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Comment: This is really about controling the internet (Score 5, Informative) 279

by argoff (#48211713) Attached to: The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

This isn't about sexual harassment, but controlling the internet, and implicitly people in general. A lot of the powers that be have decided that, like other forms of media, they need to sanitize it in the name of control. (even with games, google gamergate) They want a name and an ID behind every post, they want to create "accountability". They gleefully ignore the fact that any woman, gay person, person of color, persecuted minority can take on an anon alias and argue their beliefs, do their work on merit alone. Seriously, how do we even know that Satoshi, the bitcoin creator, isn't a black lesbian? The internet frees productive people from race and gender in a way that before was never even remotely possible.

So maybe, just maybe, the people who want to make it an issue now, are the doing it not because of some high morality, but because they are discovering they can't compete on merit. But the issue is way deeper that that. In today's world, a lot of media and games are controlled via copyright, but copyrights by their very nature require centralized control by those who control them to work. Yet the internet is doing just the opposite, it is moving into the direction of decentralized control, threatening a lot of people, who happen to have a lot of money.

Comment: New frontiers in narcissism (Score 1) 123

How the hell is this considered a "selfie"?

Because this will be its biggest consumer market. Just imagine: I can surround myself with icons of the glorious figure that is me, and they will make great gifts (suitable for worship) for all of my friends and followers as well. And who on this Earth wouldn't be interested in an ultra-realistic 3-D model of what I ate for lunch? You could almost recreate the experience of what it is like to be me, looking at my lunch.

Comment: Re:zomg singularity! (Score 1) 92

by drooling-dog (#48211411) Attached to: Machine Learning Expert Michael Jordan On the Delusions of Big Data

It's not just regulation and consumer acceptance that limits the pace of technological change: it's also the need to amortize development costs over shorter and shorter product lifecycles (before being leapfrogged by competition). Does this imply that technology-driven markets will increasingly become "natural monopolies"? Not because of patent laws as we all fear, but because a monopolistic company can set the pace of innovation in its market such that a desired minimum ROI is achieved.

Comment: Re:hasn't stopped him yet (Score 1) 38

by swillden (#48209609) Attached to: Google Leads $542m Funding Round For Augmented Reality Wearables Company

so where was his "strong anti-authoritarian and anti-military streak" when he was rolling over for the NSA **for years**...

That never happened. The NSA tapped Google's fiber without Google's knowledge, but there's no evidence that Google ever willingly participated. As soon as Google found out about the taps, it accelerated a program to get the data on all those fibers encrypted, to lock the NSA out.

Google invades privacy for profit and for decades gave the NSA (and god knows who else) an unaccountable back door to all our data

Google trades the right to target ads to you in exchange for services, and enables you to opt out of the trade if you want, even providing the necessary tools for you to do it. Google has never given the NSA an "unaccountable back door". See David Drummond's numerous public statements on this issue. From my personal perspective as a Google security engineer, I think it would be virtually impossible for such a back door to exist in Google's systems without my having noticed some trace of it. Take that as you will.

You're coming to this question with a whole bunch of inaccurate assumptions, which are seriously skewing your perspective. You should take a breath, look into what really happened (as much as is public information anyway) vis a vis the NSA, PRISM, etc., and then re-evaluate.

Or not, that's your choice. I'll merely point out that time will prove me right with respect to any purported military-focused work by Google X and leave it there.

Comment: Re:Politics (Score 1) 375

by quantaman (#48204211) Attached to: Ebola Does Not Require an "Ebola Czar," Nor Calling Up the National Guard

If having a Czar will concentrate more power in their hands then a Czar is what they'll create. We already have the CDC. If this were about solving disease problems then the President would give the CDC more funding if they needed it. This is not about solving problems but about power.

Isn't that the job of congress?

Besides, creating a Czar isn't about concentrating power, it's about appearing pro-active. If anyone asks what they're doing to fight Ebola they can say "hey, we're taking it so seriously we created a special position just to oversee the response!"

Comment: Re:and so? (Score 1) 38

by swillden (#48203575) Attached to: Google Leads $542m Funding Round For Augmented Reality Wearables Company

why dont you explain? if it is lol funny then you should be able to say why

Sergey Brin, director of X projects at Google and co-founder of the company, has a strong anti-authoritarian and anti-military streak. The idea that he'd invest himself so deeply into a project focused on military applications is laugh-out-loud funny.

Comment: Re:I'm betting on balloons (Score 4, Informative) 96

by swillden (#48201627) Attached to: Internet Broadband Through High-altitude Drones

Have you ever seen a hurricane or a tropical storm? It means the Internet will be down during these critical events when it is often most needed. That is the reason they are talking about 13 miles altitude drones and not just zeppelins. The altitude record for a zeppelin is 7.6 km or 4.7 miles. Large hurricanes can reach an altitude of 50 000 feet or 9.5 miles or 15.25 km. Zeppelins couldn't clear a large hurricane.

The balloons Google is experimenting with do reach the stratosphere. 20 km altitude.

Comment: Re:Where is the NFC 2-factor? (Score 1) 119

by swillden (#48201227) Attached to: Google Adds USB Security Keys To 2-Factor Authentication Options

The ownership thing can be mildly obnoxious. It's fairly standard practice at Google to click the checkbox to allow all attendees to edit a meeting. Even without that, though, it's always possible to make the change on your own copy; no one else will see the change if they look, but you can add someone (or a room), and the meeting will be added to the appropriate person/room calendar. Maybe Google Calendar works a little differently externally... I wouldn't think that part would be different.

Doesn't the Chromebox offer you the ability to type in a meeting name? That's another option on the internal system. We just go to the other room and manually enter the meeting name. Actually this was a problem a couple of years ago, but refreshes have gotten fast enough I haven't had to do that for a while, except when no one added a Hangout to begin with and we just have to make one up on the fly. Then we pick a name send it to everyone via chat or whatever, and type it into the room controller.

As for getting the other room booked, that's easy. Just make a calendar appointment and put the room on it. Fast.

Comment: Re:I never ever commented on the SCO issue in any (Score 1) 187

We knew what was going on when you ran your anti-IBM campaign, sometimes even positioning yourself as arguing on behalf of our community. It was a way to lend credence to IBM and MS arguments during the SCO issue. To state otherwise is deceptive, perhaps even self-deceptive.

Florian, you would not be devoting all of this text to explaining yourself if you didn't feel the need to paint your actions in a positive light. That comes from guilt, whether you admit it to yourself or not.

Go write your app, and if you actually get to make any money with it you can give thanks, because it will happen despite what you worked for previously. Keep a low profile otherwise because your credibility is well and truly blown and you can only make things worse. And maybe someday you can really move past this part of your life. But I am not holding out much hope.

"Life, loathe it or ignore it, you can't like it." -- Marvin the paranoid android