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Comment Re:"No image of a thumbprint is ever stored" (Score 1) 355

If I read the article correctly, the thumbprint isn't being used as a password of sorts, but rather the only method of identification at all. Therefore even a single false positive within the school is a major problem as the system would have no way of telling between the two students whose hashes are identical. Thus the hash must be specific enough for false positives to be highly unlikely within any given school's population across all schools using the system.

Comment Re:"No image of a thumbprint is ever stored" (Score 2, Interesting) 355

Not that I'm against this use of thumbprinting, but I wonder how effective the mathematical template is at maintaining privacy. Theoretically even if they don't have the actual thumbprint on file, could they not still check a thumbprint they find somewhere against their student database by running it through the same template and seeing if it matches the result of any of the students' prints? They may not have the students' thumbprints themselves to compare against, but they still effectively have a hash from it. This would prevent them from producing the student's thumbprint from their hash and using it elsewhere, but not from finding a thumbprint somewhere in the school and comparing it to their database if they desired.

Comment Re:please be broad-minded (Score 1) 211

I wonder about that last bit. The main reason the last election gained the conservatives seats seemed to be the fact that Canadians were pissed off that their opposition called an expensive and pointless re-election. If the Conservatives force a re-election in the process of trying to pass a bill that Canadians can't stand, the resulting election immediately thereafter might cost them seats.

Comment Re:Why it will win eventually (Score 1) 211

This is what I worry about; it feels like only a matter of time. The only seeming way out of this is to have a law enacted that ensures consumers' rights are truly fully protected; but then, that seems like a nearly impossible goal to achieve.

A general lack of understanding about copyright law among people in general really doesn't help the issue. Here's hoping we can both stave it off a bit longer and find a real solution.

Comment Re:Cool - how about html? (Score 1) 348

Actually, ePub files use XHTML and CSS. They already have the ability to plug in a DRM layer (with no specific standard demanding a certain sort at this time) and include text reflowing and resizing (while keeping images at the same size up to as large as the screen in question allows). They also track page numbers based on the original book's page size. So effectively, it's probably the implementation you're asking for.

Comment Re:PDF? (Score 1) 348

PDFs are great on computers and some devices, but don't always work as well on eBook readers. Other formats such as ePub have better capacity to reflow and resize text while keeping images at a single size; reflowing text on an eBook reader often causes errors in PDF files. It depends on the reader in question of course, but if we're looking for an industry standard, it should be as widely compatible as possible, and ePub would fit the bill better than PDF for that.

Comment Re:ePub (Score 5, Informative) 348

ePub is a really good choice. Aside from the fact that it's an open standard, it has the option to plug in any DRM the publisher wants to use/write for it. Hopefully they eventually learn better, but since for now they won't settle for anything that doesn't include a DRM option, that's an advantage for it. It's specifically designed for reading books on an eBook reader, including keeping track of where the pages actually change (when reading at different zoom levels). I'm honestly a bit surprised the industry isn't already switching to it.

That said, I'm not fond of the Adobe Digital Editions DRM that it tends to come packed with at the moment on DRM'd books. The required software is not very good quality. The eReader style DRM is at least a lot easier to work with. (Of course, DRM-free remains the ultimate goal; at this point I pretty much only buy DRM-free eBooks anyway.)

Comment Re:Odd choice (Score 1) 256

Another choice that might be better geared to students is the Entourage eDGe. If memory serves it was created with students, especially in science fields, in mind. It has one ePaper screen and one tablet-esque LCD screen, and apparently it's received decent reviews from students, though I have no personal experience therewith.

Recent article
Official site

Excerpt from article:

The enTourage eDGe is the first device to merge an e-paper and LCD screen to create a dual-screen device that combines the functionality of an e-reader, tablet netbook, notepad and audio/video recorder and player in one inclusive device. These two displays work together to allow students to access and enrich information in a way that they previously couldn’t. Students can access their textbooks and make notes in the margins or highlight text while they simultaneously look up further information on the subject via the Web on the LCD side.
The two screens of the enTourage eDGe interact so that users can open hyperlinks that are included in an e-book text and view the content on the LCD screen, or ‘attach’ Web pages to passages in an e-book to be referenced at a later point. Additionally, as the enTourage eDGe uses E-Ink technology for easy digital reading, images will appear in gray-scale on the e-paper side of the device; however, users can load these in color on the LCD side, ideal for viewing colored charts and graphs from course materials. A built-in camera and microphone captures audio and video content that users can store and play back later. Included Documents To Go software makes Microsoft Office documents available for creating, viewing and editing for notes or school papers. The enTourage eDGe runs on the Google Android operating system and backs up all content on enTourage Systems’ servers for safe keeping. The device folds a full 360 degrees and orients its displays horizontally or vertically, to view as a book, single screen, or prop up laptop style.


Submission + - Quantum teleportation achieved over 16 km ( 1

Laxori666 writes: Scientists in China have succeeded in teleporting information between photons further than ever before. They transported quantum information over a free space distance of 16 km (10 miles), much further than the few hundred meters previously achieved, which brings us closer to transmitting information over long distances without the need for a traditional signal.

Comment How will other states react? (Score 4, Interesting) 895

Setting aside questions about Texas itself for the moment, I wonder if this will cause other states to go to greater lengths to separate their curriculum from Texas's. The curriculum change got a lot of opposition in Texas, and I can only imagine it would get a far greater amount in many of the other states, especially the more liberal ones.

Comment Re:think logically (Score 1) 288

Agreed wholeheartedly. There are things that I want to keep private; those things do not go on the Internet. There are things I don't mind companies knowing. eBay knows my name and address and for a while I had a credit card on file with them (I still do with PayPal). Similarly, I don't particularly mind Google knowing what I search for... any more than I mind the local bakery knowing what goods I like. Nobody complains about a bakery keeping track of sales (Hmm, the elderly seem to like xxx while kids like yyy. Let's sell xxx on Sunday afternoons, and yyy weekday after school hours!) but Google keeping track of search records (People who search xxx often are looking for yyy. Let's use yyy ads on sites that match xxx keywords.) is seen as evil. (And yes, I'm aware that's an oversimplification, but I think the point still rings true.)

I guess you can call it selling my privacy if you want, but I don't know that it's really my privacy if it isn't something I particularly wanted or needed to keep private in the first place.

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