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Well I'll add my sample size to make it a sample of 2.

I don't really see people being told they cannot code. I see them being encouraged and encouraged... And they give up.

Because coding longer term often is a Temperament thing. The person learning.has to persevere banging their head against a brick wall ( their own skill, the lack of feedback from computers ) day in and day out.

That's not for everybody.

I am bemused that coding has such a mystique when in reality coding is something akin to metalwork combined with plumbing. Not everyone wants to be a plumber either, but most people could do a reasonable job if given a crash course and some context to use it in

You need a lot of confidence to start the Darien Scheme ( equivalent to Vasco da Gama )

Unlike da Gama, the Darien scheme ended in disaster for the whole of Scotland and the poor souls in Caledonia.



  "[Noise Cancelling Headphones] So while it may work to cancel the noise
  of your office air conditioner, it’s powerless against the voices of your co-workers
  (the real noise you’d want to cancel in an office environment)."
Um, this doesn't match my experience at all. My Bose noise cancelling headphones[1] are really effective at cancelling conversations.

Not completely cancelling mind you, but All-But-Cancelling.

You are playing music then too which further removes the voices, and you can play at a much lower volume for similar block-out-effects.

This does lead to some hilarious Boss-at-Shoulder moments when they have come to get your attention.

[1] https://www.bose.co.uk/GB/en/home-and-personal-audio/headpho...


Still not a replacement for silence. Do you find your ears becoming fatigued over the day?


I have the same model (QC20i). Ears do not get fatigued. Impressive technology to be honest, didn't think they were that effective before I used them. I do agree that it's not a solution, but probably the best way to adapt.


Those are not headphones. Those are in-ear earbuds. They likely block (physically) conversations much more than they cancel them.

I have over-ear noise-cancelling headphones and they don't do a lot for conversational tones. They're great for planes, and they're great for mowing. They don't do much for people talking nearby (beyond the passive blocking they do) unless I turn the volume way up.


One part Gimmick, two parts Chart Junk with a large dash of Navel Gazing and a squeeze of Self Re-inforcement.

This is almost the Comfortable Middle Class version of the Find-your-way-through-a-Maze puzzles that you find on paper placemats in roadside Burger Restaurants.


Awesome. I love Songkick !

And while Songkickers are reading HN, can I suggest a feature ?

Sending me news on my Followed artists.

Leftfield are touring and Songkick helped me get a ticket... but I would've also liked to know that Leftfield have a new album coming out ( Alternative Light Source ). I'm a bit removed from the scene and that would've been helpful.

If they made it easy enough I may have ordered the CD via Songkick too for referral fees


I've really wanted a service that does this for a while. Even following the artist in Spotify seems to only sometimes actually send a notification when they have a new release.


That's a good suggestion, thanks. We're always interested in how people use Songkick and what they'd like to see next.


Can he not switch to a Pr0n CC payment channel ??

They've had problems forever with mainstream channels.

CCBill perhaps.


It's VISA and MC that are the problem, not Stripe, they are simply operating under terms dictated to them by the card companies and the feds.

If you want to make money with something legally grey don't point the finger at companies who are in a tight spot when it comes to dependencies on such entities. Credit card processing is not an in-alienable right.


Well Visa and MC have problems with pr0n too... Hence the existence of fringe CCBill / Epoch etc.

Visa and MC don't mind so much if some other party is taking the risk.


Could you not simply tweet a hash of a document that has the secret IP in it?

Then should the case come to court, you link to the Twitter tweet to show the submitted date, and produce the document for the court. The court hashes the document, does a comparison... The court accepts your argument

No need for anything more complex. There are hashes out there with few collisions


You could, sure, but that depends on Twitter still being around if/when the case comes to court. The blockchain, being independently held and cross-verified at every node of the network, is more reliable in this regard.


Maybe just publish a sha512 hash of the document in a newspaper classifieds section... If the goal was to have recorded evidence for posterity.

I wonder what the odds are that the current block-chains will be active in 70 years? Probably lower than the likelihood that all public tweets are recorded in the library of congress or some similar institution.

Does a 60 year old archive of a block-chain that "lived" for 15 years of any value? It could probably be "faked" with a cluster of machines and some time?

At any rate for things like a paper, we already have the ability to go and get a document notarized somewhere -- and that has much more legal precedent than some clever mathematical hack.

Would be interesting to see law firms offer "adding to and helping maintain" a block chain as a supplement to regular notary service though.

[ed: Ah, contributing to the slashdotifization of hn. I see that the article is about a company that tries to do this. I still wonder about what happens if/when "everyone" moves away from (the current) bitcoin (chain) to a new protocol. I suppose it could be "easy" to log the current state of the old chain, in a new chain. Would make verification more complicated though?].


I Agree. But I guess that the Library of Congress (and archive.com and Google Blockchains) will also save a copy of the major blockchais, but not of every obscure altcoin. Some anthropologists and economists may find them interesting. But then you will have to thrust again a central authority, and the magic of the totally decentralized blockchain will be lost.

Another possibility when it's clear that another coin is surpassing Bitcoin is to "register" the Bitcoin blockchain in the new blockchain, just store into the new blockchain a copy of the current sha1. (Or a harder hash of all the blockchain, to eliminate the possibility of collisions found with faster machines.)


> The blockchain, being independently held and cross-verified at every node of the network, is more reliable in this regard.

Is it? That question is just as open as it is for Twitter, and given the order of magnitude differences in inefficiency of a blockchain versus Twitter there still remains the question of why people would burn electricity just to act as DRM for corporate trademarks.

This is an interesting technical hack in the same way as using Emscripten to run a GameBoy emulator in a Linux running on a toaster perhaps, but no one buys toasters for the purpose of playing GameBoy games.


Maybe all this "BTC blockchain as a platform" stuff is too tangential and undermines (no pun intended) the potency of BTC as a cryptocurrency.

Maybe there could be a "Platform Test Coin" to beta test all these far out ideas, then spin off the successful projects to their own independent alt coins?

Even assuming the BTC network can handle a lot of bloat, wouldn't it be cheaper for users of XYZ platform to use a (less expensive) altcoin blockchain? I'm not an expert on inserting data into a blockchain, just thinking out loud here.


Or just file it at the USPTO. It may not be in patent form, and thus not granted as a patent, but it would be published and time-date stamped.


Sure you could. The baseline idea is exactly the same, you only changed the medium upon which your proof stands.

I am not sure if twitter (or any proprietary social network) is good enough for this specific use-case. The blockchain seems to me, to be more reliable, although more complex. But the procedure (and complexity) can be automated (hidden).


It's convenient to blame the finance peeps. But wrong.

It is a face saving measure by the people actually responsible, namely Pension Funds and Government Policy makers in that order.

Pension Funds were chasing returns... and finance types depend on Pension funding at many levels. Pension funds own 95+ percent of the stockmarket shares overall and in some cases closer to 100%. Shareholders elect the board who appoint the staff. Further Hedge Funds do not hedge their own money exclusively. They sell to outside people, ultimately again mostly coming from Pension Funds.

Government agencies like Alan Greenspan had the option to use their blunt tools to control matters via interest rates and perhaps policy changes. They chose not to do so.

To me it is like a Railway Tycoon shouting "faster faster.." to the train drivers and then blaming the driver of the day when a massive accident happens. Even if the driver is reckless... who hired they guy and gave guidance to ignore the warning signals ??


It's convenient to blame the pension funds. But wrong.

Pension funds only started chasing returns after the crisis.

Why did they do that? Because the government made a policy decision to drop interest rates like a stone.

Why did they do that? Because the too big to fail banks were sitting on a pile of mortgages without sufficient collateral because of a popping bubble that they created and they couldn't withstand the potential onslaught of defaults.

They were exposed and insolvent and in danger of being destroyed unless quick political action was taken.

Fortunately, for them, quick political action was taken and they were saved from facing the consequences of their actions. We had to deal with them instead.


Your point in general that public pension funds have investigated in riskier assets over time is correct, but your claim that the 2008 crisis had any significant uptick after the 2008 crisis is quite simply false. Honestly, to make a claim like that and present no data to back it up is... unhelpful


By far, the largest uptick in the shift from low risk bonds to higher risk assets like equities was in the 80s, but it's been happening longer than that. You could make a claim that there has been an increased shift to alternative assets since the crisis, but you didn't, and the uptick isn't massive anyway.


That's not correct. Spreads before the crisis were at records lows and asset managers had to buy credit they would have preferred not to in order to get a little bit of value. This is really what fuelled the whole subprime story.


Dude, they've always chased returns... It didn't magically start happening post 2008

The sub funds that Pensions invest in get rewarded according to Alpha... the amount the sub fund exceeded the main stock price movement.

How is that not chasing returns??



Pension funds used to be highly invested in government bonds, which are risk-free. The risks they did take were, by and large, reasonable and minimal. They owned some shares as well, of course.

They weren't taking outsized risks in order to chase an outsized gain - "chasing returns" as you put it.

2008 changed all that.

Once government debt yields dropped to zero (done to save the bankers' hides), in order to still maintain the same returns which they needed, they started chasing returns.

This was more done out of desperation than greed. They had made promises pre-crisis that presumed the economy would continue as normal - exactly what economists and bankers of the time promised us would happen.


They're highly invested in literally everything. Again they own the shares in the companies that own other assets. They do buy government bonds as an asset class but have a diversified approach where they own FX, property etc.

The only non pension funds who own anything substantial are governments. Private holdings are vanishingly small.

Who do you think owned the shares in the banks that took all the risks? 99% Pension Funds. Even if the Pension Funds had 85% as Government Bonds, from the rest they still owned 99% of the banks and hedge funds and private equity.


Yes, pension funds do have investments in a lot of things. Some did own banking shares, too, though banks were not 99% owned by pensioners.

Holding bank shares is a suckers' game, however. Real money is made in bonuses:


Control is more important than holding a share certificate entitling you to a residual claim on profits.


pension funds used to invest in gilts back in the 50's your out by decades


I've used Feel At Home extensively in Australia, Hong Kong and France.

Data is plentiful ( up to 25GB ) but subjectively I found it quite slow

No tethering from iPhones... a real shit and I don't know why they structured it this way

Phone calls are inclusive if you're calling UK phone numbers. Great if you're calling your wife or mates. Calls to local numbers in the country you are staying are not included.

All in all an excellent package. It covers a lot of very common use cases although not truly everything. Costs absolutely slashed.


95% of people make any decision based on what their peer group does. Only 5% make up their own mind on any given issue.

This changes issue by issue and people who make up their own mind on some issues, follow the 95% peer group on others.

This is the most revelatory insight for me from a book packed to the brim with insights and science and evidence and wit



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