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Comment: Re:Editorial bias, anyone? (Score 1) 79

I didn't mention that because I don't buy that as a cause. For one thing, if you think the Post is that much of a liberal hangout, try asking around, say, Daily Kos about Post editorials and op-eds--or how the paper covered the prelude and start of the war in Iraq a decade ago.

For another, have you looked at the political demographics of the Washington area? I don't think tilting to the left would lose you that many readers here.

Comment: Re:Idiotic Summary (Score 1) 106

by robp (#44337547) Attached to: 13 Years After DeCSS Case, Congressional IT Endorses VLC

Says who? If VLC were using any licensed DVD playback code, it wouldn't have the option of ignoring region codes (granted, newer drives make it harder to defeat that) or doing any of the other things that authorized DVD apps can't do. Further, I can assure you that I didn't compile libdvdcss on my Mac to get VLC to play any DVDs.

Comment: Re:They needed to use it. Duh. (Score 2) 106

by robp (#44337463) Attached to: 13 Years After DeCSS Case, Congressional IT Endorses VLC

I don't think it's illegal myself (IANAL, but who in this thread is?), even subject to DMCA logic. It's not “primarily designed or produced” to play DVDs and has more than "limited commercially significant purpose” besides playing DVDs. But I would not be remotely surprised if somebody in the entertainment industry tried to bring a case against it anyway. Like I wrote in the linked article: If a printer manufacturer can try to use the DMCA to put a manufacturer of ink cartridges out of business, why wouldn't a movie studio try to nail VLC as a DVD-cracking tool?

I honestly don't know why nobody has.

Comment: Don't give Microsoft PR too much credit (Score 1) 442

by robp (#44333695) Attached to: Microsoft's Surface RT Was Doomed From Day One

My take was that they were trying to pull an Apple--they invited only a select few people to a splashy launch event in the hope they'd get some advance buzz, but then they forget that Apple product-launch events also generally include prices, ship dates, and the chance to do a hands-on inspection of the product. That did not go over well.

(FWIW, they didn't send me a review unit either, but I was hardly alone in being shut out. I wound up buying one at a Microsoft Store to write my review, then returning it two weeks later.)

+ - Some 13 years after the DeCSS case, Congressional IT endorses VLC ->

Submitted by robp
robp (64931) writes "After a link to VLC showed up in one of HBO's DMCA takedown requests, I recalled how often I've linked to VLC in my own copy, and how often I've seen that app noted across traditional-media outlets--even though you could make the same arguments against linking to it that Judge Kaplan bought in 2000. Now, though, even the House's own IT department not only links to this CSS-circumventing app but endorses it. Question is, what led to this enlightenment?"
Link to Original Source

Comment: Like my profession's image could get any worse... (Score 3, Insightful) 277

by robp (#43850229) Attached to: Apple Leaves Journalists Jonesing

To any tech journalists upset that Apple isn't spoon-feeding them product news: Get out. Just leave the business. Please?

Seriously, if you don't know to do your own digging for a story or don't want to, you're in the wrong line of work. And there are plenty of other people who would gladly take your place.

Comment: Re:Looks like NSL requests went down in 2012 (Score 1) 33

by robp (#43251319) Attached to: Microsoft Releases 2012 Law Enforcement Requests Report

You should know soon enough--although the administration doesn't want the recipients of NSLs getting too specific, the FBI has to cough up a yearly total. It provided a count for 2011 (16,511 NSLs, covering 7,201 people) on April 30 of last year, so if they stick to that timing we should get last year's total in another month or so.

Comment: Fantastic (Score 5, Insightful) 100

by Tragek (#41927597) Attached to: Canada's Supreme Court Tosses Viagra Patent For Vagueness

My favourite part of the whole thing:

Writing for a unanimous court, Mr. Justice Louis LeBel said that the quid pro quo of patent legislation dictates that inventors can have an exclusive monopoly on a product provided they forthrightly disclose how it operates.

"If there is no quid – proper disclosure - then there can be no quo – exclusive property rights," he said.

Damn straight.

Comment: Re:Politicians are actually allowed to govern (Score 1) 500

by Tragek (#41281259) Attached to: Election Tech: In Canada, They Actually Count the Votes

The CAQ (Coalition Avenir Québec) pulled third, but all in all, I totally agree.

In total, Québec has 16 parties running more than one candidate. Alberta's last election had 9 parties. Similarly, in Alberta, a new party got seats.

There's a dynamic in Canada where new parties will rise, sometimes killing old parties. Methinks the Liberal dynasty of Canada will be one such victim.

Comment: Re:Can You SHow Me (Score 3, Interesting) 607

by Tragek (#39827705) Attached to: <em>Hobbit</em> Film Underwhelms At 48 Frames Per Second

My father's Sony drives me nuts with it's 120hz interpolation. I can attest to the soap-opera effect; it makes everything look very strange. Mission Impossible was positively ODD.

  I was always curious if it was an effect of the high frame-rate or the interpolation algorithms. Worryingly this story seems to indicate it's the frame-rate, not the algorithms.

You can do more with a kind word and a gun than with just a kind word. - Al Capone