Slashdot stories can be listened to in audio form via an RSS feed, as read by our own robotic overlord.


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:Kickstarter's Fundamental Problem (Score 2) 211

The fundamental problem with Kickstarter is that there's no accountability for handling the money.

Only if you completely, and entirely, miss what it's used for. If someone wants to set up a kickstarter equivalent where projects must be independently audited, project plans validated, and investors have some legally watertight form of ownership as well as power to intervene then they are welcome to set it up.

Here's one of the projects highlighted on Kickstarter's frontpage: Help send The Kinsey Sicks to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival! They want ~$24,500 to go to and perform at a Festival. They aren't trying to sell a product, they are asking fans to help them. Some of the higher pledges include getting a CD or some such. Why on earth does a project like this need drowning in bureaucracy (the lack of which is what you claim is Kickstarter's weakness) because some other people naively think Kickstarter is a zero risk pre-order store?

Comment: Re:Insurance (Score 1) 211

The rewards offered on kickstarter are pitiful given the risk to the capital, and complete lack of upside if the product is successful.

If someone is Kickstarting something that you think want to be made, but isn't going to be made otherwise, then the reward can be perfectly sufficient. Kickstarting isn't about becoming an investor in businesses (there are other platforms for that), nor is it a pre-order marketplace. It does what is says it does, and 90%+ of the bitching I hear about it is people who think it is something it clearly isn't.

Comment: Re:I don't think Obama is really paying attention (Score 1) 523

Isreal will do whatever it feels like doing to expand it's borders and, secondarily, defend itself. Helping Muslims will not factor into it.

I disagree vehemently with a huge amount of what Israel does but they clearly aren't completely stupid. Jordan may not be the ideal neighbour but it is on the other side of around half their land border and infinitely better as a neighbour than Lebanon. Israel isn't going to just sit by and let Jordan get overrun by people who actively want to annihilate them, must easier to provide support to Jordan and fight in their territory.

Comment: Re:Last straw? (Score 1) 523

No. Appeasement in the context of WWII was the other European powers lack of response to German militarisation and its actions in Czechoslovakia. It should be highlighted that the American president at the time openly praised Chamberlain for appeasing Germany. People who think appeasement was a mistake see Poland as the consequence of this (Germany got away with earlier actions and thought it could get away with this), but the response to Hitler's invasion of Poland was to go to war.

If you're going to use historical examples then at least stick to the established facts.

Comment: Re:Last straw? (Score 1) 523

Well we thought we'd copy America's lead but you dive headfist into dumb-fuck un-winnable wars so fast we never got the chance. Also, before you get too smug about the mistake European leaders made with appeasement 60 years ago, look at how your own country was reacting to the exact same threat at the same time.

Comment: Re:Just y'know... reconnect them spinal nerves (Score 1) 209

It's based on the concept that a doctor should first 'Do no harm.' Let's say there are two people experiencing organ failure, one paralyzed, one not. In such a case, the probable outcome for the able-bodied person is worse than the paralyzed person. It would even be a net benefit for the paralyzed person if some limb function is restored, whereas for the able-bodied person it would inevitably result in decreased motor function at best.

If the surgery on a paralyzed person is successful, with respect to limb function, they can be no worse off even if no nerve function is preserved.

Comment: Re:I just must be drunk. (Score 1) 98

by N1AK (#49146103) Attached to: Fighting Scams Targeting the Elderly With Old-School Tech
I still find it hard to comprehend why more isn't done to protect people from scammers and pursue those who run these scams. A government can easily put eye-bleedingly large fines on any company who provides a phone number that is used for scamming. This would make the companies who provide the UK/US/etc numbers on the end of overseas scams far more cautious about who they provide them to.

Then you're only left with foreign calls which a) cost scammers vastly more, b) already look very suspect, and c) can be dealt with by penalising countries that provide a safe-harbour to scammers.

Comment: Re:someone explain for the ignorant (Score 1) 449

by IndustrialComplex (#49086901) Attached to: Credit Card Fraud Could Peak In 2015 As the US Moves To EMV

When it comes to infrastructure, the frontrunner rapidly becomes the laggard. Someone building up their infrastructure from nothing can look at the forerunners and avoid their mistakes and include the latest technology while the forerunner has become dependent on the existing infrastructure so it must be maintained while the new system is built.

Consider a 'modern' road built in 1790. It would be wide enough for two carriages to pass, it would be paved in cobblestone, and would have amazing drainage that let the water flow off to the side rather than puddle up. Imagine you built out this road system for your entire city. Now Mr. McAdam comes along with his new paving system and your neighboring town that didn't get around to 'modernizing' their roads when you did now starts their own project. Their roads will be better in many respects. Do you tear up your old cobblestones and repave your roads? Or do you live with your system until it becomes a problem?

Fast forward 200 years. The amazing two lane carriageway is barely wide enough for a single modern car, the rights of way/easements have been established so houses are built up to the edge, and any upgrade to this road system is going to require not just regarding, but purchasing/condemning hundreds of properties. Compare that to a third world nation putting in their highway system. Lots of open space to utilize, no underground utilities to worry about rerouting or damaging, No overhead bridges built 60 years ago that require replacing (since they were only wide enough to span a 2 lane road not a 4 lane divided highway.

So something as simple as adding a new lane to an existing highway for 10 miles can end up costing more than putting in an entire 4 lane expressway for 50 miles if one was in a developed country and the latter was in an undeveloped country.

It's great to get new technology, but trailblazing is always more difficult than following the trailblazer.

Comment: Re:How do we know this is not parallel constructio (Score 1) 129

by N1AK (#49028327) Attached to: The Technologies That Betrayed Silk Road's Anonymity

I think it is safe to assume that from that moment on the name Ross Ulbricht led the suspect list and all effort was put in to linking DPR to Ross Ulbricht.

I also think it is likely that they caught him exactly as they said he did. That doesn't mean that they shouldn't be expected to keep records to show that is what in fact happened, and have their records audited to ensure they tell the truth. We're seeing far too many cases of things like the FBI protecting the police from having to reveal information about certain methods of surveillance to trust their word.

There are enough examples of very serious crimes, that don't get solved for decades and when they are that the quantity and obviousness of evidence is overwhelming; yet somehow it was missed at the time.

Comment: Re:How do we know this is not parallel constructio (Score 1) 129

by N1AK (#49023945) Attached to: The Technologies That Betrayed Silk Road's Anonymity

Sure, I suppose the NSA could have used magical spying technology to know everything about Dread Pirate Roberts, but whether they did or not, they didn't need to. He had left enough clues about DPR's identity scattered around in public to put him on a small list of suspects.

I don't intend to suggest something underhand happened, but I want to highlight what I feel is a flaw to this logic. Once you know someone has committed a crime it will be comparatively simple to find masses of evidence. Yes he might of left information around that could help narrow down suspects, or even incriminate himself, but that doesn't mean that it would have been found, noticed, and acted on.

Comment: Re:Consider the denominator (Score 0) 136

by N1AK (#49020891) Attached to: DEA Hands MuckRock a $1.4 Million Estimate For Responsive Documents

Those documents belong to us, they should be redacted when filed so that we can see them.

Pretty stupid logic. You're suggesting that the government spend $1.4 million redacting these documents, and hundreds of millions annually redacting all documents that could possibly be requested, in case they are requested, rather than spending the money when someone actually asks for it. You could make a case for arguing the government should be expected to pay the cost of redacting documents that the public are entitled to request, but that's a different issue.

He: Let's end it all, bequeathin' our brains to science. She: What?!? Science got enough trouble with their OWN brains. -- Walt Kelly