Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


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:The (in)justice system (Score 1) 291

some crimes go unpunished . . . since with a plea bargain you're punishing some other crime, not the one that really happened.

Um, no. If the evidence is airtight that a crime really happened, it's not nearly as likely to get plea-bargained in the first place. Otherwise, there is no "really happened."

Yeah, the law says that you shouldn't smoke marijuana.

Many, many crimes are plea bargained other than the drug possession crimes everyone in this thread is harping on. It's a convenient scapegoat, but even if all drug possession were legalized tomorrow we would still need plea bargaining as the triage/resource management tool I originally mentioned.

Comment: Re:The (in)justice system (Score 1) 291

Sure -- if you're going to eliminate existing crimes, you'll have less plea bargains. But unless all plea bargains are for what you're referring to as prohibition crimes (and they aren't), you're still going to have more people in the system than you have resources to take to trial. The numbers I mentioned above may change (though not as much as you may think), but you're still going to have to make a call on how to deal with the layer of people the justice system, as currently funded and staffed, can't try in a reasonable timeframe.

Comment: Re:The (in)justice system (Score 1) 291

That's EXACTLY what we want and what you should want -- unless you're a fucking totalitarian sociopathic boot-licker

You know, I'm having a hard time deciding whether your overly charming tone or your illuminating choice of moniker is the top reason why I won't be losing any sleep over not seeing eye to eye with you on what constitutes a "civilized country."

Damn right we need to only pursue the "egregious criminals," because in every civilized country on the planet, what you call the "egregious criminals" are the only criminals!

Since I didn't draw any kind of a box around a set of "egregious criminals," the only way this statement can remotely make sense is if you're really convinced that nobody who takes a plea bargain actually committed a crime worthy of punishment. If so, you're welcome (and in fact I would strongly encourage you) to go live in one of the countries you consider "civilized." It's hard to imagine more of a win-win.

Comment: Re:The (in)justice system (Score 5, Insightful) 291

"plea bargains" should be absolutely forbidden.

You're assuming infinite resources. As it is, would you prefer a system where (1) your taxes now have to cover a 20-30-fold increase in state and federal courts (and prosecutors) needed to take all cases to trial; (2) on the other side of the bar, an even higher percentage of the population becomes criminal defense lawyers; and (3) you yourself end up on jury duty multiple times a year?

Or, would you rather a world where the prosecutors just pursue the most egregious criminals given the limited resources they have, and put everyone else right back out on the streets with no deterrent whatsoever?

I'm not suggesting the current plea-bargain system is optimal or that incremental changes aren't possible. What I am suggesting that you can't just throw out such a fundamental piece without stepping back and redesigning the entire system.

+ - SPAM: The Game Changing SEO Strategies For 2015 And Beyond

Submitted by Leonardinhio
Leonardinhio (3942629) writes "With 2015 coming up around the corner, SEM and SEO experts are looking ahead at what strategies to use to make the most of their efforts.

The issue at hand is that the way SEO and SEM work often changes. Search engines like Google have been ramping up their policing of websites that use old, unethical tactics like keyword stuffing and spammy backlinks. The old skool ways of doing SEO just don’t work anymore and with Google pushing the envelope regarding their algorithm technologies, the modern day SEM has got to change their game or die on the vine.

Basically, the new game is one where long term results are more preferable. The days of telling clients that their site will hit the top of Google in a matter of days are long over. Reason being is because the old ways of doing SEO are now penalized. This brings us to the real deal regarding long term SEO results. This is done by several simple factors but the toughest of them all.

Bottom line is that the SE’s want people to enjoy searching and not having to get a populated list of spammy websites when they’re looking for relevant information. All the keywords and keyphrases in the world aren’t going to work anymore. Google knows this and now they focus on content, design, and true relevance. This means that SEO pros are going to have to tell their clients that it’s time to get on the good foot and build sites that are meaningful, relevant, and without unethical presence.

Quality content is the key here. Not lots of links to other people’s videos and pictures but original content, well written copy and links that are ethical will mean that in the long run, the site will rise in the SE’s and be more stable. Impatient clients are only going to suffer if they don’t game change. In addition, trying to get great content cheap is not going to work anymore. Hiring copywriters from poor countries will only get you poor content and you will lose out in the short and long term. This isn’t a game of rush in and rush out anymore. Now you’ve got to work for your SEO results.

Will the new world of SEO change with the times and technology? They had better and do so fast. No more laziness and backroom dealings to get clients to pay big money for ineffective results. Now it’s time to go to work and work hard. Any SEO or SEM pro who doesn’t engage in a lengthy discussion about the time it will take to get good results is a fool. It took years to come to this but it was due to happen as the public got tired of spammy SE results and when surfers leave, money is lost. Google can’t afford to have some new up and coming SE that establishes a sound ethical policy and technology that the surfers enjoy or Google’s reign at the top will fall and fall hard. That being said, SEO experts had best do some due diligence and prepare for the new way of doing things."

Link to Original Source

+ - Pluto-Bound spacecraft ends hibernation to start mission

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "NASA's New Horizons spacecraft awoke from hibernation on Saturday and sent a radio confirmation that it had successfully turned itself back on one and a half hours later. The spacecraft has been travelling for nine years across the solar system towards its destination, Pluto. From the article: "In 2006, with New Horizons already on its way, Pluto was stripped of its title as the ninth planet in the solar system and became a dwarf planet, of which more than 1,000 have since been discovered in the Kuiper Belt. With New Horizons approaching Pluto's doorstep, scientists are eager for their first close-up look at this unexplored domain.""

Comment: Re:Why tax profits, why not income? (Score 1) 602

by SlaveToTheGrind (#48517177) Attached to: UK Announces 'Google Tax'

Individuals aren't taxes based on their profit but income. Corporations should minimally be held to the same standard.

Taxing businesses' income rather than their profits would severely disadvantage businesses with ultra-thin profit margins (e.g., supermarkets, whose net profit before taxes currently averages under 2%).

If your profit margin isn't high enough to cover this tax then you shouldn't incorporate.

See above, and be careful what you wish for -- bye bye supermarkets. Or, I suppose their other option in your world would be to raise their prices by ~4.5% across the board so their net profit would remain the same. Hard to imagine a more regressive tax than that.

Comment: Re:Nice (Score 1) 105

Are you seriously trying to imply that the only reason to address an ebola outbreak is to score popularity points?

I personally wouldn't think so, no. But the state of play as given easily supports the notion that, despite its independent merits, it's definitely a convenient political lever as well, a.k.a. "Rahm's Rule":

TFA states somewhat in passing that this is part of a package of so-called "anomalies" to the upcoming Continuing Resolution, including, as the article coyly puts it, "additional flexibility" for border control, without providing any numbers or other details. Being the curious sort, I just spent about 10 minutes looking for the actual details on the rest of the proposal and could find only a few me-toos of TFA. One therefore might be forgiven for wondering if the administration is teeing this up as the heartstring-front-runner to put pressure on Congress to accept its entire package of spending "anomalies" that's doubtless orders of magnitude larger than $58MM.

Comment: Re:I don't understand the injunction (Score 1) 30

The point of reference for "colorably different" is the patented features at issue (e.g., pinch/tap-to-zoom, snap-back scrolling), not the overall device.

Given that the patented features here are consumer-facing rather than internal functionality, design-around options would seem fairly limited short of yanking the offending feature altogether or replacing it with something fundamentally different (shake-to-zoom, anyone?). And if you skate too close to the edge of the ice on a design-around, a patentee is always free to request a contempt hearing (with a relatively low barrier to entry compared to the original litigation) to get a ruling on whether the new functionality is colorably different from that previously found to infringe.

As a practical matter, the injunction would have been a lot broader than the media account would lead you to believe.

Comment: Re:So, which is it? (Score 2) 151

by SlaveToTheGrind (#47606731) Attached to: Planes Can Be Hacked Via Inflight Wi-fi, Says Researcher

Did I, at any point, say I felt passengers deserved to die? No, I did not. . . . . Not every flight (for any airliner) is commercial, and not every flight carries passengers.

Nice attempt at backpedaling from your original cavalier, thoughtless, and utterly stupid comment, bucko, but you're stuck with it. The only scenario where somebody innocent doesn't die is if the only people on the plane, including the pilot, are the ones engaged in hacking into the plane's control system through the wifi to... wait for it... interfere with the flight controls and crash the plane. Hopefully even you can figure out why that scenario won't happen. Ever.

Comment: Re:Reality is... (Score 1) 125

by SlaveToTheGrind (#47534871) Attached to: Google Looking To Define a Healthy Human

Agree completely that people don't comprehend the ramifications of the enormous deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums in these so-called "low cost" plans. Add to that the tendency toward ultra-narrow provider networks and the resultant increase in risk of balance billing by out-of-network providers.

It's astounding to me how far people are willing to stick their heads in the sand to pretend that the current system is, in aggregate, "better" than the one that we already had.

Comment: Hardly a shocker (Score 5, Informative) 45

by SlaveToTheGrind (#47486979) Attached to: Appeals Court Affirms Old Polaroid Patent Invalid

The district court held the patent invalid under the old standard that was, in practice, more generous toward software algorithm patents. Then the Supreme Court decided CLS Bank, making software algorithm patents more difficult to obtain/keep. Under those circumstances, it would have been newsworthy if the Federal Circuit hadn't affirmed in this case.

Comment: Re:Why would you do that? (Score 1) 468

Private pilot here. I agree with everything you've said -- the entire piloting mindset revolves around the idea that redundancy (coupled, of course, with consistency, sobriety, and good judgment) keeps you alive. Now, different pilots take this principle to different levels, based in no small part on their own personal risk tolerance and how much they've seen go wrong in the past. I sat next to a 20-year commercial pilot on a flight last year, and he told me that he won't fly in anything with less than two engines anymore. That's further than I would go, but I get it.

Anyway, one of the fundamental pieces of redundancy in the entire process is the pilot. As many have observed, planes are designed so the pilot has at least a fighting chance of being able to bring it down in one piece even when many -- or all -- automated systems have failed. That's simply best practices. In my opinion (shared, I suspect, by most rational pilots in the world), giving up the ability to see out the front of the airplane if your shiny techno-gadget viewscreen fails is Just. Plain. Stupid. Imagine the feeling of utter helplessness: You have 2-3000 hours of flight time under your belt, you've flown your way out of countless near-fatal situations, and now you just have to sit there (along with your hundreds of passengers) and wait to die because you can't see out the front of the friggin' plane.

I predict this won't happen, at the very least within the term of the patent. If it does, I definitely won't be a passenger.

It is masked but always present. I don't know who built to it. It came before the first kernel.