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Comment re: The Fed and "new techniques" (Score 1) 224

Umm... please enlighten me what effective new strategies The Fed used to fix our last economic crisis?

One of the techniques they DID try was Section 128 of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, allowing the Federal Reserve to pay interest on “excess reserves” that U.S. banks park at the Fed. This allowed banks to just send their money in to The Fed and earn money on it, rather than loan any of it to actual customers who needed loans. In other words, great for the banks themselves but screwed over the general public.

Or how about the government debt carry trade, where The Fed lends gigantic piles of nearly interest-free cash to the big Wall Street banks, and in turn those banks use the money to buy up huge amounts of government debt?

Oh yeah, this stuff made Ben Bernanke a real American hero.....

Comment Re:ARMing servers. (Score 2) 54

It would be interesting since AMD cancelled their ARM efforts in the server space.

Really we should use AMD's market success as some sort of indicator? What about their 80x86 failures? Is this the market?

How's that? AMD had failures in the 80x86 market? Well, depends on what you call a failure.. If we just look at the CPU market......

With a few exceptions, I find the AMD x86 processor family a pretty good value for the money. (Your mileage may vary) Yea they tend to run hotter and take more power than the Intel offerings, but they perform well enough in most environments to be viable. They may not do as well in the mobile and Server spaces (due to power consumption being higher at the same processing capacity) but they do manage to soak up part of that market too. In a desktop, AMD is more than adequate and cheaper than similar performing Intel options. Don't get me started in the advantages of AMD over Intel in the overclocking world with their unlocked clock multipliers...

AMD staying afloat in the face of Intel's market share is a pretty amazing feat. It hasn't been easy being the distant second while keeping up the pressure on the #1 player but AMD has kept going for decades. I expect AMD to continue to be the distant second competitor, but being second doesn't mean you are a failure...

Then there is the whole GPU market.... AMD may be less of a player here and I don't recommend their GPU offerings, but that doesn't mean they are a failure here either.

Comment It's funny though... (Score 0) 23

THEY decide what hacks get the money and how much.... I'd like this kind of thing more if it was more of a community decision, where the company puts up some funds in escrow and then some independent evaluation or poll among the user community decides which hacks are worth the most. As it stands, even though Nintendo is asking for help from hackers, they hold all the cards AND the cash.

Nice PR ploy, but until they actually pay up for this "help" I'm choosing not to hack my way any closer to them than twice as far as I can throw a hacked device.

Comment Re:Wrong even if correct (Score 1) 224

Deflation is worse than inflation.

- nonsense, that's an unqualified statement. Deflation is not worse than inflation, it is only inconvenient for the debtors and of-course USA government is the biggest debtor out there, but in general USA federal, state, municipal governments are all debtors, also USA corporations and individual are debtors. Of-course now that USA is this unproductive and cannot feed itself without 500Billion/year trade deficit deflation is worse for USA that inflation because Americans want to write off the value of the debt without paying for it.

Deflation increases the value of your savings, thus discouraging you from working

- and yet in the 19th century, on the gold (not standard, just on the gold), USA economy was actually growing and became the most productive economy, turning USA into a net exporter nation from being an importer and an afterthought to the European countries.

Currencies are stable when the money supply expands at about the same rate as the productivity of the country's citizens

- nice try, Orwell, currencies are stable when their value does not fall over time.

This completely Orwellian nonsense redefinition of stability as of something that is losing value at a constant rate is complete garbage that the mainstream and government propaganda has pushed over the last half a century to produce completely economically illiterate population (such as I am observing here now).

The other reason why Orwell would be proud of you today is that you actually bought into the 'increasing productivity of citizens' from your nonsensical government. USA productivity is so ridiculously low that it cannot feed itself without a yearly injection of over 500 Billion USD, which has been more or less the trade deficit for at least 20 years now.

The whole reason we abandoned the gold standard is that it's really stupid to base your economy's health on the gamble that the amount of gold miners dug out of the ground each year would match the rate of growth of your country's GDP.

- Ha ha ha ha, you abandoned the gold standard because your expenses have grown so far beyond your ability to produce that you had to *default* on the dollar and completely get away from the principle of sound money so that you could print your debts away, not for any other reason whatsoever.

As to the amount of gold, it's absolutely irrelevant, the year to year global production increases the total amount of accessible gold by about 1.5%. If USA actually wanted a *STABLE* inflation rate, it could *EASILY* stick to the global gold mining rate.

As to the number of recessions per year, all of them were due to government manipulation of the money supply, introduction/going of off of fiat (talking about the 19th century), introduction of the Federal reserve in 1913 and allowing the Fed to monetize Treasury debt in 1917, printing crazy amounts of money to buy bad UK debt from France in the late 1920s, which caused the bubble that blew up and that recession was turned into depression by Hoover's and FDR's policies of more monetary expansion and other intervention policies.

1971 default simply removed the remaining pretence to any form of stable money and allowed the government to increase inflation to the levels that businesses found it no longer acceptable to try and work within that system and moved production out of the country (and of-course the government growth became unstoppable with the unlimited printing powers, so taxes, laws, regulations became unstoppable as well, normal businesses could not compete with government connected and sponsored ones).

As to Bitcoin, it acts purely as money and has 0 intrinsic value (it has no value beyond being money), so it cannot replace real money that has value whether it is used as money or not. However this does not mean that Bitcoin cannot be used as a very interesting speculative instrument.

Comment Re:Net worth is over $86 trillion!!! (Score 2) 224

Except that the actual USA debt is over 221 Trillion (counting federal, State, municipal, corporate and personal). You are completely underestimating the actual debt, that's first, secondly you are greatly overestimating the earning potential (revenue that can be collected). You are also completely underestimating the inflation level and employment, basically the numbers you are playing with are nonsensical. Of-course the value of USA as a land mass, all of the untapped resources, companies that can still be bought out, things of that nature certainly are valuable, yet what exactly are you proposing to do at this point? USA already mortgaged all of that out, a person can be evicted from his house, will USA population be evicted from the Continent?

Comment Re:Audio (Score 1) 71

Why is it that after so many years, BT audio still stutters and jumps sometimes?

Two reasons... #1 usually the devices are cheap, underpowered and cannot keep up with blue tooth's overall processing demands and do all the other glitzy things that attracted all the people who where willing to purchase the device.... And #2, Bluetooth is not very robust in it's interference resistance as implemented on most low end devices (see #1).

Comment re: telemetry issues (Score 0) 150

Honestly, yes - the phoning home / telemetry issues really are NOT huge concerns for us.
Our company doesn't have to be compliant with any of the multiple initialed government standards like HIPAA, FURPA, or what-not. So there's that.

But realistically, when your business standardizes on using the most popular operating system in the world (which I think is fair to say is Microsoft Windows), and you make an effort to secure your environment in other ways (a firewall in place, anti-virus software with central management and updates, spam filtering on all incoming corporate email, a corporate VPN provided for connecting back in to the office from remote sites, and ensuring all the computers and applications receive regular update patches), you should have a functional, relatively secure environment for people to work in.

The fact that Microsoft might be "spying" on what our users look at online, or keeping tabs on their Cortana search requests, or whatever else they're analyzing as the OS is used? That's something I think you wind up having to file under "part of the package deal of using Windows", under the circumstances. Is there any evidence Microsoft *ever* did anything malicious with user data of this sort that they gathered up? Are companies out there who were ruined when Microsoft distributed their intellectual property to competitors after sucking it down via standard mechanisms built into Windows itself? I'd have to say no.

I know there are many in the Linux community who find the whole thing completely unacceptable. But there are a lot of things people take issue with on principle when they're talking about their individual computers or devices and personal data. Things tend to be different for businesses, where corporate information is trusted, every day, with employees or even freelance workers who could theoretically leak all of it out to competitors or otherwise cause corporate espionage with it. You have to learn to put some level of trust in people (or other companies you partner with), and carry insurance to help mitigate financial problems when that trust is misplaced and things go wrong. Perhaps you even get the courts involved, if you can put together enough evidence of what happened to you after the fact.

It's a balancing act though.... How much value do you get from using a product, vs. potential risks or downsides of it helping itself to certain types of information that flow through it?

Comment This is just a negotiation tactic (Score 1) 180

This is just the RIAA trying to alter the licensing deal in place with U-Tube. Yea, they want a bigger piece of the pie and I don't blame them for asking. However, in all negotiations there comes a point where you have to realize that there are just some bargains that cannot be made or you risk killing the deal and giving up all your gains. RIAA seems to be dangerously close to this point to me.

So, if the RIAA wants to kill one of their golden egg laying geese by overloading U-Tube with license fees, it's their loss. Personally, I don't do much on U-Tube and the few videos I watch don't have RIAA licensed material in them so if they go bust trying to pay the RIAA their fees or actively remove any RIAA licensed material from their service, I won't miss U-Tube much. So if RIAA wants to shoot themselves in the foot, fine by me.

But I dare think that the RIAA is really just in the process of setting up the terms of their next license deal with U-Tube. They are asking for more than they expect to get from U-Tube in what is really just a standard negotiation tactic used in all sorts of situations, from bargaining over a $0.25 price at a garage sale though international trade deals.

Comment Re:STUPID (Score 1) 85

I stopped when the yuppies started using golf umbrellas that took up the entire sidewalk.

Ahhh, a fellow Seattleite? Are you freezing yer knobs off this morning too? It was 17 degrees out when I woke up. :(

I'm in Pennsylvania. Our Yuppies specialize in umbrellas, and baby carriages that are at least 4 feet across.

17 in Seattle? Damn, that's off. Every time I was there is wasn't hot, but it wasn't cold, either. Though there was the one time it was clear every day from September through November when I was there. It's low 40's here, not too bad for December.

Comment Re:I am going to say this just once. (Score 1) 180

That and desperate starving artists who signed really, really bad deals when they were young and unknown that won't let them easily break away from their publisher.

So perhaps the solution to this is to put some limits on what rights an artist can sign away? Sort of like Cali and their refusal to enforce employment non-compete contracts?

Comment Re:Net worth is over $86 trillion!!! (Score 1) 224

Huh? Why would you argue about our nation's "net worth" as having any relevance here?

In an example of personal debt and ownership, a person can get WAY over their head in debt, while still possessing quite a few things of value. If it gets out of control and they can't manage it any longer - they have the legal options to file for bankruptcy, including a Chapter 7 where most of the debts are simply washed away. Technically, they're *supposed* to itemize all of their possessions to determine their net worth, and then a court can order it be sold off or returned to lenders they owe money to. But realistically, we all know that almost never happens. People in personal bankruptcy are usually holding serious grudges against the entities that they borrowed from in the first place .... disputes over harassing collections efforts and unfair amounts of interest piled onto the unpaid portion of the debt they were struggling to pay back, etc. So they're going to make those assets temporarily disappear -- letting friends hang onto it for them for a while, liquidating some of it for cash, etc. etc.

When the NATION mismanages things by borrowing way too much, it can go bankrupt too -- but then EVERYONE suffers. The country's "net worth" involves all the businesses and natural resources here -- not just what government itself owns. It's NOT ok if government implodes the economy and then debtor nations come swooping in to claim what they're owed. They'll have to take it out of basic infrastructure and land. Maybe they'll just take over a portion of the country and run it their way?

Comment Re:Buy Apple. (Score 1) 159

Personally.... I don't agree.

However, it's not about any objection to Apple Watches, but to the idea behind them. Think about what you get with one of these and tell me it's worth what you pay for them. Except for the "coolness" factor, I don't really see where the things a smart watch can do are all that useful.

They tell time: but my analog watch does that, even when I don't have my phone around.

They can buzz and show you text messages or phone calls, but they have to be within Bluetooth range of your phone anyway, so you will have your phone on your person and it can buzz you too. I don't see the advantage of this feature.

I hear you can use your apple watch to originate a text, but for the life of me I cannot imagine it being worth the extra effort to text with an obviously clunky user interface over using that phone in your pocket.

Then there are the "health and Exercise" features like a pedometer to count your steps or monitoring your heart rate, but in both cases doing that kind of sensing is hard so it turns out to be of dubious accuracy and limited application. The pedometer function can be approximated on your phone with almost the same accuracy level, and the heart rate monitor is more of a "it's faster" or "slower" indicator that is of zero clinical use beyond that.

Finally there is the battery life problem. These wrist worn smart devices are of significantly limited size and weight. Doing all the "smart" stuff requires power and power requires batteries that are sizeable and of significant weight. This means that the more stuff your wrist device does, the more often you will have to take it off for a few hours and charge it. My standby analog watch can wind itself when I wear it and only comes off when I bathe or swim (because it's not water proof).

So if you want to have one for the wow isn't that cool factor, knock yourself out. However, some of us are not impressed with gadgets that really don't enhance our lives or serve a useful purpose.

Comment So you say, Solandri.... (Score 1) 224

But by abandoning the gold standard and not coming up with anything concrete to replace gold, we effectively said our currency is no longer tied to anything tangible of any value, so only faith in our leaders managing everything keeps it afloat.

IMO, that's proven to be a terrible fiscal policy -- as we saw with the Federal Reserve running out of techniques or ideas to control things during the last economic crash. Interest rates were dropped to near 0% and none of the decreases were having the expected/desired effect on the economy.

Gold may not be the right material to back our currency with (probably isn't for several reasons, including the high costs and requirements to store enough of it to back the amount of currency in circulation). But the concept makes a whole lot of sense. If you don't possess enough of the raw material to back additional currency with, you can't just go crazy printing off money to pay whatever debts it's politically convenient in the short term to run up.

IMO, Bitcoin was never really suitable as a primary form of currency for everyone to use on a daily basis. If nothing else, the technology is just too complicated to facilitate easy enough, fast enough transactions. The beauty in it is its potential for universal acceptance while preserving anonymity. (Cash has always allowed anonymous transactions, but with the requirement that you physically hand it over from person A to B - creating difficulties in keeping it anonymous. If anyone video records you doing the transaction, for example? Then it's no longer truly anonymous.) When it was still really new, you had lots of people just experimenting with it -- buying pizzas with it and so forth. But as it's matured, it's clearly become something best used only when you need the advantages it brings to the table.

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