Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:We have bigger problems (Score 4, Insightful) 83

by tgeller (#48841277) Attached to: What Africa Really Needs To Fight Ebola
"that's too bad but we have our own corrupt politicians here"

True, but your scale is off by 100x.

How much extra did you have to pay the last time you renewed your driver's license? The last time you took a bus? How much kickback do you pay your boss every week to keep your job? When a loved one is in the hospital, how much does the nurse demand directly from you to make sure they get fed?

Be real here.

Comment: Re:But how to avoid this? (Score 1) 39

by tgeller (#48485461) Attached to: Creative Commons To Pass One Billion Licensed Works In 2015
What you say is true, but it's not the main issue IMHO. Rather, it's that people rip copyrighted materials whole-cloth and post them as CC.

I produce short videos for a client, on a moderate budget. I was using lots of CC and public-domain labeled stuff from and YouTube. Then I realized, "Hey, wait! This TV show from the '50s is *not* public domain! Neither is this educational film from the '70s!"

This is what comes from people misunderstanding the slogan, "Information wants to be free." You get ignoramuses thinking, "Yeah, and I'm the one who'll set [someone else's stuff] free." There's a word for that -- theft. And that's what sadly permeates collections of "CC/PD" content

Comment: What about the Turing Award winners? (Score 4, Interesting) 109

by tgeller (#47942153) Attached to: Microsoft Lays Off 2,100, Axes Silicon Valley Research
Microsoft's Pear Street office across the street houses at least two ACM A.M. Turing Award winners: Leslie Lamport and Chuck Thacker ( I wonder what the company will do with them, if anything....

(I had the honor of interviewing Dr. Lamport when he won: See . Nice guy!)

Comment: Some people *do* pay for jobs, and quite rightly (Score 1, Interesting) 183

by tgeller (#47932107) Attached to: Use of Forced Labor "Systemic" In Malaysian IT Manufacturing
I'm disappointed by the many people (all Americans, as far as I can tell) who post here to say, "fuck no! I'd never be so stupid!!!". This, I think, shows an extremely narrow understanding of the world. Because:

a) America is not the world. There are *many* places where you're expected to pay for your job, in one way or another. Sometimes it's above-board, sometimes not. I don't know about Malaysia, but wouldn't be surprised at all if that was the custom there.

b) Oh, wait, we have this in America, too! I paid LOTS of money to my managing broker when I was a real-estate agent. These are standard fees: Everyone at every agency pays them. And let's not forget the *MINIMUM WAGE* workers forced to pay for their uniforms and so forth.

So stop with the high-and-mighty. You're speaking from ignorance, not strength.

Comment: Could you do it yourself? (Score 4, Informative) 130

by tgeller (#47846287) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Service To Digitize VHS Home Movies?
I converted a few tapes with a a $40 gadget (Diamond One Touch Video Capture VC500MAC) and was happy with the results.

By comparison, the one service I checked out charges $12 each tape, plus shipping etc. -- and takes three weeks!

If you have more than a half dozen tapes to convert, you may do well buying a converter. You could let it run at night, then pay somebody $15/hour to do the finishing work (conversion to ProRes or whatever).

(I realize that this doesn't directly answer your question... but is an option worth considering.)

Comment: I wrote this article, and am available for comment (Score 1) 329

by tgeller (#47751797) Attached to: ACM Blames the PC For Driving Women Away From Computer Science
Wow, how could I have missed this Slashdotting? Nobody tells me nuthin'.

Anyway. I'm the author of this article -- my list of recent work, which includes it, is

I haven't read the comments yet, and am about to (with trepidation).

One quick note: I take exception with the headline. "ACM" didn't blame anybody for anything. Interview subject Valerie Barr "believes the retreat was caused partly by the growth of personal computers". I've asked for it to be changed.

I have hardly ever known a mathematician who was capable of reasoning. -- Plato