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Comment: Re:I kind of agree (Score 1) 286

Whilst most jobs don't _require_ coding skills, a lot of them would be done more efficiently if people had those skills.

Depending on the level of your coding skills, you are either harmless, dangerous, or useful.

You need to learn quite a bit to skip over "dangerous" into the "useful" territory.

Comment: Re:This cannot have been legal??? (Score 1) 80

It's not hearsay when the prosecution were the ones (under false pretenses) who were asked by the defendant to arrange the hit.

Police officer says: "He told me that he had hired a hitman" - hearsay.
Police officer says: "He asked me to kill the guy" - not hearsay.

Actually, a bit more complicated. If someone is accused of intimidating witnesses. and the police officer says "I heard him telling Mr. X that he had hired hitmen to kill people giving evidence against him before". That's hearsay as far as hiring hitmen and killing people is concerned, but it is perfectly acceptable evidence for witness intimidation.

Comment: Re:Sounds like good grounds for an appeal, (Score 1) 80

if the sentence is in any way based on an assumption of guilt for a crime he wasn't actually tried for.

I don't think so. The jury has to decide based on evidence whether he is guilty of crimes beyond reasonable doubt. However, the same doesn't apply to sentencing. Sentencing can take your good behaviour into account, and it can take your bad but not criminal behaviour into account. If you have a history of harrassing your neighbour in a non-criminal way, and then you beat him up, your sentence for the beating may very well be higher because of that history.

Comment: Re:The actual battle is not Android vs iOS. (Score 1) 342

by gnasher719 (#49794117) Attached to: The Tricky Road Ahead For Android Gets Even Trickier

That Apple makes a lot more profit on their phones than Samsung and other Android makers do... that's a whole different story. Maybe it simply is the case that Apple users are those that are swayed easiest by advertising, making them pay a massive premium for their phones. And people that already have shown to be happy to buy big in an advertising ploy should be valuable for other advertisers as well.

For many years, Samsung has spent more money on advertising than Apple. Recently with their revenue drop, and with their massive drop in profits, it seems they had to scale their spending back.

Profits are quite simple: They are the difference between what people are willing to pay for a product, that is how much it is worth to them, and what it costs to manufacture and sell the product. So Apple seems to be just very good at making products that are worth a lot of money to people.

Comment: Re:The actual battle is not Android vs iOS. (Score 1) 342

by gnasher719 (#49794075) Attached to: The Tricky Road Ahead For Android Gets Even Trickier

There are two fights. The smartphone maker fight is one. The OS fight is another. Just like there is a fight between OS X and Windows in the PC world.

Not really. The fight is between PC makers and Mac makers (that's Apple). There would be an obvious way to increase the MacOS X market share, which would be to make it available and market it to PCs. And obviously Apple doesn't do that because they would lose more in Mac sales than they would gain in OS sales. (If you think compatibility would be a problem, I think that Dell, HP etc. would be delighted to sell computers that have been thoroughly tested and work fine with MacOS X).

Comment: Re:Android to iDevice (Score 1) 342

by gnasher719 (#49793957) Attached to: The Tricky Road Ahead For Android Gets Even Trickier

PC versus Mac is the same issue... People who say Windows crashes all the time but because they bought cheap hardware.. Hardware at a price point that Apple wouldn't dream about touching. Then they go and spend 3x more but on a Mac and gloat about how stable it is.

The problem that PC manufacturers have: I have no way to find out what is a quality product and what isn't. If PC X costs more than PC Y, then I don't know if it is because X is better or because the seller tries to rip me off. So I buy the cheaper one. The manufacturers building better and more expensive hardware lose out, so they use cheaper and lower quality hardware. And so on and so on.

With a Mac I go to the Apple Store and whatever I buy, it is quality. If I have a problem, I take the Mac to the store and they fix it. Every other store tries to get rid of customers with problems.

Comment: Arrest Donald Knuth? (Score 2) 206

by gnasher719 (#49734149) Attached to: Australian Law Could Criminalize the Teaching of Encryption
Volume 2 of "The Art Of Computer Programming" contains an excellent description of RSA.

Actually, a decent mathematician should figure out RSA if you just remind them that every prime number has a primitive root, and that primitive roots of about half of all primes can be used to solve x^3 = a (modulo p) for primes p, and to solve x^3 = a (modulo pq) for a product of two primes pq if p and q are known, but not if only the product pq is known.

For large primes (like 1024 or 2048 bit) the number of calculations needed are a bit lengthy, but even a naive implementation on a modern computer is fast enough to implement it. Maybe not fast enough for hard disk encryption, but fast enough to encrypt a few megabytes of documents.

Comment: Re:Cui bono? (Score 1) 71

by gnasher719 (#49721091) Attached to: Apple Acquires GPS Start-Up

Why does Apple feel the compulsion to plow money into an inferior map service? It only benefit their iphone niche until they can't sustain a lower end iphone market.

They are just copying a Google strategy. Google does things just to mess up things for competitors. That's why you have Google Apps (take that, Microsoft!) and Android (take that, Apple!). Maps is just a bit of payback. A few billion dollars that don't end up in Google's pocket. That alone is worth it for Apple.

That said, when was the last time you looked at Apple Maps? Used it in London at the weekend, and it looked quite a bit better than Google maps. On a iPad or iPhone, it is ages better.

Comment: Re:call me skeptical (Score 1) 190

What I'm pointing out is that him previously stating that he took control of a virtual plane does not rule out him subsequently taking control of a real plane, though it's not clear from the article just what period "previously" covers, and now I think about it it's vague enough to make little sense whichever way you take it.

But that's about the same as arresting a film team and the actors for bank robbery, after they filmed a movie depicting a bank robbery.

Comment: Re:Both ways? (Score 1) 84

by gnasher719 (#49687743) Attached to: Apple, A123 To Settle Lawsuit Over Poached Battery Engineers

If your start-up (i.e. poor) company is dependent on the work your lead researcher is doing, and an other company offers $bignum to hire her (with a co-hiring bonus for every former cow-irker that follows), and everyone involved except you are in on the deal, how can you possibly bid to keep your top dog, especially since he already has a fairly good understanding of what you can - and cannot - afford to pay?

And what reason can you give why the lead researcher shouldn't be able to make more money?

Comment: Re:Here's the thing (Score 1) 84

by gnasher719 (#49687739) Attached to: Apple, A123 To Settle Lawsuit Over Poached Battery Engineers

everyone has a price, and if you have the dollars, you can use the dollars from your monopoly to poach anyone. This isn't an anti-collusion suit; this is a civil suit about monopoly abuses.

You're being ridiculous. This is a suit about one company not liking that another company offers an employee a better paying job. To which I say "suck it up".

Comment: Re:How Responsible? (Score 1) 152

by gnasher719 (#49684743) Attached to: How Responsible Are App Developers For Decisions Their Users Make?

I doubt that there has ever been a single case in recorded history where a customer has been able to actually write a proper specification for the software that they want.

So therefore there has never been a single case in recorded history where software developers have known what they needed to know to do their jobs. How can you POSSIBLY expect them to do the job right?

In a reasonable world, you pick the right person to do the right job. Gathering requirements and turning them into a proper specification needs a lot of talent, practice, and hard work. Your customer is very unlikely to have the talent or practice. That's the job of the company producing the software to supply the person who can do it.

The job of the software developer is to recognise rubbish specs, push back when the specs are rubbish, and otherwise implement the spec. It's not that difficult.

Comment: Re:There I fixed it for you... (Score 1) 152

by gnasher719 (#49684665) Attached to: How Responsible Are App Developers For Decisions Their Users Make?

Yep, to this day, I"m still amazed that we have to have warning tags on hair blow dryers, that not only have it in print, but also with cartoon like diagrams warning you to NOT use the blow dryer while in the bathtub filled with water.

I'm not amazed at all. People who put their pets into the microwave to dry them will complain to the microwave manufacturer. People who use a hair dryer in the bathtub filled with water don't complain afterwards.

Comment: Re:Finally (Score 1) 866

by gnasher719 (#49680595) Attached to: Religious Affiliation Shrinking In the US

"Hi, I'm Muhammad, I can't write, read or preform simple math. I'm totally illiterate, have epilepsy, like to wear diapers on my head and ride unicorns. Let me tell you about Islam where women are objects, female children, much like Christianity, are rape objects and science must be outlawed at all costs, oh and don't think about drawing a picture of me, or someone could kill you"

Actually, the "don't draw a picture" is a quite sensible rule for muslims, so they don't get confused that Allah is the important thing and Mohammed is just the lowly messenger, after looking at his picture for too long. Even if you are a muslim, drawing a picture of Mohammed should only result in some explanation _why_ a muslim shouldn't draw this. If you are not a muslim, then nobody should care.

Now of course all those people who are not really interested in religion but in reasons to kill other people take this as a good excuse for murder.

"It is better to have tried and failed than to have failed to try, but the result's the same." - Mike Dennison