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Comment Re:A news? (Score 2) 169

Maybe I'm mistaken, but I was under the impression that at least part of the reason Cyanogenmod exists was to make a usable Android that didn't depend on Google Play Services. Also, Cyanogen Inc. (the company commercializing Cyanogenmod) has partnered with Microsoft to promote Microsoft services instead of Google's.

Comment Re:A news? (Score 3, Insightful) 169

It's a great tool to keep people in your ecosystem. Every time a person goes out and shops for a new phone, they look at all makes and models. If you have a system that defines an upgrade path for users, where they know they'll never be left behind on an antiquated OS, they're MORE likely to upgrade, not less likely.

Third-party Android device makers don't give a shit about Google's "ecosystem." In fact, many such as Amazon and Cyanogen (Inc.) are actively hostile to it.

Comment Solution: Buy legislators. All of them. (Score 5, Interesting) 169

Captain Obvious Competition.

Yep.

These companies already have your money, so updating a device that's already been sold is a needless expense. There's also a good argument to be made that updating a device hurts future sales. If your phone isn't updated, it will start to feel old, so you're more likely to buy a new phone sooner.

Yes. I have a high-end preamp-processor, updatable over the net. Plenty of bugs. Did they ever fix them, much less add new features? No. Did they release a new model? Yes. I have a high-end camera. Updatable over the net. Plenty of bugs. Did they ever fix them, much less add new features? No. Did they release a new model? Yes. I have a high-end radio transceiver. Updatable over the net. Plenty of bugs. Did they ever fix them, much less add new features? No. Did they release a new model? Yes. And so on.

The whole "we can update your device" bit is a scam (and often, so is the "we can update your software" bit.) The only way a corporation is likely to actually update hardware responsibly is if legislation forces them to. And good luck trying to get THAT in place when corporations outright buy the decisions of the legislatures.

Submission + - Free Speech Under Attack as Facebook Plays Judge, Jury, Executioner (techomag.com)

NathanBachman writes: Freedom of speech is under attack, and the perpetrator is none other the king of social media, Facebook. In recent times, the company, now a popular face of online censorship, has been shamelessly blocking accounts, removing pages, and deleting posts that either failed to strike a chord with the moderation team, or were brutally honest to the extent of becoming intolerable for the people in position of power. Will Facebook get away with playing god and silencing millions of pro-Kashmir, pro-Kurdishs, and pro-freedom of speech voices around the globe?

Submission + - 2016 Hugo Award Winners Announced

Dave Knott writes: The recipients of the 2016 Hugo awards have been announced. Presented annually since 1955, the Hugos are (along with the Nebulas) one of science fiction's two most prestigious awards. They are voted on by members of the World Science Fiction Convention ("Worldcon"), the most recent of which, MidAmeriCon II was held this past weekend in Kansas City. Notable winners include:

Best Novel: The Fifth Season , by N.K. Jemisin
Best Novella: Binti , by Nnedi Okorafor
Best Novelette: "Folding Beijing", by Hao Jingfang, trans. Ken Liu
Best Short Story: "Cat Pictures Please", by Naomi Kritzer
Best Graphic Story: The Sandman: Overture , written by Neil Gaiman, art by J.H. Williams III
Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form: The Martian , screenplay by Drew Goddard, directed by Ridley Scott
Best Dramatic Presentation, ShortForm: Jessica Jones: "AKA Smile", written by Scott Reynolds, Melissa Rosenberg, and Jamie King, directed by Michael Rymer

As in the previous two years, the 2016 Hugos were subject to considerable controversy, as highly-politicized factions within science fiction fandom attempted to influence the awards via a concerted campaign that influenced the nomination process. Those actions once again proved unsuccessful, as the nominees put forth by these activists failed to win in any of the major awards categories.

Comment Re:No problem (Score 1) 157

Well, if you bought a phone with an unlockable bootloader, you can flash whatever OS you want on it. As I wrote elsewhere, even the original Galaxy Nexus from 2011 can get the Cyanogenmod equivalent of Android Marshmallow this way.

But the main "problem" (if you want to consider it so) with Android is that it's a FOSS platform.

No, you've got that backwards: the problem is that phone hardware should be required by law to be unlocked so that their owners can control their property.

Comment Subsidies (Score 5, Insightful) 441

LMOL yes moron Uber competes with taxi service.

Sure. Any transport method that is used instead of another is competition. Walking, bicycles, private cars, motorcycles, skateboards, Segways, busses, subways, jitneys, hansoms, taxis, limos, Uber... all competitors that reduce opportunity for the others.

Anyway, the story is that Uber's earnings will be garnished to subsidize taxis. I wonder, would people approve if their bicycles and cars and so on were taxed specifically to subsidize taxis and/or other transportation methods?

It's fascinating to see the "this business has a right to exist, workable business model or not" attitude arise in a new space, and to watch the politicians be bought and sold accordingly.

Comment Re:When it stops moving, subsidize it... (Score 0, Flamebait) 441

If we all had smart-phones 100 years ago, today's taxi regulations (and the various boards enforcing them) would not have been created. Which means, it is time for them to be abolished.

I am so with you. No more smart-phones! BURN THEM! BURN THEM ALL!

Soon, teenagers might begin speaking to one another again; dress in ways that attract the eye; undertake outdoor activities other than "find that Pokemon"; and play games that develop co-ordination of more than their hands, develop whole-body muscle-tone, maybe even ask each other for dates with, you know, actual speech and eye contact. Maybe even kiss!

Nah, never happen. Bring on the VR hoods and nerve stimulators. Soon, "my teenager's in the cloud" will be a common parent's lament, and the most common teenage problem will be bedsores. :)

Comment Interesting... (Score 3, Funny) 188

Zen's initial availability is slated for late this year, with lager-scale roll-out planned for early 2017.

You know, although a tank lager looks big from the outside, there are usually no more than a hundred or so tanks in one. So this doesn't seem like a very large rollout.

On the other hand, if one of the tanks rolled over the editor(s), that would be a service to humanity.

Comment Good ads (Score 4, Insightful) 120

Ads can be good. They can enable commerce and content. Responsible advertising contains a combination of three things: a still image, and/or text, and a link. IOW: an HREF element, and within that, an IMG element and/or perhaps (preferably) some textual content. No scripts other than what's required to actually serve the ad, no videos, no animations, no scraping of user-specific information.

Anything/everything else is abuse.

Remember when Google was all about text ads?

Google's ethics cancer took care of that. For myself, I don't see many ads any longer. The status quo is to attempt to abuse me; fine. The status quo on this end is to block ads.

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