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Comment What gives him or the video legal standing? (Score 2) 339

None of the articles list him as a police officer. Was there a crime committed? Perhaps, but that doesn't necessarily give him or his videos legal standing. Here are a few of the many ethical, reasonable, or otherwise questions to be asked:
  1. What is the expected privacy of the people in the vehicle?
  2. Was the privacy of the people in the vehicle breached? But what if this was on private land instead of public?
  3. Was this evidence lawfully obtained? The court put her in jail, so under the current laws, apparently so.
  4. How long until laws banning this type of "citizen surveillance" are enacted?
  5. How were the police notified? Did he call in the illicit activity, then handed over the video?
  6. Could I use this same technology to record speeding vehicles on the highway, texting and drive, failing to stop, or tailgating, then call the cops and use my video as evidence? Knowing full well that my "evidence" cannot be checked for accuracy (MPG, location, time, etc.). "But darn it! They're committing a crime!!"

Comment Poor Dataset of Infotainment Systems (Score 2) 148

If you're going to do a study on automobile infotainment systems, you need a broader set of data: 46 people with 7 types of systems, 2 of which are very uncommon. This dataset sounds like they just asked around their office and of the 46 people that work there, only 7 employees had any sort of infotainment system, 3 being the bosses.

Want to do this study right? Go rent 10-12 cars with the various systems, park them at Walmart one day and survey, park them at the mall the next day and survey, park them at the fancy downtown shopping district and survey, and then hold a private dinner for the upper-class folks and survey. 4 distinct groups and hundreds or thousands of data points.

Be sure to include systems that actually are used: Toyota Entune, Ford Sync, GM/Chevrolet Intellilink/MyLink, Honda HondaLink, Dodge/Chrysler Uconnect, Nissan NissanConnect, Mazda, Volkswagen, BMW ConnectedDrive, Mercedes Comand, and Cadillac CUE.

Come on, how many people actually have a Porsche with an infotainment, or a Tesla? Seriously, Ford sold twice as many Fiesta's in the US last year than Tesla has sold total.

Comment Verizon, Sprint, & T-Mobile don't sell iPhones (Score 1) 514

Five things:
  1. 1. When 3 of 4 major carriers don't sell the iPhone, the sales numbers for other devices could be much higher than those of the iPhone.
  2. 2. Android phones are the first phones in a long time to have a mass appeal of "doesn't suck" or "not corporate", i.e. Palm/Windows Mobile and Blackberry.
  3. 3. Consumers that are happy with another carrier, or don't want to switch to ATT, can finally upgrade to a phone with iPhone-like features.
  4. 4. Consumers who were in the market for an iPhone waited for v.4.
  5. 5. Price.

Seems simple enough to me.

Comment Standalone Networks (Score 1) 819

I manage a small group of machines that are connected to each other, but never to the Internet. Our customer asked for the Vista upgrade, paid for proper licensing, we installed Vista in a small test group, customers were happy. Vista failed, customers were extremely unhappy.

This is the sole reason that we haven't migrated all the clients to Vista. And why we had to rollback the test group back to XP. Vista's phone-home cycle is 180 days, then it lies to you and says that "Hardware Changed..." and drops the computer into its restricted use mode.

There is a solution for this problem, Microsoft Key Management Services (KMS). We SAs are ready to deploy KMS, but have run into management resistance for 6+ months now. Vista left such a bad impression with them, they decided to just wait until we migrate to Windows 7 to setup KMS. And that won't happen until the next hardware refresh cycle, so maybe 1Q2011.

Once you have KMS, the 180- to 90-day change really isn't that big of a deal.

Comment Who's hosting the Game? Sony or Publisher/Dev? (Score 4, Interesting) 212

Here's how I see it:
  • Playstation Home? Charge for it. I used it a few times when I first signed up, but it doesn't really do anything. I'm sure the costs outweigh the virtual trinkets and mini games they sell.
  • Playstation Store? Access needs to be free. Any store costs should be included in the price of the game/movie/tv show/theme pack/etc. Plus, on the movies side, it costs enough already to rent or buy movies.
  • Multiplayer Games? Who is hosting the server? EA, R*, etc? The hosting cost should be figured into the price of the game. Or they (Pub/Dev) charge a separate subscription fee. Sony hosting the server? Charge for it, XBox Live style.

I have no issue with paying for PSN as long as the price is reasonable. I paid for XBox Live for years, before I got rid of my XBox. $60/yr is perfect, $5/mo. That's $5m per month with 1m users (random user number). I couldn't see servers, bandwidth, datacenter, licensing, and power costs being beyond $60m per year, but then again, IANA MMO SysAd. Any more than $60, and it will fail. Maybe they could get away with a $100/yr price if they included a full Skype client, with video...maybe.

Comment It was the chipset, stupid (Score 1) 297

I've been looking for a replacement for my 12" G4 Powerbook and looked at the Dell Mini 12. Good dimensions and screen resolution, but what killed it for me was the Intel GMA 500 chipset and Atom N530. Underpowered and overpriced, plus flaky compatibility and lousy battery life. Its like a TFT maker had leftover panels and Intel had the junk leftover from making "quality" GMA 9x0 and N2x0 parts and sold it to Dell real cheap.

Roll in a candy coating and sell it for $100+ more than the good Mini 10 series and presto! A line that will be quickly discontinued because the geeks that actually buy netbooks know better.

Comment Re:Most deserving (Score 1) 829

What's amusing to me is that if you want to education or health care funded in the US, you have to lobby Congress like hell to fund it.

What's amusing to me is that people think education or health care is a proper role for the Federal Government.

What's amusing to me is that people think education or health care is a proper role for unaccountable entities whose primary responsibility is profit.

I don't think Shakrai was implying that education and health care should be run by for-profit corporation. Only that they should not be run by the Federal government. While I like my private health insurance, I believe that education should be run by the local government. Afterall, they should understand the local community better than any bureaucrat in D.C. or a state capital.


Submission + - Behind the Scenes of Star Trek, X-Men Prequels (

Amigori writes: "Star Trek fans interested in some behind-the-scenes, business-oriented info about the new film should pick up today's Wall Street Journal or click here for the story, "Hollywood is Betting on Prequels for This Summer Blockbuster Season." While other titles are mentioned, "X-Men Origins: Wolverine," "Terminator Salvation," and "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra," the article is clearly focused on the Star Trek franchise.

The new "Star Trek" movie, opening next month, boldly goes where no "Trek" film has gone before: back to the beginning. It's set in the decades before the start of the TV series, returning to the young adulthoods of space adventurers James T. Kirk and Spock and their first voyage on the Starship Enterprise.

Some of Hollywood's biggest franchises, including "X-Men" and "Terminator," are taking a similar back-to-the-future approach this summer. To refresh familiar film sagas and grab new audiences, studios are increasingly offering up stories that trace the early years of popular characters and tell epics from their beginnings.


Comment Game Starvation! (Score 3, Interesting) 272

As a gamer, I've had my eye on a PSP for a while now, mainly for the piracy/hack factor. Its a nice little system that would be great for emulation and PSP games. But what is killing this system, other than the DS, is the Game Starvation. All one needs to do is compare the review lists at IGN (or your favorite game site). Games come out weekly for the DS, in bulk. Games come out in spurts for the PSP, a few here and there, sometimes months apart.

  • DS = Lots of games, great and shovelware, ports, remakes, and originals
  • PSP = Few games, mostly PSOne ports or remakes, not much original content outside of LocoRoco and Patapon. It doesn't help that the devs half-ass most of the ports/remakes.

Plus when you go to the store, the PSP section always looks like a clearance section. Few games, broken/off displays, lots of empty spaces signifying "better days," and the same few crap games they had last time you stopped in.

Games sell systems. And "50 million" PSP gamers should be large enough to sell new, quality content to. Lack of games and a great system to do emulation on equals high piracy numbers. And lack of software sales is DIRECTLY ATTRIBUTABLE to available content. Just put together a Virtual Console like Nintendo with legal emulation and see how your software sales do.

Sony, want to turn your PSP software sales around? Then 1) sell the damn thing to developers! Your claimed user base should be more than enough to attract some good shops with interesting ideas and IP. 2) Hire new merchandise reps. Your store displays suck. 3) Keep publishing older games and keep them in stock. To sell more games they have to be available. 4) Stop trying to make every game a port or offshoot of a PS2/PS3 game.

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