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Comment Wait a min. - IBM wanted Government to dogfood OO? (Score 1) 331

IBM has been spending millions of dollars lobbying for governments to mandate the use of Open Office, and yet they couldn't internally dogfood their own products? Sorry, but that's just too funny.

Maybe they thought those government types were going to turn in good bug reports so they wouldn't have to!

Comment Re:Unlike IE, you can actually stop using Safari.. (Score 1) 578

As an Apple guy, I can tell you this is completely wrong. WebKit (the engine powering Safari) is a shared framework. it can be found here: /System/Library/Frameworks/WebKit.framework. This framework is key to the "help" Display system and Dictionary. In fact, the new safari 4 engine replaces the webkit framework.

You can check out more information at

I don't want anyone to strip out the underlying code on either system - having someone else do all the work for building a Help system is a relief.

Comment Re:I'm kinda in the vet biz (Score 1) 655

My wife is a Veterinarian, and her practice has gone digital for all radiology. But the office and all radiology is PC only whereas our house is Mac (with some Linux server stuff - not important here).

I'd love to know what vendors are considering mac products for anything in the vet field. Ideally, my wife would love to be able to look at film on the mac, or even better on her iPhone.

Plums is now on the iPhone, as are a few other apps, looking at film would be the bees knees.

Comment Re:Know what you want from a degree (Score 1) 918

There are some good points there, but I'll offer another possibility; maybe the "end" college provides is more significant than just the goal portion.

I hire people, and generally I treat a college degree as a prerequisite. Not because of specific coursework, but because the fact someone has completed a degree demonstrates an ability to keep on task for an extended period of time regardless of distractions. I don't mind major switchers, and I'm not looking for someone who did it in three years to the exclusion of life. Rather, I want to see that someone figured out how to navigate the always Byzantine requirements to get the right class into your schedule in the right order within a time limit.

Additionally, the social skills from college become pretty important - it's pretty hard to make it out of college without some kind of lab class that involves working with classmates on a group project. And everyone had someone in that project who didn't do what everyone wanted, or at least didn't pull their fair share. I want to know how you dealt with that, how did you feel about it, and what did you learn from it.

Finally, and MOST critically, I am always on the lookout for people who can write well on deadline. regardless of the technical nature of the project, the ability to explain what you are doing and why is just essential.

So yes, it's great if you can see your path in college as stepping stones to specific knowledge, but you shouldn't ignore the ancillary benefits that employers count on.

Comment Re:Three strikes plan? (Score 1) 81

I shall repeat:

Musicians DO choose the method of music distribution that best suits their needs! they CHOOSE to sign a contract with a studio rather than using the self publishing route. Musicians have the same inalienable rights as the rest of us, they are fully emancipated.

That some of them choose to go through a studio that has draconian DRM policies is their choice! If you feel strongly about it, then the choice of studio that the musician makes should help you decide if you want to listen to his/her music.

Nothing will work faster at changing polices like lack of money to studio artists.

Comment Re:Three strikes plan? (Score 2, Insightful) 81

Since when did produced, professional music become such a life necessity that you get to dictate the cost structure and business model?

If you don't like how they distribute music, Don't BUY IT!

Why is that so damn hard to understand? The value of the music is the nexus of what the artist/studio is willing to sell it for, and what you are willing to pay for it. The "21st Century Definition of a Musician" clearly includes the ability of a musician to refuse to sign a contract with a big studio. Why do you somehow think the artist is being repressed? The artists have heard of the internet too, yet somehow, they keep doing deals with studios! I wonder if somehow, they think studios do things that they will have to spend a lot of time and money to do, like front money for big venues, pay for plane tickets, studio time, etc etc.

I am so sick and tired of the bastille storming attitude regarding music. I've decided to buy the (little) I want, and ignore the rest.

To shake your little fist in the air at the music "man" is just sad and pathetic.

Comment Moody and Allison need to re-read history on GPLv3 (Score 1) 408

I'm bothered that FSF has pulled down the discussion and dialog that led to the GPLv3, but if anyone can find it, you will see that under v2 you could structure a patent licensing deal in a way that did not cover downstream users of the code. The clear and obvious example was the Novell deal. v3 was altered to prevent patent deals like the Novell deal (and you'll note that Linux still seems to stick with v2).

So for Jeremy to argue that deals can't be done under v2 flies in the face of Eben Moglen's reading of the law. And while Jeremy's a better coder, Moglen's a better lawyer.

This is pure bunk. Ignore and move on.


Submission + - Micosoft Sues TomTom for Patent Infringement

morganew writes: "Microsoft has filed suit against GPS handheld manufacturer TomTom for infringing on 8 separate patents; 5 related to nav, and 3 related to file systems. While Microsoft is the usual black hat on slashdot, it appears that this might be blackhat on blackhat violence. TomTom were found to be a gpl violator in '04, sued Garmin in '07 and Toyota in '08 for infringing TomTom patents, and have a very restrictive EULA. So who's wearing the white hat here?"

Major Cache of Fossils Unearthed In Los Angeles 215

aedmunde sends along news from the LA Times: "A nearly intact mammoth, dubbed Zed, is among the remarkable discoveries near the La Brea Tar Pits. It's the largest known deposit of Pleistocene ice age fossils... in what might seem to be the unlikeliest of places — under an old May Co. parking lot in L.A.'s tony Miracle Mile shopping district. ...huge chunks of soil from the site have been removed intact and now sit in large wooden crates on the back lot... The 23 crates range... from the size of a desk to that of a small delivery truck... There were, in fact, 16 separate deposits on the site, an amount that, by her estimate, would have taken 20 years to excavate conventionally. ... Carefully identifying the edges of each deposit, her team dug trenches around them and underneath, isolating the deposits on dirt pedestals. After wrapping heavy plastic around the deposits, workers built wooden crates similar to tree boxes and lifted them out individually with a heavy crane. The biggest one weighed 123,000 pounds."
Software Kicks Out All TWiki Contributors 194

David Gerard noted an interesting story going down with a relatively minor project that has interesting implications for any Open Source project. He writes "Ten years ago, Peter Thoeny started the TWiki wiki engine. It attracted many contributors at About a year ago, Thoeny founded the startup On 27th October, locked all the other contributors out of in an event Thoeny called 'the relaunch.' Here's the IRC meeting log. All the other core developers have now moved to a new project, NextWiki. Is it a sensible move for a venture capital firm that depends on a healthy Open Source community to lock it out?"

Comment Re:Mod parent down (Score 1) 517

Actually, it's not cruel. Although his language is abusive, his intention has some merit.

Studies by the National Science Foundation and others have shown that a disproportionate number of the really questionable patents have had the same examiners.

POPA, the Union that represents examiners, and the executives at the USPTO need to feel more pressure when it comes to correcting the mistakes of individual examiners or their managers.

RIght now, the system skews towards rewarding the examiner who approves a patent, rather than an examiner how gives final judgment against approval.

Anecdotally, it appears that some examiners are even more ready to approve patents than the rest of their colleagues, and public pressure to 'call them out' might be a useful tool for both the Union and Administration to find a resolution to a few bad, or at least misguided, apples.

It's worth noting that IBM is the largest patenter for the USPTO, and as such has incredible influence there. For all their Open Source marketing speak, they continue to pursue absurd patents and to collect royalties off of software patents.

For IBM to file for a patent like this demonstrates that either they are monumentally duplicitous in their intent with regards to method/software patents, or that they are a company where the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing.


Submission + - IBM tried patenting bathroom use, USPTO decries

morganew writes: " Ars Technica reports USPTO Chief Jon Dudas singled out an attempted IBM bathroom patent as a sign of current submissions from industry. Dudas, speaking before the Tech Policy Summit, said the USPTO is getting overworked by companies like IBM submitting unworthy applications. But the larger question raised here may be: Should IBM be patenting software at all? IBM makes billions licensing patents, including software patents, yet supports anti-software patent voices like the FSF. WIll the "Real" IBM please stand up?"

Evolving ODF Environment: Spotlight on SoftMaker 75

Andy Updegrove writes "In this fourth in-depth interview focusing on ODF-compliant office productivity suites, I interview Dr. Martin Sommer, of Germany's SoftMaker Software. Most people know about OpenOffice, StarOffice, and KOffice, the ODF poster child software suites. But there are also other products available as well, including this one, which bundles word processing and spreadsheet capabilities (with more modules on the way), runs on both Windows, Linux and mobile platforms, is designed for home users, is available on-line, is localized in many languages - and is dirt cheap, besides. It's also been selected by AMD for use in connection with its ambitious "50x15" plan, which hopes to connect 50% of the world population to the Internet by 2015. This interview series amply demonstrates how a useful standard - in this case ODF - can rapidly lead to the evolution of a rich and growing environment of compliant products, providing customers with variety, choice, price competition, and proprietary as well as open source product alternatives - in stark contrast to the situation that has prevailed in office suite software for the last many years."

Real computer scientists like having a computer on their desk, else how could they read their mail?