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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:Passed Time (Score 2) 103

by s_p_oneil (#49172767) Attached to: Supreme Court Gives Tacit Approval To Warrantless DNA Collection

It's unlikely to happen because what you said is mostly BS. A smart phone contains all kinds of sensitive information like logs of where you've been and of private conversations between you and several other people (which may or may not be related to a case the police are investigating). Your DNA can't possibly contain information like that. Today it might be able to tell the police you have blonde hair and blue eyes, but so can your driver's license. Sure it might eventually be able to let the police generate a picture of what you look like based on your DNA, but once again so can your driver's license. It might even be able to tell the police whether you have a small penis (or something along those lines), but I'm pretty sure they won't be able to use information like that against you in court. ;-)

It really is no different than collecting fingerprints at a crime scene, semen from a rape victim, etc.

Comment: Re:Zombies versus Predators (Score 3, Insightful) 240

Humans are the most deadly predators that the planet has ever had. Killing stuff is what we're really really good at. Making weapons is something we're really really good at.

Actually, making tools and organizing labor is we're really good at. I personally have never killed anything larger than a bug in my life; I suspect a lot of other people haven't either. I've never had to, because there have always been other people who are willing to do those unpleasant tasks for me, in exchange for modest amounts of money.

Granted, I could learn those skills (and others) if I had to, but it would probably take me some days or weeks before I got good at it. It's not clear I would survive long enough to learn them.

So yes, humanity is the most deadly predator the planet has ever had. Any particular human being, OTOH, most likely is not -- we're more likely to be the most effective C++ programmer the planet has ever had, or the best Fedex deliveryman, or some other not-so-helpful-during-the-zombie-apocalypse skill.

Comment: Re:And blocked in court in 3, 2, 1 . . . (Score 1) 227

by SEE (#49162143) Attached to: As Big As Net Neutrality? FCC Kills State-Imposed Internet Monopolies

First, under the test used in both the majority and concurring opinions in Nixon v. Missouri Municipal League, the enacted legislation must have specifically named municipal entities in order to affect them; general wording (such as "any entity") doesn't work, and no executive action can change that.

Second, Federal law supersedes state law precisely insofar as the Federal government is allowed to legislate in the area at all, and the majority opinion in Nixon v. Missouri Municipal League says Federal law can't make states allow their own municipalities to sell Internet.

Comment: Re:One Word ... (Score 1) 227

by SEE (#49162117) Attached to: As Big As Net Neutrality? FCC Kills State-Imposed Internet Monopolies

The Federal Government can no more authorize a municipality to provide Internet service outside its "imaginary boundaries" than it may authorize a municipality to enforce its city ordinances outside its "imaginary boundaries". The geographic scope of the powers of municipalities is an internal matter of the organization of the state government for the same reasons the existence of ans such powers is an internal matter of the organization of the state government.

+ - Virgin Media censors talk of "bufferbloat" on their discussion forums->

Submitted by mtaht
mtaht (603670) writes "Given that bufferbloat is now fixed by fq_codel and the sqm-scripts for anyone that cares to install openwrt and derivatives on their home routers (or use any random linux box for the job), AND standardization efforts for the relevant algorithms near completion in the IETF, I went and posted a short, helpful message about how to fix it on a bufferbloat-related thread on Virgin Media's cable modems... And they deleted the post, and banned my IP... for "advertising". I know I could post again via another IP, and try to get them to correct their mistake, but it is WAY more fun to try to annoy them into more publically acknowledging their enormous bufferbloat problems and to release a schedule for their fixes. Naturally I figured the members of slashdot could help out Virgin and their customers understand their bufferbloat problems better. My explanations of how they can fix their bufferbloat, are now, here."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:And blocked in court in 3, 2, 1 . . . (Score 2) 227

by SEE (#49159513) Attached to: As Big As Net Neutrality? FCC Kills State-Imposed Internet Monopolies

Just like states are only part of the country?

No, not "just like" that at all. There are three basic classes of entity in US constitutional law - the Federal Government, the states, and individual people. States are not organs of the Federal Government, but legally separate entities with independent rights and powers. On the other hand, municipalities are mere organs of the state.

Comment: Re:Messaging problem hiding as a whiteboard proble (Score 1) 162

by Jeremi (#49158745) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Whiteboard Substitutes For Distributed Teams?

Are you trying to imply that they way people communicate is forever fixed in stone and cannot be changed or improved upon? Don't you think that's a little shortsighted?

Sorry, could you rephrase your questions? I didn't understand what you were asking, as I was unable to see your facial expression as you were typing them.

Comment: Re:One Word ... (Score 4, Informative) 227

by SEE (#49157235) Attached to: As Big As Net Neutrality? FCC Kills State-Imposed Internet Monopolies

Given the 8-1 decision in Nixon v. Missouri Municipal League in 2004, it's essentially certain that this FCC action will be overturned by the courts. The FCC doesn't have a legal leg to stand on.

In that case, the Supreme Court ruled that federal law did not and could not preempt a Missouri state law that prohibited municipalities from providing Internet service. Of the eight-member majority in that case, five (Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, Scalia, and Thomas) are still on the court.

Comment: And blocked in court in 3, 2, 1 . . . (Score 2, Interesting) 227

by SEE (#49156927) Attached to: As Big As Net Neutrality? FCC Kills State-Imposed Internet Monopolies

As a constitutional matter, municipalities do not have any independent existence; they are organs of the state governments. Municipal governments only have whatever powers states choose to give them, and the federal government may not commandeer a state government. So if a state chooses to deny its municipalities the authority to sell Internet access (or sell it below a certain price), then no declaration from the FCC can give the municipality that power, nor require the state to give a municipality that power.

So, all this vote means is the FCC majority has decided to waste a bunch of taxpayer dollars losing a lawsuit.

Comment: Re:Rocketboard (Score 1) 162

by nmb3000 (#49156487) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Whiteboard Substitutes For Distributed Teams?

Pretty interesting concept and if it works as well in the real world as the video portrays, it could be very cool to use. I was all ready to sign up for early access and talk about it with my team on Monday, until I saw your comment below that it only works on Apple devices.

In the tech and development world (especially in the trenches) Android rules, and our office is no exception. What a downer.

Comment: Re:From his twitter account (Score 4, Informative) 407

by nmb3000 (#49148629) Attached to: Leonard Nimoy Dies At 83

He died at 83; smoking probably didn't kill him so much as being old.

Considering the cause of death was end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, I'd guess smoking played a major part. Says Wikipedia:

Tobacco smoking is the most common cause of COPD, with a number of other factors such as air pollution and genetics playing a smaller role.

But it's a sad day regardless.

"Well I don't see why I have to make one man miserable when I can make so many men happy." -- Ellyn Mustard, about marriage