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Comment Re:Check, But Not Mate (Score 3, Insightful) 342

No wonder efforts to open Java stalled out a couple years ago, because along comes Google, who's willing to leverage every strength of Java, borne on Sun's back, and take it away without giving back, by walking some fine line of the letter of the law, while ignoring the spirit of the law, which is that if a company drops billions of dollars into a technology, and is trying to sell it (JavaME), they should be compensated. Why didn't Google simply make their own technology from the ground up? Because they received tremendous value from taking it. Was that not worth some compensation?

I would say they did make their own technology from the ground up, as much as Sun did anyway. Android is not compatible with JavaME, you can have floats, there's no CLDC. Android is open source, how is Google not giving back?

Sun didn't drop billions on JavaME. Java itself was open (at least to an extent) that was the spirit of the "law". Google ignored the ME part of the blueprint when building their own house, which me to removes any obligation to pay for it.

Certainly Java is a fine language. But it built on the state of art at the time, not from a void. Android does the same. Isn't Java just a "proprietary copy of a more open platform, with a few tweaks, and a cynical dodge of paying for it"?

I still don't understand what you think Google is supposed to pay for. JavaME license? Certainly Google didn't invent computers, programming or phones (and neither did Sun). Who was Sun supposed to pay for the progress they took advantage of?

It's not that I don't understand how Google benefited or how Sun contributed. I just don't understand what business model you expect.

Comment Re:Check, But Not Mate (Score 3, Informative) 342

Why is more free, Java or Dalvik?

Dalvik, because Oracle has sued over Java and not the other way around. At least, that's one way to look at it. Dalvik is apache licensed.

Can you download and use Dalvik on your desktop or server? Is it completely open source?

Yes, you could download and run it on a PC (the SDK which includes an emulator is available for Linux, Mac and Windows). If you want to boot directly into android, google doesn't provide that, but see http://www.android-x86.org/. As far as I know it's completely open source.

Or is it just a proprietary copy of a more open platform, with a few tweaks, and a cynical dodge of paying for it?

This is the part I don't understand. Pay for what?

The JVM they aren't using? The implementation of the core classes from apache? The android stuff they did themselves? What are they supposed to be paying oracle (or sun) for?

Oracle would probably prefer that Google had used J2ME and would pay fees. But they didn't choose J2ME. Oracle would probably prefer that Google had licensed the JVM. But they didn't, they wrote their own.

Comment Re:This is good (Score 1) 527

We want to improve citizens productivity and their willingness to work

I disagree on this point. We (or at least I) want to improve quality of life. That's not exactly the same as productivity.

I'm having trouble finding clear information on alcohol use before, during, and after prohibition. Most sources seem to say basically alcohol use was in decline prior to prohibition, usage during prohibition is unclear due to the illegality but may have gone up, and went back to about pre-prohibition levels afterward.

Given my luck finding a clear reference on alcohol usage, I'm not even going to attempt to find quality of life data. I will say fundamentally I don't think "opening the door to Marijuana is actually quite stupid". I'm not the least convinced usage will go up significantly, much less that it will lead to significantly lower productivity or quality of life in this country.

Are we really going to increase tax revenue by locking up pot smokers? Was quality of life or productivity really increased by prohibition of alcohol?

Comment Re:Drupal hell. (Score 1) 65

I find drupal a bit difficult to work with ("hell" if you wish).

I think my two areas of concern are:

Moving target - drupal changes a fair amount in a short amount of time. This is all relative of course, I'm primarily used to working with in house proprietary CMSes. An example would be the Form API which is nice, but changed too much between drupal 5 and drupal 6 for my preference. Or perhaps there are just too many alternate ways to do things with (for me) no good defined best practices. Whatever the primary cause, I feel like I'm still struggling with over 2 years of drupal development.

Web framework vs complete CMS - if drupal was just a framework I think things might be easier. We have pretty customized requirements such that drupal + contrib modules + css doesn't come close. Yet drupal is designed to be customized in large part through various admin screens (e.g. views). So often the default behavior seems to get in the way, something that must be reconciled with, but doesn't help much. Version control is more difficult with so much stored in the database (I'm curious how others deal with this).

Overall drupal is a PITA for me over the proprietary system it (sort of, 2 sites converted) replaced. Some people clearly like it and I think if I had more generic requirements I would too (drupal does seem pretty decent vs wordpress, joomla or other CMSes). Or perhaps if I could just say "if you want that, go ahead and do that in the admin then". As it stands, I feel like drupal is costing me more time than it is saving me, and thus the learning curve doesn't seem worth it.

Comment Re:So ... the War's Back on Then? (Score 1) 336

That floodgate

Not really. The GP describes a situation where nobody pays, everyone pirates. "That" floodgate isn't open currently, it's now some pay some don't. If they push too far, I share your concerns. However if they keep pushing history as shown thus far, seems at least reasonable to debate whether that keeps the "some pay" part in the equation.

  *actual customer experience may vary, especially in regards to "they"


Comment Re:Misleading on the numbers (Score 1) 502

To be a receptionist at many facilities, you need to have a clearance.

Yeah, I know, the article said so.

The information leads the reader to think that all 1m with TS clearance are working at the moment on nefarious projects for an evil government

That's not what I got out of it.

Comment Re:WTF (Score 5, Informative) 185

/. FAQ: http://slashdot.org/faq/editorial.shtml#ed850

Slashdot seems to be very U.S.-centric. Do you have any plans to be more international in your scope?

Slashdot is U.S.-centric. We readily admit this, and really don't see it as a problem. Slashdot is run by Americans, after all, and the vast majority of our readership is in the U.S. We're certainly not opposed to doing more international stories, but we don't have any formal plans for making that happen. All we can really tell you is that if you're outside the U.S. and you have news, submit it, and if it looks interesting, we'll post it.

It is worth noting that there is a Japanese Slashdot run by VA Japan. While we helped them a little in their early days, they essentially run their own content without any real involvement from us... none of us can read Kanji! There are currently no plans to do other language or nation specific Slashdot sites.

Comment Re:I loves and hateses my Preciousss (Score 5, Insightful) 366

Maybe I don't follow this well enough to know, but I don't think Apple is doing an audit, much less line-by-line. Seems to me they just react after the fact. From what I understand they recently pulled some apps related to wifi for using undocumented APIs. If they pulled it after they fact they didn't audit the source in the first place, not even using some automated tool on the binary.

I don't have an iphone, just an ipod touch. But I don't get the impression they strictly control the app-store. They certainly impose their own restrictions, but I don't feel like it's for my benefit so I only get quality apps.

Comment Re:Found the source (Score 1) 275

"a system used to help Google comply with search warrants" reads to me like it was something google used when notified the warrant was issued. That's not the same as law enforcement agencies/officers having access themselves which is how I read "designed to give law enforcement access to people's emails".

At least in this case, I wouldn't call it a "loophole" exploited by hackers. It's just a system they have to make it easier for them to provide information under warrant. If the information exists (and presumably it does, it sounds like they would have liked the contents of the emails), it's possible a hacker might get it, even if they don't have a "quicky warrant" front end but rely on a more manual process. Details are sketchy so who knows, but maybe this unintentionally turned out to be a form of honeypot where they got limited (subject lines, meta data, I guess whatever you must provide to LEO) information out of this system, whereas had it not been found they could have penetrated something else, perhaps better protected, but might have held even more information of value to the attackers.


Games Workshop Goes After Fan Site 174

mark.leaman writes "BoingBoing has a recent post regarding Games Workshop's aggressive posturing against fan sites featuring derivative work of their game products. 'Game publisher and miniature manufacturer Games Workshop just sent a cease and desist letter to boardgamegeek.com, telling them to remove all fan-made players' aids. This includes scenarios, rules summaries, inventory manifests, scans to help replace worn pieces — many of these created for long out of print, well-loved games...' As a lifelong hobby gamer of table, board, card and miniature games, I view this as pure heresy. It made me reject the idea of buying any Games Workshop (read Warhammer) products for my son this Christmas. Their fate was sealed, in terms of my wallet, after I Googled their shenanigans. In 2007 they forbid Warhammer fan films, this year they shut down Vassal Modules, and a while back they went after retailers as well. What ever happened to fair use?"

Comment Re:Drupal Sux (Score 1) 130

That's a fair point, but I don't see mention of "use Wordpress" on Drupal's about page. Quite the opposite, they make it sound like the ordinary Joe could make whitehouse.gov. It's not a complete lie either, depending on the level of customization desired it's quite possible for someone without a lot of experience to use. But it's also quite possible you'll wind up needing a consultant. Drupal isn't immune to fanboism either. It's not so surprising that many people find it's not what they want and then tell others it wasn't what they wanted or thought they were getting.

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