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+ - SpaceX's Challenge Against Blue Origins' Patent Fails to Take Off->

Submitted by speedplane
speedplane (552872) writes "As was previously discussed on Slashdot, back in September SpaceX challenged a patent owned by Blue Origin. The technology concerned landing rockets at sea. Yesterday, the judges in the case issued their opinion stating that they are unable to initiate review of the patent on the grounds brought by SpaceX.

Although at first glance this would appear to be a Blue Origin win, looking closer, the judges explained that Blue Origin's patent lacks sufficient disclosure, effectively stating that the patent is invalid, but not on the specific grounds brought by SpaceX:

Because claim 14 lacks adequate structural support for some of the means-plus-function limitations, it is not amenable to construction. And without ascertaining the breadth of claim 14, we cannot undertake the necessary factual inquiry for evaluating obviousness with respect to differences between the claimed subject matter and the prior art.

If SpaceX wants to move forward against Blue Origin, this opinion bodes well for them, but they will need to take their case in front of a different court."
Link to Original Source

+ - Apple, Microsoft and Google need just one mobile improvement -- battery life->

Submitted by Mark Wilson
Mark Wilson (3799011) writes "Let’s face it, you’ve picked the mobile operating system you like. Whether you’ve opted for an iPhone, a Lumia handset or a device running Android, the chances are you’re not going to switch allegiances no matter what others may do or say to try to convince you otherwise. At the same time, few people would argue that their handset of choice is perfect.

You’ve picked your side when it comes to OS, but what about the handset itself? Apple, Samsung, HTC et al keep releasing slightly tweaked versions of last year’s handset, perhaps adding a faster processor, a larger screen and more memory. One thing is constantly overlooked, however — battery life. And it’s time for things to change."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:YES (Score 0) 375

by ilsaloving (#49164683) Attached to: Google Wants To Rank Websites Based On Facts Not Links

It's already been demonstrated that when people believe a given thing, they will go out of their way to *continue* believing that thing. Even if you show them an overwhelming amount of evidence that they are wrong, rather than convincing them to change their opinion, they will instead double-down on their existing belief.

Combine that with the fact that there is a ridiculous amount of crap out there, from 'vaccines cause autism' idiots to Fox News, we *need* some kind of filtering to eliminate the nonsense that is put up there with the explicit purpose of misinforming people.

The only concern against something like this, is how easily/likely it would be for governments to subvert for pushing propoganda.

Of course, the end result will probably be that people stop using Google, cause being able to confirm their bias is far more important to people than the search engine they use.

Comment: Re:Follow the money (Score 1) 136

by ilsaloving (#49149285) Attached to: Who's Afraid of Android Fragmentation?

This. It's to the point where a lot of options for iOS arn't even available in android.

Case in point: Scrabble. On iOS there is a free version with a metric crapton of ads, and a $10 paid for version with no ads.

Android? They don't even *offer* the $10 one. Only the version that gives craptons of ads. Not only that, the Android version was fond of crashing and not updating properly when the persons turn was over. I was shocked. As I was using iOS and my spouse was using Android, I was trying to find a word game that existed on both platforms and wasn't crap. Thankfully Wordfeud fit the bill. Available for both platforms, with similar buy options.

Now we're both on iOS because I don't have time to put up with the BS.

Comment: No thanks (Score 1) 76

by ilsaloving (#49080311) Attached to: Sony To Release Google Glass Competitor

The last time I worked on a brand new Sony laptop, it was clear that Sony considered the laptop to be nothing more than a delivery vehicle for it's entertainment products. There was so much Sony crapware on the machine that, out of the box, it wasn't even usable until I uninstalled the majority of the junk.

I anticipate that Sony will force you to watch a movie trailer every time you turn it on, and won't let you use it until you've watched the whole thing.

Comment: "Algorithm"? (Score 1) 142

by ilsaloving (#49079447) Attached to: Breakthrough In Face Recognition Software

Have I missed something?

I've always believed algorithms and neural networks to be essentially opposites to each other.

Algorithms are blocks of code that handles a predefined task. Classic example: quicksort vs bubblesort

Neural networks are a black box of systems that are trained with input until they produce the output you want. Further, even when it is working, you won't truly know what is happening internally, and you're only hope of knowing that it works is throwing a ridiculous amount of inputs at it and seeing how it responds.

Comment: Re: why? (Score 1) 677

by ilsaloving (#49079353) Attached to: Empirical Study On How C Devs Use Goto In Practice Says "Not Harmful"

You've missed my point completely. It's not about how difficult it is to implement. It's about knowing when to implement it.

And I've seen enough hideous code to say that way too many programmers are not skilled enough to realize that they don't know how to make that judgement call, so it is infinitely simpler to simply advise them to not use certain constructs.

Comment: Re: why? (Score 1) 677

by ilsaloving (#49047035) Attached to: Empirical Study On How C Devs Use Goto In Practice Says "Not Harmful"

Are you an anti-vaxxer as well? Because you're using the same logic that they use.

"It's not a problem anymore so we shouldn't have to do this and I resent being told what to do!"

It's not a problem anymore BECAUSE avoiding goto has become conventional wisdom.

If we start telling people that it's ok to use goto again, take a wild guess what will happen? We will go right back to the days of spaghetti code, except it will be that much worse now because software has become overwhelmingly more complex today compared to several decades ago.

The problem with self-described experts is that a lot of people think they're experts when in fact they are not, resulting in a hideous mash that some poor sap down the line has to somehow decipher.

It boils down to risk-reward. If there is a clear and overwhelming reason to use it, then go ahead. If not, then a convention control flow structure will be easier to debug, easier to maintain, and is less likely to cause an inadvertent bug because you jumped out of a code block without cleaning something up.

Comment: Re:Well, yeah (Score 1) 677

by ilsaloving (#49041573) Attached to: Empirical Study On How C Devs Use Goto In Practice Says "Not Harmful"

Just peruse if you need emperical evidence.

That is a neverending wealth of evidence of how badly people code.

But your argument is silly. Of course banning conditional loops is dumb. You're right A determined programmer can make hash out of any programming language. The question becomes a matter of how easy it is for Dunning-Kruger code monkeys to mutilate their code while thinking they are doing things properly.

It's about raising the bar and forcing people to think in a more structured way.

"Banning" goto is like "Banning" jaywalking. Because enough people screw it up badly enough that it is simpler to just warn against it in general.

Comment: Re: why? (Score 0) 677

by ilsaloving (#49040913) Attached to: Empirical Study On How C Devs Use Goto In Practice Says "Not Harmful"

Just because an expert does it, doesn't mean everyone should. An expert developer has a much better structural understanding of how a system works, and is better able to judge whether going against conventional wisdom is beneficial or not, risky or not, etc.

Anyone else doing is is just doing the programming equivalent of the cargo cult.

"Kill the Wabbit, Kill the Wabbit, Kill the Wabbit!" -- Looney Tunes, "What's Opera Doc?" (1957, Chuck Jones)