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Comment Re:How dare they... (Score 1) 356 356

Whether it's you misinterpreting them, or them being put badly makes no difference. The fact is that there has never been an issue with apps creating free accounts on services

Again, it sounds like you're just assuming "Oh, they could never do something that stupid, of course that's allowed." When it looks like that's exactly why apple is rejecting apps. The external authentication/creating accounts. And that is why everyone is saying what apple is doing is stupid and going too far.

I'll give you another quote from the dropbox forums.

My app update just got rejected with the old sdk that doesn't have a link to the desktop stuff. It never leaves the app and there is no option to buy anything. They said providing account registration for accounts that may carry a subscription is not appropriate.

Apple is rejecting apps for allowing people to create a free account that may be updated later. Simple as that. And I think the reason you deny that so fiercely is because you realize how stupid that is

Comment Re:How dare they... (Score 1) 356 356

I'll admit, i don't have a version of the dropbox SDK to check, but i'm going by what the dropbox developers are saying

Here is a version of the iOS SDK trhat removes both the "Desktop Version" link and the create account link.

"Apple is rejecting apps that use the Dropbox SDK because we allow users to create accounts,"

I find it hard to believe i'm misinterpreting those quotes that badly. Because that sounds like the problem is "creating accounts"

Comment Re:How dare they... (Score 1) 356 356

The issue was definitely the ability to sign up for a free account. Just read apple's rejection notice that was posted

We found that your app provides access to external mechanisms for purchases or subscriptions to be used in the app, which is not in compliance with the App Store Review Guidelines.

Specifically, your app enables to user to create accounts with Dropbox and Google.

When a user creates an account through the mobile link given, they are not upsold. There are no links to purchase a pro account. They simply enter account details, then they have a free account. No purchasing of any kind goes on in the places where the app links. Apple has stated that this is a problem because of the fact that they can later turn this account into a paid subscription, and apple won't get a cut. Which seems like a giant overreach to me.

Dropbox's statement confirms this

"Apple is rejecting apps that use the Dropbox SDK because we allow users to create accounts,"

The reason the new SDK is fine is that it removes the ability for users to sign up for a dropbox account. If you don't have an account, you're just supposed to figure out on your own that you need to go to dropbox.com and register... And that's stupid. Apple has gone way too far with this one.

Comment Re:How dare they... (Score 2) 356 356

Modifying your analogy

Your store lets people come in and play games against each other. Someone comes in and says "Hey, you know, this game can be better if you go to this website and read the strategy there." You kick him out of the store and ban him from ever mentioning the website, because it happens to sell cards on an unrelated section of the website, and selling cards is banned in your store.

That is what apple is doing here. An app has dropbox integration as a feature. The user clicks on that integration and is prompted for a dropbox user name and password. There is also a button if the user does not have a dropbox account. If that button is clicked the app checks to see if the dropbox app is installed, and if not, gives them the url to register for dropbox, which is opened in Safari. This registration is completely free. Apple bans the app because the user could possibly use that dropbox url to make account and then later pay for dropbox pro and apple won't get a cut on that.

This is a major difference between an app skirting the "selling premium content" rule by linking to a url, and an app linking to a registration for a free account that has optional paid extras. Cause i'm pretty sure Apple is now saying that no app is allowed to link to google registration, facebook registration, or anything... That seems pretty absurd to me

Comment Standard License for User Submitted Content (Score 2) 219 219

Yeah, not really getting the whole uproar here...

The terms quoted are pretty much necessary for any site that allows user submitted content. That's the way copyright law works. If they want to display something on a webpage, they need a license to do it. If they want to convert a word document into a .pdf, that's a derivitave work. Same with showing you a thumbnail of the image you uploaded. I guarantee that 95% of the sites out there have a similar clause in their terms of service. For instance: just take a look at slashdot's own terms of service. Click that terms button down at the bottom of the page and what do you get:

submitting user retains ownership of such Geeknet Public Content; with respect to publicly-available statistical content which is generated by the site to monitor and display content activity, such content is owned by Geeknet. In each such case, the submitting user grants Geeknet the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable, non-exclusive, transferable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, and display such Content (in whole or part) worldwide and/or to incorporate it in other works in any form, media, or technology now known or later developed, all subject to the terms of any applicable license

Looks very similar, doesn't it...

Comment Re:Reasonable expectation of privacy (Score 2, Interesting) 182 182

My main issue with that is viewing this as a private person to person conversation. These are emails that are sent to a completely anonymous email address that the sender has no idea what's going to happen to them.

Say I make a craigslist ad that says, "Hey, I'm looking for sex, call me at +4790369389, and you call that number, and it goes to A loudspeaker that broadcasts your voice to the public. You call that number and yell out that you're looking for sex, and here's your name and email. Am I now liable for broadcasting your public information to the world, or is that your own damn fault for not realizing what that number did.

So what if i make an email address that forwards your email verbatim to an email list? Is that the same, or do you expect more privacy from an anonymous email address than an anonymous phone number?

Look, I have no problem with expecting privacy on person to person conversations. However, I have a very hard time considering an email sent to a completely anonymous email address with which you have had no prior correspondence to be a private person to person conversation.

Comment Re:Alarmist bullshit - and not the first time, eit (Score 4, Insightful) 457 457

They can, like anyone else, decide whether you've violated their TOS. If they decide you have, then they either cancel your account or, if you've been doing something blatantly illegal, they can bring it to the attention of the fuzz.

That's the thing. This ruling says that violating the ToS on a website is in itself a federal crime.

The idea is that there is a law saying that "unauthorized access to a computer" is considered hacking and is federal crime. Because Lori Drew violated the Terms of Service, her access to myspace's servers were unauthorized, therefore, she gets convicted of computer hacking.

That's the only thing she was actually convicted of: Violating Myspace's Terms of Service. As various articles have pointed out, treating a terms of service violation as a federal offense is absurd. If someone under 18 does a google search (google's ToS says you need to be 18), do they deserve to spend a year in jail? According to this ruling, they violated the Terms of Service, and that alone is computer abuse, and they're guilty.


Scientists Add Emotions To Robotic Head 124 124

DeviceGuru writes "Claiming that service-class robots will one day be pervasive, researchers at the University of the West of England's Bristol Robotics Laboratory (BRL) have begun investigating ways to make robots seem more human. As part of a project to enhance robot/human relationships, BRL has created a robotic head that can exhibit emotions, based on both verbal and non-verbal cues. Check out the videos in the article — especially the slightly creepy one in which the robot contemplates its purpose and its relationship to its environment."

What's the Best Game Console of All Time? 479 479

The C|Net Crave blog has up an article exploring the history of console gaming, and wonders aloud about the pecking order of the various systems. "Gaming is so subjective that there is no single "greatest" system ever. It might sound like a cop-out, but it really depends on what standards you're using and what generation you grew up in. I loved the SNES, and would personally call it the greatest system of all time. However, the NES and PlayStation could both easily be called the best, based on the standards they set and the advances they presented to gaming." The Guardian follows up this piece, noting that the article's rose-colored recollections of the SNES days may not be entirely accurate. Subjective or not, it's a good question: which consoles have a valid place in history and which ones should be forgotten?

Research Reveals Mislaid Microprocessor Megahertz 99 99

slashdottit! tm
ransom1982 noted a new article on The Register that says "Not only are chip companies regularly releasing ever-faster microprocessors, but new research has revealed that modern CPUs actually lose megahertz over time." This makes it even more complicated to compare the performance of Intel and AMD CPUs since you have differing architecture, clockspeeds AND the year of manufacture to consider. Buyer beware!

Wireless Power Now A Reality 197 197

slashdottit! tm
CSMastermind writes "CNN is reporting on a breakthrough technology. A startup called Powercast has developed and patented a device, the size of a dime and costing 5$ to make, which allows power to be transmitted wirelessly. The device has already gained FCC approval and the company has inked deals with the likes of Phillips. From the article: 'Powercast says it has signed nondisclosure agreements to develop products with more than 100 companies, including major manufacturers of cell phones, MP3 players, automotive parts, temperature sensors, hearing aids, and medical implants. The last of those alone could be a multibillion-dollar market: Pacemakers, defibrillators, and the like require surgery to replace dead batteries. But with a built-in Powercast receiver, those batteries could last a lifetime. '"

Submission + - SWIFT applies for Safe Harbor Protections

KDR_11k writes: The Belgium-based Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT, the system used for all international bank transfers) is now applying for Safe Harbor protections in the US following a dispute with the EU over handing data to US authorities (of course with subpoenas). EU data protection laws don't allow giving peronal information to other entities without the consent of the person the information is about which already caused the dispute over handing passenger data to US authorities. SWIFT hopes that with these Safe Harbor protections they will no longer be forced to give up information they aren't allowed to but Safe Harbor does not apply to banking organizations. Now it depends on whether SWIFT is a banking institution (they claim they aren't) and whether they are a data processor or controller (they claim the former, apparently data protection laws only apply to the latter).

The EU's proposed solution is that SWIFT should abandon its US data center to bring its data out of range of US officials.
The Courts

Submission + - Top Canadian Court strikes down detention law

athar writes: "The Canadian Supreme Court, in an unanimous 9-0 decision, struck down the security certificate regime in Canada, whereby foreigners could be detained indefinitely on the basis of secret evidence, with no real ability to challenge their detention. The Court ruled that the regime violated the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and has given the government one year to rectify the regime. The decision is in stark contrast to the current legal situation in the United States."

Streaming Patent Buoys RealNetworks 133 133

rishimathew writes writes to tell us The New York Times is reporting that RealNetworks recently received a patent for a specific way to stream multimedia content over the internet. From the article: "The patent, which is described as being for a 'multimedia communications system and method for providing audio on demand to subscribers' (No. 6,985,932), describes the idea of permitting a PC user to play back audio, video and other information on a PC. RealNetworks executives said the technology was distinguished from other similar systems by the fact that it permitted "intelligent" streaming of data in potentially congested networks."

Real Users never use the Help key.