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Comment: Re:Health Care NOT Health Insurance (Score 1) 2416

by miro2 (#40481107) Attached to: Supreme Court: Affordable Care Act Is Constitutional

But this opens the door to the insurance industry becoming more heavily regulated by the government, perhaps even eventually becoming a quasi-state industry. So in the end, this could lead to something very much like having the government be the insurance industry. Its already happening: even if insurance industries want to deny coverage to those with preexisting conditions (because its a good business decision), they wont be able to because of the law. The government is denying the ability of the business to make decisions which are in the best interest of the business, because those decisions would be bad for the country. This is a good thing.

Comment: Re:Uh... (Score 1) 202

by miro2 (#37724098) Attached to: OccupySF IT Admins Using Pedal Power For Protest

But the one common theme is that they want to take money away from people who have a lot of it. And not pay their student loans.

No, that's the one of the three simple tropes used by unthinking people to criticize the protests. The three are:

1) that these are just dirty bored privileged kids interested in sex, drugs, and partying

2) that the protestors have no demands at all, and therefore have nothing important to say

3) that they are just jealous of those with money and want to steal from them

If you take the time to actually investigate what is going on, you will see that none of these are true as a whole (even if FoxNews can find an idiot protestor that seems to prove otherwise). Think about it: if your generalization were true, you would not see thousands of people protesting in hundreds of cities across the nation. It may be hard for you to believe, but most people dont want to steal from you. They dont want want to steal from the rich any more than flat tax people want to steal from the poor.

The protestors are not upset that some people are richer than they are. They are upset because there is something deeply wrong with this country. Our nation is moving more and more towards a third-world system in which it is getting harder and harder for the have-nots to better their position. Wealth is becoming concentrated in the hands of just a few, not because they are the hardest workers (news flash: they are not), but because the system was bent in their favor from the beginning. And the political system is becoming an insular closed-loop in which politicians are unwilling to make any kind of significant change that would push us out of this mess, lest they reduce the flow of money to their campaigns.

The protestors dont want your money. They want a fair system, in which hard-working people can support themselves and raise a family with relative ease. They want a system that encourages a strong middle class, so that we dont have a situation in which the top few percent pay most of the taxes and politicians wont listen to the rest. They dont want to freeload -- they want the American dream. We can have that country again. But its going to require people paying attention to big dreamers, who make a lot of irritating noise about changing the status quo.

Comment: Re:Irresponsible (Score 4, Insightful) 187

by miro2 (#36845432) Attached to: Anonymous Releases Restricted NATO Document

If you have a better parallel for an "organization" without a strict hierarchy, one that is an organization mostly by name rather than concerted, centrally planned action, I'll gladly replace it for that one.

How about sports team fans? I hear Yankees fans gather in message boards, declare a unifying ideology, and even have a logo/banner that they identify themselves with, even in public. There are several official clubs, and spokesmen often issue their rants and decrees on a network of blogs and twitter accounts. They are like a multi-headed hydra. You can try to stop some of their leaders, but other Yankees fans will just pop up to take their place!!!

Comment: Re:Wonderful! (Score 2) 325

by miro2 (#36240322) Attached to: Upscaling Retro 8-Bit Pixel Art To Vector Graphics

I actually did RTFP and you are not quite as right as you blithely assert. The parent poster was correct.

This has nothing to do with that, but is about giving a nicer representation to information that is there.

Actually, the algorithm makes heuristic decisions which add information based on an understanding of the human visual system and assumptions about the problem space (it works well on hand-drawn cartoons, but not on down-sampled photos). For instance, they have heuristics for deciding which neighboring pixel fields should be attached to a pixel "island" by one of its four corners. In the original image, its completely ambiguous. In their enhanced version, its explicit. They are adding information based on background semantic knowledge.

Sorry, but that's just plain not going to work.

Actually, its not as impossible as you state. A low-res image of a face has two sets of information: the pixels themselves, and all of the constraints imposed by the fact that the image is of a face. There might be an infinite set of objects which could have generated a given pixel field, but there is a smaller infinity of faces that could generate said pixel field. So an image enhancer which understood it was looking at a face might be able to fill in some of the details. If it can deduce information about the lighting in the room, it might do even better. Such an image enhancer would be using semantic knowledge to add detail to the initial visual information....(drum beat)...just like your brain does! Computers might theoretically be able to do it better. So its just not as bone-head simple as you make it out to be.

Comment: Re:nope, wrong logic on what morality is (Score 1) 669

by miro2 (#34704718) Attached to: Wikileaks and Democracy In Zimbabwe

Do we blame the reporter for telling the mafia where the witness under protection is? Absolutely.

Wikileaks exposed information actively damaging those fighting for reform in Zimbabwe. Only a blind, idiot apologist would try and excuse those actions. Just say it: Wikileaks fucked up. You can do it.

Your analogy is indeed good. But it actually serves to undermine your point. The people who released the documents to the public are...(get ready)... the journalists and reporters! Wikileaks supplied a few select organizations with the cables, then reprinted them after the New York Times and others published them widely. So it appears that the "blind idiot apologist" here is you. Why is your anger directed at Wikileaks, and not the people who did the real "harm" of releasing this information to the public? Could it be that you are just buying into the propaganda and FUD that has been relentlessly spread by the government and others since this incident took place?

Cellphones

PlayStation App Coming To iOS, Android 47

Posted by Soulskill
from the psphone-looking-more-likely-all-the-time dept.
Sony has announced plans to launch PlayStation-centric apps for iOS 4 and Android devices. While the apps doesn't actually let users play games, it allows them to interact with various PlayStation Network functions. "This includes allowing players to view various trophies they and their friends have won in order to validate their self-worth. Players will also be able to view friends' online status and browse games for the PS3, PS2, and PSP with the app, as well as catch up on news and any relevant hardware announcements. If they see anything they like, the app will integrate with Facebook, Twitter, and e-mail to make for easy sharing." The app will be released for several European countries to start, with more versions and languages to follow.

Comment: WikiLeaks-Style?! (Score 4, Insightful) 185

by miro2 (#34545670) Attached to: Sheriff's Online Database Leaks Info On Informants

Their concern: That someone may have copied it and could post it, WikiLeaks-style, on the Internet.

Let's hope they post it WikiLeaks-style. That would mean they spend months coordinating with journalists to redact names and other information that might put individuals' lives at risk. Then, they would only release a few select important parts of the material in a completely responsible manner.

Of course, that is not what the editors and poster were trying to convey by 'WikiLeaks' style. Why insert this useless anti-free-speech FUD into the story?

Comment: Re:Stop using the word 'Attack' (Score 2) 703

by miro2 (#34504312) Attached to: WikiLeaks Defenders Threaten Amazon

Actually, that's the first intelligent response I have seen to the DDOS=sit-in analogy. You have a very good point. In some ways this is much closer to a sit-in in which participants actually handcuff themselves to objects in the business. Its still not an attack.

Analogies between the real and virtual world are bound to be flawed. But calling it a hacker attack is extremely misleading to a public that imagines the attackers are breaking in to computers and damaging them or stealing data. Despite the analogy's flaws "sit-in" is much more accurate than "attack."

Comment: Re:Stop using the word 'Attack' (Score 1) 703

by miro2 (#34503504) Attached to: WikiLeaks Defenders Threaten Amazon

Your argument is based on an incorrect analogy. No property is being damaged here. Space (bandwidth space) is being taken up by protesters in order to prevent other legitimate activity. This is how protests have functioned for decades. Perhaps you believe that people in the civil-rights movement should have taken less aggressive tactics so that we wouldn't have had to end segregation so quickly, eh?

Comment: Re:DIY hacking tools (Score 2) 703

by miro2 (#34502986) Attached to: WikiLeaks Defenders Threaten Amazon

Yes, its not 'hacking' and these are not 'attacks' and there is no 'war.' Those are loaded terms, and they are being used in order to make it seem like this is not an ethical politically-motivated action. Participants are not stealing or damaging property. They are simply taking up bandwidth. This is firmly in the tradition of passive resistance, in which protesters enter a business or property and simply take up space to prevent business from occurring (i.e., lunch counter sit-ins). The terms we should be using are 'protest' or 'online sit-in' and the hackers should be called 'protesters.'

Slashdot editors: please stop calling these 'attacks.'

Comment: Stop using the word 'Attack' (Score 4, Insightful) 703

by miro2 (#34502808) Attached to: WikiLeaks Defenders Threaten Amazon

These are not attacks. This is not a war. A politically motivated DDOS is exactly analogous in form and function to a lunch counter sit-in. These should be called 'protests' or 'online sit-ins.' Use of the words like 'war' and 'attack' only fuels a belief that there is no justified ethical motivation for these protests.

Comment: Re:Ummm, because it is different information? (Score 5, Informative) 464

by miro2 (#34494784) Attached to: Pentagon Papers Ellsberg Supports Wikileaks

I haven't seen anything that I've said "Yes, the public needed to know this, it is important and shouldn't have been secret."

Its probably because you are self-filtering information that contradicts your own opinion. There are in fact many examples of information in these documents that the American public has a right to know. Here is a clear cut example:

The United States has been knowingly lying to the American public about its participation in military strikes in Yemen. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley in answered "No" to the question "Is the U.S. involved in any military operations in Yemen?" But the documents reveal the answer was a lie. Crowly was not misinformed. He was lying. Dont you believe that US citizens have a right to know when killing is being done in their name?

A good article with several links, and fascinating audio: http://www.salon.com/news/wikileaks/index.html?story=/opinion/greenwald/2010/12/08/wikileaks/

 

Reality must take precedence over public relations, for Mother Nature cannot be fooled. -- R.P. Feynman

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