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Comment: Re:I think the NY Times is wrong (Score 1) 129

by swillden (#48685221) Attached to: Google and Apple Weaseling Out of "Do Not Track"

Oops, I forgot to include the disclosure/disclaimer: I work for Google, but I don't speak for Google. They pay me to write code, not comment on privacy issues, and in fact they discourage me from making public comments about such things (though they stop short of telling me I can't, in most cases).

Comment: I think the NY Times is wrong (Score 1) 129

by swillden (#48685179) Attached to: Google and Apple Weaseling Out of "Do Not Track"

Looking at the actual text of the W3C doc, I think the author of the Times article got it wrong. The language defining "first party" does allow for multiple first parties on a page, but evaluation of "first partiness" is on an interaction-by-interaction basis. The idea is that if the user visiting slashdot, which happens to host Google ads, is actually intending to interact with Google on the slashdot page, then Google is a first party and can track the user. But clearly the user is not intending to interact with Google in that case, so Google could not track a user who had requested no tracking, and would have no advantage over smaller ad networks.

The exception would be if slashdot started putting Google+ "+1" or Facebook "Like" buttons on its articles. Then, by my reading of the text, the button provider would be allowed to track users who clicked on the relevant button. This would be an advantage over smaller ad networks, but it's one that already exists.

The terminology section of the doc makes all of this pretty clear, IMO.

A network interaction is a single HTTP request and its corresponding response(s): zero or more interim (1xx) responses and a single final (2xx-5xx) response.

A user action is a deliberate action by the user, via configuration, invocation, or selection, to initiate a network interaction. Selection of a link, submission of a form, and reloading a page are examples of user actions. User activity is any set of such user actions.

A party is a natural person, a legal entity, or a set of legal entities that share common owner(s), common controller(s), and a group identity that is easily discoverable by a user. Common branding or providing a list of affiliates that is available via a link from a resource where a party describes DNT practices are examples of ways to provide this discoverability.

With respect to a given user action, a first party is a party with which the user intends to interact, via one or more network interactions, as a result of making that action. Merely hovering over, muting, pausing, or closing a given piece of content does not constitute a user's intent to interact with another party.

In some cases, a resource on the Web will be jointly controlled by two or more distinct parties. Each of those parties is considered a first party if a user would reasonably expect to communicate with all of them when accessing that resource. For example, prominent co-branding on the resource might lead a user to expect that multiple parties are responsible for the content or functionality.

For any data collected as a result of one or more network interactions resulting from a user's action, a third party is any party other than that user, a first party for that user action, or a service provider acting on behalf of either that user or that first party.

A party collects data received in a network interaction if that data remains within the party’s control after the network interaction is complete.

A party uses data if the party processes the data for any purpose other than storage or merely forwarding it to another party.

A party shares data if it transfers or provides a copy of that data to any other party.

Comment: Re:Voicemail evolution (Score 1) 234

by swillden (#48674093) Attached to: The Slow Death of Voice Mail

You obviously don't work with customers.

I do, actually. Well, they're more partners than customers, since we give them our code and they sell it. But, yes, I have a lot of meetings with outside parties. We convince about half of them to join our Hangouts from their laptops, the others we add to the meeting via phone. Outside of meetings, we communicate entirely via e-mail. Voicemail is still irrelevant.

At IBM, my role was entirely customer-facing. Voicemail was still fairly rare, though teleconferences were the norm. Most communication was, again, via e-mail or face to face.

Comment: Re:Voicemail evolution (Score 1) 234

by swillden (#48666989) Attached to: The Slow Death of Voice Mail

At work, my extension is tied into my email. When someone leaves me a message, it's sent as a wav file to my email, and I can listen to it from my mobile device.

Where I work (Google), telephone calls are all but dead and voicemail is completely dead. Pretty much everyone lists their personal mobile number as their phone number in the directory (or a Google Voice number that forwards to their mobile), because getting business calls at home or whatever is a non-issue because no one makes phone calls for business. Communication is via e-mail (for formal communications, messages that don't seek quick response, or group distribution), instant message (for short, timely discussions) or face to face/video conference (Google Hangout). Some groups, especially SREs (Site Reliability Engineers -- sysadmins, more or less), also use IRC, mostly because it stays up when other stuff breaks.

Further, the etiquette is that nearly all non-email communication starts with an instant message. This is true even if the other party is sitting right next to you, unless you can tell by looking that they aren't deeply focused on something. There are only two times a phone is used, one rare, the other extraordinarily rare, and in neither case would voicemail even be useful.

The rare case is for a (generally informal) meeting when one party for some reason doesn't have access to Hangouts. The extraordinarily rare case is when something is on fire and someone's attention is needed at 2 AM Sunday morning. The latter has never happened to me, though I have called a couple of colleagues. Even then, a phone call is an unusual step; normally you wake people up via the pager system (whose messages are delivered via various means, sometimes including automated phone calls) and proceed to communicate via IM or VC.

It's not just Google, either. Prior to Google I worked at IBM which where communication similarly revolved primarily around IM and e-mail, though meetings were primarily via teleconference, not video conference.

From what I can see, voice is generally declining, and voicemail is leading the charge.

Comment: Re:Does the job still get done? (Score 1) 679

by swillden (#48624819) Attached to: Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

I used the phrase "thinkers", not "elites". Those groups I "give credit" to are huge. I don't hesitate for a moment that there are members of those groups who have the intelligence at hand and the foresight to see where things are going and to prepare for them. Lumping everyone in those groups as either/or doesn't make sense.

Regardless, you still give them way, way too much credit.

Comment: Re:Does the job still get done? (Score 3, Insightful) 679

by swillden (#48619251) Attached to: Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

he "thinkers" in govt, business and academia know this. The increasing militarization of the police, the complete disregard for the Constitution, the NSA monitoring everything, etc is getting ready for this.

You give the elites credit for way, way too much foresight, organization and discipline.

Comment: Re:this is something Google does a bit better (Score 1) 604

by swillden (#48606955) Attached to: Waze Causing Anger Among LA Residents

There is a place in the Dalles, Oregon where Google maps will try to make you take a left through a guard rail and off a 30ft tall retaining wall. To be fair the street does continue down there.

Have you submitted a correction?

If not, please post a link to the location, so I can.

Comment: Re:A step too far? (Score 1) 191

by swillden (#48604543) Attached to: Spanish Media Group Wants Gov't Help To Keep Google News In Spain

By what realistic measure did AEDE expect Google to pay, when it outright stated that it'd shut down in Germany before paying? Did they expect Spain to be different?

Basically, yes, they thought that Spain would be different.

I think their assumption was that the Germans were a bunch of savages squatting in the ruins of a civilization that could safely be ignored, but that SPAIN! was still the center of civilized culture in the world, and therefore the rules were different.

I think they thought that Spain would be different because surely Google couldn't refuse to show snippets for all Spanish publishers. They assumed the German ruling didn't have the same clout because obviously many publishers would opt out.

Alternatively, I've seen it suggested that the Spanish knew exactly what would happen, and it's what they wanted. Or, more precisely, it's what the big, influential publishers wanted, because their size allows them to attract more visitors directly to their home pages, at the expense of smaller publishers. Another Slashdot poster claimed that it was political horse trading between big news organizations who are pro-government and the government to shut out smaller (and anti-government) news organizations, with an understanding that if the change hurt the big orgs too badly, the government would funnel cash to them to prop them up.

I don't know anything about Spanish politics, but those possibilities seem believable, and perhaps more believable than that Spanish lawmakers didn't believe Google would just shut down Google News in Spain.

Comment: Re:A step too far? (Score 1) 191

by swillden (#48596857) Attached to: Spanish Media Group Wants Gov't Help To Keep Google News In Spain

Spanish legislation went further than the German ones - The German court decision merely gave the right to charge, but per the article the Spanish one mandated charging.

Keep in mind that wasn't an accidental difference. In Germany, the publishers that opted out of the scheme (and kept their presence in Google News) benefited from absence of those who didn't opt out, which created a motive for all publishers to opt out in a sort of tragedy of the commons situation. The Spanish lawmakers wanted to prevent that.

Comment: Re:Similar to Affirmative Action - a white man (Score 1) 307

And the other half of this is that students who not only have the pre-requisites but have already learned the course material should be able to test out. Perhaps required to test out, because cocky young know-it-alls can be distracting, and perhaps intimidating, to the rest of the class.

"It's when they say 2 + 2 = 5 that I begin to argue." -- Eric Pepke

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