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Thread to discuss negative things in a very general way, just see where it goes y'know?


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On 8/16/2020 at 4:52 AM, richfiles said:

And as I said... I'm no fan of Epic, but the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

This is the act of the desperate.  Never think the enemy of your enemy is your friend.  They may do some things that benefit you, but never think them your friend.

 

On 8/16/2020 at 4:52 AM, richfiles said:

For the time being. Yes, of course they want more of the money. Every business does. Money is their end game, but ultimately it does benefit the consumer if Apple's monopoly over App distribution and in app payment processing is opened up. If the force trying to make that happen is doing it for greedy reasons.

This is a complex situation.  Even changing the base case isn't necessarily good.  And this becomes a precedence that can go to surprising cases.  I don't know enough about all this to be sure this change can't be twisted to make things worse.

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I have this solar powered watch that needs to be sunbathed for a few hours every half a year or so to recharge the battery. Today I realized that I haven't done it in a while and figured I might as well do it now, so I take it off my wrist, put it in the sun and promptly look at my wrist to check time.

I'm an idiot.

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On 8/17/2020 at 7:55 PM, Jacke said:

I don't know enough about all this

I'm definitely no lawyer myself, but I routinely spend hours each week listening to one. I hope I've picked up at least a few details from the guy on the application of law, over my past two years listening.

I have followed the Epic situation since before they became the supposed "bad guy". Does anyone here even remember a few years back when they were lauded as the supposed heroes video gaming needed? They were all for fighting for a better cut for developers, even before they ever started buying out exclusivity and trying to shill their awful store. They even offered fair incentives, like free license to their Unreal engine, in exchange for distribution on their store. Honestly, the more this situation progresses, the less I actually dislike them. I hate that they have such strong connections to Tencent (They own 40% of Epic), and I hate that they've used their Fortnite money so forcefully to push their mediocre store through bought timed exclusivity... But even in doing so, they still take a smaller cut than Steam does... For all you might hate their store or their Chinese connections, or them pushing money around, Epic actually seems to walk the walk, talk the talk, and really does give a bigger cut of the pie to the developers. They have never once faltered from that policy, and I can legit respect that. Additionally, when so many other companies were bending the knee to China over the Blitzchung debacle last year, Tim Sweeny and Epic actually stood their ground in defense of free speech, defying China and Tencent, stating "Epic supports everyone's right to express their views on politics and human rights. We wouldn't ban or punish a Fortnite player or content creator for speaking on these topics"... Would they follow through on that defense? Who knows. It still took guts to say it when other corporate shills, Apple included, absolutely bent the knee to China. What did we vilify Epic for again? Being 40% owned by Tencent and shilling a shoddy, awful store with bought and paid for timed exclusives? Still don't like the Tencent bit, but they've openly stood up against them. The rest... People are just whiny cause they gotta wait to buy a game on Steam. Boo freakin' hoo. I don't have Epic installed on anything I own. I choose not to use it, but I'm less inclined to call them a "bad guy" these days. I realized it won't kill me to wait 6 months for a game I probably didn't care that much about anyway. I'll still probably wait 2 or 3 years and buy it when it's marked down to under $20 or something anyway. Besides... We whine about the timed Epic exclusives, but it's become clear since they started do ing that, that they are paying developers "don't worry about the future" money... Epic is taking gambles on developers product selling well, and basically giving them the money, and then some, up front. Again... Gamers might not like that they can't buy some game for another 6 months on Steam, but in doing that, Epic has taken all the worry and stress from a developer. They no longer have to worry that their game will make enough of a return. I really am becoming more and more tolerant of Epic with each day that passes.

As for Apple, I've been following the path Apple's taken since 1992, and I keep a keen eye on them today. I know about their history extensively, from start to present day... I've also been following Apple's legal battles since at least 2014, and have been looking for ways to actually lobby against Apple at the legislative level in my state. I'm serious about my disgust in Apple's anti-consumer behaviors. Once all this pandemic garbage is dealt with, and I know my state is having hearings relevant to Apple again, I plan to drive the 2 hours and attend, even speak out, if the opportunity arises. Where Epic might be an annoying company, I'd legitimately call Apple outright evil. The things they have done to their consumers, their workers, and even to their competitors is appalling. I used to love Apple computers... Now I loathe the very thought of buying one... I don't want to even give them a penny. I'd feel dirty. I use Mac OS, but only on stock PC hardware, using a custom "Hackintosh" boot loader. The reality, is that even Mac OS is drifting so far away from what I once enjoyed, that I barely recognize the modern variants anymore, and really don't want to upgrade (not to mention, that said upgrades even brick a number of apps I routinely use). I'm on the verge of setting up my final hackintosh build... The most powerful machine I can muster, and then running that in a VM on top of Linux or Windows or something... I think I'm forever done with anything but vintage Apple. Apple disgusts me through and through. Apple makes Epic look like saints.

I can't really tell you what I actually think about Apple... Those words are not allowed here. :mad:
It amazes me, that only a meager 10 years ago, I still anticipated Mac World keynote speeches by Steve Jobs like it was Christmas morning presents...
Tim Cook... What have you done to Apple...

I'm just worked up from dealing with the uninformed hordes from youtube, twitter, even here...
all trying to tell me what's what, thinking they know everything, but never actually knowing anything... :huh:

 

On a side note... I've already chipped my brand new phone screen. At least it's the top corner this time, so it's not constantly irritating my palm when I hold the phone.
(An Android phone, with the ability to side load apps, and no App Store or Apple Payment system monopolies! yay!)

Edited by richfiles
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23 minutes ago, richfiles said:

I'm definitely no lawyer myself, but I routinely spend hours each week listening to one. I hope I've picked up at least a few details from the guy on the application of law, over my past two years listening.

I have followed the Epic situation since before they became the supposed "bad guy". Does anyone here even remember a few years back when they were lauded as the supposed heroes video gaming needed? They were all for fighting for a better cut for developers, even before they ever started buying out exclusivity and trying to shill their awful store. They even offered fair incentives, like free license to their Unreal engine, in exchange for distribution on their store. 

This isn't so much about Epic particularly as about people and corporations in general.

When they need to break into a market, when they need to compete, that's when they do the most for the end customers, the common people who use their product.

But as both get successful and rich, most degrade into less altruistic behaviour and outright selfishness and greed.  There are a few that remain more principled, but it's damn rare.

Epic already crossed the line when they started bribing developers and publishers for Epic Store exclusives.  I fully expect them to continue down the messy path well trod before.

As far as I can tell, both the Apple Store and Google Play are not common carriers.  They're not required to allow any to use their service and can provide reasonable restrictions on those who want to sell their games via their stores.  There are problems with restrictions.  But there are also benefits.

I see no way that a legal decision for Epic in these cases will benefit us in the long run.

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17 hours ago, Jacke said:

Epic already crossed the line when they started bribing developers and publishers for Epic Store exclusives. 

But that's not crossing a line. Sony does that. Nintendo does that. Microsoft does that. But Epic, is villified? Epic is paying developers up front, whether their game is a success or not... That's relief money. That's the developer doesn't have to worry money. Epic did nothing wrong buying exclusives. It's annoying, yes... But it's not wrong, and they did it in a way that was HUGELY beneficial for developers... Again, them standing behind developers. <snip> It's not a bribe. Plain and simple. <snip>

17 hours ago, Jacke said:

As far as I can tell, both the Apple Store and Google Play are not common carriers.  They're not required to allow any to use their service and can provide reasonable restrictions on those who want to sell their games via their stores.

And on Android, I don't have to use the Google Play Store. I can side load an app, and that app can use it's own payment system.
Apple prevents this. They make it impossible to side load apps without jailbreaking the device.
This makes Apple's App Store an absolute monopoly on the iPhone. Apple actively prevents independent apps or independent app stores from operating on the iPhone.
This is compounded by Apple forcing their Apple transaction payment system for all apps in the App Store... This can't be avoided, cause Apple doesn't permit side loading apps.
This is a transactional monopoly, enforced by a store monopoly.

It can be argued that this violates anti-trust laws. Epic is making this argument. Bravo!

17 hours ago, Jacke said:

I see no way that a legal decision for Epic in these cases will benefit us in the long run.

Epic has every real chance of winning this one, and WE ALL WIN if they win. If you don't have the vision to see that... That's just too bad...
Epic's long term goal is to try to get a judge to tell Apple they have to permit side loaded apps and side loaded app stores, just like on Android.

Their case against Google is very unlikely to get far, and heres where lawyering comes into play... Epic won't admit this, but they are perfectly fine if a Judge throws out the Google case, and lets the Apple case proceed. That very action becomes a part of the arguments. If the court says Google is okay, and the lawsuit against them is unfounded, but also lets the Apple case move forward, it serves to argue to the court the differences between the two cases has already been demonstrably highlighted by the court itself, and highlights that there is something more troubling going on with Apple. In the off chance things do move forward with Google... Chances it'll just settle, and Epic will get at least something out of it.

The significant relevant case is the Apple case exclusively. Epic has gone into this asking for no monetary compensation. They know that if they win, they win with revenue. Not asking for monetary compensation helps their argument by letting it focus on the goal of forcing Apple to open up.

Epics first goal, and the one they have the best chance of winning, is to have a judge tell Apple to open up app side loading, and to not restrict developers from creating independent apps, outside of the App store.
The second goal is to ensure that side loaded apps can use whatever financial transaction systems they want, and to prevent Apple from hampering such functionality.

Their third goal involves Google and Apple both, and is the least likely to succeed. They would like to eliminate Apple's monopoly over financial transactions on apps distributed even on the App Store/Play Store. This is not that likely to succeed, and is almost as likely to be judged on the mood or whim of the judge, and how they end up perceiving Apple through the remainder of the anti-trust case.

The way this benefits the consumer... US, is that it gives us more choice. It gives us options for Apps that aren't forced to be subjected to Apple's draconian censorship policies, their political nitpicking, or subject to their 30% "Apple tax". Epic themselves demonstrated how we can all benefit. Their very protest offered users a 20% discount on buying Fortnite's in app currency through a non Apple payment system. Epic got an extra 10%, and the customer got 20% off. It's a win win. Apple has been blocking Stadia, Microsoft xCloud, and Nvidia Geforce Now cloud gaming services. Apple has even blocked the Facebook app, till they removed parts of the Facebook Gaming function. Apple has draconian rules in place that are unfairly targeting or outright blocking competition... Apple Arcade works just fine though. The App Store is an ABSOLUTE monopoly, and is absolutely violating anti-trust laws. Epic just needs to argue before a judge that this is the truth, and that intervention by law is necessary to deal with the growing bad Apple problem.

Apple's App Store monopoly is a very negative thing, in general!

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On 8/18/2020 at 9:31 AM, Shpaget said:

I have this solar powered watch that needs to be sunbathed for a few hours every half a year or so to recharge the battery. Today I realized that I haven't done it in a while and figured I might as well do it now, so I take it off my wrist, put it in the sun and promptly look at my wrist to check time.

I'm an idiot.

You're Icarus.

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19 hours ago, richfiles said:

Sony does that. [Pay for exclusives.] Nintendo does that. Microsoft does that. But Epic is villified?

Never said it was right for the others.  Never said I support Apple or Google here.  I say a pox on all 3 houses.

 

Quote

Epic is paying developers up front, whether their game is a success or not... That's relief money. That's the developer doesn't have to worry money.

There's no such thing as a free lunch.  I'm Canadian, so I don't have to pay directly when I visit a doctor.  But my taxes pay for it.  The benefit comes from being single-payer health care.

And here's another cliché that's also true: who pays the piper calls the tune.  Epic isn't giving away money.  They're using their deep pockets to exert control.  For Epic's benefit, not ours.

 

Quote

Epic did nothing wrong buying exclusives. It's annoying, yes... But it's not wrong, and they did it in a way that was HUGELY beneficial for developers... Again, them standing behind developers.

Then why do people who know the game industry well and have followed it for years think this is not all sunshine and roses, like Jim Sterling and Yong Yea.

 

Quote

...you are annoyed that it may affect when or where you an enjoy a particular game.

<snip>

I actually don't have a dog in this hunt, as I've not been interested in the games affected by all this flinging around of exclusives.  But I see that this is all about restricting open marketplaces for games for these corporations own benefits.  It applies to all parties.  Google and Apple want to keep what control they've established (with Apple being more restrictive) and their revenue streams.  Epic doesn't want to give Google and Apple a cut of their revenue stream.

And Epic's campaign of being the people's true altruistic champion in 2020 is as honest as Apple's was in 1984, as in not at all for both.  And both are insulting comparing themselves to far graver threats portrayed in _1984_.

Anti-trust arguments are very complex here.  Part of Apple's motivation for their tight set-up is security.  It's true, but it also benefits Apple financially.  I suspect the solutions that will be right will be very close to those that put limits on interest rates.

I'm at least wise enough to know that all these corporations aren't my friend and very few of their actions are for my benefit.

 

Edited by Jacke
Removed forum rule violating comments.
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On 8/14/2020 at 8:28 AM, TheSaint said:

Apple: It just works. Until it doesn't.

my 5th gen ipod still works. not that this is an apple endorsement or anything. i attribute this to jailbreaking it and installing rockbox not long after i bought it. the death counter is effectively disabled. my opinion of consumer tech products these days is pretty low. 

Edited by Nuke
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18 minutes ago, Nuke said:

my 5th gen ipod still works. not that this is an apple endorsement or anything. i attribute this to jailbreaking it and installing rockbox not long after i bought it. the death counter is effectively disabled. my opinion of consumer tech products these days is pretty low. 

We have an iPad mini that my wife won in a raffle five years ago. Still operates just fine, but more and more apps refuse to work on it because Apple stopped issuing updates for the OS. Owning it has not created any urge in me to buy any more Apple products.

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Okay, folks, I know it is easy for things to become heated when we begin discussing anything we are personally interested in. This forum is the perfect place for those kinds of discussions providing we do not let our passions override our commitments to follow the forum guidelines.

A few posts in this thread have been edited to remove personal attacks and some profanity filter skirting. Both of those are frowned upon in this forum. If you want to discuss the nature of businesses, Apple, or whatever else comes up in this thread, feel free to do so but let's leave the personal attacks and other forum rule-breaking things out of it.

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2 hours ago, TheSaint said:

We have an iPad mini that my wife won in a raffle five years ago. Still operates just fine, but more and more apps refuse to work on it because Apple stopped issuing updates for the OS. Owning it has not created any urge in me to buy any more Apple products.

They evolve pretty quickly. I have products that are Windows, Mac OS, and iOS. The distinction between the last 2 is entirely disappearing soon when Apple goes ARM, as MacOS (while still a Unix flavor) will natively run all iOS apps. That said I don;t run many iOS apps on my iPhone. I text, I browse, I listen to stuff, and I use the camera. Thinking of replacing the iMac I am typing this on right now with a new one (8 core i7, with a 5700XT GPU with 16 GB RAM). This Mac? 2013. Uptime? Since we had the past power failure when someone hit a telephone pole with a car, or maybe there was an OS update that required a restart (not on the latest OS), otherwise since I first turned it on. My phone has been pretty reliable, no issues I can think of. <shrug>

My PCs also work, though they get restarted more than the Mac.

 

 

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4 hours ago, Nuke said:

my 5th gen ipod still works. not that this is an apple endorsement or anything. i attribute this to jailbreaking it and installing rockbox not long after i bought it. the death counter is effectively disabled. my opinion of consumer tech products these days is pretty low. 

The iPods were always pretty robust. Apple of that era actually put together some decent hardware. I have an iPod Mini. It's had three batteries, was updated to a Compact Flash 16GB card, then later upgraded to a 128GB MicroSD card, in a glorious tangle of adapters... 128 GB Micro SD in a MicroSD to SD adapter, SD Adapter inside an SD to Compact Flash adapter, and that plugged into the Micro Drive plug (micro IDE shares the same pinout as compact flash). The iPod was made 15 years ago, and amazingly, it all holds together and all still works. That's the Apple that I miss... The one that made reliable, capable, repairable, and upgradable products. Too bad they're gone...
 

7 hours ago, Jacke said:

I actually don't have a dog in this hunt,

Anti-trust arguments are very complex here.  Part of Apple's motivation for their tight set-up is security.

That's fair, and I'll apologize for the way I worded what I'd typed.
I intended to mean PC/Steam users in general, but I VERY much worded that in a way that focused all that frustration through you. Sorry 'bout that.
What I was trying to say, regarding words like "bribes", is that when a person already has a set viewpoint of a company (the way Steam users typically view Epic in a negative light), it's very easy to use words that further vilify. Replacing "contract" or "deal" with a word like "bribe" is one such a way to do that, and was what I was trying to call out with that statement. Again, I meant no offense.

Unfortunately, "Security" is the go-to corporate cry against opening up a platform. The argument against Apple in regards to that claim... Is Google itself. Has Google's open platform, that happens to support side loading, collapsed under security flaws? Nope... Good! Apple can open up side loading too then! That's what I want to hear from a Judge. The fact that Google's Android platform exists in a stable and reliable state is all the proof that side loading is demonstrably not a major security flaw.

The financial argument is also simple... Epic can have App Store versions of their apps that will cost more, but will also get the publicity of being searchable in the primary Apple App store. Thing is, if Epic succeeds, they could also have a separate side-loaded Epic launcher, or offer direct downloads from the web that would allow installation of Non-App Store versions of their games. Those versions would not get advertising in the main App Store, but for users savvy enough to know where to look, they could get discounts by running those side-loaded versions. Epic would still have an incentive to keep a version in the App Store (search visibility), but they (and other developers and publishers) would then have additional alternative options. Hopefully that makes some sense.

Edited by richfiles
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36 minutes ago, richfiles said:

That's fair, and I'll apologize for the way I worded what I'd typed.

No problem.

 

36 minutes ago, richfiles said:

I intended to mean PC/Steam users in general, but I VERY much worded that in a way that focused all that frustration through you. Sorry 'bout that.
What I was trying to say, regarding words like "bribes", is that when a person already has a set viewpoint of a company (the way Steam users typically view Epic in a negative light), it's very easy to use words that further vilify. Replacing "contract" or "deal" with a word like "bribe" is one such a way to do that, and was what I was trying to call out with that statement. Again, I meant no offense.

Well, as a Steam user, when I see games go up exclusively on the Epic store--which I'm unlikely to use--I feel a loss, even if the exclusive is temporary.  Then I look at it again and remember that the closest I've come to wanting an Epic exclusive game is Rebel Galaxy Outlaw.  And  I've not spent the time to come close to finishing the original Rebel Galaxy.

"Bribe", like a lot of strong words, gets misused, as you've mentioned often from a lot of emotion.  But at least in North America and Europe, there's few outright bribes.  But there's a lot of over-sharp actions, with a lot of these put into contracts.  And contracts often have terms that limit what we as consumers get as benefits.  And in the end, if the exchange of funds happens, there's always a bit of getting the power to call the tune.

 

36 minutes ago, richfiles said:

Unfortunately, "Security" is the go-to corporate cry against opening up a platform. The argument against Apple in regards to that claim... Is Google itself. Has Google's open platform, that happens to support side loading, collapsed under security flaws? Nope... Good! Apple can open up side loading too then! That's what I want to hear from a Judge. The fact that Google's Android platform exists in a stable and reliable state is all the proof that side loading is demonstrably not a major security flaw.

Well, as a network administrator, I kind of feel security in a lot of the platforms doesn't get properly or sufficiently addressed.  (Especially as the user needs to be aware and cautious.)  To a degree, Apple's closed garden is a bit more secure.  But it's not impossible to get equivalent security in other means.  And using it as a club to ensure a captive paying audience is a bit of an abuse.

And all of the meta-services that enable what we do--for a cut--are to a degree anti-competetive.  I feel it has to go beyond just anti-trust to actions that limit interest rates.  As the interest rate limits are avoided in various ways, it will be a far-from-perfect solution.

I don't think a decision in these suites will significant change the landscape.  But I could be wrong.  But I think they'll need legislation to make a proper level playing field.  And I think it may come from Europe, where they do realise that appropriate regulation can often be a better solution.

Whatever happens, it's going to take a while.

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6 hours ago, Nuke said:

my 5th gen ipod still works. not that this is an apple endorsement or anything. i attribute this to jailbreaking it and installing rockbox not long after i bought it.

I bought a 5th Gen Rockbox - I mean iPod - and only ever booted up the iPod interface on it twice. Once on day 1 to make sure it worked before installing Rockbox, and once after installing Rockbox to show a friend you could install Rockbox and still boot to the iPod interface.

I still have it somewhere and I'm sure it still works, but I've since moved on to an Android phone with all my music on it. But 15 years ago man it was groundbreaking. And by "it" I mean Rockbox. :D

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12 hours ago, Superfluous J said:

I bought a 5th Gen Rockbox - I mean iPod - and only ever booted up the iPod interface on it twice. Once on day 1 to make sure it worked before installing Rockbox, and once after installing Rockbox to show a friend you could install Rockbox and still boot to the iPod interface.

I still have it somewhere and I'm sure it still works, but I've since moved on to an Android phone with all my music on it. But 15 years ago man it was groundbreaking. And by "it" I mean Rockbox. :D

i dont see me replacing it with a phone any time soon, i dont like phones. i figure id make a go at building my own mp3 player from scratch at some point when my doompod breaks down. maybe a pi zero with a 128 gig card would hold all my music. all the work is in the power system really.

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8 hours ago, Nuke said:

i dont see me replacing it with a phone any time soon, i dont like phones. i figure id make a go at building my own mp3 player from scratch at some point when my doompod breaks down. maybe a pi zero with a 128 gig card would hold all my music. all the work is in the power system really.

I tell you if Rockbox was complied as a mobile app I'd install it in a heartbeat. I'd even toss 'em a few coins like they were Witchers.

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Some bad news in our area, which is reverberating through the daycare world. A four-year-old child was struck and killed by a falling tree while on a nature walk at daycare. A teacher was also injured trying to grab the kid out of the way. This child used to go to a daycare my wife worked at, so she's a little shook up too.

It's left them wondering not only why (as in "Why God, why?") but how it could have been prevented. I assume the tree was felled by wind; I don't recall how windy it was that day. I'm left wondering if a large bird, such as an eagle or heron which are known to nest in the area, would be enough to give a rotten tree the push it needs while taking off or landing?

Licensing will probably take this and say "No more nature walks! You can't control what happens"

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1 hour ago, StrandedonEarth said:

Some bad news in our area, which is reverberating through the daycare world. A four-year-old child was struck and killed by a falling tree while on a nature walk at daycare. A teacher was also injured trying to grab the kid out of the way. This child used to go to a daycare my wife worked at, so she's a little shook up too.

My sympathy on this tragedy.

What I think should be done is making sure all trees are living and well-rooted.  And adults need to be aware of risks and their degree.

Falling trees are more of a hazard than many might think.  Jared Diamond mentioned this in an article.

https://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/29/science/jared-diamonds-guide-to-reducing-lifes-risks.html

Quote

...the biggest single lesson that I’ve learned from 50 years of field work on the island of New Guinea: the importance of being attentive to hazards that carry a low risk each time but are encountered frequently.

I first became aware of the New Guineans’ attitude toward risk on a trip into a forest when I proposed pitching our tents under a tall and beautiful tree. To my surprise, my New Guinea friends absolutely refused. They explained that the tree was dead and might fall on us.

Yes, I had to agree, it was indeed dead. But I objected that it was so solid that it would be standing for many years. The New Guineans were unswayed, opting instead to sleep in the open without a tent.

I thought that their fears were greatly exaggerated, verging on paranoia. In the following years, though, I came to realize that every night that I camped in a New Guinea forest, I heard a tree falling. And when I did a frequency/risk calculation, I understood their point of view.

Consider: If you’re a New Guinean living in the forest, and if you adopt the bad habit of sleeping under dead trees whose odds of falling on you that particular night are only 1 in 1,000, you’ll be dead within a few years. In fact, my wife was nearly killed by a falling tree last year, and I’ve survived numerous nearly fatal situations in New Guinea.

The risk on a single  encounter is low.  But the shear number of encounters means the risk is significant.

I have a friend who applied this lesson and was saved from a falling tree.

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On 8/20/2020 at 4:42 PM, Superfluous J said:

I tell you if Rockbox was complied as a mobile app I'd install it in a heartbeat. I'd even toss 'em a few coins like they were Witchers.

id love a raspberry pi port. the rockbox community usually responds with something like "just use linux". problem is every time i use linux for something simple, it stops being simple. especially when you are trying to conserve battery power. for this application you want your code a bit on the lean side and very friendly to low power modes. 

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On 8/19/2020 at 10:19 PM, Superfluous J said:

I still have it [iPod] somewhere and I'm sure it still works, but I've since moved on to an Android phone with all my music on it.

I have some of my favorite tunes on my Android phone... But I still carry my ancient but very trusty iPod around. There's one thing I can't get on a smartphone, and that is the tactile feel of the physical controls. Maybe there are better interfaces than the iPod, or better music player firmware, like Rockbox, but for me, nothing beats the ability to feel the controls without looking down. I've tried to use my phone as a music player, and while I can, it's always limited by needing to look at it to see the onscreen interface. Voice can't always be relied on where I live, as voice controls I think "call in" to a server for processing, and there are a few dead zones in the rural area where I live.

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Radio ads that have car horns/accident sound effects are something that will instantly convince me not to support the advertised company, I usually drive with it turned off for the added awareness but the few times I do have it on and get surprised by one of those is a sure way to know how either desperate or uncaring for the listener a company is

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