Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Get HideMyAss! VPN, PC Mag's Top 10 VPNs of 2016 for 55% off for a Limited Time ×

Comment Re:Decent PR Move, Bad IC Feelz (Score 5, Insightful) 595

Actually, I think the responses to Trump's comments actually need a "woosh".

He's being unpresidential, but what he's really saying is that: maybe those emails aren't as lost as they would like everyone to believe. Which is to say that if people with the right skills, an inability to be arrested by the government, and a lack of interest in keeping Hillary out of trouble were looking, perhaps they would magically appear.

Just like: maybe the Democratic National Committee wasn't quite as unbiased as they said they were, but no one could prove that... until they could.

Many people think that Russia putting up Edward Snowden is helping out someone who helped America. Do those same people believe Snowden is a traitor for making use of Russia's good graces? Does anyone believe Russia is doing it to help out the cause of civil rights in America?

Of course they're not in it to help us out, but perhaps they might be helping out America in the long term by helping someone who dropped some short term troubles on us.

In this case, calling Trump a "traitor" is missing the point, since I imagine many, if not most of the people calling him a traitor think that Edward Snowden is a great guy. Even though I dislike Trump and just about everything about his campaign, I can see that this is just a little bit too easy and self-serving a distinction between the two.

The point is, if Russia finds something that destabilizes the USA by actually finding the truth, is that good or bad? I don't want Trump to win, but I don't want to excuse Clinton simply because the other option is somewhat worse. Its sort of like picking death by hanging or firing squad. Sometimes a choice isn't really a choice.

In any case, it's all theoretical. I'm sure Clinton had real experts delete those emails, as opposed to the amateur hour IT that got her in trouble to begin with. If anything, the Clintons do seem to come through in the clutch when there's an investigation in the works.

Comment Re:a BAD sports team will pay for GOOD players (Score 1) 163

Although he wasn't a CEO, Yahoo dropped $100+ million on Henrique de Castro for only like 15 months of work before they fired him. This was due to Marissa Mayer basically getting a call from him looking for the job, and her refusal to vet him when she decided he was just the thing Yahoo needed.

I can totally believe that boards will have similar blinders on when it comes to vetting, even though they are supposed to have a search committee process to find the right CEO.

That said, I do agree that we focus a little too much on what these guys get paid. It *is* discouraging to see someone get paid millions to run a company and then be fired from a company which is almost certainly about to have layoffs. Seeing Marissa Mayer get her parachute after basically failing made me a bit steamed, and I got even more steamed when I noticed the Yahoo board changed the bylaws to ensure that the acquisition was classified in such a way as to trigger clauses to give executives even more money on sale.

However, in the end, the problem isn't what someone else makes, and it could be argued that even Mayer couldn't have saved Yahoo, although it doesn't appear that she really did anything that was worth her paycheck in the end. What I think really should matter is that companies are willing to burn money like this to stay on top. Mostly for stock value and to maintain a leadership position.

Yahoo was a profitable company, if you erased all of the acquisitions and fumbling around. It was bringing in a billion in revenue, something it could have kept up if it had been satisfied with just staying in business and being boring. We all kind of think that Yahoo was a sinking ship, but it really wasn't, it was simply at risk of becoming a has-been, but a mildly profitable one. Good news for the company itself and a longer term outlook, but bad news for people who wanted to get in there and drive stock price up.

In the end, the failure to let Yahoo be a mature company with decent, but boring profit is what I think the sin is, and from that original sin is where we get the atrocities like wanting some sort of rock star CEO and throwing good money after bad.

Comment Re:22 Days? (Score 1) 44

Yeah, the way most of these flights go, they end up on the ground longer for getting permissions to fly through airspace, fixing the plane, trying to get more money, and for other random stuff than they actually spend flying.

While you don't need fuel, there's no way you can guarantee that a plane that slow, fragile, and with limited cargo space can remain aloft for long periods of time with human passengers. There is a lot of groundwork, so to speak, to keeping a flight going.

What would be really impressive is if they have been able to actually fly the plane with only short, necessary stops to load food/water and perhaps do some maintenance checking. There would probably be an occasional need to wait for weather on take off. That still wouldn't be 22 days, but I'm sure it could be done in less than 80.

I just wish there was somewhere to go with planes like this. Unless they seriously reduce battery weight, you're never going to do more than some well financed adventuring in a solar plane.

Comment Re:thats (Score 2) 205

3) Hillary Clinton has not had to declare bankruptcy

That's like saying that I've never declared bankruptcy. I haven't, but I've never actually run a major business, and neither has she.

And Fiorina, while probably preferable to Trump, was someone who thought that losing a Senatorial election meant that now she was qualified to run for a Presidential contest as well. It was like she had this script in her head about

1. Run HP successfully
2. Win Senate Election
3. Become President

And no one bothered to mention to her that she hadn't actually accomplished either of the first two steps before trying the third one.

Comment Re:thats (Score 4, Insightful) 205

So, I'm not planning on voting for Trump and would prefer that no one did, but I'd have to ask, of those businesses that Trump went bankrupt on, perhaps all four of them were phone-ins too?

The business world does have ups and downs, and if you're a major player you're going to have them. Even Warren Buffett has the occasional bankruptcy in one or two of his holdings.

So, I think I agree that using something like the four bankruptcies (which in this case were Chapter 11 reorganizations, not liquidations), against Trump is magnifying a certain expected level of failure or error into a big deal. If he really does have 500 investments, then is four bankruptcies actually a big deal?

I actually think Trump needs to be taken very seriously as someone who knows exactly what they are doing, and I'd probably vote for Clinton if I didn't think she'd only make the problem worse. And that's a big deal, because I think the Democratic party platform is divisive and pandering, just like the Republican party platform, they just have fewer rednecks. Electing her is going to keep the pressure cooker from exploding one more term or two, but that just means the explosion is going to be even greater when she's done. She has nothing to help with this current situation, and the DNC mails only show the level of tone-deafness that her and the rest of the Democratic party are experiencing.

Comment Re:Great example of a key flaw in the stock market (Score 2) 191

I wouldn't worry, this is hardly going to put Nintendo out of business. The only losers are those who didn't understand that this was a bubble and that they needed to take their money while they could get it while it was streaking upward, because it was very soon to come straight down again.

Nintendo will bounce off of the opposite and equally emotional response to sell and be back at their usual price in a little while.

If we'd only stop bailing out the losers who make these kinds of mistakes, the market would very efficiently remove them from contention by making them flat broke in two seconds flat.

In 1929 we had stockbrokers jumping off of buildings due to an overemotional response to emotional trading that led to crappy decisions. If only we could have kept the process going to clean the gene pool of these types of brokers.

Comment Re:Breaking news: investors are idiots (Score 4, Insightful) 191

It's not really all that hard, you just have to avoid greed. You sell some as soon as it hits a predetermined point, and some more at another higher predetermined point. Remember, if goes even higher, you aren't losing money by not getting that price, you've made money no matter what. Nintendo isn't a pump and dump stock, so if you end up with some left over at the normal price when the bubble pops, you're doing just fine.

Also, when the stock plummets you have some buy orders when the market irrationally decides that now the company is completely worthless because it isn't overpriced and you make even more money by using your gains on Nintendo to buy Nintendo when everyone is underpricing it. When Nintendo's stock price levels out, you've made even more money.

You will have a problem if you're holding all your cash for that "perfect moment" where you can maximize your take. That's how you end up getting your ass handed to you in sudden downturns in price or you simply miss most of the profit. Free money is free money. Don't get greedy.

Comment Re:Jobs... (Score 2) 140

Yes, although there are a few things that are the responsibility of the legislature that can, if the stars align, be usurped by the executive. The Presidency has been becoming more and more powerful over the years. There are tricks that can be used to apply a veneer of legality to what is not strictly legal, although you need popular support for that sort of thing to work.

Of course, Trump is trying to generate an air of urgency around his campaign. We're in decline, we're under seige. New ideas are needed, etc. Blah blah blah. That same urgency can be used to enact constitutionally "innovative" ideas. There have been a number of well intentioned power grabs like the New Deal and Great Society and some much less well intentioned ones in between.

Comment Re:Why? (Score 1) 70

In 2000, Verizon acquiring Yahoo and AOL would have been an insanely huge deal. It would basically be the equivalent of someone acquiring Google today.

How the mighty have fallen.

That said, AOL has had something of a soft landing after years of free fall, mostly due to the advertising business. After all of the terrible decisions that AOL and Time Warner made, that acquisition pretty much saved AOL as a business, even if it didn't save it as an industry leader.

Yahoo... well... I guess they have Alibaba.

Comment Re:Library of congress (Score 1) 93

Not everyone who works at LOC is actually a librarian by training or in job role. Congress has added responsibilities to it which are related to, but not actually what you'd expect a library to do.

So, it's basically a government agency that happens to have some librarians working for it. Sort of like the Secret Service having been created to stop counterfeiting, which they still have jurisdiction over, but they are much more high profile as bodyguards for the President and related VIPs.

Comment Re:DPI Scaling (Score 1) 67

They are rendering their icons now, as opposed to scaling a raster graphics image like a PNG. So no, they aren't enlarging an existing bitmap. They are basically generating a new image for that scale programmatically.

An SVG formatted vector graphics is basically the same idea. Scaling those is quite crisp, although I don't think this is actually SVG that they are using since that tends to be best used for line art.

Slashdot Top Deals

Often statistics are used as a drunken man uses lampposts -- for support rather than illumination.