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Comments

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Bidding At FCC TV Spectrum Auction May Be Restricted For Large Carriers

Areyoukiddingme Re:Government picking favorites (91 comments)

(In reference to Verizon's purchase of the 700mhz block A spectrum that they never got around to using)

They sold it to T-Mobile for $2.365 billion in January 2014.

2 days ago
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Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

Areyoukiddingme Re:Please automate accounting more! (416 comments)

It isn't solved I assure you. EDI is useful but not easy or simple enough to be universally implemented.

I meant in terms of the message formats, not in terms of the existing EDI "solutions" (if a vendor says "solution" at you, run the other way). That's how to provide the requisite interoperability with existing EDI systems. Speak their language. That's specifically one of the wheels I wouldn't want to reinvent. No sense trying to design a whole new protocol when there are existing standards (even if they are the limp, gated standards everybody in the world except computer engineers seems to favor).

The idea would be to write an EDI extension for QuickBooks. Something light weight and as unobtrusive as possible that automatically interacts with an email address to send and receive data in EDI format while maintaining audit trails of incoming and outgoing messages and providing interfaces to compose and send outbound EDI data automatically assembled from QuickBooks as well as display inbound data, confirm the details with a user, and automatically integrate the results in QuickBooks. I saw some crap about how EDI is better thought of as a system than a data format, and that's all well and good, but I'm talking about minimizing the "system" part and enabling the data format.

I think we can safely assume that Intuit doesn't have a brain in their skull, so it will have to be done by a third party. More to the point, even if they did, it would probably end up being one of these horrific "solutions" that quickly becomes a process disaster. Better that someone else does it who isn't burdened with their idiot corporate culture.

3 days ago
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Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

Areyoukiddingme Re:Please automate accounting more! (416 comments)

Yep! Total chicken and egg problem though perhaps not an unsolvable one. You'd basically have to make something that is easy to start and easy to use and falls back gracefully for customers not using it yet. Plug in to popular accounting software packages and maybe a web interchange.

The standardized format part appears to be a solved problem. The Wikipedia article on EDI is rather sparse, but the standards evidently do exist. Rather too many of them, I'd say. Which one is actually likely to be useful for the majority of people? I can't tell from the article. (And naturally there's a gate-keeping committee who thinks they can charge $850 for ASCX12. What a joke.)

Extensions to QuickBooks does seem like the logical route to take. However, I personally have no interest in running a web interchange, especially since EDI via email and FTP are standardized. Given my allergy to "screw the customer as hard as possible" business models, I'd sooner write a system that takes advantage of communication systems businesses already have, rather than try to collect extra.

3 days ago
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Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

Areyoukiddingme Re:Please automate accounting more! (416 comments)

One of my clients continues to use QB Pro 2000 to this day.

That's a large part of the problem that I left unspoken. Finding an SDK for current versions is difficult enough, but a great many people refuse to play the upgrade game and are running one of the many many prior versions. Supporting enough of them to be useful makes the problem a great deal harder, especially when the upgrade treadmill means the vendors are intentionally eliminating access to SDKs for older versions.

3 days ago
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Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

Areyoukiddingme Re:Please automate accounting more! (416 comments)

Want to make a fortune? Come up with an EDI type system that doesn't cost an arm and leg and allows businesses to exchange invoices, delivery information, order acknowledgements, etc automatically between businesses of any size and that integrates with existing accounting systems. Start with Quickbooks and Sage.

I want to make a fortune, but when I looked, I found all links to PeachTree's SDK are dead.

And that right there is the reason why what you want doesn't exist and won't exist. The two businesses that own the accounting market for small and medium businesses are focused exclusively on maintaining an "upgrade" treadmill and milking you for all the money they can squeeze out of you. Making your job more efficient is not even an interest, let alone a priority.

I might be interested in adding EDI read and write capabilities to something like PostBooks (if it doesn't already have it), but Intuit and Sage's business models are toxic. I have no interest in chasing after annual cosmetic upgrades and squeezing through the tiny keyholes they set up around your data.

4 days ago
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Climate Scientist: Climate Engineering Might Be the Answer To Warming

Areyoukiddingme Re:The fossil fuel "subsidies" are a lie. (341 comments)

The IMF opinion is indeed nonsensical, but fossil fuels are subsidized.

In 2009:

        Tenaska's Taylorville Energy Center – loan coverage $2.6 billion for a 730 MW coal-fired IGCC with CCS.
        Leucadia's Indiana Gasification SNG project – loan coverage of $1.6 billion to produce Substitute Natural Gas (syngas) from coal for sale to customers in Indiana, with proposed carbon capture for enhanced oil recovery.
        Leucadia's Mississippi Gasification SNG project – loan coverage of $1.689 billion to produce syngas from petroleum coke feedstock, for sale to electric utilities in the region, with proposed carbon capture for enhanced oil recovery.

Subsidies identical to the type received by Tesla and Solyndra both.

In July 2013, the US Department of Energy made available $8 billion in loan guarantees to the fossil fuel industry, again, the identical type of subsidy received by Tesla. For an industry that has been recording record profits for the past 6 years.

So either stop claiming Solyndra received a subsidy or stop claiming fossil fuel industries don't receive any. You can't have it both ways.

5 days ago
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Climate Scientist: Climate Engineering Might Be the Answer To Warming

Areyoukiddingme Re:Climate engineering? (341 comments)

Why do so many people confuse weather with climate?

Because climate IS weather? It's just lots of it averaged over time. This winter is a valid data point that will drag down the average temperature for the decade, and that statistical behavior is perfectly acceptable. What did you think you were measuring, anyway? Tree rings?

5 days ago
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Mathematicians Use Mossberg 500 Pump-Action Shotgun To Calculate Pi

Areyoukiddingme Re:2 tips for preppers (307 comments)

First, pack at least couple solar powered calculators. You can get cheap scientific calculators at the dollar store.

The dollar store? My Ti-34 (that I still use) cost $74 you insensitive clod! (And it has pi to 9 decimal places as a built-in constant.)

5 days ago
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Can You Buy a License To Speed In California?

Areyoukiddingme Re:So you CAN buy a license to speed (325 comments)

... or protect them from the multi-million$ personal injury lawsuit from the impacted driver.

For once, an appropriate use of the marketing-monkey trick of substituting "impact" for "affect".

about a week ago
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Navy Debuts New Railgun That Launches Shells at Mach 7

Areyoukiddingme Re:Power? (630 comments)

You need massive banks of capacitors to store and then discharge that energy very rapidly. There is going to be a lot of heat generated. The lifetime of the capacitors and heat dissipation ability are probably the limiting factors.

On the plus side, you're floating on top of a very large, very agreeable heat sink.

about two weeks ago
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Mozilla CEO Firestorm Likely Violated California Law

Areyoukiddingme Re:Fuck him and the rest of the Republicans (1112 comments)

Political litmus tests for employment have been a big no-no for a damn good reason.

Sure. In 9 states. In the other 41, it's legal. In Washington, California, Colorado, Michigan, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Louisiana, and Florida it's illegal to fire someone for political activity or for not voting for your employer's preferred candidate, or for belonging to a particular party (one or more of those protections, depending on the state).

The linked blog post is by an employment attorney, so it's reasonably sure to be correct. Some states are more specific than others about what specific political activity can not be used to justify firing. Some extend protection to all activity. Others are specific only to voting. Your Republican in South Carolina example is perfectly legal.

about two weeks ago
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OpenSSL Bug Allows Attackers To Read Memory In 64k Chunks

Areyoukiddingme Yes!!! (303 comments)

*air-punch*

I knew procrastinating Debian upgrades for most of a decade would pay off! I am VINDICATED!

about two weeks ago
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App Developers, It's Time For a Reality Check

Areyoukiddingme Re:I went for it. (161 comments)

You didn't go for anything, you eyed it and carefully prodded it from a distance with a stick.

You think? I spent three years without a job, writing code 10 to 12 hours a day on weekdays and 2-4 hours a day on weekends. I spent my entire (liquid) life savings staying current on that mortgage and paying for utilities and food. I had $600 left in the bank when my first paycheck at my new job arrived. I don't know what your definition of "went for it" is, but that should be good enough for anyone.

(Actually I spent 34 months without a job, if you want to be excruciatingly precise.)

about two weeks ago
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App Developers, It's Time For a Reality Check

Areyoukiddingme Re:I went for it. (161 comments)

I now have almost $150,000 in debt, ruined credit, and no job prospects. What should I have done different?

I went for it.

I failed.

I have no debt other than the mortgage I started with, excellent credit, and a good job. What did I do differently?

I gave up when the money ran out and went back to work for The Man, rather than throw good money after bad. Trying to launch a startup is a gamble and should be treated precisely the same way. Only use money you can afford to lose and do not spend one thin dime of money you don't have trying to "win it all back" if you hit bottom. Quit and go home.

Too late for you, but for other people thinking about it, this can't be repeated enough.

about two weeks ago
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Interviews: J. Michael Straczynski Answers Your Questions

Areyoukiddingme Re:Lensman Series (67 comments)

Women are largely window dressings except for one major character who is ignored or used as a damsel in distress as much as possible.

Clarissa MacDougall was eventually upgraded to an actual character. By the time Children of the Lens came around, she was a mental match for her husband. "Doc" Smith was one of several Golden Age writers who actually moved with the times. The Golden Age faded, but at least the survivors lost some of their prejudices.

about two weeks ago
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Amazon Launches Android-Powered 'Fire TV' For Streaming and Gaming

Areyoukiddingme Just get a CuBox-i (180 comments)

Just get a CuBox-i. 2"x2"x2" cube, available in three editions. The quad-core with 2 GB of RAM version that's equivalent to this Amazon thing is $130 and it has a microSD card slot, so you can fill it with as much or as little flash memory as you feel like paying for. I run Android on mine, but it also boots any of several different Linux distributions. It doesn't come with a remote or a game controller, but it has USB, and the quad-core version has BlueTooth. All versions have an IR receiver. No Amazon prime subscription needed, no custom manufacturer-mangled smart TV version of Android required, and it has access to the Google Play store.

Small business that doesn't have a "tie the world to our services" agenda can still deliver a product designed for customers, rather than consumers.

about two weeks ago
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Subversion Project Migrates To Git

Areyoukiddingme Re:And Git Migrates to CVS... (162 comments)

Somebody actually remembers that pine could read news, not just email. Talk about obscure...

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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26" FED volume production in 2009?

Areyoukiddingme Areyoukiddingme writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Areyoukiddingme (1289470) writes "Field Emission Technologies of Japan claims they will begin volume production of a 26" FED at the end of 2009.

To help it meet the mass-production deadline in late 2009, FE Technologies will acquire Pioneer's Kagoshima plant by the end of 2008. The Japanese company will invest $183 million to $274 million (20 to 30 billion yen) in manufacturing equipment.

...

The initial application for FE Technologies' 26-inch FED panels will be as "master" monitors, used by TV broadcasters to check picture quality.

No word on price, but you can bet the answer is "if you have to ask, you can't afford one." As a Sony spin-off, they should have some legal cover from the patent trolls. Could full color full size FEDs finally escape the vaporware tag?"
Link to Original Source

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