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Comment: Re:false comparison (Score 4, Insightful) 378

If the people controlling the drone--the software engineer, the CEO, whomever--intentionally or recklessly caused the person to be hit, those people would be criminally charged by the state.

So...the programmer that wrote the code, or the QA guy who signed off on it, or the software engineer who designed it, or the platform guy who deployed it, or the product manager who owned it, or the CEO who ordered it, or the hardware engineer who designed the drone, or the factory worker who assembled it, or...all of them? Criminal liability in an autonomous system is not as clear-cut as you make it seem. Now, this isn't new - some percentage of cars fail catastrophically and kill people (not because of driver error) and some of those may be because of errors of people at $car_company - but that isn't to say that we have it totally under control.

Comment: Re:Don't you have to enter your password? (Score 1, Interesting) 279

Unless you read page 9374 of the TOS and EULA for the game at download time, you would not know that someone was about to sock your account for anything. The game does not have to tell you that it is going to charge your account. It simply asks for a password.

This is pretty much patently false for Apple in-app purchases. Unless you have any examples of apps that don't explicitly say "$0.99 for 30 coins" or whatever, because I have *never* seen such a thing.

Comment: Re:Conflicted (Score 1) 133

by Trapick (#39681537) Attached to: Canada: Police Do Not Have Power To Wiretap Without Warrant

the police did apply for a warrant, but knowing it would take 24 hours or something to get, they went ahead and tapped the line anyway because they were fearful something might happen to the family

One solution to this problem is to let the police wiretap without warrants. The better solution is to have a system where a judge can be woken up in the middle of the night with a warrant to sign - if it's truly urgent enough and valid, he can sign it. If it isn't, he can give the cops an earful and tell them to stuff it.

Comment: Re:I am amused standing in a cashiers line (Score 3, Informative) 489

by Trapick (#39225051) Attached to: Is Poor Numeracy Ruining Lives?
This is terrible thinking. You're right, the cashier doesn't have to know anything about arithmetic to give out change - unless they accidentally hit the wrong button the register. Which they do. Because fingers are fat and slow, and registers are dumb machines. So when the cashier hits $10.00 instead of $20.00 for the bill I gave him, I want him to know enough math to give me an extra $10 in change - since that's what he owes me. If you think this is a trivial example, manage some cashiers sometime. A quarter will correctly adjust (correctly) instantly, a quarter will simply not notice and give a person too little (or too much) change, and half will realize they hit the wrong button, stop, panic, and call someone for help to sort it out.

Comment: Re:Such systems have been proposed before (Score 5, Informative) 1065

by Trapick (#38976727) Attached to: The Zuckerberg Tax

As for the borrowing stuff - how is that supposed to work? So Ellison borrows against his shares (fair enough) and buys something with it. So now he has to pay back the loan. That payment needs to come from income, and for that he pays tax. Seems fair.

Nah, you're not being nearly creative enough. Ellison has no income, you see, so he can't pay back his loan, so the bank collects on the collateral, cancels the loan, and now Ellison has $1 billion and the bank has $ 1.05 billion in stock (or whatever). Easy peasy.

Comment: Re:Such systems have been proposed before (Score 1) 1065

by Trapick (#38976673) Attached to: The Zuckerberg Tax
That's a wealth tax, and that's fine if you want a wealth tax. However, if you were to count the increase of your home's value as income, and then be taxed on that at the same rate as the rest of your income, you might quickly find you can't afford to have your house increase in value. Do you see why that might not be ideal?

Comment: Re:CS is part of IT (Score 1) 520

by Trapick (#37516574) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: CS Grads Taking IT Jobs?

CS is programming.

No, it isn't. Software engineering is programming. CS is the study of algorithms, time complexity, theoretical computation, etc. etc. etc. While a CS worker may do some light programming in his job, the average software developer is not a computer scientist, and does not have the skill set to be one. Slightly tongue in cheek, but I hope you get the idea - we're in a field that's very very murky.

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