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Comment Re:There had to be a first case... (Score 1) 329

What do you think self-driving cabs are? That's right: public transportation. The kind that actually drops you off where you need to be, which sounds like a pretty awesome fix. Not that self driving cars will fully replace subways or trains, but they may very well replace buses and trams with minibuses acting as large, shared taxis.

Comment Re:There had to be a first case... (Score 4, Insightful) 329

Agreed. If the car is mostly driving itself, the driver's attention will soon wander. That seems more dangerous than having the driver do all or most of the work (still having cruise control). We will have self driving cars one day, but at the current state of the art it seems more prudent to let the autopilot keep an eye on the driver rather than the other way around.

Comment Re:compete? (Score 1) 90

So it's meh competing with bleh. Which pretty much sums up my experience in cinemas in the past few years. There's been plenty of good "good" movies, but very few enjoyable simple minded blockbusters. I hope these three titles are not examples of the caliber of movies we can look forward to the next few years.

That new Independence Day movie any good?

Comment Re:I can see how this might be useful... (Score 1) 147

If anything, the presence of our Navy (Dutch) is encouraging them. No shots are fired, pirates are arrested and shipped to the Netherlands where they are convicted, after which they can apply for asylum. Beats crossing the Mediterranean in a leaky boat and paying thousands for the privilege.

Comment Re:That's amazing! (Score 2) 140

If you're organizing groups, do respect the privacy of those whom you invite as well, and consider other options or provide an alternative. The group membership roll alone is potentially very interesting information to FaceBooks "valued partners". And forcing people to sign up for FB in order to join is just plain wrong.

FaceBook is trying that crap on a large scale with its single sign-on feature. Luckily I have not come across many sites yet that actually use the feature, let alone have it as the only means to sign up.

Comment Re:I can see how this might be useful... (Score 1) 147

Commonly that's not seen as a good way. In such situation, the use of deadly force is deemed acceptable in defence of the crew IIRC (and even then often not used, for fear of escalation). But if there is no crew... This is a bit like setting booby traps in your home to nail burglars: if the trap actuall injures or kills the burglar, you're off to jail according to the law in a good many countries.

Comment Re:This is what we want (Score 1) 111

doing financial audits, do pharmacy audits, checking for overdue records, checking to see if you are overdue for an appointment, checking the status of an insurance claim (twenty times a day), counting the number of diabetics, counting the number of people who need tetanus shots.

You shouldn't have to access my personal medical records for that, I'm not talking about generic hospital administration stuff. In fact over here you're not even allowed to access medical records for any of those reasons, the best you get is anonymized aggregated data. Hospitals do keep a lot of additional data in order to keep their books in order, but even so that information is still classed extremely sensitive, and they're not about to open up that data to other parties like insurance companies (though insurers have pushed for wider access to that data as well).

Comment Re:Don't Panic (Score 3, Interesting) 532

Exactly what they're saying in Brussels; they are bent on "digging fire corridors" as they call it: make the most dire economic consequences a reality, in order to make an example out of Britain. Thankfully a few national European leaders have already objected and said that the Brexit is to be conducted in an orderly fashion and on friendly terms. Which makes sense: isolating Britain is going to hurt the EU as well, in a big way.

Comment Re:Don't Panic (Score 1) 532

Maybe the "financial disaster" comes from the fact that this Brexit put a giant turd in their double Dutch sandwich or whatever it's called. Some of the tax avoidance schemes are based on tax-free transfers to Cyprus and/or the Netherlands, and when the UK leaves the EU, that will no longer be free.

Comment Re: SOP for using ATMs nowadays (Score 5, Interesting) 181

I just take a close look at the receptacle and especially the keyboard. I keep one hand on the keyboard (touching multiple keys) and cover it with my other hand, then enter the PIN blind. Good against camera's, but not against a fake keyboard. Another measure that a lot of machines here have implemented is to ingest the card in a very jittery manner, making it (almost) impossible for a skimmer to properly read the mag strip. And people still get skimmed: some skimmers took to breaking into shops in order to tamper with or replace the payment terminals.

Most banks here now issue cards with chips that cannot be skimmed. So skimmers came up with a new trick: they install a camera or keyboard to get your PIN, then stick something in the card receptacle in order to trap your card in there. Once you get fed up and leave, they'll retrieve it and now have your chip & PIN.

Comment Re:This is what we want (Score 2) 111

I'm not against electronic medical records, though I do see the potential security issues. But it's not hackers I am most worried about, it's medical staff with legitimate access, who have no business nosing around my records but do so anyway. It happens a lot more than you'd think, not too long ago there was a big stink here about policemen going through all manner of records they had no business peeking into. Bored cops reading up on celebrities, or checking records on their ex or recent date. And in case of medical data there is a solution for that: any time someone pulls my data, I am notified (by email or whatever): who requested my data, what is their function and who is their employer, and what is their stated purpose of the request. Exactly this kind of audit trail was proposed for our new centralised medical records database, and guess who opposed it? That's right: the medical insurance companies (who should not get access to any of that data unless by explicit permission)

Comment Re: Rationale aside... (Score 5, Insightful) 1588

Europe??

In the EU, the EU or its collections of institutions is often referred to as "Europe".

And yes, they are written in legal language, laws usually are, and yes they are treaties because that is what laws between countries are.

Treaties are written in legalese, and they have to, as they deal with details. Constitutions on the other hand deal with base principles, ideals, and ground rules, and they can and usually are written in short and extremely accessible language. In case of Europe (I'll just keep calling it that), the treaties would need to follow from the constitution.

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