Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
For the out-of-band Slashdot experience (mostly headlines), follow us on Twitter, or Facebook. ×

Comment: Re:Civil versus criminal law (Score 1) 203 203

...but if you do so maliciously and mendaciously...

That has nothing to do with the case IF what is said is true...

Mendaciously means falsely, e.g., "lying, untruthful, dishonest, deceitful, false, dissembling, insincere, disingenuous, hypocritical, fraudulent, double-dealing, two-faced, Janus-faced, two-timing, duplicitous, perjured;"

He already had lack of truth as a condition, therefore it has everything to do with the case.

Comment: Re:Authors have never heard of accelerometers (Score 1) 52 52

Yes, an object with zero acceleration could technically be moving anywhere between not and the speed of light, but that's pedantic.

Simply, no. It's not pedantic. Because you ignore that your accelerometers are not perfect, that your constant is a variable due to accumulated error in your accelerometers, that you need not glide around on an ice rink in order for your generally-increasing (magnitude) accumulated error to make that constant an unknown variable, and that GPS solves that problem quite nicely.

All you need to monitor is translational vibration (evidence of non-rotational movement) which will be present regardless if you are walking or driving.

Thus proving that you're being pedantic and an idiot, as anyone who has ever worked with inertial guidance systems versus GPS guidance systems will repeat to you. Over... and over... and over. But since you're quite willing to dish out criticism without accepting any, I doubt that you'll bother to ask anyone working in the real world with real equipment how it all actually performs.

Comment: Re:Authors have never heard of accelerometers (Score 1) 52 52

Do the authors not know what accelerometers are? That makes me question their expertise for writing about this subject.

Do you not know the laws of motion and calculus? Because those make me question your expertise as a critic.

Even assuming that your accelerometers are perfect (which they most assuredly are not), tracking accelleration over time gives you an assumed speed plus an unknown constant, which you are assuming is zero.

But you know the old saying about assumptions...

Comment: Re:Shaking my head (Score 1) 142 142

I'm capable of covering all but the most unlikely of situations

And when a not-quite most unlikely situation occurs, you'll be sure to to make good down to your last cent, rather than party like it's 1999 or take a sudden vacation to Central America.

Hint: in the states around me, you are free to self-insure provided that you deposit a rather large sum (mid-five-figures) in cash or bonds with the government. Because sudden parties and vacations tend to happen when one's life savings are about to be handed over to another. Are you fine with that?

And if they happen, I throw up my hands and declare bankruptcy and re-roll the dice. I'm fine with that.

EXACTLY. You're fine with that. The person you creamed doesn't get to discharge their injuries in bankruptcy, and doesn't get to re-roll the dice, but we really don't care about them. It's about you.

Comment: Re:Excellent. Now how about High Fructose Corn Syr (Score 3) 851 851

One could argue HFCS is worse than transfat and it is used everywhere. Come on, get on a roll, FDA!

One could, if they could prove that HFCS should no longer be generally recognized as safe, as was done with trans-fats.

Your minor problem is going to be that natural foods do not contain substantial quantities of trans-fats. It's a quirk of the abiotic hydrogenation process that is used to modify naturally occurring unsaturated oils. Thus the substance is essentially artificial.

That's not the case with HFCS. The process that produces HFCS is artificial, but the very same sugars are in corn, sugarcane, fruits, berries, and various vegetables. You don't object to what the substance is -- you merely object to the form it is being provided in and how much is used.

A little thought experiment: would you have the FDA ban honey as well? It has virtually the same glucose to fructose ratio as HFCS 55 (glucose and fructose are the major sugars present at about 32 and 38% respectively), about 17% water, about 10% other sugars (especially maltose, which is a dimer of glucose), and about 3% other.

If not, then tell me the key difference between the two substances that makes one ban worthy and the other not.

Banning HFCS is simply a poor proxy for regulating that amount of sugars that are incorporated into foods. Yet we don't (currently) permit the FDA to regulate on that basis. If you want to have the argument, make the argument. Don't construct a make believe boogeyman and expect a community of nerds to buy into the myth without question.

Comment: Re:Charges? (Score 1) 535 535

Weird that he was there???

Yes, weird that he was there. Weird that a man in a Stormtrooper costume was in front of an elementary school with no apparent reason to be associated with the school.

As I indicated in the GP post, the loitering charge is the really odd one. I'm not going to invest the time necessary to investigate where he lives, where the school is, where he was going (assuming it to be true), where he was actually located, the time of the 911 response, etc., etc. simply in order to to qualify the weirdness. A guy in a Stormtrooper is automatically weird. Your decision to read weirdness as meaning creepy or nefarious instead of simply unusual and out-of-the-box is your own deal.

Comment: Re:Charges? (Score 4, Informative) 535 535

Sounds like charges that they can bring anyone in on. And that's probably the point.

They can bring anyone in on anything they want. The question is whether the prosecutor has enough to believe that they can bring a successful case.

Disturbing a school:
You need to prove that he intentionally sought to disturb the school. Maybe he did... maybe he didn't. It sounds weird that he was there, but then again "bad judgment" is not the same thing as having an intent to disturb the school.

You need to prove that someone in authority asked him to leave. In most of the US it's not loitering simply because you don't have a good reason to be there. The story doesn't say that he refused any instruction to go, so this is actually the more curious charge of the two to me.

Comment: Re:Surprised? (Score 2) 98 98

The sage of Wikipedia states

The actual size and behavior of floating-point types also vary by implementation. The only guarantee is that long double is not smaller than double, which is not smaller than float. Usually, the 32-bit and 64-bit IEEE 754 binary floating-point formats are used, if supported by hardware.

So the program implementation assumed a behavior that was not guaranteed, and was burned when it used an outside library which was specification compliant but not in the same way as that particular implementation.

A poor workman blames his tools. And in this case I'm not referring to MinGW, which is admirably neutral in its reporting.

Comment: Re:Labour laws (Score 1) 422 422

And abusive troll moderation rears its ugly head.

From TFA:

That's because the laid-off workers sued the company and won just, he says, as Mandriva was breaking even. (The details of the suits, including names of employees involved, are confidential, he told us, and he declined to offer details.)

So... not trolling at all.

Comment: Re:Joy! (Score 2) 54 54

Finally, proof that we are the product.
But if we are the product, can we sue for our share of the payout?

From the FTC's perspective, you're not the product, but your information is a business asset.

Your information would already go along with the business in any change of control or merger -- the privacy policy did not preclude that. And yes, your information has value in that context, just like any customer list, but you do not have any claim upon that value. You gave the business the right to use it in its business.

The FTC's perspective is that your information should not have independent value from the business as a separable asset. They're seeking to substantially enforce the promise in the privacy policy -- that the asset is tied to the business and its operations, and not freely alienable to anyone willing to pay for it.

Since only coprorations are now people and people are not people, we'll all have to form little corporations of course, in order ot get our due.

Forming a corporation won't save you from the consequences of your negotiating skills (or lack thereof).

Comment: Re: 8 years to earn a B.S. in Psychology? (Score 1) 29 29

No, I do not. People have families. People work jobs to pay for undergrad tuition. People transfer between schools. As for your "I have a right to know everything if they ask me for crowdfunding" approach - no. You have the right not to offer funds. The rest of us have the right to deem your request unreasonable given that, again, this was a baseline credential earned 20 years ago. Disclose your professional history for the past 28 years and I'll reconsider.

Comment: Re:8 years to earn a B.S. in Psychology? (Score 1) 29 29

I wonder why it took her so long?

I wonder how this is relevant when it concerns a baseline credential earned 20 years ago and you seemingly have no issue with the MS, MA, and PhD earned from 1996-03, much less her positions at Brown and UC Boulder.

In other words, it's none of your damn business.

Comment: Re:Typo: Digital Rights Management (Score 1) 371 371

The point is that we don't want anyone to _have_ to use DRM.

The user does not _have_ to use DRM. The user is free to download versions of Firefox that implement the capability or not.

DRM is not a capability in the traditional sense. It's not a way for your software to do something. It's a way to prevent the user from using the software as they please, as directed by the content provider.

It certainly is a capability. It's a capability for the user who happens to be a content provider. It's a capability for users who believe that the content provider's directions are permissible. It's merely not a capability for a "once it has been created it immediately becomes mine for any purpose" user. All three stereotypes also run along a spectrum... content providers and users alike may believe that DRM associated with a subscription is fine, but not DRM that locks content to a single, specific hardware device.

You don't want anyone to be _able_ to use DRM through Firefox, whether as a producer or consumer. That's an ends-justify-the-means approach to open culture, not an "open" method of lobbying for "open culture" as a valuable norm. That's also an absolutist view since DRM would be required to impose any restriction, not simply the extreme restrictions that would offend the typical user.

Open culture cannot be said to be "open" if it cannot countenance pragmatists.

Comment: Re:Typo: Digital Rights Management (Score 4, Insightful) 371 371

. It's a sad day for Mozilla, the w3c, the web as a whole, and open culture. At least there's still the iceweasel fork that doesn't come with this...

You say that as if it's the only option.

We also recognize that not everybody wants DRM, so we are also offering a separate Firefox download without the CDM enabled by default for those users who would rather not have the CDM downloaded to their browser on install.

I can only conclude that the issue is not that you don't want to use that capability, it's that you don't want anyone else to be able to use that capability. The contradiction in wanting "open culture" to deny some users options that they desire never crosses your mind, does it?

"In matters of principle, stand like a rock; in matters of taste, swim with the current." -- Thomas Jefferson