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+ - The NFL wants you to think these things are illegal->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Professional sports have become a minefield of copyright and trademark issues, and no event more than the Super Bowl. Sherwin Siy of Public Knowledge has an article debunking some of the things the NFL has convinced people they can't do, even through they're perfectly legal. For example, you've probably heard the line where "descriptions" and "accounts" of the game are prohibited without the NFL's consent. That's all hogwash: "The NFL would be laughed out of court for trying to prevent them from doing so—just because you have a copyright in a work doesn't mean you can prevent people from talking about it. Copyright simply doesn't extend that far." Recording the game and watching it later is just fine, too.

So, will you be paying attention to the game today? Ignoring it? Practicing your cultivated disinterest?"

Link to Original Source

+ - Nuclear safety push to be softened after U.S. objections->

Submitted by mdsolar
mdsolar (1045926) writes "The United States looks set to succeed in watering down a proposal for tougher legal standards aimed at boosting global nuclear safety, according to senior diplomats.

Diplomatic wrangling will come to a head at a 77-nation meeting in Vienna next month that threatens to expose divisions over required safety standards and the cost of meeting them, four years after the Fukushima disaster in Japan.

Switzerland has put forward a proposal to amend the Convention on Nuclear Safety (CNS), arguing stricter standards could help avoid a repeat of Fukushima, where an earthquake and tsunami sparked triple nuclear meltdowns, forced more than 160,000 people to flee nearby towns and contaminated water, food and air."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:why google keeps microsoft away (Score 1) 276

by swillden (#48947665) Attached to: Microsoft To Invest In Rogue Android Startup Cyanogen

"No Android device I'm aware of uses flash for swap"

Then you're not paying attention. There are a number of mods to allow exactly this kind of operation, particularly on older hardware with "only" 1Gb ram.

MicroSD cards are cheap, so burning them out isn't a big deal.

Heh. Obviously I was talking about OEM devices, not user customizations. If you include custom configs you'll find just about everything.

Comment: Re:Not my findings (Score 1) 271

by IamTheRealMike (#48947635) Attached to: The NSA Is Viewed Favorably By Most Young People

So, now you have strong evidence that the people you talk to are not representative of America as a whole.

I would not put it that way. I'd say we have strong evidence that opinion polling can easily result in confusing or apparently contradictory results. The first sentence of the linked blog post has an air of mild surprise about it, and not surprisingly - when polled, 75% of Americans disagree that their government is trustworthy all or most of the time, yet they view most departments favourably? That makes little sense.

Something else doesn't make much sense. This result can easily be read as "people approve of what the NSA is doing". That must be what favourable means, right? Yet this very same polling agency has found a year ago that a majority of Americans oppose NSA practices. It's possible things have changed in the span of 2014, but other polls frequently return contradictory results too. This one by the Washington Post says, in the same set of questions, most people think monitoring all online activity to prevent terrorism isn't worth it, but monitoring all phone calls is. Why the difference?

At any rate, it's certainly true that the civil liberties wing of western societies has done a really appalling job of explaining to people why this sort of behaviour by governments is so risky, and Americans don't have recent local experience to fall back on. Unlike, say, people in former Soviet bloc countries, or Germans.

Comment: Re:In other news... (Score 1) 271

by IamTheRealMike (#48947567) Attached to: The NSA Is Viewed Favorably By Most Young People

TFA is actually covering opinion polls relating to several government agencies, but in typical Slashdot form, TFS only focuses on the NSA section, because that will be more inflammatory.

.... or maybe, just of more interest to a tech/geek focused site? I guess the NSA is a lot more relevant than the VA, especially to non-American slashdotters like me.

The poll isn't very surprising given its consistency with previous polls, but that doesn't change the fact that the attitudes of Americans don't seem to be very internally consistent or easily explainable. Either American people are just strangely illogical or there's some subtle issue with the polling method (or both?). The big question mark this survey leaves hanging is why trust in government is at an all time low (along with falling trust in most institutions), yet iterating specific parts of the government yields mostly favourable views. This is such an odd result that the very first sentence in the poll writeup says:

The public continues to express positive views of many agencies of the federal government, even though overall trust in government is near historic lows.

Yes, indeed. The public does A even though B. How strange.

The way the poll works means there's little information that can be used to explain this. Perhaps the 8 departments they chose to ask people about aren't the reason people distrust government. Perhaps their distrust falls exclusively on Congress, or on the judicial branch. We can't tell from this result alone.

Another possibility is that the wording of the poll - although superficially neutral - does trigger bias. The question was "do you trust the government in Washington always or most of the time?". People might be distinguishing between "the government in Washington" and "other bits of the government", e.g. the NSA is not actually in the city of Washington whereas Congress is. Ditto for various other departments and especially the military which does a great job of spreading itself around the country.

My final thought is that people might be more naturally inclined to take out their dissatisfaction on Congress than on the executive branch, because getting mad at Congress feels like it might achieve something due to voting, whereas getting mad at the NSA is about as useful as getting mad at a brick wall. They answer to no one and can't be controlled, so it's a lot more comfortable if you can convince yourself they're on your side rather than not.

+ - Customer given a Community Order for uploading a pornographic image

Submitted by Sesostris III
Sesostris III (730910) writes "Be careful what you upload to demonstration tablets in shops! After changing the display image of a demonstration iPad to a hardcore pornographic photo, a Tesco customer in Wales, UK, has been given a 12-month Community Order by magistrates in Swansea.

The man uploaded the image a a joke, and panicked when he realised he couldn't delete the image. In court, he admitted the charge of "causing the display of indecent matter". The image was only seen by Tesco workers and not by members of the public.

The sentence includes 100 hours of unpaid work, a victim surcharge of 60 GBP and costs of 85 GBP.

Of course, the Tesco store, like most supermarkets, probably sells the Sun newspaper (prop R Murdock) with its famous (and ongoing) page 3 (NSFW)."
Businesses

How, and Why, Apple Overtook Microsoft 384

Posted by timothy
from the paper-beats-rock dept.
HughPickens.com writes James B. Stewart writes in the NYT that in 1998 Bill Gates said in an interview that he "couldn't imagine a situation in which Apple would ever be bigger and more profitable than Microsoft" but less than two decades later, Apple, with a market capitalization more than double Microsoft's, has won. The most successful companies need a vision, and both Apple and Microsoft have one. But according to Stewart, Apple's vision was more radical and, as it turns out, more farsighted. Where Microsoft foresaw a computer on every person's desk, Apple went a big step further: Its vision was a computer in every pocket. "Apple has been very visionary in creating and expanding significant new consumer electronics categories," says Toni Sacconaghi. "Unique, disruptive innovation is really hard to do. Doing it multiple times, as Apple has, is extremely difficult." According to Jobs' biographer Walter Isaacson, Microsoft seemed to have the better business for a long time. "But in the end, it didn't create products of ethereal beauty. Steve believed you had to control every brush stroke from beginning to end. Not because he was a control freak, but because he had a passion for perfection." Can Apple continue to live by Jobs's disruptive creed now that the company is as successful as Microsoft once was? According to Robert Cihra it was one thing for Apple to cannibalize its iPod or Mac businesses, but quite another to risk its iPhone juggernaut. "The question investors have is, what's the next iPhone? There's no obvious answer. It's almost impossible to think of anything that will create a $140 billion business out of nothing."

+ - How, and Why, Apple Overtook Microsoft

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com (3830033) writes "James B. Stewart writes in the NYT that in 1998 Bill Gates said in an interview that he “couldn’t imagine a situation in which Apple would ever be bigger and more profitable than Microsoft" but less than two decades later, Apple, with a market capitalization more than double Microsoft’s, has won. The most successful companies need a vision, and both Apple and Microsoft have one. But according to Stewart, Apple’s vision was more radical and, as it turns out, more farsighted. Where Microsoft foresaw a computer on every person’s desk, Apple went a big step further: Its vision was a computer in every pocket. “Apple has been very visionary in creating and expanding significant new consumer electronics categories,” says Toni Sacconaghi. “Unique, disruptive innovation is really hard to do. Doing it multiple times, as Apple has, is extremely difficult." According to Jobs' biographer Walter Isaacson, Microsoft seemed to have the better business for a long time. “But in the end, it didn’t create products of ethereal beauty. Steve believed you had to control every brush stroke from beginning to end. Not because he was a control freak, but because he had a passion for perfection.” Can Apple continue to live by Jobs’s disruptive creed now that the company is as successful as Microsoft once was? According to Robert Cihra it was one thing for Apple to cannibalize its iPod or Mac businesses, but quite another to risk its iPhone juggernaut. “The question investors have is, what’s the next iPhone? There’s no obvious answer. It’s almost impossible to think of anything that will create a $140 billion business out of nothing.”"

Comment: Re:Never finish (Score 1) 172

The Hugo Award Nominees reading package last year includes the entire Wheel of Time series (which I thought was a classy move by the publisher, and a nice contrast to Orbit Books including only excerpts for their three nominees.) (If you're a member of the appropriate Worldcon, you're eligible to vote for the Hugos, and in recent years they've provided an electronic package of most of the written and graphical works that are nominated.) The bad part about this is that the tablet I use for reading has the bloody entire bloody Wheel of bloody Time series on it, and I'm about 90% of the way through :-)

I hadn't read it before Jordan died, and probably that wasn't my birthday anyway, so for me it wasn't the worst birthday present ever; for that one I'll have to thank my little brother for giving me chicken pox when I was 10. There wasn't a vaccine for it back then, but there is now, and if your parents didn't give you the vaccine and other kids didn't give you the disease, trust me, it's one of the vaccines you want to get. (I also got measles the hard way, but I was young enough I don't remember it very well. Got the polio vaccine, though, unlike a neighbor's kid who was a couple of years older and had to use crutches.)

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. - Edmund Burke

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