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Comment Re:Scam (Score 1) 163

It's a local pollution reduction thing ... Not every truck is on long routes.

True, but many warehouses and distribution centers are within populated areas. There are a huge number of distribution centers east of L.A., and they are a significant contributor to particulate pollution in the area. It is bad enough that it is causing an asthma cluster in the area.

While hydrogen-hybrids may not be suitable for long-haul trucking, there are other options using current-gen tech. One proposal is to switch to LNG, which contributes significantly less pollution per mile driven. A number of states have been experimenting with it as a cleaner fuel, especially with the crash in NG prices.

Comment Re:Everyone's dirty. (Score 1) 122

And as always, who suffers? Regular property owners and renters. Middle class people who are priced out of the rental market because $2500 or more per month for a 1 bedroom apartment is obscene.

It could be argued that any house which isn't owner-occupied is a threat to the middle class, especially those just entering it. Investment properties introduce volatility into the housing market. During upswings, they compete for inventory, driving prices up. During downswings, they can flood markets as investors go under. Renters cause more frequent quality of life issues for neighbors than homeowners. Vacant shadow homes can cause blight.

If voters wanted to reduce that volatility, a tax on non-owner-occupied housing would go a long way. It would discourage both short-term and long-term rental properties, as well as vacant shadow properties. That might help keep both corporate and foreign investors from using the housing market as a place to park wealth.

Comment Re:A race to the bottom (Score 2) 467

A race to the bottom in prices is ... bad for product quality.

You get what you pay for. I noticed that Target has quietly replaced many national brands with their own cheaper brands. They're not as good. I find myself buying more products from Kroger, Costco, and Amazon as a result. If Wal-Mart follows the same path, I imagine that they'll turn off many middle-class shoppers who shop there today.

Comment Re:Was Only a Matter of Time (Score 1) 88

To be fair, they were selling service so low it really was cheaper than it should have been. It was only a matter of time before a rate hike of some sort would happen.

It seems as if T-Mobile USA is following the lead of other major US carriers in that they only want to directly sell to power users. Customers who aren't as profitable are being steered to their own discount brand (MetroPCS is owned by T-Mobile; likewise, Boost and Virgin Mobile are owned by Sprint while Cingular is owned by AT&T) or third party MVNO resellers like Page Plus, Straight Talk, Pure Talk, Ting, and the like.

If you want to continue to use the T-Mobile network but with a cheaper plan, there are plenty of ways to do it.

Comment Re:the un-unlimited plan (Score 1) 88

That sounds like Obama's misstatement that "you can keep your current health plan.

You could keep your insurance plan. The problem was that health care insurers tend to retire plans every couple years. So eventually you'd have to get a new one.

Cell phone companies have historically left grandfathered plans alone so long as the customer paid out of pocket for their phones. It was when you wanted to use their free phone upgrades that they made you dump your old plan.

As example, I kept my AT&T Wireless plan through both the Cingular and AT&T Mobility change-overs. I even kept my plan through the D-AMPS to GSM migration. I just had to buy my own phones. It wasn't until they started degrading service for users with old SIM cards did I finally change plans.

I've heard similar stories with T-Mobile and Verizon. It takes several years before they make it really uncomfortable for old plan subscribers.

Comment Re:Not sure what they're talking about (Score 1) 190

when it comes to darkness/dim lights, OLEDs are miles better. I'd have deeper blacks over higher brightness/wider gamut any time, please.

Same here. While the clarity and resolution of those Samsung SUHD QD panels were fantastic up close, it wasn't such a big deal when I moved as far back as I sit from my current TV. But even from that distance, I could tell the difference in black levels and color between it and the late model Panasonic VT60-series plasma I have at home and the LG OLED at my friend's house. For every scene that the Samsung looked better, there were two or three where the plasma and OLED look better.

Comment Re:I wouldn't have (Score 1) 125

I doubt that using 64 bit or 128 bit addresses would have increased the complexity for users that much. It just would have been a couple of extra characters to type in. IPX used 12 byte protocol addresses and it wasn't that big of a deal.

For developers, the biggest hassle would have been switching from a single dword to an array of some sort to hold the protocol address on 32 bit systems. No more simple register compares. But next to the logic for handling fragmentation/reassembly and IP options, it still would have been simple.

It would have been nice to have had something like IPSec transport mode from the start, but only if it were an optional component and if it didn't hard-code encryption or integrity algorithms. Also, for lightweight and low-end systems during the '80s and '90s, mandatory encryption support in the stack would have been overkill. Hobbyists would have preferred a smaller memory footprint.

I kinda wish that IPv4 would have made IP options a separate header, as they are in IPv6. Variable length IP headers are a little bit of a pain to work with.

Comment Re:Or the actual reason(s) (Score 2) 761

"The audio connector is more than 100 years old," Joswiak says. "It had its last big innovation about 50 years ago. You know what that was? They made it smaller. It hasn't been touched since then.

Not true. The 2.5mm plug was released, as were the OMTP and CTIA 4-ring jack standards.

I would have been fine with Apple moving from a 3.5mm to 2.5mm plug. Adapters are cheap and the plug is an industry standard.

Comment Re:if true, expect deaths and stories about them (Score 2) 47

I'd expect public outcry to be over more mundane issues, like noise, privacy, and operator trespass. Imagine living near a celeb and having to deal with the paparazzi flying drones. Or professional photographers flying drones over residential tourist attractions, like Lombard Street in SF. It would get incredibly annoying very quickly.

Comment Re:Would buy (Score 1) 135

There are a couple of cellular resellers who have basic plans with either no data or with very cheap data. The AT&T reseller I use has a $10/mo plan that includes 300 minutes, 50MB of data, and 50 MMS texts and a $15/mo plan that doubles it to 600/100MB/100MMS.

Look around. All four of the major providers in the U.S. resell their service. I believe that the big 4 in Canada do the same.

Comment Re:Is there a downside to upgrading to 10? (Score 1) 665

If you have older hardware, you might have difficulties getting the drivers to work.

One issue of note is the loss of the XDDM video driver subsystem that allowed video drivers from XP to be used on Vista and W7. Microsoft removed it from W8 and later OSes. So if a WDDM video driver was never released for your graphics chipset, you will be stuck with VESA SVGA video under W8 and W10.

There are still a number of Pentium 4M and Pentium M laptops in use where this is an issue. I have an older Thinkpad that I use when on vacation and that the kids use at home that has the i855GME chipset. I have a friend that still uses her Inspiron 5100 that has an AMD Radeon 7500M chip. Neither will ever see a Microsoft OS newer than W7.

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