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Comment Re:Going back on their word (Score 1) 197

I feel sad for people not on my server. Emerald Dream is an RP-PVP server (RolePlay+PVP) and world PVP is tremendous here. Our server is busy and balanced and there are several guilds, from behemoth PVP-only ones to colossal RP+PVP ones, to RP-friendly ones to small boutique dwarf-only or troll-only ones. The RP informs and invigorates our PVP and I and dozens of friends of mine would not be playing if it weren't for this server.

Comment As an Indian lawyer who reads erotica (Score 1) 257

... my opinion is that this development is just to score political points, or, more accurately, to pre-empt your (right wing) political opponents from scoring political points. Technically, it's illegal to watch, read, store, sell, purchase, write or distribute porn, just as its illegal to urinate in the open in urban areas. But reality has little to do with the availability of porn or the practical freedom of all Indians to piss and shit wherever they feel like. Indian censorship of Internet porn sites such as this one has little to do with a government of a billion+ people feeling they have to protect the population from the reality of sex. It has a lot to do with not allowing the right wing to score easy political points and with the fact that there's no organised and public body of people calling for citizens' right to read and watch porn. Also, before you jump at it, no, reading porn is not protected under free speech laws in India.

At any rate, all I need to do is buy a cheap $4.75/mo VPS package and run a socks 5 proxy on it. Or be lazy and buy a $9 vpn service to get around it, if I could GAF. literotica.com isn't moving.

Comment My grandmom uses Ubuntu... (Score 1) 374

... and she likes it. She's 83 years old. And everything works just fine. Just freakin fine. Wireless, sound, DVD burner. I've been evangelising Linux since 1997 and by god, Ubuntu is getting a lot of shit absolutely freaking perfect. And in the past 2 years, several of my non-tech friends are using it without any problems whatsoever.


The First Photograph of a Human 138

wiredog writes "The Atlantic has a brief piece on what is likely to be the first photograph (a daguerreotype) showing a human. From the article: 'In September, Krulwich posted a set of daguerreotypes taken by Charles Fontayne and William Porter in Cincinnati 162 years ago, on September 24, 1848. Krulwich was celebrating the work of the George Eastman House in association with the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County. Using visible-light microscopy, the George Eastman House scanned several plates depicting the Cincinnati Waterfront so that scholars could zoom in and study the never-before-seen details.'"

Comment In densely populated countries like India, (Score 1) 344

say what you want, as loud as you want it (within reason) wherever you want*, for as long as you want. Everyone else in the world is too busy living their lives to care.

*it's considered quite polite by those you sit next to when you tell the caller, 'I'm in a movie, I can't talk now." if your phone rings in the theatre.

Comment It's fascinating that Americans (Score 2, Insightful) 324

Who supposedly support the free and lubricated market when it comes to the free movement of capital across the globe can be so protectionist when it comes to labour. By the tenets of capitalism, a Bangladeshi man should be able to move to New Jersey without let or hindrance and put X plumbers and handymen out of business. How come the proponents of capitalism can consider with glee another country's protected industries and financial markets falling to the inexorable march while at the same time, oddly, not sharing the glee of, say, a Sri Lankan chicken farmer at the thought of selling Americans chicken for 0.50$ / lb, retail?

Capitalist? Ha

Comment Re:As an Indian citizen (Score 3, Informative) 141

Well, there's no right to privacy explicitly defined but the 4th amendment and court decisions have, read together, promoted the right of individual citizens to keep their data private from the state. secondly, there exist robust laws limiting data access and retention, which dont exist in india at all. I erred in saying explicitly that the right to privacy was guaranteed under the us constitution, but my meaning, that it is strongly upheld in the US still stands.

Comment Re:As an Indian citizen (Score 2, Informative) 141

Bhagwad, you're wrong. I am in fact a lawyer and while Kharak Singh did mention the right to privacy in 1963, that right has scarcely been upheld or even enforced subsequently. Particularly in this day and age where, for example, ALL people renting houses in metros and ALL domestic servants in metros have to register themselves, their lease deeds and particulars with the state, the right to privacy as it is understood in the US is nonexistent here. Your links to your own blog notwithstanding.

Comment Re:As an Indian citizen (Score 5, Interesting) 141

One point to note here is that unlike the US, democracy works in India in the sense that there is a true multi-party system and a plethora of actual contenders from power, from the far left (Communist Party of India - Marxist) to the far right (Shiv Sena) (Army of Shiva) and the people have demonstrated that they are perfectly willing to consign parties to oblivion permanently if they don't serve public interests.

Comment As an Indian citizen (Score 5, Interesting) 141

Makes sense to point out here 2 crucial differences between the US and India.
In India, there's no Right to Privacy as strongly guaranteed under the US Constitution. Secondly, there is a strongly articulated bundle of rights called the "Right to Life". This includes the right to food, education, access to free / subsidised health services etc. In India, there are massive government programmes for the provision of basic services (food, shelter, education, irrigation, water, electricity, transport etc) to citizens.

In this context, the people, rather than being wary of the state and treating it like an enemy as is the case in the US actually want the state to help them. If you were to provide an Indian farmer with irrigation, access to primary healthcare facilities, water, sanitation, education and drought/flood relief, most would gladly fork over their private details.

Of course, modern states are brutal and the information collected will no doubt be used to casually repress people and tighten the state's hold on them. However, the integrity of your DNA fingerprint is of little consequence if you've committed suicide because of mounting debts.


Indian Census To Collect Fingerprints, Photos 141

adityamalik writes "The Indian census kicks off on Thursday, with approximately 2.5 million people charged with conducting it across the billion-plus strong country. 'Officials will collect fingerprints and photograph every resident for the first time for the register — a process described by Home Minister P. Chidambaram as 'the biggest exercise... since humankind came into existence.' Sensitivity towards collection of biometrics and personal details is quite low in India currently. I wonder how effective — and how powerful — the exercise will turn out to be for the country. I'm also struggling to imagine how the photo and fingerprint collection is going to happen, technology-wise."
Classic Games (Games)

The Unsung Heroes of PC Gaming History 325

An anonymous reader writes "The history of PC gaming is littered with many well-known and highly regarded titles, but what about the titles you mightn't have heard of? This list of the top games in the history of the PC includes the usual suspects, such as Half-Life and Doom, but also some often overlooked PC games including such classics as Elite, the space trading RPG developed in 1984 by two college friends from Cambridge for the Acorn and BB Micro systems. The game used a truly elegant programming hack to create over 200 different worlds to explore while using 32kb of memory, all with 3D wireframes. Also in the list is Robot War, which required players to actually code the participants, and one of the first online multiplayer RPGs, Neverwinter Nights, which introduced many of the developer and user behaviors, such as custom guilds, that have made modern RPGs so popular." What's your favorite classic game that always gets overlooked in these kinds of lists? My vote goes for Star Control 2.

Using Infrared Cameras To Find Tastiness of Beef 108

JoshuaInNippon writes "Might we one day be able to use our cell phone cameras to pick out the best piece of meat on display at the market? Some Japanese researchers seem to hope so. A team of scientists is using infrared camera technology to try and determine the tastiest slices of high-grade Japanese beef. The researchers believe that the levels of Oleic acid found within the beef strongly affect the beef's tenderness, smell, and overall taste. The infrared camera can be tuned to pick out the Oleic acid levels through a whole slab, a process that would be impossible to do with the human eye. While the accuracy is still relatively low — a taste test this month resulted in only 60% of participants preferring beef that was believed to have had a higher level of Oleic acid — the researchers hope to fine tune the process for market testing by next year."

Comment It's all culture-specific, really. (Score 1) 585

coming from an Indian context, it's considered not rude in the least to answer your cellphone when you're in a restaurant even with friends or family. No restaurants here have rules against cellphones... it's just considered quite ordinary that someone may want to talk to someone else who's not there in the restaurant. In movie theatres, if you speak on your cellphone for a long time you'll get shushed but messaging is considered quite acceptable. I think it's a function of the fact that people live very social lives here and that by western standards, any part of even small towns would contain crowds of people.

There's very little privacy/solitude, relatively speaking, so an intrusion of a cellphone in the normal hubbub of daily life is not a significant addition.

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