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Comment: Its not just illegal snooping thats the problem (Score 4, Interesting) 179

by simonreid (#48101753) Attached to: Eric Schmidt: Anxiety Over US Spying Will "Break the Internet"

Eric is confusing two issues, probably purposefully.

The issue of illegal (at least against US citizens) mass surveillance by the NSA and the like is one problem - but as others have pointed out, its something that should be assumed to always be happening, and doesn't have any real impact on the internet. People make a fuss about it, particularly in the US, but I think most people assumed it was happening anyway and it hasn't really changed the way that people, businesses or governments operate. Just look at the recent Silk Road story as an example

The issue that has everyone jittery is the close cooperation that has been shown between the US Government and US based companies, and from a legal perspective the stance that the US government is taking on data stored by US companies, outside the US, for a non-US entity. This has a huge effect on Google's business in particular, not as an adverting company - I would be surprised if they are loosing a significant amount of their consumer business - but rather their growing enterprise / cloud business. No one outside the US will want to switch to Gmail if their email can be read, without their knowledge, by the US Government issuing a National Security Letter, or even just by any local judge issuing a subpoena.

This is what they are talking about when they say you have to start a data center in Germany just to serve customers there. Its not the NSA hacking your system, or even snooping on the wire people are worried about. Its the legal and risk issue that the US government can seize your data, without any notification, and you have no legal recourse to prevent it happening.

Its a great opportunity for companies in Europe, but if your a US headquartered company, as Google is, its going to break *your* small part of the internet

+ - Apple says many users "bought an Android phone by mistake"

Submitted by mrspoonsi
mrspoonsi (2955715) writes "Apple CEO Tim Cook during his keynote said that around 130 million customers have purchased their first Apple device in the last twelve months states, "Many of these customers were switchers from Android," he said. "They had bought an Android phone by mistake, and then had sought a better experience and a better life." He added that almost half of those who have purchased an iPhone in China since December have switched from Android. However, it is worth noting that iPhones were not actually available in China until December, when pre-orders began, so it is unclear how much of the device's popularity there is simply down to the novelty factor, rather than a burning desire to flee from Android."

Comment: Re:Here's his problem (Score 1) 278

by simonreid (#46880941) Attached to: The Ways Programming Is Hard

At my last programming job, the head of engineering took all my time estimates for a project and arbitrarily cut them in half, because "we're smarter than most companies".

I take all my developers estimates and arbitrarily double them,. In my experience even experienced developers will hit something they didn't forsee, or have requirements changes forced on them.

Comment: Re:Or it could be (Score 1) 158

by simonreid (#46769587) Attached to: Pollution In China Could Be Driving Freak Weather In US
They do pay a lot of money to organizations that question man made climate change yes. But then again, the flip side of that is the tens of billions of dollars that are invested in global warming being real and caused by man. Regardless of scientific merit I have always thought it odd that people think that 'climate deniers' are better funded than the groups supporting the idea.

Comment: Re:Climate change conferences in 2014 (Score 1) 987

by simonreid (#46631931) Attached to: UN Report: Climate Changes Overwhelming
I assume you mean that the pro man-made climate change are the groups that get the funding. You must do because the amount of money spent by just the US Government (around $2B a year on just scientific studies alone, and growing) dwarfs that spent by the energy companies on research.

If you can be bothered here is the GAO Report and a much easier to read summary

Not saying the money isn't well spent, or that man-made climate change isn't happening - but its just plain wrong to say that Big Oil is outspending the poor universities when it comes to climate research.

Comment: Re:There real reason ... (Score 1) 290

The problem is that the media is motivated... to make money. You don't think all those adverts for Coal power on TV, or 'brand' ads about what a great company GE is are just for fun do you? The conversation goes like this 'well... we could spend money to investigate a story slamming a company that spent $50m advertising with us last quarter - or we could not, just re-print their press release about, and still be profitable and employed'. Sure, one or two reports might try to write it, but they would never get on air. You should try listening to the No Agenda show (just google it) for a great description of how it really works

Comment: Re:Killed because of the message (Score 1) 314

Add to that the oil companies paying researchers tons of money to write anything that "disproves" global warming, and the complete lack of peer-reviewed research that disproves global warming probably means that there's not enough support for that position to stand up to any peer review at all.

This always drives me crazy... please show me any study, article or any bit of information that shows that oil companies are paying researchers any more money than companies that have a vested interested in climate change. You can't, because whilst you can find a lot of information on the Koch Brothers Funding Climate Denial, I bet you can't find anything talking about the funding that is provided from companies, institutions and individuals with a vested interested in finding climate change.

Comment: Re:They don't understand the difference (Score 2) 517

by simonreid (#45938383) Attached to: How Weather Influences Global Warming Opinions

They have either a poor understanding or perhaps no concept at all that short term temperature fluctuations are merely data points in a longer term trend

Couldn't agree with you more..... http://www.coyoteblog.com/coyote_blog/2013/12/explaining-the-flaw-in-kevin-drums-and-apparently-science-magazines-climate-chart.html

Comment: Re:So basically... (Score 1) 105

by simonreid (#45146115) Attached to: Snapchat Search Warrants Emphasize Data Vulnerability

Although I agree with you in the case of snap chat, normal people just don't think things through like that. I for one didn't know its not pushed to your phone until you read it.

The other thing is its not just police search warrants you have to look out for.

In many states a lawyer involved in a lawsuit (for example a divorce or child custody hearing) can issue their own subpoena for electronic records *without* law enforcement or the courts reviewing it. In this case its not evidence of a crime... but your ex wife might subpoena snap chat for all images sent to you and suddenly that secret picture your new girlfriend sent isn't so secret, and is being used in court against you. Its not illegal, but its not something you want to share.

Comment: Re:Cryptographically signed elections? (Score 1) 266

by simonreid (#45090547) Attached to: Azerbaijan Election Results Released Before Voting Had Even Started
That assumes all votes are made equal, which they are not. Because of gerrymandering in the US something like 80 or 90% of political offices are not competitive votes, which means that incumbents are always reelected and if you live in one of those districts, your vote basically doesn't count. What it means is that only votes in the primaries count, so you end up loosing the center since the only competitive vote is within your own party.

I have never seen anything fill up a vacuum so fast and still suck. -- Rob Pike, on X.

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