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Comment: Re:One of life's great mysteries (Score 1) 251

by Tanman (#46241085) Attached to: 'CandySwipe' Crushed: When Game Development Turns Nasty

When comparing how much people give for charity, percentage is all that matters. If someone makes $50k/yr and gives $5k/yr to charity, and someone else makes $5,000,000/yr and gives $20k to charity, do you really consider them to be more generous since they gave FOUR TIMES the amount? No, they are less generous. They would be giving 0.4% of their salary vs. 10.0%. The impact on their lives would be non-existent. The point of charitable giving is that you are giving up something for other people -- you are saying "my life will be harder so that other people's lives can be easier."

But yeah, I guess you could say they gave quadruple the amount to charity, if you wanted to be disingenuous.

Comment: One of life's great mysteries (Score 4, Interesting) 251

by Tanman (#46240103) Attached to: 'CandySwipe' Crushed: When Game Development Turns Nasty

One of life's great mysteries is how achieving wealth tends to make people more greedy. For example, studies have shown that, as a percentage of income, charitable giving tends to be inversely proportional to income. Here you have a company that has found tremendous success, and in response to that success they become more greedy and try to shut everyone down.

I think human nature is not to just want success. Human nature is to want to win and stomp on the corpses of your competition.

Comment: "unlikely you'll be the one responsible?" (Score 1) 501

by Tanman (#45124399) Attached to: Lessons From the Fiasco

"Unless you're the head of a major federal agency or a huge company launching an online initiative targeted at millions of users, it's unlikely you'll be the one responsible for a project (and problems) on the scale of the Health Insurance Marketplace."

Going by budget, even if you are the head of Facebook and Twitter, you are still not going to be responsible for a project on the scale of the Health Insurance Marketplace.

This farce is wholly, completely, and unarguably inexcusable.


Since Snowden Leaks, NSA's FOIA Requests Are Up 1,000 Percent 47

Posted by samzenpus
from the checking-the-list dept.
v3rgEz writes "A veritable FOIA frenzy ensued in 2013 following a series of leaks about NSA surveillance programs, recently released documents show. From June 6 to September 4, the National Security Agency's FOIA load increased 1,054 percent over its 2012 intake. In that three-month span, the agency received 3,382 public records requests. For comparison, the NSA received just 293 requests over the same period in 2012. While a few have netted new details about NSA surveillance operations, such as a contract with French security firm VUPEN, the majority appear to have been rejected. MuckRock has a guide on filing with the NSA to maximize your chances of actually getting something back."
Electronic Frontier Foundation

Trove of NSA Documents and FISC Opinions Declassified Thanks to EFF Lawsuit 110

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the what-is-truth dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Thanks to an EFF lawsuit, the office of the Director of National Intelligence is releasing declassified redacted versions of various documents relating to the NSA's domestic surveillance activities. The documents are being released on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks." The EFF is hosting the documents, which are searchable. A few initial findings were posted yesterday evening; they include (thanks to another anonymous reader) the NSA illegally using phone data for three years, and evidence that Clapper knowingly mislead the public about metadata collection.

Comment: What is the public's recourse? (Score 5, Insightful) 524

I just want to make sure I have the right series of events here, from the public perspective:

1. A previous elected official and congress enact some overreaching laws in response to a terrorist attack
2. A politician who makes a bunch of promises against these programs is elected the new President
3. The now-elected politician strengthens and enforces those programs rather than shuttering them
4. There is some kind of a court decision but it is sealed/secret. FOIA requests are made by EFF.
5. A whistle blower comes forward and exposes the illegal activities to the public because his bosses and the elected official have continued said operations. Since his bosses are the Executive Branch and responsible for enforcing the law, he has nobody to report his findings to other than the public.
6. The elected official and members of congress declare said whistle blower a traitor for exposing their methods.
7. It is revealed that the court had previously, as in years ago, ruled that the activities reported on by the whistle blower are illegal. Meaning the whistle blower is not just reporting the activities, but he is reporting that the President of the United States, the heads of major departments, the Attorney General, and a bunch of other People In Power have been knowingly breaking the law to empower the government. Not only, in fact, are they doing something that the court already ruled is illegal, but they sealed the court's decision so that the public would not know about it.

Did I miss anything?

Oh yeah,

8. Snowden is probably still fucked.


EFF Wins Release of Secret Court Opinion: NSA Surveillance Unconstitutional 524

Posted by samzenpus
from the stop-it dept.
mspohr writes "For over a year, EFF has been fighting the government in federal court to force the public release of an 86-page opinion of the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC). Issued in October 2011, the secret court's opinion found that surveillance conducted by the NSA under the FISA Amendments Act was unconstitutional and violated 'the spirit of' federal law."
United States

After LinkedIn Clues, FOIA Nets New Details On NSA's ANCHORY Program 75

Posted by samzenpus
from the taking-a-good-look dept.
v3rgEz writes "After the ACLU's Christopher Soghoian highlighted NSA programs listed on LinkedIn, Jason Gulledge filed a request for details about the program — and turned up lucky. The NSA released 7 pages of database descriptions of its ANCHORY program, an open-source intelligence data gathering effort. The NSA's FOIA office said it would pony up more, but only if Gulledge could prove he was requesting the documents as part of a news gathering effort or if he would agree to pay associated fees."

NSA Can't Search Its Own Email 165

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the apt-get-install-thinthread dept.
cycoj writes "The NSA says that there is no central method to search its own email. When asked in a Freedom of Information Act request for emails with the National Geographic Channel over a specific time period, the agency, which has been collecting and analyzing the data of hundreds of millions of Internet users, says it can only perform person-per-person searches on its own email."

Comment: This is NOT low-cost (Score 1) 103

by Tanman (#43758857) Attached to: Cell Phones As a Dirty Bomb Detection Network

If they are talking about enough users having this running to be effective, then they are talking about a tremendous number of users basically setting their phones to drain their batteries out as-fast-as-possible. What are the electricity costs of such an endeavor? Significant, I'd wager.

And the number of false-positives that would be generated would be huge, I'd imagine.

Comment: Apple can spend their "locked up" foreign money (Score 1) 245

by Tanman (#43423187) Attached to: Where Will Apple Get Flash Memory Now?

I don't understand why Apple doesn't just spend all their $billions locked up overseas to build an overseas manufacturing facility. They have plenty. Probably plenty to do it multiple times. Then, they get the best of multiple worlds: 1) they are not as reliant on Samsung, 2) they get to use that money tax-free, 3) they can have some meaningful diversification

And if the thing goes belly-up? Then they "buy" the whole thing from their foreign subsidiary with US cash and get a tax rebate on the business expense in addition to never having paid taxes on it in the first place.

Comment: Re:Samsung wasn't the beligerant party (Score 1) 111

by Tanman (#42762443) Attached to: Judge Koh Rules: Samsung Did Not Willfully Infringe

Allow me to rephrase:

I don't work for samsung, I'm a definitely-not-Samsung-person, buuuuut . . .

The monolithic competitors to the small, agile little tech/phone startup company, Samsung, want to squash it with legal action because they have no prayer of defeating the high-value, unmatched technological innovations Samsung is or will be offering shortly! Samsung's victory is inevitable! ALL HAIL SAMSUNG!

I say again, I am not a Samsung employee. However, as an insightful, intelligent employee, I am looking at employment there in the coming years (and maybe you should too, fellow insightful employees of Samsung's doomed-to-be-destroyed competitors!).

"Only the hypocrite is really rotten to the core." -- Hannah Arendt.