Lessons from the Printer

The other day, my printer started giving me trouble. A green light kept flashing that normally never flashes. An amber light was illuminated and a dangerous looking red light was flashing over the door for the ink cartridges. I pushed the button for printing out the diagnostic page and the results were not good. While the print heads were in fine shape and the ink cartridges more than half full, the pink cartridge had expired. In fact, it had expired last year, meaning I had be using an ink corpse for almost a year.

I removed the pink, which is called magenta for some reason, and examined it. I did not see any signs of decomposition, so I put it back in and the lights returned to normal. I was able to print whatever it was I was printing. The next time I tried to print something, the bad lights lit up and I had to go through the same process. For some reason, taking the cartridge out and putting it back in tells the printer to ignore its own concerns about the fitness of the ink cartridge, but only for one print session.

Of course, expiry dates on ink cartridges are ridiculous. In theory the thing can dry up, but that’s just another version of empty. The whole point of doing this is to force users into buying new printers. In my case, the ink replacements will cost twice what I paid for the printer. Only an idiot would do that, so I’ll buy a new printer for $100. Apparently, something happens to ink cartridges to make them cheaper when they are wrapped with a new printer. That means trashing a working printer because pink has expired.

Imagine buying a cheap compact car and finding out that a brake job or a new set of tires costs more than the car. That would never happen, of course, because public outrage would force the government to crack down on the car makers. Built-in obsolescence is fine if it only applies to styles or fashion. When it is part of the engineering process of a good, then the state is expected to step in and put an end to the practice. Planned obsolescence is a form of fraud. The maker is using insider knowledge to trick you.

There has been at least one court case over the practice of the obsoleting of ink cartridges by HP. The resolution was a few million bucks, nothing to discourage the printer oligopoly from continuing the practice. Third parties have tried to get into the print cartridge business, but the makers abuse patent and copyright laws to thwart them. Lexmark went all the way to the Supreme Court in order to block these companies from reproducing cheap ink cartridges. Lexmark lost, but only on narrow grounds so the practice continues.

This is an example of something Steve Sailer has pointed out about Silicon Valley. This industry has thrived as much by thwarting the laws that apply to other industries as they have by pushing the barriers of technology. Whether it is patent laws or labor laws, these big tech firms have played by a different set of rules. In fact, they have often been given the right to make the rules.. Volkswagen is facing a criminal probe over gaming the emissions system, while Apple faces none for tampering with your phone.

The other thing that the printer scams, and now the phone scams, are signalling is the end of the technological revolution. Companies like Google and Apple stopped being technology companies a long time ago. Instead, they are oligopolists. In the case of Apple, they were never a technology company. They were a design and marketing firm that repackaged existing technology into cool consumer products appealing to cosmopolitan hipsters. They sell expensive display items for the trend setters and the fashionable.

As a reader at Sailer’s site observed, Google now resembles an adult daycare center where mentally disturbed women terrorize the few people doing real work. Google has not don’t much of anything, in terms of tech, once it gained a near monopoly of on-line advertising. The reason Susan Wojcicki can wage endless jihad at a money losing division like YouTube is it is owned by an oligopolist given a special right to skim from every internet user on earth. Google is now a tax farmer, not a tech company.

The end of the Industrial Revolution featured civil unrest and industrial scale violence across Europe. In the US, it resulted in great social reform movements that ranged from public morality to economics. By the middle of the 19th century, it was clear that the old feudal governing system was no longer able to maintain order in Europe and the colonial model was not working in America. A century of war and revolution resulted in social democracy, a Western governing system compatible with industrial societies.

What my printer is telling me is not just that the pink has expired, but the social arrangements that allow this scam have also expired. The Technological Revolution has made the old arrangements untenable. It’s why our ruling class struggles to do even the minimum. It may turn out that the managerial state is the perfection of industrial age governance, but entirely unsuited for the technological age. Whether or not we are on the verge of a century of social tumult is hard to know, but that’s the lesson of history.

This also suggests that the great biotech revolution is unlikely to happen. The Industrial Revolution happened outside of state control. Similarly, the Technological Revolution happened outside of the regulatory scheme. Biotech is pretty much a government funded and regulated enterprise at the moment. There are no entrepreneurs in their garage challenging the boundaries of genetics. All this work happens in government sponsored and regulated laboratories. History says revolutions from within never happen.

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98 Comments on "Lessons from the Printer"

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Tim Newman
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Apple should be hung up by the balls for what they’re doing to the old phones. My iPhone 6 is in mint condition because I look after a $600 asset, yet their fucking compulsory updates have made it run like treacle. It’s almost becoming unusable. You’re right, if any other manufacturer did this they’d be bankrupted by the lawsuits.

thud
Guest

Tim, I’m hoping my apple shares reach 200….I’ll buy you a new one!

Drake
Guest

I have an older Windows PC that barely moves now. No question in my mind that Microsoft purposely crippled the thing.

the_wog
Guest

Open the case and blow all of the dust out. Pay special attention to the fan/heatsink for the CPU ( it’ll be the large black/metallic squarish thing sticking up from the motherboard. All systems are equipped with thermostats for the cpu, ram, disk drives. As they accumulate insulation, i.e. dust, they retain more heat. The cpu will throttle itself to reduce heat, thus slowing your system down.

paul scott
Guest

Yes, similar in the laptop except untreatable.

Reziac
Guest

When did you last defrag and kill temp files?? Disk fragmentation can degrade performance by as much as 80%. Also, aside from a good cleaning, run diagnostics on the hard drive and network chip (either on the way out can cause stalls).

walt reed
Guest

You are spot on Reziac. I kept an average XP system going strong until (9 months ago) the hard drive had no more rpms left. Disk clean up every day minimizes fragmentation also. I picked up a used AlienWare with Windows 10. You have to stay on your toes with the downloads. It is like having your Mother in Law living with you. Bastards.

Member

I use a free utility software called Wise Care 365..
cleans up a whole heap of stuff and over three years I’ve detected no deleterious effect.

paul scott
Guest

I make every conceivable effort to prevent the spyware and control updates in Windows 10, but its not easy. You can go to the control panel to impose restore options, but once Windows finds out it blacks out all your defence restore dates and defence mechanisms.

bad guest
Guest

I bought one of the original Iphones when they first came out, but was too cheap to pay for a new one after the screen cracked. So I went back to my Samsung flip phone.

Now I have a $12 LG brick style that fits in my shirt pocket. It can even send texts when absolutely necessary, and if I lose it who cares?

The only real inconvenience might be that it doesn’t have GPS, but I prefer the older solar powered paper “maps” version anyway.

Shrugger
Guest

Pink is the new gun to the ribs.

paul scott
Guest

Magenta has a wider bore, and its a mixture of blue and red light, represented in ink as that beetroot pink colour Z writes of.

Cloudswrest
Guest

I read somewhere recently that Musk’s Teslas come with two battery capacities, the higher one costing more obviously. But here’s the rub. You get the same battery in either case. It’s just a software switch that you pay for that enables the higher capacity.

I’ve dreamed of some philanthropist coming out with a Gnu-car. A completely open source car, with all the ECU code public, etc. I’m sure that would drive the EPA nuts as everyone would be doing their own “VW” hacks for improved performance.

Member
I read somewhere recently that Musk’s Teslas come with two battery capacities, the higher one costing more obviously. But here’s the rub. You get the same battery in either case. It’s just a software switch that you pay for that enables the higher capacity. That’s an old chip industry scam. The “high performance” device and the “low-power” mobile device are the same exact same piece of silicon, they are just in a different package with some functionality disabled in hardware. Two connections are shorted together or left open. If the manufacturer is especially cheap and lazy, they will use the… Read more »
Member

Same as water heaters from Home Depot, don’t remember the exact numbers 3 or 7 years, same device different price.

calsdad
Guest
A GNU car already exists. I have been a “hot rodder” for probably 35 years now. Back in the days when CPUs and fuel injection started running engines instead of carburetors – there was much angst among the racing and hot rodding community about the glory days of do it yourself vehicle building and maintenance coming to an end. These days – it’s clear that the glory days are NOW and not then. There are copious options available out there to build your own vehicle – either by modifying an already existing vehicle or by building one from scratch. I… Read more »
Dutch
Guest

Excellent! Hot rodding has evolved, and it certainly is the transportation “freedom” statement that gun ownership represents in a different context. The powers-that-be hate hot riders.

Member

Can you elaborate on the bit about Google as a “tax farmer?”

uota
Guest
Vince (?); A generic definition of a tax farmer is a ruthless local shark who is a sub-contractor for a distant and indifferently competent elite. He is hired to collect taxes on their behalf. The tax farmer may take a spread on taxes collected as compensation for his efforts. But since nobody in the Capitol knows what the local collections actually are, usually the tax farmer takes all he can but has a fixed quota to pay the elite. Anything collected above that quota is his to keep. The concept of operations is that a local shark knows who has… Read more »
Greg Hiscott
Guest

at Engadget article: the head of the FBI says that smartphone encryption is a public safety issue. LOL ! The smartphones themselves are a public safety threat.

Rob
Guest

Find the cheapest ink cartridge first, then buy the printer. Most everyday computing can be done on a raspberry pi.
My son was forced to use apple computers in grade school and fostered a lifelong resentment for anything apple.

Al from da Nort
Guest
Z Man; Yet another outstanding post. Bravo_! Re biotech: I’d say it actually *is* an information technology just not a clean one involving electrons only. DNA is code and cells are the (really, really complex) hardware. Drugs share software economics after all (first copy $50 mil; second in-production copy $0.50 or less). But it most likely *has* to be strictly controlled so long as it involves self replicating, living cells and not just drugs. I believe that while the basic research needs be a costly endeavor*, the development engineering need not be. So far as I know, some glassware, a… Read more »
Herrman
Guest

Chances for a biotech revolution may be better than you think, though not the sort of revolution you’re meaning here. Just as phones have been turned into weapons, most technological advances are either developed for war or eventually used for war. The implications for biotech are beyond frightening.

Old surfer
Guest

Too late already. Our own government dusted SF with Serratia marcescens as an experiment in 1950. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Sea-Spray
I’m pretty sure most biologists could culture and deliver a nasty in their basement if they were so inclined.

DLS
Guest

Refilling the cartridges is the solution, but the printers are rigged to question refilled cartridges. Costco refills them for about $10, but sometimes the printer gets glitchy when you put them back in. I try to print everything in black, so the 3 color cartridges stay full. Zman is right, this is a totally unnecessary hassle. They could easily triple the size of the cartridges, and allow easy refills.

calsdad
Guest
Zman’s post should be refined a little better. What he’s talking about has been a “feature” of INK JET printers for as long as I can remember. And that’s going back 20 years or so for my home PC experience with consumer printers. It’s part of the reason why I gave up on inkjet printers a long time ago and went with laser. For a while I got away with printers scavenged from work – when the last of those finally died – I bought a Dell home office quality laser printer. The printer came with low page count toner… Read more »
Cloudswrest
Guest

The cartridges come with a counter, counting the number of times they are used. They don’t actually measure the amount of ink left inside. That’s how the printer “knows” it is getting empty. Refilling the cartridge doesn’t reset the counter. Some printers let you override an “empty” cartridge reading.

Tim
Guest

I’ve got an old HP laser jet that’s at least 17 or so years old. Black toner only and never fails. Problem is it connects to the computer via a cord, not by Bluetooth or any such nonsense. I’ve held off replacing my desktop apple, which I seldom use now anyway, because I don’t want to have to buy a new printer. Tim

Member
At the risk of being burned at the stake, I would like to point out that Apple slowed down older iPhones to PROLONG their useful lives by avoiding power-use spikes that previously caused iPhones to shut down unexpectedly as the battery aged. Annual updates to the system do slow down the phone, because they include features that are adapted to a faster processor (just as PC software has done since DOS). The updates are optional, but we can all agree that Apple is too aggressive about pushing them to people with older phones. Finally, much of the blame for old… Read more »
paul scott
Guest

No sorry, good try, but the burning will occur.

Member
It’s not a ‘good try’, it’s a fact. Apple handled this terribly. The user should have been notified and given an option to enable throttling or risk future phone shutdowns. Likewise, there should be a clear indicator as to battery state and throttling status, if enabled. But the power spike/phone shutdown issue with old batteries IS real. However, the other part of what Andrew said about features adapted to faster processors…that’s been nonsense for well over a decade in the industry. It was true in the 80s and 90s when software was rapidly evolving. Now software efficiency is simply falling… Read more »
Dutch
Guest
Not quite off-topic, but tangential, is a recent article by Roger McNamee in the Washington Monthly (who, you say? McNamee can’t get this stuff published in the tech world, because it is so incendiary). It is about Facebook specifically, and it might be one of the most important things you can read. The rambling article deals with how Facebook and Google invite constant agitation of the public, the sort of agitation that helped Trump get elected and Brexit happen, but also (unsaid in the article) how this agitation feature stirs up the Trump derangement going on today. McNamee misses that… Read more »
Ripple
Guest
McNamee has a pretty successful side gig as a musician, mostly but not exclusively here in the Bay Area. His main band is called Moonalice and his more occasional band is called Doobie Decibel System. Yes, he’s a big promoter of cannabis usage, a couple of his songs blatantly so. A hugely wealthy venture capitalist with a neo-hippie schtick and strong liberal advocacy. He’s fair as a singer-songwriter-guitarist but he’s hired some of the best, most experienced area musicians who I’m sure are grateful for a well-paying and regular gig. Initially there was a lot of resentment around here about… Read more »
Dutch
Guest
I think his work on this one is very important to be familiar with. The thing is, you must read between the lines to find the value. He covers the important elements with all sorts of unsupported mental jumps that try to frame the whole thing as a Trump conspiracy. He is also trying to “fix” Facebook with all sorts of outlandish wackadoo ideas. The fifteen second synopsis is that anger and agitation are easy to stir up, and the FB and GOOG algorithms seek to individually agitate people, 24/7. It can be used to manipulate, and it is obvious… Read more »
Ripple
Guest

Here’s a short video interview with the old hippie venture capitalist:

https://www.cbsnews.com/videos/early-investor-roger-mcnamee-urges-facebook-to-fix-the-product/

For a time he was sometimes calling himself Chubby Wombat at shows, as part of the Moonalice legend. I kid you not. Lately he’s introducing himself as plain old Roger.

Member
I think intelligent people caught onto the “planned obsolescence” tech thing a long time ago. There’s a television commercial (I forget the product), but there are a bunch of Gen X parents sitting in a support group sounding like their parents. One of the men says, “Why would I get rid of this? It works fine.” That’s the advertisers celebrating the merits of planned obsolescence. People are total suckers for that sort of thing. I have an iphone 6, and I might as well be using a rotary phone with a cord around most people on the 8 or X… Read more »
calsdad
Guest
I think a part of the problem that you’re referring to – is the utter lack of a lot of the general public to want to “do” anything. Maybe stuff is just too damn complicated these days. I admit that might be part of the problem. When things go wrong – you can’t just band-aid it back together like you could likely do with the general level of technology that existed say 50 years ago. When my truck started running like crap and dying on the highway – I finally discovered that mice had eaten thru the engine control wiring.… Read more »
Cloudswrest
Guest

Part of the problem is Moore’s law. Much equipment becomes useless long before it stops functioning or wears out because of newer superior products. This engenders less enthusiasm for building for permanence. And it’s not just the equipment, but also interfaces and protocols. Anybody have a serial port cable? How about a floppy drive? Does anybody use the analog RGB inputs on a new TV? Can you imagine handing down a calculator or computer from 20 years ago?

Member

Commodore Amigas sell for quite a bit.

Member

I sure wish I’d kept my 2000. It was a beast, back in the day, and it’s the last computer I’ve had that I enjoyed using.

Cloudswrest
Guest

Some products retain collector value, like Woody dolls in Toy Story 2. Hard to predict in advance. If Walmart came out today with a repackaged HP41 clone, who would buy it? I have a perfect, ucode copy of the HP41 running on my Windows system. http://www.hp41.org/Emulation.cfm

Occassional Commenter
Guest
Occassional Commenter

I still have my old Apple II somewhere in the attic. Upgraded the memory from 48K to a fearsome 64K! I also came across the original boot disks a while ago.

bad guest
Guest

I still use my 25 year old HP 42S from college and will until they quit making watch batteries that fit it – which may not be that far down the road. I only wish I had an old 41CV like my buddy.

Member

Moore’s Law has been dead since about 2011, at least when it comes to increasing desktop/laptop CPU performance.

Member

Still using my 30+ he old HP12c calcularor.

Member

I use kindle to read in the dark hours of the night. My current one is officially known to the Amazon God as “W’s 4th Kindle.” None of this was by my own violition.

jimvonyork
Guest

I still have one of the very first ones.

TomA
Guest

Yes to everything you just said. Now go one level deeper. This is happening for a reason. Prolonged affluence has altered the environment in which we now evolve, and the end result is that most people coming of age in this coddled environment are losing their robustness. They no longer have the hunger to overcome challenges or the imperiousness to fight through hardship. The dominant trait of this new breed is whining. That is what your printer was doing, whining for attention.

Member
Zman: Inkjet printers are of the devil. Samsung home B&W laser printers FTW. Usually in the $100 range. About 18″ cubed. Rock solid. Good drivers. Low page count toner cartridge it comes with is really a few thousand prints. High page count toner cartridges run about 50% to 75% a new printer. We usually get 5 years or so, with one or two new toner cartridges before we wear them out. I don’t do much printing, but wife & kids hit it hard. Samsung has a similar sized color laser in the $300 range. Been solid for 2 years.
Member

I have been using a Dell color laser for 1.5 years now. I bought it for my business while doing research for a replacement hack when it goes empty.
Didn’t think it would go this long being in the graphics business but most everyone looks at my proposals on a pdf by email.

Member
Concur. Most of my printing is done on an old Samsung ML-1710 laser that I got on sale for around $60, back in 2004 or 2005. I’ve probably gone through 5 or 6 toner cartridges, maybe more- I get them from Amazon for about $25 each. It’s a workhorse, and I’ve never had any problem with it. I also have a Canon inkjet, a cheap MG3122, that I use for color prints. Long ago I had an HP, but as many here have attested the HP is very fussy about accepting offbrand or refilled ink cartridges, so I got rid… Read more »
paul scott
Guest

I’m with inkjet for photographs, and even with experience, every photo can take about 3 or 4 prints to get it right, or ok. Once we go to the commercial printers the same thing, >.mm strange colours I didn’t expect.

Unclezip
Guest

Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black(K) are the base colors use in printing. Red, Blue,, and Green on a CRT monitor.

I retired from a Large printer manufacturer (X). They actually gave away $2000 printers because they had a solid lock on the ink replacement. Hell, the printer would actually call home to snitch about a replacement that was either refilled, or had come from the grey market. When you can charge $75 for a single stick of ink, you got it going on pretty well.

Reziac
Guest

Low-end inkjets have been cheaper to replace than recart for some time. Lexmark’s answer to this was to sell new printers with ink carts that were only 1/4th full. Others added date-chips so refilling with 3rd party ink became impractical. Canon eyed this market and offered up a printer that has a refillable tank, and went into the bottled-ink business.

My response was to hoard old HP LaserJets.

Member

I think Laserjets are the way to go, but after I went to pick up a replacement cartridge for my parents’ HP inkjet ($45 each!) I swore I’d never buy an HP product again. So far so good with aftermarket cartridges for the new, non-HP printer.

Member

Holy Planned Obsolescence Batman! How does this square with their “citizen of the earth” philosophy?

Drake
Guest
I refuse to buy Apple products even though I loved my Macintosh in 1986. The phone carriers and manufacturers are pissing me off. A few years ago I had a phone with a headphone jack, swapable battery and a micro-SD card. Now they are trying their best to phase out those features while forcing me into an expensive monthly lease. Well, it’s never going to happen. When my current phone dies (or becomes expensive to fix), I’ll be buying a $200 unlocked phone such as Motorola that still has a jack and SD card at least, and shopping for the… Read more »
Chazz
Guest

Canon and Epson both have tank style printers that do away with cartridges. Just pour ink in the tank. They are of course initially more expensive, but reviews say the ROI is about two years.

pyrrhus
Guest
I’m a business lawyer…In my experience, the abuse of patent and copyright laws (which themselves have become very abusive because of their extension to long periods of time) is absolutely rampant. On a personal level, one of my kids was a principal in a startup which was sued by a patent troll, in this case a wealthy trader who collected many worthless patents. The patent was absurd, and would have failed for any number of reasons including obviousness and the fact that Microsoft already had a master patent in the area. But small companies can’t afford patent lawsuits, which can… Read more »
Jim in Alaska
Guest

“Imagine buying a cheap compact car and finding out that a brake job or a new set of tires costs more than the car. That would never happen, of course, because public outrage would force the government to crack down on the car makers. ”

I’m not so sure about that, a google search; Repairs cost more than the car is worth!! got over 5 million results in 0.39 seconds.

Andre S
Guest

Sounds like an 8 year old German car.

Drake
Guest

Ha! Had a BMW that exploded into it’s composite pieces shortly after 100k. The dealership was surprised at my reaction – it was obviously time for a new one. I agreed and traded it in for a Mazda.

Rod1963
Guest
If a car is 2 years or 10 years old it shouldn’t cost more to repair than it’s worth. Even a engine replacement wouldn’t do it. Except maybe with those hyper expensive German cars where getting bent over is part of the overall experience. I have a 1997 Buick Riviera that I bought at a junk yard for $900.00 (salvage title) seven years ago. With repairs I probably have $2k into it. Still purrs like a kitten. Spreading the cost out over seven years, it comes out to about $300 a year. The only time costs should exceed the vehicle’s… Read more »
Jim
Guest
The cell phone business is an even bigger scam. Why don’t you buy your TV or laptop from the cable company? Because they’re commoditized. My cell phone plan was 6gb high speed data and unlimited anywhere in North America. Owned my own phone. For $10 more a month, for 2 years, they gave me: new LG6, 7gb, $300 of goodies, including $100 debit card usable anywhere. Tell me, what is the real price of the phone, and service? 2 sales people 3 hours to sell me. And we’re going to let these people vertically integrate? I have a better idea;… Read more »
Drake
Guest

I think that model is about to break. The phone used to cost next to nothing with a plan. Now you have a lease that any idiot can multiply into the actual cost on top of the plan.

Or, you can just go to Motorola or Amazon, buy an unlocked phone and shop for the plan.

Occassional Commenter
Guest
Occassional Commenter

Tracfone. Customer service is marginal at best, but it’s just fine if all you need is a phone.

Also, each year my wife simply buys a new Tracfone with a year’s worth of service from QVC. With QVC’s pricing bundle, it’s cheaper than buying another year’s worth of service from Tracfone. She simply transfers her phone number to the new one over the Tracfone website.

Ryan T
Guest

Error 42a revolution imminent

zreader
Guest

There are no entrepreneurs in their garage challenging the boundaries of genetics

The Odin is selling home CRISPR kits out of this guy’s garage, apparently.

Member

Yep. Search on line for “biohacking.” You’ll get a lot of stupid hits about exercise and diet, but the rest will leave you wishing you owned one of those doomsday bunkers… preferably one with a really good filter system.

Curious
Guest
Apple faces none for tampering with your phone That’s because they did nothing wrong. Apple updated iOS to slow older phones down when the weakened battery was at peak use and in danger of crashing the phone. It did not cause the phone to run more slowly all the time, only when it was in danger of crashing. Who wouldn’t want that change? More generally, it’s silly to say Apple isn’t a technology company. Are they doing basic science? Probably not but, for example, the iPhone revolutionized the industry and changed the products of every manufacturer making phones. It’s hard… Read more »
avatar of enlightenment
Guest
avatar of enlightenment

Precise and insightful. Thank you.

Member

Another issue worthy of note is the Lightbulb Cartel- GE, Phillips, Sylvania? or what ever it’s called.

They conspired in the ’70’s to reduce the life if incandescent light bulbs to 1,000 hours and have done the same with LED’s- from 20,000 hours to 5,000.

If Trump went after these fuckers very publicly it would do him no harm.

Don
Guest

The printer/print cartridge price gouge is no different from electric razors and replacement blades.

Burner Prime
Guest
Buying a new printer when your ink cartridges run out is..just…wow…stupid. Unless it is like 10 yrs old or the cartridges are rare or something. New printers come with only partially-filled cartridges. I know you’re old, but even my 85 yr old parents know that. I’m seeing a lot of stupid things being written across the whole right-o-sphere, manosphere, etc. Broken records all across the blogs, intellectuals preaching red-pill jiu jitsu. This coincides with my perception that maybe indeed Trump is the emperor with no clothes. Maybe his absurd and stupid tweets and other nonsense coming out of his mouth… Read more »
paul scott
Guest

gosh ,

Member
Off-topic. I have to share what I was just bludgeoned with. I’m very, very used to being slammed over the head with leftism and anti-Americanism in TV and movies, and often I just grit my teeth and look past it, otherwise I’d never get to watch anything at all. But tonight, I encountered something so egregiously, hatefully anti-American and anti-Christian that it actually threw me. I simply had to stop the show and eject the DVD. I’ll take it back tomorrow. I can’t in good conscience watch a show made by people who think like this. American Gods. Season 1.… Read more »
Garr
Guest
I wonder whether Neil Gaiman thought about how it might be possible to incorporate people like Elijah and Jesus into his myth-permeated versions of the real world. Maybe he thought about it and decided that it couldn’t be done. In the Sandman graphic novel series too there’s a Bible-sized hole. (Although now I remember that Cain and Abel are characters there, with Cain repeatedly murdering Abel. And Satan’s there as well.) Hmm … in Good Omens, co-written with Terry Pratchett, there’s a Apocalypse-of-John-type War in Heaven going on, as well as a switched-at-birth Antichrist, but I don’t recall a Jesus… Read more »
Member

“This also suggests that the great biotech revolution is unlikely to happen. The Industrial Revolution happened outside of state control. Similarly, the Technological Revolution happened outside of the regulatory scheme. Biotech is pretty much a government funded and regulated enterprise at the moment. There are no entrepreneurs in their garage challenging the boundaries of genetics. All this work happens in government sponsored and regulated laboratories. History says revolutions from within never happen.”
in the US perhaps, but who knows what goes on on

The Island of Doctor Moreau

Alzaebo
Guest

I remember the Law
I remember the House of Pain

Bill+Robbins
Guest
Zman: I enjoyed this post because it started with an every-day fact of life (printer cartridges; yes, a total scam) and created an engaging, philosophical discussion, including legal and economic aspects. Our lives are being consumed by balky, half-baked technology, produced by engineering drones and marketing nitwits who think the analog world no longer exists and nothing ever needs to be touched or repaired by human hands. All the switches, plugs (ports) and descriptive product information (model and serial numbers, etc) needed to set-up, modify, and repair computers, peripherals, and smart devices are either inaccessible, ergomically challenged, or require the… Read more »
DrTorch
Guest

Good piece.

Among the most egregious is industrial companies pretending that copyright laws means you can’t change the software running YOUR heavy equipment.

soapweed
Guest

None of my heavy equipment has software. Never yet had to have outside help, other than tires and injector pump rebuilds. Knock on wood……..