Re: PCIe won't work well outside the box...
Except it would be a future that belonged to a single vendor, who owned the RRAM patents. You're describing HP's lock-in fetishist utopia. No thanks.
6748 posts • joined 31 May 2010
Except it would be a future that belonged to a single vendor, who owned the RRAM patents. You're describing HP's lock-in fetishist utopia. No thanks.
Those are the barriers. Hypertransport is faster than PCI-E as well. It hasn't won because of...
A) The Al/C battery work doesn't port to silicon chips. It is unlikely we will ever see flash chips without write limits.
B) You'll sell just as many new units even if your units last forever because our demand for data is insatiable. What use is a SATA 32GB SSD today, excepting in some very niche applications? Hell, what use is a 120GB? Would you buy a 240GB for your notebook?
Flash write lives aren't being artificially suppressed. It's just physics.
Aye, and other than the security boogyman, I'm unsure what the benefit is for the average SQL user of upgrading. 14x faster? But what if SQL 2005 is already rediculous overkill? Sometimes it's used not because it's the most sensible DB for the use case, but because the developer didn't know how to code for anything else.
If you can get Bell you should be able to get TekSavvy.
Windows, Windows Server, Exchange, SQL Dynamics and virtually every other product that you might consider installing on premises is considered "in decline" and "legacy" by Microsoft. Microsoft has radically altered it's sales structures such that the only way you make your quotas is to sell Microsoft's public cloud services. Based on this, Microsoft it not merely seeing a slowdown (or halt) in growth for these segments in the market, it is actively trying to reduce those product lines to zero.
You will put all your data in Microsoft's cloud, you will submit to American legal jurisdiction and you will pay subscription fees for everything, especially when you hit a downturn and can't actually afford it. There will be no more of this "owning your own infrastructure" or "stretching your purchases a few years". You will pay Microsoft what they feel is their due per endpoint and per user (for frontend and backend services) and you'll do it with a smile in your wallet, goddamn it.
Let me be clear here: if the customer has a support agreement with VMware than any VMware partner can escalate on behalf of a customer, OEM or not. In fact, I'm not even a "VMware partner", and I escalate support tickets for my clients all the time.
The support is paid for by the customer. Who is on the phone does not matter. You may have to have the customer added to the call for a minute or two to acknowledge that they are authorising you to speak on their behalf, but three-way calling is simple.
If I am allowed to do this, as a small time operator with no VMware certifications, there is no rational reason why Nutanix - which is filled with VCDXes - cannot as well.
Restrictions (as per the release notes) change with each release. That's why it's in tehre. As for what can and can't be mixed, there is a difference between what is officially supported and what is possible. I know Nutanix is looking to increase the officially suported node admixtures, but that many of these are not fully tested enough.
Also: ask Nutanix. They will actually try to provide you the information and won't hide it. And if you ask Steve and he finds there is more up to date info than is in the Bible, he'll add it.
VMware doesn't post information about the issues with Intel 10GbE cards and various different versions of ESXI 5.0/5.5. Nor does Intel. When you ask them, they point fingers at one another, and the KBs on the topic are useless. I could find at least 50 other examples of such issues in my own lab. Yet you don't seem to mind that.
There were a whole bunch of issues with restrictions on implementation of vSphere 6's appliance, yet that's not openly stated. We had to have the community go face first into the GA and find those issues. Half of the ones I know about aren't yet in KBs and none are in the primary documentation.
VMware doesn't advertise, for example, that Flash Read Cache doesn't dynamically resize flash amounts after you move a VM, or that if you try to move a VM onto a system with all the flash committed it won't move. (And that this will affect HA!) And don't get me started on DRS.
You don't see a bunch of advertisement on the VSAN site about VSAN's lack of basic technologies like compression and deduplication. So is all that okay, while Nutanix leaving out some untested scenarios from official documentation until they are sure of the gotchas makes them bad?
What are you even talking about? Do you even know the feild at all? Please look up The Nutanix Bible. Amongst many, many other things. Nutanix not only makes available every stitch of information about their products, they are praised by their competitors for having some of the most complete documentation in the industry!
VMware doesn't do a whole lot of "selling a solution" anymore. They have places a lot of restrictions on what their sales folks can talk about, and even which VMware partner products they are allowed to discuss let alone recommend. VMware is 100% about the lockin these days. It has nothing to do with what's best for the consumer.
Nutanix, at least, is willing to sit down with the customer and have an honest conversation about customer needs. That this is having more and more customers decide they don't need VMware is perfectly fine. Not because I have a beef with VMware, or love Nutanix, but because customer needs are what matter. Not vendor needs.
The vendors can go to hell. All of them. Even though they are the ones paying my salary, I'll say loud and say it proud: the customer comes first, the customer comes last, and the customer is everything in between.
Aha, so when a company outsources the architeching to Nutanix they are stupid. When a company outsources the architecting of their datacenter to you, they are smart. And when I hit you with a bus? What then? Hard to hit all of Nutanix with a bus. There's a lot of 'em.
Oh, and by the way? The hypervisor is a commodity. Not matter how much the cult leaders say it isn't.
So which team do you work for at VMware?
Maxta is currently focusing on pushing it's reference architecture appliances through it's channel partners and downplaying the ability to install it's software on any hardware. This is because unless you are a service provider (who is used to the integration/testing work necessary to DIY) it's relatively easy to unbalance your nodes and end up with a cluster that doesn't perform adequately. Providing support to the uninitiated is costly, and - to be perfectly blunt - the overwhelming majority of users simply don't need anything but an appliance.
Disclaimer: Maxta marketing contractor.
Well, there were a lot of people who swore "virtualisation would never take off" and "cloud computing is just a fad".
“It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”
Not sure I can agree. First, you're lumping a lot of stuff together that doesn't belong together. vBlock/Flexpod is converged, not hyperconverged. It's a bunch of legacy crap packaged under one SKU. Pricy, pricy...and still a pain to manage.
Proximal/Pernix is server side caching. Nothing at all to do with hyperconvergence. As for the rest, well...I don't see how competition is bad.
Nutanix/SimpliVity/Scale/Maxta/what-have-you simply take away the need to worry about keeping the lights on. The infrastructure comes pre-canned and you just don't faff about.
Does it matter if one cluster is SimpliVity and the other Nutnaix? No! The interfaces are so simple - and integrated into the vendor management tools - that you don't ultimately have to care. You play one vendor against another, drive down costs, and so long as each cluster is the same vendor, you're good.
And you know what? Each hyperconverged vendor has their own specialty, so you might want different vendors, as each cluster would be better at some kinds of workloads than others. Just like with traditional infrastructure, but less faffing about wasting precious administrator time resizing LUNs.
Hyperconvergence was 5% early last year. It's predicted to be 10% early next year. ANd 30% the year after that. Both Gartner and EMC predict hyperconverged infrastructure will make up 50% of the non-object storage in a datacenter before the decade's out. Hyperconvergence isn't a fad, and it isn't going away. It's the new normal.
So that whole thing where you got paid to make sure your storage was set up right, that it worked with your servers, that you resized LUNs and so forth? Gone. Get a new job. Storage administrators are done, except for the very few who do object storage.
And that's a good thing! Storage administrators are smart folks, and it's better to retrain them for something else and get their brains working on advancing business needs instead of keeping the lights on. That's called progress.
So don't fear hyperconverged setups. Don't even fear multiple hyperconverged vendors in one datacenter. The whole point is "easy button" simplicity...and for the most part, they deliver.
Hardware is dirt cheap. Software is not. It's easy to move between hardware platforms. Not so easy to move between software platforms. Hardware vendors have so much competition that there is no effective lock in except for mainframes.
Software, well...how much power do you trust your software vendor with? So much that you're willing to bet your whole business on them without retaining any realistic bargaining position?
If you trust them that much, go hard. I personally don't trust vendors. I thusly require that my vendkrs be relatively easily replaced, should they try shenanigans.
Uh...what? Are you on mind-altering substances? Half the article is about how Nutanix isn't needed either.
The article isn't "don't lock in with VMware" at all. I do say "don't lock in with a company you don't trust not to screw you." I also point out that where decent competition exists, lock-in isn't impotant...you will have other vendors you can call upon.
VMware is trying to build a complete stack that controls all aspects of your datacentre. Storage, compute, networking, automation, hybrid linkage, data protection and more.
Don't buy that massive vertical integration unless you trust VMware completely. There are no full stack alternatives. What's more, once locked in to VMware's software solution for more than just basic hypervisor stuff, it's really, really hard to move away.
It's easy to move away from Nutanix. They're disposible and easily replaced. So you don't have to worry about "lock-in" from them.
If you cannot understand the difference between that and "shilling for Nutanix" you have issues.
And? I am sure 90% of VMware's customers are worth way less than their top 5%. As it is for most companies.
What is it with the VMware religious types that they assume that because I think VMware needs to take the high road I am automatically 100% pro Nutanix for everything? Lotta black-and-whiters out and about.
The ability to afford the software in question? VMware's great, if you aren't spending your own money. They get a whole lot less appealing when it's your budget that has to cough up the goods. And they don't really negotiate unless you're really, really large.
What's more, they seem hellbent on taking over every single aspect of the datacenter and then pushing all partners and competitors out. So, do we really want a company that likes pricing things only for the Fortune 2000 in charge of every single aspect of our datacenter?
Competition is good. Monopoly is not. VMware makes great stuff, no question...but not everyone needs it all. Who cares if your datacenter can "fly to the moon" when all you need is "commute to work"? But when the options are packaged such that they would make US cable companies blush, well...
...you start dreaming of competitors...or at least "a-la carte".
Untrue. Nutanix is making very real wins into VMware's customer base. They are not pleased with Nutanix, which is why VMware are constantly putting time and effort into thwarting them. You don't waste millions on trying to sabotage a company that doesn't matter. You don't have an entire section of your partner portal devoted to defeating a company that doesn't matter. You don't kick a company out of your conferences that doesn't matter.
What Nutanix does can be done many companies, but it takes many companies to do all that Nutanix does. More to the point, Nutanix's customers are overall more satisfied with Nutanix than they are with VMware. (With a few notable exceptions.)
So I agree wholeheartedly that Nutanix aren't the be-all end-all, but they absolutely have VMware's attention, and they absolutely are drawing a very public - and expensive - fear response.
You have not actually provided evidence. Which features, exactly, are missing? Why does this make Pure unusable in the enterprise? On what basis do you assert that this applies to all customers?
Again: proof or no true Scotsman.
"f you look at what Pure is actually selling, it's not really ready for the enterprise, and anyone worth their salt knows it--including their employees."
Proof or No True Scotsman.
Can't speak to the UK. You guys get shafted on almost all tech. 1$ = 1£ is nonsense, but seems to be prevalent.
And while Scale may not have made huge sense when they first came out, I think revisiting - especially if you aren't in cuckoo 1$ = 1£ land - is worth consideration. But so are organizations like XByte and Servermonkey, especially if you are state-side. It's never simple; there are so many good combinations.
Scale's usefullness is that they are "easy button" simple for SMBs. And SMBs don't always have top teir sysadmins to help them do things. If you already have a top teir sysadmin, and his time is worth nothing, then rolling your own makes sense.
Up past the midmarket, does Scale make sense? I don't know. They don't have too many really high end configurations. They have some decent mid-range stuff now, but no high end stuff.
I live and breathe DIY. Despite this, I am really starting to come around to the whole idea of appliances. Companies don't make money resizing LUNs. So I am really falling in love with organisations that provide infrastructure appliances, so that I can stop fretting about keeping the lights on and start using the technology to hand.
But that's probably just because I'm old and cranky and no longer have the enthusiasm for this sort of thing. When you've fixed a thousand printers and debugged a debunked the iSCSI microbursting myth a few hundred times it all seems so...boring...to roll your own. And I question constantly if my time isn't better spend doing practically anything else.
I am not remotely sure that I understand. Scale is very easily better bang-for-buck than Dell, HP and EMC. Especially when you factor in the cost of the sysadmin time to set up and baby those devices. But then you switch from talking about TCO and start saying Scale is voodoo. So which was it that drove you away?
It sounds to me a bit like you took a cursory look, but it sounds to me like you either took a cursory look whilst hoping for a reson to discredit, or you were hoping for cheaper hardware than Dell/HP/EMC and were trying to compare hardware to hardware without factoring in the cost of any licensing on the Dell/HP/EMC side.
A 3 node HC1000 should be between 20k and 30k. That's between $6.7k and $10k per node for storage, compute, hypervisor, management tools and integration services. That's not the best price I've seen for 32GB/node, but going up a level to the dual CPU nodes that come with more RAM and can be upgraded doesn't bump the cost/node by much. In both cases they end up far cheaper than storage + compute + hypervisor + management tools + integration services from pretty much any place I've seen that demanded more than Synology for the back end storage.
Entry level of scale is indeed a single socket Quad Core Xeon with 32GB of RAM that can't be upgraded...because Intel won't allow you to use more than 32GB of RAM with a single socket Xeon. Period.
But had you looked at one model up from the HC1000, you'd have found Scale Computing offered the dual socket models in a plethora of configurations that could be upgraded at will. You are complaining that the lowest possible tier model can't be upgraded because Intel designed their lineup that way. Sorry mate, there's nothing to be done about that. If you want the flexibility you have to pay the minimum cost for a two-socket server, even if it has one CPU. That ain't Scale's fault, and it would be the same if you rolled your own.
"We are working mainly on the EU market so we haven't seen Scale Computing much yet"
Sorry to have to be the one to inform you, but you will be seeing a lot more of Scale in the EU market very soon. Hans and I will be seeing to that. Also expect Maxta, Yottabyte, Gridstore and many, many others.
Also: for the record, I have three HC1000s, so I do get to test what moving things around the cluster is like. I will be interested to give NodeWeaver a proper look see, just like I have for nearly every other hyperconvergence solution out there.
If you work with one hyperconvergence company you are biased towards that company. If you work with all the companies (or nearly all) you're developing expertise. I prefer the latter to the former, and I haven't' been disappointed. Each company has their charms, and each solution is special in it's own way, with it's own use cases.
So I'll find time later this month, and we'll see about getting Nodeweaver spun up!
@PVecchi My lab: http://www.trevorpott.com/thelab/ The problem is not finding nodes. The problem is finding time...
"I'm not sure you ever heard a ScaleComputing pitch"
Uh, Hans, my company - eGeek Consulting Ltd - runs it's production infrastructure on Scale Computing's appliances. Jason sent over 3x HC1000 nodes and they've proven quite reliable and usable thus far. At some point The Other Scott Lowe and I are going to set up a multi-site replication setup for testing, and I think Justin Warren is on the list too.
Actually, you know I know about Scale because we had a whole discussion on Twitter about Scale. Anyways, Jason's really reaching out to the community at large and working with many of us to make sure we know what they have to provide. For the most part it's good stuff. (I should have a review up some time next week, as a matter of fact.)
Anywho, thar she be...
Yes, PVecchi NodeWeaver is one of the projects I was talking about. There are others. I actually just learned of a new one a few hours ago. Don't ask me how I ended up being "hyperconverged guy", but here I am. :/
NodeWeaver is interesting, and I can't wait to see the code when it's ready for a more open beta. Keep an eye out for some of my articles this month, I've got entire series on hyperconvergence due.
One thing worth noting is that other hyeprconverged players are already working on Docker support. Maxta, for example, supports VMware, KVM, KVM/Openstack (Via Mirantis) and Docker. And that's just one of the many, many players in the hyperconverged market.
Nutanix isn't the only one talking about open source either, and there are at least two "open hyperconverged" projected that have started in stealth. Hyperconvergence is going to be a commodity just like the hypervisor. The money is in the management tools.
Make it easy to use and cheap to deploy with licensing that's simple and comprehensible...or get out of the game!
Uh, hell yes conservatives be way the fuck more crazy than me. Also: the more you, personally, dislike and distrust a news source, the more I know it must be accurate!
Never said cloud services are a panacea. Not even close. Very specifically, I said DRaaS is not a viable tool for use. It's come of age, and there are multiple viable providers. Like all tools, DRaaS won't be right for all use cases or for all shops, but then again absolutely nothing is.
Hey, everyone, I made a religious Tea Party type all angry! What a perfect, glorious start to a Monday. I'm so proud!
Seriously though, Mr. Paul, you can't shame me into thinking I should be tolerant towards bigots. That whole "you're not tolerant unless you tolerate the intolerant" thing is bollocks, and I don't buy it.
There are lots of things that make me happy. The problem you and I have is that I am made happy by things like "organizations and governments that comply with the UDHR" and "your right to swing ends at the point of my nose". I'm made angry by religions and politics that seek to control people.
And no, corporations aren't people.
So, in general, a whole lot of the first world outside of the US, the UK and OZ makes me very happy! Especially Nordic countries. Oh, every country has their flaws, but there are still some pretty great thigns in this world...even great politics!
But America? I can't see why I would like it, Mr Paul. It's filled with people like you. And there's not a damned thing to like about you.
As for "bigoted namecalling", I don't particularly see why I should refrain. The whacko loony tunes side of the right wing pulpit certainly doesn't hold back. Why honour them by treating them or their viewpoints as somehow worthy of anything other than utter contempt and extreme prejudice? They don't espouse evidence-based philosophies, ideals, politics or really anything. So why should I spend even a bent iota of time attempting to play nice, use logic or bother with evidence when debating them?
Attempting to have a rational, evidence-based, logical conversation with someone who honestly believes "because God" is an acceptable answer to something is completely pointless. Similarly, attempting to have such a conversation wtih someone who still believes - against all evidence - that supply side economics works, is just silly.
The whacko right wing aren't espousing rational philosophies or using rational argumentation. They are using faith and rhetoric! You can't argue against faith and rhetoric with logic and expect anything other than a circular wankfest. So fuck it, skip it, and go straight to simply calling them out for being crazy and then ostracizing them.
So, you know what? I think I'll keep on keeping on. Making you unhappy and pissing in the cheerios of the types of folks who think they have a "right" to control women's vaginas, people's sexual orientations and how many people of what colour live where. I'll piss off that lot with a shit-eating grin on my face and feel great about myself.
I've read your own posts, sir. You're pretty damned vitriolic yourself. Of course, you seem to think that's fine, so long as it's "the evil liberals" you're attacking. Well boo fucking hoo. Your entire life philosophy is wrong, and I'm not afraid to call you on it over and over and over and over. Let's dance a dance and weave our tapestry of political interferometry across the Internets, shall we?
It seems like the thing to do.
"And if the caller is I'D as international and vanishes the next day?"
Then they succeed in annoying you. That said, you know they're a scam because they aren't obeying the DNC.
Just because a given law isn't perfect and doesn't solve every possible use case doesn't mean it isn't a step in the right direction. What would you prefer, a DNC law that is imperfect and in which some scammers make it through or no DNC law at all in which you are irritated dozens of times a night by telemarketers?
People who let perfect be the enemy of good are, to my thinking, batshit crazy.
No, the worst offenders are the ones above the law. Then there are some criminals who would track people regardless, but they would be investigated by the law and brought to justice. That's what laws are for.
Let me put this another way. In Canada there is a phone register where you put your phone number ever 3 or so years and you are on the list for "do not telemarket to me you poxy whoresons". Only newspapers registered charities (usually "can we pick up used household items") and political campaigns are exempt from this law.
Immediately after implementation the number of irritating phone calls dropped to about 10%. Of those, the "can we pick up used household items" folks are useful because they send a truck round twice a year to pick up stuff you've no use for. Newspapers could fuck off any time - as could politicians - but a call a week from those groups is way better than the 10-20 a night of telemarketers we were getting before.
Now, there are scammers - mostly based out of the US and India - but you know that they are scammers because they are not respecting the do not call list. You can just hang up on them.
Most individuals and companies obey the law. They don't want to pay fines or end up in jail. Some organizations (newspapers in this case, technology companies in the case of online advertising) try to have the laws drafted so as not to affect them.
Only governments and politicians think themselves truly above the law. Everyone else are criminals, and you can ignore them because they are criminals.
In the case of DNT and online advertising there are whitelists that are assembled and can be fed into things like AdBlock. Compliance with the initative gets you on the white list. Non compliance gets you blocked. One day we may be able to take a blacklist approach, and that would be nice...but it would require laws and proven enforcement before we go there.
But therein lies the problem: the corrupt governments - namely the US - that won't look after individual liberties. Most especially because they are the worst offenders for infringing on civil liberties.
So because the almighty US of A refuses to not be a worthless sack of fetid shit, ordinary citizens need to take their own liberties into their own hands. In this case, through methods like Adblock.
Were laws in place legitimate companies would follow them. Period. They might rail and moan and lobby and campaign, but when all is said and done they'd obey. The risks of not doing so are just too high.
Unfortunately we can't get laws put in place. The reason is a combination of fatalistic apathy (which the American populace excels at) and a blame-the-victim mentality that is fucking abhorrent.
We have made serious dents in these sorts of problems in other spheres. We can make serious dents in these problems online as well. Can we completely eliminate the issues? No. But we can make it obvious who are criminals and who are not and implement technologies to isolate those criminals and mitigate the damage they do.
And for the record, individuals seeking privacy are not the criminals here. Those seeking to infringe the privacy of others are. And for that matter, those who meekly accede to those who want to invade the privacy of us all should be tried as accomplices!
I wasn't too harsh on Doug at all. If anything, I was far, far too lenient.
"If you make a law, that's great, but that's an option only available to those of you in the EU. In the US the odds of such a law are zero."
Then get rid of your useless, corrupt, inept and socially backwards rulers. Stop wasting your time preventing gay people from marrying and start finding a way to provide health care to your people universally and at the same cost per citizen as the rest of the civilized world. Stop locking up your people for stupid petty shit and start educating them instead, so that they aren't trapped in a life of poverty that requires crime for subsistence.
In short, stop treating your populace as peasantry to be kept ignorant and oppressed and maybe - just maybe - your country wouldn't suck out loud. Of course, that would me throwing all the idiots who believe in supply side economics or want a theocracy into the ocean, but to be perfectly honest you lot should be doing that as a matter of course.
If you make it the default, web sites will just ignore it saying "the user didn't intend to set it like that". If the default is off, then anyone who has DNT set most definitely DID intend to set that, and that argument that they "didn't mean to" falls flat.
What is the point of a setting like that if it defaults to not allowing tracking? No one is going to enable that.
Websites shouldn't be tracking you by default. It should be opt in, not opt out. Those that choose otherwise should be dragged up to Mt Erebus and chucked the fuck in.
Uh, it's the USA that will have put Oliver on the "known associate" list, mate.
When have I ever started with the solution "put it in the cloud"? Hmm? Do you even read the articles anymore? Or you just see "cloud" then whip your your Mighty Ragekeyboard of Justice? Dear $deity man, I have a pretty solid track record as being one of the most anti-cloud writers The Register has! I have written any number of articles warning about the many and varied dangers, and not to take the supposed cost savings at face value.
Despite that, the cloud is worth consideration. It is - for backups - probably even cheaper (under the right circumstances). It's one tool amongst many, but it is an increasingly valid and important one. Even to "cloud haters" like me.
What shocks me is that you are so averse to cloud computing that you would advise customers to be prepared to simply lose data rather than use the cloud. And, of course, you're assuming that the customer has sorted and organized all their data or has the time to do so. In many cases - in my experience, in most cases - it is actually cheaper to just buy the extra damned storage space than it is to throw umpteen man-hours at an organization and rationalization project.
While I agree that not everything in every company has to be backed up, or made disaster proof, not every company has the means to make that determination, either. And - to be perfectly blunt about this - not only are you better safe than sorry, but the cost of cloud storage just isn't high enough to piss and moan about any more. The cost of data loss, however can be the whole company.
So, while you and I could sit here listing exceptions to every rule, the existence of an exception does not invalidate the rule. The rule is: everyone needs backups and everyone should be sending some or all of those backups to a disaster recovery site. The addendum to that rule is that cloud backups are generally cheaper and certainly way the heck easier for most companies, like it or not.
Now i personally don't like it - I have massive data sovereignty concerns with cloud computing - but my personal preference doesn't change reality. And I submit to you sir that your preferences don't change reality either.
I don't know, I wouldn't mind it if my notebook skittered over a few inches to the inductive charging pad when the cat knocks it askew...
@Hargrove Like the previous poster, I suspect you are a religious apologist rather than anything approaching an impartial observer. The biggest reason for my suspicion here is that I did indeed acknowledge that this sort of authoritarian mindset can exist outside of the welcoming bosom of religion, yet you seem to feel that I not only did not say this, but that the existence of this mindset outside of religion somehow removes religion from consideration in this matter.
Yes, authoritarian pricks exist outside of religion. But religion is, by a country mile, the biggest refuge of these types of people. The existence of exceptions does not invalidate the rule.
The problem isn't religion per se. If you want to believe idiocy, go right ahead, that's up to you. The problem is that we, as a society, give religions special dispensation. Everything from tax breaks to special legal (and in crazy countries, even constitutional) protections. This makes religions the perfect place for authoritarians to hide and attempt to build their power.
The result? While individual religious followers may not all be authoritarian douchecnaoes, religions almost universally are. The social construct of religions are dangerous. The existence of them as a class of thing separate from a corporation is a huge problem.
Religions are businesses. Businesses built on intolerance, guilt, shame, shunning and - above all else - fear. Like all businesses power and money are the end goals and they will cajole, manipulate and coerce anyone and anything to achieve their ends.
Some handful of religious believers that might sometimes be good people doesn't change the above. Individual belief rarely amounts to anything on a society scale. But the institution of religions can - and does - have massively negative consequences, especially as the special treatment we give these organizations makes them the perfect lure for the authoritarian powermongers in our society.
Lastly, it is a terribly human fallacy to presume that we are "normal". That what we perceive ourselves to be is somehow indicative of "the average" or "everyone else", if not for the world as a whole, then certainly for the social groups with whom/which we choose to self identify.
An Atheist may be passionate in his lack of belief, but it's a really, really, really, really, really rare occurrence that an atheist proposes a law allowing atheist business owners to refuse to serve people of faith, or gays, or any other group. Religious groups churn that sort of bigotry out on a daily basis, and that's just in the US of A!
I have also never encountered atheists going door to door to tell you to "lose Jesus" or somesuch. Athiests may not believe ardently, but they don't tend towards using that lack of belief as a rationale for oppression or bigotry.
Note: refusal to be tolerant towards intolerant bigots is not bigotry.
If you want to start towards a society where religion is something other than a massive net negative, let's start by ripping up every single "special treatment" reserved for religion out there. Religions should register as corporations. Not-for-profit if that is what they indeed are (as opposed to Scientology, which is emphatically for profit.) Charities if they do charitable works.
But no special protection. If you believe, or don't believe, or anything in between you are treated the same. No tax breaks. No superpowers. No get out of jail or get out of corruption or get out of oversight free cards.
Make religions no more enticing a place than your local anti-cancer charity and the distribution of authoritarian douchecanoes will massively change. They won't be able to hind behind the special protections of religion anymore, so they'll have to move on elsewhere.
Maybe then individual belief will mean something. As it stands, what you believe means nothing. What matters is what people do in the name of religion, with billions of dollars to throw around, and special protections no other class of organization enjoys.
It may not be the exclusive preserve of religious nutters to want to peek into every aspect of the lives of others but they are by far the worst offenders. Worst of all, they can never offer an logical rationale for their actions.
Anyone who waves around a book written by dead men as an excuse to remove civil liberties from others deserves to be chucked into a volcano. "Because god" is not a valid reason for anything.
The absolutism of faith offers up a whole other issue too: the inability to compromise. Faith is by it's very definition beyond logic, reason or boundaries. This means that when religion on morality-based-on-religion is the rationale for the removal of other peoples' rights there is no middle ground possible.
The religious types have faith that they are correct. Any attempt at balancing what may on the surface be a reasonable invasion of privacy (or breaking of any other rights/liberties/freedoms) will be viewed as hostile.
Limits, oversight, checks and balances are all viewed as attempts by unbelievers to question faith. Thus, what should be a reasonable, rational discussion about why we might want to look at intruding on the lives of others and how we might minimize that intrusion becomes an issue of "religious freedom".
In the eyes of the religious fuzzy wuzzy there exists a right for the religious man to order about others, know everything about others and control others. Any attempt to give those people control over their own lives or to enforce equality is viewed by the religious man as "oppression" because you are removing from them the "right" to tell others what to do.
But there is not right to order others, invade their privacy or control them. Any religious belief which says such a "right" exists is flat out wrong.
Let us, for example, look at gathering demographics. Government -run long form statistical surveys backed by force of law can - at first glance - seem intrusive. Yet they have perfectly valid and rational reasons to exist. With the correct controls, oversight and checks and balances in place that information can help researchers in various fields such as epidemiology, sociology, city planning, social services and many others.
There is not, however, any rational reason for non-researchers (under heavy NDA, etc) to have access to that information. There is certainly no good reason for individuals to be able to mine the information to determine, for example, who responded to the survey as LGBT.
Now, mix that up with the sort of things going on in Indiana: again, religious whacko driven. Here we have religious nutters who somehow think they have a right</i. to discriminate against people based on identifiable characteristics. Sexual orientation in this case, but I'm willing to bet the same people wish entirely they could discriminate on age, gender, race, country of origin, etc.
Every business owner should have the right to refuse to serve individuals who are abusive, or who have mistreated them (failure to pay, etc) in the past. Or to refuse a client because your capacity is full and you cannot meet the needs of additional clients. That falls under the positive right to take preventative measures against harm to yourself or your business for clear reasons that would be accepted by any reasonable jury.
But refusing service to others based on identifiable characteristics (AKA discrimination) when there are no capacity issues and no history of misconduct is simply unacceptable. Despite this, it's a key component of religious belief and practice: <i>shame, guilt and shunning.
Religion is all about control and power. It is about keeping those who have power in power and about providing a social framework that ensures predictable power structures across generations, usually ones where the minority benefit at the expense of the majority.
In today's world, violence isn't allowed in first world nations as a means of obtaining and retaining control, thus religions are falling back on shame, guilt and shunning. As a consequence, they are obsessed with getting their hands on personally identifiable information and every last detail of every person's actions, thoughts, hopes dreams and desires.
That knowledge is power. It's power over the individual but it is also the means by which the religious power structures can be maintained and transmitted down the generations. And for that reason alone we should be fighting against privacy invasion, but it is also why we need to be exceptionally wary of the use of the cloak of faith and "religious rights" as a pretext for the breach of civil liberties.
They'll never stop trying and we can never let them win.
No, it's simple: never invade the privacy of others. Whether you are an individual, a government or a corporation. Neither bizarre religious beliefs or fear of "terrorists" nor desire for profit gives you the right to intrude on the lives of others.
More to the point, it's time we stopped judging other for what they do in private. The problem isn't those who choose to enjoy themselves, it's the religious fuckpopsicles who believe making other people miserable is something they need too, should, or have a right to do.
String the revenge porn assholes up by their genitalia and any of the judgmental religious freaks who try to shame victims right along side them!
"but if you allow yourself to recorded doing such things...."
Then you're perfectly normal. Your morality and judgement are irrelevant. People have a right to privacy, no matter what they do in the bedroom. You and your pious bleating can go to whatever version of hell you believe in.
"Are Uber providing a transportation service, or are they simply providing a marketplace and payment services. It seems clear to me that they are in the business of bringing buyers and sellers together (in the UK at least) much more than they are hiring drivers to take people places."
And there's nothing wrong with being a market place for licensed transport services at all. The problem is when Uber doesn't enforce compliance with local laws for all those transport drivers signed up to it's service. Then it's no longer "helping people get taxis" it's "letting people roll the dice to see if they'll get Bob's Candy Van".
There's nothing wrong with ordering a taxi via an app. There's everythgin wrong with offering taxi services where there is no audit system in place to ensure that:
1) Taxis and their drivers have all relevant licensing and insurance
2) Taxi drivers are known, background checked and less likely than the average citizen to be crazy murderapists
3) Taxi drivers are somewhat capable of driving (we hope)
4) Taxi drivers are not allowed to discriminate on who they pick up
5) Taxi companies cover the whole of the city, not just the lucrative bits
There are some others, but you get the idea. There is a pretty big difference between a licensed and regulated taxi company and "Bob's free candy van and iPhone App emporium".
There's a reason I don't fix kit out in the sticks anymore. This province is from the ****ing stone ages.
Rack Monkey != Network Admin