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Comment: Land of the Free! (Score 5, Insightful) 370

by beh (#45844697) Attached to: Illinois Law Grounds PETA Drones Meant To Harass Hunters

Strange - people fishing should be "free" to fish unmonitored... ...people hunting should be "free" to hunt unmonitored... ...people on the Internet should be "free" to be monitored at will...

To me that sounds like future terrorist plots could best be discussed on a hunting trip, because you have the gun lobby ensuring that you'll be undisturbed...

Comment: Well... (Score 3, Interesting) 60

by beh (#45790731) Attached to: Houston Expands Downtown Surveillance, Unsure If It Helps

'Officials say data is not kept to determine if the cameras are driving down crime.'

It seems to me, that if there _WERE_ concrete evidence of crime being reduced, they _WOULD_ keep data.

If the cities would collect data, that does NOT show a drop in crime, then city officials might be criticized for the whole operation... ...without the data - it's hard to nail them down on it...

Comment: Re:Music and its benefits (Score 1) 328

by beh (#45723961) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Can Digital Music Replace Most Instrumental Musicians?

I'm not sure I agree with your first statement there - "market driven life" - the lack of promotion for good musicians is not necessarily market driven, but marketing driven - and not purely marketing, but also the risk-averseness of the businesses behind it.

New "edgy" movies don't really happen any more, because noone is willing to put a lot of risk into something _new_ and untested, whereas honing the craft and doing another big blockbuster type movie that only mildly diverges from previous successes makes it easier to convince backers.

(No, you don't need to point to a couple of counter examples that show that people do dare new things - just look at the mainstream and where the big money is.)

In a sense it was the same with the housing boom - once it started, it became easier and easier to sell people into the idea - and "just look at the market - it just keeps rising and rising - you can't lose!".

I agree with you, that the value of music cant be measured in dollars or pounds - as far as the consumer goes. For the producer, if something can't be measured in dollars or pounds - that just sounds like taking a safe bet that the investment is going to be a write-off.

If I were to offer you to produce an album by some outside artist - no matter whether _you_ personally liked that artist - before you put significant amounts of money towards producing their idea on a big scale, would you do it if you didn't see a "measurable" result coming out of it?

We see this kind of thing partially happening in crowd-funding efforts - and there it works, because noone really bets the farm on the endeavour in question. I've recently signed up on two kickstarter campaigns that _I_ think are a good idea and I want the product that comes out of it - but in either case, I'm not sure whether I'd invest my livelihood into those projects, as they may just be too niche, and my own funds are too limited that I could afford just to go on a hunch and ignore the chance of a loss. Big business might have that kind of financial means - but there it is about whether the CEO feels safe enough in his post that (s)he can engage in a big risk - so, will the CEO stake his/her own future on a hunch, or play it safe?

Comment: resources for future generations... (Score 1) 273

by beh (#45640205) Attached to: Scientists Discover Huge Freshwater Reserves Beneath the Ocean

The rubbish will largely degrade. The rubbish that won't degrade (plastics, etc.) will be a resource for future generations.

Interesting take - I envy future generations, which will have amazing resources like, say, debts the level we can't even dream of yet.

You think they might be able to just climb up to the moon on the pile of IOUs from the US, Japan and other western democracies?

Another valuable resource, no doubt will be the dead oceans - from overfishing and animals killed from plastic rubbish; if only they could find something else to eat.

Comment: The problem with all this... (Score 4, Insightful) 273

by beh (#45637919) Attached to: Scientists Discover Huge Freshwater Reserves Beneath the Ocean

Before we try and get and that additional freshwater - has anyone found another possible _deposit_ location for all the rubbish and toxic waste we're producing? ...even if we would get at that water, it would only be a stop-gap -- right now, most seem to think that there will always be some new source of whatever resource we need to keep our "unsustainable" pace going...

It's the same about what people say that the shale oil will give the US enough oil for 100 years -- it's _maybe_ 100 years _at the current pace of consumption. But if there is a 100 years worth of more energy - why even _try_ and save? Why not even indulge in even more energy-intensive enterprises?

The same goes for finding huge amounts of new fresh-water - we'll just find ways to consume it even faster, instead of trying to focus on limiting the damage we do to the planet, and treating any additional resources as 'emergency rations' that we won't touch unless there is no other way.

Comment: Is this really a _good_ idea? (Score 4, Insightful) 177

by beh (#45430515) Attached to: Military Robots Expected To Outnumber Troops By 2023

This is not to say that it'll be hard to stop the proliferation of military robots, but - is this really a good idea?

Sure, us Westerners, we can say how good a thing this may be - on the other hand, Gaddafi had some problems after a while with his troops seeing the misery they were spreading. To some extent, the same is true for Assad's Syria..

Can you picture what would happen, if rulers like those got their hands on military robots that will just unquestioningly mow down their own people, if the people don't like their "esteemed" ruler any more?

Or - picture them in the hands of North Korea...

Once they get deployed in one nation, no matter how well "behaved" that one nation will be, they will appear in other places - under less enlightened "leadership".

Comment: Re:Complete overhaul please (Score 1) 462

by beh (#45323967) Attached to: Re: Daylight Saving Time, I would most like

To some extent you need to do that anyway - people arrive at work or go to lunch at different times in different countries... opening times vary from nation to nation - same timezone or not...

public holidays change from nation to nation...

And for things that are the same - all you'd need to know is the new "offset"...

(and, yes, I've lived and worked in 3 different (European) countries - so I have first hand experience of how different things can be around here - and that is without going to culturally more different places...)

Comment: Re:WWW (Score 2) 406

by beh (#44957291) Attached to: Can There Be a Non-US Internet?

Sorry, WWW is the web - nothing else.
But, yes - commonly, when people say "the internet" they do mean the web.

tel URLs may be part of 'the web' in the sense that you may put tel:-links in your web pages -- but that doesn't make tel: or ftp: or telnet: or gopher: whatever other protocol identifier you may have "the web".

The Web was invented at Cern, not the Internet - the Internet has been around long before then.

If you can still find it, maybe have a look at Ed Krol's "The Whole Internet" (see wikipedia) - a book published in the "earlier" days of the WWW - one that helped really helped popularize "the net"...

With that, the web itself IS a subset of what the internet is - the mere fact that it allows for URL schemes to link to non-www resources doesn't make it less of a subset; unlike gopher, ftp - which didn't have those links...

Comment: dial-up modem || dial-up connection (Score 2) 410

by beh (#44871697) Attached to: The last time I used a dial-up modem was...

Hmm - last time I used a dial-up _modem_ was around 1999...
Last time I used a dial-up _connection_ was late 1996... ...after that I used two dial-up modems in leased-line mode on an analog leased line... (yes, the standard AT command set does have an option to assume leased-line mode and just try and connect instead of dialling)

Anyhow - both neatly fall into the 10-20 year category - so, not a biggie in terms of which choice to go for... ;-)

Comment: Re:Who is getting ripped off here? (Score 1) 106

by beh (#44610689) Attached to: Instagram "Likes" Worth More Than Stolen Credit Cards

The person getting ripped off is the then genuine customer which might buy something from a company based on who well 'liked' they are.

If you use a stolen credit card, you can only use it very carefully - as you need to make sure that noone can trace the use of the stolen card back to you.

If you buy fake likes, who can prove how many of your likes are genuine? If you use them to lure customers to your site and your products to sell them, the customer will have to pay for those goods and can't claim them back from the credit card company based on "those likes gave the wrong impression, so they must obviously have been fake, therefore I want my money back!" - or, you could, but your card company doesn't have to refund you, and you will have a tough time proving that you bought the product based on "fake likes", as you will have no way of proving how many likes were genuine and how many were bought.

The fake likes will probably stay with you and help you for longer than any stolen card number.

Comment: Re:coz they get more excited? (Score 1, Redundant) 134

by beh (#42576313) Attached to: Why Do Entrepreneurs Innovate Better Than Managers?

Good points, anonymous coward... :-)

There may be a second point - it seems the study may see it the wrong way around: I'm not a manager, but I do have ideas on how we can improve things at various employers; I guess many, probably even most, people have ideas on how to improve a business - or a new idea for some other business. But not everyone feels they have the business acumen to become entrepreneurs.

Don't you think that having ideas comes first? How many people go out to become entrepreneurs without _any_ clue what they want to do?

The second point is also cultural - as a manager within a company you have some power in shaping your team and the culture within your team. But that's only true if the team starts with you. If you 'inherit' a team, you first need to ensure you get the culture you want - otherwise, like anon coward wrote, you have more time to spend 'defending' your ideas (and why they should take away time from your normal work), rather than being free to shape everything - as far as your budget constraints allow.

It is the quality rather than the quantity that matters. - Lucius Annaeus Seneca (4 B.C. - A.D. 65)