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Comment Re:Another card? (Score 2, Informative) 619

Don't worry, the UK government has been pushing for this for years. Technically it already exists, and about 5 volunteers have signed up for it. On the other hand, while certain groups have IIRC already been forced to have one, other test groups have outright rejected it.

With an election coming up, I haven't seen a single reference in favour of ID cards from the Labour lot who are in power at the moment, and both the other big parties have said they will scrap the scheme. It's become a political nightmare for the government.

FWIW, the really insidious thing here in the UK isn't actually the cards, it's the all-in-one database that is behind them. Curiously, the Conservatives (who are likely to win power later this year) seem to have been a bit quiet about that.

Comment Re:Why go to community college? (Score 1) 425

It actually can.
I did this very thing some 25+ years ago now.
though my highschool was paying for my community college
at the time. The was pre-AP classes and this was their version.

It was a very useful thing to do community college before
I went on to a real university. not for everyone but
it was like a halfway program for higher education.

Comment Quite an arbitrary threshold. (Score 1) 15

Senior year is no less beneficial than the years before it.

In fact, education has exponential rewards as a function of time invested. I'm a 4th year graduate student and without a doubt, I have learned more in each year than I learned in the year before it, going back as far as I can remember. This is because I don't just learn facts -- I learn how to learn faster. On top of that, I learn a lot of facts as well...and on top of that, the more facts you know, the more you can put new facts into perspective.

Anyone who thinks they have finished learning by 11th graduate (a stupidly arbitrary threshold if I may say so) probably hasn't done much learning to speak of...

My point is not that 12th grade is important for everyone. Some people will go on to be janitors or other members of blue collar society where it is not necessary to read, write, etc....and that's perfectly fine. But if that's FINE as far as the state is concerned, then there's no reason to make the first 3 years mandatory either. In fact, I like the idea of school being entirely optional.

Well, there is just one caveat -- if school is entirely optional than we may need to make suffrage a privilige rather than an inalienable right. This would be necessary to avoid all the uneducated idiot masses from voting the next GW into office without any clue of what they are voting for.

Comment Re:They need to fix the site first. (Score 2, Interesting) 329

What use would HTML5 have if Google insists on streaming crystal-clear high-definition unskippable ads to me in a few seconds, but streams the video to me bit-by-bit to the point where it takes five minutes to watch a one minute HD video.

Boy, I couldn't agree more with that!

I recently switched the "Try HTML5" thing on, and I've got to say, they need to assemble and download those clips a helluva lot faster. They've made the site nearly un-fun.

To the point that I'm about ready to "un-volunteer" to be an HTML5 Guinea Pig...

Comment I'm not optimistic (Score 4, Insightful) 166

A number of factors are likely to keep Stephen Conroy in after the election this year.

In Australian election ballots for the senate we select one box above the line or number all the boxes below the line. To elaborate: below the line we number all of the possible candidates in order of preference (and we have to number all of them in order for that vote to be valid. Above the line we choose one political party who will be choosing the below the line preferences for those voters. Such preferences are selected based on the principles of the political party, on a reciprocal basis or for attempted political gain. This was how we ended up with Steve Fielding.

Due to the extreme number of senate candidates in Australian state and federal elections (last time I voted in the South Australian state election I think there was 46) most people elect to have their favoured political party choose their preferences for them. Based on the traditionalist attitudes of voters that revolve around biases, prejudices and/or traditionalism (my family has always voted for party X) the parties with the most senators tend to be Labor and Liberal, Conroy being a Labor senator who was elected even during the years that the Liberal/National Coalition had a majority in both houses of government.

As I now live in Victoria I'll certainly be voting in favour of candidates that are not him in the election some time this year. However I don't trust the preferences of other parties, nor do I want to re-elect members of the party of fear and xenophobia, so I'll be voting below the line.

But you can count on the majority voting above the line.

Comment Yay /b/!!! (Score 2, Insightful) 166

First off, yay to the /b/tards - I had been watching this a few days before it started and am proud of them. Second, this is from a long time ago and a view I whole-heartedly agree with. Written by the Rotten.com Staff, The definition of obscenity, according to the Supreme Court and known informally as the Miller test, is: * must appeal to the prurient interest of the average person * must describe sexual conduct in a way that is "patently offensive" to community standards, and * when taken as a whole, it "must lack serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value" Certain people (including parents and schoolteachers) have complained to us and stated that rotten.com should not be "allowed" on the net, since children can view images on our site. One US schoolteacher wrote us a very angry email that complained some of her students had bookmarked images on this site, that our site shouldn't be on the net, and other claptrap. This is our respone. The net is not a babysitter! Children should not be roaming the Internet unsupervised any more than they should be roaming the streets of New York City unsupervised. We cannot dumb the Internet down to the level of playground. Rotten dot com serves as a beacon to demonstrate that censorship of the Internet is impractical, unethical, and wrong. To censor this site, it is necessary to censor medical texts, history texts, evidence rooms, courtrooms, art museums, libraries and other sources of information vital to functioning of free society. Nearly all of the images we have online are not even prurient, and would thus not fall under any definition of obscenity. Any images which we have of a sexual nature are in a context which render them far from obscene, in any United States jurisdiction. Some of the images may be offensive, but that has never been a crime. Life is sometimes offensive. You have to expect that. The images we find most obscene are those from book burnings. Please remember that no child has access to the Internet without the active consent of an adult. And absolutely no child should be left on the Internet alone. Supervision of children remains the responsibility of parents and teachers, as it always has and always will. The rotten staff, April 1997

Comment Queue the remakes... (Score 1) 474

Why not! Every other story in Hollywood gets remade eventually anyway. Some good (Battlestar Galactica, Star Trek), Some not so well (Psycho, Godzilla, Planet of the Apes...the list goes on). What will happen to the franchise when some young rebel takes the Star Wars story and tells it in their own style? I mean, aside from the massive merchandising tribute that would still need to be paid to Lucas, of course. What if JJ Abrams took on 'Empire'? Not much of a Michael Bay fan, but do think the battle for Endor in ROTJ might be scrapped in favor of the original battle for Kashyyyk with him at the controls? It could happen...

Comment Re:Quis ipsos custodiet custodes? (Score 1) 697

>>>The very reason we HAVE a SCOTUS is to protect the individuals from majority abuse.

But the SCOTUS is part of the U.S. Government. It often acts like a rubberstamp for the Congress and the Executive branches, and when it doesn't rubberstamp, then the president sometimes threatens the court (see FDR and the Court-packing Scandal).

The U.S. Government should not be self-policing itself. That's why it's necessary to have an independent party, i.e. the States, be granted the ability to nullify unconstitutional laws. They created the Constitution - they ought to have at least some power to enforce it and nullify unconstitutional laws - just like any other binding contract.

Comment Re:Simpsons Already Did It! (Score 1) 673

It's a fascination with young women. Most women who've had kids (nowadays that means they are in their late 30s) are in fact physically exhausted, almost infertile, and visibly dying. And large breasts usually come with ugly fat deposits elsewhere. Ripeness and even over-ripeness have their appeal, but so do freshness and physical perfection.

Comment Re:And if every car was speed limited (Score 1) 1634

You would have far less problems with speeding if all cars just work and had a speed limiter installed that just worked.

Some cars are configured this way already.

There would be less theft if every car was bio-keyed to the person and every person tracked...

You mean like the devices installed in some people convicted of a DUI?

Do I need to go on?

Yes, since you provided no example that was useful to your point, you should probably go on.

Why are the privacy nutcases always so ready to imagine the most terrible wrongs about potential abuse of power by the government, but think it is super okay to give all control to a corporation?

Because I HAVE to deal with the government. I don't have to deal with any particular corporation, I can use an alternative or not use them at all.

I really don't know if your kind can ever learn, there have been enough example shown that when companies get to comfortable with themselves, it is bad for their customers.

So because someone doesn't share your point of view they are incapable of learning? No one is arguing that companies can't do bad things, just right now, Apple isn't, so no one cares. Sure, they probably will eventually, but why give up something you can use now in exchange for the possibility (however likely) that it may be something you don't want to use in the future? Most people are OK with the appstore and the way Apples devices work right now, so they buy them. If they become unhappy in the future, they'll stop buying them.

Cable companies have a tendancies to think everyone must have TV so they can do whatever they want because they have a monopoly, except more and more people are ditching cable entirely in favor of other sources of media or just foregoing the content completely cause its really not that good. When enough of their customers stop paying, they'll change or go away, either way, we win, so your argument that Apple may go bad is just silly. Of course they'll try to go bad, they want to make as much money as possible. At that point we'll deal with it, until then we'll enjoy the ride.

The FSF has some points, but they are also well off the extremist deep end so often that no one except other nutjobs really give a shit what they say anymore. They've cried wolf so many times that they've lost clout. Doesn't matter if they are right or wrong, the only people that give a shit are a tiny percentage of the population without enough people to matter to anyone.

If you want to see why the FSF is right, install IE6 as your main and only browser.

I've got several machines that are clean installs of Windows with 1 or 2 specific apps on them, completely unpatched, running IE6, which occasionally I'll use to browse something on the Internet. Still no infections. Of course, I go to sites I know are safe, generally to get documentation or info about the apps running on those machines for various reasons. Am I supposed to be concerned about the fact that it doesn't render right (it does good enough that I can get the job done as needed) or that I may get infected (still hasn't happened)? Other than being several years old and well known for exploiting I dont get your point. I fail to see how IE6 differs from Firefox 1.0 in either respect. Yes, if you use old outdated software its more likely to not work with current data and more likely someone will know of the exploits in it. Very good, common sense 101 there.

Comment Re:They're artificial limitations. That's the prob (Score 3, Insightful) 1634

Sure, tell the manufacture.

Slashdot is not the manufacture of the car or the iPad, so bitching here isn't doing anything other than trolling.

My father used to sit on the couch and whine, bitch and moan about politicians, but never once did he leave the house to tell anyone outside of it how he felt.

His bitching was useless and annoying to those around him, just like the posts to this effect here.

With a slight difference, if no one buys a product, it won't stick around and other ideas will be needed to stay in business.

Considering the way iPhone/iPod sales go ... I'd say that the complaints here are from such a tiny group that no one gives a flying fuck.

The irony is that this isn't even new to the iPhone. It wasn't the first iPod with apps you know?

Comment Re:Dear FSF (Score 1) 1634

"bullshit publicity"

I'm sure the reality distortion field will have waned in 60 days and sales will be driven by the actual in-hand experience people have. If they like it, they'll buy it, otherwise they won't. Personally I'm not passing judgement until I get to play with one. I can see really great use-cases for it, especially in areas that I've been annoyed with using either my laptop or smart phone for, but will it really fill the niche? That remains to be seen.

Comment Re:Why do I care about Google contributing to SS? (Score 1) 339

that would be fantastic if we could opt out of government programs here in australia. I'm one of those people the current government keeps insisting is one of the "rich", but when i'm bearly able to afford to buy a house to live in it hardly feels like it.

i've worked hard my entire life, and will more then likely NEVER call on social security of any kind. i pay for private health cover as well. seems so unfair that i have to support all these blood suckers on long term welfare.

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