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The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

zerofoo A potential class action suit (595 comments)

Evidently enough people had similar complaints across many brands - enough to warrant a potential class action lawsuit:

http://www.slate.com/articles/...

The court decided against hearing the case, but there were over 23,000 complaints for one manufacturer. That tells me there is something wrong with the design of many HE machines.

4 days ago
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The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

zerofoo New ones are mostly plastic. (595 comments)

My particular appliances, while steel on the outside, are almost entirely plastic on the inside. The large drum you can't see in most washers is plastic.

The guys that took my machines away didn't even want them for scrap. They said the little recyclables they contain are not worth the hassle.

My new machines, however, are porcelain coated steel.

4 days ago
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The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

zerofoo The Government also ruined my washer and dryer (595 comments)

I recently tossed a set of 4 year old Bosch HE front-loading washers and dryers. The washer was full of mold and the dryer needed 2-3 cycles to adequately dry clothes.

I performed all the preventative steps periodically running a hot cycle, running bleach and cleaning agents through the machine, leaving the door open after every use, cleaning out the dryer vent twice per year...etc.

None of it mattered. The service tech says these problems are common to all HE machines. They simply do not use enough water at a high enough temperature to adequately flush the machine. They dryers are also garbage as the manufacturers are forced to use small burners and short cycle times to meet energy efficiency requirements.

My mom's 25 year old Kenmores washed and dried clothes without complaint for many years - now we are saving the planet by putting crappy appliances in a landfill every few years.

I finally opted for a non-HE washer and dryer (Speed Queen if anyone cares). They are old-school commercial-duty devices. No WiFi, no touch screens, no weather or twitter feed - simply clean clothes in half the time.

Yup they use more water and gas, but I wouldn't have it any other way.

I was told that by 2016 or 2017 these units will no longer be made thanks to more efficiency regs. It's madness.

How does this relate to CFLs and LED bulbs - well - I like my LED bulbs - my CFLs were almost all garbage that lasted a year or two. Most CFLs that I bought didn't last anywhere near their rated 7 year life.

It would have been better to simply give people economic incentives to buy the more efficient bulbs instead of being forced to buy the bulbs.

5 days ago
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Dealership Commentator: Tesla's Going To Win In Every State

zerofoo Spot on (156 comments)

I buy damn near everything over the internet. I get exactly what I want from a competitive marketplace. Why can't I buy a car to my exact specifications direct from the manufacturer? If Amazon can deliver almost anything to my front door, why can't GM, Ford and Toyota deliver a car to my door?

about two weeks ago
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Apple Outrages Users By Automatically Installing U2's Album On Their Devices

zerofoo Google Play Music anyone? (610 comments)

There is a ton of stuff in my Google Play Music library that Google thinks I might like. It's damn annoying and clutters up my library.

My Pandora channels have suggested channels at the bottom. I don't want them, but they are there.

This bothersome phenomenon is not unique to Apple.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Advice On Building a Firewall With VPN Capabilities?

zerofoo If you don't want to build your own - Cisco (238 comments)

I bought an ASA-5505 on Amazon for around $500. For that price you get a firewall that is used by many big companies. You can get your feet wet in the Cisco world - which could help if you ever need to look for a job, and it handles VPN nicely.

If you've never worked with Cisco before, it will take you some time to get up to speed on the cisco way though.

The only drawback with this box is that the interfaces are 100 Mbps only.

about three weeks ago
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Microsoft Killing Off Windows Phone Brand Name In Favor of Just Windows

zerofoo They may not know any better (352 comments)

During my consulting gigs, I found very few windows users that actually knew anything different. They all have windows at work (and someone to fix it when it shits the bed).

So far, every single person that has migrated to Mac OS from windows, tells me that the experience is much better on the Mac side. What people usually notice is how little Mac OS interrupts your workflow. Windows is constantly interrupting with updates, or crashed print queues, or explorer windows that simply stop working.

Windows has been patched together for so many years, that a complete redesign is necessary, yet Microsoft is afraid to cut the old stuff loose. MS can never progress if they aren't willing to let the past go.

about three weeks ago
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Microsoft Killing Off Windows Phone Brand Name In Favor of Just Windows

zerofoo Not late - just low quality (352 comments)

I had Windows CE and Windows Mobile devices for YEARS before I got my first iOS or Android device. I also had Palm devices before then as well.

They were good for their time, but iOS introduced a touch interface that actually worked with your finger and a real web browser on a mobile device.

Why Microsoft couldn't get that together during the 5 year period before iOS speaks to their incompetence.

about three weeks ago
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Amazon's Plan To Storm the Cable Industry's Castle

zerofoo All hostages to the last mile providers (85 comments)

It doesn't matter how much content amazon has, nor how many datacenters they have. Amazon, Apple, Google...etc are all hostages to the last mile providers. Their business models depend on that last mile for delivery of their product.

In the end, the UPS/FedEx model will probably prevail where content providers will pay a delivery company for delivery of their product.

Google seems to be the only company with the foresight to start building their own last mile network. Unfortunately, at the rate they are going my great great grandkids might have Google Fiber available in their area.

about a month ago
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U.S. Senator: All Cops Should Wear Cameras

zerofoo It could help answer some questions (643 comments)

Was Michael Brown surrendering with his hands up when he was shot, or was he attacking the police officer? Body cam video would have gone a long way to answering that question.

When investigating complex matters like police shootings, more evidence is better. There is no way you can convince me that less data would make the investigation better.

about a month ago
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Cisco To Slash Up To 6,000 Jobs -- 8% of Its Workforce -- In "Reorganization"

zerofoo Re:He's also advocating for tax hikes for the rich (207 comments)

The rate is flat.

The amount in actual dollars is not.

"Progressivity" in the tax system means higher earners pay more. I argue that even with a flat tax - those that earn more pay more.

Everything else is semantics.

about a month and a half ago
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Cisco To Slash Up To 6,000 Jobs -- 8% of Its Workforce -- In "Reorganization"

zerofoo Re: Everything hits poor people harder (207 comments)

Social security is not a capitalistic system. It even has the word "social" in the name.

Let's just call social security what it is supposed to be...insurance against poverty in old age.

The problem with SS is that people that don't need the insurance benefit are drawing from it. It would be better to treat the entire thing as an insurance policy...not a defined benefit, but one that exists if a set of conditions is met.

about a month and a half ago
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Cisco To Slash Up To 6,000 Jobs -- 8% of Its Workforce -- In "Reorganization"

zerofoo Everything hits poor people harder (207 comments)

Poor people also pay a disproportionate part of their income on food, clothing, energy, housing and transportation. Should all of those things be cheaper for poor people as well?

Should I have done an income analysis on my neighborhood and if I found that I was on the low-end of the income spectrum, should I have demanded a lower price on my house simply because I make less than my neighbors?

I understand charity for the poor, but demanding that poor people pay less for everything simply because they are poor defeats the point of a market economy. If you are going to do that, why not go all the way to a state planned economy?

I'll tell you why that sucks. Capitalism, even with all its problems, is the best way to distribute limited resources in a world with unlimited demand.

about a month and a half ago
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Cisco To Slash Up To 6,000 Jobs -- 8% of Its Workforce -- In "Reorganization"

zerofoo He's also advocating for tax hikes for the rich (207 comments)

I get that bashing the rich, while pitying the poor, gives everyone a feeling of moral superiority, the parent post did mention taxing capital gains the same as income.

So if you are a rich guy paying 15% tax on your capital gains investments, taxing that as regular income could push the rate well beyond 25%. That's a tax increase or "broadening the tax base".

Taxes should be flat across the spectrum. You shouldn't get a break because you are extremely rich or poor. Besides, a flat tax is naturally progressive. If you make more, you pay more.

Better still, let's not tax income or property. Since all money in the economy is eventually spent, let's simply tax consumption and fund our society that way. Everyone consumes - those that consume less will pay less tax.

about a month and a half ago
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Synolocker 0-Day Ransomware Puts NAS Files At Risk

zerofoo Synology history of security vulnerabilities (150 comments)

A while back synology had a problem with unauthorized bitcoin miners running on their devices:

http://www.cvedetails.com/vuln...

There seems to be a culture of fast and loose with regards to software development at Synology.

I love my Synology NAS, but you have to be nuts to put these things on the internet.

about 2 months ago
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Alcatel-Lucent's XG-FAST Pushes 10,000Mbps Over Copper Phone Lines

zerofoo Won't solve many problems in the US (149 comments)

The last mile of copper in the US is in an abysmal state. Telcos like Verizon are laying their fiber network and abandoning their low-cost copper network.

In Princeton, NJ we can barely make reliable, noise-free, voice calls over copper. T1s over copper are similarly disappointing.

I doubt pushing even higher speed data over this terrible infrastructure will result in a satisfactory experience - and the minute you need to replace a cable, why not lay fiber?

about 3 months ago
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Google To Take On Apple's CarPlay

zerofoo Yeah, I'll sit this war out. (126 comments)

I can't afford to buy a new car every 18 months to keep up with the A.D.D. that exists in the mobile product arena.

I'll buy in when the SAE adopts a standard protocol interface for in-car infotainment. For now, bluetooth does me just fine.

about 3 months ago
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Intel Confronts a Big Mobile Challenge: Native Compatibility

zerofoo Re: Symptom of a much bigger problem (230 comments)

Yeah, now they are competitive, but the 5 year headstart that Unix on ARM has will be very tough to undo.

The mobile market is very solidly Android and iOS on ARM, and will continue to be so for the foreseeable future.

about 4 months ago
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Intel Confronts a Big Mobile Challenge: Native Compatibility

zerofoo Symptom of a much bigger problem (230 comments)

Microsoft and Intel spent 20 years building bigger. Intel made bigger more complex silicon and Microsoft bloat happily expanded to fill that bigger silicon.

I remember times in the 90s where I was upgrading CPUs for clients that were 6 months old - crazy.

These two companies where wholly unprepared for the mobile revolution that required small and efficient. Neither company could shrink their offerings down fast enough. Unix on ARM was there to fill the need.

I say to both companies - tough cookies. Had they had an eye toward efficiency instead of bloat from the very beginning, they would have been much better prepared for the mobile/app revolution.

about 4 months ago
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Why NASA's Budget "Victory" Is Anything But

zerofoo Government preventing kids from learning to read (267 comments)

This is timely. I spent the better part of last night in a zoning and planning board meeting. I'm the IT director for a couple of small private schools for Kids with Dyslexia. One of our schools is currently located in the basement of a really old church. It works for us now, but our lease is running out and we need more space to grow.

We found a generous landlord willing to lease us space (way below market rates) in a brand new building - it's beautiful. It is part of a small financial complex, and the space is perfect for our needs. This landlord sees this as a temporary growth space, and he is offering to renovate a larger abandoned school for us over the next two years as our permanent home. He has a philanthropic foundation that would fund the renovation.

But there is one problem. The current (temporary) building has commercial/retail/office/daycare zoning. It does not currently have school zoning as an approved use.

We tried to argue the fact that currently "daycare" is an approved use, and teaching little kids how to read isn't a significantly different use. They didn't want to hear it. The sticking point? Parking. The landlord needs to completely redo a traffic/parking study to show how taking a few parking spaces from an enormous parking lot and dedicating them as "pickup and drop-off" spaces will impact the remainder of the parking lot.

Keep in mind, the entire parking lot and complex is privately owned by the landlord - there is no public parking anywhere in this complex. Presumably any parking problems would be the business of the tenants and the landlord.

That's what we thought, be we were wrong. The town denied our application and that means there will be no summer program this year.

So tell me - Government preventing a bunch of kids getting summer reading enrichment over a handful (3) of parking spaces is a good thing?

Sorry - people that extoll the virtues of Government have not had complex enough dealings with government to know any better.

about 4 months ago

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