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Comment Re:Blizzard distributes patches via Bittorrent (Score 4, Funny) 272 272

Yup, grinning at cute girls will really make that BitTorrent traffic spike, let me tell you. This one time I managed to max out my download cap, just from a few gigs of porn, and I'm pretty sure they don't count it if it turns out the chick's a fuggnaut. And since we're just spouting random offtopic anecdotes, yesterday I went past this bakery and they had these donuts - let me tell you they smelled amazing - I smiled at them. Should have bought one. Amazing.

Comment Re:Make sense (Score 4, Interesting) 530 530

How do you know they're not planning to really emulate Apple's "success" and move to proprietary hardware/software and tell all of their "partners" to go pound sand? A walled garden would be next.

They could, but that would be insane. Those "partners" would still be pumping out craploads of hardware and need something that would run on it, finally bringing about the Year of Linux on The Desktop, just as the Mayans predicted. When billion dollar businesses are told to fuck off by their trusted partners they don't just go quietly into the night, they do (possibly spiteful, crazy and dickish) things to try to stay afloat.

Comment Re:But make sure to buy our cloud offering! (Score 4, Insightful) 168 168

Sorry, what? When I write an email or text on my Android the entire text gets sent to Google? Even if I decide not to send it? The issue is that, when using Siri, the full recording is sent back to Apple's servers where they perform processing. This could allow them to do spy stuff with what people falsely assumed was privat einformation, since a lot of people don't realise that anything you tell Siri you also tell Apple HQ.

Now, are Apple doing evil with what Siri sends them? Probably not. but when you're the CIO of a billion dollar tech company you probably don't want to base your company's technological future on "it's probably fine".

Submission + - Harvard Encourages Faculty To Use Open Access Publishing->

DangerFace writes: Exasperated by the rising subscription costs charged by academic publishers, Harvard University has encouraged thousands of faculty members to make their research articles freely available through open access journals and to resign from publications that keep articles behind costly paywalls. A memo from Harvard Library to the university's 2,100 teaching and research staff called for action after warning it could no longer afford the price hikes imposed by many large journal publishers, which cost the library around $3.5m a year. The extraordinary move thrusts one of the world's wealthiest and most prestigious institutions into the centre of an increasingly fraught debate over access to the results of academic research, much of which is funded by the taxpayer. The outcome of Harvard's decision to take on the publishers will be watched closely by major universities around the world and is likely to prompt others to follow suit with similar recommendations.
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Installing Slashcode 1 1

jarrowwx writes: "I want to create a site that is for alternative news sources. I'd like it to be based on the same engine as Slashdot. But when I search for slashcode, I find, and the most recent posting listed is dated October, 2009. Surely, the software that powers Slashdot is not dead...

Anybody care to give me a history lesson on what has happened since 2009, and where I can find the latest and greatest code and instructions?"

Submission + - Apple To Refund iPad In More Countries?->

redletterdave writes: "After the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) won a battle with Apple after alleging the Cupertino-based company was misleading customers about its third-generation iPad, authorities in other countries are now assessing the compatibility of the new iPad with local 4G LTE networks to see if their customers should deserve refunds too. The UK's Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) confirmed on Tuesday that it is investigating complaints of Apple's misleading "4G" claim, while Sweden and Denmark are also reportedly considering investigations, after agencies within both countries received "several complaints" from customers about 4G connectivity. Even though these countries carry broad LTE coverage, the new iPad isn't supported on any of those networks."
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Apple Reveals Plans To Use $100B Warchest->

DangerFace writes: Apple has said it will use its cash to start paying a dividend to shareholders and to buy back some of its shares. It will buy back up to $10bn (£6.3bn) of its own shares starting in the company's next financial year, which begins on 30 September 2012. At the end of last year, Apple revealed it had $97.6bn in cash. It expects to use $45bn over the next three years. It is the first time Apple has declared a dividend since 1995.

"We have used some of our cash to make great investments in our business through increased research and development, acquisitions, new retail store openings, strategic prepayments and capital expenditures in our supply chain, and building out our infrastructure," Apple chief executive Tim Cook said in a statement. "You'll see more of all of these in the future. Even with these investments, we can maintain a war chest for strategic opportunities and have plenty of cash to run our business. So we are going to initiate a dividend and share repurchase programme."

Link to Original Source

Submission + - Press Embargo On NHS Reforms?->

DangerFace writes: Last night the UK's Conservative-led government passed the Health and Social Care Bill by 316 votes to 251. This is a major step towards the largest reform of the NHS since its inception in 1948. (38 degrees has more) However, there is little to no news coverage of this groundbreaking event — BBC News — nothing. The Guardian — nothing. The Daily Fail — nothing. Sky News — nothing. One or two of these sites playing down the issue I can understand, but surely the only way to get this level of silence is some sort of backroom collusion, press embargo, or super injunction?
Link to Original Source

Comment Re:It's 2011, don't open the attachment (Score 1) 202 202

I don't tick that box, and I added an exception to AdBlock for * I still don't see any adverts here, because I won't add a known malware distributor to my NoScript whitelist. I'm not strictly against advertising, but I'm not going to just run any crap coming from anywhere to give away a few pennies a month. I try to subscribe but I won't use PayPal and nothing else comes up on the subscription page. I told them about this, but got no response. So, since they don't seem to want my money, I haven't yet flown a few thousand miles just to shove a wad of cash through the letter box.

Comment Re:People think google are different. (Score 4, Insightful) 408 408

One major difference between Google and facebook is that Google sells your eyeballs to advertisers, facebook sells your information.

Whether you think that makes a large ethical difference is up to you, but the practical implications are significant -- essentially, Google acts as a black box in between advertisers and users, which is a system I massively prefer. Facebook will literally sell your name and address. I think that this is a significant improvement.

Of course, the other point is the question of trust. Can people trust Google? Maybe. I do, but I'm very careful about it, and I believe a lot of other people are too. The moment they start locking down services or locking in users, or the moment I actually find them doing something 'evil' (and no, accidentally leaving Kismet on a default setting does not count) I'm leaving them completely. Facebook, however, I don't trust at all with anything. That's trickier, since I live in a different city from where I grew up and a lot of my friends still live, and frankly facebook is in common usage, but then it's a trade off. I definitely don't put anything on facebook that I wouldn't say on national TV.

Another reason Google is in my good books, at least, is because they look at the long term. They want more people browsing the web as a general business goal, so they develop an awesome browser -- not necessarily to win the browser wars, but to make all browsers better. Then they also make it open source. Then they build driverless cars. Then they provide the best free mapping system in the world. Then they add satellite / overhead imagery to it.

Google might not be perfect, but they're by far the best multinational corporation I've ever come across.


How Zynga's CityVille Drew 70 Million Players In Less Than a Month 101 101

An article at Gamasutra takes an in-depth look at how Zynga's new browser-based social game CityVille managed to accumulate tens of millions of players in the relatively short time since its launch early this month. Quoting: "The Facebook interface induces a high degree of user blindness. It does not do a great job of exposing new games and applications, and lacks a directory or a 'Featured in the App Store' style of editorial (as Apple does for the iPhone), which means that for most developers there are huge problems in getting their games in front of users' eyeballs. With all of the free advertising channels on the platform now constrained or dead, this has meant that the Facebook economy has been acquiring an increasingly Darwinian shape. Where it used to be an egalitarian environment in which any developer could strike it big, over the last year it has become top-heavy with larger developers accruing exponential success, and cutting off oxygen to smaller companies by default."

Comment Re:Tips... (Score 1) 519 519

They get paid well below min. wage. Basically they are paid below poverty to serve you food because they get tips. So your food is cheaper because they get paid crap... we can get people to push they get a proper wage I tip. Usually 15% (it was 10% 15 years ago). Some time more, rarely less

Okay, so you think you should support the system of them getting paid nothing? As I understand it - and please do correct me if I'm wrong - the reason that they get paid below minimum wage is because they get tips, and in order to make it legal to pay below minimum wage their employer has to check the tips they get against their wages. In other words, a restaurant can't say, "We're paying you $1/hour because you get tips." But they can say, "Minimum wage for the shift you just worked comes to $50. Minus $30 tips, here's your $20."

That means that tipping is the same as paying their employer specifically for treating their staff like crap - the staff get no benefit whatsoever. Of course, I may be wrong, in which case you're just supporting a system in which people arbitrarily get paid less than minimum wage because they can rely on handouts.

Then again I live in England where a minimum wage job is enough to live on, and everyone has to be paid it regardless of whether they also get given stuff. Really, I don't see the difference between your system and a system where your boss says, "Hey, I see you got a new shirt for Christmas. How much do you reckon it's worth? OK then, that's coming out of your next paycheck." Or, alternatively, "So, I hear you celebrate Christmas. You get gifts for that? OK then, your wages go down."

"And do you think (fop that I am) that I could be the Scarlet Pumpernickel?" -- Looney Tunes, The Scarlet Pumpernickel (1950, Chuck Jones)