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Comment: No shit, Sherlock (Score 1, Insightful) 264

by whterbt (#32366954) Attached to: iPhone's PIN-Based Security Transparent To Ubuntu

Seriously, people are shocked by this? Did anyone actually think entering a PIN was encrypting the device? Who told you that it would?

This was a feature intended to keep your jerkwad friends from picking up your phone and prank-texting your boss or girlfriend. Nothing more.

Helpful hint to all those who were fooled by this: those "fingerprint scanner" apps in the App Store aren't real, either.

Comment: Because they want to see if you'll lie (Score 1) 613

by whterbt (#30880012) Attached to: Why the IRS Should Automatically Fill In Returns With What It Knows

This should be blatantly obvious. Of course they already know most of the answers. But they're using this as a test of your honesty. Why should the IRS go through a lot of work to make your return slightly easier, when they're benefiting from having you self-report?

If your answers don't match what they already know, they can fine you up the wazoo, charge back interest, etc. Much more profitable and less work.

Comment: Re:Legally, how? (Score 5, Insightful) 645

It's because you paid money for access to DRM-protected content. You didn't buy shit. It's their device (you paid money for the use of it), their content (you pay a fee to get to view it). At no time did they actually give you anything.

It's just like a DVD. What are you paying $20 for? Is it for the right to view the content? If it were, then you should be able to get a cheap replacement when the disc fails, right? Well if it's not that, then you paid for the copy of the movie, I suppose? But then, why can't you make a copy?

Pay money for DRM'd content and you'll get exactly what they want to give you - smoke and mirrors.

Comment: Re:it sucks (Score 1) 1055

by whterbt (#26443035) Attached to: How Does a 9/80 Work Schedule Work Out?

Parent's comments have everything to do with the parent's employer and nothing to do with the actual 9/80 schedule.

I've been working 9/80 for over 5 years now. It's a great benefit for me. The extra hour isn't even noticeable after you've already been working 8 hours. And when you can bail an extra hour early on the on-Friday, you feel like you got a little bonus.

Getting stuff done during the week isn't much of a problem. The grocery stores are less crowded in the evenings. Any "business hours" business can be conducted on the off-Friday, or during your extra hour on the on-Friday if you start early enough.

Insist on flex-time, however, that goes for any schedule, not just 9/80.

You will become spoiled by the 3-day weekends. 2-day weekends don't seem long enough.

As far as management respect, don't work wherever the parent does, obviously. My customers don't care that I don't respond on an off-Friday, because they're off too.

Questions/issues may include:
  * Will all employees be on the 9/80 schedule (and will they all be on the SAME one)? If some people are not allowed to do 9/80 (e.g. hourly employees), are they going to be resentful?
  * How is overtime handled on the off-Friday? For example, we have a certain number of hours of OT that are automatically unpaid if they are worked on an "on-day". But if they are worked on an "off-day", including an off-Friday, the mandatory window can be waived.
  * Can you switch on and off of the 9/80 schedule at will?
  * How will your timekeeping be handled with the different-length workweeks? Our work week is cut down the middle of the Friday to make each "week" 40 hours and makes time accounting complicated.

tl;dr - 9/80 is great. Do it.

Movies

First Trek Film Footage Unveiled 320

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the but-not-to-me dept.
Ostracus writes "Lost creator JJ Abrams has unveiled footage from his Star Trek prequel at a press event in London. The clips featured US actor Chris Pine as the young Captain Kirk, Heroes star Zachary Quinto as Mr Spock and Simon Pegg as Enterprise engineer Scotty. The audience also saw Leonard Nimoy reprise his role as the older Mr Spock in one of four excerpts from the film. In his introduction, Abrams said he wanted the film to be released in May 2009, to feel 'legitimate and real.' Speaking at London's Vue West End cinema on Tuesday morning, the film-maker admitted he had 'never really been a huge Star Trek fan.'" Note that the article doesn't actually contain the footage, just brief descriptions of it. The video clip included is just the old trailer that we saw many moons ago. But that won't stop me from lusting.
Music

+ - Multiformat Listening Test at 64kbps 1

Submitted by
prospective_user
prospective_user writes "Do you think you have good ears? Think again.

The community at Hydrogenaudio has prepared a Public Listening Test for comparison of the most popular audio codecs (AAC, Vorbis, and Microsoft's WMA included) in a battle to see how they stand at compressing audio at 64kbps.

Many of the participants right now have expressed their surprise at being unable to determine which is the original and which is the compressed version of 18 samples covering a vast amount of musical styles.

The results of this test (and other that are conducted at Hydrogenaudio) will be used by the developers of the codecs to further improve the "transparency" and let this kind of test be even harder.

Everyone is invited to participate and show how good your listening is!"
Software

+ - Daylight Savings Time Change

Submitted by mdirish
mdirish (1043728) writes "The U.S. Government has mandated changes to Daylight Saving Time (DST) for 2007. Beginning in the spring of 2007, DST start and end dates for the United States will transition to comply with the Energy Policy Act of 2005. In 2007, DST dates in the United States will start three weeks earlier (2 a.m. on the second Sunday in March) and will end one week later (2 a.m. on the first Sunday in November). I've already started to get mail from software vendors about issuing patches to their software. Sysadmins like myself may be inundated with patches and config changes to reflect this change."
Businesses

Verizon to Allow Ads on Its Mobile Phones 179

Posted by Zonk
from the because-there-was-one-place-they-couldn't-get-you dept.
srizah tipped us to a New York Times article, which has the news that Verizon is going to introduce ads to their phones. The offerings will show up when users browse the internet via their cell service, and will exclude streaming ads that might not work in the mobile format. Sprint began offering ads right on their cell 'deck' in October, and the article indicates that access to cellphone screens is a going concern with online advertisers. From the article: "Even without cooperation from carriers, advertisers have been able to reach consumers visiting off-deck sites, and such marketing has grown in size and in scope. The first advertisers drawn to mobile phones tended to be quick-serve restaurants and hotels -- businesses that people might want access to on the go. But increasingly, there is traditional brand marketing, said Jeff Janer, chief marketing officer for Third Screen Media, a mobile ad management company that pairs advertisers and agencies with providers of mobile content, like USA Today and the Weather Channel."

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