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Comment Re:It's called a team (Score 1) 426

Agreed. If people work overtime, the boss should do everything possible to support the team.

I'd also like to add that in this day and age, there really isn't much need for developers to work over time in the office. If managers want developers to work extra time, they should be OK with them doing it on their own terms. If the developer prefers working in the office, then great. But many developers (particularly the more senior ones) have families. Letting them go home, have dinner with the family then work later in the evening will help productivity.

I suppose there are some situations where working in the office is required in order to be productive, but with all the advances in networking technology it's more rare.

Comment Micro-management (Score 1) 1019

Normally, I'd suggest that your boss read Peopleware, but that's probably how he got on this kick because (as I remember), this issue is addressed there. Apparently, there have been studies that show that people are less likely to find "shortcuts" to problems. It's funny though, that one of the main points there is that developers need a quiet environment to be productive.

For me, I tend to agree that almost all types of music reduce my abilities to solve problems. For repetitive stuff, like writing documentation or maybe certain types of specs, it's fine for me. But YMMV.

However, that doesn't mean that a boss should create rules like he's trying to do here. He has a small penis, almost for definitely. He's flexing his muscles. It might be better for him to identify employees that are having trouble and work with them 1-on-1 to come up with a plan to address the issues. There will be more than 1 issue for some...and less than 1 for others. So a case-by-case basis is the best approach. But that's too much work and it doesn't prove to everyone that his penis is actually "quite big".

At various points in my career, I've been a manager. So I understand your manager's problem, but he's making it worse (for the record, my penis is "average sized"). A better approach might be to talk to each developer individually and bring it to their attention that listening to music has been shown to decrease productivity (provide them with something to read about it) and ask them for their thoughts. Also ask if they'd be willing to give it a try. That approach may work in a group too. If the developer is unwilling to give it a try, then maybe they are a problem.

Now, noise in a cubicle environment is a huge problem. Get creative about it. This is actually an opportunity for you to take a leadership role. Maybe developers could work at home for part of the day. Maybe the company could spring for noise canceling headsets.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

Wow, you really do seem to enjoy disagreeing. I'm not sure why you question my open-mindedness. Obviously I have preconceived notions, but I did/do want to understand the other side of the story. Not really thanks to you, since your comments aren't really constructive, but there have been many well thought out responses.

Calling people ignorant seems to make you feel smarter. Have you consulted a therapist lately? You paint the picture of a self-conscious nerd always trying to prove to others that he's smarter and more logical than they are. That's probably holding you back in life.

But I'll let you have the last word on this. I'm sure you'll find something to call me ignorant about. Fire away.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

That assertion again. They told no one what to upload. The site contained all sorts of content.

Did they ask that people who use their (your?) site respect copyrights? If they did not, then that helps form my opinion. Do you need absolute certainty to form opinions? Or just absolute certainty before you'll bite the hand that helps you get free stuff?

Since I don't know their true motivation, I can look for clues.

Ah yes, pointless speculation to support your groundless assertion.

Well, I admitted that it was speculation. Pointless and groundless are the words you're using to make yourself feel smarter. But it's also speculation on your part to say that they've behaved ethically in the whole matter.

Regarding the irrelevance of the DMCA outside the US, well I know people wish that the US didn't have influence over the governments of the world. The world may be a better place if we didn't. They may regret their (your?) position. We'll see.

People certainly seem to enjoy the intellectual property that come out of the framework of the US economic system. So in some senses, they want the goods but without the restrictions that helped produce them.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

As for not having copyprotection, Firefox and Linux come to mind as being two very good pieces of software that I payed nothing for. Even mIRC does not require you to pay for it, even though I did.

All very good products. I use Firefox and Linux and love them both. But keep in mind that Firefox started out life as a commercial product (Netscape Navigator). It was open sourced after it got rolled over by a monopoly. Linux is a better example, but it's taken a very long time to reach the levels of success that it's seeing now. You could also argue that Linux isn't innovative in a technical sense (hopefully that comment doesn't start an OS war).

Hopefully you'd agree that Firefox and Linux both benefit from copyright protection. I mean, without it, what's to stop a company from completely ripping off all the important/good code from those products and putting them into their products and giving no credit whatsoever?

I belive credit should be given where it's due, I still support the existence licenses but the whole "Without copyprotection nothing gets developed" seems a bit extreme to me.

I don't think that, but I do believe that progress/innovation happens faster with copyright protection.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

Are you saying that they don't know that it facilitates the copying of copyrighted materials?

That is irrelevant. They can't be expected to look into all the content on the site. Just like your ISP can't spy on all its customers just because it knows that some of them are bound to be breaking the law.

First a groundless assertion, now irrelevant.

I don't know the people who ran the site. I don't know what their intentions were (neither do you, I suspect), but from an outsider's perspective it looks like their intention was to support copyright infringement. Since I don't know their true motivation, I can look for clues. The word "Pirate" appears in the name of the site. That's suspicious to me. Is it a baseless suspicion? Perhaps, but to me it's incriminating. Probably doesn't help their court case all that much either. Let's just say that their lawyers probably wouldn't advise them to put that word in the name.

Was there anything on their site that discourages copyright infringement? I really don't know, but I somehow doubt it (definitely could be wrong here). I seem to remember reading an article that said their web site bragged that they couldn't be prosecuted. Suspicious to me (speaking as someone who isn't a lemming disciple).

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

But I'm talking about the ethics of intentionally helping the person who made it available.

Blatant lie. The site lets you upload torrents for anything and everything. TPB doesn't tell people to upload illegal stuff.

Hmm. Blatant lie. Odd choice of words. Maybe you think I misunderstand the situation. But a lie?

I mean, TPB obviously knows the site facilitates the copying of copyrighted materials. It is called The PIRATE Bay.

Groundless assertion. Rejected.

Are you saying that they don't know that it facilitates the copying of copyrighted materials? Or maybe you're programmed to reject all things that indicate a conflict in your strict moral code.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

Copying a file is not stealing. Stealing is depriving the owner of something. The original file is not deleted when I copy it, hence I'm not depriving anybody of anything.

Of course you knew what I meant. It is copyright infringement. So I shall rephrase since you did not understand the intent of my original question. Why is making it easy for people to infringe on copyright ethical?

If you're saying that there should be no copyright protection at all, I'd ask you to ask yourself what kinds of works (movies, music, software, etc.) would be produced in that world? Copyrights are a financial incentive for people to create works that are capital intensive. It's one of the things that keeps economies growing. Maybe you don't want economies that grow. At least you'd have a consistent position then.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

I wanted to see the other side of the story. The "my kids can't eat" comment was a different way of saying that "I can't make a living if everyone infringes on my copyright." That seemed obvious to me, but maybe not to someone who's in a disagreeable mood (others interpreted it in the way in which it was intended).

So, I truly wanted everyone with an opinion they feel strongly about to respond. I've read every comment and tried to understand the author's perspective and rationalize it with my own. I know, trying to see things from someone else's perspective is something that can get you banned from Slashdot so I should probably stop.

I usually don't post to Slashdot because nothing good comes from it, but I saw this as an opportunity to understand what others are thinking on this. I viewed it as completely insane that TPB is getting any support, especially from a group of people (Slashdot readers) that commonly builds software. Even the people who write open source software should want copyrights to exist in order to prevent companies from taking the code they worked hard on and profiting from it. It's a two-way street, after all.

What I saw in a number of the responses was ignorance on how copyrights benefit innovation. I mean, it's possible that I'm the one who's wrong on that front, but I've read a couple of books on economics and that was one of the takeaways.

I also see now that some people are supporting TPB because they hope that it leads to improvement in copyright laws. While I might not agree with the tactics, I can respect the goal and that maybe that's the only way real change comes here. At least there's some moral justification there.

So yes, I clearly have an opinion on this and it came through in my post/question. But I wouldn't have posted it if I didn't want to understand other people's perspective.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

The answer to your question is pretty simple, really. It's really asking why copyright law exists in the first place. It's there so that companies have incentive to create things that cost a lot up front to make. If you had an idea that was innovative and would change the world, but would require you to take a year off in order to build it. Would you do it? Without any copyright protection people would be less likely to do it.

Think about all of the things that would not have been created without the company (or person) who created them having copyright protection. People get mad when the rich get richer, but really the only way they get richer is if we enjoy what they produce. If you take away copyright protection, how many good movies in the history of movies would get created? How many software products get written? Not many.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

It's not stealing - nobody loses anything that they own.

It's copyright infringement, which is against the law. Some people refer to it as stealing, which is technically incorrect. You know what was meant.

Why is software the exception to this simple observation of reality?

Pretty much anything can be represented as ones and zeros man. Software starts off as some higher level language (e.g. C) and eventually boils down to ones and zeros. You can boil pretty much anything down to ones and zeros. So you're basically saying that if you can represent something as a number then copyright doesn't apply. If you take that approach, then pretty much nothing can be copyright.

Copyrights (and patents) create a financial incentive for people to invest the capital necessary to innovate. Without copyrights and patents, you wouldn't have many of the things that you use on a daily basis.

I'd agree that the copyright and patent laws need to be changed to reflect the modern realities. But to say that it doesn't apply (or doesn't apply to the things you want to copy) is rubbish.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

And since I also doubt that you possess such information your "my kids can't eat" statement comes across as either ignorant, manipulative or both.

It was manipulative in that I wanted to elicit a response, which I did.

Without financial incentive, there will be less innovation. Take all the major copyrighted works that you use/enjoy that were produced by big companies. Of those, ask yourself which ones would have really been produced if those companies didn't have financial incentive to do so. There are some things that got produced for free (Linux), but it's taken MUCH longer than it took to produce the commercial alternative. Also, in the case of Linux, it only really got good when big companies started getting behind it as a way to fight of Microsoft (maybe that's debatable, but it's my view).

Also ask yourself why communism never produced a decent car.

To be clear, copyright and patent laws definitely need to be reformed. They're stuck in the 20th century. No doubt about that, but we need them in some form in order to spur innovation.

Comment Re:I know you are, but what am I? (Score 1) 1870

I'm feeling snarky too. I'm thinking you're either sleep deprived and not thinking clearly, or maybe you haven't studied economics in college yet.

One thing that people consistently ignore is that without monetary rewards, people (and companies) will not invest in the research and development necessary to produce innovation. Are drug companies going to invest in the massive amounts of money necessary to produce new drugs without financial incentive to do so? Are companies going to invest enough to create the next World of Warcraft without financial incentive? Would Wolverine ever have been made without a financial incentive to do so? Like it or not, the quickest way for a government to ensure innovation is to create financial incentives for people to do it.

Copyrights are an incentive. So are patents. The laws surrounding both of them are screwed up in many, many ways. So let's reform them so they reflect modern realities. Maybe TPB are like the Black Panthers and are trying to create change in society. Or maybe they're just a bunch of yahoos trying to "stick it to the man." I don't really know. I can support the former. The latter, not so much.

A lot of the arguments I've seen about this posted here exhibit a form of cognitive dissonance. In essence, the argument factors down to this: I want free stuff, therefore I will reject any laws and arguments that prevent me from getting my free stuff. Yes, people and companies will get rich when they produce things that people want. And they'll twist the laws to prolong their revenue streams and make themselves richer. And they'll hide behind the laws to prevent business models from changing (even though you can't really do that over the long term). But to say that copyright laws are bad for society because people are getting rich is pretty silly. Ask yourself why communism never produced a good car.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

They want the moral high ground as well. It's bizarre.

I do wish it'd be possible for someone to do some sort of poll. I'm curious to know what percentage of people think that companies that abuse the GPL should be punished, but think that it's OK to copy music/movies/software because they think current copyright laws are bad.

There seems to be a fair amount of cognitive dissonance going on here.

Comment Re:Let me be the first one to say it ... (Score 1) 1870

I think the perspective that others have helped me see is that these guys are viewed as reformers. They think copyright law sucks and they're going to do everything they can to reform the law. I can actually respect that. Really. Kind of like Civil Disobedience. I get it and I can respect it.

Still, I have a hard time believing that even a small fraction of the people utilizing TPB are looking at things that way. They just want free shit and aren't concerned with the ethics behind it.

Is there anything that you can point to that shows that there's more public domain stuff available on TPB than copyrighted work? Doesn't seem right to me.

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