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Jean-Baptiste “JBQ” Quéru
Works at Yahoo
Attended École Polytechnique, France
Lives in Bay Area, CA, USA
44,889 followers|7,865,505 views


Comcast, United, and Uber

We've all read horror stories about Comcast's legendarily horrible customer service. I'm in the middle of moving, and my wife had to spend almost 15 minutes on the phone with them to move our existing service as-is without adding on anything else on top. That doesn't mean that all ISPs are that hard to deal with, Sonic is famous for being great to work with.

Major airlines also have a bad reputation about the way they care about customers, with United leading the charge. Personally, my worst experiences have been with Air France. Other airlines do better, Southwest routinely makes the news for doing the right thing for its customers, and I've been happy flying Virgin America, Alaska or Jetblue.

The reality is that we in the US are spoiled with good customer service, and the Comcasts and Uniteds are exceptions. By and large, business small and large usually try very hard to provide a good experience.

That's where Uber comes in. For all the discussions and controversies about Uber, at the core they're here because customers who need point-to-point on-demand transportation expect good service, and the taxi incumbents don't provide such service and aren't even trying. I've had my own share of bad experiences with taxis in San Francisco, in San Jose, in Las Vegas, in Kansas City. By comparison the very few times my wife or I used Uber (in our case UberX), it was pleasantly unremarkable, it just did things right, in line with the kind of service I've come to expect in the US).

In the service industry, it pays to provide good service.
Barney Dawn's profile photogeorge oloo's profile photoJoren Van Severen's profile photoChris Dolan's profile photo
+Ra Ankhesenamope​ what you are referring too is ticketing. These guys are nice usually.
Then there's lost baggage support. They usually are OK too.
Then any other complaints is through a form.
Take a look
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Death Valley

Weather forecast for Death Valley for the next 10 days: Death.

Death Valley NP is unusual in that its facilities are only open in winter.

Edit: those are Fahrenheit. That's about 48C during the day and 28C at night.
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It's called Death Valley for a reason :)
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Different things to see in NYC?

I'll be visiting NYC for business at some point in Spring, and this time I expect I'll have a bit of time to actually visit.

I'd like some recommendations about places to visit.

I'm interested in things or places that are interesting but not necessarily the most mainstream tourist attractions. I have a special interest in transportation, including transportation infrastructure and history.

I've been thinking about taking the Staten Island Ferry, the Roosevelt Island Tramway, seeing the Verrazano–Narrows Bridge, the Bayonne Bridge, possibly the Conference House, Fort Wadsworth.

I could end up seeing Grand Central Terminal (especially for the Park Avenue Viaduct), the High Line, the subway station on Broadway at 125st (the only elevated part of the subway in Manhattan). I'd go to the High Bridge but it won't be open to pedestrians yet.

If the weather is really fine, I might go to Coney Island or Rockaway Beach / Jamaica Bay. If not, I'd like to see the Panorama of the City of New York in Queens Museum.

I'd love to hear of other similar suggestions.
Michael Steiger's profile photoAlan Oleski's profile photoJoe T.'s profile photoForrest Thiessen's profile photo
Wow. I live here and there are several of those I have yet to do. You'll have to show us locals around the next time you're in town. LOL. 
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Rule of 5?

2014 smartphone sales:

1 Blackberry phone sold for every 5 Windows phones.
1 Windows phone sold for every 5 iOS phones.
1 iOS phone sold for every 5 Android phone.

Android FTW!

It's actually pretty cool that I played a central role on the Android platform side.

What's even better on the coolness scale is that as an application developer I can now write an app once and have it compatible with about a billion and a half devices, which is probably an unprecedented scale.

It's a good time to be in the mobile industry.
IDC's latest numbers on smartphone market share make it clear - the smartphone OS wars are pretty much over, and only two champions are left. In the green corner is Android, in the blue corner is iOS, and between them they accounted for 96.3% of smartphones shipped in 2014.
Eric Morst's profile photoThorsten Wiewelhove's profile photoReuben Conceicao's profile photoVinod Vishwakarma's profile photo
Once upon a time, Nokia overruled the whole mobile phone industry and look where they are now. Nothing's permanent.
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Real food

On my mother's side, my grandparents lived in the countryside and worked in farms, he a blacksmith and she a field worker. They didn't have much, but they rented a piece of land on which they maintained a huge fruit and vegetable garden, and they had poultry and rabbits in the yard. The village also had dairy and cattle farms. I saw vegetables get harvested. I saw animals get caught, slaughtered, gutted, their skin or feathers removed.

At home, my mom also maintained a large vegetable garden. On some week-ends, my father would fish for semi-wild trouts. He still does, occasionally. Some uncles would hunt.

I grew up with the notion that I should know where my food comes from and how it's made. Heck, even when my mom prepared ground beef, she'd buy a chunk of meat and grind it at home. I didn't eat in a fast-food restaurant until I was a teen.

I also grew up eating offal, including parts that aren't legal in he US ;-) Even today, I look forward to a good piece of heart, liver, kidney, stomach or tongue more than to a piece of plain muscle.

A big difficulty in cuisine is about seasoning. It's hard, it takes ingredients and practice.

There are still some things I rarely eat, typically because I didn't grow up learning those tastes. Specifically, I have a hard time with ginger and cinnamon.
Greg Bodnar's profile photoMichiel Scholten's profile photoGeorge Rainovic's profile photoDaniel Hendrix's profile photo
Totally understand how you feel, +Keith Deacon​. In college, my roommates and I made friends with the owner of the fish market on the pier. We would treat ourselves to fresh fish off the boat for fairly cheap. Our fav was oysters and we would fill up a huge Styrofoam container full and take them home. After college, I noticed that every time I had oysters, it felt like I had a serious case of food poisoning. I overdid it on the all you can eat dungeness crabs too after I graduated and developed an allergy to crab too. I only break out into hives though so I usually take an antihistamine and I'm fine. Pregnancy seemed to take care of the crab allergy but I'm too scared to try oysters again. 
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Of odds

The article linked here is pretty lengthy and complex, and definitely interesting.

At the heart of the story, though, lies a single decision: he could have walked away with $250k, or played what amounts to a fair coin toss where the outcomes are $25k and at least $500k.

Mathematically, In terms of pure expected value, he actually made the right choice, with an expected value of at least $262.5k. There's little point looking deeper at the math, mostly because traditional gambling math assumes that you can play as many games as you want, which isn't the case here.

There are however several human effects at play here, each of which make the decision feel like the wrong one:

Hindsight is 20:20: thinking about it harder, he thinks that the odds weren't actually 50:50 but he missed a clue that would have given him an edge.

We don't value loss and lack of gain the same: feeling that he already owned $250k, he feels more pain from the $225k that were taken from him than from the $250k he didn't get to take from the game.

Finally, we have a non-linear perception of value: he feels that the $225k step from $25k to $250k would have made a bigger difference in his life than the $250k step from $250k to $500k. The former is the difference between a new car and retiring earlier, the latter between retiring earlier and retiring even earlier, i.e. a qualitative gap vs a quantitative gap.

Casinos love to play with those perceptions, typically the notion of trading losses in the quantitative domain for the hope of a win in the qualitative domain, i.e. the jackpot. That's why e.g. you'll see games that require to play 100 cents at a time instead of a dollar at a time, because after all we can almost all afford to lose a few pennies.
It took about a second for me to realize I had made the biggest mistake of my life. There was a perceptible shift in the energy of the room, a subtle change in Terry Crews’ affect and expression. Like an arthritic sensing impending rain, I simply knew. I’d gambled a...
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Divna fotografija
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Have him in circles
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Irresponsible or unavoidable borrowing?

Growing up in Europe, I didn't pay much attention to the construction of the Euro, and whatever little I remember has nothing to do with the economics of it. Now, older, having lived in the US for a while, with a Greek wife, I'm looking at the way the Euro is unraveling and I've been using the opportunity to try to figure out how it works (or, rather, why it doesn't).

The core mechanism that allows multiple states to share the same currency is pretty simple: since the weaker states can't devalue their currency to compensate for their trade deficit with the stronger ones, money has to flow from the stronger economies to the weaker ones in order to maintain the balance.

We see that in the US: as measured in GDP per capita, there's about a 2:1 ratio between the strongest states and the weakest ones. To compensate for that, a lot of money flows between states, through the federal government. Most taxes in the US are federal taxes, i.e. about 75%, and the federal government doesn't necessarily spend the money it collects in the exact states where it collects them. As an example, every year about 130 billion dollars paid by California in federal taxes don't make it back into California. Texas and New York are the two other states that have a negative balance of more than 100 billion each. For those 3 states, that outflow on money represents 5.7%, 7.2% and 7.4% of their respective GDPs. California is literally sending money to other states so that those states can buy California stuff. The same is true for Texas, New York, and about 20 of the 50 states that are sending money to the other 30.

Looking back in history, the Marshall Plan followed a somewhat similar logic: the US sent aid to Europe, to allow Europeans to buy US goods, which was both a stabilizing mechanism for European currencies that otherwise were in a devaluation spiral, and an outlet for the huge US industrial production. For reference, the Marshall Plan amounted to 120 billion dollars (in today's dollars) over 4 years, which is tiny compared to the amount of money that the federal government now redistributes across state lines.

We can compare that to the situation in the Eurozone/EU, where the GDP per capita varies by a factor of about 2.3:1. Germany's balance in the EU budget is negative by less than 9 billion Euros. France's and Italy's follow at approximately 6.5 billion and 6 billion. Germany's 9 billion Euros is tiny compared to California's 130 billion dollars, especially since Germany's GDP is 60% larger than that of California. Since the US and EU economies have approximately the same size, that's a reasonably apples-to-apples comparison. The biggest negative balance that a Eurozone country has with the EU is about 0.41% of its GDP. The biggest positive balance is 1.3%. Within the US, only 4 states out of 50 fall within that range.

That's the problem right there: Germany is not flowing enough money out to other Eurozone countries to compensate for its own very strong economy. That's true of other rich European countries as well, e.g. Netherlands, Austria, France.

From the Greek point of view, the only way to get that money to flow in order to maintain balance had been for the government to borrow. That wasn't irresponsible borrowing. That was mechanical, predictable. Greece's poor historical discipline around government finances only accelerated an unavoidable process, but it's not a root cause.

In fact, predictably, pushing Greece into austerity made things worse, much worse: with the root cause being Greece's relatively weak economy compared to the rest of the Eurozone, an austerity approach can only put Greece in a position where it needs even more money to flow in in order to maintain balance.

Even if we assume that all of Greece's debts get somehow forgiven with no further constraints and that Greece manages to run a balanced government budget, it would still be in an unsustainable position in the current Eurozone as its weaker economy would force additional money to flow in. Unless the Eurozone very significantly increases the amount of money that it redistributes across borders, Greece should get out of the Euro at the first opportunity, i.e. literally Monday morning, July 6.

Worse, with Greece out, it's only a matter of time for another weak country to find itself in the same position: that might be Portugal, Spain, Italy, or if Bulgaria, Romania or even Hungary join quickly enough that might go through that same death spiral quickly enough to see the Eurozone as a revolving door, with barely enough time to come in before being back out.

Once that first batch of weak countries is out, there'll always be more that'll be at the bottom of the scale and will find themselves in the same position. France is comfortably in the middle of the pack within Europe today, but attrition will eventually push it toward the bottom, and France having to leave the Euro is a true nightmare scenario for everyone.

In order for the Eurozone to survive, its rich members will need to send a lot more money to the poorer ones: the rich ones literally can't continue reaping benefits from a currency based on the European average without sharing those benefits with the poorer ones that bring that European average down. Otherwise, the Euro will consume country after country until it hits a country that is literally too big to fail.
Sven Wagner's profile photoBoris Callens's profile photoBruno BEAUFILS's profile photoMarty Gentillon's profile photo
+Jean-Baptiste Quéru exactly. Major part of people europeus, say's i'm portugueses, french, etc... Not i'm european
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Competition and innovation

"[taxi drivers and companies are] worried that their industry will be decimated if local and state government doesn't intervene."

Actually, their problem is that the government did intervene. Shielded by both the artificial scarcity created by medallions and price regulations, which were both created by government intervention, the taxi industry became complacent, with no attempts at innovating or even at providing decent service.

The industry of getting point-to-point car rides on demand isn't getting decimated. In fact it is in sharp expansion. It just happens that taxis aren't seeing any of that growth. Let's be honest here: a regular taxi driver would be quickly dropped from Uber for providing their usual level of service.

(h/t +Fabrice Di Meglio​)
Not long ago, in America's big cities, purchasing a taxi medallion—the city-issued license to operate cabs—was about as sound of an investment as they came. But with the ascension of Uber and other
Corey M (EnemyofGLaDOS)'s profile photoThys Meintjes's profile phototaxi & cab us1's profile photoThomas Davis's profile photo
The point is the reimbursement is used as feedback to increase or decrease the number of drivers or quality of drivers. If Uber doesn't reimburse properly, they would lose drivers until even the desperate would realize it's not worth it. The problem is what other employment opportunities are out there? At a low reimbursement rate, no one would try to make a living at it, and it would be more of a "I'm going this way with room in the car; might as well get some money for that empty seat." But it has to be enough to make the hassle worth it. Or a really interesting passenger. Tindr meets Uber. 
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Best cover of Billy Idol's "Rebel Yell"?
321 votes  -  votes visible to Public
Kill Hannah
Original FTW
Louis Gray's profile photodavid moloney's profile photoNathaniel Manista's profile photo
Stephen Colbert. Years ago on "The Daily Show".
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"Impossible" is how progress happens

Follow the 4 steps in the picture.

Once you hit the FAQ and you bump into an "impossible" problem (i.e. a problem that's not been solved before), you're actually about to make progress. True progress happens when people solve problems that haven't been solved before.

That's actually been a constant in all my jobs so far: solving new problems all the time.

(h/t +Chris Pick)
Owain Davies's profile photoMarco Zorzy's profile photoGunnar Forsgren's profile photoDoug Felt's profile photo
So your saying on Chrome OS or Firefox OS people can release new browsers - and those new browsers have the exact same rights and access as the existing "OS"? Because at least with chrome OS thats not my understand at all of how it works. As far as I know "apps" are just packaged web-pages basically. 
If FxOS can act just like Android or Windows and let you install new browsers (or any other local app) and it just happens to use JS as a codebase and html as a gui then that really seems like your replying to a different conversation then the points I was making. FxOS wouldn't count as a "everything web based" then. And thats the context of what I was saying - I have met many people who literally think everything should be web based. NOT "web standards based" or "making use of some web tech" but literally webpages.

To live in a world without installable, locally, browsers it would be like living with "Chrome Frame" rather then chrome.

To take an specific example of something current browsers cant do from my field AR;

You can put decent 3d and a webcam linked background with gyros and gps, not a problem. The basics of AR. done in webgl/js not a problem at all.

But what if you wanted to do something like Hololens? 
Not just multiple 3d overlays, but critically, ones from multiple 3rd party sources running at the same time in the same field of view?
Well, as it stands you'd need to compile them together. But to do that in a webbrowser today means one domain would need
to be the trusted party for the compiling. For every "app" or "information" in that space would be funnelled via 
their own site. Aside from inefficiencies this would have huge privacy and security implications. Not to mention a waste of bandwidth.

What you need instead is closer to the idea of tabs - where multiple information sources run independently with no awareness of eachother.
But you need to see them in the same space at the same time. Like photoshop layers. Ideally they need to occlude and shadow cast
A new browser could be certainly be made this way.
But not a web app in an existing one. 
Not if security, bandwidth, privacy or lag is even vaguely a concern.
It would exactly like logging on a website to emulate tabs for you using frames....would you trust that site?

And thats even assuming you want to use existing communication protocols, whos to say someone might not come up with better one day?
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Engineers and photography

There's something interesting about photography and engineers: as an art, photography is remarkably technical.

After years of letting my equipment sit on a shelf, I'm trying to get back to photography, both serious and not-so-serious. Be aware that the results are now quite likely to be on Tumblr and Flickr, though: as a Yahoo employee, the best way for me to make those products better is to actually use them.

Anyway, since we're speaking of photography and engineers... Yahoo is hiring, specifically for the Android Flickr app in San Francisco. If you're a senior Android engineer and would like to be part of the Flickr team, please send me your résumé at Our San Francisco office is at the intersection of 5th and Mission.

Full job description:
Click the link provided to see the complete job description.
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Engineers stick to what you know. Let us artists worry about how to best enhance the world.
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Have him in circles
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Software Engineer
Low- and mid-level software engineering, large-scale source code management, Open Source
  • Yahoo
    Architect, Senior Principal Engineer, 2013 - present
  • Google (Android)
    Senior Software Engineer, 2007 - 2013
  • Openwave (Mobile Browser)
    Software Engineering Manager, Mobile Browser, 2001 - 2007
  • Be (BeOS)
    Software Engineer, 1998 - 2001
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Bay Area, CA, USA
Chalons-sur-Marne, France - Pont-a-Mousson, France - Foug, France - Fumel, France - Nancy, France - Paris, France - Toulouse, France - San Mateo, CA - Millbrae, CA - Union City, CA - Foster City, CA - Milpitas, CA
French Geek Foodie Traveler Skier Hiker Photographer Gamer Astronomer Painter
I was born in the Champagne region of France. My parents moved to Lorraine, in the region of Nancy, when I was still too young to remember anything about it, and I lived there until my early teenage years. A few months before I turned 15, we moved to the South-West of France for a couple of years. Pretty much on my 17th birthday we moved back to Nancy and I completed high-school there. My parents then moved to UK for a few years, and I stayed in France to go to college. Over 8 years in college in Nancy, Paris and Toulouse, I studied mathematics and physics, then computer science, then software engineering, along with a bunch of smaller things on the side.

I moved to the San Francisco region for my final college internship, which turned into a full-time job, and I've lived and worked there ever since.

In 2000 I met Eugenia. She was living in UK at the time, and the Internet helped us stay in touch. After a lot of paperwork madness to figure out how a French citizen living in the US could marry a Greek citizen living in the UK, we got married less than 2 weeks after 9/11 (a long story) and we've lived happily ever since.

My career so far has been focused on software engineering, mostly in Operating Systems and Mobile. However, this is my personal account and I'd rather not talk about work here.

I love traveling, skiing, hiking. I play video games. I have a few small telescopes. I enjoy good food and good wine. I'm a photographer and a painter, though not a good one.
Bragging rights
I once rode a bike over 3 Category-1 Tour de France climbs in a single afternoon. I wrote more than 100000 lines of assembly before I was 20.
  • École Polytechnique, France
    Mathematics, Physics, Computer Science, 1994 - 1997
  • ENSEEIHT, France
    Computer Science, Software Engineering, 1997 - 1999
Basic Information
Looking for
Friends, Networking
January 7, 1974
Other names
JBQ, Djaybee from the MegaBuSTers, Jean-Baptiste QUERU, Jean-Baptiste Maurice Queru, Jeanbaptiste Queru, jbqueru, querujb, Jean-Baptiste Queru
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  • bit Dungeon
Jean-Baptiste “JBQ” Quéru's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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Wide selection of superior quality fish for a very reasonable price. I keep coming back here. Hotaru is a great place to have a late lunch on weekends.
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