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Comment This is such a bad argument (Score 1) 97

Every time there's a story about OSS software being less than perfect, someone always trots this tired crap out. "Oh if it isn't want you want you can just fix it!" That is complete bullshit and you should know it. If you don't, you are hopelessly naive.

First off, most people are not programmers and many do not even have the request problem solving, analytical, and mathematical skills to become one. If you aren't a programmer, you can't just go and fix software. Becoming a programmer isn't magic either, you don't go and read a book and then you are good. It takes years of experience to get proficient, and decades to really master and is something you need to spend a lot of time on. If you think you are some hot-shit programmer and you "picked it up just by reading" and "just do it in your spare time" then guess what? You aren't near as good as you think you are.

Second, even if someone is a programmer they may not have the requisite skills or knowledge to deal with a piece of software. Not all software is created equal, not all problems are the same to solve. Someone might be a programmer who's actually pretty good, but knows about making database code because that's what they do. However if they are trying to implement an algorithm for processing audio they might be lost because they don't understand how that works, it is another set of knowledge.

Finally, even if someone does have the skills, knowledge and experience to do it, maybe they just don't want to spend the time. We all have only so much time to spend in a day, maybe they are not interested in dropping a bunch of time to fix something that is to them just a tool. They'd rather pay to have one that works and spend their time on other shit.

So knock it off with the "oh it is open just do it yourself" crap. That is extremely silly, and you know it.

Comment Re:Not all wrecks can be avoided (Score 2) 177

Conversations would be different if the uber car was at fault but not all accidents can be avoided.

There are accidents that nobody could avoid, there are accidents that I cannot avoid, and accidents that could be avoided.

Obviously self driving cars will initially have to be clever enough to only cause accidents very, very rarely, At some point when this is achieved, they will try to avoid avoidable accidents where someone else is at fault.

Comment Re:Car manufacturers (Score 1) 208

If lexmark win this then every car manufacturer will be able to create their own fuel and shut out generic petrol alternatives.

The first car maker trying that would go bankrupt within a very short time. If Ford were mad enough to build a car that I can only fill up at Ford gas stations, what sane person would buy that car?

Comment Re:Fait Acompli? (Score 1) 208

I'm not clear on patent law in this case (certainly not the US laws), but I thought patent licenses cover manufacturing, not use.

It covers use as well. Imagine someone with a _real_ patent, and some company makes a million unlicensed products and sells them cheap. Then as a buyer you can't say "I'm just using the product, I didn't produce it, I should be allowed to use it".

Obviously when you pay a patented cartridge made by Lexmark you _have_ a license to use it. And if you sell that cartridge to me then I have a license to use it, and you don't have it anymore.

Comment Re:Note to self (Score 2) 208

The catch is that it's starting to be "never buy anything" from anyone. There isn't a company on this planet that doesn't want this ability to control it's products after purchase, and they consistently get away with it.

It seems that I can get third party cartridges for my Brother laser printer quite easily. It seems that Brother doesn't try stopping others from making cartridges.

Comment Re:Fait Acompli? (Score 2) 208

Excuse me? What have they patented exactly?

It doesn't really matter. They have patented _something_ and nobody claims that patent would be invalid. They then go on to claim that because they have some patent, nobody is allowed to refill their cartridges. And that's what should fail in court.

The exception would be if they have a patent on refilling cartridges, then they can deny you the right to refill cartridges _using their patented method_, but they still can't deny you the right to refill cartridges in any other way.

Comment Re:Norton (Score 2) 76

The difference now is that many hackers have developed tools for MITM attacks on https.

Yes and the same tools work with a self-signed cert or with HTTP. To make them work with HTTPS and a signed cert, you need to have a compromised CA signing cert. This is still currently mostly limited to nation-state adversaries.

Comment Re:Norton (Score 1) 76

Step one: Any browser that cares about security MUST stop regarding https with CA certificates as any more trustworthy that self-signed certificates or plain http.

Why? Plain HTTP can be compromised by anyone on a hop between you and your destination. HTTPS with a self-signed certificate can be compromised by anyone on a hop between you and your destination, but can be detected if you do certificate pinning or certificate transparency. HTTPS with a signed cert can only be compromised with cooperation from a CA. The set of people that can compromise signed HTTPS is significantly lower than the set that can compromise self-signed HTTPS.

Comment Re:Uh.... what? (Score 2) 191

2. Collective or other shared accommodation, often combined with studies.

It's pretty common to move accommodation for each year of a degree, so this can easily be 3-4, more if you do a PhD or similar (though people often find a place for the whole of their PhD). I can remember the second and third places I lived as a student (I stayed in the same place for two years of undergrad and then for the whole of my PhD), but the first was university-owned accommodation and I don't recall the exact address - I certainly don't remember post codes for all of them.

Comment Re:"vacation" (Score 4, Insightful) 191

It's been over a decade since the US tightened the visa restrictions so that everyone wanting to come into the country as a practicing journalist must have a visa, even if they're from one of the visa-waiver countries. You can bet that if you tick that box, you're already going to come under a lot of extra scrutiny (and if you don't, but then publish anything written about your time in the USA, expect to be denied entry the next time).

Comment Re:That's stupid. (Score 2) 253

It depends on how you arrange the lights. In the UK, there's a delay in between one set of lights going red and the next going green. In a number of US cities that I've visited, one set turns green at precisely the same instant that the other turns red. This means that going through the lights as they turn red is potentially very dangerous, because you will still be crossing the intersection while cars from other directions go. Adding a small delay, larger than the grace period, would likely improve safety considerably.

The USA has 7.1 fatalities per billion km driven, whereas the UK has only 3.6. It's tempting to blame the drivers (and the difference in driving tests in the two countries lends some support to this), but the road designers have a lot to blame. The US statistics are likely even worse for in-city driving, because the totals are skewed by the fact that you can drive far further in the US without encountering another vehicle than in the UK.

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