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Comment Re:In secret?! (Score 2, Interesting) 214

Yeah, but if they do it in secret then ratify it, it won't really be law. Turns out the government can't enact domestic laws simply by signing treaties - or if they try they won't necessarily stand up in court.

The fact that ACTA is likely to contain punitive measures without a proper hearing will get up most judges noses. I would think it's probably unconstitutional and may even be an act of treason attempting to put the interests and wishes of a corporation or group of corporations above Crown and law. Run the bastards through if they try.

Most judges don't like it when an elected government tries to go beyond their powers - especially when they remove due process and oversight by the judiciary.

Comment Re:The EASY way out! (Score 1) 538

Joblessness is a state that can be altered for the better, with comparitive ease.

But if you have a terminal illness and are on, or inching closer and closer to, your death bed...guess what? There is no chance of you getting any better; in fact, it's all downhill from here on out. Why force other people to prolong their suffering? Why not let them tie up their loose ends and then off themselves, if they so desire, before they turn into half-conscious, drooling burdens?

It's plenty natural to end something destined for failure, before it ends itself. Did you ever drop a class in school/college? Did you ever re-load your game from the last save point because you knew your character was about to die? Ever cancel a project because you knew it was going to run over budget?

Obviously none of these examples are as heavyweight as the question of euthanasia but they demonstrate a similar idea: if the end result is inevitable, why not just take a shortcut that involves less pain, less suffering, less stress, less waste?

This post basically reflects my idea that suicide should be permissible for patients with terminal illnesses and no hope for survival (or rather, no hope for any sustainable quality of life). Euthanasia for people who could survive or show improvement, is a much grayer area to me though.

Comment Re:Most people simply don't think about security (Score 1) 216

You make some valid points, but I don't think the myth of the "educatable user" is a myth at all. There's a reason why most security experts, and AV-software vendors, emphasize the need for educating users. It's not to deflect responsibility from the software. It's not to undermine their own business model. It's because you need, both, reasonably secure software and reasonably educated users. Sure, you can't expect users to be perfect; even the security experts themselves are fallible. But without basic user precautions and some level of basic security sense, even the most security-hardened system will still be as vulnerable as if no software security had been implemented at all. Otherwise, you're basically only left with the option of making "idiot-proof" software that one would use by choice.

Let's face it, perfect security is often impractical or just infeasible. Many people have to work with Windows and outdated versions of the IE browser in environments where the principle of least privilege just can't be practically implemented. In those cases it makes sense to minimize risk by educating users and setting the appropriate company policies. Heck, it makes sense to do so even outside of such extreme cases. It's about having a balanced security implementation (not putting all your eggs in one basket).

Just recently there was a story on /. about how some penetration tests were conducted, demonstrating the vulnerability of financial institutions to (relatively unsophisticated) social engineering attacks. If you're in the financial/banking industry and you have "uneducatable users" in your company, then they need to be replaced immediately, as they're the biggest threat to your system. It's cheaper, easier, and more realistic to train (or replace) an employee than to try to design a security system that is idiot-proof or is immune to social-engineering attacks.

So the problem isn't the myth of uneducatable users, but rather the complacency we've developed towards walking attack vectors on the company payroll. Perhaps if companies didn't resign themselves to the fact that users have to be stupid, this wouldn't be such a self-fulfilling prophecy. Spend a little more money to attract/hire higher quality job candidates if you have to. All the stories in the news of massive data leaks and other security breaches should be enough to convince most intelligent company execs that this is not something that an organization to whom security is crucial should skimp on.

And who knows? If people start losing their jobs because they're downloading and running executables from unknown sources, or they're giving their password to anyone who bothers to ask, or are otherwise computer security illiterate, then perhaps they'll start making an effort to learn. This isn't the 1990's. Personal computers have become an everyday appliance like the TV or telephone. There's an entire generation of workers out there today who've been brought up on computers and the internet. It's not very hard to find an accountant, or secretary, or VP of sales, etc. who are tech-savvy enough to not open up your network to outside attackers every time they're at a computer.

Comment Re:"Committed Suicide?" (Score 1) 538

"Suicide" is a word - whether you connect it to depression or not is your own twisting of the term. If you kill yourself it is suicide, plain and simple. That can be good, bad, accepted, or non-accepted, but the term itself doesn't care. I could equally say that "euthanasia" sounds like he was gassed to death, when in reality he shot himself.

Comment Re:Bad economics (Score 1) 809

'People sitting around doing nothing is wasted capital. Even if you have to borrow to get them to do work, you have produced something greater than your investment.'

Not all work creates value. Everything you do is work, including what you do at home. Unless you have those people creating value with those jobs then you are wasting capital by employing them as well.

Comment Re:Bunk! (Score 1) 1079

A) you only save it on one side (the laptop case does not generally extend below the battery case - the bottom of the battery case is part of the laptop case.

Arrrgh, such nonsense! When have you ever seen a laptop battery that is only cased on one side, and the naked cells are exposed on the top?

My cell phone's battery is about 3mm

Yes, and much of that thickness is due to the protective casing! If it weren't encased, it would be significantly smaller.

In summary, eliminating those parts of the case that make the battery removable (the chemicals still need to be separated from the computer components, of course) probably saves you at most 20% (on a 17" desktop replacement, probably closer to 10%).

I think the calculations of Apple's engineers, who actually built the thing, would be more reliable than some random internet guy who apparently doesn't understand much about battery construction or laptop engineering.


Submission + - Bill Gates No Longer World's Richest Man (

Armadni General writes: "The Guardian (UK) is reporting that Mexican telecommunications tycoon Carlos Slim, after a surge in profits of his America Movil mobile phone service, has overtaken Bill Gates as the world's richest man. From the article, "this is estimated to have boosted his fortune to an estimated $67.8bn (£33.6bn) — equivalent to 8% of Mexico's gross domestic product — compared with $59.2bn for the Microsoft mogul, putting him in the lead by a decisive $8.6bn.""

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