Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


Forgot your password?

Comment: HP isn't a computer company. (Score 2) 474

HP doesn't have the tradition of a "Computer Company". They make computer hardware, but that doesn't put them in the same league as Apple, IBM, Microsoft, Intel and Oracle. Same goes for Dell and Lenovo.

Full disclosure, I've purchased 2 HP laptops in the last two years, so I'm not bashing on HP. They made/make the best calculators and they used to make electronic test equipment. Those were rugged (as much as test equipment can be outside Fluke), accurate and high performance. They also used to make the best laser printers you could buy ( at a reasonable cost). Moving into the commodity PC market and selling off their test equipment branch was a huge mistake. They've had some really bad leadership over the years and they seem to keep killing their best products just at the point when it could really make a positive difference for them.

They're not a computer company, they just happen make computer hardware...this month may be something else.

Comment: Maybe you misunderstand my point... (Score 2) 193

I don't think it's 'conspiracy' what the government's doing, they're behaving like every person and corp. Simply using legal and financial tools to get what they want.

1) Telecoms granted immunity.

2) Quest CEO claims retaliation by NSA for refusal (old)

Here's my point in relation to Microsoft: That having won the case against MS, the DOJ had them 100% 'bent over the barrel' as it were. And in exchange for their continued assistance to the NSA, they were granted the 'consent decree' as a sort of 'released on probation', rather than breaking up the company at that time (or imposing other really draconian measures). As with all of the other secret FISC/DOJ agreements, just enter one for MS in relation to this case. MS would certainly have agreed to go along. Besides, monopoly is good for state control and Linux as an alternative would have looked bad to the NSA too. Method, motive, and opportunity.

Look what the facts of the case with the Quest CEO. The loss of the NSA contract (and the related mis-measure of income/profit as a result) directly created the situation he was charged with. I suspect that the government came to him looking for him to go along with the plan too. He didn't want to play ball, and when he tried to cash out and run away...they got him for insider trading. What's conspiracy about that? Method, motive, and opportunity.

Look at the ongoing investigation of Google now too. Not claiming that they're innocent, but DOJ gaining leverage with an 'ongoing investigation' of something or other is just their style. US Government wants into everyone's pants, any time they want too.

People did used to say I'm wearing a 'tin-foil' hat, but it's looking like the 'high fashion statement for 2013' these days.

Comment: MS vs. DOJ settled immediately after 9/11.. Duh... (Score 2) 193

Haven't you people been paying attention?

Microsoft vs. DOJ was settled almost immediately after 9/11, from wikipedia "On November 2, 2001, the DOJ reached an agreement with Microsoft to settle the case". That's just enough time for the dust to settle, and for MS and the DOJ to wrangle a deal over permitting the government "backdoor access" to everything on your computer.

Why do you think the US government permitted a convicted monopolist to continue without any punishment?
The US DOJ had won the case, and like Aaron Schwartz, they were attempting to squeeze everything that's important to them from the convicted parth.

Sure, they were ordered to go along with the consent decree, but that's not a real punishment, like the rest of us were expecting.

Remember those NSA keys that were found in the release of Windows that included debugging symbols?...
They were there in MS Windows even BEFORE 9/11....Look it up here:

Don't you people pay attention?

Comment: Otherwise they may stop using them... (Score 1) 103

This is really too rich for me. The government telling the Microsoft, Google and the mobile telecom providers to get their mobile privacy issues in order?
Pot, meet Kettle...

I think they're realizing that if consumers feel uncomfortable with carrying a GPS tracking device in their pockets, they may stop using them.
Why, consumers may just go back to pay-phones! Which would leave the feds, states and even Chief Wiggum without an unfettered way of getting location data on almost every American.

Too rich, you just can't make this stuff up.

Comment: Re:And in Denver or Seattle? (Score 1) 364

by Dr_Marvin_Monroe (#42492849) Attached to: TSA 'Secured' Metrodome During Recent Football Game

Actually, I don't think they "de-criminalized" it. They didn't actually take any laws "off the books" here in Washington.
What they did do was make it "the lowest priority" offense. For cops, this means that doughnuts are a higher priority. It's still illegal though, and they can make it a "priority" whenever they want to.

Imagine that you flip off to one of the TSA people, now they've got something to add to your charges. Just one more offense they can list at your trial, kinda like a murder suspect also get charged for "reckless discharge of a firearm" or some such. Just add more stuff to the charges wherever possible.

This is also a pretty scary concept too, because EVERYTHING is headed towards illegal, it's just up to the state to determine WHEN and/or IF they want to prosecute you.

Comment: Professional Engineer stamp is the way to go. (Score 4, Informative) 201

Any sort of extra education is great, I encourage everyone to get smarter, but getting your PE stamp would do the best for your career, that's something that NO employer can disregard.

I'm not suggesting that it's "one or the other", I'm suggesting that you use any online or offline education to get a professional credential that's recognized by states or professional societies. For the ME, it's getting your PE stamp. Like a lawyer passing the bar or a doctor passing their boards, the PE is something that no employer can ignore.

At one equipment manufacturer that I worked for, only a couple of the engineers had their PE, and they were usually moved up to "senior engineer" or "vice-president of engineering" pretty quickly, the rest of us were kept down and encouraged not to get too uppity...

Comment: Re:This is not a violation of the GPL... (Score 2, Interesting) 374

First, we have not specified which GPL version is applicable, or if there are specific exemptions to it. Here is the applicable section under GPLv1:

"Source code for a work means the preferred form of the work for making
modifications to it. For an executable file, complete source code means
all the source code for all modules it contains; but, as a special
exception, it need not include source code for modules which are standard
libraries that accompany the operating system on which the executable
file runs, or for standard header files or definitions files that
accompany that operating system."

Nothing there about build scripts or tools to build.... Let's take a look at GPLv3 (section 1):

"The “Corresponding Source” for a work in object code form means all the source code needed to generate, install, and (for an executable work) run the object code and to modify the work, including scripts to control those activities. However, it does not include the work's System Libraries, or general-purpose tools or generally available free programs which are used unmodified in performing those activities but which are not part of the work. For example, Corresponding Source includes interface definition files associated with source files for the work, and the source code for shared libraries and dynamically linked subprograms that the work is specifically designed to require, such as by intimate data communication or control flow between those subprograms and other parts of the work."

I see the section regarding build scripts, but embedded devices often do not include the ability to build on the device itself, presenting a big difference from the desktop world where you would typically config, build, install all from source. I still think that simply including the settings/defines/prerequisites would suffice. Note that the section above also specifically excludes general purpose tools. Since installation is often accomplished either through external flashing device or embedded flash utility (general purpose tool), these would be excluded.

Yeah, I've read the GPL. I'm not sure I like where things are going in v2 and v3. On the embedded devices that I work with (for instance FreeRTOS), the licenses are GPLv1 for the overall OS and tasking system. They also include a specific exemption for custom tasks/routines which doesn't require you to release unless you change the OS.

Ultimately, it boils out to defining which device, which specific license and which specific files are involved. None of that's been done, so to assume the most radicalized position here doesn't make sense.

Comment: Re:No, they're just non compliant (Score 1) 374

No, I disagree. The section "However, this does not include the work's System Libraries, or general-purpose tools..."

I read this as you must include the defines that you used to build it, but not the build script or firmware loader utilities that you used to put it on the device. To point out, the GPLv3 is the strictest, GPL1 and GPL2 are not as strict.

Not a violation here.

Comment: This is not a violation of the GPL... (Score 0) 374

Sorry to rain on the "GPL violation parade", but this really isn't a violation. The GPL covers the source code only, that's what the banner above the code indicates. It doesn't stretch to everything that's required to build a duplicate product. These companies are under no obligation to release their build environment, scripts, custom firmware utilities or whatever unless they contain GPL code AND they're releasing the binaries out into the public. Private build tools don't count. Doesn't matter if it makes your source useless, or you unable to build a new image. Nobody ever promised that you would be able to build some replacement code and drop it into the device. Indeed, there are reasons where companies may NOT want you do to that (think product liability), even if they do release the source code that they originally built from.

I'm a great supporter of GPL, but folks here are trying to stretch the GPL into something it's not. If what you propose is true, I should be releasing the source and binaries to Notepad because I used it edit some of my files. I would also be required to release my build scripts even if they're owned by another company, and the firmware loader that I used to load up the image into the device.

Perhaps if you worked with the companies in question without crying wolf over some GPL violation that isn't, they may actually help you more. Here's a suggestion: offer to build them a new script based on public tools...And I mean really "go the distance" with them, using something public like Ant. Help them work through the rough edges and show them that you can provide a "win-win" situation where they can actually trust you. They may not bite, but then again, they may... And you've helped show good faith rather than calling in the lawyers.

We warn the reader in advance that the proof presented here depends on a clever but highly unmotivated trick. -- Howard Anton, "Elementary Linear Algebra"