Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Gotta love... (Score 1) 1131

... If you don't understand the equivalence, you might just be a religious extremist.

Your religion might say killing a doctor who performs abortions is acceptable. Their religion might say killing a cartoonist who mocks their prophet is acceptable. In both cases you're saying murder is acceptable because your religion says so. That's pretty much textbook religious extremist.

Well, I don't see them as equivalent. Teller was providing a public service, giving substance to the law of the land (having the freedom to choose a medical procedure is meaningless if no doctor will perform it). The cartoons only have "freedom of expression" at their disposal which does not apply to corporate airwaves (not saying I agree with this, just stating the facts), and the laws about freedom of expression are not universal (the US is the only country I know of that has upheld the idea in court -- other countries at most claim it, even in the face of obviously contradicting laws.)

While the murders are equivalent from the point of view of the number of victims, the justification for killing Theo-Van Gogh was just vacuous, whereas the justification for killing Teller makes the crime far, far worse. I can go make a Muhammad cartoon anytime I like to fill in that void, I cannot suddenly go perform abortions to fill in the void left by Teller.

As Ayan Hirshi Ali stated, in order to fix the Muslim attitude towards depictions of Muhammad, you can just have *everyone* actually engage in it. The weight of the world opinion is not trivial and would give them pause to think. I think her analysis is correct. For the abortion issue, there is no changing those people's minds. Even if there was a pervasive education campaign, whatever remaining pro-lifers there would be would always be the most radical and would still carry out murders of doctors no matter what their demographic.

(You can't accuse me of being lead by my religion, because I am atheist.)

Comment Re:t's turtles all the way down (Score 1) 353

The more annoying it is to spam, the fewer people will do it. If writing software to get past this (or buying the software) costs a fortune, good.

Since when does it cost anyone anything to write software? The whole lesson of the computer industry is that developing (most) software has reasonable finite fixed costs and relatively small on-going costs and (if its any good) has perpetual returns (for as long as you can sell it; funding your development costs for upgrades.)

I hate to be a spoil sport, but unless you cost the person sending the spam in exact proportion to the amount they send, you fundamentally are not addressing the cost structure of SPAM.

Comment Re:"Perfect"??? (Score 1) 353

If it can stop a lot of this kind of spam, that's fine with me. Let it be an arms race. If the spammers have to make up new templates every 4 hours, that's going to make things a lot harder.

It would be very temporary. One thing we need to realize is that the spammers have reasonably intelligent programmers working on *their* side. A template deducer relies on the fact that the message has fixed text that forms a signature for the template. The spammers do it this way right now, because its really easy to do this and hash based filters can be defeated this way.

But if the spammers need to write more complicated "automated alternate sentence rewording" generators they will.

Comment Re:Missed one: (Score 1) 397

I don't know, the level of unethical manipulation, objectivization, self-involvement, narcissism, and sexism in your theory seems perfectly consistent with the "stereotype of the cool western male."

In case you missed it -- women do this to men all the time. They typically start "the game" one step ahead of most men in this way. When they want a certain outcome in a relationship they say things to manipulate the guy; or at the very least that's a very typical tool in their toolbox (to say they always do this is an over-generalization). This has actually been clinically tested -- women have natural superior ability in something called "intentionality" (think of it as the opposite of Asperger's syndrome, which tends to affect men more). That is to say, they more naturally think in terms of what you or others in general are thinking and are more likely to act in accordance to that. Men more natural try to build simpler models of the world.

Hurricane78 is probably just someone who has seen through this and has the mental capacity to "turn the game around" in a sense, and "play the game" at their level.

Comment Re:Bad metric (Score 1) 234

Survival is a terrible metric of intelligence. By that standard, lions and tigers and bears are the most intelligent species on the planet.

No by that metric lions, tigers and other mammals are ankle biters compared to lizards, birds, amphibians, insects and fish. In fact Octopuses and sharks have a much longer track record for survival than these mere mammal upstarts. In evolutionary terms, the mammals have not yet proven anything, other than a slight improvement over non-bird dinosaurs. Though I will certainly agree with you that its a bad metric. I ain't bowing to bacteria and weeds in terms of intelligence.

Comment Re:Prior Art so Prior It Hurts (Score 3, Interesting) 281

The initial rejections are just a smoke screen. The USPTO just does that to try to disincentivise appliers from doing "blanket patents". They are forced to come back and justify the patent a second time, which costs lawyer money, which the applying corporation (rarely is it a person) will have to consider before they try to push through their patent.

But in the end, as long as the applying company has the money (like IBM) and people willing to explain the spin on their patent, the USPTO is basically powerless to stop them. The USPTO does not hire talented people who can actually assess patents and understand what is obvious and what is not (such people would rather be working for a start-up or a big corporation or whatever). I know this because of the questions on the patent I applied for as principle (and got). They asked the wrong questions -- where I was being innovative they challenged me on prior art (clearly not the case) rather than obviousness.

Nothing changes the fact that the USPTO is in way over their heads. All because they allow software patents in the first place, and there are too many cynical software engineers trying to get their little bonus incentive to file the patent and throw it on their resume. (I should know, that's what I did.)

Comment Re:Expected (Score 1) 1654

They do indeed include Open Office. (It would be insane not to.) In TFA it says:

MATC also says it promises to accept any of Schubert's papers or class documents using whatever software she has installed.

Which means there is simply a severe case of computer illiteracy here. She is *NOT* prevented from taking classes because she happens to have Ubuntu installed. Of course you can use Ubuntu and Open Office for your education. I have basically absolutely NO sympathy for anyone younger than me who fails to understand computer basics. And neither should anyone else. In this day and age, computer literacy *IS* literacy.

Also it should be pointed out that this single person's little problem doesn't rise to the level of a serious news story to be written about. Yet it is. Why is that? Do you think maybe someone is trying to sell a narrative here? Maybe the magazine wants to make it seem as though Ubuntu is somehow anti-school or something, and that Windows "just works". Why are there no stories about people with Vista on their laptops that crash all the time and lose people's term papers while they are at school?

You have to recognize a bullshit story when you see one, and I see one right here.

Slashdot Top Deals

"Gort, klaatu nikto barada." -- The Day the Earth Stood Still