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Comment Boss' perception of unproductivity or poor quality (Score 3, Insightful) 1019

The big issue here is the boss' PERCEPTION that developers are not producing at a level he expects or that the code being produced is crappy. The music edict is just a proxy for his real concern. It is critical for you to make sure the boss doesn't have this perception about YOU specifically. If so, you need to either find a way to change the boss' perception of you, or find another job. Most likely the boss' perception is general, and is not based on any real metrics of productivity or quality. What might help is suggesting to the boss how to collect such metrics, and more importantly how to present to his management that his team is very productive and has the highest quality work. It's very likely that the boss is being pressured by his management, so giving him the tools to fight back will help your teams' chance of avoiding the next round of layoffs. This is good for everyone: the boss gets credit, you are adding value, and everyone is aligned with the company's goals.

Comment Cuts both ways (Score 1) 245

I do feel sorry for the homeless man for being the target of the ruthless RIAA, and am disappointed with the judge for allowing the RIAA's behaviour.

At the same time, I hope this man will fight the RIAA and tie up their legal resources. It's not likely that the RIAA would be able to collect any judgement against a homeless man, and they might run up huge legal fees if the man fights the suit. That would be money they couldn't use to sue other innocent people.

Of course, if any legal precedents are made due to such a case, it could harm the other innocent RIAA targets. At least I can hope that the RIAA's empire collapses long before that.


Submission + - Florida election ballots to be printed on-demand

davidwr writes: The St. Petersburg, FL, Times reports that Florida is going back to paper ballots, but with a twist. They are printing the ballots on-demand, right there at the polling booth. This isn't machine-assisted voting where a touch-screen fills in your printed ballot for you. It's just a way to save printing costs and reduce paper waste.
The Media

Submission + - Jack Thompson: Games Industry Colluding With DoD (

NexFlamma writes: "In a press release sent out yesterday, controversial Miami lawyer Jack Thompson claims to have found evidence of an "unholy alliance" between the gaming industry and the United States Department of Defense. When contacted for further information on the subject, Wired's Game|Life was sent a link to the supposed "evidence." The page G|L was directed to not only doesn't serve as evidence of his claims, but after reading through the 10-page link, G|L writer Earnest Cavalli demonstrates how the information presented directly contradicts Jack's statement."

Submission + - Rare DNA mutations link unrelated families

An anonymous reader writes: Report in today's NYT: Newly available DNA tests that use microarray analysis to scan all of an individual's 46 chromosomes for tiny defects are tracing the symptoms of thousands of individuals lumped together as "autistic" or "developmentally delayed" to one of dozens of distinct deletions or duplications of DNA. The story is about the impact of the technology on the families whose kids are being given these genetic diagnoses of incredibly rare disorders. Apparently alot of them are trying to find each other, but when you're one of only six in the world, that can be tough. The story looks at three for whom "a genetic mutation has become a new form of kinship.'' Link:
The Courts

Submission + - How should I have responded to RIAA lawyer? 10

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: "The RIAA's lawyers are a bit jumpy these days since their standard "making available" boilerplate was rejected by the Court in Interscope v. Rodriguez. But I still never expected, when I initiated a dismissal motion in Elektra v. Schwartz, that they would be reaching out to me , of all people, for help. But so they did, asking me "in the interest of efficiency... what precisely Defendant contends is lacking from Plaintiffs' Complaint for Defendant to consider it sufficient. Perhaps Plaintiffs may be able to satisfy these alleged deficiencies and spare both parties additional and unnecessary motions practice." Unfortunately my response was not very helpful; I couldn't think of anything better than to say, more or less, that "Plaintiffs have no case whatsoever against Ms. Schwartz, and their case against her was frivolous in its inception. Accordingly, there are no facts they can allege that will satisfy the plausibility standard." On reflection, I'm feeling kind of guilty that I didn't give them a more creative, and helpful answer, and I thought to turn to my friends at Slashdot, who are (a) almost always helpful, and (b) always creative. What would you have said?"
United States

Submission + - Return of the Cold War?

HistoryRepeatsItself writes: Do you think US foreign policy has made the world less safe? Looks like Vladimir Putin thinks so. Some quotes: "witnessing the almost uncontained, hyper use of force in international relations." and "One state, the United States, has overstepped its national borders in every way. This is very dangerous. Nobody feels secure anymore because nobody can hide behind international law," and "It is a world of one master, one sovereign.... It has nothing to do with democracy," and "Unilateral, illegitimate actions have not solved a single problem: they have become a hotbed of further conflicts."
As if Global Warming isn't enough to worry about.

Two Ways Not To Handle Free Speech 686

Two stories in the news offer contrasting approaches by Web companies to questions of free speech. First YouTube: reader skraps notes that the Google property has recently banned the popular atheist commentator Nick Gisburne. Gisburne had been posting videos with logical arguments against Christian beliefs; but when he turned his attention to Islam (mirror of Gisburne's video by another user), YouTube pulled the plug, saying: 'After being flagged by members of the YouTube community, and reviewed by YouTube staff, the video below has been removed due to its inappropriate nature. Due to your repeated attempts to upload inappropriate videos, your account now been permanently disabled, and your videos have been taken down.' provides a second example of how to react to questions of free speech. Reader theodp sends along a story in about how Amazon hung up on customers wanting to comment on its continuing practice of selling animal-fighting magazines. The article notes that issues of free speech are rarely cut-and-dried, and that Amazon is doing itself no favors by going up against the Humane Society.
Update: 02/11 04:25 GMT by KD : updated Nick Gisburne link to new account.

Submission + - Cartoon Network "Bombs" Sell for $1000

An anonymous reader writes: Shortly after the bomb scare in Boston, the "bombs" themselves are being put up on ebay. While many were confiscated, or put in locations unreachable without a ladder, a select few got into the hands of the public. After the media frenzy over the alleged "bombs," the items began to appear on Ebay for prices upward of $1,000.
A link to the auction can be found here: re-Aqua-Teen-Hunger-Force_W0QQitemZ300079642847QQi hZ020QQcategoryZ201QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

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