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Comment Re:It is only DRM+ (Score 1) 356

I agree with your sentiment on the additional burden of "new property".

I have trouble keeping material things from getting stolen or deteriorated, why on Earth would I want more of the same? This is crazy.

Just a few weeks ago I got my car scratched by some bastard who did not even leave a note. I have to go the hassle of repainting it now. Why would I want the same problems applied to data that can be easily replicated? So that some corporation gets to rake in higher profits? No, thanks.

And, yes, I know, I could have paid more for car insurance covering accidental damage. But this just goes to prove my point. Digital stuff should not be turned into property. It would be a huge step backwards.

Comment Re:It is only DRM+ (Score 1) 356

If the original designer could copy anything, why would he need to be paid?

I see the opposite... designers going out of their way so other people could use their designs for free... would not that be the biggest dream of an artist? For his works to be enjoyed by as many people as possible?

Comment Re:Sauce for the goose. (Score 5, Informative) 106

Way to paint Microsoft as the victim here.

According to GrokLaw, this is what happened:

Whether or not the patent should have been granted is not the issue at this point. It was.
The plaintiff (i4i) had a successful add-on for MS Word that it was selling. In 2003, Microsoft added the same functionality to Word. Microsoft then refused all attempts on i4i's part to license the functionality.
The license fees requested were on the order of $25M. It was Microsoft's repeated refusal to negotiate that resulted in not only a large award, but punitive damages as well.
They (Microsoft) were found liable for willful infringement, so yes, they did steal the patented method.

The weird thing here is that this is actually a case of a patent working the way that patents are supposed to work:

Company A comes up with a reasonably unique and functional solution to a broad problem, patents it and starts selling it. They take it to mega-corp B who has a problem that can be easily solved with company A's product, and mega-corp B -- rather than negotiate with company A, simply steals their design, and incorporates it into their product in the expectation that this will be sufficient to run company A into the ground before any litigation can come to fruition.

The thing to note here, is that I4I's patent isn't just for an idea, it's actually for a real product and an apparently graceful solution to what had previously been an intractible problem.

The XML implementation is simply a specific implementation of their patent, but -- once you have XML -- it's not the only XML solution or even (for many people) the best XML solution.

It is starting to look like they didn't patent the general idea of adding meta-data to a file. They patented a specific way of organizing that meta-data to produce a specific result.

In the broader context of software patents being a bad idea, I would be inclined to classify this as an example of 'good case, bad law'. It is somewhat gratifying to see software patents put to a good use, for once.

Comment Re:You have to be pretty nerdy (Score 1) 359

That's exactly the reason I would not touch anything but Gentoo and maybe LSB-based distros. I has such a hard time installing asterisk on a ubuntu machine it's not funny. No matter what I did, I could not get it to start at boot properly. It would start, but wouldn't work. Go figure. Had to add a cron job to start it, which did the trick.

And don't get me started on server-side distros. Compare installation of Horde+IMP on Gentoo and on CentOS.

on Gentoo: emerge horde; emerge horde-imp; edit a few config files in /var/www//htdocs/horde/config
on CentOS: about 20 manual steps (check it here

Comment Re:I'd rather pay a small fee.. (Score 1) 294

You hit the nail on the head. Since corps took control of radio stations, commercial music went downhill really fast. They did the same to the programming industry recently. It reached a point where hobby works are better quality than enterprise stuff.

Corporations are the anti-Midas. Everything they touch turns to crap.

Comment Re:I'd rather pay a small fee.. (Score 1) 294

Exactly. The problem of the news industry is twofold: greed and sloth.

Since greed is promoted as a virtue in capitalism, I will leave that alone.

However, when the industry becomes so complacent that most of the professional journalism is full of mindless parroting of press releases, the problem is aggravated.

Nobody will pay for the current shoddy journalism. Press releases can be had for free elsewhere. Until the industry learns to provide a compelling, insightful analysis, people will not buy this mindless stuff.

And when you fail, please do not go crying to daddy 'the govt' saying the world is going to miss your public service if you die. We won't miss you.

Comment Re:I'd rather pay a small fee.. (Score 1) 294

There is a certain limit to how much content can be supported by subscription fees, after that subscription fees become increasingly unattractive in order to keep up the same revenue stream and after that subscription fees alone won't bring in enough revenue to keep some businesses afloat.

There. Something to think about.

Comment Re:Fuck Apple too... (Score 1) 640

I do not know why you think hitting a problem is only bad in Linux. Let me give you an example.

A co-worker of mine has been complaining about word opening documents very slowly after she's been upgraded to office 2007. Some documents opened fine, others took MINUTES to load( a 27kb document, at that). It was driving her nuts.

Guess what. Updating the chipset driver fixed the problem.

How in the whole world would a normal person know that? It took me days of checking for dead network printers, viruses, removing crapware, cleaning the registry, to finally try and upgrade the driver.

Example two: Out of our 30 or so computers in the office, two consistently refused to apply policies after we moved them to the domain. The reason: although the boxes were fairly new, the hardware guys loaded them with old drivers for the network card. As a result, the network started MUCH LATER than the group policy was applied, hence the domain controller could not be found during policy ran at startup.

Windows just isn't made for the common man. I don't know if it ever will be.

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