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Submission + - Amazon Proposes Dedicated Airspace For Drones->

An anonymous reader writes: Amazon has published two new position papers which lay out its vision for future drone regulation. Under Amazon's plan, altitudes under 200ft would be reserved for basic hobbyist drones and those used for things like videography and inspection. Altitudes between 200ft and 400ft would be designated for "well-equipped vehicles" capable of operating autonomously out of line of sight. They would need sophisticated GPS tracking, a stable data uplink, communications capabilities with other drones, and sensors to avoid collisions. This, of course, is where Amazon would want to operate its drone delivery fleet. From 400ft to 500ft would be a no-fly zone buffer between the drone airspace and integrated airspace. Amazon's plan also makes room for "predefined low-risk areas," where hobbyists and other low-tech drones can fly higher than the 200ft ceiling. "Additionally, it is Amazon's view that air traffic management operations should follow a 'managed by exception' approach. This means operators are always aware of what the fleet is doing, yet they only intervene in significant off-nominal cases."
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Submission + - Two Years Later, White House Responds To 'Pardon Edward Snowden' Petition->

An anonymous reader writes: In June of 2013, a petition was posted to Whitehouse.gov demanding that Edward Snowden receive a full pardon for his leaks about the NSA and U.S. surveillance practices. The petition swiftly passed 100,000 signatures — the point at which the White House said it would respond to such petitions. For two years, the administration was silent, but now they've finally responded. In short: No, Edward Snowden won't be receiving a pardon. Lisa Monaco, the President's Advisor on Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, said, "Mr. Snowden's dangerous decision to steal and disclose classified information had severe consequences for the security of our country and the people who work day in and day out to protect it. If he felt his actions were consistent with civil disobedience, then he should do what those who have taken issue with their own government do: Challenge it, speak out, engage in a constructive act of protest, and — importantly — accept the consequences of his actions. He should come home to the United States, and be judged by a jury of his peers — not hide behind the cover of an authoritarian regime. Right now, he's running away from the consequences of his actions."
Link to Original Source

Comment Re:Untie the bonuses from the schedule... (Score 1) 186

If the task in front of you is so revolutionary that it has never been done before, then you really are building a prototype. This belongs in the realm of R&D which has its own theories and methodologies for handling project scheduling. However, most software projects are built using a set of known technologies. If you properly decompose your system design, an experienced developer should be able to estimate the amount of time required to code each part with a reasonable margin of error. So you are not asking for the time to build the entire data entry screen, but how long to mockup the interface, then add the data validation, then server interaction, and then the middle ware component that writes the data to the database. So not all that different from most construction projects, which all have their own creative aspects such as architectural design elements, floor plans, and color pallet for the furnishings, along with the more mundane aspects like the amount of time required to weld the support structure, and let the concrete cure.

Comment Re:"This is windows support calling... (Score 1) 129

My personal best is about 50 minutes, before I got bored with them. I told them I only had flaky dial-up service. I kept playing the modem connection sound, then tell them that their software was downloading. After waiting for 5 minutes, asking them rude personal questions in the interim, I tell them that I am at 90%, then shout a lot of expletives, saying that the connection went down, and need to reconnect. Once they passed me off to their tech support people because I told them the issue was on their end of the dial up connection.

Comment Re:Benefits, but still misses the point... (Score 1) 698

How many people walk into police stations and start shooting? Ok, ok, I'm sure it has happened once, somewhere... Does it happen NEARLY as often as school shootings?

Armed teachers, armed parents, would solve this problem. Heck, armed teenagers would solve this problem. When my father went to school, you could still bring your .22 rifle to school, they had a shooting club and people had gun racks in the pack of their pickup trucks. No one would have dreamed of shooting up that school, 20 or 30 kids had guns there.

Police station shootings happen quite frequently: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tag/police-station-shooting/, http://ktla.com/2014/04/07/lapd-officer-wounded-in-shooting-at-police-station/, and http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/West-Deptford-Police-Station-Shooting-270886191.html.

While I do agree that we may have gone too far to in disarming otherwise law-abiding citizens, I am not sure that arming every single teacher would do anything to solve the problem. In fact I can envision many scenarios where an armed teacher (or worse, a student) runs headlong into a situation where they have little to no training, likely complicating the efforts of the police to resolve the situation. The best place for that teacher to be is locked in the classroom with their students, making sure they follow the procedures proscribed for the situation.

Comment Re:Sounds wasteful and stupid ... (Score 1) 61

I think the article eluded to this, that there would be some communication between the device and router before the charging began. I am a bit skeptical about putting this into large appliances like the fridge, however putting this into the base of a desk lamp might work well. That being said it would probably just be better mounted on the wall, or better yet, inside the wall out of view, hardwired into house power.

Comment Re:useful on a highway (Score 1) 215

According to the summary, the radios passively send signals to the tower every few seconds, so you need not transmit a message to be detected. I do agree however that these are likely not useful for detecting speed traps, as you would likely detect officers on parallel side streets, generating a lot of false positives, especially in dense urban areas.

Comment Re:someohow I think (Score 4, Interesting) 215

I am not sure about this. A Federal judge recently found that flashing your headlights to warn oncoming drivers of a speed trap, is protected speech under the First Amendment. You could make an argument that these are a group of concerned citizens tracking the activities of their local police, and publishing their findings.

Comment 90% is still a good rule (Score 1) 170

If you are an enterprise shop, you likely have so many disks spread across so many servers that you probably have an admin team responsible for projecting utilization for the next 12 months, so that procurement and installation costs can budgeted.

For the home user, or a small business, 90% is still a good rule of thumb. I would hate to see some additional process running in the background constantly projecting when the disk will be full. Just throw a warning for the user when you reach 80-90% capacity, and let them figure it out. They are probably more likely to fill their thumb drives than they are the local media.

Comment Re:And make video available when asked (Score 1) 170

Some automated tools could be applied. For example, the audio could be scanned for gun shots, or other loud noises (signs of a struggle), which triggers an automatic hold on that video. The real trick is going to be dealing with the FOIA requests. I could see where the police would want to review and possibly redact sensitive video, such as a conversation with a confidential informant. That means if I make a request for all the video from an officer for the last 90 days, or all officers on duty during a 6 hour time, someone needs to review it all.

Comment Re:tests and coverage? (Score 1) 312

I have never used Uber, but I suspect that in an accident situation you start with the person driving the car you were in, regardless of who is at-fault, then let the insurance companies sort it all out. Your driver could be is a heap of trouble if they are involved in an at-fault accident while driving for one of these services, and it is found that they do not have a policy that covers for-hire services (most home/auto policies don't). You as the passenger could be left cover your own costs, since the drivers policy will likely refuse coverage. The upside for you is that your personal health insurance would pay your costs, then attempt to recover their costs from the driver (or his insurance, and possibly Uber) through subrogation. Your costs would likely be limited to the co-pays and deductibles of your health policy.

1 + 1 = 3, for large values of 1.

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