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Comment Re:Surprised? (Score 1) 529

afaik, Apple has zero examples of software that phones home. A few of their products do or did collaborate over the network to enforce licensing restrictions. (Server and ARD are good examples, enterprise software)

It does get pesky about wanting to run software updates, but that can be completey turned off and stays off. There are a few software titles that will still check for new versions when launched though, (iTunes and Configurator) that cannot be turned off. That has to do with them being a bit manic about keeping their iOS devices updated. (since a security problem on them is a bit more of a problem)

But nothing that I know of that just spontaneously transmits data out your LAN. I may not be aware of something, if anyone knows of such a beaste, please chime in because I'd like to know about it too.

Comment Re:Because there was no other way? (Score 1) 301

"because there was no other way" is arguably the worst excuse for violating someone's rights.

"You were doing something, we didn't like it, and this was the best response we could think up. And so that's our justification for doing what we did. We did it because it was the only way we could find that got results."

Comment Re:Hmmm (Score 5, Insightful) 251

If this theoretically passed and you buy a cellphone from another state or country but use it on a plan in California, and the phone doesn't support decryption, would that work?

"The law would apply to phones sold in California beginning Jan. 1, 2017"

So, that'd be OK. They don't block possession, use, or carrier registration, just sales by vendors that are located in the state. This may also prevent mail-order purchase from the Apple Store in say, Michigan, because Apple has a "business presence" in California. (collection of sales tax usually works that way) OTOH if you get one off ebay from someone whose store is outside CA, you're fine.

I'd personally like to see Apple very publicly give the finger to the CA legislature and make it extremely clear in very blunt terms that iPhones not being for sale there is the direct and exclusive result of the residents of the state electing retards and shills to make their laws. Losing CA for a year or two won't hurt them much, and will pay off big in the long run for future sales in CA as the voters stomp to the polls to vote with their iphones.

This isn't like most of the "extreme" legislation they pass on things like emissions, product safety, and other consumer protection. The public gets NO direct or clear benefit from this legislation, and results in a noticeable impact to a huge portion of the voters in the state. The legislature will try to justify it of course, but there just isn't enough spin available to keep that top from falling on its face.

Comment Re:Consent (Score 1) 36

it doesn't look like surgery was involved. Just padding and velcro?

Awesome work though. But Derby still seems to lack lateral control, the attachments don't seem to anchor well laterally so he walks with a lot of sway. (and I didn't see any videos of him running with them)

Gotta wonder how abrastive (painful?) that is on his stubs, that weren't designed to take his weight and force in that way.

Comment this is actually a good first step (Score 1) 150

There are three problems here all working at once:
1. it's legal (marginally)
2. its very profitable
3. it's difficult to catch
4. although the public hates it, most of them continue to facillitate it anyway

You won't see any serious progress until you scratch off at least two items off that list. Honestly, #4 isn't likely to go away ever simply because as another poster roughly put it, there are enough stupid or fanatical people out there to keep them in business even if you try to "vote with your wallet". It just doesn't work in a limited edition, fan-based market. If the scalpers can manage to sell even just half the tickets they bought, for four times the price they paid, they're totally ok with that.

So going after #1 is currently the "low hanging fruit" and is the logical first step, to get the law's assistance. As the number of problems get taken care of, the remaining problems become a much more powerful point of leverage. So despite all the people grousing about how "this doesn't solve the problem!", yeah, we know that. But you've got to start somewhere, there is no one-step miracle cure.

Comment YES, gps coords CAN be stored efficiently (Score 1) 393

Except that GPS coordinates require 16 digits, 2 characters (+/-/N/S/E/W), 2 decimal points, space and comma, to specify a location of the size of a housing block," writes Filloux.

I hope you don't have a title in front of your name (other than maybe "head idiot") because otherwise you're gonna need to lose it. Telling us we have to store and send GPS coordinates in human readable format is beyond laughable. It's like needing to call the library and have them fax you a page from a book because there's no better alternative.

I recently had to write software for an Arduino that interacts with a GPS and needs to track many waypoints. Anyone that works with those knows memory is extremely tight, and onboard eeprom is even worse. (most units have 1024 bytes TOTAL eeprom to use for powered-off storage) I also needed to store with good precision, at least as good as the GPS, which is substantially better than a city block. The format I settled on is total number of centiseconds. That fit the longigute and latitude into a pair of 32 bit unsigned longs, and had precision measured in centimeters. (varies on location)

But then I suppose you're trying to store that string data in unicode too, huh? "Dr."? God help us.

Comment Re:Should've used protection. (Score 1) 503

The vast majority of science agrees that people can neither detect nor be physically affected by EMI. That being said, if a person BELIEVES they can be and are being affected by it, their mind can create a physical response in their bodies. This needs to be handled like any other mental illness. There's no need to test for this any further, it's been done many times, and the result is almost alway that they are sensitive to blinking lights. (ie the belief that there is EMI)

If a person firmly believes that there are worms in their head and they need to dig them out, and nothing you do can change their mind, you either have to get them some psychiatric trreatment or wait for them to dig their eardrums out with a spoon.

So yes, in a roundabouts sort of way, the mother might be correct. Her daughter may have indeed committed suicide as a result of her "wifi allergy". But it had nothing to actually do with the EMR being produced by the transmitter. She believed she was being affected, and so her body manifested symptoms in response to her psychological reaction. At that point I'd be redirecting the blame to the parent for not getting their kid the mental health treatment she obviously was needing.

Comment Re:Discussed before (Score 1) 299

DV cameras were the one and only practical consumer application of firewire,

For years, firewire buried usb in terms of hard drive transfer speeds. (solid 800mbps vs laggy 480mbps) But it was during this time that PC motherboard manufacturers stubbornly refused to put firewire ports on their boards. Also during this time, it was difficult to impossible to boot a windows computer from an external drive. These factors led to almost a decade of time where the macs were the only computers that commonly used high performing external storage. (and not just for video) The windows users literally didn't know what they were missing, and most remained blissfully unaware. A few I know installed firewire cards and talked to me like they'd just discovered this amazing hidden technology that nobody else knew about.

Processor and controller advances (both in the computer and in the external drive controllers) during this time slowly removed the lag, and I suspect that's why it took so long to get USB3 out the door, they just weren't in enough of a rush to innovate. There was no push from the consumer side, and no one wanted to be the first to add FW as a standard option. The benchmarks I ran as early as 2012 were still running into slow controllers. There were a specific set of common speeds, determined by which chipset the manufacturer happened to be using. Speeds were now usually either 26 or 36 MB/sec, although there were a small number of them running at 39 and unbelievably still at 18. During this entire time, firewire 400 has been running at a consistent 39MB/sec, (fw800 at 79MB/sec!) and at the end there was about a 50/50 split between 36 and 39MB/sec on new USB adapters.

So then USB3 is announced and the world is buzzing. So I asked, "If you wanted higher speeds why didn't you just get firewire?" "Firewire? What's that?" "Nevermind...." But by the time USB3 came out, thunderbolt was hitting the stage to be the new usb dominator. USB seems to be doomed to be a generation behind. For the first year and a half it was almost impossible to find a USB3 drive that actually performed at speeds substantially faster than firewire 800, because most of them were trying to keep costs down after changing to USB3 by using slower hard drives. 90 and 130MB/sec HDDs were the norm in most of the early USB3 enclosures, but hey, they got to stamp "USB3!!!" all over the box and get the suckers to buy them without reading the fine print. The enclosures that had actual fast drives in them were more expensive and so were mostly overlooked. We had to endure years of "USB3 speed" flash drives that were below USB2's maximum speeds for exactly the same reason. The "premium high speed" flash drives cost 2-3x as much, and while they read faster, they still had slower write speeds.

There's just a large chunk of the demographic that wasn't seeing the faster alternatives. But at this point the storage, even though it's much faster, has been surpassed finally by the interface. I have a Lacie 500gb ssd with dual USB3/TB interface, and both of them top out at the same speed of 438MB/sec, which appears to be the SSD's maximum speed. I'd need to have an SSD raid with fiber-channel grade speeds to do a comparison now, which I don't have. So for now, for me at least, they're effectively the same. The speed of home-grade networking (gigabit ethernet) has become the bottleneck now, but this time it's affecting us all equally. (438MB/sec requires about a 4gbps connection to properly saturate, even dual-link gig ethernet just isn't up to the task)

Comment Re:Well thats odd (Score 1) 114

Everyone whinges about Uber undermining the taxi monopoly ... the reality is, Uber is pretty much ignoring laws around proper licensing, insurance, background checks, and anything else.

The biggest (and arguably most legitimate) excuse I see given is simply that the laws were written not to serve the public good, but to reinforce the monopoly the local cabl companies have, and has in many cases lead to a profound drop in service without the expected drop in cost that you find in a free market.

It's well-established that most successful companies exploit any advantage they can, so it's not the least bit surprising that they lower quality of service to cut costs because it has no net impact on their revenue, which can only serve to increase proffits. This only encourages a drop in quality of service, relative to cost.

In SOME respects I can understand why there are laws that encourage the monopolies. There are certain markets where competition can lead to a drop in average quality due to redundant overhead, such as power companies. I can also see where this could apply to some extend to cab service, in specific (usually small) cities. Some businesses you need to maintain a certain minimim customer base so you can do things on a profitable scale. But there's no reason for that in a big city like London.

Comment "compliance" ? (Score 1) 291

so that communications providers can once again comply with court orders.

If the court order demands you produce the data, and it's physically impossible for you to do it, that's not non-compliance. That's "hey retards, you DO realize you just demanded we do the impossible, go take a hike!".

There's absolutely nothing wrong (or unexpected) to do with refusing to do the impossible. Quit twisting words, the internet's pretty good at seeing through that crap.

I find it entirely gratifying to see companies that in the past have been getitng forced to cooperate with the government ignoring the people's rights finally being able to tell the criminals wearing the badges to get lost, without risk of arrest or prossicution.

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