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Comment: Re:Lifehacking (Score 1) 112

by gnasher719 (#49567187) Attached to: New Privacy Threat: Automated Vehicle Occupancy Detection

Couldn't this system be easily defeated by using an inflatable person or maybe even just a stick with a cut out of Bill Oddie's face glued on the top, resting on your passengers seat?

You're asking "couldn't I defeat this by committing fraud"? Quite obviously if you get caught, you won't be fined for driving in the carpool lane, but for driving in the carpool lane and committing fraud to get away with it. I could easily see you getting a criminal conviction.

Comment: Re:I will never understand (Score 5, Interesting) 99

by gnasher719 (#49552207) Attached to: Vizio, Destroyer of Patent Trolls
Simple way to level things is what is used in Germany - fees are limited to a fixed small percentage of the value being argued about, but if you demand a large amount and get only a small amount, you actually count as the loser (so a large corporation suing you for 100 million dollars and awarded $100 would actually pay 99.9999% of the total cost).

In the case of patent trolls demanding huge money, even if they are rewarded a small amount, they would have to pay all the cost.

Comment: Re:German "unfair competition" law (Score 1) 301

So Disney ensures that every quarter, at least one copy of Steamboat Willy is sold. Or they simply show it once a year on the Disney Channel, which means they are making money off it.

We are talking about Germany here. Judges there don't like it if you game the system. Steamboat Willy would have to be on sale publicly, so that everyone who wants to watch it can do so. And judges can see if the price is exorbitant so that no actual sales are made.

So it covers my reasoning against eternal copyright: That copyright makes works disappear if the copyright owner doesn't care about it anymore. It doesn't cover lots of people's reasoning: That eternal copyright is bad because we want things for free.

Comment: German "unfair competition" law (Score 1) 301

Before software was protected by copyright, which happened sometime in the 80's or so, in Germany software was protected by "unfair competition law". Quite simply, if A hires developers for a million to write software and sells it, and B just copies the software, that is unfair competition. However, "unfair competition" only applies if A is actually selling the software; if A doesn't sell it, then B isn't competing with A at all, whether fair or unfair. Obviously now software is under copyright, so things have changed.

With very old works the same could be done: Let them run out of copyright. However, it would be "unfair competition" and thus illegal to compete with the copyright holder. So as long as Disney is selling Steamboat Willy, it would be protected. If they stop selling it, you can copy it and even sell it freely.

Comment: Re:Good (Score 1) 301

However, if it's in the public domain, there is no monetary incentive to locate, digitize, and restore such a film.

There is monetary incentive if you can put the movie onto a shelf in the shops and sell it. Most people don't actually copy stuff. And those with huge illegal collections don't actually listen to or watch all the stuff that they copied. So you have to be careful estimating how many sales would be lost. And at last, you _can_ put DRM onto works in the public domain if you feel like it.

On the other hand, if people are worried about cultural values being lost, and these people are not the copyright holders, then works being in the public domain is actually very helpful for society. Because these people _can_ restore movies without having one foot in jail.

Comment: Re:Apple may outlive Acer - But will they make PCs (Score 1) 417

by gnasher719 (#49541881) Attached to: We'll Be the Last PC Company Standing, Acer CEO Says

I could easily see Apple abandoning the PC market. As a business they make most of the money on mobile devices & iStore. They continue to make good hardware in their laptops but it would be easy to see them decide it wasn't worth it if the pc market deteriorated further in the future.

Apple makes more profit selling PCs than all the other manufacturers together, and these profits are growing year after year after year. Why would they get out of that business?

Comment: Anyone with DRM protected content? (Score 1) 366

by gnasher719 (#49538265) Attached to: iTunes Stops Working For Windows XP Users
Apple stopped selling music with DRM over six years ago. But it would seem that the problem is connecting to the Apple Store and purchasing (which hurts mostly Apple) and playing music and videos with DRM _on that computer_. Everything should continue to work phone on iPod, iPhone and iPad.

Anyone here who has actually listened to or viewed DRM protected content from Apple on Windows XP in the last year?

Comment: Re:Is that what that was? (Score 1) 74

by gnasher719 (#49535263) Attached to: Apple Offers Expedited Apple Watch Order Lottery To Developers

They already hold a lottery for WWDC, as it is far more popular than the number of people they can actually hold in the largest venue. And that too is a lottery to get the chance to purchase. So it's not a new thing.

They had to, after one developer conference was sold out within less than two minutes...

Comment: Re:Pretty soon... (Score 1) 299

I'm not sure what exactly is going on with GÃbbel's family, but Hitler's works are owned by the state of Bavaria, and they do what they can to prevent any neo-nazis from copying it (other people don't seem to be very interested in these works). It might not be about the money, but about preventing publication. Which in this case would be understandable.

Comment: Re: lol, Rand sucking up to the dorks (Score 1) 206

Why not? Isn't it like shrinkwrap licences on software where you can't review the terms until you've agreed to them?

Where do you see that? Usually what you get is that you don't have a valid license until you review the terms and agree to them, and if you disagree, you can return the product.

Comment: Re:Test of Time (Score 1) 175

by gnasher719 (#49515343) Attached to: Swift Tops List of Most-Loved Languages and Tech

Besides, who doesn't like a language which has the entire unicode character set available for variable names, including the symbols? Can make for some colorful code.

Actually, you can create completely invisible variable names. Shame that superscript 2 and superscript 3 are not valid for custom operators.

The moving cursor writes, and having written, blinks on.