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Comment Re:Have an awareness raising conversation (Score 1) 278

Maybe on the interstate, but it's rarely a problem on the kinds of streets where you might encounter pedestrians.

Let's not forgot:

Results show that the average risk of severe injury for a pedestrian struck by a vehicle reaches 10% at an impact speed of 16 mph, 25% at 23 mph, 50% at 31 mph, 75% at 39 mph, and 90% at 46 mph. The average risk of death for a pedestrian reaches 10% at an impact speed of 23 mph, 25% at 32 mph, 50% at 42 mph, 75% at 50 mph, and 90% at 58 mph. Risks vary significantly by age. For example, the average risk of severe injury or death for a 70âyearâold pedestrian struck by a car travelling at 25 mph is similar to the risk for a 30âyearâold pedestrian struck at 35 mph.


Comment Re:Punish jaywalking (Score 1) 278

Yes indeed. There are though a lot of drivers who just transit through SF on city streets - see where highways 1 and 101 go. In fact I've done this myself when staying down near San Jose and needing to go to meetings north of the Golden Gate Bridge. And for the people who can still afford to live downtown, I don't know why you'd want to drive anywhere within the city, but then I've chosen to live in a city where this lifestyle is the lesser option.

Comment IceComm: serverless video conferencing, very easy. (Score 1) 114

Set up IceComm on a web site that only you and your kids can access, and give them the Chrome browser with a bookmark to go there at scheduled times ..

Very easy to set up server less video conferencing. Add a bit of TogetherJS to the mix and you've got realtime chat as well - without needing to install anything on any local computers besides the Chrome browser.

I use IceComm on my main server as the 'front door' to my business - I have a browser sitting on my front door all day, and whenever clients visit I'm ready for them. Its just like having a virtual front door to the business .. very handy and very care-free for the customers.

Comment Barcelona, Spain (Score 1) 278

There ^^, fixed it for you. Catalonia isn't a separate state (yet). For most of us outside the US we don't even need to qualify which country Barcelona's in because we all know this as a given, and anywhere else in the new world that has the same name is the exception and needs to be qualified. Interesting that you mentioned "Catalonia" though... pushing some sort of political agenda or just ignorance of the place? Also interesting that you picked Barcelona and not some other better known or more congested city. This whole story just seems a bit weird and parochial.

Actually why even this story about San Francisco? It's hardly the worst offender in the US for pedestrian deaths at 1.7 deaths/100,000 - picking three comparable sized cities from Table 8 of this doc:
* Detroit, MI: 3.99
* Jacksonville, FL: 3.23
* Austin, TX: 2.97

It looks to me like a lot of US cities could do a lot to reclaim their cities back from cars, when you look at London which is vastly bigger and more congested with pedestrians. There were 65 pedestrians killed in London in 2013 compared with San Francisco's 29, which is a city a tenth the size:

Comment Re:Punish jaywalking (Score 3, Interesting) 278

Getting rid of jaywalking laws so and reseting the attitudes and expectations of drivers so that they show more caution and slow down might be more effective. Allowing people on foot to reclaim their city from the motor car will make cities a better place. It would be better to lobby for better and more transportation alternatives than entrenching driving. In some congested places like London they've even talked about remove all signage and lane markings to create "naked streets", because actually this makes drivers slow down and pay more attention and care. As a visitor to San Francisco my observation is that drivers rush too much and drive too much like aresholes in their rush to get across the city.

Comment Re:Right Of Way (Score 4, Interesting) 278

Not everywhere. Maybe virtually everywhere in this US? Come to London: we don't have this nanny state concept of "jaywalking", just personal responsibility. Pedestrians do cross the roads wherever they like and whenever they think they can. It's up to the drivers to be aware of this and drive appropriately for the conditions. Trust me, as a cyclist in this city some parts of the West End are pretty scary: not because of the vehicles but because of nob-ends with their noses in mobile phones or just crowd mentality of one person's crossing so we all will.

Comment Re:Everyone Is Guilty, Only Enemies Will Be Indict (Score 3, Insightful) 108

If you are a leftist, beating the shit out of private companies is well and good. Remember: corporations are evil! Prosecuting them is only a good thing. Are you a corporate shill?

I am neither a leftist nor a corporate shill. I believe in beating the shit out of private companies that deserve to have the "shit beat out" of them. You need only look at the lengthy history of consumer protection in the United States to find instances where this was and is necessary. Take, for example, Debt Collection Practices. Please, please, please "beat the shit out" of unscrupulous collection agencies. Please "beat the shit" out of the companies that call my grandmother to deliver unsolicited advertisements about a "warranty extension" on her car. There are plenty of private companies that should have this done to them. The issue I take with China's implementation is 1) that it will never target a state owned business and 2) the guidelines are by no means clearly laid out and can be ambiguously interpreted. Who will interpret them? When will they interpret them? Why just in time and by the same state body that made them. Please tell me, how can I prove that my product's advertising does not "Cause detriment to national dignity"?

Comment Do Not Conflate This With Individual Free Speech (Score 2) 108

Communists don't believe in free speech?


It's not that binary. The United States has its own truth in advertising laws that, in my personal opinion, are beneficial at both the federal and state level. Slashdot readers are free to go the Libertarian route and claim the free market would alleviate these issues on its own or perhaps point out how downright pedantic it can be at times. But the truth of the matter is that, as a consumer, we only have so many hours in a day to decide which of the thousands of products we consume in a year we should spend our money on. So it does come down to federal guidelines for what is "Grade A" or "Organic" or "Green" when there is a label espousing these properties and there are consumers paying a premium for this notion. Without those guidelines those words will mean absolutely nothing and there will be no way to tell where your product was made, how much cadmium it has in it or whether it is the end result of spewing carbon into the atmosphere. Without similar laws, you wouldn't be able to trust the nutritional information at the grocery store. Is it free speech to claim that my potato chips cure cancer and lead to weight loss no matter how many of them you eat? People will know that I'm lying? Cigarettes used to sooth sore throats. Trans fats used to taste awesome.

Speech used by an individual to express ideas is free speech. Advertisements -- especially advertisements representing a very large organization -- are not. Corporations should not have the same rights individuals have and I feel that free speech is one of those clear cut distinctions. There is a long history of consumer protection everywhere in the world -- learn about your own country's struggles with it. It's not a simple issue and advertisement should not be regarded as free speech.

Comment Everyone Is Guilty, Only Enemies Will Be Indicted (Score 5, Insightful) 108

Here is the full text of the newly amended law. Here is the WIPO listing the deltas with the older 1994 version of the law (click expand notes). It appears that this is the first change in this law since 1994. Also the WIPO provides a PDF of their English version which seems to be slightly different. I also found a definition of the extent of what is regulated advertising by the PRC. Here's the WIPO's full list of defined restrictions:

1) Overt or covert use of national flag, anthem or emblem of People’s Republic of China or military flag, anthem or emblem;
2) Overt or covert use of the name or image of national public institute or staff of national public institute;
3) Use of words such as “national-level”, “the most” and “the best”, among others;
4) Causing detriment to national dignity or interests, or disclosing national secrets;
5) Interfering with social stability, or causing detriment to social and public interests;
6) Harming personal or property safety, or disclosing privacy;
7) Interfering with social public order, or going against good social norm;
8) Containing obscene, pornographic, gambling, superstitious, terrifying, or violent content;
9) Containing discrimination based on nationality, race, religion, or gender;
10) Affecting protection of environment, natural resources or cultural heritage;
11) Other situations prohibited by laws and regulations.

Merely sounds like another tool for the Party to deal with companies that are not state owned. Most companies will be found guilty of some section of this but they won't be prosecuted until they run afoul of the Party. In China (and increasingly in the US) everyone is guilty of something but only those that the state wants to be prosecuted will be prosecuted.

So looking at the story, we have a new law enacted a month ago and whose head is on the chopping block today? Xiaomi? Well from wikipedia:

Xiaomi Inc. is a privately owned Chinese electronics company headquartered in Beijing, China, that is the world's 4th[4] largest smartphone maker. Xiaomi designs, develops, and sells smartphones, mobile apps, and related consumer electronics.[5]

Aaaaaand there's your problem. Wake me up when a state owned company is prosecuted under these new laws. Xiaomi's true crime was probably doing better than Huawei.

Comment Re:Without government... (Score 1) 466

Only now, as a cyclist in London, you're having a lot of trouble with cars? Consider taking the Tube? Yeah, I know why not. Try being a cyclist in Manhattan.

Since 1996 I've lived and cycled as a way of life in Denver, Toronto, Shanghai, Melbourne and London, amongst other places... North American drivers are just utter shit. It starts with ridiculously easy driving test. I have less space and more traffic in London yet I feel the drivers know I'm there and know how to drive pass me (although most of the time I'm passing them in this city ;) ) And damn, the Tube is too slow compared with cycling, and forget driving if you're in a rush because it will take 2x longer than the train.

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