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Comment Re:Assumes a centralized DNS system (Score 1) 89

Your analogy is flawed. IRC is nothing like the web. As you said, IRC is a decentralized network. There are connections between the servers. "The web" doesn't exist - it's just a bunch of servers that have no connection to each other. The IRC split just referred to other people starting their own IRC networks. Maybe you meant to compare IRC to DNS, which is a giant network of sorts. I think a DNS split is very unlikely, though. There's little benefit to having a single giant IRC network, but obvious benefit to having a single DNS network, without which the whole Internet basically gets fragmented, from a usability standpoint.

Comment Re:This use of CAN-SPAM is unconstitutional (Score 1) 319

Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom ... to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

I assume this is the part you're referring to, but I don't agree with your interpretation. I don't think petitioning "the government" in this case means that harrassing one government official in particular is necessarily Constitutionally protected behavior.

Comment Re:First Amendment (Score 2, Insightful) 319

If Thompson's bill was worth supporting before, then his bill should still be worth supporting after annoying e-mails, spam or for all I care: murder.

Clearly you don't understand how the Senate works. Bills need support to pass, regarldess of their content. People make deals to support each other's bills. Having friends in your court is crucial if you want to get anything passed. Is this right? Maybe not, but that's how it is, and it's not exactly a secret. For more information, I suggest reading Fight Club Politics, available at your local library.

Comment Re:You're a fucking moron. (Score 1) 319

"But all that means is that the CAN-SPAM act isn't the appropriate law to attack him with: instead, the Senator should just go for plain-old harassment" did you not understand, dumbass?

I think the part he was actually responding to was "Spam is commercial email. This is email about a pending legislative action, and thus Jack Thompson has the right to send it because he has a right to free speech." Spam isn't necessarily commercial, and no he doesn't. The fact that the CAN-SPAM act in particular may not apply doesn't change the widely accepted definition of spam.

Comment Re:x86-only (Score 1) 96

Windows has troubles with 64-bit and seems to be avoiding it.

I don't think this has been true for years. And the only problems I recall were some hardware vendors not putting out 64-bit drivers, but they seem to be on board now.

Linux does as well, but much less so.

What the hell are you talking about?

Comment Re:Where do free items fit in? (Score 1) 194

Blaming Disney is a distraction. Focus on the real source of the problem. It's the same thing as blaming movie studios for not letting you watch a film on a non-HDCP display, when in fact it is the operating system (Windows Vista or Mac OS X) that enforces this restriction on you.

This goes both ways. No one is forcing Disney to use the "disable skip" feature. HDCP is required by the hardware (at least for Blu-Ray). Who do you think pushes for things like HDCP? The studios. Yes, that includes Disney. The operating systems wouldn't enforce these restrictions if the media companies weren't pushing for them.


Paper Ballots Will Return In MD and VA 420

cheezitmike writes "According to a story in the Washington Post, 'Maryland and Virginia are going old school after Tuesday's election. Maryland will scrap its $65 million electronic system and go back to paper ballots in time for the 2010 midterm elections. In Virginia, localities are moving to paper after the General Assembly voted last year to phase out electronic voting machines as they wear out. "The battle for the hearts and minds of voters on whether electronic systems are good or bad has been lost," Brace said. The academics and computer scientists who said they were unreliable "have won that battle."'"

Attack Code Found For Recent Windows Bug 184

CWmike writes "Just a day after downplaying the vulnerability that caused it to issue an out-of-cycle patch last week, Microsoft warned customers late yesterday that exploit code had gone public and was being used in additional attacks. 'We've identified the public availability of exploit code that now shows code execution for the vulnerability addressed by MS08-067,' said Mike Reavey, operations manager of Microsoft's Security Response Center, in a post to the MSRC blog. 'This exploit code has been shown to result in remote code execution on Windows Server 2003, Windows XP, and Windows 2000.'"
The Courts

Judge Tells RIAA To Stop 'Bankrupting' Litigants 332

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "The Boston judge who has consolidated all of the RIAA's Massachusetts cases into a single case over which she has been presiding for the past 5 years delivered something of a rebuke to the RIAA's lawyers, we have learned. At a conference this past June, the transcript of which (PDF) has just been released, Judge Nancy Gertner said to them that they 'have an ethical obligation to fully understand that they are fighting people without lawyers ... to understand that the formalities of this are basically bankrupting people, and it's terribly critical that you stop it ...' She also acknowledged that 'there is a huge imbalance in these cases. The record companies are represented by large law firms with substantial resources,' while it is futile for self-represented defendants to resist. The judge did not seem to acknowledge any responsibility on her part, however, for having created the 'imbalance,' and also stated that the law is 'overwhelmingly on the side of the record companies,' even though she seems to recognize that for the past 5 years she has been hearing only one side of the legal story."

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