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Comment: Re:What's unclear? (Score 1) 98

by Theaetetus (#48899033) Attached to: Why We Still Can't Really Put Anything In the Public Domain

Along with your work, you provide a promise not to sue, giving up all your rights to the work in question. It's clearly illegal to do that with the intent of changing your mind later.

Well, since the armchair /. lawyers will soon descend upon your post spouting off about how you can't enforce anything without a contract, let's just go ahead and get this posted: Promissory Estoppel ;-)

However, as your link notes, the measure of recovery wouldn't be the same as if the contract existed, since there would've been no negotiation and awarding full use of the work would be unjust enrichment. Instead, a court would probably say that there are no royalties due for past infringement, but that you don't get an unlimited right going forward to keep using the work.

Comment: Re:Slashdot stance on #gamergate (Score 1) 686

by Theaetetus (#48893393) Attached to: Doxing Victim Zoe Quinn Launches Online "Anti-harassment Task Force"

First your entire understanding is completely incorrect.

She initially claimed that a RO was needed becuase he was spreading nudes of her, while it was she who posted them publicly when working as a model. A) He did not spread the links (or rather nothing concrete can be found to link him), and B) they were distributed BEFORE the RO was issued; give they were used as justification for one.

Unless you are now arguing that action which promoted the issuance of a RO can then be used as evidence of violating it after issuance?

The police report you linked says that they were distributed in a podcast on 09/20/14. It also says the restraining order was issued on 09/16/14. Now, I'm no mathematician, but I do believe that 9/16 is before 9/20, not after.

Or are you arguing that the police report you provided is fake?

Secondly, I guess you missed the start of the second paragraph, wherein she claims Milo and Gjoni are part of some group whose purpose is to spread doxx information.

Nope, read it. You claimed - and I quote - she "claimed that he and Milo, are part of some professional doxxing organization." I responded that the word "professional" doesn't appear there. Are you now backpedaling on that and admitting that she's only claiming that he's part of a group that doxxes people? Or do you want to double down and claim that use of the word "organization" automatically means it's professional?

Third, if you simply listen to the podcast, it was not Gjoni discussing that information. KoP was, and Gjoni was just present. So even if the information was spread, it was not Gjoni spreading it. A RO may prevent Gjoni from discussing the matter but that does not hold him liable for when others do.

Do you have a copy of the transcript? I can't find one online, so I can't verify. Also, depending on the wording of the restraining order, a judge is still going to crack down on Gjoni if he tries to pull a "I didn't reveal her personal information, the person sitting to my right (reading the note I passed him) revealed her personal information".

Also in followup to this, Gjoni's Lawyer was then doxxed and threatened; and the doxxer is now being sued.

First, got a link? Second, I'm not sure how this is relevant to what we're discussing. Is there any claim that Quinn was the doxxer?
Incidentally, if by Gjoni's lawyer, you mean Mike Cernovich, I really hope he's not claiming to be Gjoni's lawyer, because he's not a member of the Massachusetts Bar, and unlicensed practice of law can get him huge sanctions.

RalphRetort has the rest of the links but I am opting not to share them directly due to doxxing issues.

I'm not sure what you mean by that. You can't provide a citation because you're afraid of being doxxed?

Comment: Re:Slashdot stance on #gamergate (Score 1) 686

by Theaetetus (#48889637) Attached to: Doxing Victim Zoe Quinn Launches Online "Anti-harassment Task Force"

OR how as part of the gag order, she claimed that Gjoni spread internet links to nude pictures of her, while failing to mention these were images she had made public of her own volition, while working as a model/camgirl.

And claimed that he and Milo, are part of some professional doxxing organization, despite in reality they had never spoken prior to GG

http://theralphretort.com/wp-c...

*Police report obtained via FOIA

First, your link doesn't say what you claim it says. The word "professional" never appears anywhere in there, nor "paid", "compensation", or anything else that might imply it was a professional organization.

Second, the police report indicates that the restraining order forbid any posting of her personal information by Gjoni. But, as you admit, Gjoni spread internet links to nude pictures of her. Regardless of who put them up initially, it certainly seems like you're admitting he violated the restraining order.

Restraining orders are explicit orders to not do certain things. If you do them, you're in deep shiat, even if they seem to make no sense at the time. For example, when people with restraining orders who are told to stay away from each other due to a domestic fight later reconcile and get back together without first going to a court and having the order withdrawn go to jail. If the order tells Gjoni not to post any personal information about Quinn, and he posts a copy of a white pages entry naming her, he's still in violation of the order. There's no "sure, I posted personal information, but other people did too" or "sure I posted personal information, but it wasn't secret" defenses. You simply can't do it, or you're in violation.

Comment: Re:Slashdot stance on #gamergate (Score 1) 686

by Theaetetus (#48889529) Attached to: Doxing Victim Zoe Quinn Launches Online "Anti-harassment Task Force"

I'm starting to think this gamer gate is just another grouping of right wing nuts.

No, that's been researched. GG is mostly left of center. This is authoritarian left (SJWs like Quinn, Alexander, Grayson, McIntosh, Chu, etc) vs libertarian left (GG).

Say what? GG's supporters include writers at Breitbart, Ed Morrisey at Hot Air, conservative Adam Baldwin, Christina Hoff Sommers, etc. This is Tea Party-style "libertarians" and conservatives against progressives.

Comment: Re:Science by democracy doesn't work? (Score 2, Insightful) 466

by Alsee (#48877703) Attached to: Science By Democracy Doesn't Work

if the same data has been used to claim a warming trend and the same data is used to say otherwise I'd call that invalid data.

The same data has been used to claim men landed on the moon, and that the moon landing was a hoax. Therefore all data related to the moon landing should then be ignored. As it's proven flawed on both counts.

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Comment: Re:A question for all the"deniers". (Score 1) 466

by Alsee (#48875839) Attached to: Science By Democracy Doesn't Work

earth is primarily a self regulating eco-system leading to stability

Gaia is living, breathing, self stabilizing organism. Gaia actively maintains optimum conditions for live to thrive. If the sun fluctuates hotter, Gaia will keep us cool. If the sun fluctuates cooler, Gaia will keep us warm. We have released two quadrillion pounds (2,000,000,000,000,000) of CO2 into the atmosphere and the laws of physics say that will trap heat.... and Gaia will.... umm I dunno... but Gaia will do it's super-smart-Gaia-thing to to actively counter it and keep us in a loving protective embrace of shielded stability. If we have a nuclear war, Gaia will cleanse the environment and protect us from that nasty radiation-stuff. Gaia loves all life, gaia loves us and protects us. Gaia loves broadway shows and long walks on the beach. Gaia has profiles on eHarmony.com and JDate.com.

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Comment: Re:The time for "from scratch" is gone for ALL of (Score 3, Insightful) 299

by NickFortune (#48874035) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Has the Time Passed For Coding Website from Scratch?
p>

The hardest lesson to learn as a programmer is that "not invented here" is code for "I am too arrogant to use someone else's solution."

Well sure. No one should ever invent anything without written permission from the Flying Spaghetti Monster, countersigned by Bill Gates, His Holiness the Pope and the ghost of Alan Turing. I mean everyone knows that!

Seriously, I quite agree with Dutch Gun's point that we all build on the work of others. I just think that blindly accepting third party solutions can be just as bad as blindly rejecting them. And if no-one ever reinvented the wheel, we'd probably still be coding in COBOL

Comment: Re:"Engineer" (Score 1) 78

by Theaetetus (#48838537) Attached to: Engineer Combines Xbox One, PS4 Into Epic 'PlayBox' Laptop

An actual engineer would have at least figured out a way to make 1 optical drive read discs from both systems.

They're both SATA Blu-Ray drives. Seems like it should be possible, but would need a SATA data splitter (which doesn't exist), or a switch to flip all of the data pins between each motherboard. In SATA, that's only really 4 pins, since the other three are ground, so a 4-pole 2-way switch should do it... but you'd be killing the shielding, common mode noise rejection between pairs, etc. at the switch. So, while theoretically, it might work, in practice it may just spit out drive errors. At least one advantage is that the SATA spec includes up to a 1m cable length, and you'd only need about 10 centimeters, tops.

Comment: Re:posting the abstract is click bait. (Score 1) 105

by Theaetetus (#48815353) Attached to: Apple Awarded Gesture-Control Patent

I'm pointing to the idea of popularity of an invention being nonobvious as an indicator that the idea was also nonobvious.

I don't see why the burden of proof is not on you for this claim.

First, because of the way the patent act is written - it says that if a patent application can't be shown to be obvious, then it will be issued. That makes sense logically, because proving that something is nonobvious after having disclosed it is going to be nigh-difficult if not impossible. What are you going to do, wipe everyone's memory and then quiz them?

Second, even disregarding that, I've already met the burden of proof - I provided evidence in the form of "you admitted this is valuable" and "this didn't exist". Together, that indicates it was probably not obvious, or someone would have done it. It's your turn to rebut it, with evidence, not just saying "it's clearly obvious".

And as of yet, you have pointed to no indicators as to whether something is obvious.

The indicator I am using is the metric that the invention in question could have been invented even if the patent had not been granted. We can never know this in the absolute sense that we can't change the past and see how it affects the future, but I think reasonable people can agree that a blue and gold polka dot smartphone could be invented even without a patent

Of course the invention in question could have been invented - it was invented, or else we wouldn't be talking about it. Your indicator is essentially "this was invented, therefore it could have been invented, and since it could have been invented, no one had to invent it because it was obvious". That circular logic applies to everything from the space shuttle to cancer vaccines.

(i.e. the R&D costs of figuring out how to do it are negligible compared to a phone of any other color)

The implementation costs are negligible... the R&D costs - figuring out that it is an improvement, doing user testing, etc., are quite high compared to the implementation costs... and, I believe, that ratio was your metric indicating it should be patentable.

Tell that to Zynga, or any of the indie designers they've ripped off.

If this were not true, then no one would ever design any games or software seeing as how unprofitable it would be.

Well, there's a lot of shovelware out there, and not much in the way of new designs, you'll notice. It's starting to become like Atari in the 80s.

On the contrary, it's pretty easy. [youtube.com]

Writing an application that mimics some very small subsection of a much larger UI is not very hard. If this was all there was to Apple's UI, then they *really* don't deserve a patent. This software is an "easy copy" of Apple's UI like how a picture of a Ferrari is an "easy copy" of a real Ferrari. Is it easy to copy a Ferrari? Maybe yes, maybe no, but a picture of a Ferrari is not proof that it is easy (unless you have a very low standard for what counts as a Ferrari).

However, once you can buy a Ferrari and take it apart, it's pretty easy to copy with a machine shop and some skilled workers. And since we're not talking about the engine, but the UI, it's even easier to make a body case of a Ferrari and build a fiberglass look-alike. I'd give a Hollywood special effects shop a week, tops.

Similarly, I'd give a team of Russian hackers a week or two to reverse engineer any UI you build, even if it took you months and months of trial and error and alternate designs to come up with the best one.

But they also come up with new aspects, which is why the UIs are evolving. Those new aspects that others copy, because they believe they're the best aspects, must not have been obvious, or they would already have been incorporated - since, as you say, they're acknowledged as the "best".

By this definition of obvious, *nothing* would ever be obvious because for anything, there was a point in time at which it didn't exist.

You're confusing "new" and "nonobvious" - they're actually two different statutes. If something has never been done before, then it's new, by definition. However, if all of the pieces of it had been done separately and they could be readily combined, then it's obvious, even though it's new. Peanut butter sandwiches are known; tuna fish sandwiches are known. Maybe no one ever put them together, because yech, so it's "new", but it's also an "obvious" combination of known elements.

But if the patent claim was peanut butter + tuna + [previously unknown substance], then that's not obvious, no matter how obvious peanut butter + tuna would be.

In the definition above, the UI designers come up with new aspects, which others than copy. Those new aspects haven't been done before. When the resulting UI is "known aspect" + "known aspect" + new aspect, then it's not obvious.

Comment: Re:posting the abstract is click bait. (Score 1) 105

by Theaetetus (#48815021) Attached to: Apple Awarded Gesture-Control Patent

I think you are confusing the idea of an invention being obvious and the idea of the popularity of an invention being obvious.

I am not saying that it is obvious whether any idea will be popular.

I'm pointing to the idea of popularity of an invention being nonobvious as an indicator that the idea was also nonobvious. And as of yet, you have pointed to no indicators as to whether something is obvious.

We are talking about copying the design of a piece of software, and incorporating it into your own software in order to sell. The cost of this is not negligible at all. In fact it is probably pretty close to the actual cost of designing it in the first place in many cases.

Tell that to Zynga, or any of the indie designers they've ripped off.

Go ask someone to recreate IOS or android or windows UI for use in your own product to sell. This cost will not be negligable. Nor can you just drag and drop some files to have that UI magically appear in your own application.

On the contrary, it's pretty easy.

All of these UIs have copied the best aspects (from their point of view) of the others, which is why there is a lot of co-evolution happening among UI design.

But they also come up with new aspects, which is why the UIs are evolving. Those new aspects that others copy, because they believe they're the best aspects, must not have been obvious, or they would already have been incorporated - since, as you say, they're acknowledged as the "best".

Comment: Re:posting the abstract is click bait. (Score 1) 105

by Theaetetus (#48814509) Attached to: Apple Awarded Gesture-Control Patent

Was it? Here's the thing - you already admitted this was valuable. If making a smartphone in gold and blue polka dots meant that your profit would increase and you knew it, wouldn't you do it? Of course you would, you're a smart guy who likes money. Or, conversely, if making a smartphone in gold and blue polka dots meant that your profit would increase and you didn't know it, then that would explain why you didn't do it. So, when someone subsequently comes out with a gold and blue polkadot phone and their sales shoot up, you can't very well say "pff, that's obvious, I knew about that all along... I just didn't do it because I hate making money" and expect to be believed.

You seem to be reasserting the claim that something can not be obvious if no one has done it yet. It is this very claim that I am disputing.

While it may not be obvious that people will like a blue and gold polkadot phone, it should be plainly obvious that such a phone could be made and how it could be made, even if no one ever makes one.

Not exactly... I'm asserting the claim that if no one has done something yet and it's commercially valuable to do so, then it's likely not obvious. Evidence of that is the fact that if it was obvious, someone would have taken the free money. Because no one has, that implies no one thought of it.
You're disputing this by saying "no, it's plainly obvious." Well, that's a fine conclusion, but where's your evidence?

If X is the the price of R&D and Y is the price of copying it, we should allow patents on products with a high X:Y ratio.

Sure, let's go with that - the price of copying software is negligible, while the price of designing it is comparatively huge. In fact, the copying price is so small - a click and drag, in one scenario - that the ratio approaches or exceeds that of pharmaceuticals, where at least you have to make a physical product. So, software should be patentable, and expensive machines may not be patentable, depending on how closely the cost to build them approaches or exceeds the design cost.

Comment: Re:posting the abstract is click bait. (Score 1) 105

by Theaetetus (#48812905) Attached to: Apple Awarded Gesture-Control Patent

Is it? If so, why don't we have it already in products?

For the same reason we didn't have smartphones until processors, batteries, screens, etc were at a level to make smartphones possible.

Once we had sensors like the kinect, the necessity for good ui drives the innovation.

Kinect came out in Nov. 2010. It seems like you're admitting that it wasn't obvious until at least then, no?

Prove it - explain why it was so obvious that people already knew about it, but no one bothered making it.

Something doesn't need to exist for it to be obvious. I can make a smartphone that is some color that no one has ever used to make a smartphone. Should I be able to patent smartphones of a particular RGB value? Or was it obvious that it this was always possible to make a smartphone of any arbitrary color regardless of whether or when anyone actually did it?

Was it? Here's the thing - you already admitted this was valuable. If making a smartphone in gold and blue polka dots meant that your profit would increase and you knew it, wouldn't you do it? Of course you would, you're a smart guy who likes money.
Or, conversely, if making a smartphone in gold and blue polka dots meant that your profit would increase and you didn't know it, then that would explain why you didn't do it.
So, when someone subsequently comes out with a gold and blue polkadot phone and their sales shoot up, you can't very well say "pff, that's obvious, I knew about that all along... I just didn't do it because I hate making money" and expect to be believed.

Why would you spend millions or billions of dollars to create and test a drug only to have some other company copy it and undercut you.

Why would you spend hundreds of thousands or millions on UI design to create and test a UI only to have some other company copy it and undercut you? In fact, why would you spend any money on research, if someone can just steal yours freely (and you can steal theirs)?

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