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Comment Why???? (Score 1) 332

What is with this urge over the last decade to make the browser an OS?

I already have an OS. It plays movies, games, and anything else I throw at it. I don't need to run a 2nd OS on top of it to replicate the functions of the original.

Maybe we can come up with something to replace the browser that runs inside our current browser and then replicate everything again. If we can replicate functions twice, why not three or more times?

Comment Re:Motto: "Don't Be Evil" (Score 2) 391

Personally, I think corporations are often evil regardless of the "direct" actions of their leaders or employees. Sometimes all it takes is for individuals to simply do their job well.

In large groups of highly specialized workers, it can be very difficult for individuals to see beyond their specific role in an organization, meaning that the problem of evil is inherent in the byzantine hierarchy itself and not in the specific actions of its individual constituents.

I'm very tired right now and I'm not sured I explained that well, but hopefully someone will understand what I mean...

Comment Re:We worship the blowhard (Score 1) 1276

Libertarianism is a leftist philosophy that suffered a schism in the early to mid 20th century, with many allying themselves with the authoritarian right (modern day conservatives) in opposition to the rise of what was perceived as the authoritarian left (socialism/communism); the old "enemy of my enemy is my friend" scenario.

This schism has warped the meaning of the word libertarian over time. These modern right-wing libertarians are now called vulgar libertarians by the more classical libertarians. They may even use the word Randroid as a pejorative to deride them for their fundamentalist devotion to Ayn Rand.

The most confusing part is that both may make similar statements but mean different things. For example, "Welfare State" might primarily refer to the government perversion of the free market in favor of the rich and powerful to a left libertarian while to an extreme right-wing libertarian it could primarily mean the government robbing workers of their hard-earned money through taxes to support lazy parasites who don't want to get a job. Both are examples of a "welfare state", but the emphasis is quite different.

So you can't necessarily assume that because someone is "libertarian" that they are inherently right wing.

Comment Re:1st A... (Score 1) 338

They're not passing a law, they're making rule of employment. You want a job with us, you don't badmouth us. That's perfectly reasonable, whether a private or public employer. If an employee doesn't like it, they can quit. It's that simple.

That depends on what the bad mouthing is about. If an employee in the private sector is bitching about working conditions and talking about forming a union on Facebook then the speech would be protected by the NLRA (National Labor Relations Act) and an employer would be subjection to federal action for terminating or punishing said employee.

Granted, the NLRA doesn't have any real teeth and most people don't file complaints, but the protection does exist.

Comment Re:Firefox + NoScript + Adblock Plus + FlashBlocke (Score 1) 223

are the problem with malware infections, it is the millions of joe sixpacks.

I disagree. It's the developers who are the problem by unnecessarily requiring said users to use insecure technologies to simply view a site that rarely has anything more than text and pictures on it.

The fact is that malware exists purely because of nerds. They either develop it directly, or they aid and abet it through the above. Joe Sixpack is nothing but a victim.

If the Internet were a car, web developers would require that air bags and seatbelts be removed in order for the car to function, they would install sharp metal spikes on the dash, and then blame the driver when he got in an accident and impaled himself.

Comment Re:Dumb Government Abuse of Power (Score 4, Interesting) 819

by doing what you should have the gawddamn right to do on your own property!

It's not your property. Here is a somewhat humorous parody that happens to illustrate the point and even addresses the topic of this thread:

"The Peasant's New Property"

        Not so many years ago lived a peasant, though he didn't think of himself as such, who thought so much of real property ownership that he spent most of his time slaving away in his cubicle at work to acquire enough money to purchase some. He had little time for friends, family, or other amusements; in fact, the only thing he thought much about was his bi-weekly paycheck. His schedule contained labor for almost every hour of the day, and as one would say of a peasant, "He is out in the fields", so one could say of him, "He is in his cubicle".

        The suburb where he desired to own property was very gay; every day many strangers from all parts of the globe arrived. One day two swindlers came to this suburb; they made everyone believe they were real estate agents and declared that they could sell the finest property one could own. Their architecture and design, they said, were not only exceptionally beautiful, but the homes and land possessed the wonderful quality of having its ownership unperceivable by any man who was irrational or unpardonably stupid.

        "That must be wonderful property," thought the peasant. "If I were to own such property I should be able to find out which of my fellow men are irrational, and I could distinguish the clever from the stupid. I must have this property without delay." And he gave a large sum of money to the swindlers, in advance, that they should set to work without any loss of time. They prepared lots of paperwork and pretended to be very hard at work. They asked for commissions and all sorts of fees which were quickly drawn from the man's bank accounts, and they appeared to work until late at night.

        "I should very much like to know how they are getting on with my purchase," thought the peasant. But he felt rather uneasy when he remembered that he who was irrational or stupid couldn't perceive its ownership. Personally, he was of the opinion that he had nothing to fear, yet he thought it advisable to send somebody else first to see how matters stood. He told everyone he knew what remarkable quality the property possessed, and all were anxious to see how bad or stupid their neighbors were.

        "I shall send my friend who is an accountant to the agents," thought the peasant. "He can judge best the ownership, for he is intelligent, and nobody understands his office better than he."

        The accountant went to the property where the swindlers sat, perused the paperwork and asked lots of questions. "Heaven preserve us!" he thought, and opened his eyes wide, "I cannot see any ownership at all," but he did not say so. Both swindlers requested him to come near, and asked him if he did not admire the exquisite deal they were offering, pointing to the paperwork on the desk. The accountant tried his very best, but he couldn't see it. "Oh dear," he thought, "can I be so stupid? I should never have thought so, and nobody must know it! Is it possible that I am irrational? No, no, I cannot say that I was unable to perceive the ownership."

        "Now, have you got nothing to say?" said one of the swindlers, while he pretended to be busily punching numbers into his calculator.

        "Oh, it is quite the deal," replied the accountant looking through his glasses. "To finally own real property! I shall tell my friend that I like the deal very much."

        "We are pleased to hear that," said the two agents, and described to him in great detail the minutiae of property ownership. The accountant listened attentively, that he might relate to his friend what they said minus his concerns.

        After a while, the peasant sent another friend to the agents who had the same exact experience as the accountant. He was unable to see any real ownership, but conveyed the same lie to his friend for fear of being seen as irrational.

        At last the peasant wished to see the paperwork himself, and finally sign the contract. With a number of friends, including the two who had already been there, he went to the two clever swindlers.

        "Is it not a great deal?" said the two friends who had been there before. "You can finally have the liberty inherent in owning your own property!"

        The peasant looked over the paperwork and came across a section the agents had thoughtfully provided that detailed the local property taxes he would have to pay. He was shocked to see that the amount was over half what he was currently paying for rent, and much like rent, had to be payed in perpetuity lest the state seize his property and evict him. He wondered how paying the state was any different than paying a landlord in such a case, but since the amount was less and not wanting to think he was irrational or unpardonably stupid kept his thoughts to himself.

        There was also a section on eminent domain stating that the state could seize his property at any time for its own use, but since that rarely happened and not wanting to think he was irrational or unpardonably stupid kept his thoughts to himself.

        In addition, there was a plethora of ordinances limiting how the property be used, including such minor details as to what plants could be grown on it and to what length and much more. It bothered him that he had little freedom to decorate or use his property how he wished, but not wanting to think he was irrational or unpardonably stupid kept his thoughts to himself.

        It was actually quite apparent that it was the state who truly owned the property, and he was merely renting it from them. Ownership was nothing but an illusion, but not wanting to think he was irrational or unpardonably stupid kept his thoughts to himself.

        All the friends he had brought with him advised him to purchase the property and announced that they would throw him a great party to celebrate once he moved in. He then signed the contracts, transferred over the funds and paid for the property in full. He was finally a property owner! Or was he?

Comment Re:This is exactly the spirit of the law (Score 4, Interesting) 240

It's completely ass backwards and results in a total thwarting of creativity.

I compiled some research recently to assess creative work ethic amongst musical artists from the 60s to the present. It had nothing to do with copyright originally, but the data can easily be arranged to show some interesting things about what effect increasing copyright lengths may or may not have on creativity.

Using album lengths of studio albums for these artists I came up with a figure I called CPY, which just stands for content per year, which is measured in minutes. For this post, I took my data and divided the artists between 2 groups: Pre 1978 & Post 1978. Jan 1, 1978 is when the 1976 Copyright Act took effect BTW.

The Pre 1978 group had an average CPY of 42.55 minutes
The Post 1978 group had an average CPY of 30.6 minutes

This is about a 28.1% reduction in creative output after the copyright act took effect. Now, correlation does not imply causation, so it can't necessarily be said that this dramatic drop was caused by the copyright act. However, it can certainly be said that the copyright act definitely is NOT causing an increase in creative output. There is no evidence of such in the data whatsoever. In fact, creative output has held close to the margin of error from the 80s onward in my data.

Comment Re:Bad Move (Score 1) 103

Does anyone here go a single day without using Google a dozen times at least?

Absolutely. I can't even use Google by accident by following a link as their entire domain and all of their subsidiary's domains that I know of are completely blocked from my network.

This has had virtually no impact whatsoever on my existence. There are plenty of replacements for everything they do.

Comment Re:Yes, and no (Score 1) 197

It's rather ironic that you have used up a lot of censorship points to attempt to bury other people's opinions through promoting those opinions you do approve of and hence burying those you don't, if not burying them directly, and then turn around and post anonymously to say people shouldn't be afraid to say unpopular things.

The fear of being modded into oblivion stifles unpopular speech on this forum, doesn't it?

Moderating is ultimately the same kind of social tyranny you say you don't want to exist in the world and yet you admit to having done lots of it...

Comment Re:What a doorknob (Score 1) 366

At the current rate, people will shy away from Google as it's becoming an omnipresence on the internet which is raising concern.

Oh, if only that were true. Only nut-jobs like me "shy away" from Google. Everyone else will use it until they can't, completely missing the point that they shouldn't be supporting it in the first place once it achieves a given mass.

The biggest threat to liberty and equality in the world is the unchecked accumulation of wealth, and the power inherent in it, in individuals and the organizations (corporations, governments, etc.) said individuals collude together to form. History has been quite clear on this. There have been no exceptions.

As such, everyone who cares at all for posterity and justice should oppose such accumulation to the best they can.

Personally, I try not to support any company that controls over 10% of its market. I haven't completely succeeded yet, but I'm getting damn close...

Comment Re:But what about the spirit? (Score 1) 400

It is not outdated. Politicians take an oath to uphold the constitution, but don't. They should be thrown in jail. There is no interpretation of it, it's very easy to read and understand.

I agree with you in "spirit" (hehe), but they aren't being thrown in jail and there is quite a lot of arguing over interpretation so something needs to be done. Maybe my answer isn't the right one, but there still needs to be one.

Comment Re:Turtles all the way down... (Score 1) 400

Well, but then we'd need to maintain a meta-meta constitution, and a meta-meta-meta constitution, ed infinium... Pretty soon you'd have Genies to grant meta-amendments, and such.

Now I like the idea even more. We can trap the politicians in such an infinite loop that they will be unable to do their jobs at all. They'll just argue about it for all eternity...

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