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How Amazon's Ebook Subscriptions Are Changing the Writing Industry

EvolutionInAction Re:This guy is a (sic)moreon..... (250 comments)

We're talking about old model vs new, and what is better for the writers. Yes, in the new model authors would have to work on alternate money streams. That doesn't mean that the new model is better. Certainly you can understand why writers would be concerned.

The reason that this is not zero sum is because _the amount you are willing to spend on books changes as a function of how much you like to read._
If an author like Scalzi who talks about other people's books gets you to read more, there's a good chance that you will keep reading more. Instead of being willing to spend twenty bucks a year on books, you're willing to spend a hundred. The spending limit is higher, so there's more money for all authors to compete for!

Maybe an author could get you to spend the rest of your 'spending cap' on merch (although that strikes me as a terrible idea, given what happens to webcomics who try that model) but the actual money in the publishing game has gone down. And encouraging a reader to read somebody else results in less money to you. Zero sum.

And yes, 'the amount of money in the industry' is exactly what's at issue. Scalzi is worried about being able to make his living writing. That's pretty reasonable.

about a month ago
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How Amazon's Ebook Subscriptions Are Changing the Writing Industry

EvolutionInAction Re:This guy is a (sic)moreon..... (250 comments)

The pool of money that *could* be used to buy books is much larger than the pool of money that *is* used to buy books. So much so that it may as well be infinite. Scalzi points that out in TFA. So when people become avid readers, they buy MORE books. More of somebody else's, and more of yours.

In the Amazon model, people becoming avid readers is bad for you because it means that the pot of money - which doesn't grow when somebody reads more - is split more ways.

Can you see how different these models are? And why the first is considered not to be zero sum?

about a month ago
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How Amazon's Ebook Subscriptions Are Changing the Writing Industry

EvolutionInAction Re:This guy is a (sic)moreon..... (250 comments)

Um. Did you pay attention to my example?

If the person would have read one book which was yours, let's call that your 'base cut.'

If you encourage him to read, now he reads two of somebody else's books and two of yours. His contribution to the pool is the same, so you get half your base cut.

That's not necessarily how it will work, but it illustrates the possible problem - the pool doesn't grow when people read more books, and if they read books that are not yours your cut of the pool grows smaller. This is very much zero sum.

If the amount that is spent on books is not fixed, it's not zero sum in the normal sense of the term. Like I said, the entire universe is zero sum in the end. Yes there's some unknowable limit that could never be exceeded, but we're so far away from it that it doesn't really matter.

about a month ago
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How Amazon's Ebook Subscriptions Are Changing the Writing Industry

EvolutionInAction Re:This guy is a (sic)moreon..... (250 comments)

*headdesk* Scalzi is certainly smarter than you.

Readers read more. The more you get somebody to read, the more of their income they're probably going to spend on books. I've seen it, I've lived it. So encouraging people to read other, similar authors is good for you too! They'll probably buy more books in total, including yours. Maybe would have just bought one of yours. Now they buy three of somebody else's and two of yours. That's a win for you!

In the end, all of life is a zero sum game. But in context, publishing is _not_ zero sum because the amount spent on books is not fixed.

about a month ago
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Days After Shooting, Canada Proposes New Restrictions On and Offline

EvolutionInAction Re:Shot in the back (308 comments)

Missed it in the original comment, but it was also unloaded. Again, because we don't carry weapons without cause.

about 3 months ago
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Days After Shooting, Canada Proposes New Restrictions On and Offline

EvolutionInAction Re:Shot in the back (308 comments)

Good to know! It doesn't change my point, of course - long guns are terrible for shooting sprees. There's a reason police carry hand guns and soldiers carry shorter, specialized rifles.

about 3 months ago
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Days After Shooting, Canada Proposes New Restrictions On and Offline

EvolutionInAction Re:Shot in the back (308 comments)

You are a fucking idiot.
The weapon was an old, outdated weapon. It was meant to look fancy for tourist pictures. He was unarmed. Because here in canada, we don't carry guns without cause.

Notice how this idiot shooter was using a shotgun? That's a shit weapon for a shooting spree like this. THAT is the consequence of our gun control. Hunting weapons are fine and widespread. Human killing weapons are restricted.

about 3 months ago
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Apple's "Warrant Canary" Has Died

EvolutionInAction Re:There is no "almost impossible" (236 comments)

No. You don't know what you're talking about. See, OTPs use a random 'key' the same length as the data you're encrypting. It doesn't matter if there are known fields in the data, because matching those sections tells you nothing about any other section.

OTPs have a trivial proof that they provide perfect encryption as long as the key is never reused. They're just horribly impractical for everyday use.

about 4 months ago
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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

EvolutionInAction Re:illogical captain (937 comments)

Wow, amazing. So I guess we can throw out that whole field of Quantum Physics, then! Glad you're around to tell us that things which can only be described statistically are useless.

about 4 months ago
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Hal Finney, PGP and Bitcoin Pioneer, Dies At 58

EvolutionInAction Re:RIP, you cold cypherpunk (40 comments)

I imagine some of the cryo houses are 'scams' in that they don't believe revival is possible, some are true believers. Regardless, I don't think that 'revival' is going to be possible until somebody figures out a protocol for actually freezing the bodies without damage in the first place. What is quite possible is instead us figuring out how to make exceptionally fine brain scans before some or most of these companies go bust. It's much, much cheaper to maintain a massive redundant storage server farm than a cryonics warehouse.

Then the problem is emulating a human brain, but hell, at least we know where to start with that. Fixing a freezerburnt body seems a hell of a lot harder.

about 5 months ago
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Tesla and Panasonic Have Reached an Agreement On the Gigafactory

EvolutionInAction Re: What makes this a gigafactory? (95 comments)

That defeats the entire purpose of the SI. The prefixes are fixed. They have definite meaning, and that meaning is constant through all units. All the units have the same base. Any violation of that and we might as well be using Imperial.

So no, it wouldn't 'make more sense.' The SI did the only thing they could. They adopted the units, and even went out of their way to make new prefixes to cover the binary byte use cases.
Yeah, it means a lot of old documentation is now wrong. But there's only one way forward if we want a sane system of measures.

about 6 months ago
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Tesla and Panasonic Have Reached an Agreement On the Gigafactory

EvolutionInAction Re: What makes this a gigafactory? (95 comments)

So? They weren't SI units, but they used SI prefixes (wrongly.) Now the SI has made SI units based on the old ones that do conform. They even threw in some binary units for the times that they are actually useful. You're just pissed because it turns out people respect the SI more they do grumpy old computer geeks.

about 6 months ago
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Two South African Cancer Patients Receive 3D Printed Titanium Jaw Implants

EvolutionInAction Re:Hm. I wonder if the sintering can take a punch? (71 comments)

If I remember this correctly, sintering is actually one of the favoured manufacturing methods for implants. Something about how you can make the material surfaces porous enough for tissue to hold on to, which traditional machining simply cannot match.

I've no doubt that sintered parts have undergone failure testing and found acceptable. Do you know the level of regulation for a medical implant? It's insane.

about 6 months ago
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Nano-Pixels Hold Potential For Screens Far Denser Than Today's Best

EvolutionInAction Re: What's the point? (129 comments)

Read. He says that if you can have a light emitting grid below the object of interest you could do some neat tricks with illumination.

Of course, if you could actually get pixels much smaller than a wavelength, the big application would be true holography. You aren't drawing images at that point, you're drawing interference patterns.

about 6 months ago
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Four Weeks Without Soap Or Shampoo

EvolutionInAction Re:Does shower mean soap? (250 comments)

Or you've just stopped noticing the smell, which is the worrying theory.

I've actually stopped shampooing as well, though I also have to keep my hair buzzed short. It's the only thing I've found to reduce the oil and irritation. I'm far too aware of BO to stop using soap, though...

about 8 months ago
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Did Mozilla Have No Choice But To Add DRM To Firefox?

EvolutionInAction Re:Users make the final decision ... (406 comments)

Arguing with several people in the same thread is annoying.

I am not arguing against the security measures that Mozilla is putting in place. Those are good! I'm arguing against the violation of one of the principles that the browser was launched on. Maybe it is "bowing to reality" but I honestly don't care about that. Stick to your guns, or what's the difference between you and google's chrome?

about 8 months ago
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Did Mozilla Have No Choice But To Add DRM To Firefox?

EvolutionInAction Re:Users make the final decision ... (406 comments)

Because plugins can do lots of things. They might even be open source! EME implementation has only one use - adding closed source, restrictive DRM.

about 8 months ago
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Did Mozilla Have No Choice But To Add DRM To Firefox?

EvolutionInAction Re:Users make the final decision ... (406 comments)

This is the inclusion of closed source, liberty restricting software in a product that touts its open source, free and open internet stance. Not including software that restricts your freedoms is not restricting your freedom in any way. You are free to use another program to get that closed content. You are free to write a plugin that implements EME.

And yeah, I'm still free to chop out the cruft from firefox. Yay, I guess. What's wrong about this is that Mozilla is bowing to external pressure to break its principles.

about 8 months ago
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Robbery Suspect Tracked By GPS and Killed

EvolutionInAction Re:ANOTHER DEAD BODY! SWEET JUSTICE! (450 comments)

I'm kinda confused here. You say that killing a cop is a terrible idea because you get 500 police with guns coming to get you, but if the patrolman doesn't have a gun he'll get shot because he's unarmed?

It's still a bad idea to kill the cop! It's not like NONE of the police have guns, just the patrolmen. So if you shoot at that guy you're going to get taken down hard, if you just run maybe you'll get away.

about 8 months ago
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Robbery Suspect Tracked By GPS and Killed

EvolutionInAction Re:ANOTHER DEAD BODY! SWEET JUSTICE! (450 comments)

A) Bullshit. There are lots of ways to deal with somebody who's got a gun.
B) Did you read what I wrote? The thought is that if your patrolmen are not armed, fewer criminals will bother with guns.

about 8 months ago

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