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Comment Good that this finally get's some worldwide press. (Score 3, Informative) 349

I've been stuck in the same dilemmy in Germany now for more than ten years, and how crazy this whole legislation is and has always been never occurred to anybody in public.

This goes so far that the rates are actually too low to really complain about, but high enough to be a big headache for small concerts and stuff.

If an artist is signed with GEMA (so, get's money from them), he even has to pay GEMA fees in case he organizes a concert himself, for himself, only playing his own songs.

He will get the money back later, of course - but subtract bureaucracy fees. Same goes on for CDs!

It's just completely crazy. So as an artist, you are either "in" - and pay to eventually get paid - or "out" - and you never get paid at all.

The winners? Big acts, as usual.

Comment Re:So, here's one interpretation of "Why" (Score 1) 206

First thing, Heise will not sell this information, they are basically the good guys, protected by several laws and priviledges they would loose by such action, plus widely financed - they dont need to do so.

Their main interest is to expose something bad going on, which is just living up to their journalist role. Good stuff.

Facebook is already retreating, they know they can only loose, and Heise is - in Germany - very, very big (I think every techy guy/girl in Germany at least pays minimum attention to their news feed, plus one of the multiple print magazines they publish). They also have a history of going to court, and going there sucessfuly, fighting for publicists rights regarding modern technology issues (patent/copyright gags and stuff) and net freedom.

People have been asking for how they do the Facebook "masking" (reportedly, already over 500 official requests), and Heise said they are already working on creating a documentation on how to do it.

Facebook should not even try to stop this, war is already lost, at least throughout Europe. The whole "like" system outweighs "hidden tracking" by far in value, and with criticism rising constantly in public media (!) plus privacy jurisdiction evolving badly for them in Europe, they will have to be very careful to not loose everything.

As you said: to big to fail. Not.

Comment There is not such thing as a "group"... (Score 1) 117

... called "Anonymous". A group is defined as not only people sharing the same motives and taking concurrent actions, but also some "working together" routine, organization, and structure.

All of this is missing in Anonymous; it's more like a swarm, then a group.

This critic is similar to that one could state against the idea of having a "Anonymous Leader" arrested in Spain.

There is no defined leader in a swarm of birds, as they are not really a group; they just coincidently fly together into the same direction. If you are interested in such logical rule-based swarm "auto"-coordination, check out the Sanderling, which is a little bird occupying many seasides. You will see hunt through flat waters in something that looks like "groups" of birds, but in reality, those are not at all tied together, and just coincidently appear in the same place at the same time doing the same thing.

Comment This is not really a "game", but media art. (Score 2, Insightful) 193

While the project is based upon a gaming engine, and is "set up" as a classical game, the whole intention of the project differs totally from what is widely found as the "definition of gaming". (which is: having fun by pushing buttons to move dumb objects on a screen)

The basic concept here is to use a computer game as a media or communication platform, to use it educationally - and to use it to make people remember the BAD things that happened in history.

And you know, it works. People here in germany did not discuss the Mauer shootings for several years on such a broad base for years, and now it's all over public media again - which is basically even MORE than the author of the work could have hoped to gain with it, but it was exactly what was on his mind - maybe on a smaller scale.

In general, it's time that public opinion recognizes games as more than "a funnny thing to relax". It's an art form, it's about communication, socializing, and live in general. The understanding of a "game concept" finally has to change, but I think this will come with the next generations, who understand a "computer game" not only as an evolved version of "Pong".

Comment Definitely a new record on summary mistakes. (Score 4, Informative) 197

Well yes, we *have* problems with censorship and freedom in germany (as probably any other country has these days), but this summary is so wrong it hurts really bad...

As mentioned in comments before:

- the internet censorship stuff has not been banned by President Köhler, he just did not sign immediately. He did later, but after an election and a shift in government partys, the law has been stopped by the new government

- the "violent video" thing has been discussed by many hardliners, but there never has been a broad support for that

- wikileaks was not "banned" or anything. The stupid domain owners just did not take the proper steps to keep the domain

So, one will find other, definitely even worse crimes against humanity in Germany, but this list is, well... sort of "outdated and overcome".

Oh, and on topic: the publishers have some valid points here, and we might see some regulations for Apple in Germany. Porn is not illegal here, mind you ;)

The iPad is l33t, anyway.

Comment I don't see any difference between software... (Score 2, Interesting) 123

... and hardware, here.

1. liability - so, you say, software does not lead to "liability"? No coder is liable for the code he writes? I don't think so. Just have a look at all those "no liability" clauses. And: yes, software - even OSS - can kill people. I'm pretty sure a lot of OSS software is responsibly for deaths in many wars taking place right now. So there really is no difference between an open licensed car and some OSS software - maybe operating IN that car.

2. cost - so, just because it's hardware, it is assumed that developing the hardware - with a big company "prospering" on it afterwords - is somehow different from software. I don't get why that is. It was never meant as "free as in beer" - there seems to be some misconception in this, yes.

Just because you can't touch the software, the implications for the programmer writing and open-licensing an OSS program are absolutely the same for a hardware developer.

Of course, building/prototyping hardware CAN be more expensive, but thinking of software development as "cheap" just because you can get a PC for ~$200 - yeah, well, no... not really.

Comment "Michelle Obama ape"... (Score 1) 783

... still does the trick. Ugly picture, though.

One remark:

> That includes racist bullshit too. Even if it is directed at the world's favorite US president's wife.

racism is very close to fascism, and that's not an opinion, it's a crime. But it's still not worth censoring the internet, in the opposite: you must be able to see "shit" if you want to fight it. If it's just unnoticed, it's still there. Like that hiding game you play with childs: closing your eyes really does not make yourself disappear - or the bad things existing in our world, for that matter.

Comment Anyone who is an iPhone "certified" dev... (Score 1) 782

... please download the source code, recompile it, and put it in the app store.

After all, this is not MUCH more than an ad campaign. Considering that the developers MIGHT be able to read, and might be able to understand what they read - I figured out that detail of the GPL a long time ago, without lawyers, and without asking slashdot.

Let's start with a version for $1.99, and maybe someone will release a $0.00 version lateron. I'm pretty sure that will happen, so:

please don't expect to much revenue.

Comment Re:From the original disgruntled developer (Score 1) 782

No, you can not retroactively "drop" the GPLv2. Of course you are free to stop distributing the program/binaries AND source code at any time you want, remove all the GPLv2 bits, recompile it (if there has been no contribution from other people, or the other people consent!) and distribute it as a non-free software. But:

1. this is not retroactively. All old spin-offs, copies, installations, source code instances keep free

2. there likely will be copies, it will hit slashdot, you get a Streisand effect, and it will be hosted in the old GPL version - TEN times. At least. ;)

This whole "oh my god he sells GPL'd software" is stupid and but-ugly. To pick up Linus' talking style. I like free software, but I also like it that people MIGHT try to earn money with it. If it fails as a business modell, because the don't put in any additional value, that's their problem, not mine.

All I need is the release of modified source code. If I want to rebuild and redistribute that program, I could.

Oh, btw: it would be VERY funny if some people actually having a Apple Developer iPhone Account would download and redistribute the program, say, for something between $0 and $2.99. Just to kill of this marketing farce.

Comment The original developer... (Score 1) 782

... should have READ the GPL in the first place. It's absolutely fine to charge for packaging/compiling/etc.

Of course you have to release the new source code under the GPL, and anyone might, after that, recompile it, and sell it for $0 - if he wants to.

Basically, that's exactly the same what Novell, RedHat, ... do. Just with one program, not with thousands. But it remains the same thing. And I - as a 'GPL2-developer' myself - also don't see any ethical problems. Of course, there are some legal tidbits about the "how to install it without a developers licence" - but that's similar to i.e. any program based upon a proprietary language/toolkit/... - and you actually CAN compile and install the program, given that you are a registered apple iPhone developer. That's not much different than buying M$ Visual Studio 2009 Professional (~$800).

I think those people who say otherwise

a) don't like Apple in general - and from a free software perspective there ARE things that are not nice in Cupertino, it is impossible to deny that

b) might feel betrayed by anyone who sells GPL software in any way, because the STILL did not get the "not free as in beer"-concept. Which is basically a shame.

Comment OK, hum, so if she had taken a picture of herself (Score 1) 1240

... topless at the beach and send it via eMail to her friends, she might go to jail.

If some asshole school teachers strip search her because of false accusation of another student (which in itself would be enough of a scandal), everything is just "fine"?

If that's the current state of the US of A's legislation, you are very much more f*cked than the europeans. And I thought we are bad off with all that internet censorship....

PS: sorry, I forgot. Topless at the beach, 13yo... don't think that would happen on a US beach, would it? Anyway.

Comment If she does not like it, she should not do it. (Score 1) 564

She should do what she likes, nothing else. If she talented and open-minded, she should be able to choose for herself - nothing to achieve by "useful suggestions".

Forcing someone into science just because she has talent to handle numbers is just stupid. I know very capable people who did what they like, which wasn't at all what their "feats" would have suggested, and they feel very lucky. On the other hand I also know students who had to fight for every exam, every grade, because the where not that talented or gifted or whatever - but they did it, because it was what they wanted to do - and they achieved what they wanted to do. And they are lucky.

And there are those gifted who rushed through academic career, but simply don't like what they do now for a living at all. They are those who are unlucky.

What counts, after all? Luck, or money? I choose luck - it seems, natural, somehow.

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