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Submission + - Restaurant uses social media to exclude patrons (

RevWaldo writes: From Gothamist: Five former employees of Bowlmor Lanes in New York have filed a lawsuit against Strike Holdings CEO Tom Shannon, claiming he used social media outlets to keep minorities from making reservations at "one of the city’s hottest and most compelling nightlife venues." The suit claims Shannon met with top executives after "incidents" at Bowlmor's restaurant, Carnival, "to discuss possible ways to exclude certain people...such as African-Americans, Asians and Latinos."...The suit claims the workers were asked to look up prospective patrons on Facebook and MySpace to see how they looked and dressed and where they lived. If they didn't fit the Bowlmor customer ideal, they didn't get a reservation.

Submission + - U2 Manager Says Anonymous Bloggers Killing Music ( 3

An anonymous reader writes: U2's manager Paul McGuinness has followed up on his previous attacks on music fans, with a column in GQ where he claims that blaming the record labels for their own problems is a mistake. Instead, we should blame the notion of "free" and some horde of anonymous bloggers. Thankfully, some have gone through the details of his writeup and have found a sever lack of truthfulness on the part of McGuinness' claims. But what do I know? I'm just an anonymous blogger...

Submission + - Want to feel old even if you're not? Read this. (

crimeandpunishment writes: Phones with cords? What are those? E-mail? It's way too slow. The annual Beloit College Mindset List is out....showing what pop culture and technology items are ancient history to incoming college students. 75 items are on this year's list. Dirty Harry, Beavis & Butthead, and the hot potato over Dan Quayle's spelling gaffe? All were big deals....but not to this year's college freshman class.

Comment Re:Another industry F/OSS has killed. (Score 1) 569

A powerful graphics suite does not make one a skilled graphic designer. Look at it from the other side: now you don't need to spend thousands or tens of thousands of dollars on a formal education to find out if you have what it takes to be a designer.

If this continues, you will not see a single person their [sic] who has a degree above a high school diploma.

If that is true, then all it means is that training beyond a HS diploma does not add value to a designer's work.

There will always be people and/or companies that demand top quality design. So the best designers will always have work. It is the Ok to good designers who have to worry as the mass of market entrants start cranking out work that is "good enough".

Comment Re:Expectation of privacy (Score 1) 132

Today, a hobbyist could easily build an autonomous surveillance robot the size of a small rodent that has everything it needs to capture sound and audio and either store the resulting feed or stream it to a server somewhere. In 20 more years, how much smaller than "rodent" do you think that robot could be?

Interesting idea, although entirely irrelevant to the discussion. 20 years ago, a hobbyist could easily install hidden cameras throughout your home, office, gym locker room, wherever. The fact that the technology was available didn't make it legal then, doesn't make it legal now, and won't make it legal in the future.

It is not the technology you should be worried about, it is the erosion of rights against unlawful search (including surveillance) and seizure you need to watch out for.

Comment Re:Republican (Score 1) 574

Wait, who's guilty of false equivalence? Because looking back over this thread, it seems like somehow you are going from a few stats above about gays and creationism to public flogging for viewing bikini pictures at work. Personally, I don't see how you connect the dots between the two. And yes, I did check out many links from the google searches you suggested -- plenty of name-calling, but not much beyond that.

Comment Re:Depends on the output (Score 2, Insightful) 146

Agreed. I think eventually, we will see phones/pocket-sized devices with a "pico" projector and one of these built in. And as storage gets smaller and chips get more powerful, we will end up with an all-in-one device that can replace laptops/netbooks as well. We already have convergence of phone, digital camera, video camera, PDA, MP3 player, GPS, etc... One of the things that makes the iPad attractive (YMMV) is the larger screen. A pico projector can provide that in a smaller device.

Comment Re:Biofuels are the future. (Score 1) 139

This is the big problem with corn ethanol - it is energy negative!

Probably not. I suppose you could say it is open to debate, but the consensus seems to be for positive energy output with current methods. Also perhaps worth noting is that the parent commented on biofuels in general, whereas you focused in on one particular biofuel from a source that happens to be a bad idea pretty much all the way around. I can see the rationale for using surplus corn for ethanol if you have to use it (the surplus corn). But you're probably better off storing it until pricing/supply supports using it as some form of food or feed.

Better methods are coming along, though. Cellulosic ethanol seems promising since it can use non-food feedstock, including existing agricultural waste streams or switchgrass, kudzu or other fast-growing non-commercial plants. Biodiesel from jatropha or other non-food crops are still a possibility, especially where small scale production can work, but algae and pond scum have several advantages over plant crops, and there are companies working on commercial scale implementations now. There is also biodiesel from waste vegetable oil -- either processed, or just filtered and used as-is in slightly modded diesels. And then there is thermal deploymerization of agricultural waste into diesel/fuel oil, which has been going on commercially for a few years now.

Any or all of these can fit into our existing infrastructure, so as petroleum hydrocarbons become more expensive (and/or tech improves for the alternatives), they'll start to become players in the market.

Comment Re:Pussy. There, I said it. (Score 1) 643

That gets close, but based on Greenbaum's own explanation, there was no good faith belief of necessity "to protect against misuse or unauthorized use of our web sites". He did it: to teach the guy a lesson (it was a "teachable moment", in his words), because the poster meant to post it (he tried a second time, thus not an accident or momentary lapse of judgment), and because "it was easy". He even outlines other (better, IMO) steps he could have taken. But for the above reasons, he chose to reveal the user's info. Those reasons do not fit within the parameters set forth in the privacy policy, even as vague/loose/permissive as the policy is. "It's easier" is obviously not the same as "necessary".

I didn't read the whole TOS, but it seems they may be ok with respect to that document. But it doesn't change the fact that they violated the privacy policy.

Comment Re:Pussy. There, I said it. (Score 4, Insightful) 643

I mostly agree with you, but not this part:

The newspaper did the right thing.

Nope. Wrong. Aside from violating their own privacy policy, he (Greenbaum, the newspaper guy) went counter to the idea of anonymous commenting. If you want to be able to call someone out, don't allow anonymous posting. If an anonymous poster is being a nuisance (and one re-post probably should not qualify -- the poster could have assumed transmission error or some such) block his IP address.

Comment Re:Mod parent up... (Score 1) 1255

To quote from his original article "women's participation in FOSS development is over seventeen times lower than it is in proprietary software development." If that doesn't point to some systematic problem I don't know what does.

It does if you're comparing apples to apples. On the other hand, isn't FOSS development fundamentally different from proprietary development in many ways? I'd also like to know what "participation" means. Does it include sales? Marketing? Focus groups? project management? Certainly there are FOSS projects that have all those elements and proprietary shops that don't, but my anecdotal experience leads me to believe that those things tend to be thin for FOSS and are often well funded in companies making proprietary software.

I'm not saying there is no sexism, but the evidence offered seems rather thin -- some vague numbers and a couple of anecdotes. If this is a real problem, make a better case than that.

Comment Re:Seems fine to notify (Score 1) 304

It depends. It could be a good thing. Or if they use an overly broad interpretation of what might indicate virus or botnet activity, I could see it becoming a tool to shut down customers who just use a lot of bandwidth.

Plus, even if Comcast's intentions are good, it seems like a great way (for others) to phish. Think about it. Users are not used to seeing notices from comcast, but maybe they've heard about this initiative. So they get a pop-up saying "Comcast service notice. Your PC may be infected. Click here to go to our Anitvirus center". Then the user helpfully installs everything the site tells him to. How about an app that blocks the legitimate notices you're now getting from Comcast?

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