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Curved TVs Nothing But a Gimmick

banda Re: No Way! (261 comments)

Stereo audio recordings, gimmick. When I move around the room, the soundscape doesn't change. When will consumers stop falling for this crap?

about 7 months ago

Siphons Work Due To Gravity, Not Atmospheric Pressure: Now With Peer Review

banda Re:Actually it's both. (360 comments)

It can if the hole is below the level of the higer reservoir. Otherwise the hose itself becomes the higher reservoir in which case it still siphons, just not in the direction you want.

about 8 months ago

Planet Mercury Has Shrunk More Than Thought

banda Re:Shrinkage (58 comments)

...like a frightened turtle

about 9 months ago

Amazon Coins and How the Definition of 'Crypto-Currency' Is Getting Too Loose

banda Re:BitCoin has complete record of transactions. (115 comments)

Do you think they have ever deleted a transaction record?

Yes, Visa has deleted a lot of transaction records - they don't hold anyone's account balances. They hold a copy of transactions for four main purposes: 1) they charge participating banks an annual license fee based on how many Visa transactions they engage in. 2) They act as a transaction processor (doing clearing and settlement) between banks. 3) They engage in fraud detection and fraud research as a service to the banks who are their customers, and 4) They enrich transaction data (adding more info) and sell it back to the banks as a service.

None of these things requires them to A) know who the account holders are or B) keep transactions lying around for more than a couple years. After two years, the usefulness of data for fraud research is gone, and all the money making opportunities for transaction details have evaporated.

about 10 months ago

Amazon Coins and How the Definition of 'Crypto-Currency' Is Getting Too Loose

banda Re:BitCoin has complete record of transactions. (115 comments)

Perhaps - at the present, it is 14 GB (source: https://blockchain.info/charts...)
BUT, to have a bitcoin wallet and participate in bitcoin commerce, it's not required to have a local copy of the blockchain.
Further, if you look at the original whitepaper ( https://bitcoin.org/bitcoin.pd... ) you'll see section 7 has an explanation of how sufficiently old transactions COULD be removed from the blockchain without corrupting the hash of each bitcoin.

about 10 months ago

Amazon Coins and How the Definition of 'Crypto-Currency' Is Getting Too Loose

banda Re:BitCoin has complete record of transactions. (115 comments)

No, not really - The purpose of cryptography in crypto currencies is two-fold: 1) to make it massively impractical for any individual to falsify the record of their payment or receipt and 2) to regulate the money supply by algorithm in response to the activity of the currency's economy. The net effect of these two purposes is that value can be stored and transferred between accounts without a "trusted agent" in the middle such as a deposit bank or a central bank. So, you can say the point of crypto currency is not to make the account holders anonymous, it is to eliminate the "trusted middleman" from commerce. Of course once that trusted middleman is eliminated, there is no functional reason to record the identities of the account owners anywhere, because that information is no longer important for commerce. The cryptography doesn't conceal the identities of account holders - it makes their identities irrelevant.
The block chain is easy to read and verify, contains the entire transaction history of every "wallet" that ever transacted in bitcoin, and does not contain any personally identifiable information about bitcoin holders because it doesn't need to.

about 10 months ago

Why Charles Stross Wants Bitcoin To Die In a Fire

banda Re:Bitcoin is not anonymous (691 comments)

Bitcoin is not pseudonymous. It does not use pseudonyms. It does not use any names at all.

public key = psuedonym

1 year,7 days

Ubuntu Touch On a Nexus 7: "Almost Awesome"

banda Re:"Almost Awesome"? (116 comments)

Truculent Toucan
Tethered Tadpole
Tipsy Termite
Transitive Terrier
Tawny Turtle
Topheavy Tuna
Tawdry Titmouse

Which one suggests the best logo?

about a year ago

Who's Getting Pay-By-Phone Right? The Fast Food Industry

banda Re:Starbucks figured it out early (153 comments)

The major cost of cash for retailers is in shrinkage - cash disappears, is counterfeit, or isn't collected in its full amount.

All that other stuff - retail workers, Brinks trucks, counting the drawer, safes - that doesn't go away just because you accept credit.

Also, card fraud is a cost for merchants - they're on the hook, but bad debt is absolutely not the merchant's problem - in fact that's a plus for accepting electronic payments... the merchant doesn't have to extend credit to customers and then try to collect later - collection is the issuing bank's problem.

Merchants who do "big ticket" sales (more than the walking around money in the average wallet) LOVE credit, because it makes purchases less of a hassle for the buyer. Small ticket retailers don't like it that much because a) they can't eliminate cash, b) accepting credit doesn't distinguish them in the market and c) because they aren't capitalizing on the opportunity for big ticket sales.

And then there's loyalty programs and direct marketing... retailers who have figred that out LOVE electronic payments for the insight they can deliver on customer behavior.

Yes, there are businesses who hate dealing with merchant banks and electronic payments, but they are the ones who are only doing it because of the loss of business they would suffer if they turned away cashless Millenials - Those businesses' opinion of credit is going to be very gloomy indeed - like their own futures in the marketplace, perhaps.

about a year ago

Your Next TV Interface Will Be a Tablet

banda Older news is even older. (210 comments)

Sony Tablet S - it's an Android tablet that can do DLNA, Sony Media Remote over IP, AND has an IR blaster built in with an awesome multi-device interface. Good looking tablet, controls everything, can "throw" and "catch" media to my network connected TV.

So it's quite likely that my next TV interface will be a tablet... because my CURRENT TV interface is a tablet

more than 2 years ago

Nuclear Truckers Haul Warheads Across US

banda Seen more than I can count (461 comments)

In a previous job (one where I was paid very little, lived in the desert, and wore a uniform to work) I worked within spitting distance of the concrete pad where they loaded and unloaded the OST trailers. I won't go into detail, but the safety measures that prevent unauthorized persons from accessing the trailer contents are serious enough that I wouldn't wish to ever be on the authorized crew that loads and unloads them.

Also, you can sometimes tell that the plain jane tractor trailer is a SST (Safe, Secure Transport) because it's surrounded by a convoy of Suburbans with a wide variety of antennae, and a full load of US Marshals armed to the teeth. They don't go anywhere without that.

They can flip 'em over in ice storms all day for all I care. Any group who wants to can try to steal the cargo for all I care. I have zero worries about the contents of these vehicles. They are safer than just about anything else in the world.

more than 2 years ago

Pakistan Bans 1600 Words and Phrases For Texting

banda Curiouser and curiouser (356 comments)

I too would like to pretend that the XFL never existed, but ban people from texting "HEHATEME"? Is Rod Smart THAT controversial in Pakistan?

more than 3 years ago

Skilled Readers Recognize Words By Shape

banda Forming my response (420 comments)

The study's authors are now busy memorizing the shape of the word "Duh."

more than 3 years ago

Sony Racing Apple To Develop 'a New Kind of TV'

banda Re:Completely different design mentalities (273 comments)

Sorry. Convergence happened long enough ago that your joke is an anachronism. Today, the remote for my Sony TV is my iPhone. Sony's Media Remote iPhone app is pretty darn good.

more than 3 years ago

The Mythical Tunnel Between CERN and Central Italy

banda There's a real explanaton (303 comments)

The receiving site in the experiment IS in a mountain tunnel. The tunnel construction was widened to accommodate the laboratory as well as the road traffic. Italy paid for that. The tunnel does not connect the two sites. One lane of the tunnel traffic was stopped for the duration of the experiment to improve the accuracy of the measurements. Italian tunnel money made this science possible. Stop hating, yo?

more than 3 years ago

2 In 3 Misunderstand Gas Mileage; Here's Why

banda Re:Solution? (1042 comments)

And 0 miles on a tank of diesel.

No, they get about 3/4 of a mile before the billowing white smoke from the tailpipe and the rapidly degrading performance convinces them to stop and call a tow truck.

more than 4 years ago

Revenge of the Cable Customer

banda Re:Binging (397 comments)

If you even saw the signature, then maybe you should check your viewing options. Sigs almost never offer anything germane to any discussion.

Mind if I quote that in my sig?

more than 4 years ago

The Sad History and (Possibly) Bright Future of TiVo

banda Great software, poor hardware selection (490 comments)

I reluctantly cancelled my TiVo service last year. Reason: They have no hardware that supports HD and satellite. I hate the Dish Network DVR's software - it's garbage compared to TiVo, but I can't spend the rest of my life looking at 480i.

I check TiVo's hardware offerings every so often - I will be a subscriber again when they support satellite an HD in the same box.

There is a local cable company, but I would sooner eat my own feces than give them a penny.

more than 4 years ago

Microsoft Tries a New Ad Agency

banda Re:No, fake friends are obvious. (372 comments)

Mod parent up.

The "Mojave" ad campaign proves one thing: Windows Vista is very impressive - if you're not responsible for buying the extra hardware it takes to run it.

more than 6 years ago


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