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Comment Re:Parking tickets (Score 2, Interesting) 291

Parking tickets should be backed up with photographs anyways, taken by the ticket-writer.

There's hundreds of years of jurisprudence based on the idea that an eyewitness account of an alleged act, delivered by a person bound by oath to be truthful, can be accepted by the court as evidence supporting the alleged act. Why would you want to reverse that?

Taken to a logical end, wouldn't this also mean that rapists, murderers, and kidnappers would walk free if none of the witnesses to their crimes happened to have a cameraphone handy at the right moment?

If you get ticketed, you're always free to take your own photographs of the scene and bring them to court with you when you contest the ticket.

Comment Re:No oldies (Score 1) 254

That may be the accepted definition now, but [Operation Wolf is] unarguably a shooting game played in the 1st person.

It's also far, far from the first game of its type, its 1987 release date coming a full fifty years after electronic/mechanical hybrid shooting games like the Seeburg Ray-O-Lite.

Comment Re:Ok (Score 1) 290

iso format has real checksums. redbook audio does not. that's why 'ripping' is not accurate and can't be, by definition.

And it depends on how you define accuracy, doesn't it?

Yes, you can read the same block off a Red Book audio CD ten times and never get the same sequence of 1s and 0s twice -- but how much does it really matter if a given 1/44100th of a second of an audio signal is represented as 0xF2A6 vs. 0xF2A7? Or even 0x0000 vs. 0xF2A7?

they screwed up the original cd format. its not robust and its not reliable.

It was designed based on what was practical to achieve with the affordable consumer electronics technology of the late 1970s. In that context, it's pretty impressive that the fidelity ceiling that they were able to achieve is STILL considered "good enough" by most accounts today, 30 years later.

Comment Re:Actual complaint: (Score 1) 644

they patented such things like:
"Vehicle Computer System with Wireless Connectivity"
"Portable Computing Device-Integrated Appliance"
[...] Most of this crap shouldn't have been patentable in the first place

Oh goody, another discussion of patent law on Slashdot by people who are not well informed about it...

The content of a patent is more than its title. Microsoft did not and can not patent the entire idea of a "Vehicle Computer System with Wireless Connectivity", only a specific implementation thereof. One actually has to read the entire patent document and study all the diagrams to actually understand what it is that Microsoft is claiming a patent on.

Comment Re:I would love (Score 1) 498

The court doesn't explore your expertise, and doesn't know if you're qualified. You might be a world-renowned bacteriologist, or you might be a guy who has a 20 year old doctorate in biology back when they only taught the "tail theory of classifying salmonella" or whatever.

Have you never served on a jury? The first thing the attorneys on both sides will do during jury selection is say to the prospective jurors, "this court case involves salmonella poisoning. If any of you have a background in biology studies, even if it was just high school coursework, please raise your hand now."

Neither side WANTS an expert juror to hear the case, because of the risk that he or she would discourage the other jurors from agreeing with the carefully orchestrated expert testimony that they will be incorporating into their argument.

Comment Re:Too bad "being an asshole" is not a crime (Score 1) 498

Yours or not, it is not possible (generally) to legally immediately remove someone from a residence they have been in for some time (provided that person has not broken any other laws).

So Childs was the tenant, and the network was his primary residence? I guess since he had been paid to maintain it, that would make him a live-in superintendent?

I think this analogy is starting to veer off-topic. There's a reason why usually stick with car-based analogies, everybody.

Comment Re:Too bad "being an asshole" is not a crime (Score 1) 498

Its not like its all that hard to do password recovery on most infrastructure equipment.

If I remember the story correctly, the city brought in consultants from Cisco to do password recovery analysis on the systems after Childs refused to relinquish the passwords.

Wanna ballpark the amount of the consultancy bill that the city was ultimately presented with?

Comment Re:Too bad "being an asshole" is not a crime (Score 1) 498

what about a situation where the plaintiff [sic] claims to have forgotten the password?

Well, the courts would have to evaluate the veracity of such a claim. If the password was an essential part of the guy's job duties, and he had to make use of it on a daily basis during his employment there, it's pretty clear that if he says "I forgot" immediately afterward, he's lying. And that could result in perjury charges.

Comment Re:Too bad "being an asshole" is not a crime (Score 1) 498

To think of this another way, you might not have a problem giving up your Social Security number and debit card PIN number to a bank employee while you're in their office conducting business, but if there were a half-dozen other people in the office too, listening to the conversation, you would certainly think differently.

Your SSN and PIN are data that authenticate YOUR identity, and if compromised could cause harm to come to YOU.

How would the ex-administrator have been harmed, personally, if some untrusted third party learned the passwords to a system for which he no longer had a bit of responsibility, and in fact was barred from?

Comment Re:What the hell is "AP"? (Score 3, Funny) 169

That being said, you're absolutely right. The full, unabbreviated name should have been in there at least once.

Indeed. I'd quote the relevant passage from the AP Stylebook regarding the use of abbreviations, but they seem to have locked it up behind a paid-content wall.

Take THAT, thriving black market for standard news industry reference materials!

Comment Re:Sounds like a great industrial espionage device (Score 5, Insightful) 464

... because wall warts with a tail plugged into the nearest network port wouldn't attract any kind of attention.

Was that intended to be sarcastic?

How much time do YOU spend analyzing at the rat's nest of cabling located under your desk, where the Linksys wireless router and the three daisy-chained power strips live? Less than an hour per year, if you're anything like me.

I would dare say that an espionage device that disguised itself as a wall wart would be more likely to be discovered based on network analysis ("hold up, what's this device with the unfamiliar MAC off of network port 73?") than based on a visual inspection of the site.

Comment Re:Its like watching an animal drown (Score 1) 425

Well imagine if a printing company decided that they were going to print and distribute your magazine or newspaper for free.

Why, the only way that you'd continue to be justly compensated for your work is if a framework existed in law wherein you would sell the RIGHT to COPY your work to specific printing companies, and any other company would be in violation of the law!

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