Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

+ - Patent Issued Covering Phone Notifications of Delivery Time and Invoice Quantity->

Submitted by eldavojohn
eldavojohn writes: The staggering ingenuity of the US Patent system has again been showcased by the EFF's analysis of recent patents. This week's patent and follow up patent cover the futuristic innovative idea that when you order something, you can update your order and add additional amounts to your order while it's being processed. But wait, it gets even more innovative! You may one day be able to even to notify when you would like it delivered — ON YOUR PHONE. I know, you're busy wiping all that brain matter off your screen as your head seems to have exploded. Well, it turns out that inventor and patent holder Scott Horstemeyer (aka Eclipse IP, LLC of Delray Beach, FL) found no shortage of targets to go after with his new patents. It appears Tiger Fitness (and every other online retailer) was sending notices to customers about shipments. Did I mention Professional waste-of-space Horstemeyer is a lawyer too? But not just a regular lawyer, a "SUPER lawyer" from the same firm that patented social networking in 2007, sued Uber for using location finding technologies in 2013 and sued Overstock.com as well as a small time shoe seller for using shipping notifications in 2014.
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Can't wait to get this installed in my house (Score 1) 502

by RobinH (#49594301) Attached to: Tesla Announces Home Battery System
I also live in Ontario and did a calculation for that based on prices of Chinese lithium ion batteries at the time (6 months ago). Back of the napkins said it would be greater than 10 years to get a payback, but the prices are still dropping. I'd say this kind of stuff is going to happen soon. I recently installed a whole home power monitor for interest sake, and honestly for $3500 even if it paid itself back to break-even over the 10 year warranty period it would be an interesting project to take on. Still I imaging the switching equipment you need to install along with this is pretty serious cost, and I don't think this comes with a charger/inverter either.

Comment: Non Sequitor (Score 5, Insightful) 334

by eldavojohn (#49539223) Attached to: Drone Killed Hostages From U.S. and Italy, Drawing Obama Apology

I'm not disappointed at all. Drones are so much better than actually invading Pakistan, and reduces the number of kids that get killed in war.

I never got the hate for drones in the first place. Why would you want to launch a ground invasion instead, which means MORE kids getting killed?

Sure, if you want to kill someone, you're right. I think the argument against drones is that if you push a button and someone dies on the other side of the Earth and you didn't have to go to war to do that ... well, fast forward two years and you're just sitting there hitting that button all day long. "The quarter solution" or whatever you want to call it is still resulting in deaths and, as we can see here, we're not 100% sure whose deaths that button is causing. Even if we study the targets really really hard.

And since Pakistan refuses to own their Al Queda problem, we have to take care of it for them.

No, no we don't. You might say "Al Queda hit us now we must hunt them to the ends of the Earth" but it doesn't mean that diplomacy and sovereignty just get flushed down the toilet. Those country borders will still persist despite all your shiny new self-appointed world police officer badges. Let me see if I can explain this to you: If David Koresh had set off bombs in a Beijing subway and then drones lit up Waco like the fourth of July and most of the deaths were Branch Davidians, how would you personally feel about that? Likewise, if Al Queda is our problem and we do that, we start to get more problems. Now, that said, it's completely true that Pakistan's leadership has privately condoned these strikes while publicly lambasting the US but that's a whole different problem.

Also, we must always assume that war = killing kids. The fact that people think kids shouldn't be killed in war basically gives people more of an incentive to go to war in the first place. When Bush invaded Iraq, the public should have asked "OK, how many kids are we expected to kill?" Because all war means killing kids. There has never been a war without killing kids.

The worst people are the ones that romanticize war, by saying war is clean and happy and everyone shakes hands at the end. War is the worst, most horrible thing, and we need to make sure people understand that, or they'll continue to promote war.

Yep, think of the children -- that's why we should use drone strikes, right? Look, war means death. Death doesn't discriminate and neither does war. If you're hung up on it being okay to take a life the second that male turns 18, you're pretty much morally helpless anyway. War is bad. Drone strikes are bad. There's enough bad in there for them both to be bad. This isn't some false dichotomy where it's one or the other. It's only one or the other if you're hellbent on killing people.

News flash: you can argue against drone strikes and also be opposed to war at the same time. It does not logically follow that since you're against drone strikes, you're pro war and pro killing children. That's the most unsound and absurd flow of logic I've seen in quite some time.

Comment: No, This Is Important for People to See (Score 5, Insightful) 256

by eldavojohn (#49536145) Attached to: Wellness App Author Lied About Cancer Diagnosis

Wait. A person who made dubious claims that had no scientific backing to them was actually lying? What next? Water is wet?!!

I think pretty much everyone but the nutjob, true believers in psuedo-science knew all along that this woman was lying.

So you're saying everyone knew she was lying about her charity donations as well? Or was it only the charities that knew that? From the article:

The 26-year-old's popular recipe app, which costs $3.79, has been downloaded 300,000 times and is being developed as one of the first apps for the soon-to-be-released Apple Watch. Her debut cook book The Whole Pantry, published by Penguin in Australia last year, will soon hit shelves in the United States and Britain.

So you're saying the 300,000 downloads are by people that knew they were downloading the app architected by a liar? And they were paying $3.79 to Apple and this liar for a recipe app that contain recipes that someone lied about helping her cure cancer? And you're saying that everyone at Apple that featured her app on the Apple Watch knew they were showing a snake oil app on their brand new shiny device? And that the people at Penguin did all their fact checking on any additional information this cookbook might contain about Belle Gibson's alleged cancer survival? And that everybody involved in these events know society's been parading around a fucking liar and rewarding her with cash money while she basically capitalizes on a horrendous disease that afflicts millions of people worldwide ... that she never had?

No, this is not the same as "water is wet" and it needs to be shown that holistic medicine is temporarily propped up on a bed of anecdotal lies ... anybody who accepts it as the sole cure for their ailment is putting their health in the hands of such charlatans and quacks.

Comment: Oh Look, a Car Analogy for Last Week's Story! (Score 1) 649

by eldavojohn (#49514253) Attached to: Automakers To Gearheads: Stop Repairing Cars
Why don't the automakers just seek refuge under the DMCA from all those evil automobile hackers? Clearly, figuring out how your car works is a direct attack on the very hard work and property of those automakers.

Time to pass a bill state by state. I'm the sure the invisible hand of the free market will line all the right politicians' pockets to rush those through. Hopefully someday we won't be able to own our cars and we can go back to the Ma Bell days when every phone was rented.

Comment: Re:The third factor (Score 1) 385

by RobinH (#49502783) Attached to: Can High Intelligence Be a Burden Rather Than a Boon?

There is some truth to this. I am a "successful" programmer (in my opinion, since I get paid to do it and people are generally happy with the results). My job every day consists of a series of frustrating problems where the solution is not obvious, but I'm sure it should be possible to solve it. A 3rd party library causes a heap corruption about once a week, or customers refuse to send data files in a consistent format. The print spooler service keeps stopping.

People come to me with the *simplest* of problems, and they can't even be bothered to type their question into Google, let alone *read* the results that come up! Most people aren't even willing to try it or learn for themselves, just waiting for someone's permission, I guess.

"It just doesn't work" is such a commonly repeated phrase, right next to "the Internet's not working". What doesn't work? Did you try doing it like this? Did it work yesterday? Has it ever worked? Can anyone else get it to work? Don't you want to know how it works? Do you even want it to work, or are you just relieved that you have something external to blame for why you couldn't get your work done?

Seriously, the key to success is just not giving up when you know something's possible.

Comment: Difference (Score 3, Interesting) 254

by RobinH (#49501257) Attached to: The Upsides of a Surveillance Society
There's a difference between a "surveillance society" which is where a small class of people or organizations owns or has access to all the surveillance, or just a "public society" where lots of private individuals have cameras, phones, etc., and decent means of communication. In the latter case, it's the people (society) who actually have the power. It's much more democratic, i.e. "I'm publicly shaming this person because the vast majority of people feel their behavior is unacceptable." In the former, it's about centralized power, i.e. "Make this person's life miserable because they're a threat to my power." I'm all for distributed cameras and communications, I just wish people would keep the data local by default, and not provide it so willingly to 3rd parties to aggregate it.

+ - ESA Rebukes EFF's Request to Exempt Abandoned Games from Some DMCA Rules->

Submitted by eldavojohn
eldavojohn writes: It's 2015 and the EFF is still submitting requests to alter or exempt certain applications of the draconian DMCA. One such request concerns abandoned games that utilized or required online servers for matchmaking or play (PDF warning) and the attempts taken to archive those games. A given examples is Madden '09 that had its servers shut down a mere one and a half years after release. Another is Gamespy and the EA & Nintendo titles that were not migrated to other servers. I'm sure everyone can come up with a once cherished game that required online play that is now abandoned and lost to the ages. While the EFF is asking for exemptions for museums and archivists, the ESA appears to take the stance that it's hacking and all hacking is bad. In prior comments (PDF warning), the ESA has called reverse engineering a proprietary game protocol "a classic wolf in sheep’s clothing" as if allowing this evil hacking will loose Sodom & Gomorrah upon the industry. Fellow gamers, these years now that feel like the golden age of online gaming will be the dark ages of games as historians of the future try to recreate what online play was like now for many titles.
Link to Original Source

Comment: Yep Problem Solved, Shut Down All Further Research (Score 1) 477

Pedestrians will have to learn new skills to avoid careening out of control cars that do not recognize the pedestrians....

.

new jobs will open up for people who have to dig cars out of snowbanks

a new employment category autonomous assistants will "drive" the self-driving cars in poor weather conditions

Yep that's right because once the pattern recognition has mastered the easy stuff -- which it seems to be close to doing -- they'll shut down all development on tackling edge cases and anomalies. That's how it works, right? We're still driving cars with shoe brakes and using regular picture framing glass so our bodies are cut up in an accident, right?

I mean, some of these problems like icy roads and snow might make for unsolvable problems but we already have cars that can detect loss of traction and go into traction control mode. Have you ever heard of ABS? Developments like that will likely come along for the special cases of autonomous driving. If they don't, it's certainly not a death knell on the technology. At this point, I'll accept a 95% solution.

+ - Chinese Certificate Authority CNNIC Is Dropped from Google Products

Submitted by eldavojohn
eldavojohn writes: A couple weeks ago, Google contacted the CNNIC (China's CA) to alert them of a problem regarding the delegated power of issuing fraudulent certificates for domains (in fact this came to light after fraudulent certificates were issued for Google's domains). Following this, Google decided to remove the CNNIC Root and EV CA as trusted CAs in its Chrome browser and all Google products. Today, the CNNIC responded to Google: "1. The decision that Google has made is unacceptable and unintelligible to CNNIC, and meanwhile CNNIC sincerely urge that Google would take users’ rights and interests into full consideration. 2. For the users that CNNIC has already issued the certificates to, we guarantee that your lawful rights and interests will not be affected." Mozilla is waiting to formulate a plan.

Comment: What an Embarrassingly Vapid Article (Score 5, Interesting) 477

Bottom line: we probably cannot imagine all the implications and collateral effects driverless cars will cause beginning early in 2020 for top-end and early adopters and progressively more widespread year after year until mid 2030 when these cars will be our major form of transportation.

That's it? That's your substance? Hell, why not try? Here are my own guesses:

  • Insurance companies will struggle to adjust. You know all those annoying GEICO commercials? Prepare to watch a lot less of them and if you're in the auto insurance business, now would be a good time to diversify. And if you're not in that business, prepare to enjoy not having to pay monthly on auto insurance. Huge plus for the economy.
  • Real Estate prices will fluctuate away from metropolises. Oh, 1,000 sq ft in a downtown townhouse is $1.5 million dollars? Or a nice house on 100 acres of land is $125,000 but it's one hour away from downtown? Yeah, I think I'll just take that hour drive twice a day and just watch netflix on my phone or read on my kindle or code on my laptop or even just sleep it.
  • Drunk driving/texting while driving/distracted driving will become ailments of the past. Lose your license? Afraid of going home from happy hour "buzzed"? Just buy an autonomous car. A lot less accidents too -- huge plus for society.
  • Organ sources will dry up. A lot of organs come from car & motorcycle accidents. Morbid but true. Need to up our game on printing organs in order to prepare for this.
  • If idiots connect their cars or the underlying system to the internet, people will end up at hacked destinations.
  • Parking will become a bigger business -- especially garages that work hand in hand with autonomous vehicles.

These are all, of course, many years off. But it is starting to look more and more inevitable.

A method of solution is perfect if we can forsee from the start, and even prove, that following that method we shall attain our aim. -- Leibnitz

Working...