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Comment: where are the police? (Score 1) 699

by e-scetic (#31237320) Attached to: School Spying Scandal Gets Even More Bizarre

If the school was spying on kids in their bedrooms then they have child porn in their possession. Why aren't the police confiscating their equipment? Why isn't the FBI involved? They are probably remaining silent precisely because they know as soon as they admit to having any pics they're caught dead to rights and it'll be grounds for a search warrant.

But if you ask me, there's already grounds for a warrant here...so what the hell is going on?

Comment: strategic advantage (Score 1) 125

by e-scetic (#31023144) Attached to: Google and NSA Teaming Up

The information gleaned from Google will probably give the US a little bit of an advantage in the coming cold war against China. Additionally, this kind of cooperation without divulging proprietary code or sacrificing anyone's privacy would serve as a much needed template for other US companies to share vital attack info with the US government. Right now every Chinese company probably gives the Chinese government full and unfettered access to their systems, a considerable advantage for the Chinese. Democracy/capitalism is probably to the US's considerable disadvantage when it comes to cyber warfare/security.

Of course, we know the US telcos have sold their soul to the NSA but maybe the information gleaned by having all US telco communications on tap is of limited use. That kind of info isn't much help when Google (or any other company with offices in China) is attacked from within China, attacks enabled by inside Chinese employees doing their patriotic duty.

This kind of issue is probably being very closely watched by any company with offices there - it probably goes without saying that if you keep your closely guarded proprietary code there, you might as well be giving it to the Chinese. I doubt they respect NDA's.

Comment: Re:Great, still doesn't fix the Houston problem. (Score 1) 494

by e-scetic (#30819376) Attached to: The Year of the E-Bicycle

As a bicyclist myself, who prefers to ride than drive even though I can afford some decent wheels, Houston is totally out. If I were ever offered a job there, regardless how much I was offered the answer would be "Houston?! Fuck no."

As an environmentalist, you'd get the same answer...

As someone who tries to be ethically, socially or politically responsible, ditto...

As a vegetarian, likewise...

Isn't it interesting how car culture automatically precludes certain types or groups of people? It's not just Houston I would say no to, there are cities around my area that I don't even consider when I make any kind of important decision about buying a house, work, going to school, etc., simply because it doesn't support my way of life.

Comment: Re:Shouldn't we be happy? (Score 1) 372

by e-scetic (#30779316) Attached to: WHO To Investigate Handling of Swine Flu Information, Vaccine Orders

I haven't had a flu shot in more than a decade and, miraculously, I'm still alive and the flu, when I do get it, is your standard issue flu of normal severity.

I've never bought into the hype, it has never seemed worth it. The stats, which are always publicly available and easy to find, have never struck me as anything to be alarmed about. But also I refuse to inject something in myself which contains mercury. Try finding the non-thimerosol version of the shot, apparently this is something extremely difficult to do.

As one medical professional told me: "But mercury is in fish so it's safe!" Uh huh. I don't eat fish either.

Tinfoil hat time: The flu shot is probably a great way to dumb down the populace.

Comment: wtf??!! (Score 1) 207

by e-scetic (#30405996) Attached to: Global Deforestation Demoed In Google Earth
First hundred or so responses to the OP don't seem to like his lamenting that there's no satellite data showing the forest situation in the US, are busy asserting that there are more trees than ever before (with nary a citation or link in sight to reinforce this claim, but I guess that's because there's no comparative satellite data available...?), and I get the overall impression they really don't appreciate Google putting out this capability either, or the OP reporting it. Clampdown in effect, in other words.

Comment: The sky is buffering.... (Score 1) 418

by e-scetic (#30381634) Attached to: Gigantic Spiral of Light Observed Over Norway; Rocket To Blame?
...a la Youtube. Weren't the Russians experimenting with a type of wobbly missile with an unpredictable trajectory? And wouldn't a perfect spherical explosion like that mean it took place in zero gravity? Otherwise, must be nice living next to the wormhole. Your pagh is strong, my son.

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