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Comment: Re:Easy up now (Score 1) 231

by Mitreya (#47904277) Attached to: School Installs Biometric Fingerprint System For Cafeteria

Secondly, the biometrics are just an additional method of payment, it's entirely optional. No one's stopping you from paying in cash.

Oh, yes, because optional things never become mandatory. Only 10 years ago, the EZ-pass highway electronic payment system was optional. It even offered a discount (initially).

Now, there are several bridges where cash payment has been eliminated altogether. And many, many locations where the only available cash lane requires extra 15 minutes of my time.

I am talking about US, but I am sure such "optional" feature creep is an international thing.

Comment: Re:That'll teach them (Score 2) 50

by Mitreya (#47821039) Attached to: Verizon Pays $7.4 Million To Settle FCC Privacy Investigation

How fast do you suppose Verizon wireless makes 7.4 million? 3 hours? 4?

Also, how much compensation did the affected customers receive?
Even if the punishment were painful, why does FCC get all of it?

Verizon has agreed to notify customers of their opt-out rights on every bill for the next three years.

Oh, well, never mind. I guess customers got something out of this settlement after all. And in the fourth year, Verizon doesn't even have to notify them about their opt-out rights?

Comment: Normal now (Score 5, Insightful) 164

by Mitreya (#47640585) Attached to: F-Secure: Xiaomi Smartphones Do Secretly Steal Your Data

Xiaomi smartphones do in fact upload user data without their permission/knowledge

Considering that half the apps out there (and I mean benign/legitimate apps!) seem to upload user data without user's knowledge, that is not so shocking. Once you start using your phone, several apps will start siphoning your data.

Recent "simplification" of Android Google-store permissions means that I don't even know how much of a permission I am giving to a new app.

Comment: Re:Good riddance (Score 5, Insightful) 790

They have an obligation to report child porn if they find it, but they don't have an obligation to look.

Actually, naive me was thinking that they have an obligation NOT TO LOOK.
I also have a storage room rental -- does that mean the owner is allowed to do random checks for stolen goods? Just in case?

Comment: Re:Let them drink! (Score 2) 532

by Mitreya (#47329359) Attached to: NYC Loses Appeal To Ban Large Sugary Drinks

people who have bad eating habits

None of this precludes bad eating habits though. It just makes it more expensive or cumbersome (nor does it help people who drink several medium drinks throughout the day). So sounds like pointless grandstanding

Education is the way to help. I think the rules requiring posting calories on the menu had done a lot more to improve health than any such stupid ban. And no one contested that in court.

You can't really force people to make healthy choices by legislation. Information/labeling helps though.

Comment: Re:Happened before, will happen again (Score 1) 382

by Mitreya (#47174871) Attached to: High Frequency Trading and Finance's Race To Irrelevance

Dutch tulip panic in the 1700's ... The world moves on and financiers quickly explore new avenues, leaving the old behind

Ah, but did the people who lost on tulip investment get bailed out back then? Seems like the new way is to save the financial institutions because their collapse would be too damaging to the world.

Comment: Re:Mortgages are public records (Score 2, Informative) 294

Mortgages are public records. State and local governments already have all that data. Anyone can look it up.

I don't think mortgages are public record. Sales of houses and their prices are public record, but that is a far cry from knowing your actual mortgage (maybe you paid cash?)

There's a lot of funny stuff going on in the foreclosure area, but nobody has been analysing that as a "big data" problem.

Yes, "big data in a cloud with web 2.0" is the solution. It is reasonably known what "funny stuff" goes on, but instead of cracking down on these practices, we are going to do reports. Reports are needed to identify the problem when it is a mystery.

Comment: I like the non-commital announcement (Score 2) 83

by Mitreya (#47136723) Attached to: Oregon vs. Oracle: the Battle of Blame Heats Up

She did not commit to filing suit, but said, "I share your determination to recover every dollar to which Oregon is entitled."

You can say a lot of words without promising anything. I particularly like "recover every dollar to which Oregon is entitled". It could be $0 or $1 or $100M, because she didn't mention how much that is in her opinion.

Comment: Nope. (Score 5, Funny) 221

Does a manufacturer have the right to "brick" certain integral services just because the end user doesn't feel comfortable sharing a bunch of info with LG and other, unnamed third parties?

Of course they don't.
I am sure that just in 3-4 years, after a lawsuit, affected customers will be able to get a $7.50 credit good towards purchase of a new LG TV.

Comment: Re:Not First Amendment (Score 1) 160

You CAN be sued for any ACTUAL damages DIRECTLY related to your speech, IF it was defamatory / libelous.

Not disagreeing with you...
However, you can be SUCCESSFULLY sued for actual damages, blah blah. Without that, you can STILL be sued albeit unsuccessfully. An eventually-lost lawsuit would still cost you a lot of money to defend yourself. Maybe more money than whatever damages you are accused of.

"In matters of principle, stand like a rock; in matters of taste, swim with the current." -- Thomas Jefferson

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