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New Crash Test Dummies Reflect Rising American Bodyweight

c Air bags (16 comments)

As long as it doesn't lead to an increase in the power of air bags such that they become (more) unsafe to people with a healthy weight, I don't see this as an entirely bad thing.

22 minutes ago
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Google Announces Project Ara Developer Conference, Shows Off First Prototype

c Re:only for nerds (51 comments)

No one in the mass market will buy this.

Nonsense. You just haven't been paying attention. The market is already buying modular phones. It's just that the modularity sucks, hard.

What do you think those battery cases are? MHL/OTG dongles? Just modules with extra ports. iPhone camera lenses? Infrared camera adapters? Pressy (extra hardware button that fits in the headphone jack)? Dimple (stick on NFC-based hardware buttons)? Wireless charging plates that fit in behind the battery and plug into the USB port?

1 hour ago
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Apple Pay Competitor CurrentC Breached

c Re:Competition (245 comments)

They could be waiting for CurrentC to officially go "live", with a massive marketing campaign, before pulling it.

yesterday
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Apple Pay Competitor CurrentC Breached

c Re:Competition (245 comments)

Any sort of anti-trust issue that arises from Google and Apple banning their apps is the same as CurrentC users banning the use of NFC.

Anti-trust is leveraging a monopoly in one area to gain advantage in another. Apple and Google between them pretty much own the app store market, at least in North America. CurrentC members don't, as far as I can determine, hold anything close to a monopoly on anything, nor are they collectively a monopoly.

Apple might not give a shit about anti-trust, but I think Google would play it more cautiously. They've been getting enough grief.

yesterday
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Apple Pay Competitor CurrentC Breached

c Re:Competition (245 comments)

Of course, Apple and Google can shut CurrentC down before they even get out of the starting gate - simply ban them from the app stores.

That'd probably raise some anti-trust issues, though.

Given CurrentC's complete tone-deafness about what consumers actually want in a mobile payment system (easy, secure, private, pick none?), the best strategy Apple and Google could choose is to keep pushing their respective solutions and ignore CurrentC entirely.

yesterday
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A Library For Survival Knowledge

c Re:interesting, questionable (257 comments)

the scientist or engineer who needs something machined in an arbitrary shape to within a certain tolerance now has access to someone who can do it.

Well, no.

That's a distinctly different skill, and covered largely by "Woodworking Turning Patternmaking and More" or any of the works called "Pattern-Making" (which darned well should be part of a survival library). And you'll find that the results tend to be the exact opposite of "pretty" (sanding wood perfectly smooth tends to be incompatible with precise tolerances, and in practice patterns used a lot of (flat black) paint and wood filler).

Gothic (or any other type of architectural molding) is the exact opposite of precise. It's intended to be banged out in quantity, often by multiple craftsman, and inaccuracies are largely masked by repetition and the sheer scale of the works, and the specific patterns and styles are driven largely by fashion and trends of the period. In other words, most of those kinds of "books" are more like catalogs than instruction manuals.

I'm not saying there might not be any value in having them, but there should be a distinct separation between "needs" and "wants".

2 days ago
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A Library For Survival Knowledge

c Re:interesting, questionable (257 comments)

I wonder what "embalming" does in a survivor handbook, but maybe that's just me being a semantics nazi.

I was kinda curious about who decided "A Manual of Gothic Moldings" would be of substantial value for survivor knowledge.

It's an interesting idea, but it really needs to be curated better to separate out the "needs" and "wants".

2 days ago
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Elon Musk Warns Against Unleashing Artificial Intelligence "Demon"

c Re:By yourself you know others (581 comments)

All that this means is that deep down, Elon Musk doesn't have any faith in kindness and goodness and altruism...

Or he understands that the first practical use of AI is most likely going to be, like just about any technology, for war, money, and/or entertainment.

2 days ago
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US Army May Relax Physical Requirements To Recruit Cyber Warriors

c Re:Something wrong with those numbers (307 comments)

Does obesity account for all the rest?

The summary specifically said "obesity or health problems". I assume that would include things like asthma, diabetes, vision problems, etc. I'd have to wonder if anyone taking medication would immediately be flagged as "unhealthy", automatically excluding anyone diagnosed with ADHD and many other behavioural disorders?

2 days ago
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Tech Firm Fined For Paying Imported Workers $1.21 Per Hour

c Re:$3500 fine? (286 comments)

That's a joke. They should have been fined at least as much as the backwages were.

That's still peanuts.

If you really wanted to send a message, they should be required to pay for an external auditor of the governments choice to come in and perform a top-to-bottom audit on all employee and contractor compensation.

And then get fined for anything fishy.

about a week ago
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Google Changes 'To Fight Piracy' By Highlighting Legal Sites

c Re:So really what's happening is that... (160 comments)

Google isn't going to change anything, just charge legal sites to place their ads on piracy searches.

Seems reasonable. How else is Google supposed to know the difference between honest content providers and those dirty pirates?

The whole DMCA takedown debacle shows us that you clearly can't take someones word that they're a copyright owner; they frequently lie about it. But we've been told time and time again that those dirty pirates expect everything for free, so you'd expect that charging money for listings will obviously let the legit operators bubble to the top.

about two weeks ago
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The Largest Ship In the World Is Being Built In Korea

c Re:That's bananas! (275 comments)

enough space to transport 864 million bananas

I'm so happy to see we have finally converted to the banana scale. I've been waiting for this since horsepower was invented!

Just think... now we're just a double entendre away from the "shlong scale".

about two weeks ago
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In UK, Internet Trolls Could Face Two Years In Jail

c Re:So what qualifies? (489 comments)

I have a feeling that there are some people who would take a polite "You're wrong and I disagree with you for the following reasons . . ." as trolling.

I was going to say that "you're a coward who is poisoning our national life" is a fine example, but that's good too.

about two weeks ago
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The Great Robocoin Rip-off

c Re:right.... (117 comments)

If your scheme to make money from Bitcoin involves giving real money to someone else who's scheme to make money from Bitcoin involves getting real money from you, then looking at past history of Bitcoin money-making schemes it's highly likely that out of all the people around the table, you are the sucker.

about two weeks ago
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Google Announces Motorola-Made Nexus 6 and HTC-Made Nexus 9

c Re:Meh (201 comments)

Not a one is actually a small, well featured phone. They are simply old and/or reduced spec phones every bit as big as the first wave of large phones.

Generally true, but I've been hearing good things about the Sony Xperia mini/compacts. At least, I'm hoping that's true because when I have to replace my current 4.3" phone, I'm not keen on going much larger...

about two weeks ago
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The Great Robocoin Rip-off

c Re:Serveds him right for being a hipster twat (117 comments)

I think a general rule of thumb is that once you hit 5 digits of price, a test drive is never too much to ask.

That's really just a subset of an even more general rule of thumb, "a fool and his money are soon parted".

about two weeks ago
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Ross Ulbricht's Lawyer Says FBI's Hack of Silk Road Was "Criminal"

c Re:Go Ross, Go! (208 comments)

Silk Road Kingpin or not, I'm rooting for Ross here.

I wonder what the people he attempted to have murdered think about all this?

If we follow the arguments in the article to their logical conclusion, then you're talking about an accusation coming from a bunch of criminals. Indeed, one might argue that it's a criminal conspiracy against him.

If they're going to act like criminals, then the government has no credibility in any accusation they make against Mr. Ulbricht.

Now, he likely is a criminal scumbag who did some very stupid and/or shady things, but given the choice between going after one shady guy or an entire organization of criminals, which do you think is a better use of law enforcement resources?

about three weeks ago
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Why the FCC Will Probably Ignore the Public On Network Neutrality

c Evidence? (336 comments)

Changes require systematic, reliable evidence, not emotional expressions . . . In the wake of more than 3 million comments...

3 million people having a coherent opinion on the subject is as systematic, reliable evidence as any other survey of public opinion. That the bulk of those 3 million are likely saying that network neutrality is a really good idea should be considered a fairly reliable data point. I'm not sure it would be a good idea for the FCC to just brush it off.

about three weeks ago
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Cyanogen Inc. Turns Down Google, Seeing $1 Billion Valuation

c Re:Google just pissy (107 comments)

You implied that some manufacturers don't drop support prematurely.

Hm. True. I could've phrased that better, although the definition of "premature" in this case might be debatable. I like to think that everyone will agree that "while the device is still being sold in stores" definitely counts as "premature", and I'm of the opinion that anything less than 2 years after introduction is pushing it.

Outside of the Nexus line, I'm not sure any device would get a pass.

Even Google drops support for Nexus devices after 2 years.

They suggest it'll typically be 18 months, but I'm not sure they've released enough Nexus devices to establish any kind of solid track record. At the moment, the 1st gen Nexus 7 is over the 2 year mark and appears to still be seeing updates. The Nexus 4 and 10 are still being sold, so I doubt you'll see Google stop supporting them soon even though they're comfortably at the 2 year mark.

about three weeks ago
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Cyanogen Inc. Turns Down Google, Seeing $1 Billion Valuation

c Re:Google just pissy (107 comments)

Google is just in a snit that CyanogenMod is fantastically better than stock android, BECAUSE it gives power back to users.

So does Xposed, and far deeper than CM ever contemplated.

More likely Google is looking at CM because CM effectively helps to solve the Android "fragmentation" problem, namely getting the latest version onto devices where the manufacturers drop support prematurely. All they'd have to do is officially brand CM as their "Android legacy support" service and just kinda step back.

about three weeks ago

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