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Comment Law is human interaction (Score 1) 287

I've worked as a programmer and as a contracts lawyer. I can safely say that automation of the programming job is an easier thing that automation of the legal job.

To do contracts you have to gather information and negotiate with the other side. These things are about human interaction. Reaching agreement is a negotiation - it requires interpersonal skills, a good understanding of your client's priorities, and those of the people on the other side. It's very hard to automate.

Now - there is some high street type legal work that's essentially a question of identifying the correct template and filling in the blanks, but that's only a small part of legal practice.

Comment Re:Primer version anyone (Score 1) 314

You have a laptop running windows 10. The hdd is encrypted with bitlocker. MS have a copy of the recovery key.

That means that, in theory, MS and anyone they're prepared to share the key with can decrypt the contents of your HDD.

Presumably there was a reason that you encrypted your hdd in the first place, so there at least some people that you don't want to be able to decrypt it (otherwise encrypting it was a waste of time).

One difficulty is that you can't know for sure who really can get hold of that recovery key - some MS employee being blackmailed by a third party, for example.

Now on a practical level using Windows 10 and bitlocker, even given all of the above, is better than not encrypting at all. In the case of losing your laptop, with sensitive work materials on it ( a reason why many people encrypt HDDs) it's unlikely that whoever finds your laptop will be able to get hold of the recovery key from MS.

Comment Re:Is it just me ... (Score 1) 171

Any company with international interests will care very much what other western nations (if not Tajikistan) think. If a court in (say) England rules that something is owned by someone other than the US company then it could be a huge problem for that company. Multinational companies ignore the rulings of courts in any country where they hope to do business or have assets at their peril.

Comment Software engineering, not maths or physics. (Score 1) 1067

Arguments from mathematical or physical theories or axioms miss the point.

When writing code we need to understand how our code will behave over it's possible inputs. There's nothing inherently wrong with deciding that in a particular bit of code you're going to ensure that "dividing" by 0 gives you 0 (for example), as long as you know what the consequences are for the behaviour of the programs relying on this.

The reason mathematicians get upset by this is that this is not what is normally understood by division. Division by zero isn't defined. Whatever we do in our programs isn't going to change that

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