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Comment: Re:Ashes to Ashes ... (Score 1) 268

by powerlord (#47947171) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What To Do After Digitizing VHS Tapes?

Synology has some nice RAID enclosures.

Get two with multiple drives and they can also be set up to sync with each, creating your own little data cloud (multiple locations, w/RAID 5 per location, sync with each other via internet). Only problem is making sure there is sufficient bandwidth between them.


FBI Completes New Face Recognition System 129

Posted by Soulskill
from the they-know-what-you-did-last-summer dept.
Advocatus Diaboli writes: According to a report from Gizmodo, "After six years and over one billion dollars in development, the FBI has just announced that its new biometric facial recognition software system is finally complete. Meaning that, starting soon, photos of tens of millions of U.S. citizen's faces will be captured by the national system on a daily basis. The Next Generation Identification (NGI) program will logs all of those faces, and will reference them against its growing database in the event of a crime. It's not just faces, though. Thanks to the shared database dubbed the Interstate Photo System (IPS), everything from tattoos to scars to a person's irises could be enough to secure an ID. What's more, the FBI is estimating that NGI will include as many as 52 million individual faces by next year, collecting identified faces from mug shots and some job applications." Techdirt points out that an assessment of how this system affects privacy was supposed to have preceded the actual rollout. Unfortunately, that assessment is nowhere to be found.

Two recent news items are related. First, at a music festival in Boston last year, face recognition software was tested on festival-goers. Boston police denied involvement, but were seen using the software, and much of the data was carelessly made available online. Second, both Ford and GM are working on bringing face recognition software to cars. It's intended for safety and security — it can act as authentication and to make sure the driver is paying attention to the road.

Comment: Re:Anti-competitive behavior is a big deal (Score 1) 312

by powerlord (#47810599) Attached to: Uber Now Blocked All Over Germany

IIRC the last taxi medallion that was openly sold in NYC went for north of $500K. Hardly a miniscule fee.

If there were only 10,000 programmer medallions available in the USA, would you stop coding?

Try ~$1m.

Granted, thats for a yellow medallion.
For an "Outer Borough Taxi" permit (all of NYC except Manhattan below 110th St on the west side and 96th St on the east side), it costs $1500 for three years (in addition to already being a licensed TLC Operator).

You're a little off in your analogy though, If you want to compare buying a taxi medallion to something in the programming world, then its equivalent to running your own Start Up. In that case financing and business models apply.

Programmers would be equivalent to the drivers that work for the TLC licensed shops (including those that hold medallions). Trust me, if you want to drive, you can, of course you might need to actually get a hack license (which Ironically you don't need to program).

Comment: Re:Insurance and a 1099 (Score 3, Insightful) 312

by powerlord (#47810335) Attached to: Uber Now Blocked All Over Germany

I think its a case of German law makers thinking: If it looks like a taxi, and acts like a taxi, then it should be regulated like a taxi. Can't really fault them on this.

The bigger issue is that Uber, Lyft, etc. are trying to take advantage of the lag between what is available (Hail a taxi via an app), and what the current incumbent do now, by bypassing the current laws. This is admirable from a competition perspective, but not by sacrificing all laws to get there and compete.

Uber is notorious at this point for operating full steam ahead, against regulation, and even court rulings, to get into place. I am not surprised Germany took a dim view of their antics and slapped them.

Some regulations are in place to protect drivers, others are in place to protect passengers. To declare yourself immune to them all is lovely, but its as effective as me declaring myself King of the Internet and demanding all my subjects to send me $5.

Adding "with the help of a mobile app" to the end of your business plan, does not suddenly make a brand new industry and to pretend otherwise is delusional (except to shareholders or venture capitalists).

Comment: Re:In Soviet Maryland (Score 4, Informative) 441

by powerlord (#47807463) Attached to: In Maryland, a Soviet-Style Punishment For a Novelist

Except this is Maryland.

The police there think that being close to the capital has granted them more authority, and the people are wacko, self-entitled over-reactors to start with.

... During the period from 1962 until 1967, Cambridge was a center of Civil Rights Movement protests as blacks sought access to work and housing. They also wanted to end racial segregation of schools and other public facilities. Race-related violence erupted in Cambridge in 1963 and 1967, and forces of the Maryland National Guard were assigned to the city to assist local authorities with peace-keeping efforts.[13] The leader of the radical movement was H. Rap Brown, the Minister of Justice of The Black Panther Party,[14] and local organizer Gloria Richardson.[15] These individuals incited the local community to burn the 2nd Ward area of Cambridge, Maryland which housed most of the African American community. The local population's homes, most of which were destroyed, were rebuilt under a 1969 Public Housing Act by the then Governor, Spiro Agnew and the Federal Government. With the passage of the Civil Rights Act in 1964, public segregation in Cambridge officially ended. ...