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Comment Re:Probably not (Score 1) 74

Your smart phone already listens to everything you say, in case you might say some key word that it needs to react to.

No. No, my phone does not. Does anyone actually run down their battery and keep their phone unlocked and vulnerable to keep some voice-activated app always running?

Newer TVs and other electronic devices are becoming more voice activated.

A pointless gimmick that's a usability fail.

Comment Re:Well, you *can't* trust open-source code (Score 1) 157


On the other hand, many (most?) people are taught or learn programming in the same way or much the same way

Citation needed.

When I was a lad we started programming in BASIC (not "Visual Basic, I mean 10 PRINT "HELLO WORLD" 20 GOTO 10) and moved on to Pascal in high school. The standard language of instruction in universities has gone from C to C++ to Java; most folks today probably pick up Javascript or PHP as their first language.

Comment Re:Half the story (Score 1) 213

I believe trademarks are where corporations should be able to protect characters of a franchise that is still being actively monetized.

Absolutely not. The purpose and justification of trademark is consumer protection, to prevent counterfeit goods. It's to ensure that when you buy a pair of jeans marked "Levis", they're actually made by the Levi Strauss company. The only relationship trademark has with creative works is to disallow you from selling, say, a shoddy Superman t-shirt in a manner that would make the buyer think it was from Warner/DC.

Comment Re:Hmmm. (Score 1) 410

But where do you draw the line?

When it comes to state censorship, to silencing people by government force, there is no "line" to be drawn. It's all wrong, period.

Is it as OK for someone to have a discussion forum where they talk about all the sexual fantasies they have about children, as it is to be criticizing their government? Is it as OK to have a place where people are talking about how blacks and immigrants are awful and how they shouldn't be 'allowed' to live as well as white people, as it is to be discussing what is and isn't good about how TV shows are being written and produced? How about religious extremists promoting violence as a way of spreading their (version of their) 'faith', as opposed to discussion of whatever religious text you care to name?

Yes, yes, and yes, provided that by "OK" we mean "legally OK." I have my own personal opinions about whether various of these topics is socially acceptable, but "socially unacceptable" is not the same as "should be forcibly blocked." Why is that so hard for some some people to grasp?

That doesn't mean I have to let you hold that conversation about disgusting pedophile fantasies in my living room, or that my local bar has to let the KKK rent out their upstairs room for meetings. But on the other hand if I agree to provide a communication service and then start removing content, at best I have a broken service, a defective product.

I don't use reddit, but there seems to be a very simple solution to the problem of subreddits with content you object to: don't read them.

extremists end up being louder than everyone else because that's what extremists do.

"Extremist" is a content-free label. Abolitionists were extremists in the 1830s, and William Llyod Garrison was kind of loud. He was also right.

Comment Re:Do you think it happens only in tech? (Score 1) 273

In this case, "only" is functioning as an adverb. The adverbial phrase "only in tech" modifies the verb "happens".

A synonym here would be "exclusively": "Do you think it happens exclusively in tech?" It might be easier to see the sentence structure there, since only can function as an adjective or conjunction as well as a adverb.

Start with the basic (and uninteresting) sentence "It happens." Assume we know what "It" is. :-) We want to say something about where, when, how, or why it happens, so we need an adverb or an adverbial phrase: "It happens only in tech.".

Then we can convert it into a question: "Does it happen only in tech?" Or I could ask you about your belief about that question: "Do you think it happens only in tech?"

Comment Re:My sympathy (Score 1) 43

Four out of five elderly people given CPR end up dying within days. Many of them with prolonged and intense suffering due to CPR prolonging the inevitable.

We certainly need more thought about end-of-life care, living wills, and do-not-resuscitate orders. But CPR is not the only intervention affected by that.

And in some cases CPR is given when it's not warranted, breaking ribs, collapsing lungs or otherwise causing serious and sometimes fatal damage.

Sometimes, yes, but more rarely than you might think.

If I keel over, please don't resuscitate unless there is at least a 50% chance of long-term success, and less than a 50% chance of causing long-term damage.

Dude, unless you're already in the hospital, whoever sees you go down or trips over your unconscious body does not have your medical history, nor can they predict your course of treatment.

Comment call a wahmbulance (Score 0) 272

Oh, cry me a river. Drone operators no longer have an unlimited right to invade people's privacy and endanger their safety. Sorry dude, but the airspace is common property and it's sensible to regulate its use for the common good. Either that, or we can have drone wars, where people who don't want your drones in the skies fly their own to take them down.

Comment Re:Works for me - whatever that is worth (Score 2, Insightful) 136

Seems like people running mailing lists need to take a look at how spam filters work, rather than mail providers changing anything.

No, you're backwards. It's up to spam filter developers to understand how mailing lists work and not falsely flag legitimate traffic. If your filter breaks a mailing list, your filter is broken.

Comment Re:High fat? (Score 1) 244

Now if we stop talking about mice and start talking about people we can look at what the science has always shown. There are things called diseases of modern culture. As in indigenous people who don't eat like western cultures have low cancer and mental illness rates and no heart attacks.

Except that science has never shown that. Atherosclerosis has been found in mummies (not just from Egypt but also Peru, the southwest America, and the Aleutian Islands), and the idea that modern Inuit have low rates of heart disease was never evidence-based

Fats and proteins don't spike the blood sugar.

But protein does spike insulin.

What science actually shows is what it's always shown: a diet based around whole plant foods, high in fiber and moderate to low in fat and protein, is the most healthful for primates, including those weird bald ones.

Comment Re:Yes, this needs to stop, but... "Help yourself" (Score 1) 130

I don't need a native client for my bank or Twitter or Facebook or Slashdot or anything, for that matter, that does nothing more than save me from opening Chrome and going to a particular URL.

My credit unions' apps let me deposit checks by taking photos of them with my phone. That's not a service available via the website.

I agree with the general point of "the app for accessing your company's website should be my web browser", but in the real world there are reasons to have specific apps.

Comment Re:Exactly. (Score 2) 318

I cannot comprehend this entitled attitude. on cable tv you see ads. in a magazine or newspaper you see ads. before movies you see ads. during movies you see ad placements. so it's not like Netflix is proposing a crazy new concept

I cannot comprehend this apathy about the ongoing invasion of every bit of space and time by attempts at mind control. ("Buy! Buy! Buy!")

Once upon a time you actually could pick up some magazines and see very few ads, or even none at all. There were not ads before movies. Product placement was inconspicuous or non-existent. There was even less ad time on broadcast TV -- one guy estimates that the time spent on commercials more than doubled since the 1950s.

Ads as we know them are memetic toxins. Anyone unconcerned about them is unconcerned about their own mind.

Comment Re:Yes more reliable (Score 1) 101

The idea is that your device runs a calendar app and syncs with Google Calendar. You then get notifications regardless if you are online or outside a coverage area,

And through what magic does that sync occur if you are offline or outside a coverage area?

I'm not foolisbn enough to give an advertizing company my callendar, but I'm pretty sure that Google Clendar uses TCP/IP to sync. Which means you have to have data reception. Which is much less avaiable than SMS.

Comment Re:Camer was owned by the school (Score 5, Informative) 379

The school owned the camera he used. Therefore all work from that camera belongs to the school.

No. It does not work like that. If you borrow my guitar and write a hit song, it's your song, the copyright is yours. If you borrow my camera and take a Pulitzer-winning photo, it's your photo, the copyright is yours. Copyright goes to the creator of a work, not to the owner of any tools incidental to the creation.

"Open the pod bay doors, HAL." -- Dave Bowman, 2001