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Comment: Re:Denial of use (Score 1) 281

by ogl_codemonkey (#47287271) Attached to: Mt. Gox CEO Returns To Twitter, Enrages Burned Investors

Maybe I can get in with this before the entire debate falls apart... hah, yeah right. Anyway, here goes:

The Copyright equivalent of stealing a candy bar (or a car from a dealership, to use your earlier analogy) from a grocery store is actually:

  1. Man enters a grocery store and sees a $1 candy bar
  2. He goes home and produces his own candy bar just like it, with the resources he has available; with his own time, energy, and equipment (stove, mixer, trays and moulds), and ingredients (chocolate, nougat, peanuts, whatever)
  3. He could eat this bar, give it away, or sell it without having *stolen* anything.

The original candy bar is still available for purchase for $1 to the next customer. If the Man in the example were selling his candy bars for profit, he would have effectively created a competing business to the grocery store. If he sells them wholesale to the store, he's competing with their other distributors.

If they are confusingly similar to the original brand, he may be infringing the manufacturer's protected trade marks. If he uses their patented process to put bubbles in chocolate or something, he may be infringing their patent; but legal competition for manufactured goods is specifically not covered by Copyright law.

Back to the car example, manufactured goods may contain Copyright-protected work, i.e. microcode in the car's engine management unit; but if you build a functional equivalent of your own without infringing patented methods, you're good to go.

Keep in mind that a car manufacturer will have registered 'trade marks' like "the distinctive tail light arrangement" that you won't be allowed to produce competing goods 'confusingly similar to', but you can (YMMV, consult a lawyer) build one for your own use.

And yes, for the sake of argument a physical work *can* be subject to protection by Copyright, but would generally need to show substantial creative effort and merit to be enforced; such as a carved statue. In the case of the car example, the Copyright would apply to the manufacturer's plans, CAD/CAM files, and maybe physical prototypes; but almost certainly not the result of the process (again, YMMV, consult a laywer)

Comment: Re:This just in. (Score 1) 281

by ogl_codemonkey (#47287215) Attached to: Mt. Gox CEO Returns To Twitter, Enrages Burned Investors

People keep using the term "Fair Use" in a legal context as though it means what it would mean in an ordinary conversation. It does not mean that your 'use' is 'fair', but rather that it complies with the specific exceptions to Copyright law that are granted under that title. Call it whatever you like; as you say, it's still infringing copyright (and also the DMCA, due to that handy little anti-circumvention section, since you mention DRM), and the courts would find against you as such.

Not directing this at david_thornley, it's just a clarification that I feel should be made more often; particularly on Slashdot.

Comment: Re:Not sure what they mean... (Score 1) 250

I imagine that Google thinks it far more common for one person with more than one of [ PC | laptop | phone | tablet ] to have the majority of same in the country they are in, than to only take one of the above to another country.

If you took your laptop, phone, and tablet with you, you'd be thinking that you should only have to change your location preference on one.

Really, I think changing my 'home' location exactly once for each time I stay somewhere new is pretty much exactly what I'm looking for.

Comment: Re:Sigh (Score 1) 532

by ogl_codemonkey (#44076515) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Does LED Backlight PWM Drive You Crazy?

A hundred times this.

Far from a PWM issue, most likely the cheap displays that illustrate this issue have insufficient power smoothing, and the culprit is likely the 100 or 120 Hz fluctuation from rectified AC, or (yes, some are really this bad), 50 or 60 Hz from clipped AC.

The duty cycle of a CRT phosphor group is in the order of 1/1,000,000 for an SDTV resolution - the point intensity of the energised area is unimaginably bright; look for high-speed footage of a TV to get some idea of it; or if you have a digital camera of some worth, take a pic at 1/2500 and see how many lines are still saturating the CCD.

Comment: Re:Windows 7 (Score 3, Interesting) 965

by ogl_codemonkey (#43166287) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Mac To Linux Return Flow?

Having long been a fan of minimalist window managers like Fluxbox, a friend recently recommended xmonad, which I promptly installed; and since doing so I have been amazed at how much time I can spend not managing windows.

There's apparently also osxmonad for the 'traitors,' but I haven't tried that out yet.

Comment: Re:underwhelmed (Score 1) 120

by ogl_codemonkey (#42953917) Attached to: Linux 3.8 Released

... you'll be recompiling everything it depends on right down to the widget set plus everything that depends on any of that plus anything that depends on those things, and so on, recursively.

I always saw it as a feature than when a library maintainer fixed a bug, it'd get fixed in all the software that was using said library; or a any libraries that was wrapping that library, or any software that was using that wrapper...

Transportation

+ - A $20 Cardboard Bicycle Could Revolutionize World's Transportation 1

Submitted by
Hugh Pickens writes
Hugh Pickens writes writes "Reuters reports that a bicycle made almost entirely of cardboard designed to be manufactured at about $9 to $12 per unit that would be sold for about $20 has the potential to change transportation habits from the world's most congested cities to the poorest reaches of Africa. "In six months we will have completed planning the first production lines for an urban bike which will be assisted by an electric motor, a youth bike which will be a 2/3 size model for children in Africa, a balance bike for youngsters learning to ride, and a wheelchair that a non-profit organization wants to build with our technology for Africa," says Nimrod Elmish. The bicycles are not only very cheap to make, but at 20 pounds they are very light and do not need to be adjusted or repaired, the solid tires that are made of reconstituted rubber from old car tires will never get a puncture. "These bikes need no maintenance and no adjustment, a car timing belt is used instead of a chain, and the tires do not need inflating and can last for 10 years," says Elmish adding that the bicycles will be so cheap, it hardly matters how long they last. "So you buy one, use it for a year and then you can buy another one, and if it breaks, you can take it back to the factory and recycle it." Cardboard, made of wood pulp, was invented in the 19th century as sturdy packaging for carrying other more valuable objects, it has rarely been considered as raw material for things usually made of much stronger materials, such as metal. Inventor Izhar Gafni spent years figuring out how to make cardboard strong enough to support a human. The trick was bending and gluing the cardboard in such a way that it becomes strong like a piece of wood. In a video, Gafni describes the process as a type of origami, and demonstrates how his cardboard is strong enough to support a car. As in crafting origami and tearing telephone books, Gafni explains, “[if] you fold it once, and it’s not just twice the strength, it’s three times the strength.”"

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