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Comment: Re:Possibly Worse Than That (Score 1) 214

by Em Adespoton (#46784333) Attached to: Click Like? You May Have Given Up the Right To Sue

One benefit to having an with a card is that all the aggregated purchase info that normally goes to card owners (not cardholders) would go to -- who could then use it to police companies abiding by the EULA and automatically cut them off from all purchases should they void the contract.

Comment: Re:Possibly Worse Than That (Score 5, Interesting) 214

by Em Adespoton (#46783415) Attached to: Click Like? You May Have Given Up the Right To Sue

This is actually a really good idea -- someone should create the OpenEULA -- a license agreement that individuals can sign on to, that indicates what conditions apply when a vendor accepts their payment. An organization that hosts the OpenEULA could even do things like get a credit card with the logo and references to the agreement on it, to make it completely legit (if the vendor accepts the card, they accept the liability should they breach the card's contract).

Anyone up for kicking this off?

Comment: Re:Ghandi said... (Score 5, Insightful) 349

by Em Adespoton (#46782911) Attached to: Mercedes Pooh-Poohs Tesla, Says It Has "Limited Potential"

"First They ignore you, Then they laugh at you, Then they fight you, Then you win."

I think this looks a bit like Mercedes laughing at Tesla...

These days the big players know about Ghandi's saying, and attempt to do an end run around it:

First they ignore you in public, fight you in private, and spend millions on lobbyists to prevent you from getting off the ground.
Then they start suing for patent infringement/Trade infringement/whatever and possibly attempt to buy you out and bury your technology.
If you survive, then you win. For the past 60 years, nobody's really got this far in the US, other than Japanese and Korean automakers, who played by the rules and became just like the US automakers.

Comment: Re:Better leave now (Score 5, Interesting) 221

by Em Adespoton (#46781629) Attached to: Kepler-186f: Most 'Earth-Like' Alien World Discovered

I know there has to be a book about that, but it's slipped my mind.

The whole thing of "first wave" colonists who spend generations getting there, and when they do... they find that the third wave colonists have been there for a few generations already, and all the planets habitable by them and their archaic technology are already taken.

Comment: Timothy, please edit before posting... (Score 1) 52

by Em Adespoton (#46780111) Attached to: The Dismal State of SATCOM Security

"Satellite Communications (SATCOM) play a vital role in the global telecommunications system, but the security of the devices used leaves much to be desired. The list of security weaknesses IOActive found while analyzing and reverse-engineering firmware used on the most widely deployed Inmarsat and Iridium SATCOM terminals includes not only design flaws, but also device features that attackers could leverage. The uncovered vulnerabilities include multiple backdoors, hardcoded credentials, undocumented and/or insecure protocols, and weak encryption algorithms. These vulnerabilities allow remote, unauthenticated attackers to compromise the affected products. In certain cases no user interaction is required to exploit the vulnerability; sending a simple SMS or specially crafted message from one ship to another ship would be enough to compromise some of the SATCOM systems."

Took 30 seconds, and makes the summary actually make sense.

Comment: Re:its called lazy ass parenting. (Score 1) 352

by Em Adespoton (#46775309) Attached to: Kids Can Swipe a Screen But Can't Use LEGOs

With that I'll agree. I still remember when my then 3-year-old was visiting a lego store, and surprised the local builder with his technique for attaching plates at angles to build complex shapes -- the guy (whose job it was to build things out of lego) had never seen that before. That's not to say that learning about how modified physics models affect trajectory isn't useful, but it's always good to get a grip on the physics model we interact with ourselves first.

Comment: Re:Matches. (Score 1) 352

by Em Adespoton (#46775137) Attached to: Kids Can Swipe a Screen But Can't Use LEGOs

What happened to playing with matches?

The problem is that it's all the frickin' strike-on-box junk nowadays. Good old fashioned strike-anywhere matches are getting harder to find. You have to dig deep through grandma's junk drawer to find a box, and then you still have to sneak them out to the garage to see which of grandpa's mysterious cans of fluids are the most flammable.

Why play with matches? Just give the kid a flint and let them experiment....

Comment: Re:If I have kids... (Score 2) 352

by Em Adespoton (#46775103) Attached to: Kids Can Swipe a Screen But Can't Use LEGOs

I thought that, until I had a kid.

The problem is once they're about a year old, there's nothing to do with them. They can't talk, they aren't old enough to understand the concept of playing with someone else...all they can really do is run around and bang into stuff.

By the time they're 6 months old, you can start teaching sign language; by the time they're 1, they'll have a sign vocabulary of about 20 - 30 words, and be starting to talk, using signs to clarify what those talk-like sounds mean. When my kids were 1-2, I had a blast with them; we played games, danced to music, talked about the shapes of clouds, etc. And then, since they were still young, they got their afternoon nap and I had a chance to go and do other things. While they couldn't understand the concept of playing with someone else, they had no problems playing with someone who was interested in doing what they found interesting (which was often getting said person to build a tower of blocks so they could knock it over, or grabbing puppets off of people's hands and throwing them across the room).

And yes; both my kids figured out how to use a touchscreen by 18 months too... we learned to keep the locks on and keep the devices out of reach except for under supervised use for limited time.

It might be too late for you now, but I'd highly recommend looking up baby sign language; while your kid doesn't have the muscular dexterity to talk to you clearly, their mind is still full of interesting thoughts that they just don't know how to communicate.

Comment: Re:most lego's are a rip off (Score 1) 352

by Em Adespoton (#46774975) Attached to: Kids Can Swipe a Screen But Can't Use LEGOs

It still bugs me that there are a few places where they could have designed geometries that would be "legal" connection locations, but didn't -- like the interior of modern wheel hubs, the slots in modern antenna bases, etc. But the tolerances are quite simply amazing... just look at Megablocks for someone who tried to duplicate it and didn't quite get there.

Comment: Re:most lego's are a rip off (Score 1) 352

by Em Adespoton (#46774747) Attached to: Kids Can Swipe a Screen But Can't Use LEGOs

The kits that used to be just a random collection of bricks are a lot harder to find today. Head over to Toys-R-Us and almost all of it (other than big blox things for toddlers) are specialized kits. Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Star Wars, etc. The lego kits we had in the 70s or 80s just aren't common at local stores.

If you're buying Lego from Toys-R-Us, you're doing it wrong.

Let me introduce you to -- you can even order the pieces on your tablet.

The older lego kits are still there. You can get Educational Lego (which is the basic bricks), Space Lego is now Star Wars Lego (same stuff, just rebranded with some star wars specific pieces added), medieval Lego still exists, although they've changed the coats of arms, and Lego City still exists and is growing in parts selection.

And then, of course, there's and

After that, find your local Lego store, and get your missing pieces by hitting the pick-a-brick wall from time to time to get the pieces when they come available at a discount (you fill a slurpee-sized cup with whatever you want for a fixed price).

Comment: Re:Relevant Skills (Score 1) 352

by Em Adespoton (#46774665) Attached to: Kids Can Swipe a Screen But Can't Use LEGOs

The issue is not the building blocks themselves, but the serious lack of coordination skills on the part of the children.

If you can't get a couple of blocks to snap together, how are you going to deal with tying your shoes?

I spent the better part of my kids' preschool years teaching them things like how to tie shoes, using a laceboard. Only problem is, they've never owned a pair of shoes that they've had to lace up. Shoes, ski bindings, ice skates/rollerblades etc... they all come without laces now. I doubt my kids remember how to lace/tie a shoe these days -- eventually they'll probably have to learn again, but maybe not. Laces might just die out except as an oddity; kind of like they have with dresses, pants, and other clothing.

For that matter, most people don't know how to use cuff links anymore either.

And it's not just lack of coordination; these kids know how to swipe a touch screen to pixel accuracy, so their small motor skills are definitely there; it's their tension/pressure skills that are lacking. As such, if they ever found a pair of laceup shoes, they'd probably have no difficulty tying them as instructed by their tablet's "101 knots" app.

Shortest distance between two jokes = A straight line