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Comment: Re:They got a lot of mileage out of that unspent $ (Score 1) 191

by ReallyEvilCanine (#46406097) Attached to: PETA Abandons $1 Million Prize For Artificial Chicken

Abusing chickens using existing infrastructure is by far the cheapest option. If it wasn't, the massive ag industry would have already scienced up the cheaper meat analog.

That rationale is why we only get energy from horses... I mean steam... I meant oil...

It's also why we still can't fly heavier-than-air craft. Well, not more than a few hundred feet... certainly not distances over 100 miles...
OK, well definitely not across oceans...
Fine, but flying them for days on end is utterly impossible

This comment was a lot cleaner and cleverer with the <s[trike]> tag, no longer available on /.

Comment: They got a lot of mileage out of that unspent $1m (Score 5, Interesting) 191

by ReallyEvilCanine (#46394691) Attached to: PETA Abandons $1 Million Prize For Artificial Chicken
The prize was bogus to begin with, as explained in this Slate article from 2008. In short, it wouldn't be paid out unless the contestant was selling a ton of the stuff in stores and restaurants across 10 states over three months... at the same price as real chicken.

Science prizes are supposed to encourage development of things not yet commercially viable; this was a phony small tip for someone already successful. "Phony", because even if someone had the breakthrough needed on the day after this was announced, there's no way in hell that it could be approved for use and on market shelves in time to meet even the extended deadline.

And then there were the contest requirements, including full disclosure of ingredients and methods (trade secrets), carte blanche use of any- and everything related for PeTA's promotional purposes, rules subject to change without notice, and so on.

This was never a serious offer, just serious marketing, something PeTA mastered long ago. This "prize" retraction just got them some more free air time and, no doubt, some new members & donations... saith an older and hopefully wiser former member & supporter.

Comment: Problem: not loans, it's profit-seeking schools (Score 3, Interesting) 597

by ReallyEvilCanine (#46244791) Attached to: Financing College With a Tax On All Graduates
Even if institutions are non-profit or not-for-profit, cost have been running amok. Schools are paying outrageous sums to executive staff (but -- surprise, surprise -- not to teachers) and spending money hand-over-fist on projects and buildings and anything else they can think of. As long as this spending remains unchecked the best financing plans in the world can't and won't fix the situation.

Comment: Not BIG but OVERREACHING gov't [was Re:Cost] (Score 5, Interesting) 473

by ReallyEvilCanine (#46214717) Attached to: Ugly Trends Threaten Aviation Industry
Along with FAA bullshit like increased ramp checks and the resulting harsh punishment for the most minor of infractions (OhNOES! There's an old sectional map buried under the back seat!), the biggest killer is -- not surprisingly -- DHS. Loads of additional bullshit regulations, security theatre, outright bullying. The surprise searches-- conducted under any auspice (ICE, CBP, general Tairism) -- are claimed (currently untested in court) to be superconstitutional, meaning they do this without warrant, court order, active investigation, or any other reason. And in inspecting the aircraft they also inspect all private contents of all pax, not just that of the owner or pilot being run.

Here's a story from last September that no one saw. Pay careful attention to the harassment about 2/3 of the way down:

Gabriel Silverstein of New York flies using flight plans as standard procedure, said the Iowa state troopers who detained him in Iowa City this spring were more blatant [than those in another case]. “It was, ‘We are inspecting your plane,’ not, ‘May we search your plane?’ ” Mr. Silverstein said.

In the two-hour encounter one of the lawmen advised him to confess to possessing “a little personal-use dope and it’ll be all over and easy.” Mr. Silverstein said he was hardly about to make such a confession, considering that he refrains from drinking coffee, much less anything illegal.

The Iowa City stop was the second for him in four days. Mr. Silverstein also had been visited by two Customs agents in Hobart, Okla., during a fuel stop on the outbound leg of a business trip from New Jersey to California and back with his husband. They checked his paperwork and quickly inspected his baggage while he fueled the plane, he said.

That's a pretty damned clear set-up for a slam-dunk civil forfeiture case with a bonus uncontested drug possession charge.

Comment: Re:Government Regulation?? (Score 1) 385

There is a legal mandate: suitability to task. TOS/EULA be damned (or at least finally tried properly in court), they have contractually obligated themselves to provide the necessary materials (hardware/firmware) in making a sale/lease/licensing agreement and, as bugs are exposed and updates required, demonstrated a failure at the "manufacturing" level for which they are liable. It's only going to take one large customer and an otherwise slow news week to resolve this one.

Comment: Re:What assholes (Score 1) 142

It sounds like all Oracle is doing is following the license.

I'd go with "enforcing" over "following", which is what they demand of others. I don't see any difference between this and the whole TomorrowNow fiasco. For those who weren't playing along back then, TomorrowNow was a company which grabbed up a bunch of Siebel people and tried to compete with Siebel supporting Siebel software. At the time, support contracts were required and cost an additional ~30% on top of the insane annual license fees. Dumber still, SAP bought TN knowing exactly what they were doing.

TomorrowNow (illegally) downloaded every last bit of Siebel software, first from Siebel's servers, then from Oracle's after the take-over. They also got their customers to download customer-specific and locked software (special builds and patches) for them <boggle>, which they'd diff against the previous patches so that they could provide their customers with updates outside of official channels (which were unavailable because the customers had stopped paying for support). And in the end they were doing it from a bank of SAP servers on a single IP block.

Fast forward to today. Another company is taking another company's proprietary software, and this time there seems to be a bit of whack-a-mole in play, since players in the current suit target may have come from previous defendants. If you read the linked articles, you see that the only claim dismissed in a previous suit was about the third-party provider "transferring" credentials; simply obtaining and using them on behalf of the customer as an agent wasn't illegal and so the charge was tossed while the rest of the claims are in litigation.

Copyright. Property laws. Oracle may be all sorts of evil but this one doesn't appear to be overreach. Anyone is allowed to provide Solaris and Java support but they can't do it with someone else's stuff.

Comment: Re:Not neccesairly (Score 3, Informative) 324

The "denigration of religion" is a messy situation which still needs clear legal decisions; this case might lead to one.
Denying the Holocaust is illegal here in Germany not because of opinion but because it is a false statement, clearly and irrefutably documented. However, what was supposed to be the big deciding case -- Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff in Austria -- was denied because her statements weren't determined not to be simply thoe of fact:

It is the opinion of the Court that defaming Mohammad was a primary purpose of the seminars, rather than the purported purpose of providing factual knowledge of Islam. Thus, the seminars have made no meaningful contribution to discussions that would be of public interest, but instead had a primary purpose of defaming Mohammad, an icon of a legally recognized religion.

Secular as so many EU countries are, there are problems due to "legally recognised religion", a natural progression stemming from the inclusion of some sort of religion in the countries' constitutions.

Comment: Weeds first, THEN interesting plants (Score 2) 193

by ReallyEvilCanine (#45480219) Attached to: NASA's Next Frontier: Growing Plants On the Moon
You'd think NASA didn't know about taking baby steps, as if they'd gone to the Moon first and decided to work on that boring stable orbit shit later. They should be growing crabgrass, dandelions, and kudzu first. Shit that you have to fight like hell to get to stop growing. Shit that doesn't care how badly you treat it or how poor the conditions are. Bonus: dandelion leaves and kudzu are edible.

While regolith ain't soil, it can be used as a basic substrate which hearty weeds wouldn't complain about.

Comment: Our public transportation never got the memo (Score 2) 294

by ReallyEvilCanine (#45465923) Attached to: How Munich Abandoned Microsoft for Open Source
Tens of millions spent on new screens which provide less information than the old flippy-type info on upcoming and incoming trains/subways and they're down all the fucking time. ALL the time. Usually with the typical NT error message in a grey box on a blue screen. Or there's a dump and some module names.

Comment: More non-news superlatives! (Score 0) 396

by ReallyEvilCanine (#44891795) Attached to: <em>GTA V</em> Makes $800 Million In 24 Hours
It ain't news, especially not nerds who understand the concept of "constant dollars". It certainly ain't any sort of stuff that matters. It's time to change the tagline to:

Look! Shiny!

This place isn't even SCO/GNEW-Lunix advocacy anymore. "Quickies" were long ago ceded to reddiggit and stories about Microsoft are neutral to positive/pleasant. Five bucks says Taco is running Win8.

Stellar rays prove fibbing never pays. Embezzlement is another matter.