GPUs need more RAM for us (Score 1) 295

if you are memory bandwidth limited or do too much of interleaved parallel & serial processing then you might find these folks ( ) interesting. they do a opteron socket based co-processor. In many applications i have seen being able to model the right type of operation while hiding access latency works out best. Now only if somebody will does the same co-processor with nvidia gpus that would be superb.

Comment Re:This is creepy, but what's really new here? (Score 1) 166

My real concern with this is that while this form of marketing is just another way of 'getting to you' but there are longer term (& subtler) aspects of it. I'll elaborate it, Basically every other form of marketing is creating a hypothetical situation which is biased towards the product being pushed. but it still has to go through the assimilate-evaluate mechanism of brain. Worst that can happen to a subject is that they will remember a particular product/tune longer term & hopefully (for the marketer) till he has to make a purchase decision. The evil of these approaches is that the scheme bypasses the mechanisms created through life experiences and directly impresses an idea upon the mind. This in longer term , I think, will have the same kind of effect on brain as something like gambling or cigarette addiction.

There is another way of looking at it, its basically that any given situation can be broken up into variations of gross to subtler aspects. In my experience if you keep playing to grosser aspects sooner or later you will start getting grosser responses & that i think is the real damage such approaches.

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