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Comment Yes, it will encourage piracy (Score 1) 469

You have to wonder, maybe the copyright cartel likes piracy? It would be the best explanation for all the pushes and pushes for making piracy easier while making using the legal thing harder.. I for one, think piracy benefits these guys, it gives them the best excuse for their movies/music/games not selling as well as their stock holders think they should.

Comment Re:A really nasty trick (Score 1) 765

You are right, "open standard" != "open source". It seems anyone and his cat seems to be able to turn any proprietary, royalty-requiring thing an open standard. But note that the H.264 "open standard" is one for how to reproduce H.264 video. Most mainstream formats have been standardized in how to open them. And just because something is an open standard, it has no relation with it having a legitimate right to becoming a web standard. Because the web, demands more than just being an open standard. By that logic, websites should all move from HTML markup to PDF, because PDF is an open standard.

So, Stop it with the "open standard" giberish. Neither webm or H.264 are web standards. H.264 is proprietary and requires royalties for implementation. That disqualifies it completely for the job of being a web standard. So we are in a standards war.

literally going to render hundreds of billions of dollars worth of tablets, smartphones, set-top boxes, etc. with H.264 hardware support obsolete.

Oh come on, that's an incredibly silly argument. Those tablets will still be able to play H.264, even in the web with a plugin, it just won't be usable with video, which means that you won't have to pay royalties to support HTML5, and that's great, isn't it?. The idea itself is also pretty bonkers. Why should those "millions" of tablets be immune to obsolescence? Technology marches on, and they are not entitled not to become obsolete.

The accusation that this "sucks for users " is ridiculous. It seems that they (all browser makers) are just taking a position in a war to see what format becomes the HTML5 standard. For some reason, google is being accused of being the devil for giving less choice where : a) Apple and Microsoft both support H.264 and NOT WebM in their browsers and b) Firefox and opera support WebM and not H.264.

You seem concerned that this will slow down transition from flash. Well, I got news , we do not want to transition from flash just for transition's sake. If we transition from flash, it better be to something better, and that includes concerns about royalties. It is clear that we all obediently adopting MS and Apple's defacto standard will benefit them, but making developers required to pay royalties to implement support for standard HTML5 is just lame. It is also incompatible with the GPL.

Your 'expert opinion' also misses the whole point. All software is probably patent-encumbered in one way or another. And that WebM may or may not be patent encumbered does not instantly turn it into an as undesirable candidate for web as H.264 already is. Case in point is, that WebM is royalty free and H.264 isn't.

Google may be manipulating the market for selfish reasons, but you are foolish to think that's not exactly what Apple and Microsoft are doing. And overall, Google's intentions with this are irrelevant in comparison to what this will accomplish. If Apple and Microsoft don't get away with H.264 it will make the web more open by default. WebM is an open source project and soon will be an open standard. And anyway, a triumvirate of the three best browsers is standing for it. Unlike the other two guys - known software patent bullies, with a story of liking closedness and ruining the web with defacto standards.

Comment meh (Score 1) 878

I guess goog were hoping a lot more people to jump to the Go bandwagon just because they announced it. Yet it really didn't happen... I don't think bashing other languages is really going to improve on it.

Both c++ and Java have their strengths and uses. Java is IMHO HORRIBLY ANNOYING TO CODE IN, but that's actually its strength, it just won't let cowboys get away with doing the things they love to do. Sure, it has been lacking in things, but they update it around, the following update will have some very nice syntax for some data structures (it will get more complex).

The C's also have the advantage of being closer to the hardware, sure you don't need that most of the times, but when you do, they become a great tool in your box, really. It has improved a lot over the years (also known as getting more complex).

Interpreted languages cover for their downfalls when you don't need performance or want to do fancy things with paralel programming. Which is good. Python goes around also improving and getting more complex.

And there lies Go. Its main advantage over other langauges is exactly that. As it is basically undeveloped, it is much closer to what its creators originally wanted it to be. The thing is, that once it starts getting used, and users notice that for example it is pretty necessary for a compiled language to have say generics or exception handling... it will forcefully have to end getting modified and improved and thus it WILL become complex. I do not think that advertising it as "simpler" will work out as since it is a langauge that is intended to be used it is basically doomed to become more complex and thus this selling point will necessarily die. They should advertize it for its superior parallel computing and fast compiler speed, but simplicity... is just a bad idea.

Reading E-Books Takes Longer Than Reading Paper Books 186

Hugh Pickens writes "PC World reports on a study showing that reading from a printed book — versus an e-book on any of the three tested devices, an iPad, Kindle 2, and PC — was a faster experience to a significant degree. Readers measured on the iPad reported reading speeds, on average, of 6.2 percent slower than their print-reading counterparts, while readers on the Kindle 2 clocked in at 10.7 percent slower. Jacob Nielsen had each participant read a short story by Ernest Hemingway. Each participant was timed, then quizzed to determine their comprehension and understanding of what they just read. Nielsen also surveyed users' satisfaction levels after operating each device (or page). For user satisfaction, the iPad, Kindle, and book all scored relatively equally at 5.8, 5.7, and 5.6 on a one-to-seven ranking scale (seven representing the best experience). The PC, however, did not fare so well, getting a usability score of 3.6."

Comment Re:Doctors don't like informed patients (Score 1) 368

Ah really? Informed patients are one thing. But there are topics in which google is just an easy , easy way to get utterly, and catastrophically misinformed. Also, the disinformation is hard to distinguish for most people. Say you are a science geek that can at least recognize conspiracy bull from actual information, good for you. But what about the other people that don't enjoy of this benefit? Most of them just end up falling pray to complete BS.

This is the sort of things you can learn at "Google U" : http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2009/05/jenny_mccarthy_shows_off_her_knowledge_o.php

This is not "empowerment" it is the opposite, it moves people back to the dark ages in a way.

Facebook Throws Privacy Advocates a Bone 126

sarysa writes "In response to a week-long assault by privacy advocates, and following a well publicized all-hands meeting, Facebook has introduced two new security features in response to privacy concerns. One feature allows users to whitelist devices associated with a Facebook account, and the other allows users who verify their identity to view previous logins. While both are useful features, they do nothing to address the recent privacy complaints."

BSA Says Software Theft Exceeded $51B In 2009 350

alphadogg sends a NetworkWorld.com piece going over the Business Software Alliance's latest stats on software theft around the world. "Expanding PC sales in emerging markets is increasing the rate of software piracy, according to the Business Software Alliance and IDC. The rate of global software piracy in 2009 was 43%, meaning that for every $100 worth of legitimate software sold in 2009, an additional $75 worth of unlicensed software also made its way into the market. This is a 2-percentage-point increase from 2008. Software theft exceeded $51 billion in commercial value in 2009, according to the BSA. IDC says lowering software piracy by just 10 percentage points during the next four years would create nearly 500,000 new jobs and pump $140 billion into 'ailing economies.' ... In the United States, software piracy remained at 20%, the lowest level of software theft of any nation in the world. ... The PC markets in Brazil, India, and China accounted for 86% of the growth in PC shipments worldwide." The BSA president said, "Few if any industries could withstand the theft of $51 billion worth of their products." It's unclear whether that was a brag about the industry's robustness, or a result of the industry's low cost of goods sold.

Mozilla Reveals Firefox 4 Plans 570

Barence writes "Mozilla has given a breakdown of its plans for Firefox 4. Perhaps the most striking change to Firefox 4 is the user interface, which takes a great deal of inspiration from Google Chrome. 'Something UI designers have known for a long time is that the simpler an interface looks, the faster it will seem,' said director of Firefox Mike Beltzner during the presentation. Also mooted was the ability to give applications such as Gmail and Twitter their own permanent tabs for easy access, and the introduction of a 'switch to tab' button, allowing power users running hundreds of tabs to quickly find the one they want. Beltzner said Mozilla was also looking at replicating Chrome's tactic of silently updating the browser in the background, removing the annoying wait when Firefox first loads up."

Comment Re:makefiles and pointers (Score 1) 742

Ok, this is a dejavu, but let me put it again: The article is about the kernel.- You will have to deal with C and pointers, and even ASM if you are coding the linux kernel (or any other kernel for that matter). Regarding apps, it is not just C++ anymore, things like python and Java are very suitable for development of linux applications and are already used extensively by young developers interested in such. There is also the travesty that is Mono and many other languages. There are a lot more options than C/C++ now.

Comment Re:Linux has lost its "elite" status. (Score 1) 742

It seems almost as if the slashdot post intentionally got a misleading title... Please note: The stuff about "Linux not attracting young developers" is about the Linux KERNEL. KERNEL. This got nothing to do about the remaining parts of the OS. So please don't bring bull about how windows7 is now stable and that's the reason developers don't make apps for linux anymore, because it is not true that young devs are less attracted now into making APPLICATIONS that run on linux-based systems. APPLICATIONS used in Linux-based OS are as healthy as ever if not more healthy. This is related to the KERNEL not being attractive to young developers anymore.

It was kinda like stuffing the wrong card in a computer, when you're stickin' those artificial stimulants in your arm. -- Dion, noted computer scientist