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Comment I doubt anyone will need to sue anyone else (Score 1) 209

... I'm not from a country where suing people is a common occurrence but usually the way you fix is through the beauracracy. With a few sensible steps to shortcut the process.

You call/email/talk to people until you find someone that has any measure of power, and escalate to management as necessary.

If you have a bill that is "signed" by the manager of some collections department etc of the company (even though it would have been processed by some underling), you politely request that person's phone number and establish a one-to-one dialog, explaining calmly that it's clearly a mistake and that you expect the charges to be reversed and a full explanation of what has happened.

If you have a name of someone who is, or should be, responsible within the company, you can often infer an email address. Firstname.lastname@companyname.com or some such. If you have one person's email, you can infer another's.

Phone and-or email at least weekly. Ideally keep a polite, calm,reasonable email paper trail, copy in anyone you've talked to along the way. Don't get angry but do insist that it's clearly a mistake, that you expect someone to take responsibility and that you expect the charges to be reversed.

The biggest surprise, as with so many news stories, is that it became a news story at all. If you are a squeaky enough wheel, you basically become someone's full-time job to figure out some kind of solution.

Comment Science article: the real numbers are at the origi (Score 2) 86

The numbers are easier to understand here:http://news.mit.edu/2016/solving-network-congestion-megamimo-0823

Both Owen Hughes' ibtimes article and the summary say "triple" the speed, which. should be four times the speed.

Three times faster is technically correct, but seems asinine when allowing this kind of English should allow you to say "one time faster" for twice as fast ("my new car can go one time faster than my old car").

Comment Re:Hoax (Score 1) 212

Exactly. And for something like this if you're not sure it's a con or not, there's a nice exercise in critical thinking...

Can you imagine the monetary budget required and time / boredom involved with cops or BBC staff actually driving around doing this even with perfect technology.

It's not hard to see that it's just not that likely unless you're paranoid, buy into conspiracy theories, and have a belief in people's extreme devotion to boring, useless jobs.

Comment Aaaghhh, my eyes! (Score 1) 66

The first WTF was the disclaimer itself, but OK, if you must. Buy then, not one but two sets of weasel words?!!

"Necessarily", "in most cases". Choose one and leave it at that.

I'm not necessarily an old pregnant black Kenyan woman most of the time.

In fact, today I'm a young, white, male, New Zealander.

Comment Cherry picked data is cherry picked (Score 1) 304

...nothing to see here.

PS, if you search for "three aquatic mammals" you don't get three typical aquatic mammals either. You get a picture of a single seal or something because the text doesn't come up so much.

Because people don't take pictures and label them "3 black teenagers", for regular social photos more like: "me and my friends". The people that label photos like "three blahblah teenagers" are stock photography companies or police.

Google gave you what you searched for, it didn't anticipate your context and doesn't have a human level understanding of what a human is, let alone a black teenager.

Treat Google as a simple text and you won't be disappointed. Everything beyond that is a bonus. Google does it better than most, but...

AI, machine learning... there's some smoke and mirrors, some very impressive and valuable niche and specific applications, but does Google have the cognitive ability to hold a human-equivalent realistic model of the world?... that's the AI holy grail, we're not there yet.

Comment Optimistically... (Score 1) 103

I don't know anything about this particular project, and yes I'd guess it's plausibly snakeoil. But...

Positive thoughts, critic and cynic acknowledged upfront. The cynic and critic will say you can see how bad Google translate is by translating and reverse translating.

So let's put voice recognition capability aside and ask what if this new gadget is exactly as good/bad as Google translate?

it will still save you your free hands and a lot of time from looking things up in a phrase book or one word at a time in a dictionary.

After living three years in Japan, I've become very good at communicating in very simple English and very simple Japanese. Google translate can give you workable results for bare and not unreasonably imperfect communication. Keep your sentences very short with self-contained context. Don't expect pronouns and plurals to translate.

. Develop the skill of talking simply, and with clear gestures. If you're lucky or determined you will find others with these same skills.

. Even current technology, well applied, could be a god send if your traveling well off the beaten track. Not to translate your life's work, but for a (newbie) stranger in a strange land.

my two yen.

Comment Re: universal translator (Score 1) 103

Oops, typos, formatting.

Wow. OK, I'll feed the troll.

Firstly this person is probably your customer, or your customer's customer. So they pay your salary.

Next, are you sure they live in your country? On holiday? Visiting?

Next, do they speak only in their foreign language all day, every day? Are you sure? Do you suggest everyone becomes fluent in a language before they visit the country?

For some languages,with dedicated effort, even getting close to high-school level language will take several years on average. And guess what? The best way to learn a foreign language is to live in a foreign country.

Are you so sure you'd be happy to communicate at the level of a one year old to your family, friends, co-workers if you were in their position?

Source: I'm an English Teacher and part-time Japanese student in Japan. Please feel free to give specific examples of who does you such great injustices and I'll be happy to debunk them.

Comment Re: universal translator (Score 1) 103

Wow. OK, I'll feed the troll. Firstly this person is probably your customer, or your customer's customer. So they pay your salary. Next, are you sure they live in your country? On holiday? Visiting? Next, do they speak only in their foreign language all day, every day? Are you sure? Do you suggest everyone becomes fluent in a language before they visit the country. For some languages,with dedicated effort, even getting close to high-school level language will take several years on average. And guess what? The best way to learn a foreign language is to live in a foreign country? Are you so sure you'd be happy to communicate at the level of a one year old to your family, friends, co-workers if you were in their position. Source: I'm an English Teacher and part-time Japanese student in Japan. Please feel free to give specific examples of who does you such great injustices and I'll be happy to debunk them.

Comment Can't parse article text (Score 1) 105

Does this sentence make sense?

From both the article and the summary...

"On April 29, another 180 filed a separate lawsuit making the same claim: that Google's Apps for Education, which provided them with official university email accounts to use for school and personal communication, allowed Google until April 2014 to scan their emails without their consent for advertising purposes."

I get to "until April 2014", and my brain won't parse it. What was/wasn't promised before April 2014 and what was/wasn't delivered? Was the situation before April 2014 undesirable? Was the situation after April 2014 undesirable? Maybe it's just me, but the wording seems really unclear.

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