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Comment: Re:History Repeating Itself (Score 2) 1276

by Kushana (#39249061) Attached to: Scientists Say People Aren't Smart Enough For Democracy To Flourish

I don't agree with this, principally because it assumes that the People are good legislators. While in general (and in this thread) we concentrate on the electioneering and pandering aspects of politicians, there is another ignored side: they make law. And just as we require high standards for those who represent in the legal system (lawyers) and those who adjudicate the law (judges), we should have high standards for those who make it.

Writing legislation is a skill, and governments benefit when it is done well. Just as you don't want the public voting on how to fly the plane, you don't want them writing legislation.

What we need is a public that can choose good legislators/politicians. And the problem is, they're not very good at it, and elections are not framed in terms of who makes better decisions.

Comment: Re:This is confusing, a little (Score 2) 79

by Kushana (#36453122) Attached to: Righthaven Loses

This is one of the things that the judge found, but not the only thing.

The Righthaven suit failed because they are not the copyright holders, non-holders can't sue, and their attempts to arrange otherwise failed.

They are at risk of being sanctioned because they failed to disclose the arrangement between themselves and the copyright holders.


Man Fined $1.5 Million For Leaked Mario Game 287

Posted by Soulskill
from the sorry-about-your-luck dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A Queensland man will have to pay Nintendo $1.5 million in damages after illegally copying and uploading one of its recent games to the internet ahead of its release, the gaming giant says. Nintendo said the loss was caused when James Burt made New Super Mario Bros Wii available for illegal download a week ahead of its official Australian release in November of last year. Nintendo applied for and was granted a search order by the Federal Court, forcing Burt to disclose the whereabouts of all his computers, disks and electronic storage devices in November. He was also ordered to allow access, including passwords, to his social networking sites, email accounts and websites."

Big Dipper "Star" Actually a Sextuplet System 88

Posted by kdawson
from the toil-and-trouble dept.
Theosis sends word that an astronomer at the University of Rochester and his colleagues have made the surprise discovery that Alcor, one of the brightest stars in the Big Dipper, is actually two stars; and it is apparently gravitationally bound to the four-star Mizar system, making the whole group a sextuplet. This would make the Mizar-Alcor sextuplet the second-nearest such system known. The discovery is especially surprising because Alcor is one of the most studied stars in the sky. The Mizar-Alcor system has been involved in many "firsts" in the history of astronomy: "Benedetto Castelli, Galileo's protege and collaborator, first observed with a telescope that Mizar was not a single star in 1617, and Galileo observed it a week after hearing about this from Castelli, and noted it in his notebooks... Those two stars, called Mizar A and Mizar B, together with Alcor, in 1857 became the first binary stars ever photographed through a telescope. In 1890, Mizar A was discovered to itself be a binary, being the first binary to be discovered using spectroscopy. In 1908, spectroscopy revealed that Mizar B was also a pair of stars, making the group the first-known quintuple star system."

Modern Warfare 2 Not Recalled In Russia After All 94

Posted by Soulskill
from the it's-the-thought-that-counts dept.
thief21 writes "After claims that console versions Modern Warfare 2 had been recalled in Russia due to complaints from politicians and the gaming public over the infamous airport slaughter scene, it turns out the stories were completely untrue. Activision never released a console version of the game in Russia." Instead, they simply edited the notorious scene out of the PC version. They did this of their own volition, since Russia doesn't have a formal ratings committee.

Garlic Farmer Wards Off High-Speed Internet 475

Posted by samzenpus
from the attack-of-the-killer-garlic dept.
DocVM writes "A Nova Scotia farmer is opposing the construction of a microwave tower for fear it will eventually mutate his organic garlic crop. Lenny Levine, who has been planting and harvesting garlic by hand on his Annapolis Valley land since the 1970s, is afraid his organic crop could be irradiated if EastLink builds a microwave tower for wireless high-speed internet access a few hundred meters from his farm."

If this is timesharing, give me my share right now.