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Comment Re:GOOD GRIEF! (Score 2) 219

Not only are you flushing your money down the toilet, but getting all those empty bottles out of our waste stream would be a great benefit for all of us.

I'm rich enough that I only fill my toilet tanks with the finest imported bottled water. It's only the best for my effluence!


Comment Re:Brave polling, but in real life? (Score 2) 41

It is interesting to see the current results with over 40% in "Sorry I can't help, but I just can't recall any ..." but I expect most of these people will not realize how much pressure you may get from legal authorities to release your password. Chances are most of you would crack after you have legal authorities pressing you. Why? because you don't need to be criminally prosecuted for your life to be made miserable. Especially if you don't have anything incriminating, it will be easier to give the password show that you don't have anything and just go on and change your password. Now this isn't fair and we should have legal protection against officials for even asking the question, but real life, if you are going to stand up for your rights, there will be consequences you will have to face. If you have the bravery to do this, good for you. But in reality most of us do not have the bravery that we think we do in such a poll.

That depends on how you assign passwords in the first place. Myself, I've hit a point now where nearly all of my passwords are uniquely auto-generated, and dumped into my keychain. I never even see them directly -- the process is pretty much automated. I didn't generate them, thus I don't know them.

Thus, if for example I were travelling and a government official or someone in a dark alley wanted to know my Facebook password, I can't help them. I don't know it. They interrogate me or hit me over the head all day and night long, and they aren't going to get anything. This is why, when I travel to the US, I don't take my keychain with me.

Now local authorities who can force me to sit down at one of my primary computers to unlock the keychain are a different story, and not one I could do a whole lot about. At a minimum, they could certainly compel the keychain password out of me and do it themselves. The key (no pun intended), however, is they need the keychain in the first place to do this.


Comment Re:Brave polling, but in real life? (Score 1) 41

Well, it depends on what passwords. Most passwords, well they can go to my webmail provider or bank or whatever and gain access regardless, most people at customs just want to know you haven't modded it to be a bomb so in reality I'm probably not going to refuse them but they're also not going to get access to anything I really want to keep secret. If you can avoid it then it's better to make them think they "won" rather than pick a fight, it's a fairly decent tactic against assholes of all shapes and sizes. Life's too short as it is so I'd rather just get on with it, even if I'm not really doing the right thing.

Comment Re:Great Flood (Score 1) 47

As is the idea that he was 950 years old when he died. Also totally believable.

Well, we have reason to believe some trees are over 5000 years old so if you believe in the creation myth and that Adam and Eve were created by divine touch that diminished over generations that is actually one of the less incredible parts. That we don't live longer is probably a compromise between reproductive age and retaining experience and knowledge between generations as giving birth to a new healthy generation might be more evolutionary "fit" than growing longer life spans, not any true kind of hard limit. Having seen how long we have and haven't gotten in medicine I don't think we'll see it in my lifetime but within the next few hundred years of science I think a thousand year life span is possible. Which doesn't mean that I think ancient people of the past lived that long, but still far more in the realm of the possible than some of the other stuff.

Comment Re:Airstrikes on population centers (Score 1) 290

Note, by the by, that helping Assad against ISIS allows Assad to use more of his own troops against, say, the Kurds, who are our nominal allies in the region.

I might be wrong, but my impression was that Assad's strongholds were in the west/southwest and the Kurds in the north with ISIS in between so they don't really have any common border to fight on. It's the other rebel groups in Syria that are taking the piss with Assad's forces on one side and ISIS on the other. And now possibly Russian death from above, they must start to feel somebody up there hates them...

Comment Re:What kind of dumbass company... (Score 1) 110

Really? Where on earth do you live? I'm not sure anyone in this country still offers two-year contracts. Most people are either on pre-pay or one month rolling contracts. 18 months is about the longest, and they're rarely much cheaper than the one-month version, so there's little incentive to sign up for them (especially given that you're likely to get a better deal in six months, so being locked in for 18 months doesn't make sense even if it is cheaper at the start).

Comment Professional event organizer abuses Pokemon IP (Score 1) 188

That would be a more appropriate headline. The $2 admission their company charges is basically the cover charge to get into a party with sale of alcoholic beverages. Does this sound like your typical fan gathering?:

Defendants boast that the "5th Annual Unofficial Pokemon PAX Kickoff Party" will feature among other things, "Pokemon themed shots and drinks - Smash Bros. Tournament with cash prize - Dancing - Giveaways - Cosplay Contest and more," and an "AMAZIN POKEMON MASHUP."

This sounds like a typical commercial "theme night" that bars and clubs might have, only instead of using a generic unprotected theme like Halloween they made a Pokemon party. Not surprised their lawyers got angry, They managed to put a very good media spin on it though, clearly they as event organizers know how to get media attention and manipulate it. I hope they get to pay every dollar.

Comment Re:lesson learned (Score 1) 126

I learned to always wait for the .1 some time ago. 10.4 had a really nasty bug where, if you used File Vault (home directories were encrypted disk images), everything went fine. You could continue using the system and there were no problems. Until after the first reboot (which is something that typically happens less than once a month). At which point, the OS would be unable to mount your home directory and would give you a new, empty, one. The encrypted disk image containing your home directory was completely unusable. It later transpired that 10.3 could still mount it, so if you had an old bootable image around you could restore the data, but it caused a lot of pain. Apparently no one on Apple's QA team was using File Vault...

Comment Re:Not just MS Office (Score 1) 126

and the user has no way to "jailbreak" their Mac to allow them anyway. (That's not entirely true, there is still a method to disable this new iOS-style lockdown, but it involves booting off El Capitan install media. Which Apple doesn't distribute.)

Bullshit. Boot into recovery mode (from the recovery partition that the installer creates by default) and disable System Integrity Protection, and it's gone.

Comment Re:Genuine Quality (Score 1) 126

I'm not sure about that. I have Keynote and PowerPoint installed (and OpenOffice and LibreOffice). For lectures, I still prefer Beamer (including syntax highlighted code snippets in anything else is painful), but Keynote has nothing like the SmartArt feature of PowerPoint, which makes drawing figures a lot easier. It also doesn't have as useful guides and makes it harder to produce useful templates. These days, I generally use PowerPoint for short presentations (though for some things I find the results of Sozi much more effective than anything else for a lot of things. It's still very new and unpolished though).

Comment Re:Repeat Business, every 2-3 years? (Score 1) 117

Old Apple customers aren't a drain on Apple's financials, even in between the times they're buying new shiny Apple products, but that's Apple.

The difference between Apple and Motorola is that Apple owns the app store that they ship on their devices, Motorola ships the Google one. If someone publishes an app that needs the latest OS, then Apple has an incentive to ensure that it runs on the widest possible set of devices so that they can take their 30% cut of the sale price. If Motorola ensures that the app can run on all of their devices, then all that they're doing is adding to Google's profits.

This is why Amazon and Samsung include their own app stores. Eventually Android manufacturers will realise that they're in a low-margin business where all of the profits go to Google.

Comment Re:That was then, this is now (Score 2) 117

Right. In the UK, the sale of goods act (which was strengthened last week and extended to cover downloads and a few other things) permits you to return a product as not suitable for the purpose for which sold. That means that not doing anything promised in the ads is grounds for a full refund. Just mentioning the relevant law on a call to their support line was enough for Apple to courier a new battery out to me (which arrived at 9am the next morning) for a 3.5-year-old (our of warranty) MacBook Pro, because it was only holding 20% of its rated maximum charge and the discharge counter was significantly below the 300 charge cycles that their support pages claimed.

If someone buys a phone based on the promise of long-term support, but doesn't receive it, then they are entitled to a full refund from the seller, who is then entitled to a full refund from the manufacturer (and less likely to keep selling phones from a manufacturer if they get too many returns). I'd slightly disagree with this claim though:

Which is why consumer protection legislation exists; so corporations have more responsibility than profit mongering.

Corporations are expected to continue profit mongering, the goal of consumer protection legislation is to align incentives so that failing to take responsibility hurts the profits more than taking responsibility. Having to issue individual refunds to every Moto E customer would cost a lot more than back-porting security fixes and pushing out updates. Especially when you include the accompanying news articles.

Comment Re:What kind of dumbass company... (Score 4, Interesting) 110

Mobile phone vendors make their money selling new phones. You want a new Android, get a new phone.

Sure, but the new phone I get will be from a vendor that I can trust to support it for its lifetime. I may upgrade my phone after 2-3 years, but I'll probably hand the old one off to someone else or use it as a spare. If the phone becomes useless after 1 year, then I'll factor that in when I calculate the value of the phone - if I can amortise the cost over 4 years rather than 2, then the cost of the phone is not as good.

Your contract will be up in 2 years

What kind of idiot signs a 2-year phone contract in 2015?

Dinosaurs aren't extinct. They've just learned to hide in the trees.