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Comment stupid (Score 1) 1

You don't *want* to blow the satellite to bits because then you have a million little destructive satellites to track instead of one big one. The 2008 situation was a special case: the satellite was already falling back to earth, so all the little bits would burn up in the atmosphere.

Galaxy 15 was in geostationary orbit and is still at roughly that distance. The space shuttle can't reach geostationary orbit; it's too far away and the shuttle isn't built for it. When the shuttle deployed similar satellites, it released them in much lower orbits and they used a combination of small fuel burns and several months of waiting to reach the much higher geostationary orbits.

Comment Re:Social networks (Score 1) 295

I don't necessarily agree with this. I think that the number of people already on facebook is definitely an obstacle, but just look at its own history. You just need to create momentum, which is difficult to do but not impossible. When I first joined facebook, hardly anyone I knew outside of one specific circle of friends were on it. But I would tell my other friends about it, and eventually they'd try it out, and presumably do the same to others. I don't doubt it would change, but I doubt it would change like facebook did, at least in regards to privacy. The set-up alone would make that seem like a non-starter. All facebook needed to do was change its TOS. That doesn't seem like it'd work here. What I think their biggest challenge is going to be is to make it as easy to use/join as the more centralized social networks. Anything that starts out by saying "allows you to set up your own node" is going to turn off a vast majority of people.

Comment Re:14 years and counting (Score 1) 543

You're right; I'd forgotten (it's been a few lifetimes). From dmesg:

[some stuff snipped...]
Initializing CPU#0
Detected 448.980 MHz processor.
Console: colour VGA+ 80x25
Calibrating delay loop... 894.56 BogoMIPS
Memory: 253148k/262144k available (1340k kernel code, 6548k reserved, 999k data,
  128k init, 0k highmem)
Dentry cache hash table entries: 32768 (order: 6, 262144 bytes)
Inode cache hash table entries: 16384 (order: 5, 131072 bytes)
Mount cache hash table entries: 512 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
Buffer-cache hash table entries: 16384 (order: 4, 65536 bytes)
Page-cache hash table entries: 65536 (order: 6, 262144 bytes)
CPU: L1 I cache: 16K, L1 D cache: 16K
CPU: L2 cache: 512K
Intel machine check architecture supported.
Intel machine check reporting enabled on CPU#0.
CPU: After generic, caps: 0383f9ff 00000000 00000000 00000000
CPU: Common caps: 0383f9ff 00000000 00000000 00000000
CPU: Intel Pentium III (Katmai) stepping 03
Enabling fast FPU save and restore... done.
Enabling unmasked SIMD FPU exception support... done.
Checking 'hlt' instruction... OK.
[more stuff snipped]

I think it replaced my previous system, which was a 200MHz Pentium Pro, and that's where I got the old MHz from...no wonder this system seems so fast ;-).

Comment Re:Who reads the manual? (Score 1) 457

In a case where a garage door vendor sued a customer for using a different opener than the one delivered by the door vendor, the vendor claimed patents (memory may fail me here, what other kind of IP could it be?) on the specific codes to activate the mechanism. The judge found that one had to assume the customer had bought the permission to use the patent when he bought the door.

That is fair enough. But, what happens when the patent holder isn't the same entity as the one that sold you the product?

What if the patent wasn't available to be read (ie. unknown, and still sitting in the 2 year processing cycle at the patent office)?

Now, both they guy that sold you the device and you are infringing the patent. The patent holder has legal recourse (which is the purpose behind the whole patent system) to stop all parties from infringing on their patented process.

Note: this only applies to process patents that describe a method that just happens to be implemented by a device. Likewise, it probably doesn't apply to a patent for direct physical attributes of the device itself. ie. what the device does versus what the device is.

Comment Re:Ken Cuccinelli (Score 0, Troll) 617

I am sorry but those "academics" allowed themselves to become political and the consequences are they now get treated like politicians.

No matter if you think the climate change theories have merit or if you are a "denier" you must admit there has been a great deal of poor scientific practices and fraud where climate change research has been concerned. Its provable that lots of data is coming from stations to close to man made radiators by standards set and then ignored by the same researchers. Some of the climate-gate allegations were true; even though most of the worst were not; and the hockey stick theory was shown to be total bunk and the people who put it forward knew it.

The scientists and academics allowed themselves to become political; and now the existing body politic no longer sees them as off limits and will subject them to their rules. Welcome to the dark ages 2.0 regardless of who brought it on.

Comment Re:Hold bonuses in escrow for two years (Score 1) 172

The problem with these schemes is that managers can manipulate events to keep them off the books until bonuses are dispersed... in a way that could seem reasonable.

Fresh out of college, I had a friend who quit a job as an accountant at the local instance of a fortune 500 company because of exactly these kinds of shenanigans. The managers and accountants were all "in" on it, but not explicitly. They would just talk about when the proper time was to put things on the books. It happened to work out to maximize bonuses, shaft certain people, and displace blame. My friend thought it was unethical. Oh, to be young and idealistic again!

Comment Re:I'd rather attribute it to poor writing... (Score 1) 170

I don't think Lost would be possible to follow at all without the Lostpedia.

I don't think that's true at all. You could follow Lost perfectly well simply by watching it and paying attention.

Of course you get more from it by seeing what other people noticed - just like anything else with any depth at all.

Comment Re:Who reads the manual? (Score 1) 457

No, that is not what they are doing. All they are doing is saying 'if you want a license to make commercial works, it will cost you x, if you want to make non-commercial works, it will cost you y'. They are not putting limitations on YOUR product, they are putting limitations on your use of THEIR product. And this is a perfectly valid and normal way of doing business. For instance, look at the difference in cost between leasing space for commercial use, and leasing space for residential use. If you rent residential space and put a business in it, you are going to wind up in court.

The alternative is that everyone, commercial and consumer, pays the same price. Is there any reason why that is any better? Keep in mind that that will most certainly result in an increased price to consumers.

Comment Re:I wouldn't quite call it transcoding... (Score 1) 277

Actually, is it even in an FLV container? I don't watch video on Facebook, so I don't know. What I do know is that H.264 in a MOV or MP4 container, works just as well in Flash as H.264 in an FLV container. If historic content is in an FLV container, perhaps for new content they just changed the default container, so no remuxing is necessary at all.

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