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Comment Re:Food and Drug (Score 1) 42

No, the inclusion of "articles intended for use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease in man or other animals" in the original act creating the FDA (the FFDCA, the C is "Cosmetics", btw) has been more or less uncontroversial for longer than you or I have likely been alive.

Moreover, I have really have no desire to return to the era of Mrs. Moffat's Shoo-Fly Powders for Drunkenness , or the bionic equivalent thereof.


Submission + - The popularity of Wikipedia articles: catalysts, trends, and applications ( 2

The ed17 writes: "A fascinating report on Wikipedia's traffic patterns highlights some of the view peaks in the encyclopedia's history. The winner? Whitney Houston's article received some 425 views per second upon news of her death, and Amy Winehouse came in second. Celebrity deaths dominate the top events, challenged only by American football's Super Bowl halftime show.

Equally as interesting are the catalysts that drive these viewers. In addition to cultural events, the Google Doodle, DDOS attacks, and even Slashdot play significant roles. With traffic following a power-law distribution, should Wikipedia editors be concentrating on these few popular topics (regardless their academic merit) in order to better shape public perception?"


Submission + - German science minister stripped of her PhD (

An anonymous reader writes: In a move likely to have major political implications, the University of Düsseldorf has revoked the doctoral degree of Germany’s science and education minister, Annette Schavan. The commitee investigating allegations of plagiarism came to the conclusion that she "systematically and deliberately claimed as her own intellectual achievements which she had in fact not produced herself". Schavan wants to appeal the decision in court and has not resigned from her post so far.

Why Microsoft Office For iOS Will Likely Never See the Light of Day 270

MojoKid writes "It has been over six years since Apple introduced the iPhone. Millions of apps have been written for the platform in that time, with collective downloads into the billions. Apple's App Store is a thriving marketplace with a huge amount of software available, except Microsoft Office. There's a version of Office for iOS supposedly in the works, but Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer threw cold water on the idea when asked about upcoming events for the Office suite after launching the new Office 2013 / Office 365 products earlier this week. Revenue sharing is reportedly a major sticking point. Microsoft is trying to push people towards yearly subscriptions with Office 2013 and Office 365, but Apple requires a 30 percent profit share on sales of any app in their store. Microsoft reportedly isn't thrilled at the idea of sharing that much revenue. It's ironic — when Bill Gates agreed to port Office to the Mac nearly 20 years ago, it was seen as a lifeline for the beleaguered manufacturer. Now, Microsoft is knocking on the door of Apple's business and Cupertino seems disinclined to answer."

Comment Re:stripping metadata? (Score 1) 129

Funny, I had just been talking about this the day before yesterday.

In any case,

(b) Removal or Alteration of Copyright Management Information.— No person shall, without the authority of the copyright owner or the law—
(1) intentionally remove or alter any copyright management information,
(2) distribute or import for distribution copyright management information knowing that the copyright management information has been removed or altered without authority of the copyright owner or the law, or
(3) distribute, import for distribution, or publicly perform works, copies of works, or phonorecords, knowing that copyright management information has been removed or altered without authority of the copyright owner or the law,

Comment Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (Score 1) 208

When I look to assess whether it's a few fringe conservative religious whackjobs running the GOP, or a large part of the base, I look to the results of individual ballot measures that touch on the questions that matter most to those folks--generally social conservative touchstones such as same-sex marriage, gay/lesbian employment discrimination measures, abortion, and so forth.

Those measures, even when they fail, pull 40%+ support.

I really see no way of explaining this as being a function of a tiny minority of the GOP.

In this election, I was able to find six high-profile races that touched on "Christian value" issues. The percentage of voters taking the "pro-theocrat" position on these individual issues is indicated below.

  • Florida abortion funds: 44.9%
  • Florida religious school funding: 44.5%
  • Maine same-sex marriage: 47.1%
  • Maryland same-sex marriage: 47.9%
  • Minnesota same-sex marriage ban: 47.6%
  • Washington same-sex marriage: 48.3%

These numbers are more or less consistent with each other and history, and in every case above, the individual voting patterns are highly party-aligned.

What they are not consistent with is the idea that the theocrats are a tiny minority of the GOP.

Comment Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (Score 4, Insightful) 208

"small fringe" is sadly not, to my mind, a plausible interpretation of the evidence

When you look at many votes on questions touched on by the theocrats, it's pretty clear that they enjoy substantial support from large segments and often majorities of the GOP electorate.

I'm very sorry that the somewhat more sensible Republican party of the past is no longer with us. But that's the case, and it's time for people who supported a more sensible GOP to either figure out a way of more effectively persuading people to your view (because the theocrats are winning that war, despite last night's results), or, alternatively, get themselves a more sensible party of their own.

Comment Re:That's the way the cookie crumbles (Score 5, Informative) 455

Thank you, that's interesting and, at least in theory potentially useful to me some day.

(Only had one real copyright claim, someone used one of my images on the cover of their death metal CD and was selling it. No returned phone calls for weeks. Good thing it was the cover, Eventually I DMCA'd the album cover from Amazon's web site, got a call back in *minutes*, whole matter was settled an hour or two later. If they'd counterclaimed, or just used m images inside the CD booklet, ... well, anyway. Weird how these things work.

Anyway, thanks again for the data.

One other thing: The copyright office has an RfC or the like on making a copyright small claims court. I think something like that might be sensible, but IANAL. Anyway, FYI,

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