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Uber Capping Prices During Snowmageddon 2015

Yebyen Re:So what will this accomplish? (152 comments)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but in normal operation on a busy night you can see Uber prices surge up to 500% or more. If you want to see anti-gouging laws implemented like they have in New Jersey, where gas stations and service providers are not allowed to increase their prices during a disaster situation, go ahead and support Uber's right to surge pricing whenever they want it.

Uber has done this thing voluntarily to try and avoid that, or to try and make themselves look like gracious help-your-neighbor types, earning goodwill and getting exposure with good impressions or whatever. It's not like they've done away with surge pricing either, they've only capped it at 290%, which means again -- if they were a gas station or other essential service in New Jersey, they might be already running afoul of anti-gouging laws that do exist there.

Think of it from a risk management perspective, too. If you have the possibility of earning three weeks pay in two days just by going out to risk your life driving around strangers in the storm of the century, are you going to do it? Maybe every driver will! What if you had the potential to make only two and a half days worth of pay in the same amount of time instead? How bad is that storm supposed to get again?

Maybe if that's all you can make, you're gonna check that weather report again or look outside and think about it for a minute before you just sign on your car and open up shop today.

2 days ago
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Obama Proposes 30-Day Deadline For Disclosing Security Breaches

Yebyen Re:Not a bad idea... (125 comments)

This whole business of patches is really nonsense, if you want my actual opinion. If your data is worth $X and you have a contract with insured software vendors that protects you from liability to exposure from information loss up to $X-N, your exposure to a loss event is $N. If you don't have such contract, your exposure is $X. That's all I'm saying.

I know I am living in fairy dream land here, but I think it's irresponsible that basically every company it seems is taking software that they can't inspect (because it's closed source, or because it's so gargantuan and impossible to audit without an army of coders at your own disposal) and going out collecting secrets from their customers and putting them into the magic box to be trusted to keep them safe. All I'm saying is, put your money where your mouth is.

When did software get so hard? Why does every computer system need to always be such a great big ball of mud?

about two weeks ago
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Obama Proposes 30-Day Deadline For Disclosing Security Breaches

Yebyen Re:Not a bad idea... (125 comments)

No! Just no!

If you are a business in the business of making money, small or large, and you have taken my data for some business reason and are careless with it, you should be liable for whatever happens. Every time I hear about another retail company that is storing a bunch of credit cards against the law and PCI, who really doesn't need to be storing any credit card numbers at all, I say "Well no wonder. It was probably the fault of some poor overworked, underpaid IT department." Probably the sales department charged the clients not enough to cover the actual cost of operating the business, and they cut corners. You don't win bids pricing services reasonably, you have to undercut the competition!

If you think that every company should have carte blanche to do just whatever with customer data, without regard to keeping it secure from hackers, because "computer hard, IT too expensive" then you are part of the problem. Until some of these companies that are gutted by hackers with their "secure" data splayed out all over the internet, get gutted again afterwords by regulators, or even customers leaving to hold them to account after the event, the executive suite is going to continue to place the security bulletin into the circular file and we are going to see more and more of these breaches.

about two weeks ago
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Stars Traveling Close To Light Speed Could Spread Life Through the Universe

Yebyen Re:Title (184 comments)

And I have made a basic error of assuming that 1.0 = 100% (gamma where relativity has no effect) means 1.06-1.0 = 6% (effect of reduction is 6%.)

To understand the mistake, explain what happens when Gamma is 2.0... I'll give you a hint, it doesn't mean that you are now 100% shorter than you were.

about 2 months ago
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Stars Traveling Close To Light Speed Could Spread Life Through the Universe

Yebyen Re:Title (184 comments)

If you were moving at 1/3 the speed of light, you are approximately 6% shorter than you were in a rest frame. (To an outside observer? I am never sure if I have this stuff right because it's totally impossible for me to demonstrate with an experiment. For a thought experiment, inside of your frame of reference you wouldn't be able to tell because your measuring devices would experience the same transformation.)

If you were at 2/3 the speed of light, you would be about 34.1% shorter. This is length contraction. As you approach the speed of light, it is harder and harder to accelerate (more energy input is required). If you were at 99.99% the speed of light, you would be 1/70th your current length. This is the same factor that determines how much harder it is to accelerate. It's called gamma. At normal (non-relativistic speeds) your gamma is 1.0. At 1/3 the speed of light, your gamma is about 1.06066 (so the effect of gamma is 0.06066, or roughly 6%). I am rusty but I think you could consider anything with a gamma measurably greater than 1 to be "close to the speed of light" compared to how fast we are moving on this rock, for example at 1% speed of light your gamma is only 1.00005. Our solar system moves around about 220km/s according to Google, or 0.073% the speed of light. So, gamma of 1.00000 out to at the very least least 5 digits.

about 2 months ago
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No, You Can't Seize Country TLDs, US Court Rules

Yebyen Re:Interesting (120 comments)

I think that loophole is called a "Trust"

I don't fully understand how it's different than just having your money in a bank, but that is supposed to provide you with some insulation against having your property seized due to a judgement against you. I also don't understand how putting your money in an irrevocable trust can be of any value, if the point is that you can no longer access your own money to pay a judgement, what would have been the point of earning it in the first place?

about 3 months ago
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Amazon Forced To Reboot EC2 To Patch Bug In Xen

Yebyen Re:Compared to Azure (94 comments)

So what you're saying is, there were occasional failures.

about 4 months ago
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German Court: Google Must Stop Ignoring Customer E-mails

Yebyen Re:The End Result . . . (290 comments)

This does not mean they need to reply to _your particular_ e-mail. It simply means that any legal challenges and/or requests which are appropriate to send via e-mail can be addressed to the support address, and the consequences of ignoring those requests can be legally binding as if they were delivered (since they were.)

What kind of requests those might be, I don't think is addressed by the filing. I think they would also be abiding by the ruling if they closed the address and opened a new one, required 2FA to get ahold of a person, captcha, or any other spam-protection measures you can imagine. It's the auto-responder that says "yeah customer, don't try to e-mail us, we don't read e-mail at all" that is against the law.

about 5 months ago
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Microsoft Dumps 1,500 Apps From Its Windows Store

Yebyen Re:Google needs to clean up search (126 comments)

I just wrote a longer response to your post and Chrome ate it (bah)

Basically I think you are wrong about (2), but having just read up on the reasons for IceWeasel rebranding, it would seem that Mozilla does not agree with me.

Isn't it true that the Advertising Clause in original BSD license was the one and only thing separating it from GPL and making it incompatible? The advertising clause, which does nothing other than assert the rights and protections that are already granted by Trademark law...

about 5 months ago
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Microsoft Dumps 1,500 Apps From Its Windows Store

Yebyen Re:Google needs to clean up search (126 comments)

What? Nobody even _said_ Windows XP, nor was it in the linked screenshot anywhere. I looked twice. WTF are you talking about?

about 5 months ago
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Choose Your Side On the Linux Divide

Yebyen Quick adoption of Upstart (826 comments)

I too am suspicious about the quick adoption of the Upstart init system in Ubuntu. (^W^W^W oops this article is about something else?)

Upstart is an Ubuntu-Only-ism, yet lots of people are using Ubuntu, and many times they are even on current/supported releases!

Upstart is not tested / does not work with many emerging technologies, such as Docker. We should all rally together against Upstart!

Seriously, I am not sure which side I should be on. I use Ubuntu with Docker and I've become a fan of baseimage-docker, which leveraged the "runit" system of managing service processes. It's braindead simple and totally transparent. After a couple of weeks using it occasionally, I feel like I can know it inside and out as a system that provides a level of clarity and transparency that I never had with Upstart, and don't get yet with Systemd. I am writing my own init "run" scripts and touching the binaries with my bare hands, and I don't mind.

Then outside of Docker, where Upstart works, I am letting the package maintainers handle this for me, and outside of the occasional "/etc/init.d/foo is a no-op and doesn't tell me so when I try to use it", everything works as I expect and I'm never touching inits at all. It's too cumbersome. Systemd, for the little bit that I've used it seems to me like a marginal improvement over that. There are a lot of keywords and config file directives to master. There is potential that these inits could be ported into a docker container with no additional keystrokes, since systemd itself is able to run in those container/protected environments. Great!

about 5 months ago
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WikiLeaks' Assange Hopes To Exit London Embassy "Soon"

Yebyen Re:Diplomatic pouch? (299 comments)

Solve what problem? The UK are the ones who are waiting with baited breath that want to arrest him, I don't see why they would agree to this.

about 5 months ago
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Xiaomi's Next OS Looks Strikingly Similar To iOS

Yebyen Re:I don't see it.... (181 comments)

It's mock-racism. He's trying to play back the overtones (subtext?) from the article. I didn't read the original story, but even I can see this line is supposed to sound unapologetically racist, in a blatant way which maybe the original comparison didn't make so obvious. Haven't you ever heard the meme that Chinese make only cheap copies of American inventions? It's a totally racist idea, unless it's actually true. (Which I'm sure it's not.)

about 5 months ago
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Comcast Drops Spurious Fees When Customer Reveals Recording

Yebyen Re:yeah yeah (368 comments)

The bundle would be for TV, Phone, and Internet. The sentence should probably have the emphasis placed on "You NEVER ANSWER".

The implication being that you pay extra for Comcast telephone number that is instantly sold to telemarketers, and since all of your friends have your cell phone number, only telemarketers and bill collectors are actually ringing to call you on it.

We had this phone in a house I used to live. The rent guy ("land lord") apparently owed money on some credit cards that were in default and collections, and he was able to tell poor people moving in that there was a house phone, they could use it to look for a job so they could afford a cell phone (maybe some job better than their crappy job, hopefully we didn't have anyone moving in with no job and no way to pay rent...)

All of the poor people inevitably had cell phones. Nobody used the house phone. If you were in the living room watching TV though, the (888) number that liked to call every day around dinner time would definitely take up 1/2 of the display area on the screen as the Caller ID was automatically routed through the television!

Wow, that's technology.

about 6 months ago
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Judge Rejects $324.5 Million Settlement For Tech Workers, Argues For More

Yebyen Re:as one of the effected people (268 comments)

You don't get H1B permits for the whole company. You are an American company, you have to fill so many jobs with Americans, and then you are considered for H1Bs. I'm pretty sure that's how it works, you can't just fire all of the locals and staff the whole factory with H1B workers from New Delhi and Guangdong. You also have to show that you made an effort to fill those jobs with qualified Americans and none were available^w willing to work for your pittance, and even then you have a bunch of hoops. So, if all the companies want to keep their pigs from gaining too much weight, they might have to collude together to try and do it... which is of course illegal as we're seeing now.

about 6 months ago
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Inside BitFury's 20 Megawatt Bitcoin Mine

Yebyen Re:Waste of power (195 comments)

"based on the real world" so, you mean, in fact completely unreal and made of unicorn dust.

How would you tie energy generation to coins? I'm assuming the point of your proposed solution is that the coins are a reward for generating energy, and producing the coins does not actually consume the power. So, how do you make it provably fair? Install ammeters at each generation site with embedded DRM protections?

Why not just sell the power?

about 6 months ago
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Judge: US Search Warrants Apply To Overseas Computers

Yebyen Re:Finally! (502 comments)

And how would they enforce their subpoena in this imaginary world where governments you don't ever interact with in any way can somehow affect you personally?

[/american]

about 6 months ago
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UK Government Report Recommends Ending Online Anonymity

Yebyen Re:Outlawing this fun too? (282 comments)

Our sushi man does this too, only I have the feeling his name is really Yes. Good Japanese name.

about 6 months ago
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35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

Yebyen Re:Lies and statistics... (570 comments)

Didn't he say so, he did actually have to pay $6000? In premiums, whether he got bit by a bat this year or not, every year. Plus co-pays.

Hopefully his deductible is lower than yours, if he's the only person on his care plan.

about 6 months ago
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Netflix Reduces Physical-Disc Processing, Keeps Prices the Same

Yebyen Re:Blame Comcast/Verizon? (354 comments)

So I'm curious. When your business' expenses increase in one department, and there's absolutely nothing at all you can do about it to stop that increase from happening, what do you do? I'm pretty sure at Netflix, they either raise prices for a segment of their customers dramatically, raise prices more slightly for their customers across the board, cut their expenses in another department, or shore up operations and close the doors for good.

They are one company over at Netflix, not like Time Warner/Time Warner Cable/Time Warner Telecom/AOL/FifthMealCompany which are all independent and separate from each other nowadays, unless you're asking some jerk on the street who doesn't know any better. Those companies are all free standing and profitable. Netflix has only one money pit.

And you think the primary expense of the mail division that operates six days a week is only postage? You're even more clueless than I thought!

about 6 months ago

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