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Comment: To take the opposite approach from most... (Score 2) 468

by Lord Bitman (#48912805) Attached to: Police Organization Wants Cop-Spotting Dropped From Waze App

I agree that this is free speech, and that police should not only be okay with people reporting on their location, but should be *required* to report their location publicly, constantly.

But that's not what this post is about. Others are saying "maybe if police didn't abuse their power, people wouldn't want to circumvent police and speed traps"

To take the opposite approach: maybe if speed limits were not only sane, but actually *enforced*, people wouldn't care so much about speed traps.

Speeds traps being a thing is really a sign that something is fundamentally wrong. Speeding should not be a thing which everyone does, unless there's a speed trap. Speeding should be a thing which, when it happens, everyone on the road reports the speeder, because they are creating a dangerous situation (just as you might call the police to report a chemical truck on fire).

If we live in a world where a law exists that *only police care about*, that's a problem.

Comment: "Ends justify the means" is usually meant to imply (Score 1) 125

by Lord Bitman (#48456593) Attached to: 2014 Hour of Code: Do Ends Justify Disney Product Placement Means?

"Ends justify the means" is usually meant to imply that the means are bad, but potentially excusable.

What exactly is wrong with the "means" here? I hate Disney's copyright practices, but other than that, I can't fault them. They have a dedication to quality which I wish were seen elsewhere.

Comment: SEO (Score 1) 120

by Lord Bitman (#44629179) Attached to: Obama, Romney Data Scientists Strike Out On Their Own

Search Engine Optimisation all boils down to, in the end, "make websites that humans want to find, and search engines will tend over time to detect sites like yours". The SEO best-practices change all the time, but the ones which stick around tend also to be general usability best-practices.

There doesn't seem to be a similar rule for elections, ie "make candidates that humans want to govern them, and people will tend over time to elect candidates like yours".

Perhaps this is because nobody has actually tried such a strategy, but I expect it has more to do with the ideas that:
  1. having lots of choices and few choosers (the choosers being chosen by the masses) tends to work-out better than having lots of choosers (the masses) and few choices
  2. letting people benefit from more than one "winner" tends to work-out better than picking the top choice and throwing out everything else.

Comment: Re:Solution: Use standard charger (Score 1) 457

by Lord Bitman (#44389405) Attached to: After a User Dies, Apple Warns Against Counterfeit Chargers

I came here to say exactly this. Apple is the one who ensured that the only manufacturers selling chargers for their products were those with no accountability.
If they did not use absurd proprietary designs, then most consumers would buy chargers from companies which have such qualifications as "an address" and "a name".

Comment: Really surprised (Score 2) 135

by Lord Bitman (#44358895) Attached to: Google Launches Cloud Printer Service For Windows

As someone who's been trying to use Cloud Print since it launched, I had assumed that the project was abandoned long ago. It has always been extremely flakey, it never "just works", etc. When it works, it's great. When it doesn't, you are left staring at a screen identical to when it does, with no diagnostics, and no sign of potential progress.

There are also some rather insane missing features, like the inability to rename printers (eg: if two of your friends have an HP DeskJet 1050a, and they both left it with the default name, have fun trying to decide which one to print on. Or if they both renamed their printers, but gave them sensible names like "HP (Upstairs)")

CloudPrint was a nice idea which Google has given zero attention. I do not expect things to suddenly work now that Windows is in the mix.

Comment: Re:Crap, the sky is falling (Score 3, Insightful) 334

by Lord Bitman (#43708405) Attached to: Last Forking Warning For Bitcoin

This isn't an issue of "two different currencies". What other time in history has a government issued a new currency, exchanged the "old currency" for the "new currency", and *let you keep* the "old currency" when handing you new currency?

The inability to deal with prolonged netsplits sanely is a fundamental limitation of the Bitcoin protocol.

Comment: Re:Use Firefox? Get Self Destructing Cookies add-o (Score 1) 98

by Lord Bitman (#43619489) Attached to: Even the Ad Industry Doesn't Know Who's Tracking You

Wow, a post about cookies from a privacy nut which I actually agree with!

Expiring at the end of a browser session is indeed a good default cookie policy, and I see nothing wrong with a pop-up at the top of the browser window, similar to the "Do you want to save your password?", ActiveX warnings, etc, which states "The website at xnd.garbledgunk.adserver.goo[NOT VERIFIED] would like us to send data [view data] whenever this site is accessed, until September 1st, 2013. It gives the reason "Enhanced Browsing Experience". Do you want to allow this? [Yes] [No] [Send data, but forget it when I close my browser]"

Real Users find the one combination of bizarre input values that shuts down the system for days.

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