How much? Thats my question about iRobot's new mini-warbot, developed for DARPA. Not only is it cute, but equip it with open hardware interfaces and/or programming environment and it should have serious potential for the hobbyist market, as well as repurposing to other applications.
We’re way the heck out here in Valley Bottom Heights and Trout Antler Estates because we were at war with the cities. We fought rotten public schools, idiot municipal bureaucracies, corrupt political machines, rampant criminality and the pointy-headed busybodies. Cars gave us our dragoons and hussars, lent us speed and mobility, let us scout the terrain and probe the enemy’s lines. And thanks to our cars, when we lost the cities we weren’t forced to surrender, we were able to retreat.
Yes. He's defined part of the the battle-line of today's political cold war. Those 'futurists' who think that increasing fuel prices will bring suburbanites back to live in central city tenements are out in la-la-land. Instead the jobs may just follow the productive; Detroit gives a preview of that outcome.
A failed state. California's state expenditures have increased 35% since the 'tax cutting' Governator took office in 2003. As Matt Welch asks:
What, exactly, has been the return on this added investment? If spending under Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger increased 6.75 percent a year during mostly good times, surely there must be, say, a 3 percent increase in the quantity or quality of...something? Crickets.
If we had back that 35% increase, the California budget would be in surplus. Instead of considering rolling back the spending, we're asked for more taxes and budget gimmicks. When the electorate wisely refuses them, the political class once again threatens to shoot their hostages - public safety and parks - while protecting the public employees' unions. What is there about layoffs and salary and benefit cuts that they don't understand? The private sector gets to deal with this in every downturn, while our betters in the political class skate through. Needless to say, this contributes greatly to the business climate in California.
A relic of the 20th century. Just what the newspapers need, more advertisers headed for the exits. Local fish-wrappers have long been the vehicles for required public notices of events such as mortgage foreclosures, public meetings and business name registrations, which creates an effective subsidy to their businesses. This requirement dates back to when the town rag was in fact read by most of those who would need notice of such events. With the readership shrinking, that's no longer a good bet, and some government entities are starting to take notice. It's pretty hard to argue that publication on dead trees is more useful than a combination of appropriate RSS feeds and a searchable archive would be. As the linked article points out, there are issues regarding reliable and trusted implementation, but it shouldn't be hard to beat the status quo. A business opportunity out there for someone - Google? Iron Mountain? Maybe even archive.org, if they'd like an actual revenue stream.