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2 US Senators Propose 12-Cent Gas Tax Increase

AdamThor Re:Good! (619 comments)

"At this stage the tax should be on the odometer; read and applied when you renew your insurance."

I heartily agree! But you know they're just dying to mandate GPS in your car so they can track you... for taxation.

I'm down with paying by the odometer (maybe by withholding as income tax, so you don't get a big hit when the odo gets read), but I worry that the government would take the next step to GPS.

about a month and a half ago
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Are US Hybrid Sales Peaking Already?

AdamThor Re:Why would I buy a Prius (377 comments)

"What can I say, I like fast cars. And electrics get you efficiency and torque."

Have you seen any of the electric motorbikes? They are starting to get good reviews, and that's from a "fun" standpoint rather than a "green" one.

See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

about a month and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Anti-Theft Products For the Over-Equipped Household?

AdamThor Re:Don't. (408 comments)

In much the same way as a security system, be it alarms or cameras: by making it easier for the police to apprehend the criminal.

Neither of these things actually prevents someone from kicking down your door while you're away and grabbing something and running away with it.

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Anti-Theft Products For the Over-Equipped Household?

AdamThor Re:Don't. (408 comments)

Copying down serial #'s for your equipment is the action nobody ever takes. It's the low-hanging-fruit when it comes to theft preparedness.

about 2 months ago
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Wretched Ride: PS4 Driveclub Game Rental Tied To Paid Subscription

AdamThor Re:Hey remember that E3 promo? (93 comments)

Oh, uh, you weren't actually expecting anyone to actually back away from a model like this, were you?

about 3 months ago
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Facebook Data Miner Will Shock You

AdamThor Re:And this is why.... (164 comments)

Adblock plus has a stopper for those things. The list to subscribe to is called "Antisocial".

about 3 months ago
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Minecraft Creator Halts Plans For Oculus Version Following Facebook Acquisition

AdamThor Re:Unsurprising ... (300 comments)

"My immediate reaction to seeing Facebook was buying it was "well, there goes some promising technology"."

Everyone still loves the VR idea though. I think Notch and all the others will just be looking for the runner up product. Which all the Me-To folks are working on. Sony and Xbox are already on that train, I understand. Hopefully there will be someone to sell me one without a walled garden that they're trying to push.

How much IP is there around the oculus? I understood the rift to be mostly an implementation of better / newer technology, not so much new invention, but I could be off. How hard will it be for others to pick up the baton?

about 4 months ago
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Facebook Buying Oculus VR For $2 Billion

AdamThor Re:Kickstarter is not an investment (535 comments)

"It what sense is this like being killed off?"

Oculus wanted to sell you a monitor. It's in 3D, it straps to your face, it tracks your head, it does a bunch of way-cool stuff, but fundamentally it's just a screen.

Facebook doesn't want to sell you a screen. Or a keyboard, or a THING. They want to sell you an ECOSYSTEM. They want you to provide them with your data. They want you to be their product. Their continuing revenue stream.

I just want the screen.

about 4 months ago
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Bringing Speed Reading To the Web

AdamThor Feature Request (47 comments)

Dictionary of white listed words 6th grade reading level (to be displayed at max speed, the rest at a settable sub-speed)
Long words broken up by syllable
Dead-man switch - hold down to keep reading release to pause and display Fwd and Rew

about 5 months ago
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How Ireland Got Apple's $9 Billion Australian Profit

AdamThor Re:The norm: we NEED to shame them. (288 comments)

Yeah, but comparing it to tariffs against other _countries_ isn't accurate. It would be a tariff against a _company_. So would it accelerate into some sort of trade war? I'm not enough of an economist to say for sure, but it's not like Apple could start taxing American products in retaliation...

about 5 months ago
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How Ireland Got Apple's $9 Billion Australian Profit

AdamThor Re:The norm: we NEED to shame them. (288 comments)

It is true that companies will demand things of the government, and threaten to leave if they don't get them. And it seems like governments are routinely screwed in this fashion.

Governments need to respond with import duties on the products of companies like this.

A trade war with another country is destructive and expensive, and quickly tangles up uninvolved parties. But a set of punitive taxes on the output of a company is targeted. Government needs a stick to hold over the head of multinational corporations.

about 5 months ago
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Cops Say NDA Kept Them from Notifying Courts About Cell Phone Tracking Gadget

AdamThor Re:Abjectly false argument (235 comments)

"On the issue of using the "controversial device" to track the criminal in this case, I'm not so ready to jump on the "police broke the law" bandwagon."

So I don't know about actually using the device, I see your logic here. But isn't there a requirement that evidence be disclosed to the accused? I think that's the issue here.

Let us strive to be correct in our outrage...

about 5 months ago
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GCHQ Intercepted Webcam Images of Millions of Yahoo Users

AdamThor Re:this isn't the only one (137 comments)

so the punishment for being a perv is that you get to be a voyeur as well?

about 5 months ago
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Report: Space Elevators Are Feasible

AdamThor Re:Spoiler for "Red Mars" by Kim Stanley Robinson (374 comments)

Why would the middle part burn up? Asteroids and satellites burn up because they have large velocities relative to earth surface and atmosphere. The space elevator specifically does not. It could fall at terminal velocity, but lots of things do that without catching fire. There's that dude that sky-dove from near orbit, right? He even had thin atmosphere to go through to get going good and fast, but no flames.

about 5 months ago
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Report: Space Elevators Are Feasible

AdamThor Re:weight of elevator is pulling up, not pushing d (374 comments)

In reality, you'd want an outward force a full order of magnitude higher than the cargo capacity.

The number of people talking about the issue of balancing the elevator makes me think perhaps I have misunderstood. I figure I'd probably put a counterweight mass on a climber above geostationary. Geostationary is where things balance, right? The mass above geostationary (at angular velocity of 360 deg / day) wants to fly away, and it holds up the ribbon. Want to put a heavy load on the ribbon bottom? Send a signal to have the counterweight climb further up (which, past geostationary, feels like down to it, right?), increasing the amount it pulls up. Perhaps the distance necessary to apply this effect is substantial, but heck we're already going to geostationary, right?

And from a message further up:
The base could easily be placed on a barge in the middle of the ocean. In fact, that's just about ideal; it can move around relatively easily...

Well, you've basically got a pendulum that is 35,000+ Km long. That's going to be a pretty long period to make it do anything, I bet. Maybe easier would be to just detach it from your barge and roll it up into the sky at the balance point if you need to get out of the way of some terrestrial event.

about 5 months ago
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Government Secrecy Spurs $4 Million Lawsuit Over Simple 'No Fly' List Error

AdamThor Re:Hubris and Pride (239 comments)

" ...and some incompetent idiot who didn't bother checking."

Not far into the comments and I've already seen this kind of language applied to whoever committed the original error. And not to bum on you -- it's natural to be irritated at the source of a problem. This kind of attitude, however, is what makes it difficult to retract a mistake. The agent may be good, competent, smart, but errors still happen.

Error handling is the issue here, not error commission.

about 6 months ago

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