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Comment Re:App stores (Score 1) 266

The terms of the GPL predate the AppStore by a couple decades or so, and the AppStore terms were written in ways to be contrary to the GPL, so it's the AppStore's problem. Anyone who receives a GPL binary must be able to redistribute it. If they aren't able to do so, that's a GPL violation. Anyone who distributes a GPL binary must include source or an offer that allows the recipient to get the source from the distributor. Apple could have built the AppStore in such a way that binaries for GPL apps could be redistributed and source could be distributed, but they chose not to. Every Linux distribution's RPM or dpgk or tgz repository does so. Are Apple programmers that incapable, or does Apple just feel the need to control everything their users do?

You do realize, of course, that VLC uses GPL libraries, so it doesn't matter what one VLC programmer thinks. They need to get the permission of every contributor to every library that VLC uses and every contributor to VLC to agree to change the license to one that is AppStore compatible. Not going to happen, so one of the many prices that Apple customers pay for Apple's draconian Terms of Service is no VLC. Ever.

As an aside, the licenses of VLC and FFMPEG are among the most violated. Search for video capture or video editing or video format conversion or dvd ripping software online, and it will probably be a bad GUI over ffmpeg or VLC. And they'll charge you $50 for a one year license, and they won't offer access to the source, or even tell you that ffmpeg or VLC is there. And you'll send you $50 to the Ukranian mafia or the Russian mafia or a Nigerian scam artist rather than sending $5 to VLC or FFMPEG. Do you understand why some people don't like license violations?

Comment Re:App stores (Score 1) 266

At least spell Berkeley right. Most of us at Berkeley think the BSD license sucks, and either use the highest applicable GPL revision allowed by libraries we're linking in, LGPL when necessary, or a proprietary license when we think a company is going to buy the copyright to something very specific to their business, but without widespread application.

GPL is very useful when you know someone is going to try to patent your work a decade from now and assumes nobody can use Google for a prior art search. I've also seen it to be useful in "non-compete clause" cases (which are illegal in California anyway). "If you didn't consider it competition for him to work on this GPL project when you were paying him, how could it be competition now that the project itself is paying him?"

The University has great lawyers, and I'm happy to have never been on the opposite side of table.

Comment Re:App stores (Score 1) 266

Well, you could release it for iOS, but you couldn't provide any way for somebody to run it on an apple product without violating the iOS development terms. Anyone who did modify it in a way that would allow it to run could not distribute the modified binary.

I could release a random binary blob under the GPL, too. It it wouldn't be much use to anyone.

Comment Re:App stores (Score 1) 266

You all need to read the license more carefully. Some of the most important freedoms the GPL gives you is the freedom to redistribute the unmodified binary and the freedom run it on other devices, both of are denied by the the App Store store. Another problem is that the terms of GPL v2 would force Apple to be the distributor of the source code because Apple is the distributor of the binary and the distribution is commercial. (Apple could only distribute the offer of the author to provide source in the case of non-commercial distribution, GPL v2 Sec 3.c). I wouldn't even be surprised if the App Store terms make it a violation to allow a source offer displayed on an iPhone screen to be transferred to a third party.

Comment I'm guessing that would change... (Score 1) 1040

if fine for traffic violations and petty crimes were proportional to income or net worth like they are in some Scandinavian countries. I doubt Steve Jobs would have been parking in handicapped spaces if the fine had been $25M. For $250, its not worth the trouble for a cop to write the ticket and get fired over. For $25M, the crime involved in firing the officer becomes more severe, and the local politicians might not mind seeing that kind of extra cash rolling in.

Comment Re:Yes (Score 3, Interesting) 1040

Here's one blog about it. But it's not a big deal. I don't know of tech billionaire that isn't an asshole.

Jobs biggest talent was in being the second mouse. You know the saying the "The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese." He would let another company do the inventing, build the new product, take the risks. Then if the product failed, Steve would know why and build a product with fewer flaws and capture the market. If the earlier product didn't fail Steve would build one incrementally better and use the reality distortion field to capture the market. Either way, nobody knows the earlier product existed.

The tech editor for Scientific American wrote a column for the February issue. It was supposed to be about products that fail or succeed some of which are predicted in fiction. Every "successful" product he listed was from Apple. Every failure was from competitors. Examples of failures were the Zune and the IBM PC. The point seemed to be that the iPad was destined for success because there were pad newspaper readers in sci fi and the iPad was obviously the first pad computer and nobody has ever built a pad style device specifically for reading.

Comment Re:Easy is easy (Score 1) 147

In a land where states charge $50 for a printout of a birth certificate, you somehow think conservatives are going to make a government service free? Not going to happen. And what happens when the middle name on my proof of residence (i.e. drivers license) doesn't exactly match the middle name on birth certificate. Well, that's the point, conservatives want such people purged from the voter rolls. Along with anyone whose name matches a convicted felon. If you name is common, expect to be purged.

Of course you'll say it's all about preventing foreigners from voting. But most states enacting these law allow a drivers license as proof of residence for both voting and registering to vote. And every single state in the union allows resident aliens to get a drivers license. And, for some reason, the same people who want ID to be presented in order to vote, don't want a voter registration form to be included with drivers license or car registration renewal. (Oh, that's right. Keep the registration forms away from poor people. That's what the whole ACORN thing was about.)

The system in this state, with address verification when registering, and a signature for comparison when voting, is entirely adequate. It makes it hard enough to vote multiple times. Aliens claiming to be citizens would need to sign a paper, what when verified could get them arrested. But nobody is being arrested for such crimes, because the don't happen. (Although some cities allow resident aliens to vote on local issues, the resident aliens get a different ballot.)

You're complaining about crimes aren't happening, and ignoring the ones that do. Blackwell in 2004 moved most of the voting machines out of minority districts in Ohio and into wealthy white districts. Of course he did so long lines would cause frustrated minorities to give up rather than wait for four or more hours to vote. That's the kind of election fraud that really happens, affecting thousands of voters. It's a lot easier to throw an election that way than it would be to have people vote in multiple precincts.

Comment Re:Always a niche (Score 0) 317

There are a lot of kid that learn quickly and easily that still need the crap beat out of them.

I think the teachers should keep track of which children have been beaten. Then at the end of the year, they should take all the rest into the gymnasium and beat the crap out of them while the rest of the student body watches. That'll teach them to be smart asses.

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