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Comment: Lay off the Freedom Loving Punch (Score 4, Informative) 504

by mpapet (#46810025) Attached to: Oklahoma Moves To Discourage Solar and Wind Power

The last time I looked, the flip side to a regulated utility was a deregulated utility. Deregulated utilities end up as monopolies.

The other last time I looked, business interests of all kinds turn to governments to maintain their profits, and raise barriers to competition. And spare me the "The problem is bad regulation." That's not the problem.

Comment: Re:Nonsense... Really? (Score 1) 384

by mpapet (#45796177) Attached to: Internet Commenting Growing Away From Anonymity

Anonymity is not what you think it is on the Interwebs, at least in the U.S. Given the amount of data collected by the NSA, if you posting anonymously becomes a person of interest to Federal law enforcement, then your anonymity is gone as it doesn't take much to figure out who you are by your traffic.

Facingbook certainly knows who you are, anonymous comments included, if you use that site.

Comment: Censorship by Another Name (Score 4, Insightful) 384

by mpapet (#45795799) Attached to: Internet Commenting Growing Away From Anonymity

Ok, not really, but what a sensational headline!

Most of the sites using facingbooks and other comment systems ban comments someone, somewhere, in the media property don't like, which turns out to be most of the interesting comments. And then comments just die.

The "Internet is growing up" has many meanings, but the one the most powerful Americans want is one that is a broadcast-only sh!t pipe the broadcaster (Media Monopolists) can endlessly quantize and monetize their viewers. Discouraging comments fits in nicely with those plans!

Comment: I Know Someone Who Bought Them For a Small School! (Score 2) 262

by mpapet (#45053177) Attached to: Microsoft Makes Another "Nearly Sold Out" Claim For the Surface Line

They have a double-digit purchase of the devices and it will be no surprise that the Microsoft people gave them a GREAT deal per unit.

I don't know a whole lot about tablets nor do I care but I test drove one for a while. My nearest experience comparison is with the Android/Play marketplace. If you are an Android user, the interface doesn't have any surprises.

What's hilarious is the almost empty "marketplace." The only thing in it were apps written by the few companies Microsoft hasn't managed to crush or alienate. Of the few apps in the marketplace, imagine single-digit reviews being a heavily reviewed/downloaded application.

The buyer was promised special "support" because so many (double digits!!!!) were bought, but that was an epic waste of the buyer's time. Eventually someone determined to use the thing found someone at Microsoft that knew something about the devices. It wasn't in support, that's for sure. There are apparently a large number of undocumented features essentially paving the way for an "enterprise tablet" inside the Microsoft ActiveDirectory/groupware-whatever jail.

I've got a negative bias because I don't "get" tablets. Me, personally, it's not even close to the Android ecosystem and the blinky tiles do nothing for me. Judging by how many tiny promises were broken and time wasted for the buyer and almost empty marketplace the device is doomed. Microsoft could keep it going though just to say they've got a tablet.

Comment: Electronic Purse is Already Done (Score 1) 463

by mpapet (#39434859) Attached to: Surviving the Cashless Cataclysm

Let's back up for a minute:

#1 reason for a country to go to an electronic purse is to eliminate the tremendous costs of managing currency. Think about the logistics required to keep money in an economy. It's not just "oh, ship $10 million USD to Las Vegas so peoples can gamble or whatever." It's an ENORMOUS HASSLE. Electronic purses are very tantalizing way to be far more efficient as a currency provider.

Banks and nations have mostly gone to a banking standard with a smart card providing a great degree of fraud protection for online transactions. "ONLINE" means anywhere a trusted network connection/payment terminal is set up. Done. Use a debit/credit card and any number of officious people can get that transaction information. Most of you guys and the girl reading this don't seem to mind this...

What you are attempting to discuss is OFFLINE transactions. This software is sometimes referred to as an electronic purse.

Bob wants to give Joe $10 for a cool Commodore 64 and there's no paper currency in the economy. So, Bob has his smart card and puts it into a dumb, untrusted reader. The reader device asks how much to transfer. Joe then sticks his card in and like magic $10 in value is added to Joe's card and Bob's is credited with no network connection. Can the transaction be fed back to some server? Depends on the electronic purse. Can you have a relatively anonymous system that works? Yes.

Lots worse privacy issues than this. It's just that it's not okay to talk about them. We got to protect ourselves from those Terrists and all.

Where's my mobile phone that is a pay terminal? USA is still in the stone ages making a killing with 'identity protection' schemes and magnetic stripes. Why? Banks make more money and it's pretty cheap.

Your Rights Online

+ - Another Expansion of Corporate Powers in Stop Onli->

Submitted by mpapet
mpapet (761907) writes "Get ready for another expansion of corporate media powers with the "Stop Online Piracy Act." The bill is another try at expanding the control of the Internet to corporations.
-Corporations can create and enforce nationwide DNS blacklists.
-Allows the government to deny the use of anti-censorship software.
The best for last:
-Unspecified copyright violations related to Internet activities will be classified as felonies.

A version of the bill dated 2011-10-26 is here:"

Link to Original Source

Comment: Not the Car Analogy... AGGGGHHH!! (Score 1) 591

by mpapet (#37050058) Attached to: Old Arguments May Cost Linux the Desktop

You are calling open source desktops out for things no one in the industry does.

To use a car example, it's like a car with high torque and excellent gas mileage, but ugly to look at and the instruments are labelled differently and in the back seat.
You've never owned a 70's era American car, have you? The funny thing is, some people Loooove those 70's cars.

Where are the open source tech writers? The ones who take that part of the problem and work alongside the engineers to ensure quality documentation?
Under the "help" menu option? If you have geek cred, man FTW!

Where are the open source ergonomic experts,
Are you kidding me? They are working for Microsoft or Apple. You know how Office looks nothing like the OS GUI? That's their hard work right there.

the usability analysts, the aesthetic artists?
Who? What? Is this the geek version of the old Hollywood line "I'm a director."

Who ever does usability studies, or consistency between apps?
When does this happen in the industry? Adobe doesn't talk to Apple or Microsoft when they are designing yet another loose menu. Microsoft's own Office dev team *clearly* does not talk to the OS people.

Comment: Whaaaaat!?!?!?! (Score 1) 591

by mpapet (#37049948) Attached to: Old Arguments May Cost Linux the Desktop

For Linux to ever have a shot on the desktop, it would have to stop being Linux. Namely it would have to get some standards beyond the kernel.

Bwahahaha!! You mean, like Microsoft and Apple follow desktop standards? C'mon. See freedesktop for your desktop standards.

it is a rich experience that comprises, well, everything you find on a Windows or MacOS disc.
Oh, look at that, Debian releases desktop-specific disks. If I do nothing during install, I get a full-feature GNOME desktop. If I select options clearly presented, I can have KDE, XFCE, LXDE appear like magic when I reboot. I tell you it's MAGIC!!!!

And since when does microsoft release a full-featured set of applications with their minimal installed OS? Apple? A default Debian desktop install gets you a very good image editor, very good "office" suite, PDF ripping, audio and video playing desktop, great web browsers. Apple and Microsoft cannot make the same claim.

Along those lines it would have to do away with having source be something a user had any idea existed. No distributing programs as source, no recompiling the kernel to make something work, all binary all the time for users.

1999 called and they want you back when this claim was possibly valid...

Comment: Bzzzt!! Wrong Answer (Score 1) 257

by mpapet (#35830884) Attached to: Who Killed Spotify?

Yell and stomp your feet all you want, nothing will come of it.

The point of DRM is to make it sufficiently hard to violate copyright. That's all.

Breakable DRM is a balancing act between looking the other way while entertainment media is distributed as a kind of loss leader, and generating sufficient fear that the RIAA will litigate you for violating copyright.

They don't need to change, they know what you like and have copyright and intellectual property law on their side. Meanwhile your right to repurpose your content has been sodomized with set top boxes. And you like it that way.

Until you stop feeding the RIAA members your money, nothing is going to stop them.

Economists state their GNP growth projections to the nearest tenth of a percentage point to prove they have a sense of humor. -- Edgar R. Fiedler