JuniperMonkeys's recent activity

  1. Comment on Apple Special Event - March 25, 2019 in ~tech

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    Vertical integration is not a de facto antitrust issue in the US. It certainly can be, however -- as a consequence, when one says the word "antitrust", that has a meaning and one then needs to...

    Vertical integration is not a de facto antitrust issue in the US. It certainly can be, however -- as a consequence, when one says the word "antitrust", that has a meaning and one then needs to demonstrate consumer harm. Antitrust laws are focused on abuses of corporate power to reduce competition. How does its existence harm Chase/Wells Fargo/whoever and their customers? Are Apple subtracting from the choices available to consumers, or adding another? How does Apple Card compel consumers to submit to supra-competitive pricing?

    I realize that viewed from some jurisdictions this can seem wild, but fundamentally we're talking about a US company subject to US law offering a service to US consumers. Corporate financial arms have been a thing here for over a hundred years. Although I find the Apple Card very distasteful, when measured against something like carmaker-owned car financing companies it seems almost benign.

    Again, I agree with you that it feels icky. With that said, I think it's important to be careful with terminology when describing corporate animals precisely because the regulatory environment is so permissive. Change isn't driven by framing accusations in a way that the law understands and doesn't support, but by demonstrating that the law as it sits is not sufficiently defining the terms of those animals' environment.

    To draw a comparison to a sort-of-related issue, to me it's the difference between saying "the rich don't pay their fair share of taxes", and saying that "taxes on the rich are not high enough". They can be used interchangeably, but one carries an implicit legal charge that's generally not supportable (modulo Wesley Snipeses), whereas the other frames it as an issue to which the law itself is subordinate and made malleable.

    1 vote
  2. Comment on Apple Special Event - March 25, 2019 in ~tech

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    Just out of curiosity, where do you see an antitrust issue? You're able to use competing financial instruments to pay for things on and with Apple devices, you're able to use the Apple Card to...

    an Apple credit card (?!? how do antitrust laws even work?)

    Just out of curiosity, where do you see an antitrust issue? You're able to use competing financial instruments to pay for things on and with Apple devices, you're able to use the Apple Card to interact financially with competitors... the idea feels intrinsically gross to me, but I'm not getting an antitrust issue.

    There could be some argument that having the balance management stuff built into the Wallet app was an Essential Facilities Doctrine matter, but Apple could probably say that competitors are free to build that information into their own app (as they do)...

  3. Comment on Apple Special Event - March 25, 2019 in ~tech

    JuniperMonkeys Link
    I'd be really curious to hear about the germination of the Apple Card. A lot of people within Apple are aware of the optics of Apple launching a credit card in partnership with fucking Goldman....

    I'd be really curious to hear about the germination of the Apple Card. A lot of people within Apple are aware of the optics of Apple launching a credit card in partnership with fucking Goldman. They're not idiots -- they knew people would have thoughts like the ones that are already in this thread.

    So I guess I wonder if they really planned on having the privacy angle be the answer for all consumer objections. It really seems like it, but they didn't give the impression that they'd privacy that hard in the messaging. Certainly not as hard as they'd need to override all the "apple make a credit card? they take money huhu lol" stuff. I just don't know what else it's bringing to the table. The notion of a privacy-centric "financial product" sounds as appealing to me as an Apple credit card sounds distasteful, so I'm sort of on the fence.

    The messaging is just mystifying, though. They continue to succeed in areas where they've always succeeded, but a credit card feels like the move you make when you're short on moves -- the glint in the eye of a public company that has begun to devour itself to appease shareholders.

    Kind of a bummer from an ethos perspective, too. In the same way that "Don't be evil" died years ago, a credit card really seems like the coffin slamming shut on "bicycle for the mind". You can still make awesome tools for fun weirdos... but now you're the company that has a Goldman card.

    8 votes
  4. Comment on Apple Special Event - March 25, 2019 in ~tech

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    Leading with names instead of content set a very weird tone. I guess I'm sort of at a remove, but do people care about that? The pitch-centric format almost seemed like it was intended to speak to...

    Leading with names instead of content set a very weird tone. I guess I'm sort of at a remove, but do people care about that? The pitch-centric format almost seemed like it was intended to speak to other Hollywood people, rather than consumers -- like, "here's some of your peers giving our thing their imprimatur".

    With that said, I'm pleased they got through an entire event discussing media without bringing Eddy Cue on stage.

    5 votes
  5. Comment on Apple introduces second generation AirPods, with Hey Siri, H1 audio chip, & wireless charging in ~tech

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    Just out of curiosity, what's degradation on yours been like? I bought mine on day one of their availability, so that's two years three months, and seem to be getting about three hours of usage...

    Just out of curiosity, what's degradation on yours been like? I bought mine on day one of their availability, so that's two years three months, and seem to be getting about three hours of usage before the Bing-Bong of Imminent Demise.

    I was wondering since my usage sort of shields me from noticing. I probably average four hours of use a day, but it's broken up into little bits in between which they're charging in the case.

    1 vote
  6. Comment on Openly editable posts. Crazy idea? in ~tildes

    JuniperMonkeys Link
    I agree with everyone else's points about why this isn't necessarily beneficial to discussions. With that said, it would be interesting to at least mess with as a means to avoid "well, actually"...

    I agree with everyone else's points about why this isn't necessarily beneficial to discussions.

    With that said, it would be interesting to at least mess with as a means to avoid "well, actually" responses to long and interesting OPs. If someone writes 750 interesting words about the Dardanelles, a response that's just like "Actually, you wrote HMS Impregnable when the ship in question was actually the HMS Implacable" (even if it's phrased politey) is annoying at best and has decent odds of turning into riposte, counter-riposte, and notation that someone, somewhere, has created a vacuum. Being able to suggest an edit to an OP in a way that's less interactiony-potentially-accusatory than a PM and less discussion-frustratey-space-wastey than an open reply might be nice.

    8 votes
  7. Comment on I regret not seeing Solo in theaters in ~movies

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    I admit, I'm one of those people. My feeling is that the prequels are atrocious movies, and make it clear that if George Lucas ever understood why people liked the original trilogy, he had...

    I admit, I'm one of those people.

    My feeling is that the prequels are atrocious movies, and make it clear that if George Lucas ever understood why people liked the original trilogy, he had certainly forgotten by 1999. With that said, though, they tried. Lucas and his writers wanted to tell a new, ambitious story and they put their all into doing so, despite the blatant reality, over a period of years, that they clearly should not have. From Episode 1's opening on weird Asian-stereotype evil aliens pursuing a tedious and inept master plan to Episode 3's final Charlie Brown-esque kick-and-a-miss at Bush-era social commentary, the movies form a canon of very high-concept disaster. They are earnest garbage.

    To me, Episodes 7 and 8 are just cynical. They're debatably better -- I thought Force Awakens was OK -- but they're just two more loafs pinched off by the Disney Machine, devoid of risk or consequence. "Disney Loves You" and "Disney Hates You" blobs, respectively, with bland tone governed by JJ Abrams' mindless oversight. And then, despite all that, they fucked up immediately. I can't stand the Marvel movies, but as a commercial creation they're majestic, and for some reason the aim-for-the-middle dweebs that The Mouse put on the Star Wars case couldn't even do that right. Plus, the creative team that actually tried (I liked Solo) was hobbled by the fact that someone drove the stupid main-sequence new trilogy steamroller into a fucking ditch.

    Or, in a sentence, I respect the Prequel "try hard and make a big mess" approach, and I think that even in abject failure, a failure so profound that it's culturally significant in its own right, the result is more interesting than 7, 8, and (I'm guessing) 9.

    Separately, I would also argue that Episode 8's just simplistic -- moronic even, equal to if not worse than Episodes 1-3. It's tangential to my actual argument, so I won't stand on that hill. But jesus fuck were both of its space battle scenes stupid.

    2 votes
  8. Comment on Beto O'Rourke's Secret Membership in America's Oldest Hacking Group in ~news

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    Oh, for sure -- I didn't mean to imply that his writing isn't pretty edgy, just that it's about as edgy as I would expect a 16 year-old on a BBS to be. I'd almost be disappointed in him if it...

    It's pretty edgy imo, but some of it is a little more serious.

    Oh, for sure -- I didn't mean to imply that his writing isn't pretty edgy, just that it's about as edgy as I would expect a 16 year-old on a BBS to be. I'd almost be disappointed in him if it wasn't edgy.

    3 votes
  9. Comment on Shootings at Christchurch mosques in ~news

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    It's not a fun fact, but it's sort of interesting and related: The differing nomenclature for that kind of activity was super-politicized in Nazi Germany, and a bit of an obsession for Himmler in...

    So no, neither the resistance movements against the Nazis in WW2 and Insurgents and Iraq and Afghanistan are terrorists.

    It's not a fun fact, but it's sort of interesting and related: The differing nomenclature for that kind of activity was super-politicized in Nazi Germany, and a bit of an obsession for Himmler in particular. "Resisting non-soldier persons in occupied countries" were originally termed partisans, and the Nazi effort to combat them was termed partisanenkämpfung. In autumn of 1941, the Nazis began calling those efforts bandenbekämpfung, and the enemy combatants themselves "bandits", since "partisan" implies that people like Freddie Oversteegen were fighting/killing/sabotaging for a reason. In July 1942 Himmler specifically forbade use of the term "partisan".

    Sort of an academic difference, since partisanenkämpfung and bandenbekämpfung both ended up targeting regular civilian populations (notably Jewish ones) as a matter of course, but it's a distinction that they were definitely aware of, having deliberately re-classified "freedom fighters" as "terrorists".

    4 votes
  10. Comment on Beto O'Rourke's Secret Membership in America's Oldest Hacking Group in ~news

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    I'm on the same page as @doug3465; a president who was able to dial into a BBS would be a fun novelty. Moreover, I'm surprised and impressed to find out that O'Rourke has a personality. I'm in...

    I'm on the same page as @doug3465; a president who was able to dial into a BBS would be a fun novelty.

    Moreover, I'm surprised and impressed to find out that O'Rourke has a personality. I'm in California, so I wasn't paying a ton of attention to his most recent campaign, but all the national media really seemed to get across was that he was notably distinct from Human Biped Ted Cruz. For a 16 year-old on a BBS in 1988, his writing's not even inexplicably over-edgy.

    6 votes
  11. Comment on What (if anything) do you support through Patreon? in ~talk

    JuniperMonkeys Link
    Just a video series called Easy Russian, that does person-on-the-street interviews. They release often and do good work with subtitling (in Russian, transliterated Russian, and English), which is...

    Just a video series called Easy Russian, that does person-on-the-street interviews. They release often and do good work with subtitling (in Russian, transliterated Russian, and English), which is pretty rare, so that one is definitely worthwhile.

    I had also Patreon'd Cloth Map for quite a while, but the release consistency just wasn't there. I should add Tildes, as well, since my current method of "just PayPal money whenever I think of it" isn't the most effective method.

  12. Comment on Delete Never: The Digital Hoarders Who Collect Tumblrs, Medieval Manuscripts, and Terabytes of Text Files in ~tech

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    I think Pinboard's archives are exportable -- I don't use an archiving account, though, so I've never tested it.

    I think Pinboard's archives are exportable -- I don't use an archiving account, though, so I've never tested it.

    1 vote
  13. Comment on Chevy Volt discontinued: Chevrolet's last Volt rolls off the assembly line in ~news

    JuniperMonkeys Link
    I'm kind of surprised about the negativity towards series and "range-extended" hybrids versus pure-electrics in all the "Volt is dead" press.* To me, electric power for ~50 miles and the ability...

    I'm kind of surprised about the negativity towards series and "range-extended" hybrids versus pure-electrics in all the "Volt is dead" press.* To me, electric power for ~50 miles and the ability to conventionally fuel longer trips sounds absolutely ideal. I don't want to pay for 250 miles of battery when I might do a 200 mile trip only once a month, if that. Granted, there are some increases in mechanical complexity, but not particularly drastic ones, particularly compared to traditional hybrids. I feel like there's something really obvious I'm missing with regard to why a range-extended electric vehicle is a non-starter for most people.

    * I realize the Volt isn't technically a series hybrid, since over 70 MPH it does have a mechanical connection between the engine and drive wheels, but it's a convenient shorthand.

    2 votes
  14. Comment on r/Apple is legit? in ~talk

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    On what are you basing this? Are you using some other definition of "smaller devices"? Wear OS is in atrocious shape precisely because Qualcomm (evidently) doesn't give a shit about providing a...

    For smaller devices, despite Apple designing their own chips, those chips don't do anything particularly special either. [...] It isn't the hardware, in any way, on any device, that sets Apple products apart from the rest, but rather, the tight control and integration of the hardware in their lineup with the software in their ecosystem.

    On what are you basing this? Are you using some other definition of "smaller devices"? Wear OS is in atrocious shape precisely because Qualcomm (evidently) doesn't give a shit about providing a smartwatch SoC that can compete with Apple. As Ars Technica (their Android specialist, no less) put it, "Today, no component vendor sells a good smartwatch SoC that a company like Google can buy. Qualcomm is really the only game in town, and it doesn't seem to care about the smartwatch market. [...] I don't think it's possible to build a viable, competitive smartwatch using a Qualcomm chip."

    Hardware allows the Apple Watch, and to a lesser extent Samsung's Exynos-based smartwatches, to succeed where those using commodity SoCs are failing. To argue that the hardware is irrelevant seems wild. Google'd be happy to get the news, though.

    3 votes
  15. Comment on Bernie Sanders announces run for presidency in 2020 in ~news

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    I respect Warren for roughly the same reasons, but I think she's a disastrous candidate for this particular election. Aside from the general appeal you mention, my feeling is that she just hasn't...

    When you look at someone like Elizabeth Warren, I think she's a perfectly good candidate. Her policies would probably be comparable to Bernie's. She's younger, maybe she could get more support from a female base who wants to elect a woman. I am ready to hear out all of the dem candidates and I am specifically looking forward to see how a front-runner like Warren will brand her campaign. But my initial thoughts a priori are that she is comparable to Hillary, maybe a little more left, and a little more earnest. I don't see how she's going to appeal to Michigan or Wisconsin.

    I respect Warren for roughly the same reasons, but I think she's a disastrous candidate for this particular election. Aside from the general appeal you mention, my feeling is that she just hasn't demonstrated any command over the type of messaging that's effective at this point in time. That's no slight against her -- it's almost less respectable to be a forceful politician in 2018 -- but I just think her "public character" leaves space that'd be all too easy for Trump and his cronies to fill with rot. That she's an intelligent and experienced legislator is of less importance.

    I'm not sure Bernie or Biden can punch back at the caliber necessary either, but they've got their "crusty old lefty asshole" (which I mean as a positive) and "working class hero" personas to fall back on when they can't. A lot of people can't name a single thing about Warren besides the evident fact that she had a judgment failure when filling out a demographic form.

    She seems like she'd be a better president than a lot of the other options, but a worse candidate.

    3 votes
  16. Comment on Valentine's day in ~talk

    JuniperMonkeys (edited ) Link Parent
    Really well! Early tests proved inconclusive, but after the first couple pancakes I firmed up the mix with a bit more flour and made them thicker, so that they were better able to accommodate the...

    Really well! Early tests proved inconclusive, but after the first couple pancakes I firmed up the mix with a bit more flour and made them thicker, so that they were better able to accommodate the eggs. Seems like a slightly tougher pancake than I generally go for is key to the caking. Also eliminated the top pancake, since it had nothing to absorb and was a bit too dry. (which seems obvious in retrospect)

  17. Comment on War over being nice in ~misc

    JuniperMonkeys Link
    Has this not been clear? Is it that novel to recognize that treating people respectfully and working hard and well are valid paths to success? Has the author seriously never encountered a...

    And we need to negotiate an acceptable middle ground, where we accept both that others are affected by what we say, and that nobody can decide how you feel without your consent.

    Has this not been clear? Is it that novel to recognize that treating people respectfully and working hard and well are valid paths to success? Has the author seriously never encountered a workplace where you're expected to work productively with people whilst working productively? It feels like the "intellects vast and unsympathetic regard[ing] our Earth enviously" from the 1953 "War of the Worlds".

    A much better way is for the people involved to go off on their own, take some time to figure out their feelings (alone or with a confidant) and then calmly bring their feelings back to the person or group. Non-violent conversation is great for this - "When you say X, I feel Y. I have a need for Z, and that need isn't being met".

    What? That's not revelatory. Have I been wholly incubated in a California wearing-ties-to-work-is-what-a-crazy-person-does bubble? Did I just emerge, nutrient plugs akimbo, from the Nice Matrix? This was literally elementary-school material. This was taught before the parts of speech.

    Dealing with interpersonal conflict in culture B in a healthy way requires huge skill.

    No it doesn't! Just don't be an asshole! Were you raised by YouTube? When the author says this, I feel like I'm going crazy. Even if his conclusion that a middle ground should be sought rings true to me, it's like an opinion piece that ends with "What I'd prefer to breathe is a nice mix of nitrogen, oxygen, a little bit of argon, and a pinch of carbon dioxide for taste".

    Which is great. Seriously. Even if I dispute the author's sense of a "correct" middle ground being some drastic new conception, I'm glad that somebody with (apparently) a background completely alien to my own reaches the same conclusion.

    (I also dispute the author's brief aside that Culture A promotes rapid resolution of conflicts. My feeling is that there's a lot of noise, but that shit seeps into the environment -- evaluations are undermined, bonus or leaves are cancelled, change logs are altered. Every Culture A buttmunch loves to think "I am a perfectly rational being who airs my grievances openly and resolves them immediately", but the second they scrounge together the wherewithal their approach to workplace politics turns into spaghetti that would make the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet look like a Young Adult Finds Themself novel. And then they've just sideloaded themselves into Culture B.)

    3 votes
  18. Comment on A380: Airbus to end production of superjumbo in ~news

    JuniperMonkeys Link
    It's worth pointing out that the 747-8 is running out of, err, runway too. They're doing a big run (19) of 747-8F freighters for UPS, a couple for Volga-Dnepr Cargo and the government of Saudia...

    “What we’re seeing here is the end of the large, four-engine aircraft,” said Enders, who admitted that the company was a decade late in developing the superjumbo. Boeing, Airbus’s American arch-rival, this month celebrated 50 years of production of its 747.

    It's worth pointing out that the 747-8 is running out of, err, runway too. They're doing a big run (19) of 747-8F freighters for UPS, a couple for Volga-Dnepr Cargo and the government of Saudia Arabia, and then that's it for current orders. At this point Boeing's delivered the last passenger 747s they expect to, and see the future of non-cargo 747s as VIP-only.

  19. Comment on Valentine's day in ~talk

    JuniperMonkeys Link
    We do a thing where we make dumb cakes for occasions. Birthdays call for steak cakes, which is steak-mashed potatos-steak-mashed potatos or something to that effect. Since neither of us is...

    We do a thing where we make dumb cakes for occasions. Birthdays call for steak cakes, which is steak-mashed potatos-steak-mashed potatos or something to that effect. Since neither of us is inclined to go to a restaurant on a crowded Thursday, but because today is also our anniversary (well, originally, before we got married), we were thinking it's time to come up with an appropriate dumb cake. I was thinking pancake-bacon-eggs-pancake-bacon-eggs-pancake.

    5 votes
  20. Comment on Nintendo Direct - February 13, 2019 in ~games

    JuniperMonkeys Link Parent
    That mechanic was a really neat surprise. I'm excited about Crafted World too, and had honestly forgot it comes out so soon. Regarding the difficulty, though, unless things are very different I...

    That mechanic was a really neat surprise. I'm excited about Crafted World too, and had honestly forgot it comes out so soon.

    Regarding the difficulty, though, unless things are very different I wouldn't be surprised if the whole game is basically "easy mode". I don't know if you played Woolly World, but that could basically be completed while napping. Not that I hold it against Woolly World -- that game was charming as hell regardless of difficulty.

    3 votes