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Submission + - Man ordered At Gunpoint To Hand Over Phone ( 1

HungryHobo writes:

Miami Beach police did their best to destroy a citizen video that shows them shooting a man to death in a hail of bullets Memorial Day. First, police pointed their guns at the man who shot the video, according to a Miami Herald interview with the videographer. Then they ordered the man and his girlfriend out the car and threw them down to the ground, yelling “you want to be fucking paparazzi?” Then they snatched the cell phone from his hand and slammed it to the ground before stomping on it. Then they placed the smashed phone in the videographer's back pocket as he was laying down on the ground.


Submission + - Grimmelman on Google Books Summit Fairness Hearing (

somanyrobots writes: James Grimmelman's report from the Google Books Summit fairness hearing:

I was at the courthouse from 8:30 onwards, with the team of New York Law School students who’ve been working on the Public Index. We didn’t want to take any chances that we might not make it in. (Last time, we were among the very last people seated.) No worries there; we got great seats in the overflow room, and in the afternoon, in the courtroom itself. I’m very glad I had the student team along with me. Their observations and insights about the arguments and the lawyers were invaluable in helping me write up this post. Other than my conversation with them, I’ve avoided reading the press coverage; I wanted to provide a direct account of how I saw the day’s events, without being influenced by others’ takes.


Submission + - Viacom Wants Industry Wide Copyright Filter (

slashqwerty writes: Unsatisfied with the proprietary copyright filter Google recently unveiled, Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman has called for an industry standard to filter copyrighted material. Mr. Dauman has the backing of Microsoft, Disney, and Universal. "They reflect the fact that there ought to be a filtering system in place on the part of technology companies," he noted. "Most responsible companies have followed that path. What no one wants is a proprietary system that benefits one company. It is a big drain to a company like ours to have to deal with incompatible systems." How would an industry standard impact freedom of speech and in particular censorship on the internet? How would it affect small, independent web sites?

Feed Engadget: Robo-surgeon to peform zero-G surgery (

Filed under: Robots

Combining zero gravity with robots performing surgery probably isn't the average person's idea of a fun time, but that's what scientists envisage as the future of the robo-surgery sphere. A NASA C-9 transport aircraft in a 34,000 feet dive towards New Mexico is to be the base for this test, which will compare a prototype robot's ability to cut and stitch with that of a human. Researchers from SRI International and the University of Cincinnati will make the judgment, although it's unclear what exactly the two competitors will be working on. To top things off, the robot surgeon in the sky will be remotely controlled from the ground: to that we can only say, "show offs."

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Feed Techdirt: Prisoners Figure Copyright Abuse Is A Way To Get Out Of Jail (

Well, we've seen all kinds of companies abuse copyright law for a variety of purposes, and it seemed only a matter of time until outright criminals caught on as well. A group of inmates apparently copyrighted their names and then demanded millions of dollars from the prison they were in for using their names without permission. The claims were sent to the warden of the prison and when he didn't pay up, the prisoners were able to file claims against his property -- and then hired someone to seize the warden's property and freeze his bank accounts. At this point they then demanded to be released from prison before they would return the property. Instead, they were charged with extortion and "conspiring to impede the duties of federal prison officials." While the story is amusing, it does show how copyright law is being perceived these days. As intellectual property lawyers push more and more ridiculous positions concerning copyright law, people are beginning to realize that it can be used as a hammer for all kinds of ridiculous lawsuits that have absolutely nothing to do with creating incentives for the creation of new content.

Submission + - Northrup Grumman Buys Scaled Composites

Sam Allen writes: It appears that Scaled Composites' new SpaceShipTwo design is so well regarded by Northrop Grumman that it decided to buy 100 percent of the company. Does this mean that Northrop Grumman will put more capital behind the venture to make public space flight happen sooner, or is it merely performing a CYA maneuveur? Burt Rutan has a vision and I doubt that he would sell out unless it would make that vision happen quicker.

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