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Comment: Re:Publishers are Dinosaurs. (Score 5, Insightful) 405

Many authors would rather write than worry about finding and paying for editing, proof reading, cover art, advertising, promotional travel, etc. They are capable of it, but would rather spend their time doing what they do best, which is write. Also, they would rather work under contract with some guaranteed income rather than shoulder all the risk themselves.

Comment: Re:Pretty stupid reasoning (Score 4, Insightful) 405

People who are not involved in the publishing industry think it would be great for authors to self publish. Interestingly, authors seem to think almost uniformly that it is a terrible idea. The authors, who have a very good idea just what publishers can add to the book, mostly really really like what publishers do for them.

The authors also don't think that they will make more money by self publishing either, because they know how much less they will be writing because of the time spent on other tasks currently handled by the publisher.

Comment: Re:Do we really need new books? (Score 1) 405

The flaw in your argument is clear in that you are pirating books to read. The argument should work the same if you limit it to works on Project Gutenberg, which are available legally. There are more books written before 1900 than I will ever read. But I want to read books written after that, because the world has changed. You do want to read recent books by pirating them. But if there are no new books, then in some number of years all the books will be about a distant and foreign world without the same relevance to us.

Comment: Re:tabs (Score 1) 688

by Crispy Critters (#46871483) Attached to: Firefox 29: Redesign
Indeed. I never figured out why everyone dumped Mozilla for Phoenix in the first place. (The memory usage and speed were identical for me on Linux.)

And a firefox is a freaking PANDA, not a fox, so change the stupid logo. Yes, I DO get insanely annoyed over pointless things, thank you for asking.

Comment: Re:Paper for me too (Score 1) 170

by Crispy Critters (#46801271) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Professional Journaling/Notes Software?
"On the computer side, a folder with the name of the project/task/whatever to dump digital stuff related to it."

I also always use filenames like 20140420.txt. Graphics get names like 20140420.jpeg. Search with grep, back up with rsync, remote access via ssh. This works for me because (1) most of my notes are text and (2) keeping the material readable for 10 years or longer is a requirement. Take notes by hand in meetings and transcribe later, which means I rewrite them into English while I still remember what happened.

Comment: Re:The difference... (Score 1) 140

by Crispy Critters (#46768545) Attached to: Bill Gates Patents Detecting, Responding To "Glassholes"

"The problem is that people get irritated when people are casually pointing cameras at them the whole time."

Good theory, but does it match the data? Are the people being assaulted for wearing google glasses being assaulted when they have been pointing the glasses at someone for an extended period of time in an environment when they expect to not be recorded? Or have the attacks occurred in public places which are likely already under video surveillance and full of people snapping photos of friends and bystanders?

Alternative theory: People like hating on overt geekiness. Hypothesis: If hovercars were invented and were sold for ten million dollars each, people would love them, but if only geeky hobbyists had them, people would smash them in the street.

Comment: Re:Doppler seems wierd (Score 1) 491

by Crispy Critters (#46574529) Attached to: How Satellite Company Inmarsat Tracked Down MH370
I don't follow your comment.

The question is what if anything breaks the symmetry between north and south. The answer appears to be (from the comment you linked to) that the satellite has a significant motion with respect to the Earth's surface, even though it is in geosynchronous orbit.

There are still two possible paths, a north and south one. But because of the motion of the satellite, one path will be straight at a reasonable speed, and the other will be curved and too fast or too slow to be realistic.

Comment: Re:Doppler seems wierd (Score 1) 491

by Crispy Critters (#46568813) Attached to: How Satellite Company Inmarsat Tracked Down MH370
It doesn't seem that anyone has an answer to this question. There is some other source of information or another assumption that is not being shared with the public. The claim is that all the data is from the single Inmarsat, so there is no other data to add in to triangulate. The satellite is in geosync, so we can ignore relative motions. Unless somehow the wobble of the orbit is large enough to have some effect over 8 hours. There could be some assumption about the route--for example like assuming the plane will fly flat and level at a constant relative air speed and then adding in prevailing air currents. Or some other reason to believe the plane would not be flying straight relative to the ground.

Comment: Re:Well, I'm clean AND I'M INFECTED?! (Score 1) 220

by Crispy Critters (#46524755) Attached to: Malware Attack Infected 25,000 Linux/UNIX Servers
Other posters explained (so this is redundant -1). ssh is supposed to claim -G is illegal or unknown depending on the version. The backdoored version DOESN'T complain, which is the indication. But "-g" is a legitimate option, so there is no complaint from either the safe or hacked version.

Comment: Re: How are those kind of things patentable? (Score 1) 406

by Crispy Critters (#46464191) Attached to: Apple Demands $40 Per Samsung Phone For 5 Software Patents
"My question is quite simply what type of protection should a company be provided to prevent effectively wholesale copying of their product."

A question that deserves a serious answer. One approach is that described in the Constitution (but not followed). The justification for giving this kind of monopoly ownership to creators is to not merely to reward them or some sense of fairness but to encourage the act of creation.

Apple made an immense amount of money off the Iphone despite any copying of their refinements and style. No additional money is needed to further encourage them. Would society benefit from giving Apple stronger property rights in its designs? If not, then don't.

Comment: Re:Practicalities (Score 1) 136

by Crispy Critters (#46347017) Attached to: Major Scientific Journal Publisher Requires Public Access To Data
"You're wrong. It is perfectly clear what needs to be published openly: whatever is necessary for someone to confirm that the total analysis is valid."

This is not what is under discussion. To confirm the total analysis, you need access to all the raw bits, all the calibration data underlying the analysis, all the computer codes used, copies of any written information in logs and lab books, and all the laboratory equipment as it was at the time the data was collected. Plus, you need to have all the knowledge that is in the researcher's head. And all of this tells you absolutely nothing about the validity of the research--the real question is whether the technique applied is a correct way to measure the phenomena.

"That is the fundamental principle required for scientific progress."

No it isn't. The fundamental principles are that results can be reproduced and that results can be used to make predictions.

If you demand all this, the question is whether governments are going to increase their research budgets by a factor of 10 or simply eliminate all publicly-funded research.

Comment: Re:HIPAA (Score 2) 136

by Crispy Critters (#46340317) Attached to: Major Scientific Journal Publisher Requires Public Access To Data
Unfortunately, it has been shown already that the few details relevant to medical studies can often be used to uniquely identify individuals even after name and address are removed. "Yaniv Erlich shows how research participants can be identified from 'anonymous' DNA"

Same will be true for various kinds of employment data and census data.

God made machine language; all the rest is the work of man.