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Comment Re:Greedy publishers (Score 2, Insightful) 111

Booksurge is great for very niche products. I've bought some stuff that was published with them, that was great, but far, far from mainstream (Neopagan reconstructionism). One can see where a publisher's resources would help (higher rate of spelling errors), but overall, I think self-publishing like that is great for books with a very specific market.

That said, I agree with you that mainstream publishers aren't going anywhere. They do provide valuable services in terms of proofreading, editing and promotion, even if the actual printing aspect is likely to decline in importance.

Comment Vinyl DRM (Score 0, Troll) 405

Somewhere, there's a recording executive reading this article and planning on dispatching a team to try to retrofit DRM onto vinyl records somehow.

Which I imagine would be quite a feat for a purely analog medium.

Either that, or said executive is now more paranoid about the "analog hole" than ever before, and now believes that people are turning to vinyl to pirate music somehow.

Comment Re:What? (Score 5, Insightful) 246

Yep. Last I remember of Salon.com was sometime in 2000 or so, they had some decent stuff. Then the paywall went up ages ago, and I forgot they existed. Except for a few times throughout the decade where Google led me to an article of theirs, only to end up being blocked of by the paywall.

Half of me thinks this is just them screaming "LOOK WE DON'T HAVE A PAYWALL ANYMORE". That is, assuming they actually don't.

Comment Yes, I would (Score 1) 435

I would easily take a free netbook if it were offered. I'd mess around with it, if it was useful, I'd continue using it, if not, it would go in the big pile of laptops I've replaced but haven't gotten rid of yet. (Going back to a PowerBook 540c from 1994, IIRC).

However, I can't see the advertising or whatever actually making up for it, especially considering that a fair number of them wouldn't end up being used at all, and many would end up being used for strange purposes.

The last time I remember a company giving large amounts of free hardware away, to make it up with advertising, was the CueCat disaster. OTOH, the CueCat was pretty useless to begin with, and their company was based only on that junk, IIRC. Even if such an idea tanks, I'm sure google could eat a few billion in losses. Still, I really doubt such a thing will happen. Free netbooks just sound too good to be true.

Comment Re:Kyllo (Score 1) 297

Well, I guess that answers my question of whether Superman could legally gather evidence for the police using his X-Ray vision.

Good to know. Now I can stop lining my walls with lead and kryptonite.

Now, need to find a case relating to super-hearing.

Comment Re:Wait, what? (Score 1) 859

I agree with you on every count, it sounds very light to me. Though, if the Germans are happy with their law, I feel that's their business, and as a Canadian I don't feel it's my business to tell them how to run their own country, any more than they can try to tell us that we can't use their names.

Comment Re:I'll take one (Score 1) 168

Merely carry guns? What kind of protection is that?

I say, it should be mandatory to have a USB firearm attached to your computer. If it detects someone trying to steal the computer, someone getting the password wrong, or someone trying to install unwanted software, the computer will now have a way to defend itself. I think we'd all be safer in a world where every computer has a USB assault rifle attached to it.

Comment Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar (Score 4, Interesting) 263

When I was in University, I once had some leftist student try to convince me that Batman was evil, using a Marxist analysis. That is, he's a rich man, who tries to keep the poor of Gotham down under his boot by going out at night, scaring beating the crap out of the proletariat for daring to stand up to him and his exploitive, capitalist parents.

While rather amusing (I don't think he was fully serious, I hope), the truth is, you can see whatever as a metaphor/representation/whatever of anything you want, but at the end of the day, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

Zombies are cool cause they eat people. That's my analysis.

Comment Vishing, MiFi (Score 1) 192

Ack, with headlines shouting about Vishing and MiFi, two words I've never heard of, for possibly the first time in my life I feel out of the loop and too old for all these newfangled words, at 22. :-(

My first thought was that MiFi was a form of WiFi for Nintendo Miis, but that can't possibly be right...

Comment Re:I don't see why this is a problem (Score 2, Interesting) 136

My experience is somewhat different, but mostly because the only online game I've played really is WoW.

In my experience in WoW, kids have been a real mixed bag. Some of the better players I've had in guilds have been 12-14, and so have some of the worst. In general, once someone is known to be a little kid, the ventspeak gets somewhat less "mature". It always feels weird, though, when you know your tank is 12 or so, even if he's doing a great job.

I suppose my server (Lightninghoof) tends to be pretty good communitywise. Sure we have our share of dickheads, but much less than other servers I've played on. Probably because we're an RP server, for what that's worth.

Comment Re:Not in Canada (Score 1) 145

how well will it work in Canada?

I am not a Canadian, but I wouldn't count on the product working well, given that Amazon suppresses digital content to anybody they don't happen to care for. Australia currently falls into this category; digital copies of books are unavailable where Amazon is perfectly happy to sell you a dead-tree version.

I happen to prefer the latter, but for some texts, it would be nice to forego the exorbitant US freight costs.

To be fair, I really doubt it's that they have an axe to grind against Australians. More likely is some annoying conflicts with Australian laws, publishers, organisations and/or cell phone companies. It really wouldn't be a smart decision to not release content to Australia because a dingo ate Bezos' baby or he was molested by a Kangaroo or something.

Same as Canada. I'm sure they want to have my money, but are either waiting for our (terrible) phone companies to stop sucking, or some conflict with Canadian publishers or laws. (For all I know, my country probably has some law forcing ebooks to have 30% "Canadian Content" or something equally stupid.)

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