201 posts • joined Thursday 20th August 2009 14:06 GMT
Possible source of contamination
"Hey, minimum-wage drudge, how'd you like to make a $1,000 just to slip this thumb drive in when no one's looking?"
This study seems to back up something I've posited for over 30 years, now, that had all and sundry looking at me like I was crazy: that men can be either logical OR emotional, though they can switch rapidly between the two. Women cannot separate the two.
I drink strong coffee —freshly ground French roast, for preference— but only as the first meal of the day. (I will, on rare occasion, after a good dinner, have one with liqueur. Or if I'm falling-over tired during the day...) For the rest, I generally drink tea. It's said there's the same amount of caffeine in both, so I'm at a loss to explain.
Does that answer your questions?
On a more serious note...
Rep. James Sensenbrenner, one of the fathers of the USAPATRIOT Act, which made all this possible (read: probable) has now come out and said the NSA has gone too far and, with Sen. Patrick Leahy, has crafted the USA Freedom Act, which ends bulk collection under Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act. Whether this will have any value remains to be seen. Whether he's playing to the American crowd and gives a rat's about the rest of the world, likewise.
Coals to Newcastle?
"Lord" Timothy Dexter, historic leading light of Newburyport, Massachusetts, made his great fortune by (on a drunken bet) sending a shipload of coal to Newcastle. Fortunately (sic) it arrived during a coal strike.
Cheese to the moon? Maybe, just maybe...
Doesn't seem so unusual to me
As a long-time observer of dogs, I note (for instance) that they all stop at the "No Dogs in Cemetery" sign by my house to leave messages, which I refer to as p-mail.
A great fit!
I once bought a piece of Lenovo kit and it was a piece of crap!
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
Possibly, an obit is not the place for this
but there is a contradictory story about the rise of PC-DOS. According to the 1996 documentary Triumph of the Nerds, which featured interviews with most of the principals, when Gates was first approached, he told IBM to talk to Scott MacNealy. When that worthy failed to respond, they went back to Gates, who agreed [insert QDOS story here]. However, when presented with the massive IBM contract, he threw it in the trash, preferring his own simpler one that made Microsoft the powerhouse it became. (As I remember, Bill Gates, Sr. is a lawyer...)
I, not having been there, do not know which is true.
Foxes guarding the henhouse?
I don't think so. Any entrenched entity making money on tracking will naturally a) be against DNT and b) would dearly love to pass a sham of a standard so they can appear to be on the side of the angels while cavorting with Mammon and Moloch.
For myself, I would much rather have a tool designed by those whose sole raison d'etre was creating a working tool, not just the appearance of one...
Re: Unwarranted conclusion
I really have to wonder whether this is a difference in national trading laws or a very limited situation. In the Martha Stewart case, the officers of ImClone knew a drug had failed an FDA [Food and Drug Administration] test and sold their stock. So far, so good: this meets your second example. However, Stewart was told to sell by her broker (who knew about it from the insider trades). She was found guilty, despite having no fiduciary duty.
Re: Unwarranted conclusion
My apologies. I should have Googled it, rather than using my faulty memory. According to that good service, it was Harold MacMillan.
First, a couple of disclaimers:
I'm writing from the States, so my knowledge of particulars about European taxation, et al, is sorely limited. I've not read the papers that resulted in the prize, only the sort of precis one finds in more general interest publications, such as this fine one.
That said, I have a couple of bones to pick with the author as to his descriptions of market transactions. I don't know if it's true across the pond, but here, if one does trade on information not generally available, it's called insider trading and is illegal (ask Martha Stewart). Trading, in and of itself, does not bring new information to market —and automated trading certainly does not— except to add to price history, which (as the required documents must state) are no guarantee of future performance. In point of fact, they're —at best— a rough indicator [as in, the bosses seem to have known what they were doing last quarter; they'll probably continue to do so. Except for, as Churchill noted, "Events, dear boy, events."]. As for the housing crisis, while you cannot, strictly speaking, short a house, there are many other instruments that make this sort of transaction possible. Most notably, the mortgages on said houses were infamously "sliced and diced" and sold as shares. Those could be shorted, and in fact were, even to the extent that the market makers did it, betting against their own customers. Lastly, I made a reply above regarding the 2001 Nobel Prize, which in many ways contradicts the conclusions drawn in this regard.
None of this has to do with a Robin Hood tax, but GIGO. In my estimation, one might have some small effects (both positive and negative, and dependent on the specifics), but it's really like emptying the ashtrays on a falling airliner. The entire economic structure of our world (insofar as we can consider it a single entity) is a house of cards. [By this, I mean the monetary overlay; not the intrinsic goods and services.] All these machinations serve merely to keep the game going — not to provide for the welfare (in the old sense) of the world, which supposedly is the point.
I agree. The prize went to Joseph Stiglitz in 2001 for showing that markets are inefficient, because both sides of a transaction seldom have the same, complete information. This would seem to be diametrically opposed to the conclusion that Mr. Worstall derives.
I have to imagine they studied slow motion films of cats running, but this is not a replicant. At full speed, cats front and back legs cross and at one point in the gait, no legs are touching the ground. Possibly, it would need to go much faster to achieve this...
You haven't thought this through, Tim, have you?
The one item missing from your analysis is money. When we automate jobs, displacing people from factory workers to cashiers to —who knows?— maybe drivers, we still insist they have an income in order to buy goods and services, but those jobs for the less skilled are dwindling to gone. Meanwhile (here in the States, though much less so over the pond) the cost of education has resulted students leaving college hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt, looking for a dwindling number of jobs to pay it off. One analyst recently predicted that college will be only for the rich. Medical expenses have risen exponentially, such that they are the leading cause of bankruptcy. Obamacare may take care of this, but I doubt it. It's too complex and is, in my estimation, an insurance industry subsidy. Food and fuel costs, over the shorter term, have risen greatly. In my neighborhood, food has gone up 50% just in the last year or so. In 1965, my mom fed a family of four and a dog on $10/wk. It costs me, today, $50—60/wk to feed just myself. While fuel is down from previous highs, and natural gas from fracking has increased supply and held down costs, compared to pre-1973, costs have risen some 1200%. 'Alternative' fuels and conservation have made inroads (more than some would like to admit) and have room for growth, so there's hope there... Housing, too, has risen. Mortgage costs used be considered to be 25% of income; they're now 33%. The house I bought in 1978 for $57,000 (which left me feeling cheated, as three years previously, a friend bought one for $23,000) is now worth around $150,000. The one I bought in 1999 for $110,000 is now worth around $175,000 — and this WITH the great housing collapse. In real terms, worker wages have not increased since 1974 (this does not apply for CEOs, et al. While over the span of nearly a century, your statistics are true; over a shorter period (since the 1970's) they are dead wrong.
All this goes to show, further, that (if we consider the intrinsic value of things to remain stable — the house is still the house, a pound of cod still has the same nutritional value), that what has changed is the value of money. My stepfather was fond of telling how his father took him to the best men's store in Baltimore and bought him a complete suit of clothes, including shirt, shoes and tie for a $20 gold piece. With the change, they went to dinner and a show. It's still true, as he said, that if had that $20 gold piece today, he could do the same thing! Maybe he'd even go home with money in the pocket!
But the larger point is that we still require some means to acquire the medium of exchange, and until society changes (drastically), that means work or the dole. When the number of jobs decreases, while the population increases, the pressures are obvious. The Government is currently debating just how much of the social safety net we should eliminate. The cutters think we should work, but the jobs are lacking and we are not all so entrepreneurial. A study released today shows that the income of the top percentiles has increased, that of the dwindling middle class has remained steady or fallen, and the bottom percentiles have all fallen back. A bit of Googling will prove this.
The future you describe could be bright, if we can get our act together. I've written at length about this topic, and you can read it at http://www.lulu.com/shop/c-alexander-cohen/the-root-of-all-evil/ebook/product-17377866.html
Here in the States, while there are still doctors, much of the day-to-day work they used to do is done by Physician's Assistants (PAs) and Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs). Meanwhile, the practice is swamped with (what used to be) paperwork, though now it's all digital...
A nurse said, "Nurses cure. Doctors diagnose."
One doesn't need a missile. Watercraft will do, or (depending on the size of said device), a disguised traveler with one or more large packages...and sometimes, just the threat is enough.
Ain't it always the way?
Complexity doesn't necessarily add security — sometimes it adds a way in. You know what the hardest lock to crack is? A mortice lock — one where a bar slides into a hole!
Yes, the Obama Administration is at it again, with another relief act for insurance companies. How about this: take critical infrastructure OFF the net! . But no, we're fixated on monetizing failure...
No Office? Ahem!
Really, those folks should do some research. While it isn't Office, per se, there IS a FREE app called SmartOffice. Plainly, they've got their analysis wrong. IMHO, the reasons are 1) market saturation 2) high price compared with competitors and 3) falling behind in technology (though that could change in a heartbeat — stay tuned...)
RE: King Leopold's Ghost
...and look how well Congo has done!
Feel free to dismiss the following...
About 30 years ago, some New Age-y friends of mine played an audio tape for me of a lecture by a diver who was swimming around the Bahamas after a major storm. (Note that I am not saying I believe this:) He claimed to have found the remains of a city, temporarily uncovered by the storm. In the center was some kind of hall with a round table in the center. In the center of the table was a large crystal with lines incised in it, which he brought back and was apparently showing at the lecture. It would mimic whatever was shown it, like a striped card (not in the sense of reflection — the image remained after the card was removed). He posited it was some kind of memory device or display. I haven't been able to find this story anywhere else.
I hardly think that number qualifies.
Steve Jobs was NOT a technology CEO — he was a salesman/designer who recognized good tech. As a salesman, he was among the best...
I remember that in D.H. Lawrence's The Plumed Serpent the clocks were destroyed and replaced with a guy in the clock tower who would announce "halfway up the hill of the morning" and "halfway down the hill of the afternoon," etc. In a larger sense, in Tracy Kidder's Soul of a New Machine, one of the engineers quit, leaving a resignation note which read, "I quit. I am going to a commune in Vermont and will deal with no unit of time shorter than a season."
Re: Theory v Practice
While I don't fully understand it either, I can tell you this about Theory v Practice:
In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.
In practice, there is a great deal of difference between theory and practice.
Mine's the one I borrowed from the Emperor's new collection, with the cat in the pocket...
Can this be so?
"Newly-appearing subduction zones are, Dr Duarte added, to be expected as part of Earth's “super-continent cycle” that sees much of earth's land come together in very large continents..."
And here I thought the continents were moving apart since the days of Gondwanaland and Pangea...
Re: People are so F'en dumb
I often ask people who aver that surveillance is OK because they have nothing to hide if they have curtains...
Re: Orwell vs Huxley
It's interesting to note that the US public school system was designed by Horace Mann to fit the sons and daughters of captains of industry to be captains of industry, and the sons and daughters of line workers to be line workers — and this in the early 19th century!
Nothing new here
I remember reading 15 years ago something about using Palm Pilots for this purpose, so I Googled it: http://www.xent.com/FoRK-archive/nov98/0131.html
Thus disproving once again
that "free markets make free men." Bah!
What's the use?
Could be just another piece of must(not)-have gear with no practical purpose, but check out http://asktog.com/atc/apple-iwatch/ for some interesting possibilities.
Forward! Into the Past!
Next thing you know, you'll be able save your callers having to deal with 'call waiting' by replacing it with a pleasant beeping tone!
Forecasts (for want of a better word) I've heard over the last 20 years were for 4°C, square in the middle of the "controversy." At that temperature, sea level is set to rise by meters. We would reach a point where feedback will make it impossible to mitigate — we can only adapt or die.
I was reading The Register. Is the denialist panel off on holiday?
(Actually, congrats on publishing findings that go against your bias.)
"Now look ear"
Shouldn't that be a camera, then?
Just what I'd expect from those greedy f$¢!s... I haven't bought Exxon gas (and later, Mobil) since the Valdez disaster. Do you know that despite adjudication they still haven't paid reparations?
When I hear 'flexible display'
I think of the "phones" designed for Earth:Final Conflict, and it's cousins.
You think that's fun...try this!
[Reposted from CrooksandLiars.com]
March 28, 2013 07:00 AM
Walmart Wants You To Deliver Their Packages -- For Free
By Susie Madrak
Jesus, it's just too early in the day for this kind of insanity. Yes, you would <http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/28/us-retail-walmart-delivery-idUSBRE92R03820130328>"share" your car with Walmart's packages and they would give you a small discount to cover the cost of gas, but they wouldn't "share" your insurance costs if you get into an accident on the way, and you certainly wouldn't get paid for your time. In other words, you get to work FOR FREE! Feel the oligarchy!
(Reuters) - Wal-Mart Stores Inc is considering a radical plan to have store customers deliver packages to online buyers, a new twist on speedier delivery services that the company hopes will enable it to better compete with Amazon.com Inc.
Tapping customers to deliver goods would put the world's largest retailer squarely in middle of a new phenomenon sometimes known as "crowd-sourcing," or the "sharing economy."
Wal-Mart is making a big push to ship online orders directly from stores, hoping to cut transportation costs and gain an edge over Amazon and other online retailers, which have no physical store locations. Wal-Mart does this at 25 stores currently, but plans to double that to 50 this year and could expand the program to hundreds of stores in the future.
Wal-Mart currently uses carriers like FedEx Corp for delivery from stores - or, in the case of a same-day delivery service called Walmart To Go that is being tested in five metro areas, its own delivery trucks.
"I see a path to where this is crowd-sourced," Joel Anderson, chief executive of Walmart.com in the United States, said in a recent interview with Reuters.
[...] Wal-Mart has millions of customers visiting its stores each week. Some of these shoppers could tell the retailer where they live and sign up to drop off packages for online customers who live on their route back home, Anderson explained.
Wal-Mart would offer a discount on the customers' shopping bill, effectively covering the cost of their gas in return for the delivery of packages, he added.
Wow. I really didn't think Walmart could stoop any lower, but I see I underestimated them.
This is a company that has already "crowd sourced" their low wages by having the rest of us subsidize their food stamps. They also "crowd sourced" employee health insurance by holding workshops telling employees how to apply for Medicaid.
This, from a company that's owned by the <http://www.alternet.org/newsandviews/article/1034216/american_dynasty%3A_wal-mart%27s_walton_family_has_the_wealth_of_48.8_million_families_combined>wealthiest family in America.
Why is this news?
Back in high school chemistry (!), we discussed how light passing through various mediums (OK, pedants: media — but no jokes about the press or TV, please) has different speeds. (This was in relation to Cherenkov radiation). Therefore, if vacuums are not truly vacuums nor consistently adulterated, it follows that the speed of light will similarly vary.
Hmmm...warmer in ancient Egypt?
Seems to me I remember hearing something about Atlantis...
Mine's the wetsuit
Well, of course...
being a Yank, I haven't seen said show, and cannot comment. I do remember, however, some years ago, a dig that showed there was a wooden Stonehenge twin (Woodhenge?) a short distance away.
But what do I know? I wasn't there...
- Pic Suffering SPITZER! Boffins discover Milky Way's MISSING ARMS
- Antique Code Show Sega’s Out Run: Even better than the wheel thing
- Tube be or not tube be: Apple’s CYLINDRICAL Mac Pro is out tomorrow
- Oi, bank manager. Only you've got my email address - where're these TROJANS coming from?
- Go on, buy Bitcoin. But DON'T say we didn't WARN YOU