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Comment: Re:The law makes no allowances for irony. (Score 1) 117

by KingOfBLASH (#49161245) Attached to: Craig Brittain (Revenge Porn King) Sues For Use of Image

Check the first link. It's that monkey picture the court ruled wasn't copyright to the photog.

There are other examples too. Try posting a picture of a famous landmark and you might get a DMCA takedown notice.

Or just go watch an NFL game and listen to the ridiculous warning about how even thinking about the game is copyright the NFL.

Copyright is very hard to explain these days. In some places there's broad over reach, and it's quite hard to determine what you can and can't take pictures of, and what you can legally do with those pictures.

Comment: Re:The law makes no allowances for irony. (Score 3, Interesting) 117

by KingOfBLASH (#49159489) Attached to: Craig Brittain (Revenge Porn King) Sues For Use of Image

Not completely true. There's a reason if you do a photo shoot with a model you ask them for a model release (right to use their image). Not every image is copyright to the photographer. And I have quite a few citations.

Of course, whether or not you need a release is a complex issue, but if you don't want lawyers sorting it out the best is to err on the side of caution.

Comment: Re:Smoking Hot Blondes (Score 3, Informative) 207

by KingOfBLASH (#49159281) Attached to: Research Suggests That Saunas Help You Live Longer

"Finnish Sauna" is often used as a label for a particular type of Sauna at a good bath house. Hot, dry heat (and very hot at that -- often in excess of 100F), often with a roaring fire in the center. You'll also have other types of saunas (steam saunas, infared saunas, etc.), some of which are also associated with a country (Russian Sauna, Turkish Sauna, etc.). And if you pick the right country, the sauna will both be co ed, and naked. (Remember those shirts from the 90s?)

I recommend Spa Zuiver in Amsterdam. Everyone will be naked, you can go into naked jacuzzis together, and it's a wonderfully relaxing experience.

Of course, before you book your ticket with thoughts of a hedon's paradise, you should know a few things.

1. The sauna is not a pick up place. The chances of meeting a hot woman there and turning it into something are quite small.
2. For every hot woman who you will be happy to see naked, there will be four old women or men
3. Staring is not something to be done. However, if you happen to be sitting in a place where you see everything, and someone comes in, well that's OK.
4. You will be naked too. And your beauty will be judging you as well.
5. There will be a bar. And food service. While you can't drink in the pools, where else can you drink around a bunch of naked people?

But, if you'd never been, I'd highly recommend it. A day at the sauna makes you feel incredible. Really. And muscle soreness will just disappear. It's quite amazing (try a sauna after your work outs sometime)

Comment: Funny, my experience has been completely different (Score 5, Insightful) 237

by KingOfBLASH (#49100533) Attached to: Ten Lies T-Mobile Told Me About My Data Plan

I find this article funny because my experience with T-Mobile has been completely different.

I'll admit, I only consider them good because the competition is so bad (and I've had a number of cell carriers), but so far I'm very happy with them:

  • I get an unlimited data plan for the cost of a limited data plan on Verizon
  • I get LTE in all major metro areas, and it's FAST
  • Unlimited really seems to be unlimited. I abuse it (streaming movies for instance) and haven't once seen a slow down. And I check periodically with a speed test app
  • Due to a large european network, roaming abroad can be cheaper than other carriers
  • While other carriers like Verizon and AT&T have a lot of bad press for tracking of users / selling users data, there's been none from T-Mobile. A cynical person might say this is because they're just better at it, but I feel it's important to reward companies who do the right thing.

The only complaint I have is they disable the personal hotspot on my phone after 5 GB of usage each month. After that I have to pay.

In short: they might not have everything I want, but they are awesome compared to everyone else out there.

Comment: Re:Cigar Prices (Score 1) 166

by KingOfBLASH (#49066179) Attached to: Cubans Allowed To Export Software and Software Services To the US

May be you've never had a good cigar then as the aroma of a good cigar is nothing short of heavenly.

The funny thing about cigar smoking is a lot of people try something cheap, because they don't want to spend a lot of money on something they're not going to enjoy.

But as the high end cigars are more likely to be tasty (it's hard to find anything tasty for less than $10 a stick), you may have a better experience with a better stick.

Comment: Re:Cigar Prices (Score 2) 166

by KingOfBLASH (#49064079) Attached to: Cubans Allowed To Export Software and Software Services To the US

They're only illegal in the US. Drive North to Canada, or South to Mexico, and you can buy them.

Getting them back is the tricky part. While anyone who has been through a border crossing can tell you it's pretty unlikely you get searched, the penalty is quite severe (something like $50k per incident). And while customs generally won't throw the book at you for a box of cigars, to make it worth while to drive to mexico you'd need to buy an awful lot of boxes.

Comment: Re:Cigar Prices (Score 2) 166

by KingOfBLASH (#49063881) Attached to: Cubans Allowed To Export Software and Software Services To the US

Smoking Cigarettes and Smoking Cigars are not equivalent.

Cigarettes are highly addictive and yes the lower class and poor do seem to be disproportionately affected.

Cigars are something enjoyed by the upper class, and generally people don't smoke a pack a day. You have one or two for a special occasion.

It's two completely different things. If you don't believe me try bringing back a box of expensive Cuban cigars and handing them out. Plenty of people who don't smoke will take one because they enjoy experiencing something new.

Comment: Re:What type of Non-Fiction? And fiction? (Score 1) 164

by KingOfBLASH (#49063389) Attached to: How is your book reading divided between fiction and non-fiction?

As far as I'm concerned, Matterhorn is non fiction. Sure he's changed the names of people and woven the story together in a way that reads like a novel, but if you read his other books (like What is it like to go to war?) which are more essays about war, you'll see he didn't really make anything important to the story up. Although I do understand how the fact that he writes it like a novel might make it seem like fiction.

Comment: Re:Cigar Prices (Score 2) 166

by KingOfBLASH (#49063347) Attached to: Cubans Allowed To Export Software and Software Services To the US

You've got it wrong. Even in Europe where they're legal, a good cuban cigar can go for upwards of $10 a stick.[1]

Good cigars take years to manufacture (mainly due to the fact that you have to cure the tobacco for years). Even though the cuban government might (and has been known to) rush out cigars that have not properly cured, people who smoke cigars will generally still want ones that are properly aged (unless you're aging them yourself). And I should add that cigars that have not been cured long enough taste like cleaning products, and are very unpleasant because the chemicals you are getting rid of by the curing process are what make them a joy to smoke.

So, all of a sudden, people who would never before dream of buying cuban cigars will start buying them[2]. And the increased demand without an increase in supply will cause a RISE to the price of cigars.[3]

[1] Don't tell me about the cheap stick you smoked that someone told you was made. Brands like Montecristo, Punch, Trinidad, Hoyo de Monterray are the quality ones I'm talking about

[2] Yes many smokers who are wise to the ways of the world know how to get smuggled cigars, but there are plenty of people who won't smuggle -- either out of fear or principles.

[3] If you live in somewhere cubans are legal, this might be a good time to start stockpiling boxes. If cigar prices do go through the roof you can make a tidy profit. And if they don't, well, you have a humidor full of delicious cigars. Win Win

Comment: What type of Non-Fiction? And fiction? (Score 3, Informative) 164

by KingOfBLASH (#49055735) Attached to: How is your book reading divided between fiction and non-fiction?

Non fiction tends to get a bad rap because people think of reading a text book from school. But not every piece of non fiction is as dry as reading an encyclopedia -- there are plenty of books that are both as gripping as any fiction novel, and also illuminating.

A great example is Matterhon by Karl Marlantes. The book is technically non-fiction because it's true, but it's written as a novel (about being in Vietnam). It was as gripping as any fiction writer's novel, but by the end of it you really have a good sense of what it was like to be in Vietnam, and a better understanding of the struggle of Veterans returning home.

Then there is non fiction that's maybe better titled "self help." If you're reading those books, it's a different type of reading. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, How to Win Friends and Influence People, Awaken the Giant -- all these sorts of books will be a really great help for your career and life. But if I'm sitting down and reading one, it's not because I'm looking to get lost (as the case will be when Patrick Rothfuss releases his next novel), but because I want to improve my life[1]. Same thing when I'm trying to brush up on my skills and stay current with new reference books. And the reading is different. While I might get lost in a novel by Neil Gaiman, for instance, reading of 7 Habits is more methodical, as in "I should read a chapter tonight"

Conversely, not all fiction has worlds you want to just get lost in. Ulysses, Proust's Remembrances of Things past [2], and any other number of books classified as "literature" present mountains to climb, partly for just the feeling of accomplishment that comes with finishing them. They can feel more like reading 7 Habits, as in "Oh I should read a few more chapters to better myself"

[1] You may laugh at this. I laughed at people who read such books when I was 20. But what I've found in my old age is that they really can help you in your career. For instance, your boss won't promote you to a manager if he doesn't think you're ready. While you might consider trial and error as a learning path, it'll be much longer. And it's a bit foolish, because only a fool would learn from his own mistakes when he can just spend some time and find out from others how to do what he wants.

[2] If you're prone to argue about the translation of the title (literary nerds unite!), let's just call it À la recherche du temps perdu.

Comment: Re:Except (Score 1) 480

by KingOfBLASH (#49034483) Attached to: The Mathematical Case For Buying a Powerball Ticket

You're missing the point. $2 is worthless to me. I can't buy a coffee (one I would drink) with $2, someplaces you won't even get a soda with it, and maybe would get me breakfast if I ate a donut but if I'm honest I have trouble thinking of a single restaurant I'd actually eat at with something on the menu for $2 or less.

$200 million is worth a lot to me, there's so much I can do with it.

Therefore, it's worth my trading $2 for the prospect of $200 million because I give away something I don't value ($2) for the chance of having something I do value ($200 million)

The fact that you are trying to value dollars with, well, dollars is the problem.

Of course, if I only made minimum wage I might really care about those $2, but I don't

Put not your trust in money, but put your money in trust.