Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re: not honest (Score 1) 329

by PopeRatzo (#48906739) Attached to: Americans Support Mandatory Labeling of Food That Contains DNA

"Safe" doesn't even have to be the issue. The issue is, why are these people so keen to make sure consumers don't know where their food comes from? Even more important, why are they so keen to make sure that consumers don't know where their food money is going?

When I buy a bag of rice or an ear of corn, I want to know whether or not my money is going to pay for a license fee for intellectual property covering a basic foodstuff. Because I would rather it did not. And for some strange reason, there is a group of people out there who believe I should not have that choice as a consumer, and they use "science" as their reason.

Comment: Challenge Accepted. (Score 5, Insightful) 268

As much as I'm deeply displeased that the attitude would be 'give us what we want or we'll take it, Stasi-style'; I'd see a situation where the spooks are forced to resort to physical intrusion as a vast improvement.

Implicit in the GCHQ flack's 'threat' is the idea that totally invisible 'no touch' surveillance is somehow better and nicer. In the sense that it has better PR, and is easier to maintain (and on a massive scale) without public outcry or logistically overwhelming amounts of black-bag work, this is true. In terms of the relationship between the clandestine agencies and even the pretense of democratic government, though, I'd say that it's exactly the opposite.

If team spook has the advantage of technology for scale and efficiency, and is capable of invisibly watching more or less everything without any visible signs of having done so, you have about as imbalanced a situation as one could reasonably imagine. A perfect panopticon; but so subtle that you sound like some sort of schizo nutjob for suggesting that it is happening. If they actually have to break and bug, this will mean more physical intrusion; but it also creates a de-facto limit on how broadly they can pursue fishing expeditions, and how reasonably they can make the assumption that they will never be caught.

If what he says about more encryption is true; bring it on.

Comment: Rumor: Fox Is Planning an X-Files Revival (Score 1) 336

by eldavojohn (#48904215) Attached to: Best 1990s Sci-fi show?
In the news recently are rumors that Carter, Anderson and Duchovny will reunite for new X-Files episodes. Fox has sorta confirmed this.

I own all the DVDs, a couple years ago I rewatched them. I may come off as a rabid fan at times but the background music was atrociously horrid. Also the story arc plot became overly convoluted and impossible to explain at times. That said, one of the most convoluted characters (Krycek) was my favorite. Aside from several minor valid criticisms like that, I really think it's a great platform for modern storytelling.

I do have to ask myself, at times, if there is some level of insane conspiracy theory today that we owe at least in part to those people watching X-Files when younger. I have to admit that the 9/11 inside job truthers movement claims could have been ripped from the pages of an X-Files script.

My biggest concern, of course, is whether or not it could still be fresh. With recent high quality additions to television canon, we'd have to be prepared for Chris Carter coming back at us with a 90's angle when episodes like Home really aren't as shocking anymore. The bar has been raised (thankfully).

Right now, The X-Files is going to occupy a contextual place in television history like The Twilight Zone. A revival could very well tarnish that. On the other hand, I've never felt like I really received closure on the whole story arc ...

Comment: Re:What's the problem? (Score 3, Funny) 117


chemicals my friend

wouldn't take much of the right kind. nice aerosolizer already provided by the craft

biologic if you're exotic

nuclear just plain stupider

but for maximum shits and giggles and no loss of life, i'd load a degaussing coil on a drone and fly it through a target office. do a little tap over all the workstations to get the hard drives

oh shit, am i on some list now?

Comment: Re:Quadcopter (Score 4, Insightful) 117

That's (among the) downsides of our obsession with risk-minimization, overwhelming force, and technological supremacy. Whether it's using $40k hellfires to destroy rust-eaten technicals in hellholistan or calling out the bomb squad every time somebody tosses a paper airplane over the white house fence, we really need to maintain that economic superiority if we want to survive the sheer attrition.

Comment: Re:I Don't Buy It (Score 1) 336

the topic is

Anonymous Asks Activists To Fight Pedophiles In 'Operation Deatheaters'

do you have anything useful to say on the topic?

that's what i tried to do, and i got many even tempered, thoughtful replies, on topic (except for yours)

but for me to speak on topic, eliciting on topic responses... that's "trolling" according to you

meanwhile, all you seem to do is talk about *me*. why? how is that useful? how is that helpful to the topic? i'm not the topic douchebag

if you desire some sort of interpersonal friction, you might want to try a dating site. otherwise, shut the fuck up, and stay on topic, or you're a useless troll

Comment: The utterly obnoxious part... (Score 5, Insightful) 193

by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (#48903627) Attached to: Verizon, Cable Lobby Oppose Spec-Bump For Broadband Definition
What I find utterly insufferable about this 'argument'(if it rises to a level where you can call it that) is how badly it misses the point:

Netflix and a few friends say that 25/3 is needed because a household might be streaming multiple things while running a cloud backup and doing some skyping or something. Verizon et al. say that such usage is atypical, and therefore everyone can take the status quo and like it.

In both cases, the most important bit is being ignored: new uses for bandwidth are not going to emerge(or are going to be academic and deep-pocketed-corporate curiosities) unless there is at least some prospect of bandwidth being available. Does 'today's typical use case' need 25/3? Probably not; because it was developed under the constraints of a market where 25/3 is markedly above average, so anyone developing products and services is condemning themselves to a niche if they require very high bandwidth, especially upstream.

If just doing what you did last year, forever, was good enough, 'broadband' would still involve an acoustic coupler. Chicken/egg.

Comment: Re:not honest (Score 1) 329

by PopeRatzo (#48903567) Attached to: Americans Support Mandatory Labeling of Food That Contains DNA

It's "anti-science" to be opposed to the application of intellectual property laws to basic foodstuffs? It's "anti-science" to be opposed to putting ownership of that IP in the hands of companies like Monsanto?

Is it "pro-science" to want to keep the provenance of consumers' food a secret?

The problem with you pro-GMO people is that for some reason, you appear desperate to promote something for which there is no benefit to consumers and that may cause serious harm to the economics and politics of our food supply.

Comment: Umm... (Score 2) 69

by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (#48902229) Attached to: SpaceX, US Air Force Settle Spy Sat Dispute
Maybe I just don't understand the bold postmodern reality where you can change things just by changing what you call them; but isn't a 'united alliance' between the two effective players in a market what we used to call a 'cartel'?

Is there some sort of argument in favor of it that gets trotted out with a straight face when someone asks if there was just too much 'ruinous competition' between Boeing and Lockheed, and some 'price stability' was badly needed, or is this purely a because we can sort of operation?

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (10) Sorry, but that's too useful.