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Comments

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OKCupid Warns Off Mozilla Firefox Users Over Gay Rights

FooAtWFU I have a better next step. (1482 comments)

OKCupid's next step should be a button all users see on login: "Do you support the marriage-equality movement?" [yes/no]. If you click No it deletes your account.

In for a penny, in for a pound, right?

about two weeks ago
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Minecraft Creator Halts Plans For Oculus Version Following Facebook Acquisition

FooAtWFU Re:Unsurprising ... (300 comments)

No, it's not about money. It's about fulfilling his adolescent fantasies of being the guy who programs a lame facebook-branded Second Life knockoff. I MEAN, programming the Metaverse from Snow Crash.

(Sorry, dropped out of the fantasy too early there.)

about three weeks ago
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Meat Makes Our Planet Thirsty

FooAtWFU Re:Interesting Math (like there's another variety) (545 comments)

Good luck trying to convince people to not have children, especially the Bible Belt people who literally believe it's their God-given right to litter the Earth with their offspring.

It's not just the Bible Belt -- the UN Fundamental Declaration of Human Rights (article 16) declares that "men and women of full age ... have the right to marry and to found a family." It's pretty totalitarian to suggest otherwise... which you really should try to be more aware of, lest it damage your pitch...

about a month ago
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Using Handheld Phone GPS While Driving Is Legal In California

FooAtWFU Re:Dumb ruling (142 comments)

Dumb ruling, or accurate ruling on a dumb law?

about a month and a half ago
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Apple Urges Arizona Governor To Veto Anti-Gay Legislation

FooAtWFU Re:First blacks, (917 comments)

It is no longer strictly a private affair. However, if the government decides to make certain laws that substantially burden some individual's ability to exercise his religion, such as by limiting the conditions under which he may operate a business, then those laws may be found unconstitutional -- something about "congress shall make no law" blah blah blah.

about 2 months ago
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Apple Urges Arizona Governor To Veto Anti-Gay Legislation

FooAtWFU Re:First blacks, (917 comments)

I think it's not as simple as that and we're being confused by the proximate issue. I know that a typical case is "is it okay for a business run by some fundamentalist Christians allowed to refuse service to bake cakes or provide flower arrangements a gay wedding." Let's use different groups here to make the issues clearer. Is it okay for an event-planning business run by a Buddhist to refuse service to plan a KKK rally? To refuse to bake a cake that says [insert offensive thing a KKK member might want on a cake here]? How about just to refuse to provide services to a KKK member? Refuse to provide sale of goods?

If the answer is "no" to the Christian baker's refusals and "yes" to the KKK rally refusal, what are the differences between these hypothetical situations? If relevant, what are the differences between the rally and the general sale of goods? What are the differences between these hypothetical situations and the law(s) being proposed?

about 2 months ago
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These Are the Companies the FAA Has Sent notices To For Using Drones

FooAtWFU I don't care, I'm still free. (136 comments)

You can't take the sky from me.

about 2 months ago
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Supreme Court To Hear Aereo Case

FooAtWFU This isn't about advertising. (211 comments)

The thing is, broadcasters aren't bringing this case over lost advertising revenue. And they're not bringing it over increasing the size of the broadcast area.

They're bringing this case because if Aereo-like services lets people access the broadcasts within the broadcast area in more convenient ways, that means the broadcasters can't make as much money from selling more-convenient access to their content (e.g. by charging cable-TV retransmission fees, or making a deal with Time-Warner Cable to let subscribers visit special subscriber-only webpages or install subscriber-only apps to stream content).

about 3 months ago
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Largest Bitcoin Mining Pool Pledges Not To Execute '51% Attack'

FooAtWFU Re:Cant be worse (351 comments)

Inflation is like a tax on accounts denominated in dollar amounts, it's true. However, you'll also note that inflation in the US is relatively steady since the 1980s when Volcker took over. That's why the US dollar is relatively steady right now - unlike in 1981, when inflation was 13.5% . The dollar is trusted as far as it proves trustworthy.

But you can still get monetary shocks even if you don't depend on fiat currency: read up on the inflationary consequences of the gold rush of 1849 on the (gold-backed) money supply: "Soaring gold output from the California and Australia gold rushes is linked with a thirty percent increase in wholesale prices between 1850 and 1855."

about 3 months ago
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Largest Bitcoin Mining Pool Pledges Not To Execute '51% Attack'

FooAtWFU Re:Cant be worse (351 comments)

Yes, well, insofar as the US Government promises not to substantially manipulate the dollar, the dollar is stable. Insofar as they don't, the value of the dollar falls relative to other, more trustworthy currencies (and commodities) and people demand higher interest for government bonds, loans, and similar instruments, to compensate for the decaying value of the dollar.

(Of course, some "manipulation" is necessary to match fluctuations in the overall state of the economy and achieve a stable dollar. But even in ancient economies with commodity money, persistent deflation and monetary shocks were reasonably common.)

about 3 months ago
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FBI Edits Mission Statement: Removes Law Enforcement As 'Primary' Purpose

FooAtWFU Re:Put a fork in it, it's done. (539 comments)

It's the distance.

The US parties may collude on a variety of things (like counterterrorism, or if you prefer, "counterterrorism") but they have significantly differing views on the relationship of the role of government to the citizenry and the economy. For instance, on the national level, the US Democratic party has been pushing for things like the recent health-care reform laws (for good or ill), additional environmental regulation, increases in the minimum wage, and other increases in taxes and spending which see the government taking a larger role in the economy, including transfer payments (welfare, etc). They also resent military spending as a rule. The Republican party pushes for less government involvement in the economy, lower/flatter tax regimes, market solutions to issues like healthcare and wages, and a regulatory regime which is not simply less stringent, but also more streamlined where it is in fact present (and they do not resent military spending, at least not as a rule).

Things are different outside the economic arena, true, but 2008-2016's top issues were, in order: the economy, the economy, and the economy. So.

about 3 months ago
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Linksys Resurrects WRT54G In a New Router

FooAtWFU Re:Cost? (310 comments)

Clearly you don't do a lot of networking between home computers like a NAS or something.

about 3 months ago
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Bitcoin Exchange Value Halves After Chinese Ban

FooAtWFU And this (475 comments)

And this is why we're still decades away from having mortgages denominated in bitcoin. :P

about 4 months ago
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US Light Bulb Phase-Out's Next Step Begins Next Month

FooAtWFU Re:We vote on leaders not lightbulbs (1146 comments)

Did our ancestors imagine they were giving the Federal government the right to ban speech?

OF COURSE THEY DID. That's why several of the prominent political ones went to extra lengths in an attempt protect us from it, with their early amendments to the Constitution.

about 4 months ago
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GitHub Takes Down Satirical 'C Plus Equality' Language

FooAtWFU Re:Free speech (575 comments)

Well. Github's Terms of Service clearly identifies that "We may, but have no obligation to, remove Content and Accounts containing Content that we determine in our sole discretion are unlawful, offensive, threatening, libelous, defamatory, pornographic, obscene or otherwise objectionable". I assume they used that discretion to find it either "offensive" or "otherwise objectionable". And clearly Github is well within their legal rights to take down this content.

But it does illustrate the limits of Github's commitment to freedom and openness: if it offends Github's staff, or if Github thinks it offends people who could get them in some level of trouble, they'll take down your content. So, you can still use Github as a platform to effect change in the world, but only insofar as Github&co agree with you.

about 4 months ago
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High-Gain Patch Antennas Boost Wi-Fi Capacity In Crowded Lecture Halls

FooAtWFU Re:$591.25 a pop, for the antenna alone ! (104 comments)

Geez. You could buy an Aruba AP-93 Instant for that price, and it comes with a cone-antenna built in.

about 5 months ago

Submissions

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GitHub takes down parody 'C Plus Equality' programming language

FooAtWFU FooAtWFU writes  |  about 4 months ago

FooAtWFU (699187) writes "Some clowns and jokers over at 4chan thought it would be a funny idea to put together a web page for a programming language named "C Plus Equality" as a parody of feminism, dismissing OOP as "objectifying" and inheritance as "a tool of the patriarchy". But this parody was apparently too hot to host at Github, which took down the original Github repository after receiving criticism on Twitter, prompting a backlash and inquiry into the role of free speech and censorship on Github's platform. The project has since found a new home on BitBucket, at least for the time being."
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Monte Cristo axes MMO servers for Cities XL

FooAtWFU FooAtWFU writes  |  more than 4 years ago

FooAtWFU (699187) writes "When Monte Cristo released Cities XL in October 2009, the spiffy new feature was the "Planet Offer", a massively-multiplayer world where you could visit other players' cities, trade for resources, and construct special landmarks. A neat idea — but now they're pulling the plug, citing a lack of interest and subscriptions. (Perhaps $9/mo was a trifle steep). Does Monte Cristo's experience mark a speed bump for publishers eager to jump on the MMO bandwagon for an easy stream of subscription revenue? The game was dinged by critics (and many users) for feeling rushed and incomplete at its release (you couldn't even build any public transit) but online features and incremental improvements were touted as its salvation."
Link to Original Source
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Review: Cities XL

FooAtWFU FooAtWFU writes  |  more than 4 years ago

FooAtWFU (699187) writes "Thursday I recieved a copy of a new computer game: Cities XL, by Monte Cristo. It's been a while since there's been a major new contender in the sim game genre. While SimCity 4 was solid, SimCity societies is widely regarded as an abomination, and Monte Cristo's earlier City Life's game has a class-warfare dynamic which puts it in a space outside your normal vanilla city simulation. So when the demos came out of Cities XL featuring things like big sprawling highway interchanges and massive bridges and skyscrapers and curved roads (it's 2009, about time) it was a breath of fresh air on the scene. The initial reviews were pretty positive, and the extra features like "megastructures" and a real economy and trade between players and everything were gravy. Thus Monte Cristo promised the world, and they might even deliver it... but it's going to be at least 6 months late.

For Cities XL not finished. In fact, it's not even close. The list of 'things that are not available' includes some you'd think would be pretty basic, like: oh, bus stops, railroads, really any transit systems. It's funny: you can see the user interface options for some of these (the "neighbor railroad link" for instance) — you could see them in the demo! — but they're just not there. They haven't been programmed. If not otherwise informed you might wait until your city has a million people in hopes of unlocking the buildings, but they just don't exist. There are other places with pretty slim pickings, too: there is exactly one "park" structure, and it doesn't actually do anything for your city. Moreover it's clear from the 150 megabytes of patches you had to download right out the door that Monte Cristo was shipping this game well before they were finished with it.

And then there's the "Planet Offer". They want you to pay another $80/yr or so in order to let you build 5 cities that connect to their online trade system. So that you can get additional maps to supplement the meager collection they provided to begin with. And so you can get a discount on the imminent ski-resort expansion pack. (Really?) I wasn't in a particularly grand mood after learning about the game's incomplete state, and this "offer" didn't do anything to make it better.

That said, Cities XL is still — somehow — an okay sort of little city building game. The zoning interface is pretty innovative. The roads are decently realistic. You can make some really pretty little city layouts. The online economy's a little clunky yet, with contracts being canceled too abruptly without enough explanation, but I successfully engaged in commodities market arbitrage (doing things like buying heavy industrial output in units of 1 and 2 and selling it to the computer player in lots of 5 at a 66% markup).

I can forgive a few rough edges in multiplayer for a new game, especially an MMO economy, and I can even overlook little things like a memory leak that somehow makes the Trade screen slower than the rest of the game put together, or the fact that over a dozen patches each wanted their own UAC prompt, or that the registration system was somewhat nightmarish. But the combination of these rough edges, multiple major unfinished features, and pushing a "pay us more money" tactic doesn't make the game feel like a good deal. It just makes it feel like you're being nickeled and dimed to death, and throwing good money after bad. Avoid this game until it's picked up a clearer sense of direction."

Link to Original Source
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Model's lawsuit forces Google to identify blogger

FooAtWFU FooAtWFU writes  |  more than 4 years ago

FooAtWFU (699187) writes "Liskula Cohen, a model for Vogue, has successfully sued Google to force them to identify a blogger who called her mean names (such as "skank", "old hag" and "ho") so that she can file a defamation lawsuit. The case could set a dangerous precedent for anonymous speech online. Regrettably, the original blog postings have been taken down."
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FooAtWFU FooAtWFU writes  |  about 7 years ago

Fennec writes "Jeremiah Paleck wasn't too excited about the Vista launch, so he decided to have some fun, creating a sheet of Windows error stickers for A4 sticker paper (informing us gravely, "Error: The operation completed successfully"). BoingBoing and Engadget report, with an image of the sticker neatly placed in a Windows Vista advertisement at a bus stop in Prague. It seems that perhaps Vista's advertising campaign has been infected with a little "viral marketing"..."
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FooAtWFU FooAtWFU writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Fennec writes "Amazon.com has launched a beta of a new service called Askville, yet another online answers service, flavored with "Experience Points, Levels, and Quest Coins." These coins will supposedly become useful some day on another Amazon service that's not actually open yet, Questville. If this virtual currency becomes useful, could Askville fill a place between strictly volunteer systems and pay-for-answer services like the now-defunct Google Answers? Or is it destined to fail in the already-saturated online Q&A market?"

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