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My kids have child phones on Google Fi which allows me to shut down their Internet with a couple of button presses. Are they simple devices if I geofence their internet access off while they're in school? I somehow doubt it, but it does meet the definition as you've stated it, which in turn means it is as @originalucifer said, not exactly cut and dry.

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So this is neat. Potentially life changing for some type 2 diabetics, but that depends because some t2 diabetics are not failing to make enough insulin, they're just no longer sensitive to it at a level that makes it functional for them. I suppose it's possible that this therapy could cause them to grow enough islet β cells to overcome their lack of sensitivity, but (and I'm a type 1, not a type 2, so maybe my info is incorrect here) that lack of sensitivity can grow with further exposure to insulin making this a stop-gap at best for those cases absent other therapies.

...and with all of that said, being able to regrow islet β cells has never really been the problem for type 1 diabetes. You can regrow all the islet β cells you'd like and it's not going to cure the underlying immune disease that has caused your immune system to kill off all of your islet β cells to begin with. Unless you can figure out why t1 diabetes causes one's own immune system to go psycho killer on their islet β cells, you've done nothing to "cure" diabetes. Without being able to suppress that impulse for your immune system to murder your own cells, any ability to replace the islet β cells is going to be temporary at best, and probably a waste on the whole.

My brother in law is a "cured" type 1 diabetic, by virtue of his having had a kidney replacement and being on immune suppressing drugs for that. Since they were already replacing the kidney and he was going to have to take immune system suppression medications for that, they also just replaced his pancreas at the same time and the suppression of his immune system has allowed the new pancreas to thrive and continue to make insulin. Easy-peasy. The only trade-off is that he is super immunocompromised and can be killed by common colds, so not a great strategy in general.

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If you'd like to look into it further. the +i flag in chattr is setting an attribute making the file (everything in Linux is a file, so yes this even means directories) immutable. When a file is immutable, it isn't possible to change the ownership, group, name, or permissions of the file, nor will you be able to write, append, or truncate the file.

It's been a while since I've used it, but I don't believe it's possible to have an immutable directory where you can still modify the contents therein, but I may be misremembering that. It would seem unlikely since adding content to the directory should require that you modify the links for the directory, which shouldn't be allowable with an immutable object?

It's possible that the +a chattr attribute may achieve what you'd prefer. I believe that flag will make it so that files (and again, everything in Linux is a file) can be created and modified, but never deleted. I've actually never used this one, but I can foresee how this still may not be ideal for your wishes since updates to games may expect to be able to delete old content which would be thwarted here. 🤷

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Attributes only apply to the directory’s own allocation table and child directories have their own tables.

Thanks. It has been a while, but I was fairly certain that this was the case, glad to have the confirmation. 👍

A major pause in relations between Russia and China, economist says (russiapost.info)

By Vladislav Leonidovich InozemtsevThe author is Director of the Moscow-based Centre for Research on Post-Industrial Societies, a nonprofit think-tank, and a professor and the chair at the Department of World Economy, Faculty of Public Governance, Moscow State Lomonosov University.–...

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I accidentally misclicked this article and reported it as spam while I was trying to report some prescription drug spam. Hopefully it's not adversely affected. I wish there was an Undo on that action.

Are there any EV cars without any "technology"?

Like the title says, are there any EVs that just have a Bluetooth radio and that’s it? Like a normal car, not a smartphone on wheels? If not, do you all think that this will actually happen at some point? This is the main reason why I can’t (and will never) buy an EV. I like to have actual buttons everywhere on my car. I...

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The Nissan Connect stuff doesn't work anymore for any of the 2016 Leafs, they used a form of cell service that is no longer in operation.

I swapped a nice Kenwood head unit into my Leaf for a couple hundred dollars. It maintains the backup camera, steering wheel controls, and the built in USB port while offering a larger screen and touch screen controls for Android Auto or Apple Car Play if you want them. It's awesome and I highly recommend it for anyone who wants a short range commuter car.

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You or I might, but companies have a constant flow of new middle management who want to make their KPIs this quarter and will shove their own mother in front of an oncoming train to get there. Corporations don't learn, doubly true for corporations like Apple who have basically captured an audience within their walled garden, the motivation is always all the money now, not some money consistently forever.

Even when you have a company like Samsung with their exploding battery fiasco. Sure they have protections now in place against designing a new product with bad batteries, but give it some time and they'll do it again when a middle manager (who wasn't there the first time) ignores the recommendations of their engineers and the company guidelines so they can save $0.001/phone by using a slightly inferior battery design and net that neat bonus for keeping costs down. It will always happen.

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I mean, it's worked for exceptionally well for C. Montgomery Burns, so why not this other cartoon miscreant?

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Not for all the money in the world could you convince me to touch him, let alone what you propose.

Little help here linux guys? Trying to figure out what distro to use

Yeah. It’s another one of these. But! Here me out! So I have some experience using Linux. Run some VMs for services I run in my home, I switched my surface book 3 (funnily enough) to ubuntu for my work computer as I was getting more and more frustrated by windows 11 and it turned out really good. Was able to completely get off...

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If gaming with Nvidia hardware is your primary concern, then maybe Bazzite would suit you. It's based on Immutable Fedora, with tweaks to give it a SteamOS like experience. It offers Gnome or KDE for the desktop, and supposedly has everything dialed in for gaming. I've heard a bunch about it doing great with Nvidia cards and gaming in general, I suspect that you'd be able to do everything else you might need via the desktop it provides, but I have no knowledge of how it handles multiple monitors so maybe therein lies the fatal flaw.

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I'm now deeply curious if it works for your use case. Hit me back if you give it a go and let me know if it works out or not.

DarthYoshiBoy avatar

Just as an FYI, Steam has some granularity for privacy settings, your profile can be private while your friends list is not. Steam defaults profiles to private since 2018 and as I recall I had to go and open mine back up after they made that change in 2018 (I enjoy having SteamDB able to give me some analytics on my account, which it cannot do while things are private, so I took my stuff public.) I believe that they made that change retroactive to some degree else I could have continued using SteamDB without having had to change anything in my profile which worked before the change.

I just sicced SteamHistory on a Steam account that I use for managing some dedicated servers I host, I've never futzed with the privacy settings on that account, but it does have a single friend that I set up so one of the server admins could find the account, and SteamHistory is completely unaware of that fact. It shows that the account has 0 friends and I was able to confirm that this is not the case from the perspective of that account.

You (or your friends) can check your privacy settings for Steam at https://steamcommunity.com/my/edit/settings

That said, and you did touch on this OP, nothing on the Internet should be considered private, even in the best cases it's still data that you don't have 100% control over and you should assume that it COULD be public at any time because that scenario is always only one data breach away. If you're not comfortable with your data being known by others, you should not put it on the internet in any form under any circumstances; privacy settings will not save you.

TL;DR: It seems that whatever means SteamHistory is using, they are bound by the limitations of the Steam Privacy settings, so if your stalkers were able to figure out where your account moved via SteamHistory, it's probably because your friends do not have 100% of their stuff set private or because someone inside your circle of trust is giving the stalkers an inside scoop.

DarthYoshiBoy avatar

If you use a fancy official VPN client from Mullvad, PIA, etc, you won’t need this since most clients already have a kill switch built in (also called Lockdown Mode in Mullvad).

According to the researchers...

The result of this is the user transmits packets that are never encrypted by a VPN, and an attacker can snoop their traffic. We are using the term decloaking to refer to this effect. Importantly, the VPN control channel is maintained so features such as kill switches are never tripped, and users continue to show as connected to a VPN in all the cases we’ve observed.

Killswitches are insufficient protection since the TunnelVision attack never disables the VPN tunnel. The TunnelVision attackers are instructing your physical layer connection to route everything through a node of their choosing rather than killing your VPN connection, and since the VPN connection never drops, a killswitch will never engage. The VPN stays up, thinking it is doing a good job, but in the meantime your network interface has been instructed to route no traffic through the VPN and instead route everything to the location of the attacker's choosing. I have heard that a couple of VPNs think their clients are not vulnerable here, but I haven't seen independent conclusive proof one way or the other yet.

I suspect that your "Solution" also fails to mitigate the issues in TunnelVision because it allows LAN access to the physical interface. In a TunnelVision attack the hostile has to be on your LAN (or rather the same LAN you are on since I suspect that "The coffee shop wi-fi" is the more likely network for an attack like this) already, so if they're going to tell your interface to route traffic somewhere else, in all likelihood that somewhere else will already be in the same LAN you are and their exfiltration will be allowed under your configuration.

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I've never listened to Rogan*, but I think https://www.theskepticsguide.org/podcasts does an excellent job of talking about current news and science items in an easily digestible format that mostly avoids bullshit while probably filling the same gee-whiz niche that people expect from Rogan? It's a panel, so not a single muscular male host, but I think if your sibling is pursuing Rogan because they think it's helping expose them to new interesting ideas, SGU is a vastly superior route to that end.

*I actually think my only Rogan exposure has been the SGU talking about how he more or less just believes the last thing anyone told him, whatever that might be, which seems... less good?

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I assume this is a Stargate thing and that there aren't actually that many Skeptical Guide podcasts out there.

I haven't got any dog in the Stargate fight, I've seen the original movie (good) and watched the Richard Dean Anderson TV series (better than the movie) for a while before it just fell off my radar? I'll take your word for it that Stargate Universe is the lesser of the Stargate properties.

SGU in my comment obviously is referring to the Skeptics Guide to the Universe aka, the linked podcast.

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In today's earnings call, EA CEO Andrew Wilson says he has been playing the next Battlefield game with the development team and it will be a "tremendous live service."

"a tremendous live service" said Wilson, "...but a fairly terrible gaming experience." 😁

Honestly, I think he may be right with his statement in so much as he was using Webster's second definition for tremendous.

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Except, legally in the US where Valve is based, you've got 0 legs to stand on.

Valve does dominate the market they're in, but they do so without creating an unreasonable restraint of competition in that market. They are dominant by providing the best product, not because they have unfair business practices which burden the competition. Like I said, Valve will literally allow game makers to go and take 100% of every sale they make (assuming they can process payments for free) while still allowing them to use the platform Valve have built and pay to maintain so long as they'll pay Valve a cut for the copies that are sold directly through the Steam store. Valve allows their competition to sell games that package said competition's stores inside of those games. Every EA or Ubisoft game comes with the competitor's store bundled in. They create tools that allow their competitors games to run on platforms that the competition doesn't want to bother with and they give them away. HOW IS ANY OF THAT AN UNREASONABLE RESTRAINT ON COMPETITION?

"Here you go guys, you so obviously don't understand what the audience wants. How about you give us a cut of the sales you make on your games via our platform and we'll let you install your platform on our customer's PCs? How unreasonable and diabolical of us to cut down the competition by letting gamers see what an open sewage pipe of fetid scum they'd be dealing with in our absence. BWAH HA HAH HAH! We have constrained the competition by our cunning craft of having a better product. Truly we are monsters from HELL! HAIL GABEN!" -Valve, The monopolists 🙄

Steam is the antithesis of anticompetitive, they're not the single seller of any good beyond "Valve Games" of which there are now 22(?) among millions of PC games, and they don't generally dictate prices in the market; which is the succinct way of saying that they don't live up to any portion of the legal standard for what constitutes a monopoly. Give me something factual that implicates Valve as a monopoly or get out of here with this nonsense.

DarthYoshiBoy avatar

First things first, you cherry picked the one thing from my link that supports your position intentionally ignoring that it is a single prong in a standard that has several. Second, I'm glad you brought the FTC link, because they also do not agree with your stance if you bring the whole context from your own link into the conversation:

As a first step, courts ask if the firm has "monopoly power" in any market. This requires in-depth study of the products sold by the leading firm, and any alternative products consumers may turn to if the firm attempted to raise prices. Then courts ask if that leading position was gained or maintained through improper conduct—that is, something other than merely having a better product, superior management or historic accident. Here courts evaluate the anticompetitive effects of the conduct and its procompetitive justifications.

Your definition only meets one portion of the FTC standard, which is why my comment addressed how Valve fails to meet any of the points of the standard beyond the dominant market position. YES STEAM IS MARKET DOMINANT, BUT NO THEY ARE NOT A MONOPOLY BECAUSE THEY DON'T MEET ANY OTHER PORTION OF THE STANDARD.

But Valve obviously has power.

To do what? PC is an open platform that they don't control.

Valve has the ability to do these things.

To make people raise prices or exclude competitors? Again, how or where?

Their competitors don’t.

Epic is LITERALLY excluding competitors right now for a bunch of titles, other competitors have done likewise until they recognized that customers didn't like it and decided that it wasn't in their best interest to do so.

Steam’s market share is so high, they could do whatever they want, whether or not they ever do.

Not to beat a dead horse, but how? They literally have no control over PC users beyond that which they've earned from being the best of MANY options, so how could they possibly parlay that into a power they could use to exert force over consumers or developers? Unless they did something that made them into not the best option, they have competition from every angle including from their direct competitors at Microsoft whose platform (as of March 2024) houses 96.67% of their customers with Windows being the dominant OS for Steam users by an absurd amount. There's incredible danger for Steam to try and pull anything anti-competitive because they literally live in the house that their competition built.

We are talking about a long-awaited critical darling of a game, and we are talking about how its sales blow, specifically because it’s not on Steam. Yes, it has sales, but it doesn’t have enough sales, unless it goes through this one store. Defending the store’s practices will not change that. Defending the conditions that led here will not change that.

You seem to imply that Steam being a monopoly has caused Remedy to suffer poor sales. However, we have the following problems there:

A) Steam fails to meet the legal definition of a monopoly. Just full stop. You attempt to take singular statements from a legal concept that by design has multiple prongs (specifically because we do not choose to harm companies who do no competitive wrong and come to their dominant position through the art of their craft being superior), but that's just willfully misunderstanding the concept of a monopoly.


B) A developer choosing to launch their game on the Evercade Vs and failing to see the sorts of sales numbers they might expect on Sony Playstation/Microsoft Xbox/Nintendo Switch is hardly a justification to claim that the game did poorly because Sony/Microsoft/Nintendo are a oligopoly. The dev CHOSE to launch on a shittier platform, one that doesn't offer all the things that the current market expects. The devs are going to see lesser sales as a result, that's just how it works, they weren't harmed by a monopoly effect, they were harmed by their poor market choices.

It is a dead simple fact that Steam’s market share is real fuckin’ high. So high that everyone else barely counts. We have a word for that.

See, I think your problem may be that you think market share aside, all other things are equal, which is simply not the case. By your logic I should be able to offer you a nice shiny and new Evercade Vs in exchange for your Playstation 5 because it's only the market share that makes it so that the Evercade has less games to play? It's only natural where Steam is bringing more to the table, it has more customers as a result. EGS offers a pale shadow of what a consumer gets from Steam, so why should they count as much? Who owes them that? They need to get on that level if they want that credit due. They currently matter about as much as the effort they're putting into competing, which I'll agree isn't much, but is hardly relevant here.

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I was going to get to this but my last comment ran over the 5000 character limit and had to be trimmed back. I was just going to drop it, but on reflection it is important to drive the distinction home, so here it is:

It is a dead simple fact that Steam’s market share is real fuckin’ high. So high that everyone else barely counts. We have a word for that.

We have a word for that.

Yeah. We do. That word is dominance. It is not monopoly because monopoly has qualifiers beyond dominance.

DarthYoshiBoy avatar

Pointing out which meaning applies is how definitions work. One is enough.

So which is it? Because the only one that might apply is the last and that one has a complicated legal meaning that is multiple parts of which you only seem to care about a single part: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/monopoly

DarthYoshiBoy avatar

The documents you picked are telling you, being a monopoly and doing harm are separate questions. The ability comes first, and that ability comes directly from market dominance.

This is not at all what those documents say, they state unequivocally that a monopoly has to create unfair conditions for competition AND they have to be dominant in their market. A company that creates unfair conditions for competition in their market is not a monopoly, a company that is dominant in their market is not a monopoly, it is both conditions combined that make a monopoly.

When Steam excludes a game, for any reason, that game usually sells a lot less.

Yeah, you're right, it was unfair of Steam to exclude Alan Wake 2 and cause them to lose all those sales. ಠ_ಠ

for most sales, the price on Steam is the price.

The entirety of the isthereanydeal.com website and their history for almost every game in the database proves that this is false, are we not going to require facts in this discussion any longer?

‘Poor sales are your own fault for not selling through the one store that matters,’

YES!!! FUCKING YES! If you choose to exclude the premier dominant platform that your product might appeal to, that is YOUR FAULT! Nobody owes you sales when you choose to do dumb things.

By your logic

Nothing sensible ever follows these words.

In your case you couldn't be more correct. Touché sir.

DarthYoshiBoy avatar

Here, it's easy:

Then courts ask if that leading position was gained or maintained through improper conduct—that is, something other than merely having a better product, superior management or historic accident.

Does not in fact say:

Then courts ask if that monopoly was gained or maintained through improper conduct—that is, something other than merely having a better product, superior management or historic accident.

The standard has multiple prongs. You might have "monopoly power" without in fact being a monopoly because being a monopoly requires meeting a legal standard where being the in the leading position of a market is not the singular qualifier.

DarthYoshiBoy avatar

the long term ability to raise price or exclude competitors.

Which you seem to take for a granted, but won't provide even a theoretical for how that might have happened here?

DarthYoshiBoy avatar

The existence of one premier dominant platform is called a fucking monopoly.

Read the first sentence of the Cornell Law Legal Dictionary:

A monopoly is when a single company or entity creates an unreasonable restraint of competition in a market.

Restraint of Competition links to the FTC doc that defines what that is in a page titled "Monopolization defined" and it offers a two pronged test which is exactly what I've been saying all this time, they have to be the leader in their market which they have to have "gained or maintained through improper conduct."

Your lay interpretation informed by feelings that it's bad we have a market leader (and even there I'm giving you a huge gimmie because Google Play, GOG, EGS, Xbox, UPlay, and Amazon Games all exist and sell PC games in a digital storefront entirely absent Steam, and for stores that aren't absent Steam, as I noted before even games sold for use on Steam may not net Valve any revenue thanks to the ability of devs to sell their keys directly) is just not the correct interpretation for whether Steam is a monopoly. EA alone made almost as much revenue in 2023 as Valve did, which isn't an apples to apples comparison since EA does business a lot of places, but they're just one of a lot of big fish who don't always put money in Valve's pockets in the Digital PC Games Distribution market. Many devs sell their games as Steam keys on Amazon, GameStop, Newegg, Best Buy, Walmart, Target, and all the others I linked before and Valve gets nothing (Excepting maybe a freeloading user) from those sales.

Out of curiosity I went to check out my account to see what I had bought "from Valve" vs "not from Valve" on Steam and it turns out that I own 1724 games on Steam. We can break that down in the transaction history, but I'm not going to go line by line to figure out which are DLC and which are games so this next part won't add up to 1724, but I'm providing the number to give some context for the remaining numbers so it doesn't just look like most of my transactions are MTX or something silly where Steam is actually getting something. I think it is illuminating to show that I have only made 718 purchases through Steam, I have been gifted 70 games, and I have 209 transactions which were indicated to be "Complimentary" where most seem to be DLC but there are a few games in that mix, so let's be charitable and give Valve the whole lot those as sales even though they were likely nothing of the sort. I have in my transaction history 1152 transactions that are listed as "Retail" which is Steam's way of showing that I didn't get the game or DLC from them. In 16 years of using Steam, Valve has charitably gotten a cut of 997 interactions, while I have given Steam 0% of a transaction 1152 times. That means that Valve has gotten a cut for only 47% of the content that they provide me at the absolutely most charitable interpretation of the data. So far as my account is concerned, if they're monopolizing the market, they're doing a terrible job of it by letting everyone else out there take the majority of the money while bearing none of the costs for Steam's infrastructure and development.

You can dismiss the fact that there is a historical record of Steam often not being the cheapest place to buy a game, or you can claim that just because there is a dominant player we defacto have a monopoly, or any of the other insane claims you've made but the fact is that there isn't a finding of law anywhere stating that Steam is a monopoly and it's unlikely there ever will be because they just don't meet the standard defined even if you cut down the market to the slimmest possible framing.

Unfortunately, we have clearly reached an impasse where you refuse to acknowledge statements of fact as written and will just "blah blah blah" away inconvenient facts, so I suppose this is where we part ways. Hopefully the next time we meet will bear better fruit.

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