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Government

Supreme Court Ruling Supports Same-Sex Marriage 1083

The U.S. Supreme Court issued Friday a landmark decision, ruling that marriage is a Constitutionally protected right to homosexual as well as heterosexual couples. The New York Times notes that last year, by refusing to hear appeals to decisions favoring same-sex marriage in five states, the court "delivered a tacit victory for gay rights, immediately expanding the number of states with same-sex marriage to 24, along with the District of Columbia, up from 19." (In the time since, several more states have expanded marriage to include gay couples.) Reuters expains a bit of the legal and political history of the movement which led to today's decision, and points out some of the countries around the world which have made similar moves already.

Comment Re: simpler? exclusive ad channel? (Score 2) 161

I use a hosts file on my computer to block ads and I use Adblock on my iPad.

I use a PVR or DVR on my TV. I hate ads. They don't work. I wasted a few thousand dollars a couple years ago on radio ads to realize that people have tuned out all ads.

I pay for satelite radio to avoid ads there.

Find another revenue stream. Ads are history. Only the ad execs and the hopeful still want them to work.

Comment Re:The future of console games (Score 1) 249

Hated Sony since the rootkit days...

Used to buy some games from Direct2Drive. They were great, cheap and worked. I could download the install files and keys and install on all the machines in my house. Then they got bought out, keys didn't work anymore and you had to re-download everything again. I went to Pirate Bay, downloaded the iso's and used my Direct2Drive keys. They never mentioned when I bought the games that they could ever disappear.

I never trust them anymore. I have hard copies of those olser games. I only really play World of Tanks now. Since that one is pointless without the servers... well.. if it dies, I find something else to play.

Comment Re:Cheap and sounds great! (Score 1) 249

Exactly. I bought a used Technics system for $175. Sound is awesome. It's the old "class A" amp.

The difference between this 30 year old gear and newer stuff is that this is real rms. You can feel the room shake, yet you can still talk to each other.

I've been sold on Technics for years, too bad they went belly up years ago.

Biotech

New Study Says Governments Should Ditch Reliance On Biofuels 224

HughPickens.com writes The NYT reports on a new study from a prominent environmental think tank that concludes turning plant matter into liquid fuel or electricity is so inefficient that the approach is unlikely ever to supply a substantial fraction of global energy demand. They add that continuing to pursue this strategy is likely to use up vast tracts of fertile land that could be devoted to helping feed the world's growing population. "I would say that many of the claims for biofuels have been dramatically exaggerated," says Andrew Steer, president of the World Resources Institute, a global research organization based in Washington that is publishing the report. "There are other, more effective routes to get to a low-carbon world." The report follows several years of rising concern among scientists about biofuel policies in the United States and Europe, and is the strongest call yet by the World Resources Institute, known for nonpartisan analysis of environmental issues, to urge governments to reconsider those policies.

Timothy D. Searchinger says recent science has challenged some of the assumptions underpinning many of the pro-biofuel policies that have often failed to consider the opportunity cost of using land to produce plants for biofuel. According to Searchinger, if forests or grasses were grown instead of biofuels, that would pull carbon dioxide out of the air, storing it in tree trunks and soils and offsetting emissions more effectively than biofuels would do. What is more, as costs for wind and solar power have plummeted over the past decade, and the new report points out that for a given amount of land, solar panels are at least 50 times more efficient than biofuels at capturing the energy of sunlight in a useful form. "It's true that our first-generation biofuels have not lived up to their promise," says Jason Hill said. "We've found they do not offer the environmental benefits they were purported to have, and they have a substantial negative impact on the food system."

Comment Re:Wow (Score 1) 98

Just fyi, I get 10 hours of "streaming" on my phone with my cell package.

Few issues:

1. I can only watch what channels I have subscribed to on my satelite. (fair enough)
2. I can only watch what they "let me" watch. Not everything live or anything available.(utter bs)
3. The service is absolute shit. It just doesn't work. The network can't handle it. Most useless "service" I've ever paid for. (most useless app on my phone)

Star Wars Prequels

Disney Turned Down George Lucas's Star Wars Scripts 422

ageoffri writes: When Star Wars fans learned that George Lucas was making the prequels, most were filled with excitement and anticipation. When Episodes 1-3 were actually released, many found them unsatisfying, and became disillusioned with Lucas's writing. Now, it appears Disney felt the same way. Though they bought Lucasfilm and began production on Episode 7, they weren't interested in using the scripts Lucas had already worked on. In an interview, he said, "The ones that I sold to Disney, they came up to the decision that they didn't really want to do those. So they made up their own. So it's not the ones that I originally wrote [on screen in Star Wars: The Force Awakens]." After what happened with the prequels, that may be for the best — but others may worry about Episode 7's plot being entirely in the hands of Disney and JJ Abrams.
Windows

Microsoft Reveals Windows 10 Will Be a Free Upgrade 570

mpicpp was one of many to point out this bit of news about Windows 10."Microsoft just took another big step toward the release of Windows 10 and revealed it will be free for many current Windows users. The company unveiled the Windows 10 consumer preview on Wednesday, showcasing some of the new features in the latest version of the operating system that powers the vast majority of the world's desktop PCs. The developer preview has been available since Microsoft first announced Windows 10 in the fall, but it was buggy, limited in scope and very light on new features. Importantly, Windows 10 will be free for existing Windows users running versions of Windows back to Windows 7. That includes Windows 7, 8, 8.1 and Windows Phone. Microsoft specified it would only be free for the first year, indicating Windows would be software that users subscribe to, rather than buy outright. Microsoft Corporate Vice President of the Operating Systems Group Joe Belfiore showed off some of the new features in Windows 10. While Microsoft had already announced it would bring back the much-missed Start Menu, Belfiore revealed it would also have a full-screen mode that includes more of the Windows 8 Start screen. He said Windows machines would go back and forth between to two menus in a way that wouldn't confuse people. Belfiore also showed a new notification center for Windows, which puts a user's notifications in an Action Center menu that can appear along the right side, similar to how notifications work in Apple OS X. Microsoft Executive Vice President of Operating Systems Terry Myerson revealed that 1.7 million people had downloaded the Windows 10 developer preview, giving Microsoft over 800,000 individual piece of feedback. Myerson explained that Windows 10 has several main intents: the give users a mobility of experience from device to device, instill a sense of trust in users, and provide the most natural ways to interact with devices." More details are available directly from Microsoft.

Comment Re:64bit (Score 1) 640

The best example I have of my frustrations with Windows 7: set up a static ip or check network settings.

Windows XP, right click on network icon-> properties.

Window 7, Right click network icon ->Open Network and Sharing Center -> Click change adapter Settings ->Right Click Local Area Connection-> Properties.

Why Microsoft Why? You have only made things more difficult? What were you thinking? Or smoking? There are more examples of this stupidity, but this one angers me the most.

Can anyone give me a valid reason why they added 3 more steps for no apparent reason?

Comment Re:Up to $5k... (Score 4, Insightful) 161

The big thing that people miss is: They can only sue for the value of goods downloaded. AND they must prove that. No fishing.

This is not Canada bending over for Amerika, It's Harper saying "Screw you" you're not going to threaten Canadians.

If, for example, I go buy a movie, then download a version for my media centre, I have not committed a crime. I have paid for it. If I download it, and have not bought a copy, and they catch me, they can only sue me for $20 for the copy, not millions like the states.

There will not be any 6 million lawsuits here.

If the media companies weren't so stupid, they would price it properly and no-one would pirate. Who needs to pirate any songs anymore? I can just fire up Spotify and listen to whatever I want. If the movie industry ever pulls their heads out of their asses, we'll have the same for movies.

/rant

Comment Re:Creators wishing to control their creations... (Score 1) 268

I have hundreds of dvd's in my house. Each one is either ripped or a torrent downloaded from Piratebay before I watch it.

The Canadian laws say that a content provider (copyright holder) is only allowed to sue me for the value of the lost products (lost sales).

Since I can show a legally purchased dvd, there is no loss. No charges will ever stand up in court. We also have the right to own dvd copyright protection removal software.

This is my way of using what I bought the way I want to. I totally agree with the parent, if i BUY something, I have every right to use it as I see fit. Remember when these assholes wanted you to buy a song for your stereo, then another copy for your computer, then another one for your car? Sony rootkit? This industry seriously needs an enema.

Netflix and Spotify will be the norm soon. No-one will buy anything.

Comment Computer License (Score 1) 321

Enough of the Word Perfect Users already!

"Take it back to the store, You're too dumb to own a computer" Are these threats now as dangerous or potentially dangerous as operating a motor vehicle?

Training and License? Why not? It couldn't be any worse than it is now. I've literally had a client complaining that he couldn't get his email using Wordpad...

How dumb and negligent do we need people to be before we do something serious about this?

Spam, drive by downloads, malware. Isn't it about time we told the users to smarten up? How much productivity and electricity is wasted because of users dumb mistakes?

Like punning, programming is a play on words.

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