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Comment Re:Not necessarily clueless; potentially pragmatis (Score 1) 195

Short summary: If the license says something that is enforceable in court, odds are super good that you can't get it removed with anything short of an activist campaign. [ ... ] If the license says something that is not enforceable in court, why should you care at the outset?

And just how the fsck am I supposed to know which is which? Is litigation of every $(GOD)-damned term necessary to determine validity? And why is the onus on me to prove the term is bullshit? It seems to me that a "contract" that purports to absolve the vendor of any and all responsibility for defects in their product, and then further forces the consumer to give up their right to file suit in a state or Federal court, or be a member of a class action, and instead be compelled into neutral (ha ha) arbitration, would be unenforceable. But, lo and behold, they've been deemed valid. And all this comes into existence by merely clicking an on-screen button.

In other words, a vendor can impose an onerous, heavy-handed, one-sided contract on someone via little more than merest assertion.

...And you, as a professional working in this space, haven't got the slightest problem with this?

Comment Re:That's why we wear watches on our left hands. (Score 1) 105

...about a hundred years ago when people switched from pocket watches to wrist watches, [ ... ]

That reminds me: Why is no one offering a smart watch in a pocket watch form factor? You'd lose pulse rate measurement, but you'd still get the rest of the fitness tracking movements. You'd also get a larger case -- allowing for larger displays and batteries -- and placing a pocket watch on a charging cradle at night wouldn't seem quite as odd as a wristwatch.

Using a smart pocket watch would also obviate the described attack.

Comment Re:Digitally Imported (Score 1) 316

DI.fm is still the first thing I think of for streaming music, since it's been around for nearly 20 years.

However, you must admit the service has become much more hostile lately. Once upon a time, Ari had a Web page with a handful of URLs. Copy-paste them in to your streaming app -- any streaming app, not just DI's proprietary one -- and start enjoying music. Then they started demanding you create an account if you wanted to use their proprietary Android app. Then the streaming URLs started getting rotated for no reason; you had to go back to the Web site to get the latest ones. Then the streaming URLs disappeared off their page entirely, replaced with a ( crap ) in-browser Flash-based player -- you had to practically Wireshark the site to get the streaming URLs out so you could listen with your preferred player.

Now, they've broken the open streaming URLs entirely, and have imposed a limit of 30 minutes listening time for non-registered listeners. And they still spray ads at you.

It was much more fun when Ari was running the whole thing himself. Every so often in the early days, the playlist would stop (!?), and cut over to an open mic -- you could hear Ari working on something in the background. One time, I sent him an email telling him the stream had died. A few seconds later, I heard the Outlook Bell, then a few keystrokes, a couple of mouse clicks, and the stream started up again.

Comment Re:Quite smart strategic move (Score 1) 365

My armchair analysis is rather more cynical.

Microsoft is trying to position itself at the chokepoints of primary office/corporate functions. They already own the document preparation space in the form of Office, and have a huge chunk of the messaging and calendaring space through Outlook/Exchange.

Despite the fact that GMail is vastly superior to Outlook365 -- hell, mutt is better than Outlook -- there's always some so-and-so in the C-suite who's familiar with Outlook and refuses to learn or use anything else. Eventually the impedance mismatch between Outlook/Exchange and the rest of the entire fscking universe forces the company to adopt Office/Outlook/Exchange.

By acquiring LinkedIn, Microsoft can now attempt domination of the HR/recruiting functions as well. Want to apply for a job? Sorry, you'll have to apply through LinkedIn; it's inextricably integrated with the rest of our software. Want to communicate with a candidate? IMAP clients don't preserve the metadata tracking the recruiting process; please use an Outlook client. Want to submit a resume? It better be in .DOC format. Oh, and they'll probably throw in a gratuitous Silverlight dependency just for shits and giggles...

Personally, I can't see how people keep falling for the same sack of crap over and over and over again.

Comment Re:Red X? (Score 2) 564

The MS lawyers would have tried to stop this. This will absolutely lead to a class action lawsuit [ ... ]

Uh, no. Microsoft's lawyers already have this base covered:

10. Binding Arbitration and Class Action Waiver if You Live in (or if a Business Your Principal Place of Business is in) the United States.

We hope we never have a dispute, but if we do, you and we agree to try for 60 days to resolve it informally. If we can't, you and we agree to binding individual arbitration before the American Arbitration Association ("AAA") under the Federal Arbitration Act ("FAA"), and not to sue in court in front of a judge or jury. Instead, a neutral arbitrator will decide and the arbitrator's decision will be final except for a limited right of appeal under the FAA. Class action lawsuits, class-wide arbitrations, private attorney-general actions, and any other proceeding where someone acts in a representative capacity aren't allowed. Nor is combining individual proceedings without the consent of all parties. "We," "our," and "us" includes Microsoft, the device manufacturer, and software installer. [emphasis in original]

-- Windows 10 license "agreement"

Comment Re:ewhac Predicts! (Score 1) 564

According to my readings, it can be done, and it doesn't necessarily involve the use of revocation lists; you simply delete the key/cert that authenticates Windows from the DB. You can modify the DB/DBX key store at run time all you want, provided your mods can be authenticated with one of the Key Exchange Keys. Microsoft's key is pre-loaded on to every PC out there, so they could trivially modify the DB and DBX stores to remove the entries for Win 7 and 8.

Even if they can't directly modify the DB/DBX directly from Windows, they could easily drop a new executable in the UEFI boot sequence -- authenticated by their Secure Boot cert -- which would do it for them.

So, yes, based on those readings, I regard this as technically feasible.

Comment Re:Time for a class action. (Score 1) 564

Bottom line is it's time to start the class-action lawsuit.

You can't. You "agreed" not to in the EULA, which forces you in to individual neutral arbitration. The Supreme Court upheld this practice as lawful.

But do please tell me again how EULAs/shrinkwrap licenses are fair, equitable, and necessary...

Comment ewhac Predicts! (Score 1) 564

My friends: So convinced am I of Microsoft's perfidy that, some time in the next 6-24 months, Microsoft will attempt to revoke the Secure Boot keys for Windows 7 and 8, and every machine with a UEFI BIOS still running 7 and 8 will refuse to boot. The government will do nothing. The industry press, though publicly wringing its hands in consternation, will do nothing. The only proffered "fix" will be a Windows 10 install.

"Can you prove it won't happen?"

Comment Oxygenating your clothes gets a lot of smells out (Score 1) 142

Typical "Oxi-clean" (hydrogen peroxide) additives often work well.

Also you can use an ozone generator and pump your closet full of ozone for a similar effect.

Ozonating your whole house can get rid of some stubborn odors.

(Be aware though that excessive use of either method will cause some rubber products to break down faster than with normal exposure. Also, if you ozonate your house, don't be in it at the time.)

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