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Comment: Re:There are no new legal issues (Score 1) 206

by j-beda (#47875541) Attached to: Should Cyborgs Have the Same Privacy Rights As Humans?

once they get a warrant for the password,

One cannot 'get a warrant for the password', at least in civilized countries :)

OK, perhaps not a "warrant" but surely the US has some sort of "production order" where the court says "give us the records you have" ? Perhaps they don't, or maybe that is only in civil cases during discovery.

Logging capabilities may be ubiquitous, but logs that would be useful in a criminal case, much less so. In any case, nothing currently on the market poses this "privacy danger".

I reiterate, the present framework is sufficient in my mind.

Comment: Re:There are no new legal issues (Score 1) 206

by j-beda (#47875013) Attached to: Should Cyborgs Have the Same Privacy Rights As Humans?

Ok, lets take a slightly different approach.

Would you submit to the government mandating that you wear a camera and other monitoring equipment or have it implanted, provided that they need a warrant to read its contents?

Can you think of ANY negative implications of that? What are they? (Assume for the sake of the argument that the implantation process itself is simple, painless, and complication free.)

What's the difference between that and a disabled person requiring a prosthetic to be made whole?

The solution, by the way, is simple enough. Mandate that the prosthetics encrypt the monitoring data, and require a password from the owner to decrypt. That effectively shields the cyborg.

The problem is the consumer isn't in a position to demand this feature. And the vendor is unlikely to feel competitive pressures to provide it. So it won't come about unless we mandate it.

Sure, that is an extreme position. Nobody is mandating such a thing, and there is nothing currently even available that could work in this manner, and there is no reason I can see to expect that any prosthetics would ever require such position logging.

In short I don't see the need for new legislation absent something that actually exists that might be a problem. Mandating everyone wear tracking devices is something we can fight when it seems likely to be introduced. Having a medical need for something doesn't feel at all like governmental mandating in my mind, and unless significant number of people end up with such medical devices, I see no need to address the hypothetical shortcomings that the current warrant framework has in place.

I am not convinced that mandating an encryption password for such a hypothetical device would give any real protection beyond that offered by the warrant system - once they get a warrant for the password, it seems like you are screwed anyway. If the logs are so vital to the operation of the device, there are going to be ways of getting at them that do not depend on a security system that the user can forget or misplace, and if they are not vital to the operation, then the security minded will remove or turn off that feature or the maker would not put it in in the first place.

Comment: Re:There are no new legal issues (Score 1) 206

by j-beda (#47870377) Attached to: Should Cyborgs Have the Same Privacy Rights As Humans?

Yep. I wouldn't be happy, but then again I wouldn't be happy if they searched my home and found the bodies, but I would submit.

The 5th amendment is about government over-reach. If you assume the government is only looking for dead-bodies, and the only people hiding them are criminals then its easy to get swept up behind the idea that anything the government can get a warrant for is fair game. Only criminals will be punished.

But there should be some limits. Even if that means some times some criminals don't get caught, because the alternative leads to a grossly oppressive state.

There are limits. Those are defined by the constitution, and include the warrant system as further defined by the courts. Yes, some of these technologies give interesting edge cases, but I don't think any of them require fundamental changes to the legal framework.

As you stated, the reason the limitations on police powers of investigation are there is to prevent overreaching and false convictions. Retrieving physical evidence after a properly executed warrant doesn't seem like an issue to me, and I have absolutely no fear that anyone is going to be able to read people's minds in anything like the lifetime of my great-grandchildren.

"We found DNA... no full match in the system, but we know he's related to this guy who was arrested once for shoplifting -- he wasn't the guy, but they took his dna and now its in the system... but I digress... they share a grandparent... so its his cousin. We checked birth records ... he has 2, one lives in this city... so we're picking him up now..."

That's effectively being in a DNA database for not being particularly closely related to a guy who didn't do anything wrong.

You are choosing poor examples. The various constitutional amendments are designed to prevent abuses that harm people, except in the type of harm that is defined as putting the guilty in jail. We don't compel self-incrimination because it leads to abuses that harm many innocent people, and is not particularly effective at catching the guilty. If you want to argue against you are going to have to show that your hypothetical database and the described police procedure has much greater societal harm than this one.

A better reason for limiting these types of databases is the problem of false positives. If you database is large enough, even with 99.99 percent accuracy (a failure rate of 0.01%) we would have lots of innocent people being flagged in these types of searches. This type of thing already happens for fingerprint analysis, and while genetic comparisons should in principle allow us to confidently pick out any individual in the world (except for clones I suppose), in practice DNA evidence is only comparing a very tiny part of the DNA, and errors in application which can never all be eliminated, so it will never be perfectly accurate.

Compelling people to tell your their password in my mind is a problem - there are lots of ways that an innocent person could be harmed by that. Compelling people to give up their implanted devices with a proper warrant is not as big of a problem in my mind. If warrants are being issued for individuals without good "probable cause", that is a problem. If extracting the evidence is onerous or dangerous or painful, then there should be a higher barrier to getting the warrant. If there are increased expectations of privacy for example lawyers or times spent at home, then perhaps there need to be guidelines on how the implant data is analyzed, but all of these types of issues are currently considered under the existing frameworks.

My thesis is that cyborgs do have the same right to privacy as anyone else, and that no new laws need be drafted specifically for people with implants. To motivate any such laws, I think we need to demonstrate that the current practice has negative consequences to society or innocent individuals. Making it easier to catch criminals is not, by itself, a reason to reject a new practice.


Comment: Re:So what exactly is the market here. (Score 1) 730

by j-beda (#47867811) Attached to: Apple Announces Smartwatch, Bigger iPhones, Mobile Payments

Because it doesn't necessarily still work. I have an iphone that is nearly 3 years old and the home button is very nearly worn out, frequently only working intermittently.

One of my clients has an iPhone with a flaky button. He had an Apple Store person turn on a software button called "Assistive Touch" which is part of the standard iOS software. It might be useful in your situation too. Here are some instructions:

Comment: Re:There are no new legal issues (Score 1) 206

by j-beda (#47851715) Attached to: Should Cyborgs Have the Same Privacy Rights As Humans?

I will admit little sympathy for cases where true evidence of guilt is obtained through proper search warrants - that's how it should work.

Then come the day when we can stick a needle in your brain and dump your memories out as video, you would submit to that, as long as they had a warrant?

Yep. I wouldn't be happy, but then again I wouldn't be happy if they searched my home and found the bodies, but I would submit.

Comment: Re:Easy viewpoint (Score 1) 206

by j-beda (#47844625) Attached to: Should Cyborgs Have the Same Privacy Rights As Humans?

Once something is part of your body, as opposed to something you can drop or take off without surgery, it is no longer a separate object and is immediately part of you, only being subject to the same laws that someone that has no cybernetics is subject to.

So no, the police could not download the data from your cybernetic memory anymore than they could from your biological memory.

There, see, easy solution just by recognizing one simple idea, your body is your own, no matter where it came from. That also applies to someone with transplanted organs or other parts from someone else, as they are nut subject to any benefits or penalties that the previous owner of that tissue once had. So you can't inherit from your heart donors rich aunt, you can't be thrown in jail for the robbery and murder committed by your face donor (yes, they've done a couple of those now), or the like.

With a warrant, you can be compelled to give blood and tissue samples, and with a warrant they can search your phone or your camera, so I don't see why it should be any different with implanted devices - either treat them like non-implanted devices (get a warrant) or like parts of your body (get a warrant). When they get to the point of reading minds and playing back memories (I say at least a hundred years), then maybe we will have some difficult issues.

Comment: Re:This is no different. (Score 1) 206

by j-beda (#47844621) Attached to: Should Cyborgs Have the Same Privacy Rights As Humans?

Are you suggesting that said *pacemaker* is storing location information without any method to nondestructively access it? If so, I call bullshit. If not, the cops need only use the same interface to extract the information without killing you.

I am not talking about the technical ability to extract data from the fictional future device, I am talking about the legality. My point is that if some future medically necessary device did for some reason store historical location information, that such data should be covered by the same laws that protect a person from self-incrimination. If I don't have tell tell the cops where I was last Thursday, a medically necessary device that I can't live without and which I can't control the data collected on, should also not be available to the cops to extract the data about where I was last Thursday.

Why not? The non-incrimination stuff is just so that we don't give incentives to the police to beat the snot out of you to get a forced confession from an innocent person, it is not because we think there is something "unfair" about it. Boo hoo if your medical device recorded you killing the little old lady down the street and it turned you in. Now, if there was some significant chance of the medical device giving false testimony, we might need to do something different, but there is no reason on the face of it to treat implanted medical devices or any other piece of potential evidence different depending on whether or not it is required or life-saving or not.

If fear of incrimination ended up being a deterrent to behaviour that we as a society think is important, we might carve out some legal exclusions like we do for doctors, lawyers, and priests, so maybe in the future your lawyer-bot or shrink-bot might not be subject to a warrant, but I doubt anyone would care about the pace-maker. It seems so much more likely to prove your innocence than guilt.

Then again, with so many laws against things that "everyone" does in terms of drugs, music piracy, jaywalking, etc. maybe you could get widespread support to making your implanted recorders protected information.

Comment: Re:There are no new legal issues (Score 1) 206

by j-beda (#47844597) Attached to: Should Cyborgs Have the Same Privacy Rights As Humans?

An implanted cell phone is no different, legally, than any other cell phone.

Here's a far better example:

Suppose your eyes were destroyed, and you had cybernetic eyes implanted. Suppose those eyes logged various operational diagnostic information for the last couple weeks on internal memory, information that can be used to determine things like when you were asleep, when you were awake, when you were indoors vs outside in sunlight, etc.

Should the police be able to get a warrant for that information?

If so, then a blind person with cybernetic eyes has a reduced right to privacy over regular humans. His eyes can essentially testify and provide evidence against him on demand, mine can't, no matter how many warrants the police obtain.

It raises a very interesting question, really.

That isn't a reduced right of privacy, the RIGHT is identical - information is subject to a properly obtained warrant. People's situations are certainly different, so the consequences of being a suspect are different for people who are subject to being recorded by various devices, both internally or externally. If you wear your Google Glasses or carry a GPS tracker (ie. cell phone) or have medical devices that record logs of some sort, those devices could serve to incriminate or exculpate (great word, eh?) you whereas someone without those types of devices would obviously not be incriminated or exculpated by them. I guess it would suck to be a eye-implant thief, but on the average, I would imagine that since the vast majority of people, in the vast majority of cases, are innocent of the crimes they are suspects of, such implants would tend to provide proof of innocence more often than mistaken evidence of guilt. I will admit little sympathy for cases where true evidence of guilt is obtained through proper search warrants - that's how it should work.

it is the same right to privacy that anyone has who uses a device that records that type of information.

Comment: Re:There are no new legal issues (Score 1) 206

by j-beda (#47844571) Attached to: Should Cyborgs Have the Same Privacy Rights As Humans?

The same arguments were (and should have been, to get the issues resolved) made about forced blood tests for DUIs, for forced collection of DNA evidence, for forced collection of fingerprints.

In all cases, when a minimum standard of probably cause is met, warrants will be issued and forced collection allowed.

Feel free to explain how this is any different.

Either it's a device, and subject to the same rules as a cell phone, or it's part of the person, and subject to the same rules as biometric evidence. There is no other option. The former has recently been settled by the Supreme Court, in favor of privacy and the fourth amendment. The latter was settled decades ago, same way.

If there's probably cause, a warrant will be issued. If there's not, there's not.

There is nothing new here.

Good points.

Comment: Re:Bass Ackward (Score 1) 354

by j-beda (#47844497) Attached to: DMCA Claim Over GPL Non-Compliance Shuts Off Minecraft Plug-Ins

If they have been distributing the "proprietary code being illegally included" and they are the owners of the "proprietary code being illegally included", then it would seem as though it is no longer "proprietary code being illegally included" but now is "(L)GPLed code being distributed by the copyright holder". Thus anyone who forks the project after the point the company acquired to derivative should have a complete, clean GPL version to work with as everyone with any claim to any part of the code has explicitly distributed it with a GPL license attached.

Comment: Re:ELI5 please (Score 1) 354

by j-beda (#47844445) Attached to: DMCA Claim Over GPL Non-Compliance Shuts Off Minecraft Plug-Ins

>They *stole* Mojang's MC code, in essence, by decompiling it and distributing it. Mojang was nice enough not to take them to court over it - but that doesn't mean the code is suddenly GPL.

You missed one of the twists: according to Mojang, Bukkit is Mojang's project. The "They" in your sentence is Mojang too. Mojang has been releasing versions of Bukkit under the GPL containing the decompiled Minecraft server code.

If they (Mojang) have been releasing versions of Bukkit under the GPL containing the decompiled Minecraft server code, then doesn't that mean that the decompiled Minecraft server code has been released under the GPL?

Mojang has stated that they wish to continue the Bukkit project, which requires one of two things to happen: They rewrite all of the GPL code in Bukkit, or they release the Minecraft server under the GPL to make Bukkit valid.

Or the third option, they release the decompiled Minecraft server code used in Bukkit under the GPL. Since you just said that they have been releasing versions of Bukkit under the GPL, isn't that what they are doing?

If Mojang has been releasing versions of Bukkit under the GPL, what part of Bukkit is not in compliance with the GPL? Do the latest releases have text that says "This is GPL code, except for lines xxx through yyy which were decompiled from Minecraft server code and are not GPLed" or is the tarball accompanied by the standard GPL license text? If the latter, then all the code in the tarball is GPLed - if we trust that Mojang has not added any non-GPLed software that they themselves do not own. The software that they do have copyright claims on, they have released to the GPL by the act of including it in the tarball with a GPL sticker on the outside.

None of this requires them to release the original non-decompiled-recompiled Minecraft server code, as long as the source code being distributed is the stuff used to make any binaries they are distributing, the GPL terms are being met.

If they want to continue to release Bukkitt under a non-GPL license, then yes, they would need to rewrite the GPL portions that they do not own or that they cannot acquire from the copyright holders.

Comment: Re:Short version (Score 1) 354

by j-beda (#47844357) Attached to: DMCA Claim Over GPL Non-Compliance Shuts Off Minecraft Plug-Ins

Wolfe was one of the contributors to the Bukkit project. He contributed his code under the GPL license. It turns out that the Bukkit project does not meet the GPL license because it contains decompiled Minecraft server code, therefore Wolfe has claimed that his code being distributed with Bukkit is a violation of his copyright and had the project taken down. I can't see how his claim would be false.

If Mojang has distributed a bunch of source code (the latest Bukkit project version) with a GPL license on it, I don't see what it matters if some of that source code might have originally been the result of a decompile of the Minecraft server code. Yes, that decompile might have been against the license of the code (copyrighted by Mojang) in the past, but if Mojang is now distributing the project themselves, they certainly have a right to release source code that is a derivative of their copyrighted work. And the GPL certainly does not require that one release earlier versions of the source code, so the original Minecraft server code need not be released under the GPL. In this case it does not seem as though Wolfe has much to complain about - with Mojang distributing all of the Bukkit project under the GPL, anyone should be able to take that code and fork it and do with it whatever one might do with GPL software. I will admit that this does seem unlikely - unless the decompiled portion of the Minecraft server code inside the Bukkit project was a minor fraction of the entire Minecraft server code, I doubt Mojang would distribute even a derivative version under the GPL.

Alternatively, if Mojang has not distributed this Bukkit project under a GPL license, then it would seem that anyone else trying to distribute it would be in violation of the GPL, since it sounds like at least part of the Bukkit project (the decompiled/recompiled Minecraft server code) is not GPL. Thus Wolfe has every right to object to the distribution of his GPL code inside the Bukkit project.

Comment: Re:Never let the truth (Score 1) 391

by j-beda (#47667697) Attached to: Is "Scorpion" Really a Genius?

I wait for a run of 6 (or more) red or black. I walk up, place a bet (say $20) on the opposite color. Most of the time, I win right away. If I lose, I will double down (double my prior bet on the same color, so $40, $80, $160), but no more than three more times. Outside the first time I did this (and chased a $20 with over $600, realized what I did and set my rule!) I've never had to go past three (so 4 bets total)

And that's it. Statically speaking I always have the same slightly less than 50/50 chance of winning (thanks to 0/00 it's not even odds although it pays that way), the prior spins really don't make any difference. Except, when I play this way, I win.Like I said, statistically it shouldn't work. Call it luck I guess.

The downside is you need a busy casino (with busy tables, which is getting harder and harder to find even in Vegas these days) that allows cash or casino chips on outside bets (bets along the outside of the table for color, odd/even, etc) at their roulette tables vs making you buy table chips, which for roulette are specific to the table. You will not get rich playing this way, it's too slow and higher bets risk running into table limits if you start doubling down, but it's an easy way to pay for dinner.

Thanks for explaining - that was the type of thing I thought you were getting at.

Well, I suspect that if you keep good records, you'll soon find that you aren't winning as much as you think you are, but hey, small risk and a bit of enjoyment when you do (as you often will) take home the extra $20. Keeping accurate records will do either of two things - show you are actually winning against the odds, or demonstrated that you in fact are not. But if you are already happy with your understanding of the situation why bother? Obviously any losses that you might actually be taking clearly are not so great that they negatively impact your financial situation, so finding out about them is probably only going to decrease your happiness anyway.

On four spins, the odds of loosing each time are one out of sixteen, and if you do run the whole four bets and lose you are out $20 + $40 + $80 + $160 = $300 (or twice that if you started at $40). If you have really won $3200 net while using this stopping at four loosing bets in a row you really do seem to be leading a charmed life.

I wonder if any casino published lists of roulette results so one could check to see if in fact the colour that comes up after a long run of one colour is still 50/50 or not (OK, 50/52 with the green guys included). Here is a million spins:

Anyhow, I'm not going to analyze it.

Wikipedia talks about this type of progressive system:

Comment: Re:Never let the truth (Score 1) 391

by j-beda (#47664925) Attached to: Is "Scorpion" Really a Genius?

You know you are off by a factor of 10, right? We're talking about 80-160 trips to the tables, not 800-1600. As for my bets, min. run of 6, not 4, and max chase bets of 3. I never said I never lost a bet, I said I never walked away from a table a loser.

Now if you really want to have fun, actually model it with those parameters and see how it turns out over 160 rounds.

Oh my goodness - you would think I could divide by 10 correctly, eh? I guess not.

So if we model 80 extra wins over losses, if that is within 4 standard deviations of the expected value of zero extra wins, that make the standard deviation around 20, and the variance 400 and the number of total bets around 1600, which at least is starting to be more reasonable. A (very) few people (one out of about 16,000) who make 1600 bets will win 80 times more than they lose.

So, what exactly is your activity? Explain it to me like I am stupid, cause I probably am, and I don't know what a chase bet is or anything like that. Are you waiting for a run of one colour and then betting $40, or is it more complicated than that?

Comment: Re:Never let the truth (Score 2) 391

by j-beda (#47662061) Attached to: Is "Scorpion" Really a Genius?

I suppose you think if you hit four blacks in a row on roulette you should always go red because it's red's turn to come up?

Although statistically it's totally irrelevant what the prior spins are, betting like this is how I pay for my expenses whenever I visit Vegas. Sure, I don't make a fortune doing it (usually just 20 here, 40 there), but I've never walked away from a roulette table a loser.

Then you haven't played enough roulette, or actually kept accurate records.

I would remember losing. Now, we're only talking about around $3,200 over like 4 different trips but still, it payed for my meals, taxis and, well, some of the alcohol. I never stay at the table, I swoop in, red or black, collect, and leave. I've stood around and watched people lose startling amounts of money on those tables.

Let me see if I understand you. Is this the gist of what your practices are? You walk down to the roulette wheel and wait for the ball to hit four blacks in a row, then place $800 on red and walk away a winner with an extra $800 in your pocket. I could certainly believe that has happened to you four times.

If you are making "20 here, 40 there" on a red/black bets, then taking in $3200 would require around 800 to 1600 winning bets on red/black. To simplify the math, I'll say each bet was $40, so we need at least 800 more winning bets than losing bets. If you have actually only made those 800 winning bets, then wow - that's freaky! The odds of that happening are something like 1 in 6.7x10^240 (two to the power of eight hundred). I doubt very much you have NEVER lost a roulette bet, because the odds against that are so incredibly incredibly incredibly incredibly high (I should really add a whole lot more "incredibly" terms).

So what might you actually be doing? Based on your reported winnings and bet size, we need 800 more wins than losses (assuming the numbers reported are accurate). A quick google search turns up a nice discussion about coin flips (link below) that I can use to get some calculations from. If we ignore the house advantage due to the green "0"/"00" slots we can just use a 50/50 probability. The variance of a Bernoulli distribution is: Var(X) = np(1-p) where n is the number of trials/bets, p is the expected probability of outcome 1 and (1 - p) is the expected probability of outcome 2. With p=1/2=0.5 we have Var(X) = n(1/2)(1-1/2) = n/4. The square root of the variance is the standard deviation and about 2/3 of all trials of a given size should fall within one standard deviation of the expected result (Wikipedia link below). If someone got 800 more wins than losses, that would not be too surprising as long as the number of bets they made was large enough so that they were still within a few standard deviations of the expected result of equal numbers of wins and losses. Only 1 out of 400 billion trails fall outside of 7 standard deviations, so 8 standard deviations should be very very very conservative (and makes the division of 800 simple!) So with a standard deviation of 800/8 = 100, this gives a variance of 100^2 =10,000 and the number of bets (n) is around 40,000. A more reasonable estimate of 4 standard deviations (1 out of 16,000 trials fall outside of 4 standard deviations), gives a standard deviation of 200, variance 40,000 and a number of bets of 160,000.

flipping coins calcs:
standard deviation odds:

Basically, in order to have 800 more wins than losses, you need to make a whole lot of bets, unless the odds are significantly different from 50-50.

For me at least, it seems likely that your memory or record keeping is at fault and that in actuality you have not come out $3,200 ahead on bets of $40. Or even more likely, I am misunderstanding what you are claiming. I really am interested in what you are doing, and recognize that any "theoretical" or "statistical" calculation I might make would not invalidate your actual experiences, but I would love to reconcile the math with the actuality.

Numeric stability is probably not all that important when you're guessing.