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+ - French provider Free could buy US branch of T-Mobile

Submitted by Guybrush_T
Guybrush_T (980074) writes "Iliad, the parent company of Free, confirmed today having made an offer to buy 56% of the US branch of T-Mobile. This could be very good news for the US, since the provider reduced significantly the average price of mobile plans in France since they entered the mobile market two years ago. Their disruptive strategy, featuring an all-inclusive €20/month plan and a €2/month plan gathered 11% of the French market in only two years and lowered the price of plans by a 5 to 10 factor."

Comment: Re:Sounds awesome except.... (Score 2) 191

An easy way to fix this would be to have the USPTO grant every patent (for a fee) as it does currently, but also every time you want to sue someone, you would need an USPTO expertise granting you the right to sue.

That way, creating bad patents would cost you money ; suing for nothing would cost you money, and invalidate your patents at the same time. And the USPTO would get enough money to have real experts look at each case.

Comment: Re:This (Score 1) 417

by Guybrush_T (#46958969) Attached to: London Black Cabs Threaten Chaos To Stop Uber

I would agree if official taxis really knew their area, had a GPS in their car, did not try to refuse drives that don't fit them, and didn't try to steal you. I don't know for London, but in Paris and Dublin, I experienced it. No GPS, doesn't know the address, use the wrong (more expensive) fare, ...

The regulation is so hard that any taxi that pass it tends to consider itself "safe" from competition.

Taxi lobbies fight for more protections ... states gives them more protection [real failure here] ... user experience lowers ... competition arises ... chaos.

Comment: Re:mac only? (Score 1) 121

by Guybrush_T (#46939325) Attached to: GitHub Open Sources Atom, Their Text Editor Based On Chromium

The fact that it is only available on Mac makes me wonder if Atom is that great ...

Unless I didn't understand the idea (not easy to find out what Atom is, actually), they're developing a javascript editor on top of Chromium. How could that NOT work on Linux and Windows ?

What the incentive for doing yet another editor ?

Having an editor running inside a web browser to develop javascript code could be a nice idea (especially to instant-test code), but looking at their website I'm a bit puzzled ...

Comment: Re:Forcing password changes is never a good idea (Score 1) 288

by Guybrush_T (#46917667) Attached to: Applying Pavlovian Psychology to Password Management

So True.

When will people understand that most of the password we use are not stored on a passwd file we can crack off-line ? Basing the password policy on a brute-force offline cracking time is just annoying for everyone. Brute-force mitigation is very easy to do, and transforms a 4 character password into a very hard to crack password.

So, to all those shitty web-sites, stop enforcing annoying policies to your users (as if it would improve security) and implement other useful techniques such as mitigation on trial-error / IP attack detection, ...

Comment: Re:Not Necessarily A Bad Thing (Score 2) 202

by Guybrush_T (#46814909) Attached to: Netflix Plans To Raise Prices By "$1 or $2 a Month"

I'm amused to see that in the US, having an internet access is still optional :-). Are the US considered an under-developed country ?

That said, I'm sure your comment only makes sense to a very small portion of the population ; which will make cable companies useless in the short term.

Comment: Re:Yes, they are (Score 2) 477

by Guybrush_T (#46714431) Attached to: New French Law Prohibits After-Hours Work Emails

What you described is not prohibited by the agreement.

The idea is only to count the work you do 24/7 as "working hours". And any hour above 35h / week will give you some rights (salary, vacations, ...).

That way, your work contract will be clearer -- no hidden things, no change in situation like your boss sending you e-mails more and more without a pay increase to reflect the extra hours you're doing.

But again, it does not prevent you to check your e-mails at home.

Disclaimer : I'm french.

Comment: Re:The issue is not about compliance with the law (Score 1) 94

by Guybrush_T (#46564865) Attached to: Turkish Finance Minister Defends Twitter Ban

Censorship is a very relative concept. There is no such thing as "free speech". In every country, there are laws against harassment, racism, libeling, that can make what you say (or tweet) illegal.

Now, what makes the US laws better than the Turkish laws ? If they decide some message is illegal, they are perfectly sovereign in preventing people from viewing it.

You can call for freedom and democracy if you have proofs (or arguments) showing that the court decision was not taken in a democratic way.

Comment: Re:USA sets the example here (Score 2) 94

by Guybrush_T (#46564735) Attached to: Turkish Finance Minister Defends Twitter Ban

Agreed.

And besides, Twitter may be hosted in the US, if they want to do some business in Turkey, they have to obey to turkish laws - or risk a ban. The government filtering does the right thing : remove most of the traffic which makes it a (potentially) profitable company.

The fact that the court order is good or bad has little to do here. If some court decided that a message is illegal (harassing, threatening, racist, ...), Twitter has little right to decide if they agree or not if they want to make some business in the country.

I don't see what is so strange that a government ban illegal (in their laws) websites. You can discuss the court order, you can discuss the law, but the fact that Twitter did not comply to the court order is a political decision (with consequences).

Comment: Re:Steve Jobs on PCB traces (Score 1) 136

by Guybrush_T (#45034383) Attached to: In Praise of Micromanagement
Jobs wasn't wrong. If someone posts images of the PCB board of an iPhone 5, everybody will be interested in looking at it. At this period of time, showing a PCB board was just awesome. It looked like the future. Having a beautiful PCB could have been a strong communication point. Maybe Jobs didn't think about that and was just plain wrong at this time, but I'm not convinced the situation is so clear.

Comment: Connectors (Score 1) 295

by Guybrush_T (#43941339) Attached to: 10GbE: What the Heck Took So Long?

The main reason why 10GbE took time to arrive is simple : connectors are not the good-old RJ45 used for 10Mb, 100Mb and 1GbE. The RJ45 connector is small, cheap and backward compatible. The 10GbE connectors are deep, expensive and not RJ45-compatible, hence cannot be used as a 1GbE port.

10GbE is appearing on servers because the price order is compatible with the expensive and deep connector. It won't appear on commodity motherboards until a smaller connector is designed.

Comment: Re:Stupid, stupid, *stupid* (Score 1) 247

by Guybrush_T (#40750673) Attached to: USB 3.0 100W Power Standard Seeks To End Proprietary Chargers

Quoting http://askville.amazon.com/dangerous-car-batteries/AnswerViewer.do?requestId=4217899 :

It is not dangerous to touch the positive terminal with your bare skin, because 12V is not a hazardous voltage.

So the answer is simply : no, it is not dangerous to touch my car battery (though the battery can be dangerous in a lot of other ways).

I learned something today :-)

+ - French ISP open new 20 EUR and 2 EUR 3G plans->

Submitted by
Tymst
Tymst writes "French ISP "Free" rocked the local mobile world yesterday, launching 2 new plans.

The first one is a "welfare" plan for 2 EUR (approx. 2.5 USD as of today), granting one hour of outbound calls and 60 SMS (inbound calls and SMS are free). It's actually free for the first 3 millions users of Free's DSL service.

The second and main plan is an all-encompassing plan granting unlimited calls, SMS, MMS, and up to 3GB of data, plus free access to Free's urban wifi network. Free voice communications include international calls to fixed lines in 40 countries, and to fixed AND mobile lines in 4 countries, including the United States and Canada. It cost around 20 EUR (approx. 25.5 USD), or 16 EUR for existing DSL users (approx. 20 USD). Tethering, VoIP and P2P are allowed.

Free has been previously know for sinking DSL plans' prices below 30 EUR in France when it launched its service in 2002. It is speculated that the same thing will happen to mobile plans now, with Free's competitors Orange, SFR and Bouygues Telecom having their backs against the wall."

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