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@EricBennett2 @EricBlairEtc While I agree with the main drive of your point, I would like to note that the gold standard could, and was, politically manipulable. Gold is a commodity and the supply, and hence the price, can be controlled to a degree just as is currently done with oil.

5 days, 18 hours ago on Tor is not a “Fundamental Law of the Universe”

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@Umfuld @LucidLunatic You make a strong point. There are counter arguments, but there is a serious discussion to be had there. I got none of that from the above article.

6 days, 9 hours ago on Tor is not a “Fundamental Law of the Universe”

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I feel like you have entirely missed the point of Quinn Norton's article. Have Tor developers responded innapproriately to the recent coverage? Yes. However, the point Quinn made is that what Tor sees itself as doing is one specific piece of providing security- a layered encryption process. That specific process, Quinn and Tor maintain is secure. However, endpoints and interfaces are vulnerable to exploitation, by the government as well as other parties. No one reasonable has denied that, nor the fact that it is funded by the government. Quinn further argues that given the specific job that Tor does, mathematical encryption, if the government were building backdoors into it, they'd be making their own systems just as vulnerable as any they exploited.

You can absolutely make arguments as for why we should be suspicious of that funding anyhow. For instance, the fact that the government has the resources to take advantage of the Tor ecosystem, namely by setting up honeytrap nodes. Given the resources of the government, only it and similarly sized state players are as well equipped to do such a thing (arguably, though I would disagree). Other ecosystem level arguments can also be made.

However, I have not seen you, or others, make those arguments. I have seen a lot of vitriol, which you are just as guilty of in this article as those you oppose, though you are somewhat more polite and restrained than the extremists on the Tor side. I would be happy to see a well thought out argument for ways Quinn overlooks the potential for government influence over the project.

6 days, 16 hours ago on Tor is not a “Fundamental Law of the Universe”

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What I don't understand, Paul, is why you and many others believe that Nicole's comments were coordinated by Uber. Does she have an interest in defending Emil? Yes, they're friends, she says as much. But as you highlight, her post was counterproductive to Uber's messaging. As far as I can tell, since making those unforgivable comments, Uber has done the right thing. Admitted what was said, apologized, and tried to move on- including removing messaging in questionable taste from its own blog.


I'll also note, Nicole's comment does not seem to disagree with Emil's admission much at all. He admits to the action plan of opposition research/smearing- a threat of sorts, and venting. However, Nicole's focus appears to be on defending her friend from accusations of threatening Sarah's children/family. If Emil has admitted to that, I have missed it. If there has been a direct accusation that he made such threats, I have missed it. I do know that Sarah felt sufficiently threatened to hire security. Why is not clear to me, but I trust she has information not available to me, and even if not, it is her prerogative to do as she sees fit. I respect that. Even so, Emil apologized particularly for causing distress- presumably for that reason.


So while nothing about this debacle has made me like Uber, I do not find this particular attack on them to be justified.

3 weeks, 5 days ago on Uber’s smear machine thinks you’re a total idiot

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@Todd Dunning While I do like the article, it is summary of an article in Fortune. So I have trouble with the statement that you'll never see this anywhere else.

4 months, 1 week ago on Fortune confirms that Secret’s anti-bullying system doesn’t work

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Editorializing, I feel that this article would be better off as a paragraph in the PandoTicker, as the primary content is summary of the Wired article, with quick references to analysis already covered thoroughly in other Pando articles. You guys get to choose your editorial direction, but that would be my personal preference- I like to hold you guys to a higher standard than TC, etc.

4 months, 1 week ago on What happens when a user fights back and experiments on Facebook

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Well, if you ignore secondary effects such as the health of the company (which, I will note, no one actually making this decision should do), he has a point. In principle, going public earlier will allow a larger number of people to profit from a company's growth. If you assume that the company will follow the same trajectory regardless, then there is no downside. Not necessarily a valid assumption, obviously, but Dan appears to be making it. You are absolutely right to point out, though, that no matter what happens, it will be the institutional investors that reap the bulk of the profits.

4 months, 3 weeks ago on Sorry, Dan Primack: Going public doesn’t help the country. Building great companies does

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Firstly, Paul, thank you for sharing your statement from Byliner. It is good to get an idea of how other authors have fared with the company. This has certainly changed my stance since reading Horwitz's op-ed. However, I think you may have misunderstood his statements regarding the best selling status of the book. When he said he was a best seller, he specified a very specific sub-listing on Amazon where he his book was on top. This does not indicate, as you suggest, that he thought he was one of Byliner's best sellers. 

5 months, 4 weeks ago on An author claims Byliner ebooks screw authors. Here’s my royalty statement to prove they don’t

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Don't call them 'flying death robots.' Call them 'flying killer robots.' Better acronym.

6 months, 2 weeks ago on Pryte rips the facade of altruism from Facebook’s Internet-providing drone army

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Frankly, for the grand experiment that it was, NSFWCorp lasted an impressively long time. No ads, low subscriber fees that a college student could (and did, for a long time) afford, and it did not court or target mainstream readers. On top of that, rather than producing inoffensive  click-bait, Paul aimed to offend 10% of his audience, or thereabouts, with every article NSFWCorp published, which I thought was an admirable goal 90% of the time. Yet it not only survived for 15 months, but also managed a graceful exit into Pando. Not half bad.

6 months, 3 weeks ago on From Najran to Bangkok to Las Vegas: My Time with NSFWCORP

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That is fantastic, and an interesting study in how companies seek to influence their social media perceptions. I suspect that, in addition to being vocal about services, a certain number of followers in (probable) target markets is a pre-requisite.  I imagine celebrities (such as heads of state or VS models [who I weren't aware were celebrities]) will likely automatically be placed on the list, whereas others, such as yourself get added after making well publicized comments.


Thank you for sharing.

7 months ago on Confirmed: Hotel Tonight keeps a secret list of whiny assholes, and I’m on it

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@mcarney  Ah, that makes sense. Thank you. Consider rephrasing the numbers above so they make arithmetic sense?

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Mobile showdown: Revealing the drugs of choice and other insights into the interests of iOS and Android users

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Question on the math- what does "0.85 times more than average" mean? Let's assume that interest across everyone is normalized to 1. So 1 indicates normal interest. Then if I multiply by 0.85 I get 0.85, which is less than 1. Lower than average interest, by definition. I see from the infographic that this is the data being given to you by Gravity, but it doesn't make any sense. Am I missing some crucial context?

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Mobile showdown: Revealing the drugs of choice and other insights into the interests of iOS and Android users

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Personally, I don't object to the addition of the fee. While I am dismayed that they were not already providing a safety oriented service, it seems entirely reasonable that if they are adding an additional service which costs them money, that they would in turn charge the customers more to maintain their own margins. The amount of funding they have is irrelevant when it comes to setting up a sustainable business model.

8 months ago on uberXtortion: new Uber policy forces riders to pay $1 safety fee

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@paulcarr @Songhua Hu  I suspect he isn't doing an author by author comparison. One speculative reason this might also be the case would be if these sponsored pieces are planned further in advance than some other content. Many of Adam's articles show similar signs of long planning. Others, such as today's articles on Buffet and FiveThirtyEight, were likely conceived of and written in a shorter period. This does not inherently make either of them bad pieces (I liked Mott's piece), but does lead to them being less meaty.


Also, a typo above. Should say 425 million active users, not 425. That wouldn't be a very valuable product. ;)

9 months ago on Dancing Giants: Can big companies still innovate?

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Wishing the law were different is no reason for someone to not obey and use the law as it stands to their full benefit.

9 months ago on Warren Buffett says he wants to pay more tax (then structures a deal to ensure he does the exact opposite)

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Important to note that it is derived from the MSRP, only adding the expenses Tesla incurs getting it to China. http://www.teslamotors.com/blog/fair-price

10 months, 4 weeks ago on Tesla sets Model S price in China at around $121,000

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I'm going to wait to see it in the wild before judging this one. I think the Google Now integration might be the killer feature, but that all depends upon implementation.


It was interesting reading this back to back with the Wired article. Two very different opinions on the importance of the product. Time will tell.

1 year, 4 months ago on Google spent $12.5B on Motorola for a pink phone

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Huge respect for Olivia's behavior throughout. And still a student? Incredible.

Now, out of curiosity- are you still at +5000% traffic? Are you seeing any corresponding increase in subscriptions, etc? If this is what pushes NSFWCorp into profitability... well, you can laugh all the way to the bank, and there would be no better comeuppance for trying to shame a journalist.

1 year, 4 months ago on Weiner’s campaign called one of my writers a “slutbag.” How was your day?

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Question- how are we defining the top ten engineering schools, here? Mostly curious, because by reputation I'm surprised by a few of the selections.

1 year, 5 months ago on Inside LA’s ongoing talent conundrum

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If this backfires, I will make sure to say I told you so.

This did remind me of a conversation I had recently where a friend told me, "I'm pretty sure a company isn't supposed to be a machine that takes in people and spits out money, at least not proportionally. You're like Katamari, or something."

1 year, 6 months ago on WITN: “Can I go on record as saying this is a horrible idea?”

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You may be over generalizing here. As an entrepreneur (that's how I pay my tuition) and current student at Harvey Mudd College, I believe that the reason my school tops the list is the emphasis that it puts on the non-technical parts of the education. You can read the mission statement yourself, but the school was founded upon the principle that graduates should not only have technical ability, but also the knowledge to think about how it should be applied in a global and societal context. In many ways, exactly what you have done and described as the ideal.

In short, I do not know whether or not these engineers get paid more than your average MBA. I suspect that MBA's likely have a larger standard deviation in pay, but that is neither here nor there. I do however believe strongly that there is a reason those particular schools show up in the top five, and at least in the case of Mudd, it is for some of the very reasons you list as being benefits of a non-technical education.

1 year, 7 months ago on Do software engineers earn more than MBAs?

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You ought to harass Musk about the Hyperloop. I believe he said that he would be posting more details on the concept some time ago...

1 year, 11 months ago on Elon Musk’s SolarCity debut follows his pattern: Hard fought, but ended the day up dramatically

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@igobyterry Unusual number of spelling/grammar errors as well. Clearly typos, but still. Interesting variation on the hackathon, though. I'd be interested to see that 'textbook.'

2 years ago on Textbook startup Boundless continues blowing up an industry everyone wants out of

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I'm going to contest the notion that "no author gets truly great editing out of publishing houses anymore," based on second hand information. I follow a number of authors, mostly in the SFF genre, fairly closely. A significant portion of them seem to have very good relationships with their editors and publishers. Often times, the authors believe their assistance to be invaluable. I cannot make any broad claims that this is true everywhere, but at the very least there are a number of exceptions to the rule.

None the less, quite enjoyed the piece.

2 years ago on All six mega-publishers can merge, and they still won’t win Amazon’s game

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The other comments on this article scare me. Either the game is really good, or they were incentivized to post in support of it. Of the two options, I'm not sure which concept is stranger. Of course it's possible that this was all done very well, but it's so much easier to be suspicious. Ah, cynicism.

2 years, 4 months ago on Imovation and 5-hour Energy Partner to Make the Advertception a Reality

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Thanks for the follow up, Hamish.

2 years, 4 months ago on So, About Those Free Washing Machines…

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Collusion? In China? I have no trouble believing that, though it would be interesting to see if it could be proven. Most interesting is the fact that none of those companies overtly said they would try to undercut Amazon's prices.

2 years, 4 months ago on So, About Those Free Washing Machines…

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I'll need to keep this service in mind, though. I don't quite understand where those additional viewers are coming from, but it would be interesting to see how many of those are fully engaged/desirable viewers. It is all to easy to see the ways this could be done wrong- automated views, the video you need to watch before getting 'free' wifi (@paulcarr), etc.

2 years, 4 months ago on Virool Brings Viral Video Views to the Cash Carrying Masses

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Quick typo catch- paragraph 3 (or 4, if we're being strict), the last sentence is repeated.

2 years, 4 months ago on Virool Brings Viral Video Views to the Cash Carrying Masses

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Why am I not in China right now? @hamishmckenzie, can you get some reports on how this is falling out on the ground? Because it seems to me that anyone who cares to should be getting free appliances. But that isn't possible for any period of time. Someone needs to back down, and soon. 

2 years, 4 months ago on It’s War: China’s Ecommerce Giants Draw Swords on Weibo

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I like their pricing structure a whole lot better than Amazon's, but they don't offer Windows servers, when the main thing I'd like to use it for at the moment is hosting client Sharepoint instances. The day they begin offering Windows Server for under $300/month per server, I'll move my company over in a heartbeat.

2 years, 4 months ago on Amazon May Own the Skyscrapers of Cloud Hosting, But DigitalOcean Is Looking to Own Main Street

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Could we have a list of all applicable mediocre superpowers? Are we including the mediocre superpowers from PandoLists?

2 years, 4 months ago on Making Your Mediocre Super Powers Reality… One Detached Arm at a Time

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That is sad. I do think the low views were due to presentation, to a great extent. I have no idea how to do it better, but despite the fact that the info was interesting, I rarely watched/listened to the videos. At best I would glance through all of the text.

 

As an aside, unlike spezio, I really like that you let us get an inside glimpse of Pando's workings on occasion. It makes me feel almost like part of the team.

2 years, 4 months ago on A Sad Goodbye to the PandoList and Amanda Schwab

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One objection- unless I'm misunderstanding the video, it is stating that low atmospheric pressure and low temperature are both contributing factors to the fact that the water on Mars remains frozen. However, if I remember my chemistry, low pressure should decrease the freezing point of water. In fact, for low atmospheric pressure, water would be most likely to exist in a gaseous state.

 

Hmm... I suppose that at those temperatures/pressures it would actually sublimate rather than melt as pressure decreased. So the video remains factually accurate, but may be misleading in the details. Can't imagine how they would fit an entire chemistry lecture in there though. A phase-state diagram would have been nice, though. Then again, I'm probably just too nerdy.

 

Still, I enjoyed the video, and am glad that Pando has created this partnership.

2 years, 4 months ago on Pandohouse Rock Vol 2: What Will the $2.5B Mars Rover Actually Do?

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I think I need to start listening to the NSFWCorp podcasts just to listen to Paul being hilarious, if he's half as funny on those as he is here.

2 years, 4 months ago on Why Isn’t This News? Nobody Expects The “Persian Jews”! Edition

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Scoble's prediction is eerily similar to what I heard Tim Berners-Lee discuss during a meeting of his working group when I visited MIT, which was the 'semantic web.'

2 years, 4 months ago on Internet 3: Rise of The Machines

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Is the sound really soft on this for anyone else? I have everything on max, but am having some trouble hearing.

2 years, 5 months ago on PandoMonthly San Francisco with Mark Pincus: Post-Event Recap

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A quote from our friendly neighborhood Trevor Gilbert, or is there a source for this?

2 years, 5 months ago on The Truth Behind Talent Acquistions | PandoDaily

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Great question, and one I don't have an answer to. I do, however, rather like the idea of an Entrepreneur's high school. Mostly, though, I would like to see the entire education system revamped to give kids many of the qualities an entrepreneur needs. Don't get me wrong, we still need people to work for established companies (well, some of them, anyhow). But imagine if everyone was willing and capable of being an entrepreneur. For one thing, the unemployment numbers wouldn't be nearly so high.

2 years, 5 months ago on How Do You Identify a Jedi Knight?

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Firstly, great article. Secondly, I feel as though Apple is at the point where it is capable of ignoring most paradigms. Without having read it (dangerous, I know) I suspect that the "Consolidation Curve" hypothesized in the original article does not account for single entities with the sheer market/mind share of Apple, not to mention it's bank account. The world has never seen a consumer company like it, so they're perfectly capable of, not only working outside the box, but building themselves a better box and not letting anyone else inside.

2 years, 5 months ago on The Mobile Industry Is Ignoring the Rules of Consolidation

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 @paulcarr You just took care of it- thank you very much!

2 years, 5 months ago on WITN: Not Safe For Work Corporation Launches! At Last!

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Odd, I'd signed up for the beta and never got a login. Were those already sent out, or have I not missed anything? May just need to wait for the reviews from the public :)

2 years, 5 months ago on WITN: Not Safe For Work Corporation Launches! At Last!

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I think you may misunderstand what the word 'monthly' means. No complaints here, though!

2 years, 5 months ago on What Summer Slow-down? PandoMonthly’s Insane 3 City, 3 Mogul July Line-up

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I think Google should be capitalizing on this- Google Hangouts have everything anyone could want from video chat, though I don't believe it is up to par for mobile- but that will come soon, I have little doubt. Given that, I'm bearish on the startups tackling this. Maybe if someone were to target enterprise, but I think the consumer segment is more or less sewn up.

 

But I've been wrong before.

2 years, 5 months ago on Video Chat Is Anyone’s to Win, and Investors Are Acting Accordingly

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It's always interesting to see Google leverage their ubiquity. Almost everyone uses a Google product. The more tightly they integrate them, while keeping each product independently useful, the stronger incentive there is to buy into the ecosystem as a whole. Rather than having a traditional loss-leader or gateway drug, every piece will be the gateway drug, depending on what you need to use.

 

The incredible thing is that this ties in very well with both Google+ and Google Glass, which are acting more as unifying platforms than individual products. Brin and the other long term planners at Google must have had these plans in the works for years, and we're only just now seeing the fringes.

2 years, 5 months ago on Between the Lines at Google I/O: We’re Plugging the Holes in the Ecosystem

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You should absolutely try to get Elon Musk at one of these. The ideal theme would be successful entrepreneurs re-investing their gains into insanely ambitious projects- Elon Musk and Tony Hsieh are the two obvious choices for that, and I hope there are others- you would know better than I.

2 years, 6 months ago on CEO Supper Club: The Point of the Evening When We All Lose Our Minds

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I certainly hope to see more of those costumes in the future. And Paul does look strangely good in the wig... both wigs, actually. The costumes should be used for all interviews that have a chance of making someone angry.

2 years, 6 months ago on [WITN?] Don’t Let Her Eat Cake: Sarah’s Disclosure Gets Her Banned From David Sacks’ Epic Birthday Party

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Michael- how do they make money? It's free for customers and the language on the website makes it seem like it is free for restauranteurs as well, though that can't possibly be the case. Is there some sort of subscription fee?

2 years, 6 months ago on New Eat24 iOS App Puts Online Food Ordering and Delivery In Your Pants

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