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Comment: Come See The Mighty Amazon In Full Retreat! (Score 4, Informative) 331

by westlake (#49358365) Attached to: Amazon Requires Non-Compete Agreements.. For Warehouse Workers
Well, that didn't take long:

Amazon is to remove a ''non-compete'' clause from its employment contracts for US workers paid by the hour after criticism that it is unreasonable to prevent such employees from finding other work.
A company spokeswoman confirmed to the Guardian that the clause would be cut.
''That clause hasn't been applied to hourly associates, and we're removing it,' 'she said.
The company would not disclose the breakdown of its staff by geography or hourly pay and salary. No UK employment contracts for hourly workers contained such non-compete clauses.

Amazon further required laid-off employees to reaffirm their non-compete contracts in order to receive severance, reported the Verge.

Amazon to remove non-compete clause from contracts for hourly workers

Comment: Re:I hate not being culture (Score 1) 236

Just let the free market decide what we want self sustaining art to be

Not all of the arts are or ever have been self-sustaining. Historically, what you see is sponsorship by the state, the church, or the merchant prince.

Quebec is an island of francophone culture off a continent that is dominated by the U.S. Either you embrace protectionism or risk losing all that makes you unique.

Comment: Back To The Drug Store For More Post-It Notes (Score 1) 261

by westlake (#49350507) Attached to: Generate Memorizable Passphrases That Even the NSA Can't Guess

Using Diceware, you end up with passphrases that look like "cap liz donna demon self", "bang vivo thread duct knob train", and "brig alert rope welsh foss rang orb".

This is easy to remember?

Oh, and by the way, did anyone try this out using the touch keyboard of a smartphone or tablet?

Comment: Too damn big. (Score 1) 79

by westlake (#49347865) Attached to: NY Times: "All the News That Mark Zuckerberg Sees Fit To Print"?

There was a brief moment in time (sorry Stephen) when I thought the internet would break up the gate keepers. That moment has passed.

The gate keeper serves a much needed function.

Searching Google News for the Greenways crash returns 10,846 hits as of 1:45 PM EDT.
You can be very, very, good at this sort of thing and still be overwhelmed by the numbers and the difficulty of getting concise, timely, and meaningful results.

If I am, god forbid, reduced to paying cellular rates for data, what I want is a targeted selection of stories in depth and a quick overview from MSN News.

The gatekeeper can negotiate for access to content that would otherwise not be available outside the paywall. He may like Nerflix have the resources needed to underwrite the production of original content.

Comment: What was yours is now ours. (Score 1) 137

A new initiative from the European Commission proposes a reformed "single digital market", addressing a number of issues that it sees as obstructions to EU growth, including geoblocking --- where services such as BBC's iPlayer are only available to IP addresses within the host country.

Federalism fails when it ignores cultural distinctions between its member states, igniting controversies that are needlessly provocative and could easily have been avoided.

The iPlayer provides publically funded news and entertainment services targeting a domestic not a European or global audience --- on the face of it, a benign and legitimate purpose.

Comment: The content-free web site. (Score 3, Insightful) 79

by westlake (#49331717) Attached to: Better Disaster Shelters than FEMA Trailers (Video)

I open the Exo web page. I see all the pretty pictures.

What I don't see is what I need to know about heating, cooling and ventilation.

The lack of storage for personal belongings, food and water, the space and facilities needed for cooking and sanitation. Not the slightest thought has been given to the comfort, pride or privacy of the refugee.

That idiotic door lock bothers me no end.

These geeks may know tech, but they are utterly blind to the psychological and social forces in play when people are under extreme stress.

These stackable plastic cups seem more appropriately designed for Joe Arpaio's Tent City prison camps.

Comment: Animal House (Score 0, Troll) 764

by westlake (#49315193) Attached to: A Software Project Full of "Male Anatomy" Jokes Causes Controversy

Some people need to get over the ridiculous notion that they have some kind of "right" to not be offended.

There is no right to create a hostile working environment for women.

It takes me back some years now.

Someone brought a life sized border town strip club poster into work and pinned it to a back office wall.

That ignited a frat house arms race that ended with the entire back office being papered over with pinups with a spillover up front....

This did not end well.

Comment: Re:OEMs probably open to other OS vendors ... (Score 2) 362

by westlake (#49306999) Attached to: OEMs Allowed To Lock Secure Boot In Windows 10 Computers

OEM's should listen to their customers and not Microsoft. Locking the bootloader is extremely anti-consumer and anti-competitive.

What this means for the future of Linux and alternative OSes is unclear at best.

Those who build their own desktops will retain the ability to disable Secure Boot, since Asus or MSI doesn't know what kind of operating system you're going to load on the board. But laptops are a different story. Some laptop vendors will undoubtedly continue to ship a ''Disable'' option on Secure Boot, but vendors like HP and Dell may simply decide that closing the attack vector is more important than user freedom, particularly when the margin on PCs is so low to begin with. When every support call is measured against the handful of dollars an OEM makes on each machine, eliminating the need for such interaction is extremely attractive.

Psychological research has long confirmed the power of default settings --- ship something enabled (or disabled), and the vast majority of users will never change the option. Given that Windows machines were already required to enable Secure Boot by default, where's the security benefit in making the kill switch optional?

As far as we can tell, there isn't one.

Linux's worst-case scenario: Windows 10 makes Secure Boot mandatory, locks out other operating systems

For the vendor of a mass-market Linux laptop ---- if there is such a thing --- choosing a signed Linux OS and closing an attack vector common to both Linux and Windows makes perfect sense as well.

It is not anti-consumer and it is not anti-competitive.

OEMs are listening to their mass market customers and what these customers are saying is "Lock it down.. We don't want to tool up and poke around under the hood."

Single tasking: Just Say No.