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Messages - ersi

1
City Skylines looks easier than Transport Tycoon.


2
DnD Central / Re: How To Sit
I've never been to Japan. :P
In Japan there are some awesome places to sit all night long, maybe even for a week or more.


3
Some guys have too much power (and money) even when jailed
Martin Shkreli must return $64.6 million in profits he and his former company reaped from jacking up the price and monopolizing the market for a lifesaving drug, a federal judge ruled Friday while also barring the provocative, imprisoned ex-CEO from the pharmaceutical industry for the rest of his life.

U.S. District Judge Denise Cote's ruling came several weeks after a seven-day bench trial in December that featured recordings of conversations that Cote said showed Shkreli continuing to exert control over the company, Vyera Pharmaceuticals LLC, from behind bars and discussing ways to thwart generic versions of its lucrative drug, Daraprim.
See Shkreli's full story in Dirty Money documentary series episode Drug Short.

You can also shouldersurf him for the way he does financial analysis in his YT course[1] https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLJsVF3gZDcuTxcdH5FmQRTd6MiJ29X_OQ
Honestly recommended. The guy is a skilled financier. I watched the whole thing and it helps me survive in my bank job.
4
Browsers & Technology / Re: E-readers
Now more than a month in, I can say this thing really serves a good purpose, particularly for reading long files/webpages.

For typing/editing, it's a bit trickier. The screen refresh rate may be too slow for fast typists. I have had to rethink the themes and colourschemes I use, in order to make selections visible (because the way I edit is based on selections first of all). And syntax highlight is pretty much worthless in black-and-white eink. Still, it's a very decent experience when typing prose, simpler markup, or IRC chat.
5
Ghislaine Maxwell is guilty of sex-trafficking, but only of sex-trafficking to Jeffrey Epstein. The prosecution seems to ignore the fact that Epstein was the trafficker to a long list of stars in the political, business, and art elite.

Alan Dershowitz, an earlier attorney for Epstein (and also on the long list), immediately got an interview with BBC after the verdict, and said in the interview, "[The prosecution] did not use as a witness the woman who accused Prince Andrew, who accused me, who accused many other people, because the government didn't believe she was telling the truth." Indeed, even though Prince Andrew was pretty much caught in the act, it is not sure if he or any other people on the long list will be tried in court.

However, just now Prince Andrew lost his titles, possibly in order to reduce him to an ordinary citizen just in case he ends up in the system.
6
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
Won't load for me.
Always be ready for American newssites not loading for Europe. Change your IP to any other continent and it works. This has been a huge problem ever since the EU cookie directive/GDPR nonsense, many years now.
7
There may be some rough estimation of the length of the movie based on the length of the script (even though more likely the producers determine the limits: up to this length and no more). What I know is that the actors have the script in hand (or there is a loudreader-person with the script in hand) when they practise, so the pages need to be
- legible and
- leave wide margins for possible notes and remarks.

Particularly (non-movie) theatre actors practise a lot and carefully until they master the entire script properly. In contrast, movie actors practise on a scene basis, the production process may include helluvalotta rewrites and the actors need to keep up with the changes.
8
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
This guy is more passionately and devastatingly anti-Musk.


9
Are screenplays required to look like they were composed on a typewriter?
Ever since printers became a thing (as in printing out of a word processor on a computer), you can have variable font, but otherwise yes, the conventions are as they are. If you type in MS Word or such, you'd have to do the drama-esque indentation and allcapping. In Fountain format you can omit the indentation, from what I read in the specification, but Fountain will apply the indentation upon export.

Edit: Nah, I was wrong. We are talking Hollywood, and apparently it has to be exactly as if on typewriter:
Here are the basics:

- 12-point Courier font
This makes sense too, as this font with wide line spacing is better readable from distance. But in theatres (as in non-movie) over here Times New Roman is commonplace, or whatever MS Word puts on out of the box these days.
10
This guy uses Emacs to write screenplays.



Fountain is a markup format for screenplays. When you learn all about it, you can try go Hollywood https://fountain.io/

11
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
There's also the interesting concept of night trains. I've never been on one, but to go to Vienna I can very much imagine it's much more comfortable to board a train at night, sleep while you're barreling towards your destination and to wake up near Austria.
It's not an outlandish concept. There are also overnight ships and airplanes. And you can have an odd nap on the train or tram at any point, even during the day.
12
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
I'll grant that a train traveling at 300 km/h isn't quite as comfortable as one traveling at 130-200 km/h,...
I wish I could experience that speed some day. (Well, I have in airplanes.) The thing is, Musk's main promise has always been speed - speed that obviously cannot be had, yet somehow important enough people fall for it so that they made him (almost) the richest man in the world despite his lack of merit.

Promise:
The Vegas Loop - Quick Facts

 - Includes the Las Vegas Convention Center Loop (LVCC Loop)
 - Total Current Cost: $52-million
 - Travel Speed: 155 mph

...but I wonder if the thrill ride even went as fast as 50.

Wikipedia says, "The tunnel was unveiled in mid-April 2021 with regular Tesla Model 3 and Model X cars used for shuttling, running at about 35 miles per hour (56 km/h)" i.e. surface street level top speed - and that must be the top speed, because in the video the traffic looks congested to begin with and is 30 km/h tops (yes, I mean km/h). Also the promised capacity is orders of magnitude "not there yet".

Even though in my opinion it only adds to the shamefulness of the whole experiment, Musk's client references a money-back guarantee: "If the system doesn't work, we will get all of our money back." In my opinion, these are the kind of projects where money back is not enough, because it cannot cover the cost of demolishing the failure.
13
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
Elon Musk said, "Think of them as wormholes. You go in and woops out in the other end." Totally a thrill ride. Lovely how the reporteress puts her hand into his lap for sense of safety, at the speed of Boring.
14
An Estonian dude tried to learn Japanese. Not too bad, I'd say. Literacy in Japanese and Chinese are lifetime projects even for the natives.


15
Yes, there are times when it is very hard to avoid salesman jobs. I have thus far managed to avoid salesman jobs, direct customer contact, and creating my own company. I'm still afraid that once I create my own company, no matter how minimal, I will have to become a salesman and a duper/brainwasher of customers.
16
Oakdale, the problem is far beyond the interpretation of the word "sex". Luckily for Title VII, it specifies "in the workplace", so everything outside the workplace should be a non-issue.

In the workplace, as far as my experience goes (admittedly limited experience, as I have been a white-collar office employee all this century), sexual orientation does not even come up, so this kind of anti-discrimination law is futile. It's rather the other way - as soon as sexual orientation does come up, as in some colleagues display their orientation so that it affects the work environment, somebody is sure to get fired, i.e. absolutely discriminated against. Simply, there's no room for any sexual orientation whatsoever in the workplace.

For the sake of workplace, the law should better postulate something relevant to workplace, such as equal pay for the same tasks/position/title. But for some idiotic reason this point, even though at the forefront in real-life work environment, is left to "free market".

The law is messed up on this point, not on the word level, but on the section level or even on the principle level. Those whose job is to apply/interpret the law as written are f'd, fairly literally. Some judges try their best to not be ridiculous. The majority try their usual veiling of ulterior motives. None of them will admit the law is letting them down.
17
At this stage, the problem is not how to interpret the word "sex" but that lawgivers yielded to feminist pressures in a manner that gave rise to a slippery slope of problems that keep growing like a snowball.
And yet the very definition of feminism is "Shouldn't the law be against any and all disadvantaging, not solely on the basis of a limited list like race, sex etc?" Anything else is straw feminism.
I happen to agree. The lawmakers who thought they can address the
grievances of women and ethnic minorities by means of a list like this, were engaged in straw feminism. Also, the "sexual minorities" who have led to the extension of the list are just perpetuating the same straw mindset.

The list is bad form for rights that everyone should have. The list would be a better form for necessary distinctions to be made, but the point of this law is "don't discriminate", instead of "do differentiate". Normally such laws employ an exception list instead, e.g "everybody is equal, except high state officials have privilege, legal might has superiority and bigger capital has priority." I.e.a negative list, not a positive list.
18
I find discrimination laws highly contentious and pretentious. What is discrimination? Is it "to disadvantage" someone? Or is it merely "to differentiate"? The latter we do all the time without any problem, e.g. passports state (and personal id numbers imply) whether you are male or female, so that's differentiation. Does the law prevent this? No, never did. And it's not clear it would serve any sensible purpose to abolish this differentiation.

But "to disadvantage"? Shouldn't the law be against any and all disadvantaging, not solely on the basis of a limited list like race, sex etc? There's one clear disadvantaging in workplace that no law has ever addressed (and never will): Paying different salary for the same work/position/title (or worse, objectively easier tasks get better paid). Employees "can" (as if they had a choice or say in the matter) negotiate individual salaries. As a consequence, different individuals end up with different salaries, and women may average to a different salary than men. The salary you get is a vital thing - if you don't get it, you may die of hunger and cold - but law turns a blind eye, as if this were not deadly discrimination. Also, in work interviews you usually need to show your face, so the prospective employer necessarily screens you for race, sex, fashion, height, weight, voice, etc. The laws do nothing to address this.

When the limited list was introduced due to feminist pressures - "discrimination in the workplace on the basis of race, [skin] color, religion, sex, or national origin" - "sex" certainly meant merely whether the individual is male or female. It did not mean sexual orientation or, worse, self-perceived identity. Yet in this day and age it does, because we are beyond feminist pressures now - we have LGBT(+etc) pressures, and this permits, nay, demands "sex" be interpreted as whatever - and it's as literal from current perspective as mere male/female distinction was from the 60's perspective.

More fuel to the fire, European countries have started to put "sexual orientation" explicitly on the list. The funny thing is of course that pedophilia and what not are also sexual orientations (how would you argue that they are not?), so does it really serve a sensible purpose to explicitly normalise any and all sexual orientations? Insofar as workplace is concerned, how would sexual orientation even come up? Should everybody be able to advertise their sexual orientations, regardless of the work they are in? Shouldn't only professional qualifications matter in workplace? (The only workplace where sexual orientation would matter is probably porn industry, so regulate that, lawgivers.)

As to "interpreting" that Oakdale has an issue with, it so happens that whenever you read a text, you are interpreting it. Inevitably. It is impossible to not interpret. Learn from the failures of strict Bible literalists. The pitfalls are in fact more applicable to law texts, because law is human, not divine, so law is as flawed as humans in general. Law is not an exact science nor a philosophy. It is a social construct and experiment, a work in progress like AI translation. At this stage, the problem is not how to interpret the word "sex" but that lawgivers yielded to feminist pressures in a manner that gave rise to a slippery slope of problems that keep growing like a snowball.
19
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
I should not have said "I tend to trust this guy". I meant that I like his videos as he goes through the same points in every video, so his reviews are consistent and I know what to expect in terms of the level of information. I actually disagree quite strongly about class division in trains (and in airplanes). But there's apparently nothing to do about it. (Regarding Brightline, it's also suspicious to give first-class passengers free wine before boarding. Then again, I would surely take a cup of it myself if riding first class there.)

In Estonia, we even have noticeable price differences depending whether you pay for the same thing in cash, with a payment card, with the train operator's customer card, or with an online bank transfer. There used to be a law against such differentiation, but I don't know what happened to it. Maybe some day I'll get angry enough to look it up.
20
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
America finally has a good railway: Brightline in Miami (I tend to trust this guy)
(I have explored almost the entire length Tri-Rail in Miami area and found it recommendable.)



Meanwhile, LA-SF high-speed rail line is getting nowhere (also the likely fate of Rail Baltic)



Will Brightline's CA-NV project work out as nicely as their FL project has?


21
Once upon a time a guy on IRC started sharing his selfies. It turned out he was a hamster. You never know about people on the internet.


22
There, in Title VII,
Congress outlawed discrimination in the workplace on the
basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.
Today,
we must decide [ON THE BASIS OF TITLE VII AS MENTIONED IN THE PREVIOUS SENTENCE, WHICH YOU, DEAR READERS, KNOW BECAUSE YOU ARE NOT GOLDFISH] whether an employer can fire someone...
Are you implying that Oakdale is goldfish? On my part, I have considered that it's his cat typing, not himself. It would explain some things.
23
Same as guns, there is no upside to cars.


24
Another thing is that work relationships have been changing. It seems that everybody needs to have an own company. As long as you are a successful salary man, the company can be dormant, just for occasional withdrawal of returns on passive long-term investments in case of need. The company needs to be ready to find a business area as soon as the salary job fails.

Work relationships are being turned upside down. It probably happened early on with cab drivers. A cab driver used to be an employee, a shift worker getting paid some dollars per hour. The car and the clothes used to be from the taxi company. But these days cab drivers have to have a registered company of their own, their company rents a car from the provider, and gains access to the platform (taxi app) where the customer base is.

This way, on the one hand, the driver can set his own working hours. On the other hand, the rent of the car and fees for the access to the platform guarantee that the driver will never earn much. Everything is online/remote, so there is little opportunity to impress some bosses to advance in your career. The arc of the job is to keep doing it until you get fed up and hopefully find something else to do.

"Being your own boss" means you have no employee benefits and you cover all the equipment costs that would normally be the responsibility of the employer. With this kind of "modern" work arrangement, it's actually the platform provider who can claim to be your employee or client or customer or partner, and get the employee benefits or customer protection accordingly.

As time moves on, it gets harder to be an employee. More and more people have to become either businessmen or investors or pretend to be such, whose main way to earn is the middleman's cut.
25
Shortage of workforce is a lie. Workforce is always there in the numbers of the unemployed, but goes unutilised, so there is really no shortage.

What employers are short of is cheap workforce, i.e. slave labour. And, recruiting is a hassle, nobody wants to deal with it, so there are whole industries replacing the traditional recruiting process, the traditional recruiting process being a job announcement written by the business who wants to fill the vacancy. Instead, the job announcements are outsourced, written by external recruitment specialists, and the content of the announcements shows it - a lot is lost in translation, i.e. there are communication problems between the employing business and the outsourced recruitment agency.

My advice: Just ignore the contents of the job announcement. If you want the job, do some research, find out the real employing business (i.e. try to bypass the recruitment agency who may have published the job announcement on behalf of the business), and if the business looks like something where you'd like to work,
- contact them directly to agree an interview (requires good communication skills on your own part - and don't get frustrated if you get referred back to the recruitment agency),
- try to apply for jobs that you are UNDERqualified for and UNqualified for (if you have career ambitions, then this is the way to go to acquire experience of not just having a job, but progressing in career - don't make yourself cheap).

Maybe at some point I will give an overview of my own entire career (which is magnificent for the time being).

Have a happy turn of the calendar!