commented on Slog Super Poll: Who Should Be Mayor?
A victory for McGinn means a victory for public transportation, for effective land use, for clean energy, for city-wide broadband, and for sustainability in general.
It's not clear what a victory for Ed Murray (or anyone else) really means, other than a defeat for McGinn.
Murray's candidacy website doesn't even have an "issues" page. I think that speaks for itself.
commented on If You're Having Trouble Hailing a Cab Right Now...
@3: At least in Seattle, Uber is actually very price-competitive with Yellow Cab's fares, once you add in a generous tip. (Uber's fares are tip-included.) The difference is that Yellow Cab drivers assume that you're not going to tip at best, and will try to stiff you at worst, and so they treat you poorly. Uber drivers know that they're going to be fairly compensated for their time, and so they treat you well.
For me, it's no contest -- since I started using Uber about 2 years ago, I've ridden a regular cab maybe 2-3 times. The price isn't meaningfully different, and the service is just so much better.
commented on T-Mobile Ditches Phone Contracts Altogether
I'm amazed that no one has mentioned Ting yet.
@1, et al.: The problem I have with Republic is that, if everyone uses the cell network all the time, they'll go broke. I prefer to use a provider with a sustainable business model.
@5: Ting has LTE, even with BYOD. For the vast majority of users, they will be much cheaper than any of T-Mobile's new plans, and without any contract in sight.
@10: With Ting, the marginal cost for using 100 megabytes of data per month is $3. For people who are in Wi-Fi range 95% of the time, it's hard to imagine a better deal.
commented on Your Cell Phone Taxes Are Higher (and Lower) than You Think
@7, @8: I'm nervous about Republic, since they have an incentive to discourage their customers from using their service. Because of Ting's pricing model, Ting has an incentive to *encourage* their customers to use their service. For example, it's the only carrier I've seen where tethering is free. But that's only natural, when you actually pay for what you use.
@14: How on earth did you get that? These are smartphone plans? How much is "all the data we want"? My girlfriend and I use about 500-600 MB of data, 200 minutes, and ~500 messages per average month, which is about $40 on Ting.
commented on I Hate the Airline Industry
@5: Doesn't compare.
The cell-phone industry is actually fairly competitive; witness the dozens of MVNOs. I can name a dozen mobile providers off the top of my head. I currently pay about $30/month for my smartphone plan, including tethering, and no data caps or throttling.
Wired internet is definitely less competitive than the airline industry, but it's not terrible either. For $80, Comcast gives me internet that is plenty fast for what I use it for, and way faster than it was even 5-10 years ago.
But honestly, airlines aren't as bad as Goldy makes them out to be either. A lot of the things that suck about air travel are because of federal regulations (whether the consequences are intended or otherwise), or because of the reality that air travel is exceptionally inefficient and resource-intensive.
No -- the true answer to Goldy's question is the record industry. What other industry repeatedly sues its customers for millions of dollars? What other industry goes out of its way to make its products hard to purchase and to access? It's not like distributing music is inherently expensive. (There's a reason there are no "pirate airlines".)
I haven't bought an RIAA album in years, and I don't miss it at all.