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Comment Makes sense, if the price is right (Score 4, Insightful) 68

I think there's probably quite a decent niche market for this product. Some people like to use a phone primarily as, you know, a phone. They'll be attracted to the extended battery life, and won't be bothered by a bit less processing power and slightly lower resolution. Some people use smartphones as fairly basic tools, not as gaming platforms / computer substitutes / fashion accessories.

Comment Re:Rose tinted glasses (Score 1) 476

Seriously this article makes it sound like life just after a devastating conflict is better than economic prosperity because most people are equally poor.

That's pretty fucked up, and I'm calling BS.

Even the title of TFA, (which it seems you didn't read or didn't understand), contradicts your interpretation: "The Only Thing, Historically, That's Curbed Inequality: Catastrophe". Nowhere in the article does it say, or even imply AFAICT, that "life just after a devastating conflict is better than economic prosperity" - it only says that economic inequality is reduced. Therefore, you are the one making the value judgment, not the article. Nice strawman there.

Comment Re:Kowtowing (Score 4, Insightful) 406

... When you can get news that you like from nearly anywhere and for free, why pay for it and why subject yourself to a New York City viewpoint from barely educated and mind warped fanatics?

"News that you like" is the operative phrase there. I'd like to think that it used to be different, bit I'm not sure it ever was. Maybe the majority always gravitated to the news they 'liked' in favour of the news that did its best to be accurate and unbiased, and maybe the generally more accurate and unbiased news of 40 years ago obscured the fact.

There's so much at stake now for governments and corporations wanting to control the narrative. 'News', (and I use the term very loosely), is often a make-or-break thing when it comes to elections, IPO's, product launches, sales numbers, law suits, new legislation, and even criminal cases, (to name a few); so simply reporting the facts and adding a bit of insightful analysis is kind of obsolete. The distinctions among news, editorials, and advertising have all but disappeared. If people already have a tendency to choose the (um...let's call it 'reportage') that they like, regardless of its accuracy or relevance, then the market is ripe for hucksters and con men of every stripe looking to sway the opinions of a constituency or a nation. It's no accident that Kellyanne Conjob coined the phrase 'alternative facts'. She was pilloried for it, and rightly so, but in one sense she was just pointing out the nature of today's reality, which is that, for a distressingly large number of people, fact is no different from opinion, and is simply a matter of preference. Our culture seems to have made 'critical faculty' a pejorative term; for the history of why that's so, read John Taylor Gatto, among others.

In an era when people can hear the 'news' that they prefer, for little or no money, does the NYT have any chance of long-term survival?

Comment Re:First page of Google less and less relevant... (Score 1) 103

Maybe I will in the future directly go to the second and not even check the first page at all...

I turn off all of Google's misguided and inept attempts to be 'helpful', (suggestions, filtering, etc), and set the number of hits to 100 per page. I'd have it higher than that if I could. Scrolling is much easier and has better flow than paginating anyway. So my "first page" results are much more comprehensive than most people's anyway. Looking at Google results 10 hits at a time sucks ass - once you try it set to 100 per page, you'll never go back. Unless you're on a really slow connection...

Comment Re:This won't be popular... (Score 1) 510

Nobody cares what's on your stupid phone. Border guards are mostly worried about - wait for it - protecting the border.

Hey - if nobody cares what's on travellers' phones, why are they so hell-bent on examining the contents? As for "protecting the border", did you REALLY write that with a straight face?

I'm not saying "you should unlock your phone because only criminals have something to hide". Not at all. I'm saying it's like a proctology exam. Yeah it sucks, and in an ideal world we shouldn't have to do it.

Dude! Do you hear yourself? Tell me honestly now - if you were visiting a friend in the hospital and were forced to either have a proctology exam on the spot, or be detained for an arbitrary amount of time and thereafter face the third degree every time you tried to re-enter the hospital - wouldn't you be pissed? Comparing the two as you just did is totally ludicrous, and you should know better.

But the best thing for all involved is to just man up and get it over with, then get on with your life. Not everything is worth making a federal case about.

Really? Roll over and play dead - that's the best you've got? Sure - just suck it up, keep sucking it up, and advise others to do the same. Because that doesn't contribute AT ALL to the transition between routine violation of freedoms and rights, and full-on dictatorship. Get a clue man!

Comment The dog ate my homework! (Score 3, Insightful) 170

It's really sad that this happened, but really, sending something irreplaceable, (and arguably culturally important), by POST for Christ's sake, strikes me as irresponsible. I know courier companies lose stuff too, but I highly doubt that the automation equivalent of "the dog ate my homework" would be offered as an explanation. And if the package had been lost by a courier company, I suspect there would a better chance of it being found sooner or later.

Comment Re:Chicken breeds preserved for posterity (Score 1) 33

Are you sure that the difference you're detecting isn't down to what they're eating? Gallena de patio commonly consumes a far more varied diet than a factory-farmed, never-sees-the-sun-but-we-can-still-call-it-cage-free bird.

Good point - hadn't thought of it. Thanks.

Comment Chicken breeds preserved for posterity (Score 4, Interesting) 33

How about 'chicken breeds preserved so chicken actually tastes like chicken again'? I'm an old fart, and chicken tastes vastly more bland than it did when I was a kid. And no, it's not just the 'everything was better back then' syndrome. When I was in Guyana I ate meat from fully-grown chickens that weren't all that much bigger than just the breasts of the chickens we get here, and its flavour took me back to the chicken I used to eat as a kid.

The chickens we buy in supermarkets have been bred to attain maximum weight in the minimum amount of time possible; they have also been bred to have a higher survival rate during transport, and to be more disease resistant. With these genetic alterations, they just taste bland - rather like most tomatoes today, and for much the same reasons.

Comment If his phone can easily be hacked, (Score 2, Insightful) 507

then it very probably has ALREADY been hacked. The reason we haven't heard about it is a), it's been covered up or b), it hasn't been discovered yet, and the hacker is laying low in order to collect as much dirt as possible and/or do as much covert damage as possible. Trump as President is too high-profile, too controversial, too thoroughly disliked, and too valuable as a potential blackmail asset, for there NOT to have already been multiple hacking attempts by serious players with deep pockets. If he IS using anything like a stock Android phone, it's very unlikely that he hasn't already been pwned at least once.

Comment Re:Because Human Nature (Score 2) 387

...Most normal humans don't want to sit around and do nothing, they want to be productive and make personal goals, balance risk versus security, have control of their destiny, and be able to provide better for their families than they did for themselves. Normal humans don't want to have the same job as everyone else, don't want to live in the same kind of house, wear the same kinds of clothing, eat the same foods, etc.. etc.. etc... The whole point of every story of Utopia ever written is that Utopia CAN NOT EXIST! Individuality is part of being a human, and individual liberty is the normal state of a human.

You should check out Marshall Brain's 'Manna'. The point of its utopia is that it could be made to exist, and the people who live in it are as varied and individualistic as they care to be. I find one of the premises of his utopia a bit far-fetched and a bit creepy, but that's probably only because a), I'm old and b), I haven't lived through the huge displacement caused by ubiquitous automation and AI. He makes a compelling case for what we might be if we do inventive and sensible things in response to our own sweeping innovations. He imagines a future wherein people lead meaningful, satisfying, creative, and productive lives according to their best own lights, freed from the burden of having to work to secure food, clothing, shelter, and spurious social status.

Comment Re:Great. (Score 1) 225

I haven't updated firefox in a long time. Sadly, it no longer even works in my corporate environment.

You really should give Pale Moon a try - it's our last best hope for maintaining the almost-extinct Firefox ecosystem that we've come to know, love, and rely on. And because it incorporates Firefox security updates, (at least so far), it may even work in your corporate environment.

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