Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Comment Re:Hmfff ... (Score 2, Insightful) 76

Yes, it's technically possible to overturn a patent, but an altruist would have to go through a lot of effort and a massive amount of money to gain access to their own invention only to give it away.

If you invent something, patent it immediately, whether you intend to profit from it or not. If you choose to freely share the invention, fine, at least with a patent on file you won't get some troll who jumps claim on you and starts barring you from using your own invention.

Comment Re:*sigh* (Score 1) 144

I think the notion of "discovery" is pretty fuzzy in a lot of cases, but you're crazy if you think the player deserves MORE credit than the software authors here.

Why? The creators of the software developed a tool, and the player used that tool to discover something. We don't give the inventor of the computer credit for discovering fractals, or the inventor of the microscope credit for discovering bacteria, do we?

Granted, the creators of the software deserve great credit for creating a useful tool, just like we separately recognize Galileo for developing the telescope and Herschel for using it to discover Uranus.

Comment Re:Both, of course (Score 1) 468

Anonymous Coward wrote:
That's because there's no actual *news* on fox, fuckface. It's all fear mongering and talking points.

Anonymous Coward wrote:
Well, you're a fucking moron, and generally deserve any downmodding you get, jackass.

I challenge you to repost these comments while logged-in, so people can Mod you -1 Flamebait as you deserve.

Comment Re: These Neo Cons Are Turds in the Punch Bowl (Score 1) 1238

OK. I'll concede the point with regards to China but the eventual dissolution of the USSR provides me with backup.

Except that that occurred after decades of de-Stalinization, and was far more connected to the Soviets' nonsensical economic policies than to suppressing dissenters. But I still agree that suppressing ideological opponents is a stupid idea. If nothing else, it will cause OP to go down in history as a cruel inhuman tyrant.

Comment Re:Both, of course (Score 1) 468

Indeed. So long, that is, as we understand that all forms of concentrated wealth arise from government interference -- landlordism, corporate ownership, inheritance, et cetera -- and eliminate them.

So government pre-dates concentrated wealth in the history of mankind? I find that claim difficult to accept. I believe that with no government interference, wealth will concentrate in the hands of those with the greatest willingness and ability to use force. The fact that this is currently the government does not escape me.

Comment Re:judgment (Score 1) 170

FireFox can filter a file name, but LimeWire actually could identify much, much more, and it still was not used. Also, LimeWire has no control over what browser you do/don't use, nor can anyone distributing content know on the open Internet if it is filtered or not, a legal bye, but limeWire was an aggregator and search system and could ENFOREC the filtering, and bothered to write it but only make it "optional" while concurently advertizing in various circles you could get copywritten works on their service.

For or against file sharing, they were stupid, and got burned for it. All they had to do was enable the filtering by default, and let it be easy to "bypass" without making it obvious that was the case... Well, that and not advertize on college campuses the way they did, and have more general content filters like "rock" instead of "top 40 rock" and they would likely have been absolved...

Comment Re:Welcome, our new open codec overlords! (Score 2, Interesting) 312

You can never know for sure, unless you've went through all the patents. However I'm sure since it's On2 their lawyers have looked at it.

However, it doesn't mean it's completely patent free. Google still owns all the patents and gives a patent license to use it. They're promising it's royalty-free.

Comment Re:Cute application, but why? (Score 1) 131

Some are oppression fighters (fighting for oppression), the rest see the US as occupying their home and strike at US anywhere. Bin Laden is a little bit of both, he became offended when the Saudi leadership invited the US in during the first gulf war and he also wishes to impose a global Caliphate where a select group of islamic clerics impose anything they say as absolute law and all non-muslims are exterminated.

Comment Re:Someone who's not lazy... (Score 1) 319

Yes cougar certainly is a filthy adult term...

I suppose that is why there is a mainstream TV show called "Cougar Town": "The series focuses on a recently divorced woman who reenters a dating scene filled with younger men (making her a "cougar", hence the series title)..."

For the sake of the children!

Of course it stars Courteney Cox, so perhaps it is for the sake of everyone...

Comment Re:OMG! MIT just invented the Hybrid Wing Body! (Score 1) 459

I don't recall the article ever saying they invented anything new, they just put all the pieces together (i.e. designed it) such that they expect a 50-70% drop in fuel consumption.

Since the designs and their problems are well known, they have quite a lot to work with to figure out how to make it all work.

It's like the B-1 Bomber - such wing designs had been around for years, and the potential gains were well known. The trouble was, until the B-1 was developed some people thought the inherent instability in such a design was insurmountable, and such a plane would never fly (because all other attempts always crashed).

But then, someone figured out how to compensate, and now it works great.

MIT is well known for their engineering and technology programs, they are about as prestigious as a tech school gets. Given the number of technological innovations that come out of MIT, it's quite likely this is yet another MIT breakthrough. They can be pretty sure by running it through their simulations, but won't know for certain until a prototype is actually built some years down the road.

Comment Re:Patent titles in the summary are meaningless (Score 2, Insightful) 243

The problem with ideas is that they seem obvious in hindsight. Prior to that, clearly nobody had implemented it.. so the idea couldn't have been that obvious

You're saying: because something hasn't been implemented yet means it must not be obvious?

I'm saying: Perhaps M$ just got to the patent office first with an obvious idea... (much like the Bell's Telephone)

Since the patent examiners are not professionals skilled in the art It's obvious that they aren't qualified to make the non-obvious distinction, or else we wouldn't have so many of these obvious patents.


FYI Menus existed in 1995. Menus on a webpage == fnck!ng obvious esp. to any professional skilled in the art of making menus and web pages.

Comment Late to the game here (Score 1) 857

History is by it's nature political and is always taught with bias. That is the truth about history. Sure you can memorize facts, learn about why things are the way they are, but you can never have it taught to you without having something either intentionally left out or by having the "facts" changed by the person doing the teaching. Even if you are reviewing first person accounts of historical events, you are still learning from a biased perspective. This is the first thing that should be taught to every student who has to study history (which should be a requirement for every high school and college graduate).

Slashdot Top Deals

Refreshed by a brief blackout, I got to my feet and went next door. -- Martin Amis, _Money_