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DRM: How Book Publishers Failed To Learn From the Music Industry 212

Presto Vivace writes "In a blog post, danps explains how the music industry initially thought that the Internet meant that people wanted their music for free. In 2003 Apple persuaded the industry to use an online music store with DRM. But DRM just does not work for consumers, so by 2011 online music stores were DRM-free. Sadly, the book industry has not learned these lessons. And there are larger lessons for the gadget industry: 'The tech industry right now is churning out lots of different devices, operating systems and form factors in an attempt to get the One True Gadget — the thing you'll take with you everywhere and use for everything. That's a lovely aspiration, but I don't see it happening. What I see instead is people wanting to only carry around one thing at a time, and rotating through several: Smart phone for everyday use, tablet for the beach, laptop for the road, etc. If you can't get the book you paid for on each of those devices, it's a pain. As a reader I want to be able to put a book on everything as soon as I buy it so I always have a local (non-Internet dependent) copy — no matter which thing I run out of the house with.'"

Bitcoin's Success With Investors Alienates Earliest Adopters 158

holy_calamity writes "Digital currency Bitcoin is gaining acceptance with mainstream venture capitalists, reports Technology Review, but at the price of its famed anonymity and ability to operate without central authority. Technology investors have now ploughed millions of dollars into a handful of Bitcoin-based payments and financial companies that are careful to follow financial regulations and don't offer anonymity. That's causing tensions in the community of Bitcoin enthusiasts, some of whom feel their currency's success has involved abandoning its most important features."

Water Isolated for Over a Billion Years Found Under Ontario 207

ananyo writes "Scientists working 2.4 kilometers below Earth's surface in a Canadian mine have tapped a source of water that has remained isolated for at least a billion years. The researchers say they do not yet know whether anything has been living in it all this time, but the water contains high levels of methane and hydrogen — the right stuff to support life. Micrometer-scale pockets in minerals billions of years old can hold water that was trapped during the minerals' formation. But no source of free-flowing water passing through interconnected cracks or pores in Earth's crust has previously been shown to have stayed isolated for more than tens of millions of years (paper abstract)."
The Courts

Irish Judge Orders 'The Internet' To Delete Video 243

New submitter edanto writes "A young Irish man wrongly accused of jumping from a taxi without paying the fare has secured a judgement from an Irish court ordering the video removed from the entire Internet. Experts from Google, Youtube, Facebook, and others must tell the court in two weeks if this is technically possible. The thing is, the video is accurate, it is only a comment that wrongly identified Eoin McKeogh as the fare-jumper in the video that is inaccurate. It's not clear if the judge has made any orders about the comment."

Submission + - Adding forums to a website, what is the best way?

DustyMurray writes: "I am considering adding forums to my website, and am just getting confused by all the options. My first reaction is always DIY. You get better website integration, and it looks and feels 100% how you want it to look and feel. However looking at things like phpBB and Vanilla forums, I will be hard pressed to build a better user experience in a reasonable amount of time. Also these out-of-the-box solutions seem to be shouting "Easy to integrate with your website". So, considering this, how easy are these ready build forums really to integrate in your website. I remember one of my favorite site, going completely blabla when they started to use a generic forum instead. I even stopped going to them after a while... I definitely do not want that for my site.... So I want things like, looks and feels in integral part of the rest of my site. Want to be able to insert stuff on certain pages, so it's not either the forums, or my site... It must be a mix. And I do not want a second login system on my site. And last but not least, I definitely don't want to have this typical generic look that most forums sport, they just reek "out-of-the-box-very-vanilla".... So can all that be delivered with the out-of-the-box forums that exist today? And which one is the most flexible regarding these wishes."

Comment Re:Say what? (Score 1) 433

I've never met one of these mythical windows fanboys. Can someone point out to me where they are?

Actually, read any story about Apple, Mac, or OS X on The Register and chances are the Windows Fanbois and Microsoft Apologists will be out in force making disparaging comments. Especially if the article points out a flaw.

(To be fair, the Mac Fanbois tend to do the same thing in Windows or Microsoft articles, but you weren't asking about them.)

Comment Re:My $.02 (Score 1) 507

Hum... I don't fully agree with these arguments. I for one have an old IBM Thinkpad 486DX4 notebook, 24MB RAM, 512MB HD. It is still running Slackware 7.1, being able to decode MP3 through mpg123 and madplay. I'm running Xfree 3.x, FVWM or Blackbox, I can surf the Internet on Netscape 3.x and edit docs using Maxwel Editor. I'm not concerned about "security" here because it is not connected so often, and even though, I don't keep important information stored here. A 486 is a terrible thing to waste...

Comment Re:Canada (Score 1) 253

That's a great resource, thanks for posting it.

I read Bell Canada's history up to about 1905 and then skimmed onward from there. It did indeed become a monopoly through government mandated favoritism and also through some exclusivity contracts with the railways and aggressive marketing that would probably be illegal today. I couldn't find anything that suggested federal money was used for its networks in a direct way though.

Comment Re:Another success. (Score 5, Insightful) 106

At the least, we need to know if we can replicate fully the features and functions of embryonic stem cells. We'll need embryonic stem cells for that purpose alone. If adult stem cells don't work completely like embryonic stem cells, that means that we may need a supply of embryonic stem cells indefinitely as well.

Comment Re:Not a right (Score 1) 875

I'll rephrase the last part of my statement for clarity: "... then that eradication is morally right?"

Do I think so? No, but that wouldn't stop it happening if enough people wanted it to. While I don't think murder is morally acceptable, I can't provide a fundamental reason for that belief - I consider it axiomatic. I just wish everyone else were as realistic about the limitations of their philosophy.

The fact that some people commit murders is not evidence that murder is morally right. By the same logic, the fact that people's rights are often violated is not evidence that they don't have those rights.

No, but it is evidence that rights are not something fundamental to the universe, but instead reliant on active enforcement. Things which are fundamental and independent of human society, such as the laws of physics, cannot be violated even if everyone agrees to. People's rights, on the other hand, can, suggesting that they are not in fact fundamental and the whole concept of "natural" rights is a bit silly, really.

Comment Re:Hinder development? Riiiiight.... (Score 1) 239

fetishization of homeownership raised the default rate among the poorest buyers, who should have been renting

The poor should be renting and paying someone else's mortgage as well as paying them profits instead of paying their own mortgage? I can see renting when home prices are skyrocketing or if the renter is only going to be there a short period, but that's it. If you rent someone else is profiting off of you.

Are you seriously telling me that the mighty US financial industry lost hundreds of billions because of a modest, and highly predictable, increase in default rates of relatively small loans, often government backed, to known credit risks? Was that all it took?

Too many lenders made mortgages for more than borrowers could reasonable afford, I don't expect borrowers to know how much they can afford any more than the bank that lends them money, banks are supposed to be the experts. It didn't help that government encouraged mortgage companies to make those mortgages. Building regulations don't help keep cost down either, and may drive costs up.


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