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Comment It WOULD be wise, but it's not. (Score 1) 323

It is very wise to anticipate the need and establish and test it before it must become a mainstream standard.

But they're not doing that. This is a means-tested, graduated scale welfare mechanism.

This is not UBI, it doesn't even vaguely resemble UBI, and as a test of UBI, it's worthless, because its results are completely unrelated. To any degree the results are used to make any decisions at all about actual UBI, the decisions will be nonsensical. Garbage in, garbage out.

Comment yeah, no (Score 1) 323

If it's my taxes being used to conduct this experiment, it damned well IS my business.

Not in a republic, it's not. If it's anyone's business, it's that of your representative. You know, the one you had/have a fractional millionth of an effect in selecting, and essentially none in influencing — that power has been purchased by the corporations.

Comment Sex Robots (Score 1) 323

I don't know how much an anatomically functional interactive sexbot will cost, but it will likely be way cheaper than alimony and child support, and it won't get headaches. If it has a "mute" button and can make sandwiches, that is even better.

True story:

My SO, Deb, and I were laying about in bed one lazy afternoon; she seemed to be dozing lightly.

Me: "Hey, baby?"
Her: "Mmmm?"

Me: "When {unspoken:sex} robots come out, can we get a French maid?"
She: "Sure."
 
...a few seconds pass...

She: "We'll call him 'Pierre.'"

I made a photo-toon of this

Comment Re:Fluid type manipulation with unions (Score 1) 374

Unions aren't the least bit obscure: they do very specific things, and just as you tell them to. It's a matter of skill. Not obscurity.

For instance, in my 6809 emulation, with a register that is sometimes independent 8-bit and sometimes single 16-bit (the 8-bit A and B registers become the 16-bit D register, depending on the instruction in play), a union is just the thing. It does exactly what is needed, when needed, and not otherwise.

Comment Re:Pilots don't work (Score 1) 323

Will a child growing up in a UBI household have a different attitude towards the need to get a job or attend school? Is there even any point in getting an education if you know that the state will provide everything - and that there probably won't be any jobs for you anyway?

Well we have research on welfare clients here in Norway indicates it might be "inheritable", but not massively so. So I think it would be more "as a child in an UBI society..." and as for the latter I assume basic will mean quite basic. Here in Norway you have a basic guarantee (sosialstønad) if you are a legal resident and have no savings or other means to support yourself, for singles it's 5950 NOK + housing which in USD is about $700/month, but since Norway is more expensive it's effectively $500/month. And housing can easily mean a 100 sqft room with shared kitchen and bathroom facilities.

Essentially if you take your basic needs like food, clothes, personal care, a monthly card for public transportation and misc. household articles the budget is nearly spent. You can afford a microwave, cellphone, a TV, a crap PC and that's it. You're not going to any pubs, cafes, restaurants, concerts, cinemas or theaters. You don't have a car. You're not going on any vacations. You exist comfortably, if all you want is a $15/month WoW subscription. Most people want a little more in life...

Comment Bad data from poor implementation (Score 3, Interesting) 323

With that said, if they do this pilot correctly it will yield very interesting data.

I very much doubt it will because it is implemented in a way which directly undermines the arguments for universal basic income which is normally taken to mean that everyone gets a fixed income regardless of circumstances. Instead this project reduces that income at the rate of $1 for every $2 earned. Unlike the real deal this provides a reasonably strong motivation NOT to take low paying jobs since you only get a benefit of half the wage you earn. It also means that you now have to start means testing people to see how much they earn which requires bureaucracy and officials and incurs expense.

The whole point of basic income is to cut the administration expense because everyone gets it regardless while also preventing the disincentive to work of typical unemployment schemes by clawing back money when people get even a low paying job. The Ontario scheme fails to achieve either aim and so seems unlikely to work or provide any data about whether such type of schemes could work.

Government

Ontario Launches Universal Basic Income Pilot (www.cbc.ca) 323

Reader epiphani writes: The Ontario Government will pilot universal basic income in a $50M program supporting 4,000 households over a 3 year period. While Slashdot has vigorously debated universal basic income in the past, and even Elon Musk has predicted it's necessity, experts continue to debate and gather data on the approach in the face of increasing automation. Ontario's plan will study three communities over three years, with participants receiving up to $17,000 annually if single, and $24,000 for families.

Comment Re:Flying Law Mower (Score 1) 142

I'm with you. You and I are not their target market. But keeping up the banter makes people open up their investment wallets and drool. Look at the stupid juicer (and so many, many more) if you had questions about stupid money looking for an amplification spot marked X.

There'll be a trunk. Spots in parking lots. After all, these folks have money to spend, viz their expensive transportation. People buy many expensive transportation devices that you see every day on your way to work. Fizzle? Nope. Gonna happen, just like bad weather and more plutocracy. You can't fight the weather, and you need lots of money to either join plutocracy or fight it.

My flying friends have their own planes, Lambos in the garage, and lots of money to spend on toys. Better toy than yours?- all the better. Yes, they're licensed pilots with lots of hours under their belts and they're safe pilots as well, having some sense of survival instinct. But when you moan about the ten hour trip to X, they'll say: I can get there in four in my (Cessna, Beech, etc.).

From Watsonville to Napa, there are dozens of general aviation airports to suit this fancy. Your tax dollars at work. Moreover, there are already flying neighborhoods built around private strips. These are people that fly and commute, rather than sit on 101 trying not to look at their texts.

Me, I live in a small town and use a VPN, so it doesn't matter to me at all. I watch SillyCon Valley and muse over capitalism gone amok.

Comment Re:Flying Law Mower (Score 1) 142

You're an altruist, and good on you for being one, seriously.

Unfortunately, idiots exist, and you cannot null them, only mitigate them and threaten them with ugly consequences for being idiots. The "hold my beer..." culture cannot be eradicated and more arrive every moment. So yes, we have regulations, punishments, licensing, insurance, and sadly, many personal injury lawyers.

Money and insurance are not obstacles to the fabulously wealthy and banks love to loan funds on such seeming trivialities. This, too, is a reality. I'm not in favor of it, just stating the facts. Testosterone rules until we find a way to rechannel testosterone to something more productive. Convenience in LA or SF where traffic is stupefyingly ugly is a real attraction. The mine's-bigger-than-yours mentality will fuel this, like it or not. I don't like it, but they didn't ask me.

And yes, I don't see personal drones arriving in quantity any time soon, thankfully. But they'll arrive. And sadly, I know two guys that will do whatever the drill is to purchase one and buzz the neighborhood. And like earlier private pilots, some of them will die and take people out doing so. History repeats itself, and so far the over-testosteroned are winning.

Comment Re:FSF = not practical (Score 2) 152

When he started there was no such thing as an entire operating system of free software and no hardware you could run it on. This exists today - it didn't then. It's not as readily and easily available as it should be - but it exists. And, as he rightfully pointed out, if he had compromised the ideal of that existing - it would still not exist at all. It only exists because he never settled for less than that.

Well evil tounges would suggest that without Linus we'd still be waiting on GNU/Hurd. GCC forked off and became ECGS. "Linux libc" forked away from glibc and was only later "gnu-ified" again like ECGS. The rest the FSF made seems mostly to be small utilities, for sure having a GNU/free ls, awk, sed, grep etc. is important but hardly the showstopper. His one (admittedly huge) crowning achievement was writing the GPL, but most the projects seemed to refuse his leadership.

And even then the adoption by some of the core players seemed to be more by chance than ideological success, like Linus primarily wanted to see what other developers were doing to learn so he could run it on his box. User freedom was never a big deal for him nor most other Linux kernel core developers, which is why the GPLv3 was met with a "meh". X11 and Wayland doesn't use the GPL. Apache isn't using the GPL. Android isn't using the GPL except the kernel. It is popular? Yes. Is it the only commonly used open source license? Very far from it.

According to Black Duck GPLv3 + LGPLv3 + Affero GPL = ~10% of all projects and GPLv2 + LGPLv2 ~20% so most projects haven't really been following Stallman since 2007. And that's not counting the non-GPL licenses, my impression is that the Apache license has gained a lot of popularity particularly with corporations like Google (Android), Apple (Swift) and Microsoft (ASP.Net). The kernel is the one project that seems to get away with copyleft because you can run any userspace on top. And because it doesn't really crack down on shims and driver blobs.

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