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Comment Better than the Impossible Burger? (Score 1) 162

I see this more as competition for plant-based meat alternatives, such as the already-existing Impossible Burger. Both are new technology, and assuming both taste good, I think it will come down to price. At least for ground meat, I assuming lab growing a hunk of meat and then grinding it up will not be price competitive.

Comment Re:Tax Breaks for the Wealthy (Score 1) 160

Yeah diesel is pretty bad. Yet the life expectancy in the USA is lower than in the EU. So I guess it didn't turn out to be that bad.

Having high fuel taxes in the EU helps put a damper on fuel use.

A decent comparison can't really be done without adjusting for fuel consumption, population density, and other factors.

Comment Airports (Score 1) 47

My usage of it was exclusively in airports. Especially when traveling internationally, Skype Wifi was highly convenient for getting a new minutes of network access. No need to register with Boingo, Bongo, Dingo or whatever the hell operator the airport authority sold their wifi operation to. No need to sign up for "unlimited 7-day access" when I was only going to be in the country for an hour.

Comment Re:You're doing it extremely wrong (Score 2) 805

... and another 8% in sales taxes.

Not really fair to take that off the top, since sales tax won't impact grocery spending, utility spending, or savings.

Now you are easily down to 46K and you have not eaten or clothed yourself yet.
You can probably save enough to get 15K in savings.

$80/day for food? Seriously, how many foie gras McMuffin breakfasts can one person eat?

Comment Re:No surprise... (Score 1) 224

Gross margin doesn't include R&D expense. Operating margin is substantially lower (and lower than Apple's). I assume the difference is due to Intel being more vertically-integrated; their gross margin is higher than Apple's since Intel does their own manufacturing. But Intel spends a far higher amount on R&D (both as a percentage and absolute terms), so operating margin is lower.

Comment Re:Why "new employment"? (Score 1) 388

We are heading in that direction. Early 20th century economists predicted that due technological advancement, we'd all be working 15-hour weeks now. But that didn't happen.... partly because stuff was invented along the way that workers want, and they need money to get. Consumerism really took off post WWII.

But if you just consider basics (food, clothing, shelter), things have gotten a lot cheaper. Clothes are basically free now (not necessarily the ones you want). Considering the huge amount of food waste in the system, that's cheap or free too; lack of $0 distribution is a problem. And there are a lot of cheap places to live too, especially if you live at a higher-density like they did 100 years ago. And if everyone doesn't need to end up in NYC/SF for work. So we might in fact be able to have a very leisurely existence, if it wasn't for the consumerism and lifestyle inflation that's occurred for the last century.

Not that everyone will want a life like that. People will always want more than just the basics.

Comment Re:The Cxx that took my job should pay taxes (Score 3, Informative) 388

Generous with compensation != generous with hiring

It's true, the average American worker doesn't get as much vacation time as a European worker. Still, half of American workers don't use all of their vacation days as it is. But pay is higher. Perhaps American workers just value cash compensation over other benefits.

On the hiring front (which is the topic IIRC), hiring climate is substantially better in the US. Hiring/firing is easier, and labor mobility is higher. The unemployment rate is more volatile, but also historically lower.

Comment Tech dividends (Score 2) 284

All those tech companies with their famously large cash hoards should have massive investor lawsuits over dividends -- but they don't. Why?

Because it's more tax-efficient and potentially higher return for companies to reinvest their profits into new development or acquisition. Google's purchase of (and further investment in) Android provided much better use of cash than if they had paid out a $50M dividend, which the recipient would then owe tax on. Instead the shares became more valuable due to the cash generating machine getting bigger.

When tech companies start paying out a dividend, it's a sign or surrender: "hey, we don't know how to invest this.... you can have it." See Cisco, Oracle, Apple, etc.

Comment Re:iPhone cash cow is more important (Score 1) 230

Well, let's think about this one...which one would you rather manufacture?
- A high-margin computer, with high end components, requiring a lot of engineering effort to get right and keep supporting over an extended life cycle, or
- An even higher-margin, throwaway, replaced every 2 years, locked down device, on which you get a 30% cut of every single thing a user installs on it -- requiring lots less engineering since user interactions are artificially limited

If there was such a choice to be made, surely the latter. But Apple is generating $60B in cash flow annually, with $60B already in the bank. They shouldn't need to make a choice. GM is a much smaller company, but somehow they're able to make cars AND trucks.

Comment Twenty Billion (Score 1) 230

I dunno... it certainly seems that way, especially when you consider that Macs (or rather, OSX-running stuff) represent what, 10-20% of their revenue nowadays, when compared to iPads and etc?
I think it's part and parcel of Apple's response to usage patterns among the general public (not the geeks, but the general public), which makes more sense to them, at least financially.

10% of Apple's revenue is still 20 billion dollars. Not exactly a niche market (or maybe it's a really, really big niche).

Comment Re:Contra-Indicated. (Score 1) 263

If you divest, you are not a stockholder. You have no say in how the companies invest or spend their money. Much wiser to invest and help to steer the company by participating.

Divesting (and refusing to invest) affects demand. Dumping and refusing to buy oil stocks makes future share offerings less lucrative, and therefore increases the cost of doing business. Dumping and refusing to buy bonds of oil companies makes their cost of doing business increase (via paying a higher interest rate).

Will it work? Eh. It's kind of like a boycott, it depends on the participants and the duration.

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