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Will Lyft and Uber's Shared-Ride Service Hurt Public Transit?

nobodie Re:It's only worth it (237 comments)

You are living in the past. Here in Tampa, public transit, that is buses, is growing faster than uber and lyft. (Disclaimer, my wife drove for Lyft until a couple of weeks ago, when she just got sick of the low return on time and our investment in a nice car). I was talking to a driver on the #6 route last week (my morning ride of 45-50 minutes door to desk) and he said they just hired 27 new drivers for route expansion and retirement replacement. Mostly expansion according to him. He has 30 years in as a driver and plans to stay on, the custoimers are getting nicer he says.

If I was driving, on the highway, it would take about 35 minutes from door to desk, so it costs me an extra 10-15 minutes to take the bus. Even at twice the loss consider this:
Bus cost: $.50 (50 cents) one way= $1.00 a day
Gas cost: 20 miles one way, 40 round trip, say $5.00 a day
Parking cost: $250.00 a year, say $1.00 a day minimum if I take no vacations
Cost of maintenance or carpayments for that second car (as it is we only keep one car because I don't need it to drive to work) as well as taxes and insurance.

OK, now think about this: instead of two crappy cars on my crappy salary we have a 2014 Chevy Volt, spend less than $100.00 a month on gas, $0 on maintenance, and have an nice, awesome ride. We are looking at trading up to a Tesla S when they come off of lease and we can get them about half price.
How could I do that if I was wasting my money on a second car?

More and more people can and should run this kind of simple cost/benefit analysis and realize that their lifestyle could be better just by making better choices. When I talk about this at work everyone has excuses, but the reality is that people are starting to move to my neighborhood because it has awesome bus service. the value of my house has gone up 45% in the last three years because it is close to downtown and has 5 different bus lines running on 15-20 minute schedules within 3 blocks of my front door.

So, your description of the bus is wrong, I know cause I ride it every day, dressed for my office and my classrooms and I fit in just fine.

4 days ago
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GNOME 3 Winning Back Users

nobodie Re:Responding to feedback (267 comments)

I have to agree. I switched my work computer to linux to suit what I had been doing for years as a lone wolf, but the office is MS. I do appreciate that, for what we do, Windows works OK. I still can work faster than most of my colleagues, but that is just me, not the systems.
BUT, I am still completely acclimated to gnome3 and linux and it would be a real waste of time and effort to switch to Windows. It is one of my few worries at work, that Win10 will be so tightly controled that in a WinOffice there will be no way to not use windows, or at least dual boot.

about a month ago
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Do Specs Matter Anymore For the Average Smartphone User?

nobodie never did matter (253 comments)

the "average" user buys based on advertising and hype, always have, always will. The informed user ignores the hype and buys what they need, not what has the "best" spec. Still, they study the specs and read "real" reviews (not the marketing hype I find right now in all the American media about the "amazing" new iPhone 6 for example.

Stupid Humans

about 2 months ago
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Phablet Reviews: Before and After the iPhone 6

nobodie Re:Hipsters are passe ... (277 comments)

you buy a phone on a contract plan? didn't learn math did you? or to recognize that when you get something for "free" you are paying twice the real price.

about 2 months ago
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Phablet Reviews: Before and After the iPhone 6

nobodie Re:Hipsters are passe ... (277 comments)

I'm way too seriously old for this to be other than funny.
Like Apple stuff in general, The last really great Apple product was the blue and white iMac in '98. That was not just agreat product, it was equal to PCs for five or six years after it's introduction. While PCs were moving at light speed improvement, our old iMac was equal to or ahead of anything else you could buy.
But now... what are they showing us? Nuttin' Advertising and marketing hype about something that is old the year before it came out. And, as with most things, what people care about is the hype and the marketing and the buyer buy-in.

When I point out that iPhones are now just "toy phones" to my students, they really don't get what I am talking about: they are made for children's hands.

When I point out that you have to use two hands to use a "phablet" which is kind of silly, "phones" have traditionally been a one-hand operation they also don't get it.

Why not? because they buy on two criteria: what has the hype at the moment, and what will make them look cool. Phone as fashion accessory, no wonder we want the new watches, they are obviously fashion.

We have lost the battle of form vs function. Fashion has won.

about 2 months ago
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Bioethicist At National Institutes of Health: "Why I Hope To Die At 75"

nobodie my real grandmother got lost (478 comments)

Yes, yes yes!
I remember my grandmother as a failing, doddering old lady who was confused on her good days. Only as I got old enough to be old myself do I appreciate her history, what she did before I was an active part of her life. She wrote three books (on semi-autobiographical and two based on the history of the Surratt family during the assassination of Lincoln) in the fifties and early sixties, was a newspaper reporter in the 50s through the sixties. She was an active part of the war effort in her community during WWII and in general was a feisty woman in a world full of housewives. But I never knew her that way because of time. In some ways I prefer to let go of the actual memories of the doddering old lady and hold on to her real achievements, even though they are not part of my memories about her.

about 2 months ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

nobodie Re:Science creates understanding of a real world. (770 comments)

As a language scientist ( a linguist) I know that you are coming from the hard sciences with an argument that I honor for its simplicity, its integrity and its beauty. Unfortunately it struggles in the real world of complex systems. In simple experiments we can shave away all the complementary and supplementary functions that are connected to any simple act or action. But in the real world we are constrained by reality and complexity, because if we remove attendant functions, we lose the reality of the system itself. Things/actions do not exist in simplicity, they grow, change, advance or retreat through complexity and this is where the hard sciences fail to recognize that complexity is the nature of reality and that the empirical function, of reducing to a single simple element or action, does not reflect the nature of the real universe.

Thus we scorn "modeling" because if we make a change in an attendant function we get a different answer even though the simple question ("Are we changing the world through pollution?") has not changed. We get different answers because of the complexity of the system, not because of the inability of the practitioners to define the component functions (or parts) carefully enough.

about 2 months ago
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Drought Inspires a Boom In Pseudoscience, From Rain Machines To 'Water Witches'

nobodie Re: A fool and their money (266 comments)

Dude, I have the experience too, and don't really want to believe it or to make up pseudo-scientific reasons why it works, but it does. Come on over to the house, I'll stick a couple bent copper wires in your hands and let you do it. Although I have seen one or two people that really don't get it/do it, most everyone else in the world can.

about 3 months ago
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Drought Inspires a Boom In Pseudoscience, From Rain Machines To 'Water Witches'

nobodie Re:1st post (266 comments)

I was taught this trick by a carpenter I worked for. He even showed me that if you put copper wires in a coke bottle they would find the pipes as well. I have used this many times, just a couple of months ago in fact, and it always works. I have also used it to find underground water flows when I lived in Thailand.

about 3 months ago
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A Horrifying Interactive Map of Global Internet Censorship

nobodie Re:What about.. (158 comments)

and why is the data from 2012? Looks like the author of the article followed a link to a 2012 report and wrote an article using that info, without any attempt to update. Or else the project died, or was censored?
Too many questions, my brain hurts when there is bad articles, bad data, bad , bad , bad................turtles. everywhere....

about 3 months ago
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Net Neutrality Is 'Marxist,' According To a Koch-Backed Astroturf Group

nobodie Re:What's so American (531 comments)

There are solutions to the problems we have with government that don't involve the demolition of government. That kind of binary thinking leads to a binary world that is not a reasonable and natural world. If we work toward a government that functions reasonably (unlike the American government which has dived deeply into binary logic and rhetoric) then we can have reasonable roads paid for by reasonable taxes and kept up to reasonable quality by reasonable companies that make a reasonable profit. What we have instead in the opposite of all that, so let's change the topic of discussion how we can create a reasonable world:
1. Reasonable expectations about time, humanity and expenses
2. Work on the core, not the rind
3. Use, grow, support and teach a reasonable set of virtues
4. Set aside ideology and empty stances, replace them with thoughtful, coherent ideas

There is probably a #5, but I'll let you share yours.

These are the reason's that I supported Lawrence Lessig's original proposal to create a SuperPAC to help end SuperPACs. I've stopped listening to him now as his ideology has overtaken the project. This will be its downfall.

about 3 months ago
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Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

nobodie Re:Nobody else seems to want it (727 comments)

as to your basic "challenge", the computer sitting next to me is a core2 duo that I built in Thailand in 2007. I thas been running Fedora since then, and nothing else. I upgrade it when new ones are released using the upgrade tools. Still works, all works, runs everything fine, never broken once. Does that satisfy?

about 3 months ago
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Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

nobodie Re:Nobody else seems to want it (727 comments)

hf, if your challenge is so realistic then why are so many companies running various distros? Why have I run a variety (say 8 or 10) of different distros in 4 or 5 different countries with different hardware and never, ever had a driver problem with any hardware? What is it in your challenge that you use to set a use case that would overcome the basic needs of a business person (me) a university professor (also me) and a parent with a wife and 3 kids all running Linux for home work and school (obviously also me.)

I really don't get why you feel the need to get all trolly about it as well. I have heard you being reasonable, intelligent and someone with useful viewpoints that, while not my own, are still valuable. What you are doing above is none of that. Why bother to be like this when you impressed me most as a reasonable and intelligent commentator?

about 3 months ago
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South Carolina Student Arrested For "Killing Pet Dinosaur"

nobodie Re:Yes it is. (421 comments)

"Wumao brigade"
The Chinese army of "fact checkers" who make sure that nothing "bad for the public" gets on the internet (or SMS when I was there, including Skype of course). The sad part is that most of them are unemployed Masters and PhD holders from mid to lower level Chinese universities who have formed the "Ant Tribe" and live in little concrete boxes with a bed, a desk and a computer on the desk. It is worse than you can imagine: they have tapped out their family's resources and have nothing to show for it, not even a factory job (they are over-educated for something like that).

about 3 months ago
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Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

nobodie Re:Nobody else seems to want it (727 comments)

hf, dear old friend, most of us who do use Linux are clueless about this driver problem you harp on about. We just don't see it. Now, someone has modded you down as a troll, which I think is unfair, because it is just you being you, and you really aren't a troll, you're just very tightly focused.

Robert A Wilson pointed out in his book "Final Trigger" that people have a basic instinct to find patterns, even where there are none. He pointed to a number of examples, but this over-focus of yours is my prime example for today: there is no "driver problem" with Linux, there is only your pattern rocognition brain sectors seeing what you "need" them to see.

I hope this helps, because you don't deserve to be modded troll, even though you did go a little over the top.

about 3 months ago
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Figuring Out Where To Live Using Math

nobodie Re:Absurd assertion, you've never lived with humid (214 comments)

I'll meet that challenge:
I live in Tampa, today the high will be 94, I will be outside working in and out of the sun. Depending on the level of output required I might (OMG~!!!) sweat. But, because I keep the house AC at 80 (I have AC in the "common" area of the house where our guests spend time: I have a small B&B), I don't get uncomfortable in heat and humidity.

I hired a guy to come and help me load (and take to the dump) some roofing I had ripped off yesterday. Halfway through the loading (say about 4pm) he had to stop, fire up his truck and sit in the AC for ten minutes before he could go on. This is the state of the nation.

It is not the heat, or the humidity: it is your personal habits, your laziness, your lifestyle that abjures contact with the natural atmosphere in preference to your "comfort." I often point out that when I was young, in the 50s and 60s, my family lived in tidewater VA where the summer humidity was "stinkin'." We had a single fan in the cieling above the stairs to the bedrooms. That was it. I am sorry that your abusive parents treated you like a fragile flower and you didn't build up the immunity to heat that is a built-in possibility for you. Sue them!

(My kids often complain now about having air conditioning set too low: they "escape" to the outside, just as I have done most of my adult life. I hate AC, and especially the closed windows and doors that go along with it.)

about 3 months ago
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Comcast Drops Spurious Fees When Customer Reveals Recording

nobodie Re: Automated notice not necessary here (368 comments)

yes, but think:
If you record that announcement ("this call may be...") and play it back at the beginning of your call with the company isn't there a good chance that the person on the other end of the line will assume a company phone glitch and ignore the information. That way they are still assuming that they are not being recorded even though they have been notified of the recording.
We all need to begin to record any conversation with commercial reps in all situations, what they say is innane, stupid and often wrong. But it is actionable.

about 3 months ago
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Soccer Superstar Plays With Very Low Brain Activity

nobodie Re:"Intelligence" is not earned. (160 comments)

I was, years ago, a very skilled carpenter. What i have learned since I put my tools down is that now, almost 20 years later, I still know how to do those things, but I physically can't. My hands and body have lost the skill, the micromotor skills, the knowledge if you will, that they used to hold. I am not so much sad about it, but aware that many of the things that were trained into me are lost now that I am older and no longer practiced.
The other thing I know is that those skills can come back quickly if I want to practice them again. But really, I don't. I do little projects here and there, but as I am seeing the "knowledge" come back, the project is finished and I go back to my desk and my classroom while the "knowledge" drains away again.
Bittersweet.

about 4 months ago
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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

nobodie Re:sure, works for France (296 comments)

Well, I use LO in the US, in an office environment with a hundred or so people, almost nobody knows that I'm not using MSO. What people don't seem to get is that most people would use a text editor daily if it said "Word" on the icon.

If I tell people that I am using a Linux desktop, they won't touch it. If I tell them I am just using a cool new desktop they try it out and like it. I don't bother to show them all the things I can do that they can't, don't baffle them, just keep work flowing and everything is good. The same thing with LO. Just bring up a document and let them write, no problem. Tell them it is different and they will freak.

stupid humans

about 4 months ago
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Chromebooks Are Outselling iPads In Schools

nobodie Re:Papers (225 comments)

sorry, missed that close quote, damn it!

about 4 months ago

Submissions

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Fascists circling the wagons

nobodie nobodie writes  |  more than 4 years ago

nobodie (1555367) writes "In a shocking recent story, the New York Times describes how Microsoft is being used by the Russian government to quell dissent by seizing the computers of NGOs and other dissenting organizations (individuals next???) in order to search for .... pirated MS products. This has the blessings of the Redmond giant because it is inline with their global anti-piracy efforts: "Microsoft lawyers made statements describing the company as a victim and arguing that criminal charges should be pursued. The lawyers rebuffed pleas by accused journalists and advocacy groups, including Baikal Wave, to refrain from working with the authorities." (from the story, by Clifford Levy)"
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