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Comment: Re:hahaha (Score 3, Informative) 127

by Nidi62 (#47914783) Attached to: Court: Car Dealers Can't Stop Tesla From Selling In Massachusetts

I had a friend who worked in the finance dept of a car dealership. People would spend 2 hours trying to wangle the best possible deal from the salesman, beat him down, get free floor mats, whatever. Then they would walk into my friends office. How does $400 a month sound for payments? OK sure. And in 2 seconds they would agree to a loan at 12% where the banks would have given them 5%. And the dealer would earn an extra $3k on the car loan.

I went into a dealer just about 3 weeks ago, told the salesman I wanted a new car, was trading in my truck, and wanted to spend no more than $130 a month over 3 years. He almost fainted and then basically called me crazy. The sales manager even tried to get me to lease a car instead of buying. Ended up walking out of there with a new car(end of the model year) for $125 a month for 3 years with $10,300 trade in on my truck (KBB value around $9900 and needed about $2k worth of work-not including some cosmetic body work) and $2k down. Think I end up paying about $300 in interest if I take all 3 years, but plan to pay it off sooner. I save more in gas than my monthly payments cost. The trick was knowing what we wanted and refusing to budge from it.

Comment: A hundred times less? (Score 1) 61

by ScentCone (#47914447) Attached to: A 16-Year-Old Builds a Device To Convert Breath Into Speech
Grrr.

Sure if thing A is inexpensive, then thing B which costs a fraction of that price might indeed be said to cost X times less. Implying that thing A is already less than some other option, and thing B is even MORE less.

But if thing A is very expensive (as in the example cited in TFA), thing B would be better described as being not a hundred times less ... but one hundredth the cost.

Comment: Valve already made this mistake (Score 1) 565

Way back in the day, when Steam used that ugly vaguely-military olive drab color, any free apps just showed up in everyone's accounts. There weren't that many - a few demos, all for Valve games. The entire Steam library was only like thirty or forty games at this point.

And then PopCap joined. They basically doubled the list of paid games, but also added demos for at least two dozen games (I recall the list was so long I actually had to scroll). People were understandably furious, because that made it a lot harder to pick out the games you had actually bought from the demos that just popped into everyone's accounts. I think this was before there was an option to show only installed games, which would have made things much worse.

Valve fixed that pretty damn quickly. And I thought everyone would have seen and learned from that. Sadly Apple refuses to learn from their own mistakes, let alone the mistakes of others.

Comment: Re:What the fuck is wrong with you people ? (Score 1) 279

If anybody but a LEO does it, it is "searching for illegal pornography" and "trying to obtain illegal pornography" and a crime.

Neither of those are a crime in any jurisdiction I'm familiar with. Maybe there are some ass-backwards states in the US where that's true, but they would be the exception rather than the rule. Nice try though.

Comment: Re:Problem? (Score 1) 279

The better analogy in your case would be if the investigator had to enter someone's house (without a warrant) to view a potential crime while the homeowner had a sign out saying "come on in!".

FTFY. If you install P2P software and share files with the world, you are no longer operating in private.

United States

Navy Guilty of Illegally Broad Online Searches: Child Porn Conviction Overturned 279

Posted by samzenpus
from the looking-too-far dept.
An anonymous reader writes In a 2-1 decision, the 9th Circuit Court ruled that Navy investigators regularly run illegally broad online surveillance operations that cross the line of military enforcement and civilian law. The findings overturned the conviction of Michael Dreyer for distributing child pornography. The illegal material was found by NCIS agent Steve Logan searching for "any computers located in Washington state sharing known child pornography on the Gnutella file-sharing network." The ruling reads in part: "Agent Logan's search did not meet the required limitation. He surveyed the entire state of Washington for computers sharing child pornography. His initial search was not limited to United States military or government computers, and, as the government acknowledged, Agent Logan had no idea whether the computers searched belonged to someone with any "affiliation with the military at all." Instead, it was his "standard practice to monitor all computers in a geographic area," here, every computer in the state of Washington. The record here demonstrates that Agent Logan and other NCIS agents routinely carry out broad surveillance activities that violate the restrictions on military enforcement of civilian law. Agent Logan testified that it was his standard practice to "monitor any computer IP address within a specific geographic location," not just those "specific to US military only, or US government computers." He did not try to isolate military service members within a geographic area. He appeared to believe that these overly broad investigations were permissible, because he was a "U.S. federal agent" and so could investigate violations of either the Uniform Code of Military Justice or federal law."

Comment: Re:Do We Want Our Gov't to regulate the drones? (Score 1) 94

by ScentCone (#47901651) Attached to: Drone-Based Businesses: Growing In Canada, Grounded In the US

*twirls finger around head* cuckoo cuckoo... looks like the loonies are taking over slashdot lol

So, let's see ... the administration publishes a written interpretation of a law they don't like, and you think it's crazy to report that fact?

Obviously it's nothing new for the Obama administration to simply ignore statutory requirements (see his unilateral re-writing of features of the ACA entirely for political expediency), and this is simply another case of it. But what's interesting is that you are obviously either ignorant of their specific language in the new "interpretation" of the law in question, or you're well aware of the implications and are just doing your best to wish it away through childish ad hominem. Classic lefty sycophantism. Or, I'll just give you the benefit of the doubt, and tell you to go read their published intention to twist the law into an implementation that is 180 degrees opposite to its plain, so you can come back here and argue the details instead of stamping your feet like an eight year old girl.

Comment: Re:Do We Want Our Gov't to regulate the drones? (Score 1) 94

by ScentCone (#47899113) Attached to: Drone-Based Businesses: Growing In Canada, Grounded In the US

ROFL.
Obama's out to stop the drone entrepenaurs!
ITS ALL A CONSPIRACY!!

It's not a conspiracy, coward. It's published policy. Your decision to trot out ad hominem in place of addressing the basic facts of the matter shows you know I'm right. That you're posting as a coward makes it even more clear. But keep propping up your pet administration, man. The documents they publish - you know, the ones that have been amply covered in both aviation news and general media of all sorts - make this all very clear. The agency has just been sued by multiple parties over the 'interpretation' document and policy position in question. But please, don't trouble yourself to keep up with the news - that would take the fun out of your shrill, drooling Obama fanboyism.

Comment: Re:Do We Want Our Gov't to regulate the drones? (Score 1) 94

by ScentCone (#47899081) Attached to: Drone-Based Businesses: Growing In Canada, Grounded In the US

This is that anti-job anti-business Obama's fault!

To which I respond: [citation needed].

You actually need a citation to believe that the director of the FAA is a political appointee? You are that unaware of how federal agencies are run by the executive branch of the government? You don't need a citation, you need a remedial course in basic civics. Please return to the conversation when you understand the basic structure of the government.

Comment: Re:Do We Want Our Gov't to regulate the drones? (Score 5, Insightful) 94

by ScentCone (#47896735) Attached to: Drone-Based Businesses: Growing In Canada, Grounded In the US
Yes, and congress passed a law requiring the FAA to produce such regulations in a timely fashion due in this coming year. The administration has said they will not obey that law, and will not have such a framework in anything like the timely fashion required.

In the meantime, the administration has published an "interpretation" of the 2012 law that says they take it to mean more or less the exact opposite of its plain intent, and they are busy getting ready to fine people for doing things like participating in RC competitions (you know, like we've been having for decades) that happen to involve things like $20 cash prizes ... because that's commercial drone use! The employees of US-based companies that have for years stepped out back of their shops to test-fly a new RC airplane or multirotor will, according to the Obama administration's new interpretation, be breaking the law and subject to substantial fines for being paid to fly unmanned aerial systems. We can't have that! Quick! Shut down all of those businesses and jobs! Chase those retailers out of the country!

It's preposterous. We're not just dragging behind the rest of the world, we're actively taking steps backwards. The administration is deliberately, purposefully, putting the brakes on what would otherwise be a multi-billion dollar industry full of innovation and attractive to STEM-types in this country. The left's instinct to Nanny State their way down into every last aspect of what someone might do to conduct some business (hey, kid, quit flying your $250, 2-pound plastic quad-copter with a cheap camera over your neighbor's roof because he asked you to, and said he'd give you $25 to get pictures of his roof gutters for him - if you don't cease and desist such commercial UAV operations, that's going to be a $10,000 fine!) means they can't simply clone the sort of framework that the UK or Canada have long had in place ... no, there's got to be a way to make it all MORE miserable, MORE expensive, MORE punitive, and nearly impossible for small entrepreneurs to get into - because otherwise we might miss out on some more federal fees, and intrusive paperwork.

And as usual, the very idiots that we'd most worry about anyway, who will be getting a drone from Amazon tomorrow and flying it over a park full of kids an hour later without any understanding of safe operations or good manners, will completely ignore the FAA's rules/guidance/regs anyway. The government, which is here to help you, will only be placing the painful burden and expense on the very people who are the most responsible anyway: those with a lot to lose because they're in business to use the technology.

More Hope and Change, hard at work for our economy. Yes, Obama's man Huerta at the FAA is a political appointee and that aspect of the food chain lays the FAA's entire posture on this squarely at the door of the White House.

Comment: Re:Carpooling should be as free as speech (Score 1) 283

by ScentCone (#47895481) Attached to: California Declares Carpooling Via Ride-Share Services Illegal

In the future, when the world is more enlightened, freedom to trade will be as much a basic right as speech is today.

No. The same collectivist and PC-style urges that currently act to prevent free expression will continue to further intercede when you seek to trade with someone. Why? Because there will always be people who think it's unfair that you and someone else have found a mutually beneficial reason to interact, and they will use the force of government to take a piece of that benefit, pay career middlemen in the government to handle it, and hand some of that benefit over to other people who didn't manage to make that transaction happen for themselves. That trend has been increasing, not decreasing. Places like academia and mass media are now LESS free places, for expression, and the market is an increasingly less free place in which to transact business between any two given parties. The "in the future" you envision is a fantasy. That horse has left the barn, and the nanny staters have won.

Vax Vobiscum

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