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Comment Re:Just a higher tech version of what cops already (Score 2) 180

Ok, so first, if the crime doesn't happen, how do you know you prevented it? Maybe it just didn't happen.

You look not at one single crime but at the crime rate for a specific location and crime category. If the rate decreases after you start your prediction-based policing and the crime rate for this category does not increase in another area during the same time (interestingly this is one step proponents of public video surveillance very often happen to overlook), then your approach very likely has prevented such crimes in the targeted area.

Comment Re:Correct (Score 1) 87

Here in Germany every single "terrorist" put on trial since the German Autumn has been revealed to have had contact to at least one state agency, from state and federal police to the Verfassungsschutz (part of the intelligence conglomerate) to our two secret services, the Bundesnachrichtendienst (foreign intelligence) and Militärischer Abschirmdienst (domestic intelligence), including being funded, trained, "led". At the same time this happened right under the noses of all the aforementioned agencies. They cannot protect the public from three lowlives. But they can combat terrorism. Yeah, right.

In all seriousness: On the list of threats to my life, freedom and livelihood terrorism does not even make the top twenty.

Comment Re:So you're telling me (Score 1) 308

Having one offline client allows you to
  • search across all your e-mails at once,
  • manage one address book with all your contacts,
  • create and manage filter rules - often in ways that the dumbed-down web interfaces do not support - in one place,
  • use such "advanced" features as multiple identities for one account,
  • handle attachments in a sane way, often with integration to the local file system,
  • read your mail even if the Internet is unavailable - I have a local mail client on my smart phone precisely for this reason,
  • use all kinds of encryption or cryptographic signatures (I have not seen this in any web mail interface to date unless done in a browser addon),
  • use addons or extensions for specific needs that no commercial web mail provider would dream of implementing (mailing list management etc.).

Just off the top of my head.

Comment Re:Probably won't hurt anything......for now (Score 1) 378

[...] unless you host your own email server, you're relying on someone else to store your email anyway. Why not use the web interface? [...]

  1. Multiple accounts: I have 6 different e-mail accounts - private, work, university, volunteer organisation, throw-away account for online forums etc. Now I could use 6 different provider-offered web interfaces, each with its own set of issues, each with its own way of setting up filtering rules, or I could use one single offline client which allows me to search messages across all accounts, offers me one place to set up rules, offers me one spam and malware filter setup, offers me one single place to manage backups...
  2. Features: Not every web interface offers comprehensive folder management, multiple identities, fully configurable message lists... And no provider-hosted interface that I know of lets you install any kind of extensions or plug-ins if you need them. Mailing list managers come to mind. The majority of users will not need this, of course, but it is not an unheard-of requirement, either.
  3. Offline availability: Not that important anymore today on the desktop, but I do not always have internet connectivity with my laptop or phone.
  4. Usability: RoundCube is about the only web-based mail interface I find tolerable. Provider-offered interfaces universally suck for me. Yes, that includes GMail. Every one of them wants to be special by throwing all conventions out the window, most of them include more or less obnoxious ads, and many of them are quite clearly targeted at the "Internet = typing what I want to do into the Google search box" level user, hiding any "complexity", ie. every useful feature beyond opening a message and replying to it, behind a layer of utter retardation.
  5. Attachment handling: Sucks on almost every web interface I have used so far, with GMail being the one tolerable exception.

Comment Re:Probably won't hurt anything......for now (Score 1) 378

Sure. Unless you need any form of shared or synchronised address book. They never managed to get LDAP address books fully supported, and no word is out yet on any serious attempt to include CardDav and similar more modern replacements. By now it is not "merely" the corporate world that needs this: With people switching between their smart phones, tablets, laptops and desktops sharing basic information like contacts, appointments etc. seamlessly across all devices is not just a nice-to-have. And Thunderbird is sorely lacking in this regard.

Comment Re:Not very new. (Score 3, Interesting) 754

It depends very much on the individual kindergarten or school. The "Montessori way" is often fundamentally misapplied, resulting in kids that essentially do whatever they want whenever they want in whatever pace they want, which translates to an almost non-existent education. There are a few really good such schools, but I for one would rather not take that chance.

Comment Re:In other news: (Score 1) 484

Are you kidding? Gamers have been wanting XBOX Live style integration for Windows games for years.

Define "gamers". I have yet to meet any PC gamer who speaks of GfW LIVE and all the other supposed gaming features in Windows without drawing extensively on the not so nice parts of their mental lexicons.

Comment Re:Want offline maps? (Score 1) 179

It is not that simple, I am afraid. I love Osmand, but it still has a long way to go. Searching for street names in cities that have been divided into districts - there are numerous examples in Germany (try Munich) and apparently Russia - is broken, offline routing fails more than it works. I enjoy the map display, and with an online routing service it is quite useful, but as a purely offline solution Osmand is not ready yet.

Comment Re:mac (Score 1) 732

You're suggesting a 15" 1366x768 that weighs 5.4 pounds and is made of plastic. A Macbook Air is a 13" 1440x900 that weighs 2.96 pounds and has a metal case. [...]

Disregarding the weight, I have seen an MBA go dead after a drop from a common work desk, while my ThinkPad T-60, bought refurbished, has survived 4 years in emergency services and disaster relief. I have stopped counting the drops and bangs. The case is scratched, of course, and the keyboard looks its part. But nothing is broken, deformed or lost its functionality. So I suggest you look beyond the mere material of a laptop at how it performs in the real world.

Comment Re:mac (Score 1) 732

It will run any OS you like.

This comes up quite often in this discussion. The only current mainstream desktop OS available for x86 that will not run on anything but a Mac is OS X. And that is not due to the technical superiority of Macs but legal restrictions Apple has put on it.

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