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Comment Re:We've been laughing at you for years... (Score 1, Funny) 510

Yeah, we should be more like the British! They don't ever come up with any silly legal ideas like us Yanks do! Oh, except the following:
  • Under the reign of Elizabeth I, any person found guilty of "harboring a Catholic priest" would be tortured or even hanged. Any priest of the Catholic faith that was caught would be hanged, drawn, and quartered.
  • With the exception of carrots, most goods may not be sold on Sunday.
  • All English males over the age 14 are to carry out 2 or so hours of longbow practice a week supervised by the local clergy. Explanation: This law dates from the middle ages when there was no standing army, so in times of war each gentry was required to produce a quota (depending on its size) of knights, archers, infantry, etc. As the church was the only centralized instrument of bureauacracy (the lords were independent for the most part), they were used for such tasks.
  • London Hackney Carriages (taxis/cabs) must carry a bale of hay and a sack of oats. Explanation: The London Hackney Carriage Laws covers hackneys in other towns too and have remained unaltered for over 100 years. Firms have been known to manufacture very small bales of hay to carry in a taxi during disputes during local councils (who license the hackneys everywhere except London). Also the vehicle has to be tethered at a taxi rank, and the council have to supply a water trough at said ranks (that could be fun on a Saturday night!). The one about urinating against the back wheel is a Hackney Carriage Law too, and has also been done, on mass, during taxi/council disputes (allegedly).
  • The severest Penaltys will be suffered by any commoner who doth permit his animal to have carnal knowledge of a pet of the Royal House (enacted by George I).
  • It is illegal to be drunk on Licensed Premises (in a pub or bar).
  • It is illegal for two adult men to have sex in the same house as a third person. Explanation: Introduced to outlaw "molly houses" which began to appear in the big cities of England in the late 16th Century. In these bordellos, homosexuals engaged in sex, sado
  • masochism, transvestitism etc., and they were perceived as a threat to public morality, and so outlawed.
  • Any person found breaking a boiled egg at the sharp end will be sentenced to 24 hours in the village stocks (enacted by Edward VI).
  • It is illegal to stand within one hundred yards of the reigning monarch when not wearing socks (enacted by Edward VI).
  • Chelsea Pensioners may not be impersonated. Explanation: Chelsea Pensioners are entitled to enhanced state benefits and subsidized accommodation, so pretending to be one is simply fraud!
  • A bed may not be hung out of a window.
  • It is illegal for a lady to eat chocolates on a public conveyance.
  • Mince pies can not be eaten on Christmas day. Explanation: Ingredients of mince pies and plum puddings were pagan in origin, and their consumption part of ancient fertility rituals. The law dates from the Puritan era, the same time that dancing in church, maypoles, and holly and ivy decorations were outlawed. The laws were never officially repealed because upon the restoration of the monarchy, (in the form of Charles II) all laws formed under the protectorate were ignored as invalid.
  • Any boy under the age of 10 may not see a naked mannequin.
  • It is illegal to leave baggage unattended. Explanation: Many terrorists in the UK favor the practice of placing a bomb in a bag, then leaving the bag to explode later. Since this became a real threat, this law was passed to deter the crime and prosecute those who commit it.
  • Picking up abandoned baggage is an act of terrorism. See above.
  • It is illegal for a Member of Parliament to enter the House of Commons wearing a full suit of armour. Explanation: The law dates from the renegotiation of royal/political power on the accession of Charles II, designed to stop the MPs storming the house if it makes a decision they disapprove of. The Monarch is not allowed to enter the House of Commons (the legislative house) for similar reasons
  • Destroying or defacing money is illegal.
  • If a steam locomotive is driven on roads, a man must walk in front of the vehicle with a red flag during the day and a red lantern at night to warn passersby.
  • All steam locomotives are limited to 4mph on roads.
  • Anal sex is prohibited.
  • You may not make out in public.
  • It is legal for a male to urinate in public, as long it is on the rear wheel of his motor vehicle and his right hand is on the vehicle. Explanation: One of many Hackney Carriage Laws that have been unaltered for over 100 years, and it has alledgedly been done on mass during taxi/council disputes.
  • Committing suicide is classified as a capital crime.
  • Interfering with the mail or sleeping with the consort of the Queen is classed as treason, and as such, carries a maximum penalty of death.
  • Placing a postage stamp that bears the Queen (or King) upside down is considered treason.
  • One may not "blemish the peace".
  • A license is required to keep a lunatic.
  • Damaging the grass is illegal.
  • In Chester, you can only shoot a Welsh person with a bow and arrow inside the city walls and after midnight.
  • You may not shoot a Welsh person on Sunday with a longbow in the Cathedral Close in Hereford.
  • In Liverpool, it is illegal for a woman to be topless in public except as a clerk in a tropical fish store.
  • In London, companies may vote in local elections.
  • In York, excluding Sundays, it is perfectly legal to shoot a Scotsman with a bow and arrow.

Comment Re:Forget MySQL, What about GlassFish and NetBeans (Score 1) 144

GlassFish competes directly with Oracle AS, and Weblogic (which Oracle acquired through BEA's acquisition a while back).

NetBeans competes directly with Oracle's JDeveloper.

I wonder if Oracle will keep these tools around. Personally, I think Oracle would be a fool not to. The NetBeans/GlassFish combo is by far the most productive way to develop server side Java Applications.

I agree, and I don't think Oracle will be pulling the plug on these. Some of these technologies might get integrated, and some will probably just continue on.

Look at how they've handled BEA. They have silently admitted that WebLogic is superior, but are still integrating it with some components of OAS to make an even better product. I think we can probably expect something similar with their IDEs.

As far as Glassfish/MySQL... I really don't think they will get rid of these either. WebLogic/OracleDB are powerful (and expensive) enterprise class closed-source products. However, there will still be a large community of open-source developers that Oracle will probably want to hang on to. This should allow Glassfish/MySQL to live on.

I think if they do for whatever reason try to get rid of these, there will be a huge migration of developers to other FOSS products, ultimately leading to more competition for Oracle.

What I'm really curious about is the O/S and server fronts. "Oracle Solaris" and "Oracle Fire" just don't sound right.

Comment Re:Whatever happened to (Score 1) 397

I saw MYST available as an iPod app. I didn't feel like dishing out $5.99 for it so I can't tell you if it's any good. However it's a sign that somebody somewhere is still getting picking up some loose change from it.

The "remastered" original Monkey Island game is also available on Steam and iPod. It has received high marks on both.

Comment Go Postal (Score 1) 297

From reading these comments, it's quite clear that stamped mail is still preferred for financial transactions. Quite interesting to see. I guess the fact that an average slashdot user spends the day reading articles about hacked systems and identity theft might have something to do with it.

My guess is that almost nobody still uses stamped mail for personal letters other than wedding invitations and Hallmark sentiments.

Comment Large Hardon Collider *ouch* (Score 4, Funny) 338

From the article:

We ourselves find it hard not to suspect the involvement of some pan-dimensional police force, seeking to prevent humanity acquiring parallel-universe portal capability before we're ready to use it responsibly.

I have devoted a large portion of my life to playing countless hours of Doom and Halflife, reading Kurt Vonnegut novels, and watching numerous reruns of Quantum Leap and Sliders... I think I'm "ready to use it"!

Oh, wait... "responsibly"... hmm...

Submission + - Britain's Apology to Alan Turing

ExE122 writes: "British PM Gordon Brown gives a posthumous apology to mathematician, chemist, logician, cryptanalyst and the father of computer science, Alan Turing. For slashdotters, Turing is probably best known for the Turing Machine, a device which has laid the groundwork for modern computer algorithms. To the rest of the world, he is commonly known as a World War II hero, deciphering several German crypts including that used by the Enigma machine. Though his contributions to science and the war efforts put him among the most influential men of the 20th century, Turing was criminally prosecuted in Britain in 1952 because of his lifestyle. Alan Turing was a homosexual, which at that time was a criminal illness and was punished by chemical castration. He committed suicide in 1954 at the age of 41. On Sept 10, 2009, Britain's Prime Minister gave a public apology for the "appalling" post-war treatment of Alan Turing, and acknowledged his contributions to the war effort."

Comment Re:The Myth of the Isolated Colenel Hacker (Score -1, Offtopic) 282

Linux just isn't ready for the desktop yet.

Translation: I haven't tried it.

the average computer user isn't going to spend months learning how to use a CLI and then hours compiling packages so that they can get a workable graphic interface to check their mail with

I've always thought Ubuntu has very extensive driver support, as do many other distros. Who needs the CLI when there are multiple desktop environments to choose from? How many does Windows have? Oh, right, one...

I'm not the only one who thinks they are user-friendly... Already many big-name vendor laptops are coming out with some form of Linux pre-loaded. Take a look at the HP laptops that are now being offered with Mobile Internet O/S... from the page: " Mobile Internet is a user-friendly, all-inclusive interface built on Linux."

especially not when they already have a Windows machine that does its job perfectly well

haha, good one!

and is backed by a major corporation as opposed to Linux which is only supported by a few unemployed nerds living in their mother's basement somewhere.

Red Hat is a major corporation. It's publicly traded on the NYSE (ticker: RHAT) and doing rather well. You should consider investing. You should also know that Red Hat Enterprise Linux is a fully supported release which offers several high availability service contracts... which is why a lot of US Government systems are now running RHEL. Not to mention it's faster, less expensive, and more secure.

The last thing I want is a level 5 dwarf (haha) providing me my OS.

I don't blame you, I'd want at least a level 12 mage!

Comment you young whippersnappers... (Score 2, Insightful) 106

Perhaps the real problem is a lack of understanding. It seems that many lawmakers who try to deal with internet law have next to no technological knowledge about how the internet works, especially when it comes to e-commerce. (this looks like a good place for the obligatory 'tubes' link).

It seems like a lot of these laws are made with "good intentions" in that they are trying to prevent something they see as wrong: It sounds like the Maine law was trying to control the personal information dispersal of minors, and the law in New York was trying to keep it's residents from evading state taxes. They don't realize that the Maine law destroys a huge teenage market base in an already struggling economy, and that the New York law stifles e-commerce and causes a hastle for everyone outside of the state.

Unfortunately it looks like a lot of these laws are being proposed by individuals (I had originally written 'old farts' here but deleted it because it's unfair to old people... and to farts) have too narrow of a view to fully grasp the repercussions.

It's the same old complaint, I know (-1 Redundant) but I guess as long as there's slashdot, there will always be a place to bitch about it.

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