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Comment Re:actually, no (Score 1) 150

The 237 supplement mandates that any software passing the usual "new" and "useful" requirements MUST be patentable.

10A Computer programs

        (1) A computer program is not an invention and not a manner of manufacture for the purposes of this Act.

        (2) Subsection (1) prevents anything from being an invention or a manner of manufacture for the purposes of this Act only to the extent that a claim in a patent or an application relates to a computer program as such.

        (3) A claim in a patent or an application relates to a computer program as such if the actual contribution made by the alleged invention lies solely in it being a computer program.

The ONLY thing excluded from patentability is something like a program to fill out your tax form, where the SOLE contribution is that it's software doing it. It rules out "X on a computer" if X is something old, and NOTHING is added to it other than "on a computer".

All the standard software patents, the GIF patent, the RSA encryption, patent, the MP3 and other audio/video codec patents, all contain novel mathematical contributions. The GIF patent contribution is that compresses image data. The RSA patent contribution is a new public-key encryption.

This is a complete and utter loss for programmers. They ruled out a laughable narrow category of blatantly bogus patent claims, and otherwise mandated any software that does anything "novel" and "useful" must be patentable.

It's appalling that such a large segment of the geek community have been completely swindled by it.


Comment Re:Just goes to show... (Score 1) 622

The closest you came to mentioning any specific codes of behavior should not be lightly discarded was your mention of the Bible. I did the best I could attempting to address your completely non-specific assertion that there was something valuable in archaic religious codes of behavior that was being (improperly) discarded lightly by modern society. I tried to imagine what you had in mind, and I'll admit some of the possibilities I considered led me to a negative expectation. However I was also firmly conscious that it would be invalid to draw any conclusions based on my imagination of what you might mean. So I specifically asked you to identify one or more examples. Like I said I suspect they won't be very good, but I'm listening and I want to fairly consider what you were trying to say.

What did you have in mind?


Comment Re:An outlet (Score 1) 120

Or they take away motivation.
So Are teens who play video games more likely to get a job, more likely to not get a job even when its a detriment, no change.v

Perhaps leave teens mentally exhausted unable to dream up ways of getting in trouble. Won't last - the amoral behaviour so necessary in playing many violent video games is training these people, establishing thought patterns. Curious how they will rationalize things when they get into their 30's and 40's.

i need a red sports car for my mid-life crisis -- so I can run people over with it

Comment Re:Its called blowing off steam (Score 1) 120

Its called blowing off steam and it can be accomplished mush better by going outside and playing with other kids. Thats how i did it all i see are kids playing video games or watch cartoons which in my day was saturday mornings. But blowing off mental stress killing zombies is fun its just not enough in my book.

You, sir, are a veritable fossil, much as myself - get out on that bike, ski, run around in the woods, get into a boat and paddle like mad, swat at 12,507 mosquitoes at summer camp, catch a few 15 lb carp, go sledding, swipe pumpkins, chase girls, etc. Don't wake up at 40 to find half your hair gone along with most of your life in empty pursuit of points and levels.

Comment Re:An outlet (Score 5, Funny) 120

Games are a good outlet for stress and frustration. I'd argue a game is a constructive activity as there are things you can learn from video games.
Of course they make people less violent.


I found many games to increase my stress level to the point I can actually hear red corpuscles whistling through the capillaries in my cranium.

and once I finished getting them unpackaged, installed and running my stress level went even higher

Comment Re: What's next Cass? (Score 1) 530

So that $20 note that I am holding is just a figment of my imagination?

The value of that note is a figment of the collective imaginations of a group of people. If most of that group changes their mind about its value, it can easily become worth no more than the nice paper stock it's printed on. This has happened to currencies at many times throughout history.

Even gold has value only because of social convention. That material actually has few practical uses of significant value.

Comment Re: What's next Cass? (Score 5, Insightful) 530

Maybe Cass can use the same explanation to explain our $16 Trillion debt.

The same explanation does hold in both cases. The main difference is that climate is a real physical phenomenon, whereas money is purely psychological. It's a measure of intention that people try to keep track of using rewriteable magnetic patterns on spinning disks.

I concluded long ago that due to human nature, nothing will be done about climate change until the resulting unfolding disasters force people to make desperate feats of geoengineering to attempt to reverse the damage. The cost of those efforts is probably going to make $16T look like a drop in the bucket.

Comment Re:Idiocracy (Score 2) 628

So, at what point does responsibility for distraction take hold?

Obviously if I do something distracting, like make a loud noise that takes a security guard away from their post, and shit goes down I have responsibility.

I tend to agree that we should be allowed to text people driving or not, and put the responsibility on the drivers, but if someone texted me back and was like, keep it to a minimum, I'm driving in a shaky situation, and I kept a conversation going, clearly I am doing is wrong on some level.

If someone does something stupid, like jumps out into traffic, I should try to avoid them too, even if they are being idiotic.

Comment Re:The article you linked quotes exactly what I sa (Score 1) 150

The Techdirt article you've cited to try to "prove me wrong" quotes the bill as follows:

"where the actual contribution of an invention lies solely in it being a computer program, it is ineligible for patent protection... it will not be possible to obtain a patent for an invention that involves or makes use of the computer program if the sole inventive feature is that it is a computer program".

In other words, exactly what I said.

Where this gets really fun is when the argument is presented that "the program" and "the computer" are analog, rather than digital. A hole you could pilot an aircraft carrier through.

Comment Re:actually, no (Score 2) 150

Known shill = untrustworthy source of information. Even a broken clock is right twice a day - that doesn't mean it's ok to start believing it when you want to know what time it is. You ignore it and seek out an unbroken clock.

Unless it perpetually indicates 5:00 PM - time to check in at the Tiki Bar.

Some of the biggest liars I've ever known occasionally tell the truth, otherwise they'd function like some Bizarro World inhabitant.

Comment Re:Just goes to show... (Score 1) 622

These were not arbitrary codes of behavior, these were proven ways of keeping society working over time. That doesn't mean everything is right or that one could improve upon most of it, but there's good solid advice there that should not be lightly discarded.

There is ZERO problem with anything being "lightly discarded". We're talking about crap that is literally taken as "word of god" by a majority of the population. It took fucking SIX HUNDRED THOUSAND dead Americans to get rid of slavery. It countless court battles every year, and countless criminal arrests every year, eternally fighting back Biblical versions of Sharia law. We have a large minority of the population who vote for whatever politician proclaims their adherence to the Bible the loudest, and an overwhelming majority of the population who refuse to vote for any politician who doesn't make at least some statement proclaiming the Bible is the Word Of God. We have people being murdered in Exorcisms.... and before you dismiss that as merely a few rouge extremists let me point out that one of the leading contenders for the next presidential race published a description of his own participation in a partcularly abhorrent violent crime, one which not-uncommonly ends up in a murder. And think deeply on the fact that many voters take that as reason FOR electing him to the presidency, and many are be accepting/neutral about it. If you strip the Biblical/religious angle out of that story, everyone involved should obviously be in fucking PRISON for what was done to that poor woman.

Most people aren't religious fanatics, but for a large majority of the population anything related to the Bible is given at least a passive level of default acceptance... even when it's a State Governor and possible presidential candidate recounting their participation in an abhorrent violent crime, it is passively accepted as a non-story. Even when it's someone actually campaigning for presidential candidate nomination on video participating in a ritual for protection against witchcraft in the name of Jesus, it's a non-story. No reporter cites Exodus 22:18 Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live and asks whether there should be capitol punishment if a witch is caught.

No, there's NOT ONE case of "good solid advice" from the Bible being "lightly discarded". What we have in anything Biblical being deeply entrenched, with literally violent force from fanatics and passive acceptance by "moderates". What we have is an almost impossible series of struggles over endless centuries trying to dislodge the most toxic bits one-by-one.

If you want to argue your case you're going to have to do better than some empty handwave that there exists some sort of "good advice" being "lightly discarded". You're going to have to have to identify one or more examples of supposed "good advice". I rather suspect that any example you try to give will fall into at least one of three categories. Either (1) it was never particularly good advice (2) maybe it was "good advice" for a primitive barbaric society but it's not very good advice today, and/or (3) maybe it is "good advice" but it's a Golden-History fantasy to believe the advice was actually applied more in the past than it is today.


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