Posts by Rich of Observationz

  • Hard News: YouTube and the programmatic…,

    I'd imagine Jucy and Jetstar buy up lots of cheap space targeted at anyone from NZ - it's probably not more subtle than that. It's a cheap method of advertising, not least because of the low work factor for the advertiser - they don't need to make a business decision as to where they want to place ads or engage with the individual site owners.

    And they can easily measure this stuff - when they sell an air ticket or rent a van through a click through from a site, they can see that the customer found them through a web ad and measure how many dollars they spend on ads for each dollar of revenue.

    [Of course, this doesn't directly measure people who decide *not* to use them because of a misplaced ad, or people who become aware of their existence through ads and browse to the website directly].

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The lessons of Prohibition, in reply to Carol Stewart,

    The French got out of that (to some degree) by:
    - modernising rapidly. Rural France in 1950 was like a developing country - the change from that to today's autoroutes, hypermarches and nuclear power stations was one of the most abrupt in Europe.
    - constructing a political system (the Fifth Republic) that ensured the peasants would have a limited ability to interfere with the programmes of the elite

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The lessons of Prohibition, in reply to DeepRed,

    "according to science"

    What is that site, anyway? It's looks like the kind of place one might pick up malware...

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: A war crimes inquiry; or…, in reply to Alfie,

    Debatable, if you read the material I linked.

    The Geneva Conventions were drafted and agreed as a lowest common denominator, covering desperate, 1941 type situations and attempting to provide something that would be accepted by states very far from being liberal democracies.

    One issue here, which could be explored by an inquiry, is who sets the rules of engagement, military commanders or ministers, and what general principles do they start from in doing this.

    Simply saying that a 'crime' has been committed and we're going to nail Corporal X to the wall for it make make some people happy, but doesn't get to the root of the problem.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: A war crimes inquiry; or…,

    Seems to me that any prosecution would come unstuck on the "which are not military objectives" bit. Whoever in the chain of command found themselves in court could rely on the fact that they had information that the village was a "military objective".

    Of course, what is defensible under the Geneva Conventions doesn't necessarily match with what we want our troops to do as a nation - especially when they've embarked on a conflict of no benefit to NZ.

    Which suggests that maybe a public inquiry could look into what is really a matter of public policy rather than criminal law - why do we send troops to "other people's wars" knowing that any such action is likely to result in civilian casualties?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The next four years, in reply to WH,

    a short video of one of the ceremonies at the Independent

    Are they trying to somehow manifest a reader?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Friday Music: Sound and Light,

    LED shows were a very expensive thing in the mid 2000s - I remember an awesome art piece at Burning Man with a cube of thousands of ping-pong balls with LEDs inside them forming 3D patterns.

    Nowadays, with Neopixels, it's easier and cheaper to do.

    As for Bono, pay yer feckin taxes, then I'll listen.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Fear of Cycling,

    it's now become commonplace for skiers and snowboarders to wear helmets, without any element of compulsion

    A lot of skiers and snowboarders disagree with that. Recreational skiers (and even instructors) aren't at a particularly high risk of head injury. Wearing a helmet reduces your peripheral vision (which is more important when making turns downhill than it would be travelling straight on a road), it makes you a more solid danger to other skiers and it tends to encourage more reckless skiing.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: What the wastewater tells us…, in reply to Moz,

    To be more accurate, they aren't supposed to sell any weed they confiscate, and they certainly don't return any proceeds to the public purse.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: What the wastewater tells us…, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Ritalin isn't an amphetamine, it isn't even a phenylamine, so unlikely to test similarly.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5423 posts Report Reply

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