A few numbers would be useful. "WOW, I get tons of electricity, and it didn't cost all that much" doesn't really convey any information. Water heaters are quite cost-effective, as the panels are about 50% efficient, but PV panels are about 10%, and cost about the same per area.
I'm assuming the AC won't run off solar - you have about 1kW of panel, which generates about 80c of electricity a day. This is woefully inadequate to run AC (and there are better ways of doing it).
BTW, I've dealt with TfS, and I completely agree - they are fantastic!
You think Outlook is bad try Lotus Notes. Outlook blows Lotus away. And I love my excel unabashedly.
In the midst of all the political back-biting of recent on-line commenting, this thread was a breath of fresh-air.
My favorite quote of Steve Jobs was to President Obama: You have to fix American education and you should start by squashing the teachers' unions.
riorican, Give in like a lemming...never.
My dear friend...I'm leaps and bounds ahead of you in the tech world.
I happen to be a developer and have developed on many systems. Apple is the most closed system I have ever encountered! I'm glad when you go to use a computer that someone else has, and the supposed mess they have their screen...it is their own individuality showing up. Some desktops are messy, some are clean like mine.
And by the way...I'm talking about the iPod, iPad, and iPhone.
Can you change the icons to be different? Can you make the more important ones bigger? NO! In the current windows Nokia phone, you can. In the Surface tablet that will come out soon, you can! And speaking of desktops, in the Windows 8 desktop, you can. Apple gives you a square icon and they say that is what you need.
Stock price is no proof of a company's skill to build a better product. One time, 1999 I think, Microsoft bailed out Apple with a nice loan to keep them from going under. If Apple (as the minions have said) has always been the better company, why did they need Microsoft to bail them out? Look it up.
Customize your iPad to have some of the squares to be bigger than others. Put some individuality into your iPad and send me a screen shot...it cannot be done.
If Apple is such an open and wonderful environment for people to do their own thing, then how come the following rules exist:
1) You can only develop apps for iOS devices on a Mac, no other platform
2) You can only deploy iOS apps through the Apple store
3) You have ONE platform to develop iOS apps on
If you as a user, maybe its fine. If you are a application developer their rules and requirements are far beyond stiffling.
Mike, you can't be serious when you wrote: "Thank goodness for companies like Microsoft (and particularly Google) that allow us to make the product our own and have our individuality branded on it."
Come on, dear fellow -- give in.
Because there's no company anywhere in the entire universe that is more dedicated to making a product "our own," than Apple.
As proof, every time I've tried to use a neighbor's Microsoft-run PC, may I ask you - how come it looks exactly like the other ones I've seen? (Which, I must say, is also very messy and almost unusable.)
As for your claim that Apple does "not allow for hardly any customization of their products."
False. Totally false.
What you write is something written by someone who has yet to explore the world's best, most accessible, innovative, and adaptable operating system.
One that Microsoft and Google are trying, unsuccessfully, very hard to emulate.
May I offer another proof? Check out the stock price of Apple. Then, check out the stock price of Microsoft.
You are, dear fellow, so far behind the reality of what's really happening in the tech world.
If I were you, I'd take my PC to the town dump and then head off to the nearest Apple store.
I completely agree with the first poster. Microsoft Word is a great application that does a lot. That might be its only problem, it does too much. Course, most successful applications have gotten bloated over the years.
Usually people who "hate" on Microsoft have become an Apple minion and can't see the truth anyway. Apple is a closed system that does not allow for hardly any customization of their products. They give you what they think (no, not think, say) is good "for the masses".
Therefore, you have a product that no matter how many people own an iPhone, iPod, and iPad, they all look the same and have the same boring home screen. Thank goodness for companies like Microsoft (and particularly Google) that allow us to make the product our own and have our individuality branded on it.
Gracias, "interested guy."
But please forgive me when I must observe that what you posted was more than a bit off topic.
CEO's are NOT about the company they lead. They are about what's for them in salary, benefits, pension, stock options and the payment they get when they depart the company, whether fired or retired. This is what a CEO is about. Most CEOs don't stay with any company long enough to make a different. Many have left within a year after taking control. but you notice they always leave with a big severance package, stock options, pension, etc. This is what the CEO is about. I have worked with some and I know what motivates them. Some CEO's don't even have any experience in the company they are leading. So CEOs are not motivated to make a company successful, more profitable, Its the money they will be banking.
What truly amazes me is that the clearly frustrated users, like Renée, of the clearly inferior Microsoft OS, were actually introduced and were nurtured by the clearly superior Apple OS.
Back in my day, almost all the school systems in the US of A, introduced kids on how to love and use computers via the Apple OS.
But what really amazes me, even more, is that I keep reading that the Apple OS is only good for creative folk.
Which means, I am guessing, that Microsoft OS has been reserved only for dolts?
Very interesting comments about Photoshop. Adobe has been very successful with its products, but for anyone who wants to really get a program that is far better than Word or Photoshop or - without even the slightest question - any iteration of Adobe's 'InDesign' that was supposed to replace Pagemaker, find an ancient copy of that program! Pagemaker in the early stages was in fact the 'simplified' program that northstar is searching for. Its problem is that it was written for the Mac and the world switched to the PC - and transferring PM to the PC brought in some clunkiness that induced some frustration. However, rather than cleaning up that inadequate transfer attempt, Adobe ditched the whole idea and made InDesign, a powerful, feature-laden program that does fine if you have the time and energy to figure it out, but is useless for most folks.
I've got to agree with the prior poster. Adobe PS has a difficult learning curve and I find that I'm having to constantly go to Google and You Tube for tips. However, my feeling is that there's a HUGE opportunity being missed. If developers can find a way to take programs that are inherently complex and really find a way to simplify their use, then I'm on board with that.
It was just her simplistic opinion, and not a very interesting opinion. Athol could probably write a more interesting opinion piece, and TW would probably pay him about $40 for it. Why not give it a try?
TW has some very good writers, but the articles can't all be the best. Just skip the very few boring ones or complain as did Athol when you read them.
Actually Renée, I really don't like Chuck George. His grammar, outlandish claims, and warnings seem somewhat childish to me. Jimmy Stewart was the best; now the best is Erin Christiansen. If you want to see the effects of global warming go to NSICD.org amd see the tiny ice cap over the North Pole, an all-time record low. The last New Yorker cover said it all! ATHOL
I agree with Ronko - still another "nice piece," Renee. Thank you.
Speaking of Ronko's "extremes," late afternoon yesterday, here in Rio Rico, we had one of the weirdest, most thrilling storms I've ever relished.
The west side of my house bathed in sun; the east side a torrent of high winds and rain. The storm then moved to engulf the house, dropping almost a quarter of an inch within 10 minutes. Followed by a pleasant drizzle. Followed by a temperature drop from 91 to 68.
Early this morning, I listened to "official" weather radio that claims we may get another big storm this afternoon. Hope so. But the way things happen around here, who knows?
Yesterday's storm surprised, apparently, even the weather service. It wasn't predicted. Weather here seems hard to predict, likely because the mountains provoke such unpredictable up and down drafts.
Which makes it so much more fun to live here rather than in the Midwest with all those boring, prevailing winds from the SW.
With a wonderful sense of enthusiasm, Renee, you touch on many of the qualities ,that attracts me to Tucson. The climactic changes and extremes, the unique flora and and special wild life. Nature in general seems to be ratcheted up a few levels in the Sonora desert. Your love and energy of nature ask the readers to slow down, appreciate their environment, and enjoy what is free and abundant in life. We so need to protect these precious things as well as celebrate them. Nice piece!
So you are feeding a truckload of debris into your dumpster a bit at a time? Why didn't you just bite the bullet and take it to the landfill and pay the $15 while you had it in the truck?
If you share a community dumpster like I do, you know how it feels when you go out there a day after pickup and some inconsiderate dolt has already filled it with construction or yard debris.
I pulled two big truck tires and a pile of broken concrete block out of ours a few days ago to make room for what is permitted.
Its a shame that some people see it as a right that because the dumpster is part of the water fee, they can use them to dispose of items that legally they are responsible for and should be paying to dispose of separately. I have a contractor in the neighborhood that regularly fills ours with trash from his work sites instead of disposing of it at his cost as part of his earning a living.
I admire that you cleaned it up but please, make sure that your disposing of it does not infringe on the rights of others to have access to those dumpsters as well. Just consider this comment as my rant against folks who constantly abuse the dumpster privilege.
But hey, if they don't care about dumping their trash into the wash instead of paying to dispose of it, they probably wouldn't care how they inconvenience others by hogging the dumpster either.
Bill Heath, your full of mierda.
Obstructionism stopped more hydro electric dams in the Grand Canyon. Litigation resulted in the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service processing policies for almost 800 species that were either threatened or endangered. Profligate clear cut logging was limited to the benefit of watershed health that helped the salmon fisheries. DDT was banned to the benefit of many bird species, most notable the bald eagle and other raptors.
There is a long list of successful environmental achievements accomplished by obstructionism and litigation, and those efforts will continue.
I am a modern environmentalist and a Republican, folks we must face the fact that the environmental obstructionism practiced by the Democrats for decades has failed us in this modern world. I claim the tact of environmental obstructionism used by the Democrats to champion the environment has failed us. Why, because those tactics may save a tree with the result of a forest that burns, protect a reef while the ocean is poisoned, a failure. The big modern environmental picture is sustainability. Man is a natural part of our environment not an outsider as the obstructionists base their practices on. Imagine beavers trying to get a permit to build their dams they require to live and prosper. The flooded meadows displacing the poor little field mice, plants destroyed etc, beavers would be outlawed! Step back and look at the big picture. The copper being minded will be used, now that copper can be provided by countless places on this earth none of which will disturb the earth’s environment less than we do here in the USA if we use sustainable practices. Imagine the scenario if the environmentalists working with the beavers planning and spending monies, not on legal fees driven by those pushing obstructionism but on real solutions to the very real concerns held by all. A company after spending tens of millions maybe hundreds of millions in the courts has that much less to spend on the real concerns regarding their projects! This isn’t rocket science folks, working together always will accomplish more than feral obstructionism making no one but the lawyers better off.
In closing old school environmental obstructionism doesn’t work as an environmental protection plan; we have the ability to plan and more important implement modern technologies to appease known concerns. Money to lawyers or money to actually protect the environment with engineered solutions? Man and his needs are a natural part of our environment and we must not forget this while we squabble in the courts using the same old unproductive obstructionist actions taken by our Arizona Democrats as a placebo to make us feel better instead of taking engineered solutions and implementing them actually accomplishing something! Let’s work together and engineer a better world because I can assure you we cannot just litigate one!
Charming piece - smiled all the way through. Thanks.
When I lived in the Northeast, I dreaded the first day of summer, because it meant that each day would grow shorter and that another gloomy, bone-chilling winter was too soon on the way. (Is there an uglier, more depressing month than November up there?)
But here, despite the heat, I celebrate June 21st for the same reason: each day growing shorter leading to what is the best of all seasons hereabouts.
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