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Comment For several reasons no (Score 3, Interesting) 664

1) The iPhone is the biggest selling single phone on the market, hell they've a 1/3 of the whole market with one device
2) The iPod is the biggest selling digital music player by a mile
3) iTunes is one of the easiest to use ways of managing your digital music collection

So will the vast majority of people give any sort of hoot about DRM when all they can see is their ability to share the music between their PCs and their digital music player? No they will not.

All this will do is demonstrate how pointless the actual demonstration is, thus meaning that Apple will be less likely to be concerned.

For most people the question isn't DRM-free its "playable on my iPod".

Comment Cannot explode but can be used in cars? (Score 1) 603

Since when couldn't Gasoline be used in Cars? Isn't the whole principle of it to make it explode to drive the pistons? Now its good that this thing allegedly won't explode while being charged but with all technologies its about minimising risks through sensible practice rather than their complete elimination.

For instance I'd be willing to bet that applying 10MV at 10MA across this thing would cause some pretty funky changes that would look like an explosion.

Personally I'd like to see some sort of Darwin device in the next generation of cars, "cannot explode unless user should be removed from the human race".

Comment Security through obscurity (Score 4, Insightful) 145

This isn't about transparent government v security. Security through Obscurity is the well known worst approach to security that you can have, because if anyone ever does get that information (hell bribing a sys admin can't be that hard if you really want the info) then your have no security.

Its a bogus claim and a bogus judgement. If they were claiming that it shouldn't be released because editing Wikipedia isn't actually a political thing anyway then I could see a reason to toss it out. But the risk of hackers "targetting" bits of the network is just plain bogus, the implication is that these IP addresses are therefore in some secure part of the (ARKANSAS!) government and those IP addresses have already been released. What is being asked is a map back from a known IP address to its source. Claiming that knowing the physical source would some how make security worse is like saying that "Sure you have the keys, you know where the front door is and you can get in.... but I'm not telling you the NAME of the house".

Having the IP address is like having 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and the keys to the door but the government not telling you that it is called the "Whitehouse" for security reasons.

Comment Re:I'm no fan of MS... (Score 0) 455

Who hear who codes in C or C++ hasn't had a similar bug in their own code from time to time

What are these bugs of which you speak? Sometimes I add problems for the testers to find, but that is done on purpose, its not my fault if they aren't smart enough.

Oh and I've debugged your english for you

Who here

Unless that was irony.

Now the serious bit. I used to work in safety critical software, we designed, tested added redundancy and used languages (e.g. Ada) which don't have overflow problems. This isn't a performance thing (we had to be high performance as well) its about choosing quality and security from the first day.

Comment The reasons why ints are 32 bits (Score 2, Informative) 387

The biggest reason of all is interop. A piece of Java code that runs in 32 bit mode successfully will wrap around and work exactly the same on the 64 bit platform. Perl will work differently. if a piece of Java calls a piece of identical Java and one is on 32 bit and the other 64 bit then they will work properly, Perl will behave erratically.

Basically its the difference between a language that has been designed for longevity (Java) and one that just defaults to what ever is around (Perl).

Defaulting to what the processor has is the opposite of future proofing as it ensures that your current code WON'T WORK PROPERLY IN THE FUTURE. Sorry to shout but it really is quite important. The Java code will work the same on 32 bit and 64 bit versions while the Perl will work differently, thus it will not be future proof.

To really future proof your code what you need to do is plan for those things and assign your file size to be a long and guess what Java returns a long.

Perl and Design go together in the same way as Illinois and Probity.
 

The Almighty Buck

How To Make Money With Free Software 81

bmsleight writes "The Dutch Ministry of Finance organized an architecture competition to design not a building, but rather the new 5-Euro commemorative coin. The theme was 'Netherlands and Architecture'. The winning design was made 100% with free software, mainly Python, but also including The Gimp, Inkscape, Phatch, and Ubuntu. The design is amazing — the head of Queen Beatrix is made up of the names of architects based on their popularity in Yahoo searches (rendered in a font of the artist's own devising). In the end the artist, Stani Michiels, had to collaborate closely on location with technicians of the Royal Dutch Mint, so all the last bits were done on his Asus Eee PC. Soon, 350,000 Dutch people will use and enjoy the fruits of free software."
PC Games (Games)

Submission + - Auto Assault Runs out of Gas (gamasutra.com)

Brian Damage writes: "After barely a year of operation the scantly populated post-apocalyptic MMORPG Auto Assault is slated for termination this coming August 31. Despite NCsoft's failure to make back the game's initial development investment this news comes as a surprise as it is contrary to developer Net Devil's recent announcement declaring a new retooled version to be in the works. Auto Assault's monthly subscribers will not be billed beyond the cutoff date, and for those who have purchased time cards "NCsoft will reconcile these accounts appropriately."

From the article:

"In August of last year, NCsoft said it saw quarterly losses of 200 million won ($207,000), which it explained was due to a write-off of some 12.6 billion won ($13.1m) in costs related to the flagging title.""

Music

Submission + - Steve Wozniak: Open Source good, DRM dying (10zenmonkeys.com)

destinyland writes: "Steve Wozniak just weighed in on DRM, saying "it doesn't make much sense if these things are going to have DRM forever." In this great new interview, he complains that even now, only six songs on his iTunes playlist are DRM-free. He applauds the Open Source Movement, saying "it's very honorable and it's very good for the customers." He's even considering publishing the hand-written code for the Apple II as a manuscript. He's also surprisingly non-commital about the iPhone. ("Will word of mouth kill it or make it a hit? Who knows?") He also talks about his favorite pranks, and reveals that "he Secret Service read me my Miranda rights once."
Power

Submission + - Steorn to end world power problems? (steorn.com)

David Gillen writes: "Steorn, the Irish company who claim to have found a solution to the worlds energy problems with their orbo technology will later today (6pm GMT) unveil a demo their technology (link won't work till then.) running at the Kinetica Museum in London. There will apparently be 4 web-cams show the technology for a period of a few days. RTÉ are also covering the story."
Patents

Submission + - A simple plan to defeat dumb patents (blogspot.com)

Steve Jones writes: "With the EU being rumoured to look at software patents again I thought I'd have a look at the root of the problem — the US Patent Office — and work out if there is a simple way to defeat dumb patents, and I think there is... The big thing, as everyone knows, that defeats a patent is prior art, at the Patent Office they have the definition of Prior Art which includes the phrase

"known or used by others in this country, or was patented or described in a printed publication in this or a foreign country"


Which made me think. If every time we have an idea that we think is "obvious" but not done before, or something we think would be interesting (e.g. Using a PVR for targeted ads) but don't have the money to create, then we should always blog about that idea, tag it as "prior art" via Technorati thus giving people an RSS feed.

My argument is that by doing this we can, rightly claim, that the ideas have been described in the 21st Century version of a printed publication, and even if that is challenged, it is undeniable that by using the RSS feed it can be proven that people in a given country could have "known" about it.

I'm fed up thinking "bloody hell I did that ten years ago" or "I thought about doing that, its a bit obvious" when companies with as little intention as I had in developing the idea up start putting the squeeze on businesses and developers. What I've always lacked is the visible proof to submit against a claim. This is a simple suggestion about using the power of the web to create a massive prior art database. IANAL, but surely it can't be this simple?"

The Almighty Buck

Submission + - Soaring Wages in India Stem Offshore Outsorcing

An anonymous reader writes: The Wall Street Journal front page ($$$) reports that soaring wages for Indian software developers are changing the flow of jobs: In a "new twist on the outsourcing debate", American businesses have "soaked up the pool of high-end engineers ... belying the notion of an unlimited supply of top Indian engineering talent."
The Media

Submission + - "almost unbelievable incompetence" (theregister.co.uk)

An anonymous reader writes: The Register published an article by a former bomb squad man, who offers some harsh words for the perpetrators of the recent UK "car bomb" attacks:

The mindset of a man who's willing to set himself on fire to make a point — as one of the Glasgow terror-clowns seems to have done — but not to spend any effort at all on researching methods is a difficult one to understand. Even if these jokers were illiterate or had no internet access (seems unlikely, one of the suspects is apparently a doctor) they could have at least done a test. In my part of town, fun-loving teenagers burn out a car or two down by the canal every week or so: nobody would notice another one with some nails in it. Such a test would have told these idiots what every bomb-disposal operator and Hollywood effects guy already knows: that petrol, gas etc make for an excellent, photogenic fireball which you can normally be quite close to without ill effects.

Portables (Apple)

Submission + - DVD Jon Unlocks the iPhone

i_like_spam writes: Jon Lech Johansen, aka DVD Jon, has struck again. On his blog, he claims to have activated an iPhone without intiating a contract with AT&T. The activated phone cannot be used for calls through AT&T's network, but all other functionalities are open (iPod, WiFi, etc). He's even created a package to activate your iPhone too!

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