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Comment Re:Good (Score 1) 152

5 minutes of my life wasted, but here's the synopsis of the cancelled talk:

"What drugs do to sexual performance, physiological reaction and pleasure is rarely discussed in - or out of - clinical or academic settings. Yet most people have sex under the influence of something (or many somethings) at some point in their lives.

In this underground talk, Violet Blue shares what sex-positive doctors, nurses, MFT's, clinic workers and crisis counselors have learned and compiled about the interactions of drugs and sex from over three decades of unofficial curriculum for use in peer-to-peer (and emergency) counseling. Whether you're curious about the effects of caffeine or street drugs on sex, or are the kind of person that keeps your fuzzy handcuffs next to a copy of The Pocket Pharmacopeia, this overview will
help you engineer your sex life in our chemical soaked world. Or, it'll at least give you great party conversation fodder. "

Its very possible the grounds for cancellation were ridiculous, but clearly a talk on casual drug use may have some though very marginal use at a conference on security, but IMHO.

Comment Re:Oh, Christ, here we go... (Score 3, Interesting) 152

I'd call this the taxi distinction. Every time my girlfriend, sees a taxi she's terrified that they're going to do something dangerous or reckless. The reason? Quite a few taxi drivers are doing stupid things. Are all of them? Certainly not. Are they any more likely to do stupid things per km of driving vs. the general public? Almost certainly not, but the difference is this:

1. To my GF, all taxi drivers are the same. They represent the single very present danger of being in an accident, so she is terrified that all drivers (the good and the bad) act according to their
2. Taxi drivers are generally on the road much longer hours than we are, so statistically if nothing else, they're more likely to be involved in accidents.

Have these women had bad experiences (perceved or in real) in the workplace? Almost certainly.
Are their experiences with men in general colored by these bad past experiences (much like my taxi analogy)? Very possible.

It really sucks to generalize, but no matter how much you want to fight against it, its ingrained in who we are to defend against people/things that have wronged them (or perception of wrongness).

Comment Speakings of the OSS in question (Score 1) 184

They use MUMPS. I know its all supported by some people and I know the flames are coming, but really? MUMPS. I'd say integration could very well be considered a pain point in the language. In my cursory investigation, the recommended integration for other languages / technology chains is a Node.js based web services adapter... oh well.

Comment Re:Mozilla lies. (Score 2) 367

Well, I installed a Windows 10 (preview) from scratch and installed firefox/chome. Both asked me to make it default, both got a windows prompt telling me the program wanted to be default, and both times I clicked yes. Default browser after this: The microsoft one. The only thing I could do to change the default was to specifically go to the default applications settings panel and update them specifically to use chome/firefox.

Now mind you, this was a recent pre RTM version so I can't say specifically if that was fixed in final, but if not, I imagine this can be quite miffing.

Comment Re:May you (Score 2) 330

In all likelihood, the convicted rapist couldn't get their names removed anyways since its in the public's best interest to know, but hell slashdot thinks the whole law is a rubber stamp, so whatev's. Well, it really depends on the laws of the land, because sometimes countries allow for long-ago rapists' records to be expunged, so maybe right-to-be-forgotten would eventually kick in for 'reformed' rapists.

Comment Re:magic unicorn wipe public information law (Score 1) 330

I can get paid under the table and the gov can't stop me
I can cross borders and buy there to avoid local taxes

Just because I can avoid the rules doesn't mean the rules aren't important. Maybe eventually the majority of the world will agree on rules and there won't be places for cheating the system to happen, but something tells my that is your worst case scenario.

"Well, the creeper took nude pics of me walking around home naked and posted them on the internet. I was pissed until I realized that information just wants to be free, so like whatever."

Comment Re:There is no right to be forgotten (Score 1) 330

There's also no natural laws for right to life, speech, privacy, property, etc.. but we have laws to enforce them. I think a you need a better argument, like the actual material harm to society if you want anyone outside of the fringe to listen to you. Yes, I'm addressing you, not the topic at hand specifically.

Regarding the actual point you made in the end, the law apparently has some form of distinction between privacy and the information in the public's interest, so depending on the implementation of said laws, I can't see this being much harm (within their jurisdiction) assuming that the "public's interest" is held with sufficient weight.

Comment Re:And yet, Google does censor (Score 1) 330

Child pornography is almost universally illegal throughout the world. Certainly sexual exploitation laws vary throughout the world, given that children can legally marry in some countries (sigh). I don't know a single Country that allows distribution of said material, though it would add value to the discussion for the interested scholar.

Comment Re:When do I get to be a multinational corp? (Score 1) 330

No, there's hell to pay if said executives ever enter british controlled soil or are extradited. I'm not sure if the company in question's assets would be siezed pending trial, but I suppose that depends on the teeth of the laws in question.

Assuming that Google is actually in material breach of the law, then yes. They influence the laws, submit to the order (effectively giving up all right of control over their content internationally) or do like they did in China and completely exit the territory. Trust me from being in China for a trip, its a bitch to live without google services.

Note, all the French Newspaper publishers raising a stink will be even more screwed since all their cheap revenue AdSense will also fly away, but oh well. Back to hiring Ad sales guys!

Comment Re:If you think Windows is bad (Score 5, Interesting) 367

Its almost like... in those cases the OS is a specially crafted web browsing tool instead of a GENERAL PURPOSE operating system.

Nobody's assuming that a phone / tablet / netbook have unlimited control (though it is nice when given), but for a general purpose OS, you expect fluidity. I guess some of the big shifts in Windows since 8 (maybe earlier, but in much smaller doses) has been their ham-strung proprietary and irreplacible components that lock down more and more of the OS. This may well be my last Windows if Linux Gaming becomes more of a thing. If the last couple years' growth has been any indication, it looks like a real possibility now.

Comment Re:App store lockdown (Score 1) 170

Which precicely nobody I've ever met cares about. When people talk about games on Windows, they're talking about Steam, battle.net, possibly origin, or some standalone like LOL. What they don't talk about is Microsoft, Windows store yadda yadda.

If anything, a heavy handed app-store approach would only speed the vast exodus from native platform apps (at least from MS platforms anyways).

Comment Re:The joys of youth (Score 3, Interesting) 148

I've included some notes from my own experience to help those (not necessarily parent poster) avoid similar failures.

- don't get locked in to single-vendor technology that might disappear on a moment's notice.
Realistically, evaluate if said technologies can survive company collapse or not. Languages / Technologies with heavy internal investment like C# are a lot more coupled to their companies than say PHP, Ruby, etc. That said, maybe the Mono/Apache/etc.. type groups out there could keep the lang alive if MS pulled the rug. Java could be better off if Oracle killed it to open up the ecosystem pieces they've kept ransom. HTML/Javascript are completely open (though standards keep things semi-coherent) but realistically 3-4 vendors control the narrative and if 2 decided to go in a different direction, you'll have a lot of chaos to keep things working.

- hide API's inside your own classes. That makes ripping them out and replacing them with something else so much easier.
Well, the general mantra of layering access to things certainly mitigates unnecessary coupling which is a good thing. This should be applied everywhere though, not just inner class scoping.

- stick to standards.
Yep, and invent some of your own if there's a lack of good standardization where there should be.

- invest in regular modernisation. Do it when reasonably can, not when you absolutely must.
A tricky proposition, but one that should certainly be striven for. Admittedly, saying lets drop all this stuff that produces more revenue to work on X which may eventually help us maximize revenue in the future is certainly not as clear cut, but in the ideal world, the code is always getting improved, polished, simplified, etc.. Writing (CS101 here) low coupled, high cohesion code will vastly simplify future improvements. Just make sure that you always consider 3rd party libraries / platform libraries / language quirks included into external dependencies that may evolve over time.

- refactor whatever stinks.
Whenever I try refacting crap (core piece of functionality), I write a TON of extra tests for before/after comparison because no matter how perfect your re-implementation, there will always be those bazaar corner cases that worked (possibly through fluke/magic) in the original spahgetti that violates the implied or explicit contracts in the future. Refactor for sure, but don't ripshod, or your eventual replacement will be refacting/fixing your POC for much the same reason you refactored.

- keep your own skills up to date. Apply as needed.
This is never bad advice, but just remember that just because you learn a new technique / technology, don't go running out to refactor everything to use it. Generally if it was popular 10-15 years ago, its probably stood the test of time and passed, while newer tech should be looked at carefully and evaluated for specific cases where appropriate.

Comment Re:We're a tech company... (Score 1) 247

"If Uber succeeds in getting laws changed in order to deprecate the existing taxi licensing system, we all win"

Its all fair and great to lobby for laws to be relaxed / reformed to allow for a new and efficient competition. Its great that people want to update outdated regulations.

Its not great when they 'getting laws changed' is code word for doing whatever they like and stand behind the impunity of... what exactly? Do you defend Irish/Lux tax evasion by companies as well? The difference being at least those corporations are at least 100% legally operating in the countries they're bilking money out of.

Worse, the sad truth is there's a ton fo ride sharing software, and only Uber's getting the (bad) attention which is actually helping their valuations / buzz like mad. Take away: Break laws, get press, profit, cash out before company implodes, 'retire somewhere warm' if you did something really bad and didn't greese the right palms.

Comment Re:The whole issue is going to get worse for Taxis (Score 2) 247

Do we have horses and buggies to this day? Yes. Are they used for transportation? yes. Are they in any way relevant to modern day communiting and transportation needs? No.

Are these robot taxis going to pick up people's baggage from the curb and put it in the trunk?
No, hire a limo or a 'real driver' for double / triple the cost for that honor. Why not, since you're flying your private jet around exclusively for your needs as well. Hell, just load a car on that jet and you're done!

Will they be able to walk into a building to pick up a package to be delivered?
Nope, I doubt its a common request, but you'll have to hire a freight courier or in-city courier, or a bike courier, or...

Will they be able to resolve a dispute between two riders?
Nope, but depending on the dispute and the regulations, there may be a fixed reservation lock for multiple potential pick-ups and a call-for-help button in case of real life emergencies (like many modern citys' public transit does already).

Is it legal for an unattended child to ride in a vehicle with no adults in it?
Who knows (when autonomous vehicles are legalized), but I know for a fact fear mongering won't answer that question any better (PS: Since when do people leave their child unattended in a cab, even with a real driver? Its just a bad question in so many ways).

Comment Re:Not all workers are equal. (Score 2) 429

If said company was in such a hurry for a hot specialized skill, why not hire a temp contractor for it (or contract into hire if necessary) and spend the months during the contract to run up the skills of the remaining members to fill in as necessary? If the specialization is temporal to your business needs then don't pay for it perpetually. Instead, use a temporary worker for a temporary job. If it is necessary for your ongoing business needs, make a new position for their specialized needs and hire for that (and consider that resource specialized while 'filling in' while said specialization isn't 100% utilization).

Unix will self-destruct in five seconds... 4... 3... 2... 1...