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Comment Re:after the right people (Score 3, Insightful) 139

Even more interesting is the attorney who's pursuing this. Carl Crowell (based out of Salem, IIRC) is pretty damned prolific about this - enough that he has a rather slick operation (see article) that chews through a lot of these each month. I find it interesting that they're willing to settle for $750/ea (though IMHO that's still a bit too high), while most settlements average $5k-$7.5k or so.

Like most copyright suits, he almost always gets the money via settlement. It all still hinges on IP addresses, the ISP, and how well they keep records, though. I'm guessing that Popcorn Time likely blares your IP addy out nice and loud for the world to see by other torrenters, though one would wonder about sharing a movie in order to sue other sharers over the same movie...

Comment Re:duh? (Score 1) 79

You can use different kinds of evidence different ways. Credible anecdotal evidence can disprove some things, or it can suggest other things, but for the most part can't prove that one thing causes another.

Example: Suppose my friend Larry gets lung cancer a few years after he quit smoking. This disproves the notion that if you quit smoking you are guaranteed not to get lung cancer. It suggests that smoking causes long-term damage to the cells of the lung. It doesn't prove that quitting smoking causes cancer.

Randomized controlled studies are generally the most useful evidence points when it comes to trying to prove causation, but individual studies still can't do that. What you need is a pattern of evidence that includes RCTs and other, independent lines of inquiry.

Comment Programmed behaviour is programmed behaviour. (Score 5, Interesting) 335

If the programming makes it jerk the steering away from a stationary hazard rather than, say, detect it earlier and slow down as it approaches, then it's not suitably programmed for coexistence with unexpected stationary hazards (Not even anything to do with human presence! What if that was a cardboard box and it swerved heavily in case that box "pulled out"?).

If it can't make it's way through a junction where the drivers are following the rules, that's bad programming. If it can't make it's way through a junction where other drivers don't come to a complete halt for it, it's not fit to be on the road with other drivers.

If you want a car to co-exist on the road, it has to be treated as a learner driver. If a learner driver swerved at a non-hazard, they would fail. If a learner driver refused to make progress at a junction because the masses didn't open up before it, they would fail. So should an automated car.

Unless - and this is important - you are saying that automated cars should only operate on automated roads where such hazards should never be possible and they are deliberately NOT programmed to take account of such things. Which, in itself, is expensive (separate roads with separate rules with no human drivers), stupid (that's otherwise known as a "train line", and because they can't do anything about it it will hurt more when it does happen), and dangerous (because what happens if a cardboard box blows over the automated road? etc.).

Program to take account of these things, or don't plan on driving on the road. The safety record is exemplary but equally there are only a handful of them and the eyes of the world are on them, and there are still humans behind the wheel, and even by miles travelled each one is probably dwarved by a single long-distance driver over the course of a year - and it's not hard to find a long-distance driver who's not had an accident for years.

If you're going to be on the roads, then you need to be able to take account of all these things, the same as any learner driver. Sure, you didn't hurt anyone by swerving or not pulling out, but equally - in the wording of my first driving test failure - you have "failed to make adequate progress" while driving.

A car sitting on a driveway would have an even better safety record but, in real life, it's still bog-useless compared to a human. Similarly for any automated vehicle that just stops at a junction because it can't pull out, or swerves out of the way of a non-hazard (and potentially weighs up collision with non-hazard vs collision with small child and gets it wrong).

Comment Re:Older browsers (Score 1) 38

In the same way nobody really writes web browsers for DOS anymore - yes.

You might find a niche project that lets you bring those heap-of-old-junk browsers onto the net via some proxy or setting change or patch or similar, but it'll be unofficial and unsupported.

And nobody with a website will care, they'll just tell you to upgrade. Like nobody will sell you new versions of Microsoft Office for DOS - stick with it on what you have and watch as you can't view other's content in newer formats, or upgrade.

Nobody's saying leap to Windows 10 here. We're saying stop using a browser that's over THREE TIMES AS OLD as an obsolete computer (e.g. 2001 for IE6) to secure your banking transactions when it has known security flaws that CANNOT be fixed.

Comment Re:duh? (Score 1) 79

The point is that the relationship between sleep and the strength of the immune system has been well know and tested for years...

For a certain value of "well-known" and "tested". You could actually read the paper abstract and see what was novel about this particular study.

Comment Re:duh? (Score 4, Interesting) 79

Knowing it in principle and knowing when to put that knowledge to work are two different things.

I used to catch *everything* that was going around, including some things most other people didn't. I got sick three, maybe four times a year. I always put it down to having a lousy immune system, until in one checkup I mentioned to my doctor that I'm a pretty loud snorer. "Better have you checked for sleep apnea," he said, and sure enough I had it, although only a relatively mild case. He prescribed sleeping on a CPAP machine, and since I've been doing that I almost never get sick. Maybe once in four years.

Anecdotal evidence, I know, but my point is this. Now that there's research demonstrating the impact of sleep on immune system performance it makes sense to make questions about sleep quantity and quality a routine part of health surveillance. I just happened to mention snoring to my doctor on one visit; if I'd been asked twenty years earlier it would have saved my employers a lot of sick time and me a lot of misery.

Comment Re:Here's the thing about disasters. (Score 1) 228

A win-win game is not the only kind of non-zero-sum game there is. Suppose I set up a game in which the amount I win is 1/10 of what everyone else loses. I win $100; everyone else loses $1000. If I add up the net gains in the whole game, what we have as a net loss of $900 for all players. It's not fair; it's not reasonable for the community of players to favor such rules, but nonetheless I'm still up $100.

Broken windows may not be a net good thing for the community as a whole, but it certainly is a good thing for the glaziers.

Comment Re:What I read: (Score 1) 228

Have deployed Windows 8. Twice, actually, at two different workplaces. The "sign in with a Microsoft account"? Not a big deal. Ordinary imaging and group-policy processes block that before you even see an option for it. Really not anything to care about in the grand scheme of a rollout of hundreds of desktops. Additionally - if you want your people to use Office 365, etc. then you already have that to deal with anyway, so you just use Federated AD and it's - again - not an issue.

8 is perfectly business-ready. 10 isn't far behind. But, as you hint at, neither is significantly better or more worthwhile that 7 with the same stuff. 10 is boring. It's not advanced enough. It does nothing new, just hides shit that you still need. And does so in nasty ways, in some cases. But 7 and 8 had those problems to some extent, we just know how to deal with them already.

The best of 10 and 8 taken together just isn't enough to warrant a 7.1, let alone an 8.0, 8.1 or 10.0.

Comment Re:Free speech hundreds of miles out in the desert (Score 3, Insightful) 179

I'll bet a lot of people love the fact that all this "free speech" will be taking place hundreds of miles out in the desert...

You don't know people very well then. As Lord Macaulay observed in his The History of England from the Accession of James the Second,

“The Puritans hated bear-baiting, not because it gave pain to the bear, but because it gave pleasure to the spectators.”

You see it is not enough for prigs and busybodies that they're not involved in any way in the things you do that give you pleasure; their problem is with you enjoying something they don't enjoy, or perhaps understand.

The unfacts, did we have them, are too imprecisely few to warrant our certitude.