Well, you start by realizing that owning lethal weapons is not a human right.
Next, you either amend the constitution or clarify the interpretation of the existing amendment to make it possible to get better control over who gets to own such weapons.
And on a much higher level, work to reduce the "need" for people to own guns. When everyone can live happy without weapons no one will be interested in owning them.
I don't really see home-made guns as a big problem. In fact, we all have hundreds of items in our homes that could be combined to form lethal devices. Strangely enough, most of us don't...
So is a home-made gun legal? Maybe in the US, but not in the more civilized parts of the world. It certainly wouldn't be legal for me without a proper license.
What is interesting in this case is that making it easy to create your own gun is likely to work against the motives of Defense Distributed and force the US to adopt more gun control. Maybe even looking at how other countries solve this problem.
From the article:
“The other 94 percent of the samples don't represent what our customers encounter. When we explicitly looked for these files, we could not find them on our customers' machines.”
Or in other words: "Thank you for installing the software necessary to allow us to browse through the contents of your computer when we feel like it and report any interesting findings back to us..."
All in good faith, of course.
Speaking as a non-american I think you are asking the wrong question.
There is little doubt that there would be no dramatic improvement to the quality of life for the average american person if you switched today. However, the lives of all future Americans will certainly be improved if they learn the same system the rest of the world uses.
From a societal perspective, you are unlikely to ever find a "golden moment" when it would make both short-term and long-term economic sense to make the switch, but since the long-term benefit is definitely there this is something you should consider a necessary investment and get it over with.
If I was American, I'd start asking myself what the long-term costs of NOT switching to metric are, and how clinging to the old ways serve myself and my country in the new global economy.
My impression is that the US health care system has been doing this for as long as it has existed. Having digital records should be a great help to the insurance companies to make it easier to track down fraudulent health care providers.
Since I live in Sweden I don't usually have a problem with health care bills, but once during a vacation to the US I had to visit a hospital due to severe stomach pain. Four hours and a trip through the CT machine later I was released with a prescription for some pills. Six months later (back home in Sweden) a bill for $14000 arrives...
When I brought this to my insurance company and explained that the examination I went through couldn't possibly have cost that much they just shrugged and said "yeah, they always try this when dealing with foreign insurance companies". A few weeks later they had everything settled at just under $3000.
So what's the point of this story? If a system is open to exploitation you need someone to monitor it. Monitoring is easier with good records of what's been going on.
One of the best ways to go about this is to use the same approach as Stockholm, where we've had "ultra-fast" 1Gbps broadband for quite a few years now.
The city has founded and funded a city owned company with the sole purpose of putting fiber in the ground to every part of the city. The company then allows any ISP to rent space in the fiber, ensuring fair competion in the internet connectivity marketplace. Since the company has easier access to city decision makers whenever they need to dig up a street it is possible to coordinate the work and put more cable in the ground at a faster pace.
Since the company gets good revenue from the ISPs the city only had to use taxpayer money for the initial part of the network and has now regained that investment.
Everyone wins and the internet gets better!
Another interesting aspect in this whole IPRED mess is the amount of time the other ISPs save their IP-address data.
According to the IPRED law it is up to the lower court to order an ISP to turn over the subscriber information, but only after examining the evidence of possible copyright infringement.
This means that if the data is saved for a shorter period than the time it normally takes to investigate an infringement, any order to turn over the data would also eventually fail.
I've heard from at least one ISP that they normally save data for three weeks, so that should be sufficient, unless the courts suddenly decide to start prioritizing these cases.
Yes, we will be going to OSI, Mars, and Pluto, but not necessarily in that order. -- Jeffrey Honig