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Comment: Re:This is actually a great deal. (Score 1) 658

by rayharris (#43647795) Attached to: Adobe Creative Suite Going Subscription-Only

I suspect that 90% of the "backlash" will come from people who were pirating the software anyway. These people were not customers to begin with.

As a (now former) Adobe pirate, I was thrilled when Creative Cloud was released. I used "extended trial editions" (as I called them) for school and personal projects, but now I can afford legit copies of everything I use (Photoshop, Illustrator, Premiere Pro, and After Effects primarily) and then some. And I don't have to worry about using them on business projects and getting caught with pirated software.

Comment: Re:Crazy pricing (Score 1) 658

by rayharris (#43647671) Attached to: Adobe Creative Suite Going Subscription-Only

The educational discount gets you everything (Master Collection, not just Photoshop) for $20 per month. So, for $240 per year, both your wife and your son can get the latest Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Fireworks, Flash (and Flash Builder Premium and Game Developer Tools), Premiere Pro, After Effects, Audition (audio editing), and Acrobat Pro.

Yep. Crazy pricing. Pay less, get tons more.

Comment: $50 per month for the Master Collection (Score 5, Informative) 658

by rayharris (#43647515) Attached to: Adobe Creative Suite Going Subscription-Only

It seems there's a lot of confusion as to what the Adobe Creative Cloud is. I currently subscribe to Adobe Creative Cloud at the $50 per month rate. Here's what I get...

Adobe CS6 Master Collection
-- Everything, not just Photoshop
-- Usually around $2600 when purchased as a standalone program
      -- At $50 per month, I could only upgrade every 4 1/3 years
      -- But I get continuous updates
-- I can install ACC on two computers
      -- One can be OSX and the other Windows
      -- You can't do this with purchased apps
-- Apps are installed locally
      -- Don't have to be online to use apps
      -- Unless you're past the current expiration of your subscription
-- Data files are stored locally
      -- Don't have to use cloud storage

Subscription options:
-- $20/month - One Application, No Commitment
-- $20/month - All Applications, Annual Commitment, Students and Teachers (K-12 and College)
-- $50/month - All Applications, Annual Commitment (What I have)
-- $75/month - All Applications, No Commitment

So, while you may still have some qualms about a subscription model, remember not to spread FUD or inaccurate information.

Comment: Wording of License (Score 1) 172

by rayharris (#42821271) Attached to: Researchers Opt To Limit Uses of Open-access Publications

Here's the plain English version of the "No Derivatives" clause of the CC-BY-NC-ND license:

No Derivatives: You may not alter, transform, or build upon this work.

Citations and quotes are covered under fair use, so that's still possible. The problem is that of the three parts of the ND clause, the "build upon" part is the only one that should apply to a scientific paper. Now this clause might be considered too restrictive for something like a photograph or work of fiction for some people, but the "may not alter or transform" parts should almost be automatic for evidence-based, peer-reviewed scientific paper.

I'd recommend that Creative Commons consider adding a slightly less restrictive version of "No Derivatives" and call it something like "No Modifications". It could go something like this:

No Modifications: You may not alter or transform this work except to enable efficient search and retrieval of the work from an automated storage system and for basic reformatting required to display a work in a different medium.

This would allow other researchers to "build upon" the research (what scientific research really is). It would make it clear that storing the paper in a database is fine as long as when the paper is actually displayed, it isn't changed except for possibly formatting (think margins and fonts). The paper could be republished (again with formatting changes) as long as the BY clause (and NC clause, if present) is followed.

This seems to be a good compromise between SA and ND. The NM clause also be used for other types of works. For example, a photo used in a calendar under SA could be cropped and photo-manipulated. Under NM it could be included in the calendar (built upon), but only transformations needed for publication would be allowed such as resizing and changing the resolution. Under ND it couldn't be used in the calendar at all.

I also might suggest a couple other clauses. First: CA - Commercial Available. This would indicate that while the work is released under "No Commercial Use", the author is open to commercial use on a case by case basis. Second: NP - Non Profit. This would indicate that the work could be used in something that would be sold (like the calendar) as long as some portion of the proceeds (say 70%) went to a non-profit organization officially recognized by the appropriate government agency in the organization's legal jurisdiction.

So the levels would be:

Money:
- Any Use
- Non Profit (Optional Commercial Available)
- No Commercial Use (Optional Commercial Available)

Changes:
- Any Change
- No Modifications (can be reformatted and built upon)
- No Derivatives (cannot be reformatted or built upon)

Comment: They've patented math... (Score 3, Informative) 83

If you go read the patent, there are two things to note.

First, is that the patent provides very explicit flow charts that describe the algorithm that generates the summary. All Google and AOL have to do to win is show that they generate their summaries using a different algorithm.

Second, is that the patent is for an algorithm to calculate which section should be shown in a summary. You cannot patent algorithms. The patent shouldn't have been awarded in the first place.

I hate the USPTO and I hold a (hardware) patent.

Comment: Here's how it works... (Score 1) 406

by rayharris (#39580221) Attached to: Self-Sustaining Solar Reactor Creates Clean Hydrogen

Zinc is used as a catalyst to remove hydrogen from water leaving zinc oxide. The heat come from solar radiation.

Zn + H2O + heat --> ZnO + H2

The hydrogen can be used as fuel producing only water:

2*H2 + O2 --> 2*H2O

The zinc oxide is reduced to Zn using heat from solar radiation:

2*ZnO + heat --> 2*Zn + O2

The cycle repeats and the zinc is reused continuously.

Zinc will be needed initially and it will be need to be replenished on occasion, but compared to the world's consumption of zinc (12 million tonnes per year) it's probably quite small.

Remember as well that the pollution produced by the additional production of the zinc will probably be offset by reduced emissions from burning hydrogen instead of gasoline.

All in all, I think they've got a good plan to produce hydrogen in such a way that the environmental impact is minimal and should be greatly offset by reduction in other areas.

Comment: Re:What this is all about (Score 3, Interesting) 183

by rayharris (#39442321) Attached to: Judge Rules Pi-Based Music Is Non-Copyrightable

A book, a song, a program, a widget, hell YOU, can all be represented by a large enough number.

The point is whether there's enough "original creativity" in developing that bignum to warrant protection. Some things should be protected, some should not. We can argue all day about what should be protected, how long that protection should last and what the punishment for violating those protections should be. My answers, even as both a patent and copyright holder, are less, less, and less.

But to argue that simply because something can be represented as just a number means it shouldn't be protected is ridiculous.

Contemptuous lights flashed flashed across the computer's console. -- Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

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