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Comment: Re:1. perform a song (Score 1) 398

by sugarman (#26530147) Attached to: 17,000 Downloads Does Not Equal 17,000 Lost Sales

> probably for books and movies too

I don't think this will apply to books. How many book-related 'special fan material' do you have? To how many book concerts did you go this year?

This is exactly the problem facing publsihing (and authors) today. While music can get by on concert revenues, what happens to the writers?

While there is some small market for ancilary material for books, is that enough to support an author? Printed works will still be made but they may either be similar to academic work (the funds made from the book are negligible, but they increase status and recognition within their community, increasing the likelihood of academic positions, conference attendance, speaking engagements, or consulting work).

The same may go for tech books as well, though I am not privy to the economics of it, having MS or IBM or Google subsidize the production of the tome to have [author of {blank}] at the company may be of some interest. (Well, maybe a smaller company than those, but the point remains).

I'm not currently seeing a way out for fiction authors at the moment though. Any ideas?

Comment: Unlikely (Score 0, Redundant) 508

by sugarman (#26344819) Attached to: Are My Ideas Being Stolen? If So, What Then?

If you "just got started taking Computer Science classes", I'd say its relatively unlikely that you need to be worried about IP theft. Your implementation of 'Hello World' probably isn't going to revolutionize computing.

This doesn't mean that it isn't something to be aware of in the future, especially as you get closer to your senior project or grad school work. Right now however, you probably should be more concerned with other classmates, depending on how draconian your school is with regards to similar / identical code beding submitted for projects. Learn what your institution's policy is, and you'll likely find the answer to your original question as well.

Comment: Re:Minmaxing ftw! (Score 2, Funny) 286

by sugarman (#26329931) Attached to: The Perils of Simplifying Risk To a Single Number

Now why did anyone think this would be different when real money is involved, and thus the incentive to abuse the rules way higher?

Perhaps because those in the "roleplayer" and "policy wonk" sets have almost no-overlap?

While I'm all for using simulations in systems work, thinking the econ crisis is similar to the time your party killed an Ancient Red Dragon and then bought Greyhawk with the loot probably isn't too helpful.

Networking

+ - SPAM: Study derides feds telework efforts: $13.9B hole

Submitted by
coondoggie
coondoggie writes "If all the government's eligible teleworkers worked from home, the Federal government could save $13.9 billion in commuting costs annually and eliminate 21.5 billion pounds of pollutants from the environment each year. The "Telework Eligibility Profile: Feds Fit the Bill" study is based on a survey of 664 Federal employees found that of those respondents, 96% of them should be teleworking, yet only 20% do. In fact, the Federal government telework deficit is equivalent to the gross domestic product of Jamaica, the study said. To offset the amount of CO2 emissions Feds disperse in the environment by commuting, we would need to plant 32 million trees a year... [spam URL stripped]"
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+ - The List of Obsolete Technical Skills 3

Submitted by
Ponca City, We Love You
Ponca City, We Love You writes "Robert Scoble had an interesting post on his blog a few days ago on obsolete technical skills — "things we used to know that no longer are very useful to us." Scoble's initial list included dialing a rotary phone, using carbon paper to make copies, and changing the gas mixture on your car's carburetor. The list has now been expanded into a wiki with a much larger list of these obsolete skills that includes resolving IRQ conflicts on a mother board, assembly language programming, and stacking a quarter on an arcade game to indicate you have next. "Feel free to contribute more if you can, and if you have the time, please make a page with a short description of the skill," writes Brad Kellett."
Privacy

Journal: How to Convince Non-IT Friends that Privacy Matters?

Journal by mmtux

As technology becomes more advanced I am more and more worried about my privacy in all aspects of my life. Unfortunately, whenever I attempt to discuss the matter with my friends, they show little understanding and write me off as a hyper-neurotic IT student. They say they simply don't care that the data they share on social networks may be accessible by others, that some laws passed by governments today might be privacy infringing and dangerous or that they shouldn't use on-line banking with

Biotech

+ - Natural Selection Can Act on Human Culture 1

Submitted by
Hugh Pickens
Hugh Pickens writes "Scientists at Stanford University have shown for the first time that the process of natural selection can act on human cultures as well as on genes. The team studied reports of canoe designs from 11 Oceanic island cultures evaluating 96 functional features that could contribute to the seaworthiness of the canoes and thus have a bearing on fishing success or survival during migration or warfare. Statistical test results showed clearly that the functional canoe design elements changed more slowly over time, indicating that natural selection could be weeding out inferior new designs. Authors of the study said their results speak directly to urgent social and environmental problems. "People have learned how to avoid natural selection in the short term through unsustainable approaches such as inequity and excess consumption. But this is not going to work in the long term," said Deborah S. Rogers, a research fellow at Stanford. "We need to begin aligning our culture with the powerful forces of nature and natural selection instead of against them. If the leadership necessary to undertake critically needed cultural evolution in these areas can't be found, our civilization may find itself weeded out by natural selection, just like a bad canoe design.""
Transportation

+ - Prius gets 100 mpg with Battery-Range Extender

Submitted by
Ponca City, We Love You
Ponca City, We Love You writes "For $12,500, OEMtek says it can add a battery-range extender to your Prius and double its mileage to 100 mpg or more. The change involves installing a 200-pound pack of lithium-phosphate batteries with six times greater energy storage (pdf) than the Prius' original hybrid battery, which remains in place; software; a dashboard read-out; and a 110-volt outlet. Company literature claims "you can drive 100+ MPG." OEMtek says its converted Prius will be capable of 30 miles of all-electric driving, and that it has achieved 147 mpg in city driving and 102 mpg on the highway. Both Toyota and General Motors have said they're working on plug-in hybrid cars, aiming to put them on the road around 2010 or 2011 but Cindi Choi, vice president of business development for OEMtek, doesn't see this as a short window of opportunity to convert Prius models. "There have been over 1 million Priuses sold globally. That's a large market in itself," says Choi."
Education

+ - SPAM: A map showing human impact on oceans

Submitted by
Roland Piquepaille
Roland Piquepaille writes "According to Scientific American and other publications, U.S. scientists from various universities, NGOs, and government agencies have built a world map of the human damages to the oceans. They've overlayed maps of 17 different activities such as fishing, climate change and pollution to produce this world atlas. They've concluded that about 41% of the world's oceans are heavily affected by human activities. Not surprisingly, the areas which remain relatively little affected are near the poles. Now, the researchers hope that their maps will contribute to global efforts to allocate conservation resources. But read more for additional details and references."

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