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Comment Put it on the coffee table (Score 1) 109

That's one mistake Nintendo made with the NES Classic; people have bigger TVs and control them from further away than when the original console was new.

Consoles with short controller cables and long video cables are intended to sit on your coffee table. This was true of the original Family Computer, and it remains true of the NES Classic. In Japan they have a habit of putting a small space heater under the coffee table, with a comforter to direct the heat to the seating.

Comment No plug-in for Atari carts (Score 1) 109

why can't really just buy the [cartridges] and use your own emulators??

Because sometimes the console makers decide to sue manufacturers and sellers of game cartridge readers for contributory copyright infringement because the devices let users make infringing copies of first-party games and of third-party games containing a statically linked copy of the console maker's standard library. Remember Lik Sang?

Or because the Retrode doesn't have a plug-in for Atari 2600/7800, 5200, XEGS, Lynx, or Jaguar cartridges.

Comment Can't distribute handheld games without DRM (Score 1) 124

The supplier chose to use DRM. It's entirely the supplier's fault.

How is it the supplier's fault when all relevant means of delivering a work to the public use digital restrictions management? For example, in the market of video games for handheld devices with physical buttons, both viable platforms (PlayStation Vita and Nintendo 3DS) require use of DRM. The only widely used handheld video game platform that allows DRM-free distribution is Android, which allows the user to temporarily allow installation of APK files from unknown sources. But the problem with Android as a platform is that the vast majority of devices have a touch screen as their only input device, and though a touch screen is ideal for point-and-click genres and games whose control is limited to a single jump button (such as the many SFCave clones), it's not quite so ideal for something in the vein of a run-and-gun or an Igavania.

And in the market for high-definition movies on disc, Blu-ray Disc players will refuse to play movies without AACS.

Comment Taking the Fifth (Score 1) 124

For this post I define "property" as "that which is subject to an exclusive right".

Compulsory licensing is a more difficult question. In theory it might be a good thing, but in practice I am wary of requiring anyone to surrender the control they have of their work by law

In Slashdot's home country, the owner of an exclusive right in a particular property, be it land or a work of authorship, has a Fifth Amendment right to "just compensation" for public use of the property. Constitutionally, a work can enter the eminent domain before it enters the public domain, and "control" doesn't enter into it. Once an author has been compensated enough to cover the cost of producing a work plus enough profit to cover the uncertainty of its becoming popular, what is the use of "control" anyway, other than in preventing competition?

without also providing real enforcement of their rights at government expense.

In Slashdot's home country, there are already criminal penalties for commercial infringement of copyright on a substantial scale.

Comment Re:Learning programming (Score 1) 202

In the case of PPC's, root the thing and boom

Good luck for someone who's just beginning to learn how to program to learn how to root an iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad. And even on a device that runs Android, a root often means a full wipe.

in case of Android PPC's, you got full linux distro and compilers at your fingertips, literally.

You are referring to things like the "GNURoot Debian" and "XSDL" apps, right?

No sympathy for iPhone people, you bought into the walled garden.

If a child received an iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad as a gift from parents or other relatives, how exactly did he or she "buy in"?

Comment PayPal is rated 18+ (Score 1) 303

Another issue is how do I pay my neighbor kid to mow my lawn with a credit card?


That won't work. From the PayPal TOS: "For an individual to open a U.S. PayPal account and use the PayPal services, you must be a resident of the United States or one of its territories and at least 18 years old, or the age of majority in your state of residence."

Gift cards?

But how would a child make change for an unopened $50 gift card, or even quickly verify that a particular gift card contains the balance the buyer claims it to contain?

Comment Square card reader is rated 18+ (Score 1) 303

[Neighbor kid] gets one of those Square card readers and plugs ut into his iPhone.

That won't work. Square's TOS states: "You represent and warrant to us that: (a) you are at least eighteen (18) years of age". This means the only Square thing a child can buy for an iPhone is a Final Fantasy game.

Comment Think of the unbanked children (Score 1) 303

Discriminates against the poor!
Too poor to put $1 in a credit union account to get a debit card? What cash?

How about "too young"?

Children are excluded by definition from official definitions of the unbanked because they often are prohibited from holding a bank or credit union account in their own name. But children feel the same practical problems as the unbanked. Even 18-year-olds may not yet have a utility bill in their own name to establish their identity for purposes of "Know Your Customer" regulations that banks and credit unions are obligated to follow. This means a child would end up spending 10 percent extra on Visa gift card issuance fees in order to buy anything else.

3. Businesses will raise prices to cover higher costs.
They already take plastic.

Children who mow lawns or watch your younger children do not take plastic. Lawn care and babysitting are among the few jobs available to children under 16 under applicable child labor laws.

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