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Comment: Re:The Future! (Score 1) 261

by Kjella (#47812183) Attached to: You Got Your Windows In My Linux

If Apple or Microsoft decided they want some polorizing system like Systemd to be the new hotness in their OS offerings there's literally fuck all we could do about it.

Would that be "fuck all" as in "buy something else", "don't buy at all" or "insist on the old version"? Tanking sales tend to have a very correcting effect on for-profit companies, assuming there's competition to speak of. Sure, I can't decide what that company will do but I can't decide what that OSS project will do either and while I can theoretically fork and maintain my own version it's not really a practical possibility 99.9% of the time. If there happens to be enough people dissatisfied with the direction it's taking to make a fork that's fortunate for me but really outside my control too.

I've been watching Gnome/KDE trying to battle Windows now for the last 15 years or so and making so little progress YotLD has become the running joke around here ever since Duke Nuke'm Forever shipped. Then I look at Android which is more cathedral than bazaar and it's gone from nothing to 85% world wide market share in 6 years. And the absolutely greatest success the Linux kernel is run like anything but a bazaar, lieutenants are from military hierarchy and it has one general on top - or benevolent dictator for life if that sounds better. Sometimes picking one direction - even if it's not the absolutely best one - beats taking no direction or pulling in ten different directions. Heresy, I know.

Comment: Edit much? (Score 2) 261

by Yaztromo (#47812079) Attached to: You Got Your Windows In My Linux

"Although there are those who think the systems debate has been decided in favour of systems, the exceedingly loud protests on message boards, forums, and the posts I wrote over the past two weeks would indicate otherwise.

"Although there are those who think bacon is tasty, a loud protests I've posted recently on message boards, forums, and here on /. over the past two weeks would indicate otherwise."

(Yeah, I've been here long enough to know that nobody at /. does any actual editing. Still, can I make fun of the submitter for making it sound like (s)he's the one who is going around and posting all the loud protests, and then trying to make it seem like some sort of movement?)


Comment: Re:Manipulated by apple (Score -1) 119

by Yaztromo (#47811959) Attached to: Apple Reveals the Most Common Reasons That It Rejects Apps

Well that sounds truthy, but I don't buy it especially since you're obviously a Mac nut (your email is I'm hitting 40 and my big fingers and crappy eyes have a tough time navigating my 4.3" screen so the almost 6" my Note 3 has, is an outstanding upgrade. Could the possibility be that people want more phone choices than one? Nah, must be because droids are that shitty.

I have at least seven different e-mail addresses on different domains, including Does that also qualify me to be a Google nut?

Android phones (particularly on the high end) are big for exactly the reasons I described. They were big because of technical issues making them small. But if as a by-product that means a phone that works for the fat-fingered four-eyed brigade, well, I have no problems with that. But it's somewhat silly to be overly proud of the fact that you carry around a large phone, when the reasons why it's large are due to technical limitations for it being small. That would be akin to claiming your portable record player is way superior to an iPod because it's bigger. This is still a technology site, isn't it? (I know -- hard to tell sometimes these days).

Oh, and FWIW, I don't own or carry a phone of any kind, so I don't have a horse in the race either way. I'm glad you found the right phone for you, but I wouldn't go around bragging about your phone being generally better just because it's bigger, particularly when the truth of the matter is it's primarily bigger as it requires more hardware to overcome software issues.


Comment: Re:Put it this way (Score 1) 430

Sure he can. He just assumes that the West will never call him on it, or that if they do it'll be a very, very clear line like the Cuban missile crisis or when Hitler invaded Poland. He could probably nuke Kiev and occupy Ukraine and I still don't think NATO would come out and declare war on their own against the second biggest nuclear force on the planet. Don't forget that it's only a defense alliance, you can't invoke it unless a member state is under attack so there'd have to be a long and ugly political process.

Besides, even though Russia is significantly weakened compared to the Cold War when they had the Soviet Union and the East Bloc I'm fairly sure China would not like a US-led invasion party occupying Russia. If they use "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" logic they might throw their support behind Russia and then we'd all be in very deep shit. Just like WWI spiraled out of control there's really no telling how WWIII might turn out, you can't reliably estimate the cost. And people rarely mean "must be stopped at all costs".

Godwin be damned, this comparison is relevant. I think Crimea is Hitler's Sudetenland. Ukraine would be Hitler's Czechoslovakia. If he's stupid enough to touch a NATO country, that will be his Poland and ultimately his demise. Does he know when to back down? Khrushchev did, though he cut it close. Putin might too, at least the world might hope so. But we won't really know until we really draw the line and say so far, but no further. And I have the impression Ukraine is going to get fucked over before we draw that line.

Comment: Re:Why is this a military thing? (Score 1) 31

by Kjella (#47811131) Attached to: NATO Set To Ratify Joint Defense For Cyberattacks

If you're being shot at by a nutcase, you call the cops. If you're being shot at by an invading army, you call the military. If you're being hacked by script kiddies, you call the cops. If you're being hacked by a foreign government, you call the military. If Iran had the military muscle I would say an attack like Stuxnet is "casus belli" for declaring war. This is NATO expanding its defence treaty to include cyber attacks, launching such attacks against one member nation is like attacking all of them. And I think all nations have some form of private-government cooperation to secure critical infrastructure, whether that's physical or digital I don't see makes the big difference. You might argue it shouldn't be hooked up to the Internet, but totally isolated networks are extremely inconvenient.

Comment: Re:passwords are only half of a login (Score 1) 306

by StikyPad (#47810409) Attached to: Reported iCloud Hack Leaks Hundreds of Private Celebrity Photos

I'm not sure whether you didn't read what I wrote, or didn't understand it. In the first case, here it is again:

Obscurity isn't *absolute* security, but it is a useful layer to have.

In the second case, that's about as clear as I can be, so you're on your own.

Comment: Re:Impossible (Score 1) 152

by Kjella (#47810101) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: the State of Free Video Editing Tools?

Free software hates patents and most modern camcorders use H.264, hence a free video editing tool is impossible. Or has Mozilla been bullshitting us all this time about H.264 support in HTML5?

Practically, all you need to do is install a non-crippled copy of ffmpeg or x264 because if you can transcode a video - that is, decode and encode it again - you can edit a video. Whether using those codecs without a patent license is legal depends on your jurisdiction, but the editing software doesn't have to deal with that as it could just use the system codecs. By default you would have Theora and H.264 would either come with your distro or be one command away. Mozilla could have done that, but they refused because they wanted HTML5 video to work out of the box, everywhere. That's not possible, but that's no excuse for why there aren't any good free video editors.

Comment: Re:Manipulated by apple (Score -1) 119

by Yaztromo (#47810007) Attached to: Apple Reveals the Most Common Reasons That It Rejects Apps

Apple PR again. In light of good press from Microsoft and android simply having more apps. IOS is falling behind in both quality and quantity. Posted from a 5.5" phone

Let's try to remember for a moment why Andriod phones were bigger in the first place.

Andriod apps written against Davlik are garbage collected, however the garbage collection process on a phone with the typical quantity of phone memory requires a) frequent collection runs, and b) causes pauses. In order to alleviate this effect, Andriod device manufacturers started popping multi-core CPUs into their devices, simply to be able to handle garbage collection in the background, and make their devices appear closer to real-time performance and reduce UI "hiccoughs". Particularly early versions of these processors were more power hungry, requiring a larger battery to meet the same per-charge runtime as the iPhone. This required a larger overall package.

As such, the Andriod phones aren't larger because larger is better. They're larger because they couldn't compete with the iPhone in terms of performance or battery life if they were the same size.

Keep that in mind the next time you want to brag about your giant phone :).


Comment: Re:What they don't tell you (Score 1) 413

by bluefoxlucid (#47809707) Attached to: Low-Carb Diet Trumps Low-Fat Diet In Major New Study

I wouldn't call that causation though. It's evidence, for sure; but a lot of other things have changed over the years, greatly confounding the link between the USDA recommendations and the increase in obesity.

Controlled evidence that starch-heavy diets do, in fact, produce large health consequences compared to fat-heavy diets should cause us to re-examine the food pyramid and its derivatives, such as the Vacant Lady's MyPlate.


Comment: Re:Uncompetitive? (Score 1) 231

by bluefoxlucid (#47809037) Attached to: Uber Now Blocked All Over Germany

- no insurance in case of accidents (insurance for person transport costs about 10x what a normal car owner pays for his car alone)

Actually, they have insurance, either commercial insurance held by the driver or a primary $1M liability and $1M uninsured motorist bodily injury policy provided by Uber itself.

- no rigorous technical car checks as they are required for cabs

They're as checked-out as any other car, i.e. the state puts them through a 2 year safety inspection on re-registration. My state doesn't do that; as I drive, I am faced with other drivers whose brakes or steering may spontaneously fail, causing them to veer into my car. The risk of me personally driving is roughly similar to the risk of riding with an un-inspected Uber driver.

- no transport obligation (a cab here HAS to transport you, even if you just want to go around the corner) - no reliable costs (cabs here cost the same all the time, no matter whether it's an early morning in march or New Year's eve)

That's part of business. Maybe the driver decides he wants to reject your request. You get whatever driver accepts for the fee you accept, or you call a chartered cab. Make those decisions on your own; you're free to reject the terms and charter a yellow cab.

- no proper filing of taxes

Seriously? Costs are centrally logged. There is an income audit trail. This is an IRS matter.

- no right for the drivers to form a workers council, therefore dumping payment is to be expected - no health insurance, no social insurance, no pension payments for the drivers ...shall I continue?

When you start a small business, you have to cover your own health and life insurance, as well as your own retirement; that money comes out of your income, which is now the income of the business. A start-up is a very personal part of your life, and its income reflects your income on a personal level--even though you can isolate them on a legal level. All of these insurances and benefits you're used to as an employee become your own responsibility.

Uber drivers have a much smaller chance of hitting it big with their Uber business model. That said, they are fully aware that Uber gives them no pension and no health insurance; however, it covers the cost of commercial insurance when they carry passengers, and it's a non-scheduled system where they can become active on a whim. It's a low barrier to entry for a second job or a job between jobs, and the conditions appeal to those who chose to use Uber to facilitate the sale of their services.

Uber isn't abusing its employees; they are providing subcontracted taxi drivers the ability to clock in and clock out at the touch of a button on their phone, anywhere they are, and to select their fare and their passengers at will. They are providing much more workplace freedom with reduction of other workplace benefits; if this model doesn't appeal, you can put in an application to Yellow Cab.

Comment: Re:Good. How is uber any different... (Score 1) 231

by bluefoxlucid (#47808901) Attached to: Uber Now Blocked All Over Germany

Well, for one, Uber has about 10 times as much insurance coverage as a taxi--a million dollars, instead of $25,000 to $100,000. Slugging and hitching have Guest PIP at $5000.

Uber also has traceability. Every Uber charter has passenger, driver, and time centrally logged. Passengers can comment on drivers, and drivers can comment on passengers. There's a rating system. A rapist will expose themselves to a hard evidence chain establishing where they were and that they were with the accuser, as well as a rating of "1 Star, Driver raped me, would not ride again".

Comment: Re:Habeas corpus (Score 2) 404

by bluefoxlucid (#47808853) Attached to: In Maryland, a Soviet-Style Punishment For a Novelist

WE ALL HAVE STANDING! I am living in this state, what the fuck? If the police come to disappear me for writing a book or reading some novel they don't like or whatever, I will send bodies back. You can imagine the shitstorm this will start and how it will affect my quality-of-life.

Do you know how many courts have ruled it self-defense to react to the police with lethal force if they try to arrest you wrongfully? In America we have dozens of these cases at state and federal levels, establishing clearly that the police may not cite you for a crime for violently resisting an illegal arrest; and that you can intervene and free a person from an illegal arrest even if the person being arrested is not himself resisting. This extends to the use of excessive force, especially dangerous force, in the course of a legal arrest.

That means if you see the police beating someone and you run up with a baseball bat and drive them off--some seriously injured--the courts have decided that you were assisting a civilian being assaulted, as the police were using unnecessary and excessive force and jeopardizing life and limb of the suspect (even if he IS guilty of a crime!), and thus you are not guilty of a crime!

Now think about this: Clash with the police, or disappear away with the police? You know this isn't going to end well either way, even given the above--the police might shoot you anyway, or the courts might ignore precedent, or they might weave some imaginative fantasy to use your legal self-defense as an example of how dangerous and unstable you were and thus how they were justified in coming to arrest you in the first place! Which one is going to be less shitty? Now consider that accepting this behavior in society subjects you to this Morton's fork. How does every single person in America *not* have standing in legal action against the police here?

Comment: Re:There might be more to this story (Score 2) 404

by bluefoxlucid (#47808747) Attached to: In Maryland, a Soviet-Style Punishment For a Novelist

Yes, that seems fair. If you are in court for child sexual crimes telling the judge you stuck your penis up some girl's ass, and they put you in prison ... you should probably blame yourself for not mentioning that it was a couple weeks ago, in July, a month after she turned 18, instead of back in January when she was 17. It's an important detail.

If the police are telling us they locked some guy up for writing novels... well, all the shit that comes their way is their fault. If something else is actually going on, they should tell us that; otherwise we will assume they are doing the most terrible things, abridging peoples's rights and abducting folks for having the wrong thoughts.

Doubt isn't the opposite of faith; it is an element of faith. - Paul Tillich, German theologian and historian