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Comment Re:I have a better idea (Score 2) 171

I have a feeling this wouldn't work in America. The basis for government isn't trust, but fear. As someone who's lived in Finland all his life, I have to tell you the reason any of our "socialism" (!!!) and national resident registry with IDs for everybody works, is because people in office aren't fucking around, at least that much, at least yet. There is a strict culture of disdain for screwing up here in Finland, so if you're the chief of police of some town and are caught drunk driving, you're busted, doesn't matter what your status is. People in power are in power because they're servants of the public and have a responsibility, not because they're privileged little kings. This is probably the reason why we come #1 in corruption rankings as the least corrupt country.

If I were an American, and the government introduced a national registry for citizens and gave everybody an ID, I would be very suspicious and would be against it, at least if it were being implemented at a federal level. Here, though, I have no problem with it and honestly it just helps things so much, like not having to waste time when moving by telling everybody about your new address, because you can just change your address online at the population registry, and this address will be updated to all utility companies, etc. whose services you use and also the postal service. That national ID is also used for taxation, voting, medical records, etc. everything useful.

Comment Re:Get a refill.. (Score 1) 1141

As long as the government is intervening in their every day life by providing a safety net for their irresponsible decisions, how is this a bad thing?

Okay, I would agree with you if this was about a law here in Finland or in the UK where I stay most of the time, where that's consistent with the government culture in that country, but NOT in the US. The spirit of the constitution and country is clearly minimum government intervention in private life, including nanny state behavior, regardless of whether it supposedly promotes better behavior.

Comment The unfortunate truth (Score 1) 74

It's unfortunate that so many of my peers seem to blindly allow any kind of Facebook script/application run even if it requires the ability to post under your name, spreading spam like this. I have to admit I've clicked on a few of these links sometimes, those along the lines of "biggest boobs ever! Must watch" out of curiosity, only to be redirected to a malicious app at which point I just left the page.

The same goes for these new, legitimate news readers that tell which articles your friends read on Guardian for example, and clicking on the link leads to an app requesting permission to spy on me. No thanks, I'll just Google the damn title of the article if it's that hard to give me a direct link, ffs.

Comment Surprisingly common occurence (Score 2) 190

I'm not sure who or what the persons are who do this, but as someone with around 300 Facebook friends, I've received at least 5 friend requests from dummy profiles (fake name, fake profile pic, awfully "sterile" personal info) with an oddly high number of mutual friends. I doubt it was any of our teachers as they use their real profiles and friended us if they wished to, including our principal. Could it be some sort of a bot for harvesting personal information that would otherwise be inaccessible to non-friends, or just a stalker from within my/my friends' social circle who's trying to remain anonyous?
The Internet

BT Blocks Access To Pirate Bay 360

Barence writes "BT and other mobile broadband providers are blocking access to The Pirate Bay as part of a 'self-regulation' scheme with the Internet Watch Foundation. BT Mobile Broadband users who attempt to access the notorious BitTorrent tracker site are met with a 'content blocked' message. The warning page states the page has been blocked in 'compliance with a new UK voluntary code.' 'This uses a barring and filtering mechanism to restrict access to all WAP and internet sites that are considered to have "over 18" status,' the warning states. It goes on to list a series of categories that are blocked, including adult/sexually explicit content, 'criminal skills,' and hacking. It's not stated which category The Pirate Bay breaches, although the site does host links to porn movies."

China Aims To Move Up the Food Chain 257

krou notes reporting in the Christian Science Monitor that the current economic crisis is helping China's push into higher-end manufacturing by shaking out low-profit companies. The hope is that, instead of just assembling iPods, Chinese companies will be able to invent the next big thing instead. In this move China is following the well-worn path taken by Japan and the Asian tigers before it. "Last month, the National Development and Reform Commission announced revised plans to transform Guangdong and neighboring Hong Kong and Macau into a 'significant innovation center' by 2020. One hundred R&D labs will be set up over the next three years. By 2012, per-capita output in the region should jump 50 percent from 2007, to 80,000 yuan ($11,700). And by 2020, the study predicts, 30 percent of all industrial output should come from high-tech manufacturing."
The Courts

Finnish Court Accepts E-Voting Result With 2% Lost 159

Nailor writes "The Helsinki Administrative court accepted the municipal voting result in an election in which 2% of votes cast were not counted at all. We discussed this situation at the time. The court noted that the e-voting machinery has a feature, that should be considered as an issue. However, it also noted that 'a little over two percent failure rate can not be considered as such as a proof that the voting official would have acted erroneously.' Does this mean 98% of votes is enough to figure out how the other 2% voted? Electronic Frontier Finland has a press release about the court decision (Google translation; Finnish original)."

The Post-Bilski Era Gets Underway 94

bfwebster writes "A set of pharmaceutical process patents for 'evaluating and improving the safety of immunization schedules' (Classen v. Biogen et al.; see US Patents 6,420,139; 6,638,379; 5,728,385; 5,723,283) were held to be invalid due to unpatentability. The decision was appealed to the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, but was upheld with a terse citation to In re Bilski (which decision we discussed here). Here's the entire text of the appeals decision: 'In light of our decision in In re Bilski, 545 F.3d 943 (Fed. Cir. 2008) (en banc), we affirm the district court's grant of summary judgment that these claims are invalid under 35 U.S.C. 101. Dr. Classen's claims are neither "tied to a particular machine or apparatus" nor do they "transform a particular article into a different state or thing." Bilski, 545 F.3d at 954. Therefore we affirm.' It will be interesting to see what happens when these same standards start getting applied to software-related patents."

Comment Re:no (Score 2, Informative) 531

What's Do you mean THEPIRATEBAY.ORG and if so, why wait for public trackers when you can.. ugh.. nevermind. Do you think San Andreas or Vice City was any different? No, they've always had SecuROM with GTAs and I've always applied a crack to my legit purchases because I don't want to keep or swap discs in my drive.

Wherever you go...There you are. - Buckaroo Banzai