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Comment: Re:How could they? (Score 1) 179

by belmolis (#48826187) Attached to: Marriot Back-Pedals On Wireless Blocking
That isn't really true. There are specific rights that you can't give up. You can't, for example, submit to assault except in limited circumstances (e.g. surgery). But, in general, you can contract away all sorts of rights. Lots of contracts require disputes to be settled by arbitration, for example, which forces you to vie up your right to go to court. Such contracts are, in general, valid and enforced.

Comment: nothing like Star Trek (Score 1) 122

by belmolis (#48816041) Attached to: Google Aims To Be Your Universal Translator
Google's current effort is nothing like the Star Trek Universal Translator, and it is exceedingly unlikely that anything ever will be. The STUT is supposed to be able to translate languages that it has not been programmed to translate and has never been exposed to before. Existing translators, including Google's, can only work with languages that they already know.

Comment: Re:what China should do is (Score 4, Interesting) 288

by belmolis (#48682161) Attached to: The Interview Bombs In US, Kills In China, Threatens N. Korea
That isn't entirely true. North Korea is not well suited for agriculture, and due to the war and mismanagement the economy is a mess, but it has large ore deposits. Mining is a significant component of the economy even now, and with good management and investment for infrastructure (such as adequate electrical power) could grow considerably.

Comment: shot in own foot (Score 4, Informative) 164

by belmolis (#48296627) Attached to: Disney Patents a Piracy Free Search Engine
I think that Disney may have shot themselves in the foot. A patent must by definition describe the method in sufficient detail that a person of ordinary expertise in the field can figure out how to implement it by reading the patent. Since the patent merel describes a ranking algorithm, it can be trivially inverted to select sites likely to contain pirated material.

Comment: why sue the execs? (Score 1) 212

by belmolis (#47740051) Attached to: Oregon Sues Oracle For "Abysmal" Healthcare Website
Can anyone explain why Oregon is suing six executives as well as the company itself? Normally in such commercial litigation it is only the company that is liable, not individual employees, and if Oregon thinks that the executives went beyond the pale, you'd expect criminal charges. Furthermore, the executives presumably don't have enough assets to contribute substantially to the damages sought. So why are the executives defendants?

Comment: can you copy back from these? (Score 1) 317

by belmolis (#47570273) Attached to: Ford, GM Sued Over Vehicles' Ability To Rip CD Music To Hard Drive
As I understand it, these devices allow you to copy from CDs onto their internal hard drive so that you can keep your own selection of music on the device. Is it possible to use these devices to burn a CD? AS far as I know, the answer is no. If they can't burn a CD, then they cannot be used for illicit copying.

Comment: Re:Or, you could... (Score 1) 405

Some publishers already CAN'T sell through Amazon. For example, I have a book that is published by the College of New Caledonia. My book is not available through Amazon because Amazon demands a huge discount (70%, as I recall) from all publishers, including non-profits like this one. In order to sell its books through Amazon, they would have to hugely increase the retail price so that the heavily discounted amount they would receive from Amazon would cover their costs.

Gravity is a myth, the Earth sucks.