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Comment Re:How about.... (Score 2) 232

No population of today has much to do with the same population of the 5th century BC, anywhere, but especially so in an area, ranging from Turkey to India, where many country borders were pretty much drawn by colonial forces as recently as some decades ago. Therefore I think that using the narration of ancient history, either accurate or conveniently spun, to deny legitimation for a whole modern population, is silly. This holds true for both the Israeli and the Palestinians. There are two communities living there, today, and I suspect that most of them barely know who their grandparents are, let alone care about where their ancestors were living before Christ, and just want to live a peaceful life in the place where they were born; unfortunately I'm the least qualified person on Earth to suggest them a way to reach this goal.

Comment Re:How about.... (Score 3, Informative) 232

To be fair, the term "Palestine" was already in use back in the ancient Egypt, it wasn't invented by the Romans. Also, the Romans never ethnically cleansed the region of the whole Jewish population: they banned them from residing in Jerusalem (which happened, to put things into context, after the Jews lost multiple wars, that themselves started, and that resulted in the killing of hundreds of thousands of Greek and Roman people living in the region). In fact, many Jews already lived outside of Judaea before the Bar Kochba revolt, and many continued living inside of Judaea after.

(I'm not saying this to deny the facts that the Jews have a history of continued persecution and that the state of Israel has a right to exist and to defend itself.)

Comment Re:What Authority ... (Score 1) 564

Define 'assistance for corporations'.

Having Apple pay a tax rate of 0.005%, and others pay a tax rate of 12.5%; check out the document from the EC.

As long as Ireland applies their rules and rates uniformly

They don't, that's the point.

Is a country that charges less than Belgium's 34% corporate tax rate 'assisting' corporations? Because that would be a race to the bottom: Allowing the sloppiest and most inefficient governments to dictate tax and fiscal policy to the rest of the EU.

That would be very wrong, and unsurprisingly it's not the case.

Ireland doesn't want the money.

Then they may accept a 0.005% tax rate from all the other companies. And probably go bankrupt. Until they do, the difference between what they effectively ask from Apple and what they need to ask from everyone else in order to provide for the needs of their citizens is a measure of the unjust sacrifice that they impose on the rest of the EU members.

Perhaps they want to live within their means and not hve piles of cash sitting around as a magnet for the continent's deadbeats. Its their choice and I believe they have a right to make it.

Ireland is receiving more money from the EU than they give, each year. Portraying them as the source and the rest of the EU as the sink is a complete overturn of reality.


Apple Ordered To Pay Up To $14.5 Billion in EU Tax Crackdown, Cook Refutes EU's Conclusion ( 564

Apple has been ordered to pay a record sum of 13 billion euros ($14.5 billion) plus interest after the European Commission said Ireland illegally slashed the iPhone maker's tax bill, in a crackdown on fiscal loopholes that also risks inflaming tensions with the United States Treasury. According to the European Union regulator, Apple benefited from selective tax treatment that gave it an unfair advantage over other businesses. In the meanwhile, Apple has refuted such accusations, saying that EU's conclusion has "no basis in fact or law." EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said, "If my effective tax rate would be 0.05 percent falling to 0.005 percent -- I would have felt that maybe I should have a second look at my tax bill." Apple CEO Tim Cook said, "Over the years, we received guidance from Irish tax authorities on how to comply correctly with Irish tax law -- the same kind of guidance available to any company doing business there. In Ireland and in every country where we operate, Apple follows the law and we pay all the taxes we owe."

Comment Re:Removable storage that never gets removed (Score 4, Insightful) 221

I see people complain about this in regards to certain smartphones (looking at you Apple) but I think Apple and you are correct that in 99% of the cases the removable storage adds complexity and cost for a feature that never gets used.

In the case of the iPhone 6S, Apple want from you 749 $ for the 16 GB version and 849 $ for the 64 GB version. Therefore they charge you approximately 2.08 $ per GB. You can buy a cheap UHS class1, 64 GB microSD from Samsung for 21 $ (0.32 $ per GB) or a faster UHS class 3 one from SanDisk for 40 $ (0.63 $ per GB). Moreover, the replaceability of a microSD card means that you don't have to shell more money up front for a bigger device, and you can spend them later if and when the need arises.

So not putting a card slot isn't something that Apple do to reduce the costs for the consumers, they do it to rape their wallets.


Judge Dismisses Movie Piracy Case, IP-Address Doesn't Prove Anything ( 164

An anonymous reader quotes a report from TorrentFreak: In what's believed to be a first of its kind ruling, a federal court in Oregon has dismissed a direct infringement complaint against an alleged movie pirate from the outset. According to the judge, linking an IP-address to a pirated download is not enough to prove direct copyright infringement. In the Oregon District Court, Magistrate Judge Stacie Beckerman recently recommended dismissal of a complaint filed by the makers of the Adam Sandler movie The Cobbler. According to the Judge both claims of direct and indirect infringement were not sufficient for the case to continue. What's unique in this case, is that the direct infringement claims were dismissed sua sponte, which hasn't happened before. To prove direct infringement copyright holders merely have to make it "plausible" that a defendant, Thomas Gonzales in this case, is indeed the copyright infringer. This is traditionally done by pointing out that the IP-address is directly linked to the defendant's Internet connection, for example. However, according to Judge Beckerman this is not enough. In response to community backlash, Oculus has decided to change its DRM policy (again) to allow HTC Vive games to play on the Oculus Rift virtual-reality system.

Comment Re:Don't Panic (Score 1) 535

It's more complicated than that. Since apparenty the Northern nations weren't happy to pay for Mrs Thatcher's reimbursement, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Sweden and Denmark obtained a special exemption, and they pay less for the British rebate. That's why it's up to France, Italy and Spain to pay up.

Comment Re:Don't Panic (Score 4, Insightful) 535

Exactly, the EU zone has only been beneficial to business

Yes, an open market is the best possible condition for creating jobs. That's what anyone with a basic competence in economy says, so there must be some truth in it.

and the Soviet Bloc countries (business moving there for cheap labor and eventually even further east was the whole objective for the forming of the EU). Before the EU and even now, similar business-friendly arrangements have been made amongst European and even Asian countries without any EU government involvement.

So the EU is evil, but also the EU doesn't matter, because rich people will move their businesses to China anyway?

The EU and later on the Euro destroyed the sovereignty of individual nations (now only nations by name only for traditions' sake),

People elect both their local governments and the European parliament. Their local governments nominate the European government and it also has to be approved by the European parliament. And that government has very limited powers to begin with. The EU didn't destroy our sovereignty any more than the administrator of a condominium destroys the flat owners' ownership.

Of course, if member states send into the EU institutions their worst politicians who failed at home, it's a problem. But hardly a fault of the EU.

the Brits were at least smart enough to maintain some of their distance when the Euro came along.

The Brits have, among other things, a religious leader as unelected, unreplaceable Head of State and Lord Spirituals sitting alongside elected members of the Parliament. To each his own.

The EU socialized the losses of its members on a continental scale (Greece etc) while the affluent Western Europe had their middle class evaporate to pay for it and many of those countries (Netherlands, Belgium and France) will soon follow the UK.

The EU budget accounts for 1% of the total taxes paid by European citizens, how can one see its wealth evaporate because of a fluctuation of up to 1% in his expenses? It's globalization what hit the middle class; it has allowed us to pay less for iPhones without automatically giving us back a way to pay for food and housing. But I can hardly see how being a smaller country in the global maket can help fight that.

Plus, this whole "the North paying for the South" subtly racist propaganda is toxic. Britain was the poorest among the big nations when it joined the EEC. Currently, it is France, Italy and Spain who pay for the British rebate and not the other way around.

Comment Re: Rationale aside... (Score 1) 1592

The UK never was in the club really. The joined half-heartedly late in the process, and ever since they never stopped whining about how badly they wanted to leave (as if anybody had forced them to apply for admittance in the first place). Clarity about their true feelings towards the EU was long overdue and finally it has been made. No form of government can exist without the trust of its own people.

BBC: UK Votes To Leave The European Union ( 1592

An anonymous reader quotes a report from the BBC: The UK has voted by 52% to 48% to leave the European Union after 43 years in a historic referendum, a BBC forecast suggests. London and Scotland voted strongly to stay in the EU but the remain vote has been undermined by poor results in the north of England. Voters in Wales and the English shires have backed Brexit in large numbers. The referendum turnout was 71.8% -- with more than 30 million people voting -- the highest turnout since 1992. London has voted to stay in the EU by around 60% to 40%. However, no other region of England has voted in favor of remaining. Britain would be the first country to leave the EU since its formation -- but a leave vote will not immediately mean Britain ceases to be a member of the 28-nation bloc. That process could take a minimum of two years, with Leave campaigners suggesting during the referendum campaign that it should not be completed until 2020 -- the date of the next scheduled general election. The prime minister will have to decide when to trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, which would give the UK two years to negotiate its withdrawal. Once Article 50 has been triggered a country can not rejoin without the consent of all member states. British Prime Minister David Cameron is under pressure to resign as a result of the decision. UK Independence Party (UKIP) leader Nigel Farage called on him to quit "immediately." One labor source said, "If we vote to leave, Cameron should seriously consider his position." Several pro-Leave Conservatives including Boris Johnson and Michael Gove have signed a letter to Mr. Cameron urging him to stay no matter the decision. Mr. Cameron did say he would trigger Article 50 as soon as possible after a leave vote.

Update 6/24 09:33 GMT: David Cameron has resigned.

Comment Vote for Trump! (Score 4, Interesting) 751

Pretty please! Im Italian and I've spent the last 20 years getting lectured and laughed at because Berlusconi. Now you're on the brink of electing a person so special and unique that Berlusconi is Mother Teresa in comparison. I'll be lighting a candle if you do. Sincerely yours.

Comment Re:You cucks should be deporting millions (Score 1, Interesting) 751

If you had ever read a book on European history, you'd know that Europe ("the West" is a post-WW2 concept) has been at war for thousands of years with itself, often because different portions of the same people couldn't agree on which variety of Christianity was the right one.

And people are no longer making babies because of the shitty socio-economic system that deprives them of the time, resources and willingness to procreate. Fortunately, there's immigrants who are providing fresh manpower to wipe the European's arses when they get old and discover that their iPad retina pros have no app for that.

The last time European nation-states (another relatively recent notion) started raising barbed wire around their borders and brainwashing their citizens about how better and unique and ancient and God-chosen their own culture was, the final results were some 70 million people dead (of their own), thousands of years of history in rubbles, and a country solely made of immigrants to become by far the biggest cultural, political and military power, in the world and possibly in history.


Google Unveils Neural Network With Ability To Determine Location of Any Image ( 116

schwit1 writes: Here's a tricky task. Pick a photograph from the web at random. Now try to work out where it was taken using only the image itself. If the image shows a famous building or landmark, such as the Eiffel Tower or Niagara Falls, the task is straightforward. But the job becomes significantly harder when the image lacks specific location cues or is taken indoors or shows a pet or food or some other detail. Nevertheless, humans are surprisingly good at this task. To help, they bring to bear all kinds of knowledge about the world such as the type and language of signs on display, the types of vegetation, architectural styles, the direction of traffic, and so on. Humans spend a lifetime picking up these kinds of geolocation cues. So it's easy to think that machines would struggle with this task. And indeed, they have. Today, that changes thanks to the work of Tobias Weyand, a computer vision specialist at Google, and a couple of pals. These guys have trained a deep-learning machine to work out the location of almost any photo using only the pixels it contains.

Comment Re:Why IS systemd hated so much? (Score 1) 699

It takes some control away from administrators/developers/users and concentrates it into the distribution maintainer. Most people appreciate this, because they like to work less, some people don't, because they like to fix things themselves when they break, to use their system in a manner that the distribution maintainer hasn't planned, or to know the details of how the system works.

In practice, you can't avoid it if you want to use the most common userspaces for Linux. The average user won't care about its presence per se.

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