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Parents Investigated For Neglect For Letting Kids Walk Home Alone

sl149q Re:Biased Institutions FTW (778 comments)

Just turned sixty. Still can't stomach whisky or pretty much any hard liquor thanks to Dad letting me get a little too much at 18.

about two weeks ago
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Uber Suspends Australian Transport Inspector Accounts To Block Stings

sl149q Re:Extradition? (299 comments)

The cost structure for Uber drivers is very similar to taxi services and over time will approach them.

Except for the cost to the taxi operators for their medallion. Since there is a a limited number of medallions and you need one to operate they tend to get transferred at great cost. For example a quick Google query for cost of taxi medallion nyc tells us that the current cost is down to $840,000 from a peak of $1.05 million in June 2013.

So the major cost of operation becomes the cost of financing the medallion. In fact (again according to Google) in most instances the medallions are owned by investment companies and leased to actual drivers.

Uber exists to disrupt the requirement for the medallions. They provide a lower friction billing system that makes it easier for both users and drivers to participate.

The ONLY people who are against Uber in the long term are the current owners of medallions. If Uber succeeds their investments will be valueless.

about two weeks ago
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Study: Police Body-Cams Reduce Unacceptable Use of Force

sl149q Re:Cameras only a partial solution (368 comments)

Part of the problem with the recent shooting of the kid with a toy gun was the cop's arriving in a car at full speed and stopping literally a few feet away from the kid. They then had no opportunity to assess the situation and instead pulled out the guns and shot him because they now where afraid they might get shot.

Since the park was empty it would have been far more appropriate to stop and assess from a distance.

So a (possibly) correct reaction to the circumstance they arrived at. But they arrived at that circumstance because of some very bad decisions made as they arrived.

about a month ago
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Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

sl149q Re:Land of the free (580 comments)

The movie will be released when they can find the backup copy of the official version!

When they went to do a final review on the release copy of the movie they discovered that there had been a final edit courtesy of the "hackers" that apparently changed the ending. Lets just say that Seth Rogan was not amused at how his character ended up.

about a month ago
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Microsoft To US Gov't: the World's Servers Are Not Yours For the Taking

sl149q Re:Hiding evidence (192 comments)

That is the point.

If the US court wants this data it needs to subpoena the document in an IRISH court and have the Irish division of Microsoft (which operates under Irish law) deliver it.

The current situation is that the US court wants to compel a company (owned by a US company) that is based and operated in Ireland to do something that may break Irish law.

about a month and a half ago
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Two Google Engineers Say Renewables Can't Cure Climate Change

sl149q Re:Environmentalists is why we still pump carbon (652 comments)

How is/was Fukushima a deadly reminder?

Other than perhaps some deaths from the mishandled (over reaction?) evacuation?

And projected deaths from (drum roll....) computer models on increased cancer deaths.

Compare that to anything else (disasters involving or manufacturing or operating other types of power plants) and nuclear still smells pretty rosy.

about 2 months ago
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In a Self-Driving Future, We May Not Even Want To Own Cars

sl149q Re:If you're not driving and not owning... (454 comments)

And the companies that will finance these fleets and deploy them really really really do not want them be considered as taxis which would bring them under (mostly) municipal taxi regimes.

You can bet that the taxi companies will be all for forcing all self driving cars to have a taxi medallion and a "driver" to ensure that it is safe for the passengers.

It is likely that Uber et al consider their current solution as a market maker to get them into this type of solution. Their app will work just as well for cars with or without drivers. And if cars without drivers are no longer taxis, so much the better from their perspective.

about 2 months ago
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In a Self-Driving Future, We May Not Even Want To Own Cars

sl149q Re:In a Self-Driving Future--- (454 comments)

Self driving cars in no way prevent you from being free and using the highway system to move around.

And for many people who cannot drive (too young, too old, disabilities) it makes it possible to do the same without having to hire someone to drive them around.

about 2 months ago
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In a Self-Driving Future, We May Not Even Want To Own Cars

sl149q Re:In a Self-Driving Future--- (454 comments)

There are still people who like to smoke in public and other people who would love to be able to drink and drive. Neither of those groups is terribly happy that they don't live in the fifties or sixties. Those of us who grew up in the fifties and sixties are happy that the fifties and sixties are over and that the smokers and drunk drivers are unhappy with life.

about 2 months ago
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In a Self-Driving Future, We May Not Even Want To Own Cars

sl149q Re:In a Self-Driving Future--- (454 comments)

People riding horses and bicycles don't usually kill too many people in traffic accidents.

People driving cars kill roughly 30,000 people a year in the US. As soon as a replacement shows up that can reduce that significantly there will be a huge push to implement it quickly. It will take about a for human drivers to get to same place as smokers and drunk drivers are today. Shunned and stigmatized because they make life dangerous and unpleasant for everybody else.

about 2 months ago
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In a Self-Driving Future, We May Not Even Want To Own Cars

sl149q Re:In a Self-Driving Future--- (454 comments)

And is more convenient. Book your UHaul on line and the truck drives itself to where you need it. You can fill it up and it will deliver its load to where it is needed (and you don't need to go with it.) Once unloaded it will deliver itself back to UHaul (or its next customer.)

So you save time. And in many instances day or multi day rentals can be reduced in length so can be cheaper. But UHaul probably can keep the vehicle rented out more often so still get more revenue per vehicle.

about 2 months ago
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In a Self-Driving Future, We May Not Even Want To Own Cars

sl149q Re:In a Self-Driving Future--- (454 comments)

Also, parking lots can get a lot more efficient. Cars can self park them selves 4-5 deep. Any time one in the middle needs to leave the ones on the outside can just unpark themselves long enough to let it out. So your parking lot density about doubles.

about 2 months ago
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In a Self-Driving Future, We May Not Even Want To Own Cars

sl149q Re:In a Self-Driving Future--- (454 comments)

Cheap and ubiquitous Self Driving Cars means that there can be (unlike medallioned taxis that are limited to ensure cash flow for the owners and drivers) as many as needed. You leave for work at 8:00 so you have a standing order, and the car arrives at your front doorstep at 7:55. It drops you off at work and then drives itself to some other customer.

If you really want to own your own, you can even have it parked somewhere else at night (where it can recharge, get serviced, cleaned etc) and have IT arrive at 7:55 to pick you up and drop you at the front door where you work. Then drive to the closest cheap parking and self park itself. Or maybe drive home and take the kids to school first.

about 2 months ago
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How 4H Is Helping Big Ag Take Over Africa

sl149q Re:Alternative? (377 comments)

Yes, but.... with all the "greenies" also trying to force the food chains into dropping GMO at the same time... it looks like GMO labelling is just a way to make the green agenda that much easier to accomplish.

First we scare people into fearing GMO. Then we force the food to be labelled GMO so that people "will have a choice".

Some choice. Personally I would just buy anything labelled GMO. But I fear that I won't have the choice because the food retailers will have dropped those because of lobbying from the greens.

about 2 months ago
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How 4H Is Helping Big Ag Take Over Africa

sl149q Re:Alternative? (377 comments)

I'll say. I avoid "organic" labelled products because I know they are a rip off. More money for generally the same or less quality.

Simply avoid organic. It's easy to do. You'll save money!

about 2 months ago
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New NXP SoC Gives Android Its Apple Pay

sl149q Re:So Android DOESN'T have an Apple Pay equivalent (122 comments)

The only people that won't like this are the companies pushing CurrentC and the scammers stealing credit card numbers.

Its a good thing for both Apple and Android users as it will help push the marketplace towards supporting sane and safe and private credit card transactions.

about 3 months ago
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UN Climate Change Panel: It's Happening, and It's Almost Entirely Man's Fault

sl149q Re:Zero emissions (695 comments)

And how is that working for you....

There is more coal in the ground than we can burn over the next few centuries.

about 3 months ago
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UN Climate Change Panel: It's Happening, and It's Almost Entirely Man's Fault

sl149q Re:Obviously. (695 comments)

Well China is fast on its way to becoming the wealthiest nation in the world. So lets wait about ten years and then try and convince them to pay for it out of their pocket change.

about 3 months ago
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Space Tourism Isn't Worth Dying For

sl149q Thrill seekers (594 comments)

Its no different than any other dangerous sport.

The death rate for first time climbers on Mount Everest is something like 5-10% (lower now, used to be higher.) People going a second time have a better survival rate but the percentages are still single digits for deaths. And paid guides (Sherpas) get killed every year.

By comparison to adventure space flight, adventure mountain climbing is just a bit cheaper. Do we condemn one and not the other?

How about base jumping? Or even sky diving? A small, but consistent number of planes crash delivering people to the jump point. So adventure sky diving? Do we condemn it as well?

Pretty much any sport we engage in has its dangerous elements and people die all the time (albeit slightly less spectacularly!)

about 3 months ago
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Virginia Court: LEOs Can Force You To Provide Fingerprint To Unlock Your Phone

sl149q Can you be compelled to disclose which finger? (328 comments)

You cannot withhold your finger print.

You can withhold something which is in your mind. E.g. a pin.

Since only one (or two?) of your fingers unlock your phone. Your knowledge of the finger print possibly qualifies as secret knowledge. And multiple attempts will ultimately prevent use of finger prints.

The police would not (I think) be able to force you to disclose. They would be free to instruct you to use a specific finger and hope that it unlocks. But if it fails I don't think they would have any recourse.

So don't use your thumbs or index fingers. Which would be their starting point.

about 3 months ago

Submissions

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Google Government Request App

sl149q sl149q writes  |  more than 3 years ago

sl149q (1537343) writes "While Google may or may not be the living up to their do no evil mantra it appears that they are trying to. This new Google App: http://www.google.com/governmentrequests/ is their attempt to show how many requests they have received from governments around the world. These can be requests to censor or requests about users or users data. This is a welcome response compared to other ISP's and Telecoms that have routinely denied or ignored requests for any information of this type. See their announcement here: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/04/greater-transparency-around-government.html for some background."
Link to Original Source
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WSJ: Time for a Climate Change Plan B

sl149q sl149q writes  |  more than 4 years ago

sl149q (1537343) writes "Whether you believe in Climate Change or Climategate the problem is that no one in the first or third world is really willing to actually pay enough to change things fast enough to make much difference. The bigger question is whether it is better to spend money to mitigate one problem (CO2) or solve other problems.

This from an article by Nigel Lawson in the WSJ article (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704107604574607793378860698.html) : "The reasons for the complete and utter failure of Copenhagen are both fundamental and irresolvable. The first is that the economic cost of decarbonizing the world's economies is massive, and of at least the same order of magnitude as any benefits it may conceivably bring in terms of a cooler world in the next century."

And: "The reason we use carbon-based energy is not the political power of the oil lobby or the coal industry. It is because it is far and away the cheapest source of energy at the present time and is likely to remain so, not forever, but for the foreseeable future."

And if we do need a conspiracy theory it is helpful to remember that 27 out of 50 of the worlds largest oil companies are state owned or controlled (http://www.energyintel.com/DocumentDetail.asp?document_id=245527)."

Link to Original Source

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