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Comment: Re:Federal Sentencing Guidelines (Score 1) 219

by Gazzonyx (#48472683) Attached to: Hacker Threatened With 44 Felony Charges Escapes With Misdemeanor

Federal sentencing guidelines almost never ask for "fully stacked" sentences. The term you're looking for is "consecutively." Most of the time, all sentences are served "concurrently," or at the same time. On rare occasions, as you write, a judge will specify that the sentences be served consecutively, to keep an exceptionally bad felon behind bars for as long as possible. Of course, the prosecutor can always threaten to ask for consecutive sentences to bulldoze the defendant into accepting a plea.

I've never considered this before, but isn't that a bit of "the law of unintended consequences"? For instance, if I know that I can commit a single crime now and pay the full rate or commit multiple crimes and pay them off in parallel, why deterrent is there for me to limit my activities?

I've always hated a law that I've heard of (this is strictly hearsay, I've never actually verified it) where in some parts of the US, if you involve a gun in a robbery there's an automatic minimum sentence which is in line with the sentence for having a gun and committing assault; just by having the gun you're already in as much trouble as if you used it, so there really isn't any incentive to not use it if you think doing so could allow you to avoid capture and prosecution. If you're going to be charged for attempted homicide, it's not like taking a hostage is going to add to your sentence at the end of the day and it has the most narrow chance of getting you off the hook.

My SO is a paralegal and I'm always amazed at the perverse incentives that are built into the legal system since you always seem to be in for a pound when you're in for a penny. No doubt legislation passed by someone "tough on crime", but the public seems to support it. I've always thought that putting someone in a place where they stand to lose nothing is a rather poor position to put them in.

<rambling>
For instance, I had lost my license due to unpaid tickets (I thought I had paid them all off, but I must have missed a payment) and I was pulled over for a taillight being out. At this point I now had a suspended license for driving on a suspended license (aka, strike two before they pull it for 5 years in the state I was then living). I went to a concert with some friends and they all hit the booze a bit hard and when it came time to drive home and they were all too drunk, we let the least drunk guy drive. It was more dangerous than the sober guy driving, obviously, but we reasoned that if we got pulled over the law would take it easier on a guy with a first DUI, a wife and a kid than a guy with a third violation for driving on a suspended license. The math was easy; I got "caught" (I didn't know I was doing anything wrong) a second time and they took my license for a year for the second infraction; your first DUI infraction is an automatic 1 month suspension or so. We knew which crime was "worse" in this case by what would have happened to myself versus what would have happened to the drunk guy that drove us home. We also knew which was safer, but it's not like the cops would have taken that into account, so it wasn't really a consideration in our assessment of the situation.
</rambling>

+ - Ask Slashdot: Can you M Theory with the Standard Model 3x3x3?

Submitted by genfail
genfail (777943) writes "Hey I was thinking, I think you can unify M Theory with the Standard Model if you we have 3 dimensions space, 3 time and 3 for gravity. 3x3x3
Nth dimensional time fixes the weird artifacts you see in the standard model that create things like dark matter to explain angular momentum of galaxies is even across the disk.
E=MC2 when taken as a whole also implies that time is a variable relative to mass, the more massive something is the slower time around it moves for the same reason that time slows down at the speed of light.
When taken into consideration it becomes apparent that angular momentum is not caused by mass that can't be seen but by the fact that time moves more slowly around a super-massive black hole at the middle causing the appearance of objects in the middle orbiting differently. So time and gravity both are being moved in three dimensions each.
What do you guys think?"

Comment: Re:Actually, this isn't how McDonalds corporate wo (Score 1) 720

[...]

Once they do sell you a franchise, they dictate your trade dress, which means corporate pays for remodeling the individual franchise stores (after all, McDonalds themselves owns the property), and when they tell you remodel, expect the crews to show up and just do it, you are at best granted minor choices on things like arrangement of the bathrooms, and the manager's office, and so on. Otherwise, they dictate. [...]

Everything you say other than this is true (former MCD shift manager here, but high school was a long time ago, so I may be mis-recalling). The corporation gives you choice of decor from the "catalog" (yes, there is basically a catalog for interiors) and then you split the bill with them 50/50 for the remodeling/upgrade. But they do tell you when you're going to be doing the remodeling and they do hire the contractors. Usually this also includes upgrades of the old/retrofitted kitchen equipment, which is expensive and provided by corporate approved suppliers only.

+ - Better free disk space monitoring?

Submitted by relliker
relliker (197112) writes "In the olden days, when monitoring a file system of a few 100 MB, we would be alerted when it topped 90% or more, with 95% a lot of times considered quite critical. Today, however, with a lot of file systems in the Terabyte range, a 90-95% full file system can still have a considerable amount of free space but we still mostly get bugged by the same alerts as in the days of yore when there really isn't a cause for immediate concern. Apart from increasing thresholds and/or starting to monitor actual free space left instead of a percentage, should it be time for monitoring systems to become a bit more intelligent by taking space usage trends and heuristics into account too and only warn about critical usage when projected thresholds are exceeded? I’d like my system to warn me with something like, “Hey!, you’ll be running out of space in a couple of months if you go on like this!” Or is this already the norm and I’m still living in a digital cave?"

+ - Early childhood neglect associated with altered brain structure, ADHD->

Submitted by vinces99
vinces99 (2792707) writes "Under the rule of dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, thousands of Romanian children were placed in overcrowded orphanages with bleak conditions and minimal human contact, a legacy that continued even after the 1989 revolution. Only recently have research and public concern caused policy changes.

University of Washington research on children who began life in these institutions shows that early childhood neglect is associated with changes in brain structure. A paper published this month in Biological Psychiatry shows that children who spent their early years in these institutions have thinner brain tissue in cortical areas that correspond to impulse control and attention. “These differences suggest a way that the early care environment has dramatic and lasting effects for children’s functioning,” said lead author Katie McLaughlin, a UW assistant professor of psychology.

Since 2000, the Bucharest Early Intervention Project has worked to document and treat the children’s health. McLaughlin joined the team about six years ago to focus on brain development. This study is among the first in any setting to document how social deprivation in early life affects the thickness of the cortex, the thin folded layer of gray matter that forms the outer layer of the brain. The study provides “very strong support” for a link between the early environment and ADHD, McLaughlin said."

Link to Original Source

+ - Is open-source more secure then closed source?->

Submitted by Meshach
Meshach (578918) writes "Interesting article about whether open source sofware is able to be secured against threats as well as closed-source software. Open-source advocates say they are more secure than proprietary software because developers are constantly fixing flaws found by users. The recent Heartbleed and Shellshock outbreaks vindicate this theory. Critics say the open nature of the software leaves it vulnerable to hackers because the programing flaws are out in the open for all to see."
Link to Original Source

+ - Apple releases CUPS 2.0->

Submitted by kthreadd
kthreadd (1558445) writes "15 years after CUPS 1.0 was released Apple released version 2.0 of the printing system for GNU/Linux and other Unix-style operating systems. One of the major new features in 2.0 is that the test program for ippserver now passes the IPP Everywhere self-certification tests. Also, an interesting blog post looking back on the past and onto the future of printing. Since the first major release in 1999 printing has beome much more personal, printer drivers are going away and mobile usage is now the norm."
Link to Original Source

+ - Supposed Battery Breakthrough. 70% charge in 2mins, 20yr life.->

Submitted by chaosdivine69
chaosdivine69 (1456649) writes "According to Scientists at Nanyang Technology University (NTU), they have developed ultra-fast charging batteries that can be recharged up to 70 per cent in only two minutes and have a 20 yr lifespan (10,000 charges). The impact of this is potentially a game changer for a lot of industries reliant on lithium ion batteries.

In the car industry for example, consumers will save huge on costs for battery replacement and manufacturers will save on material construction since they're using a nanotube structure of Titanium dioxide which is an abundant, cheap and safe material found in soil. Titanium dioxide is commonly used as a food additive or in sunscreen lotions to absorb harmful ultraviolet rays. It is believed that charging an electric car can be achieved in as little as 5 minutes making it comparable to filling up a gasoline based automobile."

Link to Original Source

+ - Ask Slashdot: Handling Patented IP in a Job Interview?

Submitted by ZahrGnosis
ZahrGnosis (66741) writes "I'm in the midst of a rather lengthy job interview; something I haven't done for some time as I've worked as a contract employee with a much lower barrier to entry for years. Recently, I've started patenting some inventions that are applicable to my industry. One hope is that the patents look good to the prospective employer on a resume, but I don't want them to take the existing IP for granted as part of the deal. I'm worried I have the wrong attitude, however. My question is, how should I treat licensing of the patent as a topic with respect to the topic of my employment? Should I build the use of my patented ideas into my salary? Should I explicitly refuse to implement my patented IP for the company without a separate licensing fee? If I emphasize the patent during the interviews without the intent to give them the IP for free,is that an ethical lapse — a personal false advertising? At the same time, when I work for a company I feel they should get the benefit of my full expertise... am I holding back something I shouldn't by not granting a de-facto license while I work for them? I perceive a fine balance between being confrontational and helpful, while not wanting to jeopardize the job prospect nor restrict my ability to capitalize on my invention. Thoughts?"

+ - Flash IDE will integrate with open source, cross-platform Haxe/OpenFL platform

Submitted by lars_doucet
lars_doucet (2853771) writes "Flash CC now has an SDK for creating custom project file formats; this lets you use the Flash IDE to prepare and publish content for (not-the-flash-player) compile targets.

Among these new platforms is OpenFL, a fully open-source re-implementation of the Flash API that exports to Javascript and C++ (no Flash Player!), among other targets:
http://www.openfl.org/blog/201...

When Adobe demoed the custom project feature at Adobe MAX the other night, they brought out Joshua Granick (lead maintainer of OpenFL) to show off a custom OpenFL project format that lets you make Flash Art in Flash CC, then compile it out to Flash, HTML5, and native C++ (desktop+mobile) targets.

Maybe Adobe heard us after all?"

+ - Designing a Telecom Configuration Center

Submitted by Big Jim Taters
Big Jim Taters (1490261) writes "I have been tasked with helping move our config center from one location to our Headquarters. I have a small budget and no choice in location. I do, however, have an opportunity to design the space fresh (well, kinda.) What we will be configuring is routers, switches, firewalls, and other telecom related devices. What I cannot find is any "Best Practices" or "Lessons Learned" out there. So I ask you fine folks: What are some of the best and worst designs, practices, procedures, and work flows that you have encountered in sitting down to stage anywhere from 2 to 200 devices at once to get configured?"

+ - Real Reason Behind Windows 10 Name: Compatibility->

Submitted by ndykman
ndykman (659315) writes "The Independent reports that a MS developer has suggested a real reason behind the new name for the Windows 10 name. Old code. More specifically code that looks for "Windows 9" to determine the windows version. Fine for Windows 95 or Windows 98, but not so great for a new operating system. The article includes a link that shows that yes, this would be a problem."
Link to Original Source

+ - Mystery of Gravity powered aircraft 4

Submitted by rjstegbauer
rjstegbauer (845926) writes "GizMag published an article about a plane that doesn't need fuel to fly, but sounds too good to be true. The airplane design claims to use buoyancy to go up, then gravity to gain speed for horizontal flight. I'm thinking that it's violating the Second Law of Thermodynamics, but I'm not an aeronautical engineer.

Or was I fooled by a spoof?"

+ - Fired NY Fed Regulator's Secret Audio Recordings Inside Goldman Sachs 2

Submitted by maynard
maynard (3337) writes "Carmen Segarra used to work as a regulator for the New York Federal Reserve Bank, one of twelve regional banks that make up the US central banking system. In her capacity as regulator, Ms. Segarra was assigned to a team overseeing investment banking giant Goldman Sachs. There, while investigating a case of Goldman having advisied a client about a buyout offer by another company in which the firm held significant investment holdings, she determined that Goldman didn't even have a conflict of interest policy. Her supervisor initially backed the investigation, until it became clear she meant to file a written report detailing her findings of fact. Then they abruptly fired her.

And all this would have been another unfortunate case of 'she-said / institution-said' ineffective whistleblowing were it not for the fact that Ms. Segarra saw what was coming and had bought a keychain audio recorder. With it, she collected 46 hours of internal discussion and meetings, including statements by Goldman Sachs principles admitting the firm didn't have a conflict of interest policy and that the deal under investigation had been "shady." Additionally, she collected reams of documents and testimony. She thought her case iron clad.

However, when it came time to reveal her findings in full to superiors, though initially supportive of the investigation, her boss quickly shifted gears and worked to squelch the report. This culminated in a recorded meeting where her boss made clear his supervisors at the Fed insisted she downplay those findings. Then, a week later, before she could formally file the report, they fired her.

While bits of the story have been out in print for about a year, the radio show This American Life just published actual excerpts from those audio recordings. They make for harrowing listening. As the producer says in the introduction, her recordings show: "Repeated examples of pervasive regulatory capture by the industry regulators are meant to oversee."

In other words, whereas before we could all surmise just how bad banking regulation must be, what with the Financial Crisis having nearly tanked the world economy and all, with this audio we can hear first hand and in minute detail what it's like for an honest regulator to try to do the job properly: You get fired. Quickly. Then your embarrassing work is buried and reputation smeared. And if she'd just kept her mouth shut, she coulda gotten rich! This, at the very heart of the global financial system.

Is it any wonder why the public has lost faith in our political and economic institutions?"

The sooner all the animals are extinct, the sooner we'll find their money. - Ed Bluestone

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