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The Moral Dilemma of Driverless Cars: Save The Driver or Save The Crowd? 364 writes: What should a driverless car with one rider do if it is faced with the choice of swerving off the road into a tree or hitting a crowd of 10 pedestrians? The answer depends on whether you are the rider in the car or someone else is, writes Peter Dizikes at MIT News. According to recent research most people prefer autonomous vehicles to minimize casualties in situations of extreme danger -- except for the vehicles they would be riding in. "Most people want to live in in a world where cars will minimize casualties," says Iyad Rahwan. "But everybody wants their own car to protect them at all costs." The result is what the researchers call a "social dilemma," in which people could end up making conditions less safe for everyone by acting in their own self-interest. "If everybody does that, then we would end up in a tragedy whereby the cars will not minimize casualties," says Rahwan. Researchers conducted six surveys, using the online Mechanical Turk public-opinion tool, between June 2015 and November 2015. The results consistently showed that people will take a utilitarian approach to the ethics of autonomous vehicles, one emphasizing the sheer number of lives that could be saved. For instance, 76 percent of respondents believe it is more moral for an autonomous vehicle, should such a circumstance arise, to sacrifice one passenger rather than 10 pedestrians. But the surveys also revealed a lack of enthusiasm for buying or using a driverless car programmed to avoid pedestrians at the expense of its own passengers. "This is a challenge that should be on the mind of carmakers and regulators alike," the researchers write. "For the time being, there seems to be no easy way to design algorithms that would reconcile moral values and personal self-interest."

Comment No Incentive to Innovate (Score 1) 141

I purchased the last version of IntelliJ Idea and would upgrade if I see significant incentives in the product to do so. At the moment they seem to be throwing a lot of effort into releasing new products rather than working on existing products.

I can see an advantage for someone who wants the entire suite of products as long as new products are constantly added but not so much for someone who just wants Idea. With a subscription they have no incentive to make a product better as they have you hooked into using that product, if you want to keep using it you need to keep up the subscription.

Personally I can see myself going in other directions for what I want to do now that this has come in.

Submission + - U.S. Government Seeks to Keep Megaupload Money Because Kim Dotcom Is a Fugitive

mrspoonsi writes: On Tuesday, the U.S. Department of Justice told a Virginia federal judge that Kim Dotcom and cohorts have no business challenging the seizure of an estimated $67 million in assets because the Megaupload founder is evading prosecution. The government brought criminal charges against Dotcom in early 2012, but he's been holed up in New Zealand awaiting word on whether he'll be extradited. The government got antsy and this past July, brought a civil complaint for forfeiture in rem, a maneuver to firmly establish a hold over money from bank accounts around the world, luxury cars, big televisions, watches, artwork and other property allegedly gained by Megaupload in the course of crimes. Dotcom is fighting the seizures by questioning the government's basis for asserting a crime, saying "there is no such crime as secondary criminal copyright infringement," as well as challenging how the seized assets are tied to the charges against Dotcom. But according to the U.S. government, Dotcom doesn't get the pleasure of even making the arguments. In a motion to strike, the government cites the doctrine of fugitive disentitlement, which bars a person from using the resources of the court if that person is aware of prosecution and is evading it.

Submission + - CEO: Red Hat is the Kleenex of Linux (

An anonymous reader writes: A key decision Whitehurst made early on at Red Hat was to focus, taking the company away from side projects in favour of zeroing in on server operating systems and middleware.

“My general observation was that we were a single digit player in the server OS category. If it was Linux OS, we were doing well; it’s how you define the market. Red Hat is almost the Kleenex brand for Linux, the default. You rarely hear about a company failing for focusing too much.”

Whitehurst repositioned Red Hat to focus on the enterprise operating system opportunity together with JBOSS middleware, canning or reducing in scale other projects like the Exchange app store, Mugshot social network and the desktop projects he said the company was “toying with”.

“Today if JBoss were not part of Red Hat it would be the second-largest open source company by a lot, but at the time it was bumping along because we were doing too many things.”

Submission + - UNSW has collected an estimated $100,000 in piracy fines since 2008

Jagungal writes: The SMH reports that The University of NSW says it has issued 238 fines — estimated to total around $100,000 - to students illicitly downloading copyright infringing material such as movies and TV shows on its Wi-Fi network since 2008.

The main issues are that the University is not returning any money to the copyright holders but is instead using the money raised for campus facilities and that it is essentially enforcing a commonwealth law.

Submission + - Amnesty releases anti-spying program for activists 1

mrspoonsi writes: Amnesty International has released a program that can spot spying software used by governments to monitor activists and political opponents. The Detekt software was needed as standard anti-virus programs often missed spying software, it said. Amnesty said many governments used sophisticated spying tools that could grab images from webcams or listen via microphones to monitor people. Karl Zetterlund, a senior researcher at security firm Sentor, said the needs of law enforcement were understandably different to those of the average cyberthief. "Criminals are mainly interested in information that can somehow generate money. Law enforcement spyware may only need to collect a few pieces of identifying information, such as a net address, from the computer," he said. "Generally, policeware may be better at hiding, as normal malware often aims for strength in numbers and spreading is more important than passing under the radar." There had also been cases in the past, he said, when computer security companies collaborated with governments to ignore spyware they found planted on machines.

Comment Personally I still like the KDE Philosophy (Score 5, Interesting) 267

Personally I still like KDE's way of thinking about things, that you are far better off creating multiple workspaces all based on a common desktop environment that suit different types of hardware (Desktop, Netbook and future touch interfaces) rather than creating a monolithic interface that tries to bridge across all types of hardware it might be used on.

In any case anything is better than Unity and they both beat the rubbish Windows 8 interface.

Comment Good On Blizzard for doing this .. (Score -1) 252

As an avid player I fully support them doing this kind of thing as one of the many things that they can do, such as doing mass bans on hacking accounts. Cheating really does put doubt into the game at times.

And ... in the next version they need to redesign the program so that information about what the other player is doing is not sent to your computer. I know some of the MOBA's do this and thus avoid this kind of cheat in their game. It would also allow them to offer a free game. The main problem now with offering a free option on ladder at least is that everyone will use hacks without worrying whether their account will be blocked.

Comment Interesting Concept (Score 1) 212

It is actually an interesting concept. Many Libraries that I am involved with in a support role are struggling to find a place in a modern world where the majority of people have the information that they need at their finger tips. People just do not visit Libraries in the way they used to.

They are often now becoming a community service operation for the disadvantaged and often have more people using the internet than people actually borrowing books but even then the level of visitation makes it hard to justify them staying open.

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