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Comment Re:1/50000th of a hair (Score 1) 38

You want to measure the width of a carbon nanotube in *meters*? How is that easier?

Even if you meant to say nanometers, I disagree with your argument. A human hair is a measure of a daily object that people can intuitively grasp. The measurement, "one meter", however, is not an intuitive concept. You still need to relate it to something in order to grasp it, even if it's just holding out your hands to show how far it is.

Comment Re:the usual stalking horse (Score 1) 419

Why do you equivocate "pedophile" with "peaceful"? I think what you meant to say is "people who keep a low profile so as to stay off of the authorities' radar". Just because someone has a specific fetish doesn't mean that they're excluded from having other fetishes, i.e. sadomasochism or rape fantasies. Pedophilia is never justifiable, no matter how peaceful they might be. You should consider just what it is that makes people so angry at pedophiles.

That being said, this is indeed and example of government overreaching its bounds using the excuse of "think of the children". We already have laws to punish offenders; crime prevention of this magnitude with no legal oversight is a terrible mistake and punishes good people along with bad by abridging basic freedoms of choice and speech.

Comment Re:Sounds just like Microsoft (Score 1) 245

This is good news for web developers and content creators - it means that Microsoft is even more serious than expected about embracing HTML 5 and standardizing media formats. It might seem like a shame to use a patented codec, but on the bright side, we're getting something that will continue to be developed and refined, and doesn't require a cumbersome, buggy abstraction layer AKA Flash.

Comment Re:Bad Summary (Score 1) 775

This decision basically affects gray-market products, i.e. those made for retail in other countries. This is actually good for the consumer insofar that it protects them from buying merchandise that can't be serviced under a warranty. A good example would be electronics goods bought abroad: attempting to get them serviced in your home country may be impossible, as the manufacturer may not even have the replacement parts on hand, assuming they even have a presence in said country. This decision is actually *good* for consumers, because it means that retailers can't get away with unloading illegitimate goods with voided warranties onto unsuspecting customers.

Comment Re:The fairest penalty is no penalty (Score 1) 728

Legalizing non-commercial downloads is just as bad as making piracy illegal, since the tools necessary to determine whether someone was legitimately non-commercial or not would be just as onerous as the 1984/Great Firewall of China scenario you painted.

The legitimate problem the creators face is that "non-commercial users" are also known by the more colloquial term, "customers". If you make it legal for people to not pay you at all, you go out of business. Customers, for their part, need to acknowledge that they have no right to download for free something that they didn't work to create and don't actually need to possess in the first place. Nobody *needs* to download music. There's no legitimate argument for making it free; it's up to the artist to decide that.

In the end, the market has to change to meet the new reality of the digital download. On the upside, this makes distribution to a wider audience at a much lower cost a real benefit. On the downside, the old guard of distributors and retailers have to either retool their business to accommodate this new business model, or go out of business. If you make the digital downloads reasonably priced and widely accessible, the majority of people will lose the incentive to pirate in the first place. The rest who continue to pirate will hopefully become a small minority, and infringers can be punished with a more reasonable fine that fits the crime.

Comment Re:First post! (Score 1) 520

If they tried to go that route with Adobe, they'd get sued for antitrust on the spot. Their second option, of course, is what they do with Office: continue offer the product, but let it lag behind, and make several features (such as collaboration) available as Windows-only options. Basically, a lobotomy.

Apple may have made people unhappy with what they did with Logic Pro and Shake (which got cannibalized for Final Cut Studio and then discontinued), but they weren't buying the only game in town; Windows is, after all, famous for software choice, right? Adobe, on the other hand, is a monopoly in the creative market, and its discontinuation on the Mac platform would be an unparalleled disaster. The legacy of Photoshop overshadows even that of Office; there simply is no realistic competition at this point, more's the pity, and even if Apple stepped in and tried to fill the gap, it'd take several years for a realistic replacement to emerge - that's simply not possible. We'd be back in 1996 again, slowly bleeding users over to the Windows platform.

Having said all this, it's important to note that the current competition from Apple and Microsoft's point of view is the mobile space. Adobe would be insane to let Microsoft buy them out, as Flash still comes in second to the importance of Creative Suite to their bottom line. Microsoft is not even a player in the mobile space at this point; they're going on name recognition alone. As good as their new platform appears to be, they also run the risk of the same kind of market fragmentation that Android now faces. Adobe can hitch their wagon to the software platform, but unless Microsoft takes a more draconian approach to hardware control with the vendors (which would make them serious contenders against both Apple and Android, and they of all companies should have the clout to do it), they're not going to any more benefit from the partnership than allying themselves with Google.

Comment Make it stop! (Score 1) 409

How many more times do we have to endure the same movie being released over and over again? Let it go already and make something new, George.

Wait - he does realize that 3D actually refers to a change in technology, not in showing the exact same movie three times, right?

Comment Re:woowoo (Score 1) 328

So Apple is guilty of taking a cut to maintain the servers, fund their R&D, provide advertising and the platform the developers are using? Shame on them indeed for tempting those developers to take home 70% of the profits without having to deal with the headaches of creating a method of distribution!

By the way, you're missing a few decimal points. 30% of a billion dollars isn't $300,000, it's $300,000,000.

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