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Comment: Re:But... but nucular is bad! (Score 2) 143

by BarefootClown (#47623601) Attached to: Transatomic Power Receives Seed Funding From Founders Fund Science

I'm not saying nuclear is "safe". There's no such THING as "safe". But coal isn't safe. Oil isn't safe. Natural gas isn't safe. Wind isn't safe. Wave isn't safe. Solar isn't safe. Hydro isn't safe. All of them come with their own risks and tradeoffs.

The damage done by a wind turbine falling over, or solar panel slipping off a roof tends to be orders of magnitude less serious than a major nuclear accident. That's why wind farms and solar installations can get insurance, and nuclear can't.

Wind also kills birds. Solar requires rare earth elements that are toxic to mine, refine, and dispose of at the end of the panel's life. The damages involved are more than just "[object] falls over."

Comment: Re:Illegal and Dangerous? (Score 1) 200

by BarefootClown (#47391697) Attached to: The View From Inside A Fireworks Show

No, he'd win it. Even if the engine immediately went to zero thrust, the other engine would still be sufficient to find a suitable landing field. In fact, such things are practiced regularly, both simulated (for large jets) and in real life (smaller aircraft). It'd be expensive to fix, but entirely survivable, given a suitably-competent pilot.

Comment: Re:He picked the wrong moment to support amnesty (Score 1) 932

by BarefootClown (#47219215) Attached to: House Majority Leader Defeated In Primary

"Just that simple"? You like the idea of closing borders, evidently, but do you like the idea of produce prices, meat prices, service-economy costs, and just about every other menial-labor field seeing its labor costs double overnight? Because that's the consequence of requiring that citizens do those jobs. Stoop work is awful, backbreaking work that pays bullshit. It only survives because the immigrants who do it are so desperate for the work that they'll take it.

And if at the same time we close the borders, we cut welfare benefits, so that the lazy who vote for a living have to actually work for a change, what would that do for the labor pool?

Comment: Re:I get enough flying priuses already. (Score 1) 186

by BarefootClown (#47212449) Attached to: Toyota Investigating Hovercars

Seriously,

Show me the lines of the traffic code that require slower people to move to the right side.

It's a "convention" at best.

43 O.S. 11-309, notably (5):

5. Upon a roadway which is divided into four or more lanes, a vehicle shall not impede the normal flow of traffic by driving in the left lane; provided, however, this paragraph shall not prohibit driving in a lane other than the right-hand lane when traffic conditions or flow, or both, or road configuration, such as the potential of merging traffic, require the use of lanes other than the right-hand lane to maintain safe traffic conditions. [Emphasis added]

+ - Why China Banned Windows 8->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Microsoft's decision to stop supporting Windows XP (still the OS of choice in China) provided an extra push for China to wean itself off dependence on foreign tech giants. The banning of Windows 8 on government computers is supposed to create a new market for domestic Chinese operating systems-- but there's a long way to go."
Link to Original Source

+ - Facebook Wants To Listen In On What You're Doing-> 2

Submitted by SonicSpike
SonicSpike (242293) writes "Facebook is rolling out a new feature for its smartphone app that can turn on users’ microphones and listen to what’s happening around them to identify songs playing or television being watched. The pay-off for users in allowing Facebook to eavesdrop is that the social giant will be able to add a little tag to their status update that says they’re watching an episode of Games of Thrones as they sound off on their happiness (or despair) about the rise in background sex on TV these days.

The feature is an optional one, something the company emphasizes in its announcement. The tech giant does seem well-aware that in these days of Snowden surveillance revelations, people might not be too keen for Facebook to take control of their smartphone’s mic and start listening in on them by default. It’s only rolling out the feature in the U.S. and a product PR person emphasized repeatedly that no recording is being stored, only “code.” “We’re not recording audio or sound and sending it to Facebook or its servers,” says Facebook spokesperson Momo Zhou. “We turn the audio it hears into a code — code that is not reversible into audio — and then we match it against a database of code.”"

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Bullshit (Score 1) 216

by BarefootClown (#46784465) Attached to: Click Like? You May Have Given Up the Right To Sue

There's no offer, there's no consideration, and there's no acceptance - there isn't even an offer *of* anything.

I know you didn't read TFA, but you could have at least read the summary:

...if they download coupons, or 'join' it in social media communities.

Coupons constitute something of value (consideration). Arguably, so do membership and participation in the social media communities. General Mills is offering those to users; the users accept when they click OK to join or download.

Just because they're of little value doesn't mean they're not consideration. Courts generally will not look to determine whether the consideration is adequate; it's up to the contracting parties to make that decision.

Comment: Re:Possibly Worse Than That (Score 4, Informative) 216

by BarefootClown (#46784019) Attached to: Click Like? You May Have Given Up the Right To Sue

Contracts have to be negotiated and signed by two parties to be valid. You have to have an opportunity to modify the terms before exchanging money. Buying commodities doesn't meet that standard. Neither do post-purchase EULAs.

This is patently untrue, on many points.

First, there is generally no requirement that contracts be signed, or even in writing. A very few types of contracts are governed by the Statute of Frauds, which specifies that there must be a writing signed by the party against whom a term is being used. The specifics vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but the linked Wikipedia article is reasonably representative. Outside the Statute of Frauds, there's nothing wrong with an unsigned, or even oral, contract.

Second, you do not have to have the opportunity to modify terms period, let alone before exchanging money. Terms may be offered on a "take it or leave it" basis; the Uniform Commercial Code, section 2-207 provides for how negotiation happens, and expressly includes an option to forbid any alternate terms. At common law, the principle is the same: there need not be an opportunity to make a counteroffer.

In this context, it would be entirely unreasonable for us to assume that respondents -- or any other cruise passenger -- would negotiate with petitioner the terms of a forum-selection clause in an ordinary commercial cruise ticket. Common sense dictates that a ticket of this kind will be a form contract the terms of which are not subject to negotiation, and that an individual purchasing the ticket will not have bargaining parity with the cruise line.

Carnival Cruise Lines, Inc. v. Shute, 499 U.S. 585 (1991)

As to "before exchanging money," it is very common for terms to be left open at the time of acceptance and tender:

Transactions in which the exchange of money precedes the communication of detailed terms are common. Consider the purchase of insurance. The buyer goes to an agent, who explains the essentials (amount of coverage, number of years) and remits the premium to the home office, which sends back a policy. On the district judge's understanding, the terms of the policy are irrelevant because the insured paid before receiving them. Yet the device of payment, often with a "binder" (so that the insurance takes effect immediately even though the home office reserves the right to withdraw coverage later), in advance of the policy, serves buyers' interests by accelerating effectiveness and reducing transactions costs. Or consider the purchase of an airline ticket. The traveler calls the carrier or an agent, is quoted a price, reserves a seat, pays, and gets a ticket, in that order. The ticket contains elaborate terms, which the traveler can reject by canceling the reservation.

ProCD, Inc. v. Zeidenberg, 86 F.3d 1447 (7th Cir. 1996)
The ProCD opinion also cited to Carnival.

I cite specifically to ProCD because it was a post-purchase EULA case, and it directly contradicts you.

In short, every single point you made is precisely and exactly wrong.

Comment: Re:Who'll spit on my burger?! (Score 2) 870

by BarefootClown (#46580267) Attached to: Job Automation and the Minimum Wage Debate

So...production increased at a rate greater than cost increased?

Yeah, it's not about actual dollars spent. It's about marginal cost: cost per unit of production. Put differently, the company increased in output more than it increased its spending; that means it's now a bigger company, in terms of market saturation, and has a greater profit, both in absolute terms and likely a greater profit margin as well.

Comment: Rule of Law (Score 5, Interesting) 519

by BarefootClown (#46423821) Attached to: Massachusetts Court Says 'Upskirt' Photos Are Legal

This is a good thing for anybody who believes in the rule of law. Laws should be written to clearly put those governed on notice as to what behavior is prohibited. Pervy or not, if the photographer was within the actual letter of the law, he shouldn't be be held criminally liable for doing something which was not prohibited. The solution is not to "interpret" the law to extend beyond its text; the solution is to fix the bad law.

If laws can be "interpreted" to go beyond their plain meanings, then it becomes difficult for those subject to them to figure out what is prohibited. Not only is it patently unfair to hold someone accountable for an action that wasn't listed as prohibited, there is a strong constitutional precedent for holding it "void for vagueness." See, e.g., Connally v. General Construction Co., 269 U.S. 385, 391 (1926):

[T]he terms of a penal statute [...] must be sufficiently explicit to inform those who are subject to it what conduct on their part will render them liable to its penalties and a statute which either forbids or requires the doing of an act in terms so vague that men of common intelligence must necessarily guess at its meaning and differ as to its application violates the first essential of due process of law.

Yes, we will be going to OSI, Mars, and Pluto, but not necessarily in that order. -- Jeffrey Honig

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