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Comment: Re:Funny, however.. (Score 1) 108

by Firethorn (#48030775) Attached to: Grooveshark Found Guilty of Massive Copyright Infringement

Those things would surely be illegal, and perhaps that is in the evidence somewhere and just didn't make the summary.

Pretty much. It could be that the statements that mentioned copyright violations of something like 'download MP3s of commercial artists!' were more abstract and obfuscated enough to not make a good headline.

Also, balance of evidence. A number of emails along the lines of 'find MP3s of music that the owners WANT to share for free' might of saved their asses. Modern copyright law is automatic, the creator of the work owns the copyright automatically and has to explicitly allow sharing. Ergo statements about 'downloading all the music you can find in order to add it to the sharing' can be assumed to be hitting copyrighted works, because, well, they'd actually need to contact the content owners to get permission outside of relatively few works.

For example, even MP3s of classical music are copyrighted. Sure, the musical score Bach or Beethoven wrote is free of copyright. But the symphony that produced the performance? That's not copyrighted, and the ability to record high fidelity music is so new that all of the 'good' recordings are modern enough to be protected.

Comment: Re: Rebels (Score 1) 441

by Firethorn (#48021569) Attached to: Scientists Seen As Competent But Not Trusted By Americans

Answer this: How many "money grabbing pastors" are there, and how many people trust them?

Not the Op, but consider in a country of somewhat in excess of 300M people, if said 'money grabbing pastors' can get 1% of the population to give them 10% of their income(traditional tithe), at an average of something like $4k per person, that's $12B going to said money grabbers, which while still a really big chunk of change to individuals is still peanuts on a national scale and indicative that the problem isn't actually that big.

Comment: Re:Will this internet of things die already? (Score 1) 103

by Firethorn (#47980933) Attached to: Popular Wi-Fi Thermostat Full of Security Holes

Nobody needs a home thermometer and refrigerator connected to the internet.

Don't know about the refrigerator, and I think you meant thermostat, because a thermometer hooked up to the internet would be darn useful up here. As is many buildings have alarms hooked up to phone lines that notify you if the temperature dips below a set temperature(40-50F, typically).

Comment: Re:Google Stock Split 04/14/2014, 2 Classes of Sha (Score 1) 167

by Firethorn (#47980885) Attached to: Now That It's Private, Dell Targets High-End PCs, Tablets

If a company fails the owners get paid last.

All stock holders are owners by definition, but the way it's generally supposed to go the more say you have in the running of the company the lower on the list for pay out in case of the company being liquidated. Generally employee wages are paid first*, then bond holders, then other debt holders**, followed finally by preferred stock holders then regular stock.

*Often there has to be a bond/insurance that ensures they're paid.
**Secured debt gets the security.

Comment: Re:Not ad hominem (Score 1) 167

by Firethorn (#47973891) Attached to: Anonymous Peer-review Comments May Spark Legal Battle

I expect that this is why he got into trouble - a relevant expert from the hiring university would be able to easily evaluate the merits of the comments.

That was what I figured as well. Whenever somebody sues because of some anonymous comments on a website my default assumption is that it only 'caused harm' because the comments were true, or at least accurate enough.

However, in the USA this is the equivalent of throwing a hissy fit because truth is actually a protection under US law. I know that over in England the rules are somewhat different, truth is not an absolute defense.

For that matter, in many cases the harm has to be deliberate - IE they had to post it KNOWING that it was going to hurt, as opposed to the ultimate purpose of a peer review being to improve your paper.
"Oh crud, a citation for that data got dropped" would probably be a better response than a hissy fit.

Comment: Re:Good. IndieGoGo should do it too (Score 1) 203

by Firethorn (#47973727) Attached to: Kickstarter Lays Down New Rules For When a Project Fails

What decade are you from, out of curiosity?

I span many decades, though I wonder if you're from the future, seeing as how you present figures that are around double that of current mainstream stuff.

Currently, we're pushing ~40% in top end photovoltaics ~35% in midrange/prosumer, lowly consumer stuff bought off Alibaba easily reaches 25%

Let's see:
2014 review says 15% for consumer grade panels.
44.7% is the world record. However, these cells are disallowed because they're all concentrator types - they're designed for use with mirrors and such to feed them 100X+ concentrated sunlight.
21.5% is the world record for consumer grade panels.

After that we had to adjust because they'd be non-optimally placed(flat vs angled, under shade, etc...), where the light has to penetrate through thick and fairly dirty glass*, etc...

blue is far more efficient than red in terms of input power/output

Huh, looks like red LEDs are still more efficient than blue. The reason we use blue LEDs(well, ultraviolet ones), is that you can change blue to red(and the other colors) with a simple phosphor, but not vice versa.

Oh, and Monochromatic efficiencies are more in the 1/3rd range, not 70%. You also have to account for the power conditioning electronics to buffer output between the solar panels(or nighttime power transmission) and the LEDs. They can be highly efficient as well(90%+), but it's still there.

Your math is about 40 years behind.

I'll give you 1. Which was when we examined the issue.

*They found that their 'traction surface' dropped power production by about 15% compared to the bare panel. That would drop a 21.5% efficient panel to 18.3%.

Comment: Re:Good. IndieGoGo should do it too (Score 1) 203

by Firethorn (#47969877) Attached to: Kickstarter Lays Down New Rules For When a Project Fails

Some sort of colored LCD providing a sort of e-inkish surface was indeed one of the things we considered - heck, we even considered moving strips of material to expose the proper color at the proper spot. Thing is, the more systems you stuff in there, the less space for solar panels and the more it costs.

Like my first post - I wish them the best of luck, but we don't see the potential being that high. One of the other problems of the solar roads site was that they massively overstated the maintenance requirements for non-heavily traveled roads.

Comment: Re:Good. IndieGoGo should do it too (Score 1) 203

by Firethorn (#47966387) Attached to: Kickstarter Lays Down New Rules For When a Project Fails

Considering the sun is ~93 lumens per watt and we've got LEDs now pushing 300+ lumens per watt, not very much power, at all. One watt will put any LED brighter than even the glare on the glass.

The problem is that you're not just doing 1 LED when you're making lane markings using LEDs. You're lighting up dozens per hexagon, and the results we got had the power cost of the lane markings drowning out the power gained by the solar panels.

"Lumens per watt" doesn't make much sense when considering whether or not a light will be visible(and not just visible, 'easily visible') because you still have to consider how many watts the sun is putting out. Given solar panels somewhere between 10-15% efficient, you'll need a surface area at least 10 times that of the LED lighting to simply break even.

Comment: Re:Good. IndieGoGo should do it too (Score 1) 203

by Firethorn (#47965399) Attached to: Kickstarter Lays Down New Rules For When a Project Fails

American roads rarely last more than a few decades, unless consistently and constantly maintained.

They are cheap, but I'd also like to point out that the average amount of traffic on a American road would beat even a Roman one to shit within a decade without constant maintenance. Roman roads typically didn't have to deal with the weight we run across ours every day all day.

Solar roadways are an interesting idea, but they're reaching so far that when one of my forums got into it we found enough problems that would need to be solved, ranging from how fast glass actually wears to the question of how much power does it take to make an LED light visible during the day, to how much of the cost of a road is under-surface preparation(lots of it) which wouldn't be saved when you're putting down a solar roadway.

The end result is that we wish them the best of luck, but we don't see a lot of promise in the technology.

Comment: Re:I'm fine with it (Score 1) 185

by Firethorn (#47961705) Attached to: NY Magistrate: Legal Papers Can Be Served Via Facebook

There's a problem with this - I've never heard of this requirement short of you being on a sex offender's list(or on parole).

Of bigger concern is keeping an accurate address on your driver's license, but not everyone has those as well, and getting that updated is always very low priority.

Comment: Re:I'm fine with it (Score 1) 185

by Firethorn (#47959615) Attached to: NY Magistrate: Legal Papers Can Be Served Via Facebook

As Ruir said, 'who says she works'. The IRS really doesn't care as long as it's books balance, and it works on an annual basis. They could get last year's information fairly easily, but that's not the address they're looking for, now is it?

I think you have too much confidence in the abilities of skip-tracers. Plenty are found, yes, but plenty also fall through the cracks. Consider federal fugitives who often aren't found for years. Most are caught quickly, yes, but some manage to hide.

The easiest way to do what she's doing is to simply shack up with a boy-toy and not have your name on any bills. No credit cards that aren't still at the old address, same with the bank account.

For example, from your link on skiptracing:

Often, the job becomes more than mere research since one must often employ methods of social engineering, which involves calling or visiting former neighbors, or other known contacts to ask about the subject, sometimes under false or misleading pretenses.

If she's only communicating with family through facebook and actually has the geolocation features turned off... It'd take a warrant to facebook to get them to give them IP address/location information.

Records that "skiptracers" use may include phone number databases, credit reports (including information provided on a loan application, credit card application, and in other debt collector databases), job application information, criminal background checks, utility bills (electricity, gas, water, sewage, phone, Internet, and cable), social security, disability, and public tax information

Thus my 'not working'(at least above the table, legally), which takes care of job apps, background checks, social security, and such, 'using the old address for bank/credit cards(doable with the internet), and 'living with boy toy' which takes care of the rest.

Comment: Re:I'm fine with it (Score 1) 185

by Firethorn (#47959567) Attached to: NY Magistrate: Legal Papers Can Be Served Via Facebook

And facebook can be more reliable than physical mail? We're going to bank all of this on the reliability of a single third party entity?

I'm going to boil all of this down to 'You appear to have more faith in the USPS than I do'. The USPS is also a third party entity, after all. Process servers are third party entities. Etc...

My mother received a piece of mail literally TWO YEARS after I sent it. It came partially torn, in a plastic bag with an apology letter from them.

There was a bit of a local scandal a few years back where it turned out that a group of process servers were lying about making contact, forging signatures on paperwork.

If it were simply enough to say "we know this account really belongs to this person and that they actively login and use the account", then we wouldn't need certified mail or people to serve a summons in person.

As opposed to a certified letter to an address that may not even be where a person lives anymore?

They tried the other two ways; she was hiding her address ergo they failed at notifying her the latter two ways. The judge made a dispensation in this case, doesn't mean that it'll become a standard method.

Comment: Re:I'm fine with it (Score 1) 185

by Firethorn (#47957991) Attached to: NY Magistrate: Legal Papers Can Be Served Via Facebook

It was explicit in the summary that the account was active and that was part of the decision. As was that the ex was hiding by not leaving a forwarding address to be traditionally served.

Today facebook can be more reliable than physical mail. Plenty of people move, after all, more than those that simply abandon their facebook accounts. I think, at least.

Comment: Re:Old technology (Score 1) 179

by Firethorn (#47957239) Attached to: Washington DC To Return To Automatic Metro Trains

I'm picturing it like driving a car designed for power steering and brakes, with both out. Its even harder than for a car designed without those features to begin with because the car without was designed to work well woithout the systwm. With it they only expect it to be operated that way in an emergency, thus 'close enough' is seen as acceptable.

Porsche: there simply is no substitute. -- Risky Business