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The Courts

SCO vs. IBM Battle Over Linux May Finally Be Over (networkworld.com) 28

JG0LD writes with this news from Network World: A breach-of-contract and copyright lawsuit filed nearly 13 years ago by a successor company to business Linux vendor Caldera International against IBM may be drawing to a close at last, after a U.S. District Court judge issued an order in favor of the latter company earlier this week.
Here's the decision itself (PDF). Also at The Register.

Comment Re:Drone Loophole (Score 2) 30

So would that include children holding a model plane over their head and pretending it is flying under its own power? Technically, it's "tethered"... via the child's arm.

These restrictions are so outlandishly vague that they are absurd. At the very least, a minimum flying height should be mentioned, but it is nowhere to be found.

I have seen a childrens toy that has a tethered helicopter which cannot roam anywhere further than a couple of feet from the base of the tether Should those also be covered by the law?

Comment Re:Are there that many drone in the air in the US? (Score 1) 30

The driver on his phone driving next to you is FAR more of a threat to more people than drones or terrorists are

Given that you are phrasing this in the present tense, and apparently a non-hypothetical sense, I imagine that the person who is reading your post at the same time while they also trying to drive is *FAR* more of a thread to more people than even a driver beside them who might be using the cell phone.

Comment Re:If you open that backdoor... (Score 1) 163

The use of strong encryption in no way implies that you are "guilty" of anything or have "done something wrong."

I didn't suggest that it did.

In the eyes of those who might believe that if one is doing nothing wrong they have nothing to hide (which is false, but there are still people who believe believe it), however, it might at the very least give them an incentive to more closely scrutinize that person's activities, at least moreso than the average person who follows the government status quo procedures.

But again, I do not ever mean to suggest that this should be an indication that one actually *has* done something wrong, only that there are people who may *believe* something wrong may be happening, and in the end, that belief will still influence what actions they take.

Comment Re:No (Score 3, Interesting) 163

What I think is more interesting is that even *IF* the government could be trusted, it would still be a bad idea to give them unfettered access, because if they can read your confidential data, however benign they may claim their intentions to be, then so can somebody with less benevolent motivations. The net result is that instead of making things easier for law enforcement, it will actually made things harder because law enforcement would then be further burdened with trying to also protect those who are innocent from predatory criminals who are exploiting the weaker security that would be made mandatory.

Obviously if you don't trust the government in the first place, this is clearly a bad idea.... but it is interesting, I think, to note that even if the government *COULD* be trusted, it still works out to an overall bad idea, with a net negative benefit for absolutely everyone, both the people *AND* the government. The only ones who would really come out ahead are the ones who disregard the law.

Comment Re:If you open that backdoor... (Score 3, Interesting) 163

The idea, I imagine they believe, is that when you have to go to suffficient lengths to keep your data confidential, you will actually draw even *more* attention in the process, and even if you are not guilty of anything in particular, may find yourself more heavily scrutinized by the powers that be than the average individual.

Comment Re:The science is not settled (Score 1) 529

Of course it is.... if you "settle" it, then that action closes even the very possibility that further data might actually get discovered in the first place that would allow you to refine your scientific model to more accurately reflect reality. You've closed the book. You're done. If you are actually willing to revise your model later to reflect new data, then the matter isn't really settled at all. Of course, if you just gone and laid off everybody that would have even been able to provide any future data, then you're not likely to get any new data in the first place, and so you remain in ignorance.

The debate on climate change can be settled, but the science should *NEVER* be thought of as such.

Comment Re:The science is not settled (Score 1) 529

Saying that the science is settled is not only saying that we know everything that we simply are able to know about something right now, it is also saying that there is nothing else that we ever even *CAN* learn about it.

Which is not true.

Not about climate change, not about gravity, which as you put it, is also "settled" science.

Comment Re:The science is not settled (Score 1) 529

Anyone that tells you the science is settled is not a scientist....

I agree.

they are a politician wanting to shutdown inquiry on an issue and install dogma in its place.

Or they are someone who, as somebody who is *not* a scientist, as you have noted above, does not believe that further scientific study in the area would add any further understanding of value, and so the money is, in their view, more wisely spent elsewhere. They could be entirely wrong in this view, but they have it nonetheless.

Do not attribute to malice what can easily be explained by ignorance.

There is no doubt in my mind that this decision will eventually come to bite them in the ass.... hard..

Comment Re:Cables not the only thing non-compliant, IMO... (Score 1) 135

Imagine what would happen if there were no protections from people attaching equipment to their phone lines.... one person could sabatoge every landline telephone on his entire block.

If it's connecting to something made by a third party, it shouldn't matter if it is using a "standard" jack or not.... protection mechanisms should exist to ensure that noncompliant devices don't damage it.

Doing otherwise is the hardware equivalent of allowing a stack overflow bug based on unexpected user input.

Comment Cables not the only thing non-compliant, IMO.... (Score 1, Interesting) 135

If you plug in a non-compliant usb-c cable into a device's usb port, a compliant device should be able to recognize it as such and simply refuse to operate. It should categorically *NOT* cause the device to cease to operate.

The fact that this guy apparently shorted a $1000 computer because of a badly made $10 cable IMO shows just as much of a flaw in the computer as it does in the cable.

All that the computer needed to have on the port was a breaker that would trip if or when the expected limits were exceeded and it would have been fine.

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