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Comment: Re:But the price... (Score 3, Insightful) 128

by wile_e_wonka (#49037797) Attached to: Study: Smartphones Just As Good As Fitness Trackers For Counting Steps

But don't the fitness trackers all pair with smartphones to actually convey the data they collect? It seems that this research is saying that any fitness tracker that relies on pairing with a phone is redundant (unless the tracker does something grand that the phone does not).

Disclaimer: I have a smartphone, so I don't feel like I need a fitness tracker (and still wouldn't feel like I was in need of a fitness tracker if I didn't have a smartphone--I don't need something on my wrist to tell me that I sit in front of a computer in my mom's basement all day).

Comment: Re:Don't tell me police doesn't abuse their powers (Score 1) 368

by wile_e_wonka (#48667911) Attached to: Study: Police Body-Cams Reduce Unacceptable Use of Force

I agree with this, but I'm not particularly concerned. I do not think that the general public would be viewing the videos like a live feed or much at all. I think we already have precedent for how this would work--dash cams in police cars. That system seems to work fine and I think it would be the same here.

Comment: Re:Don't tell me police doesn't abuse their powers (Score 2) 368

by wile_e_wonka (#48666923) Attached to: Study: Police Body-Cams Reduce Unacceptable Use of Force

Maybe it proves that putting the criminals in the spot light reduced their violence by 60%, and reduced false "police brutality" claims by 90%

If this is true then it still makes perfect sense to use the body cameras. There are far fewer allegations of police brutality to deal with--whether the reduction comes from an actual decrease in police brutality or from a reduction in false claims of police brutality or an increase of cooperation of the people in-front of the officer--who cares? It's all good to me.

In my mind, the only true downside of the body cameras is the expense of dealing with collection and storage of thousands upon thousands of hours of mundane footage. I am not confident that the monetary benefit of the cameras (e.g., I witnessed a trial of police officers accused of police brutality, which allegations were utterly falsified in my opinion. The department spent a lot of money on that case) will outweigh the monetary cost (I think the cost of maintaining the system will be more than the cost of false allegations). But, there is a nonmonetary benefit that it sounds more and more to me like outweighs the cost.

An effective police force needs the trust of the public, and I think this is at a low point lately. It sounds like the body cameras will probably help.

Comment: Re:The Internet works again! (Score 5, Informative) 81

by wile_e_wonka (#48583659) Attached to: Tracking the Mole Inside Silk Road 2.0

This is veering offtopic, but, according to this article, is not to be trusted, if I am understanding it correctly:

Various mirror sites of The Pirate Bay have sprung up since the site’s disappearance, but this one is different. Some alternatives simply provide a copy of The Pirate Bay with no new content (many proxy sites have been doing this for years). Others, like, go further and even provide fake content as if it was new and even attempt to charge users.

Probably any torrent site is not to be easily trusted, but I could imagine hackers setting up a lookalike site in order to get people who should know better to download problematic stuff. Heck, maybe the CIA set it up.

Comment: Re: IANL (Score 1) 268

by wile_e_wonka (#48359865) Attached to: GNOME Project Seeks Donations For Trademark Battle With Groupon

And neither Apple (the music company) nor Apple (the computer company) was able to prevent the other from using the name, even after the computer company dove into the music world (though they settled that without a trial). "General Motors" is a unique and specific enough combination of words (e.g., it isn't such a great name for a software company), that I don't think they could easily be used by another company in a nonconfusing way.

I just don't see confusion with GNOME as a likely outcome of allowing Groupon to name its tablet Gnome. Trademark doesn't give the holder the uninhibited right to use a word. It just gives the holder the rights to a word in a specific realm.

Comment: Re:Why is this legal in the U.S.? (Score 5, Informative) 149

This factory is expected to be gargantuan and will employ a great many smart people with good paying jobs. The factory will have a great many trucks going in and out. The money going to pay these people is coming from the income from a California company. So, well paid engineers will receive California money to purchase houses and furniture and food, etc. in NV. The engineers will pay sales taxes, property taxes, and will spend money in the casinos (I almost mentioned income taxes, until I remembered that NV doesn't have a state income tax--they have casinos instead). The calculus that NV is making with this deal is that the tax revenue it is giving up from Tesla will more than be made up for by the cut of the income they keep from the money that Tesla will pay to its employees and to NV truck drivers and suppliers, etc. The thought is that this will be a net positive for NV.

Comment: Re:Black Hats shoot themselves in the foot. (Score 4, Insightful) 82

by wile_e_wonka (#47567675) Attached to: Black Hat Researchers Actively Trying To Deanonymize Tor Users

If Black Hats don't hack it then the NSA will. But the NSA will quietly keep the vulnerability(ies) to themselves and use them to collect data. Whereas a Black Hat looking to rely on TOR will be best off figuring out its weaknesses in order to make it more effective.

In other words, people who rely on TOR would be completely stupid to not try to hack it to determine its vulnerabilities. The only odd thing about this isn't really odd at all when you think about these hackers are--they're exposing vulnerabilities in a particularly spectacular fashion.

Comment: Re:Not likely. (Score 5, Informative) 365

What he means, I think, is that most computer companies make "consumer grade" machines and "commercial grade" machines. I've not has an Asus or Lenovo, but I've had Toshiba, HP, and Dell. With respect to Dell, I've had both consumer and commercial grade machines, built to higher specifications. Most recently I purchased a Dell Latitude 5000 series laptop--in Dell's explanation of this computer in comparison to the 7000 series, it gave the 5000 series a build quality of 3 out of 4 stars, it gave the 3000 series 2 out of 4 stars (still Latitude--which implies the consumer grade stuff is 1 out of 4 stars for build quality). The consumer grade machines seem to be designed to last about 2 years or less. The commercial grade machines are designed to last more like 4 years.

The problem is, you have to pay a premium for the commercial grade machines.

With Apple, there is no "consumer grade" and "commercial grade"--they're all made to high specifications.

Comment: Falls over when it runs out of juice? (Score 1) 218

So, if you take the thing to its limits, you'd better remember to get out before the battery completely dies. Because when the gyro stops turning, you can't put your feet down (since there is a vehicle body in the way) to keep the thing from falling over.

Not that I think the idea is a bad one in general.

I saw a Kickstarter campaign just the other day using this concept to replace training wheels in kids' bikes (a gyro goes in the front wheel). Personally, I think it was a better idea in the kids' bike than on a motorbike. And that Kickstarter video had actual footage of the concept in action, with kids riding bikes, and a shot of the bike rolling with no one on it and self correcting when somebody smacked it several times in a manner that would normally knock a bike over).

All the evidence concerning the universe has not yet been collected, so there's still hope.