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Comment Re:First bring in a complete ban, then look at mak (Score 1) 270 270

New Technology allows you to do new things in new ways, and hence actions may be against the principal of an existing law, but not captured by it's definition.

Then it's a shoddily-written law that targets the methods of doing the action, without addressing the action itself. Actions should be punishable; methods should not be, unless there's a special reason to change the punishment based on the method used to perform the action.

You also can't be as vague as saying "No peeping" because that's how people get off with excuses like "I wasn't peeping, I was peeking".

If I were a lawyer, or otherwise versed in the appropriate legal terminology, I would've used it. As it is, I stuck to vernacular English.

And those exist. The penalty for unlicensed drone use is not the same as manslaughter for example

I'm not talking about penalties. I'm talking about a threshold of occurrences before I think something should be done about the problem.

No laws existed against blinding people with lasers because why would you have a law for something that hadn't been invented?

Bullshit; a law exists. Assault and battery would both apply, and possibly aggravated assault, to emphasize the life-changing damage that blinding someone would cause.

so the authorities cracked down and banned them.

That doesn't seem to be true, at least in the U.S. Lasers of various powers are widely available. The change, as I perceive it, is that the novelty value wore off, and most people in society began to recognize that using a dangerous tool as a toy is irresponsible. That being said, I can still go to a pet store and buy a class-1 laser as a cat toy. I can buy a class-3 in a store, marketed for pointing to stars.

Comment Re: NVidea's problem, not Microsoft's (Score 1) 316 316

I don't "let" my family do anything; I give my input, they make their choices. You have a very immature conception of what "respect" means, as well as what "a shit OS" is. An OS is a tool to run software. If an OS doesn't run the software that you need, then it's an ill-suited tool for the purpose. Windows runs the software that they need, and is the only OS that does. Thanks for the input though, this has been a wonderful, enlightening, and useful exchange of opinions =p

Comment Re:Windows 10 isn't Out Yet (Score 1) 316 316

Fuck the Xbox One too. After the shit with the GUI change on the XBox 360, I'm not going for another bait-and-switch. They've lost my business, just as surely as Sony has. I feel like Nintendo's going in a direction I'm not interested in either, so I'm sitting at least one generation of consoles out until some things change direction.

Sony has a lot of good devices/products.

Sony has some wonderful products. Shame that the company has made some of the decisions that it has.

As far as an OS, Linux covers all of the software that I need and most of the software that I want. Maybe I could do the work to get the rest running through Wine, but who has the time for that? I don't, so my various machines will keep their Windows partitions....but like the consoles, I'm sitting out of the upgrade cycle until they're actually selling a product that I'm interested in buying.

Comment Re:Same likely holds true... (Score 1) 250 250

The massive invasion of privacy is already going on; one of the places that I considered buying the item from is the one that told the advertisers what kind of thing I was searching for (that, or I suppose that maybe there's a cookie in the browser, and the ad guys were told indirectly. I haven't been curious enough to figure out the exact mechanism for the transfer of information).

Comment Re:First bring in a complete ban, then look at mak (Score 1) 270 270

I think we do. Because drones open a whole new physical dimension that never previously existed.

Harassment is harassment. Peeping is peeping. I don't see the point of singling out one particular technology that can be abused. Kind of like how fraud is fraud; I don't think there should be a separate consideration for fraud occurring over phone lines versus data lines versus in-person. The original law should be made broad enough to cover all kinds of fraud to which it's meant to apply; same thing with ways that people can abuse toy helicopters and the like.

Er, yes they should, that is exactly how it should work. Or do you think we wait until 50% of drivers kill someone before we introduce any road rules?

I'd put different thresholds on imaginary privacy issues and safety issues likely to result in death. It's like putting a ban on walkie-talkies in the 90s because you could eavesdrop on cordless phone calls with them, versus issuing citations for not wearing a seatbelt in a car. They aren't really comparable situations. One is rare, of limited scope, and isn't likely to hurt anyone. The other is a preventative action that lowers traffic fatalities.

Comment Re:NVidea's problem, not Microsoft's (Score 1) 316 316

how is it you haven't switched to Linux or BSD or OSX yet?

I have, with the exception of games and other programs that don't have Linux equivalents.

And if you are supporting family members then how come in the last 15 or so years you haven't switched them to Linux or BSD or OSX or Android or iOS for their personal computing?

Because they want to do things that they can't on non-Windows OSes, the problems I have with Windows don't bother them, and because I respect my family enough to not change their computers to suit me better while making them suit their purposes more poorly.

Comment Re:Same likely holds true... (Score 4, Informative) 250 250

I have a related experience. I'll often look for a product, find what I want in under an hour, and spend a day or two sleeping on it, considering other options, etc. I purchase the product. Over the next few days, I'm bombarded with ads for the product I've already purchased. I find it simultaneously amusing and pathetic, but never useful.

Comment BBC / other state broadcasters? (Score 4, Insightful) 132 132

Although I'm more or less in favour of this (details around copyright 'compensation' nonsense from the EU to sort out), it does present a problem for state-funded broadcasters such as the BBC.

I'm a UK TV license payer, therefore I fund the BBC. Someone in France, for example, is not funding the Beeb and without geoblocking would be able to pick up for free all of the programming that I and other UK license payers are making possible. Now there seems a reasonably obvious way round it - introduce subscriptions, but this is more problematic than it seems at first glance. Would still need geoblocking + subscriptions for outside the geoblock, because otherwise the current practice in the UK of not caring where and what I'm streaming to will fall apart (you'd need to verify the subscription or similar - how would my kids do that when it's just me on the license, are we talking about having to name everyone covered by the license payment etc.). Worse, if the revenue from subscriptions starts becoming a significant part of the BBC's income, then it will start to produce more content geared towards those subscriptions and become less 'British'.

I'm using the BBC as an example I'm familiar with, but there are other state broadcasters in Europe. The BBC model of license to keep it independent of government editorial control is the only funding model of its kind I can think of, but I would imagine the same issues would apply to most of them.

Comment Re:Yep (Score 1) 270 270

No ordinary multi-rotor drone (or model glider) could even fly anywhere near a full sized helicopter

Most of the aircraft used in California are fixed-wing aircraft (apparently, 14 spotter planes, 11 helicopters, and 23 tanker planes). Some quadcopters apparently have no trouble flying over wildfires.

Its a natural instinct of law enforcement officials or firemen to want to curtail the publics (or journalists) rights to be in the same space and take pictures of them working..

I'm not going to actually disagree with that, but I don't think that's a sufficient explanation for why they'd want to curtail flights in places with an unknown pilot flying through the same airspace that the larger aircraft would also like to occupy.

Comment Re:First bring in a complete ban, then look at mak (Score 1) 270 270

I live in an apartment block. Facing me is another apartment block and between the two buildings there's a busy footpath, then a busy road, and another busy footpath. Nothing else. If someone loses control of an RC, there's an unacceptable chance of injury and could include causing a car crash.

If someone's flying there, they deserve to have their equipment confiscated by the police and to be charged with a crime with "endangerment" or "negligence" in its name. I agree that it makes sense to restrict allowed flight areas to places that don't have heavy pedestrian or vehicular traffic, the same way that I think it makes sense to have posted "no parking" signs. "No hobby aircraft here" makes more sense to me than "No hobby aircraft, period".

Drone[s] are used by only a small group, so we're talking about restricting a small group to safeguard the safety and privacy of the many.

We're talking about restricting a small group (RC aircraft pilots) for the bad behavior of a much, much smaller group (negligent/irresponsible/criminal RC aircraft pilots). The behavior is what I'm opposed to, not the technology...so why would I want a blanket ban on the technology, rather than the behavior?

In terms of convicting someone of illegal drone use, you're right that anti-harassment could be tried. Problem is that they might or mightn't work, you might have a hard time proving it, and the case could take years. If you want to prevent the incident, it's better to have a clear law "No drones here".

In a perfect world, all crimes would be both simple and easy to prove, and criminals would get what they deserve. I don't believe in outright banning something because a small fraction of its users abuse it. I feel that on the balance, the loss due to the reduced freedom of action of the responsible users is greater than the gain of preventing an already rare occurrence.

"There is such a fine line between genius and stupidity." - David St. Hubbins, "Spinal Tap"