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Comment Re:Obnoxious (Score 1) 160

Think of it more as currently in the shape of a data warehouse (which it really is). Most data feeds into data warehouses aren't that great - they need to be massaged into something useful and Google are finding out over time what the problems are.

If you can't find something in a database, it significantly decreases the usefulness of having all the materials there in the first place.

That's true but not to the point where you'd consider not making any of it available until it was perfect (or most of the way there). It's not perfect and it probably never will be - given time as they find more systemic problems in their metadata feeds and address them things will get better. They may be at 90% but for most people it's going to be good enough as it's more than likely going to be used like a library browsing sections for interesting things.

Comment Re:Obnoxious (Score 1) 160

It's like saying that Slashdot is obnoxious because it is "written with a smug sense of self-entitlement as though he and other 'geeks' are the only legitimate users of the Internet".

They're really not the same. Personally I'd mod someone down for saying that someone didn't have the right to use the internet (if I had mod points). My problem mainly rested with the (smug and it's all about "me") tone of the comments inlined into the google response to him.


Submission + - scientology proposes net censorship in Australia (hreoc.gov.au)

An anonymous reader writes: Submitted by the Australian branch of Scientology to the local Human Rights Commission is a proposal to eliminate anonymity on the net and the removal of critical websites. Submission is listed as #1931 at http://www.hreoc.gov.au/frb/frb_submissions.html SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATIONS Recommendation 1: The implementation of Criminal and Civil Restrictions on Religious Vilification. Recommendation 2: Restriction on Anonymity on acts of Religious Vilification: 2.1 Websites created with primary purpose of inciting religious vilification shall be removed or their access to the Australian public restricted. 2.2 Creators of websites whose primary purpose is the incitement of religious vilification shall be prevented from concealing their identity. Recommendation 3: Restriction on Religious Misinformation and Misrepresentation known or reasonably known to be untruthful in the Media Recommendation 4: Include a form of Bill or Charter of Rights into the Australian Constitution, which prevents the Commonwealth from making any law, which 'directly, indirectly or incidentally' prohibits the free exercise of religion to the extent of such prohibition

Comment Re:Seriously, guys... (Score 1) 348

And don't get me started on the Aussies, who would probably say some crap like ...

I don't think anyone here would say anything like that here. It doesn't make sense to contract April Fools in any way. And now to go completely off topic onto underpants.

Someone will know what you mean if you said underpants or underwear in Australia but pants would be what it is the USA. More likely we'd call underpants undies (pronounced like dundee (without the d but with a trailing s as in that really bad movie with Crocodile in the title)). Women however can wear panties as well as undies. Of course, if they're white undies depending on your age you might call them bog catchas (named for the brown streak that can sometimes be seen).

As a general rule we're more likely to contract a word (sometimes) and stick an o or some kind of e ending on it (sometimes even an a). Examples like arvo (afternoon), undies (underwear/underpants) and sanga (sandwitch).

Comment Re:Sesame Street & the Importance of Bilingual (Score 1) 1077

I think you meant Frisian not Finnish. English is a Germanic language whose most direct influence was Frisian, since then it's absorbed a lot of other influences. Finnish has completely different origins further back in history.

For a good read about the history of English try to find "The Adventure of English" by Melvyn Bragg (ISBN 0-340-82991-5). It's a surprising interesting and informative book. It's also been turned into a television series for those who are reading challenged (the book is more in depth). It also covers the many dialects of English now in use (including American, Australian, Singlish and others).

Comment Re:I don't see how a PS3 price cut is "long overdu (Score 1) 232

It's not the number of console's that important in terms of saying who is winning, it's the attach rate that determines profitability (especially for 3rd party games developers) as that's where the money is made. The higher the attach rate the more you can afford to make a loss on the console and make it up in income from software sales.

There's an article here from last year with attach rates listed: http://playstation.joystiq.com/2008/04/25/npd-releases-home-console-attach-rate-ratios-ps3-not-so-hot/

The 360 has a significantly higher attach rate. I'll let you do the math to work out the number of games sold

Unfortunately I do believe attach rates include bundled games.

Comment Re:Not according to Kaz Hirai (Score 1) 232

His statement isn't necessarily true or false (and might be both). Your assertions are however misleading.

Performance has shades of grey and can be subjective. The cell processor is potentially must faster (note the potentially) if the SPEs are used to good effect. With 3 symmetric cores on the 360 vs the cell processors single full core if someone doesn't put in the extra effort (for a smaller market) the PS3 version of a game will lag behind the 360 version.

Performance isn't always about the speed of the bare metal it's also about what you do with it. There are games where the PS3 version is well optimised and performs better (especially in first party titles) however there a lots of games where the opposite is true.

It's disingenuous to say that a first party PS3 title can't run well on an 360, it's a first party title so it will never be available on a 360. You can't make comparisons by hand waving and saying something isn't fast enough to handle something when it's never going to be available on that platform. Next you know we'll have someone saying that the PS3 isn't good enough to run Halo 3 (never mind the fact that it can't run it as it's never going to be available for it).

Disclaimer: I own both consoles - I do prefer the 360 gameplay over the PS3 however.

Comment Re:Slashdot, then and now (Score 1) 78

This is a massive cultural shift.

Exactly, this whole issue probably should have stopped being a legal issue a fair while ago. It should now be a social issue.

I have no idea what should be done but rightly or wrongly when a sizable percentage of the population of a country is engaged in something that is (most likely) illegal it becomes a social issue. Prohibition doesn't work unless most of society accepts it.

In all likelyhood there will have to be reform of the way copyrights are licensed so it's possible to have blanket licensing without the myriad of bodies responsible for collecting fees for different things in different countries. This isn't a situation where the market can solve things as there is no competition allowed when it comes to copyright (excluding things like CC licensing).

I don't think copyright owners, collection societies etc want this seen as a social issue however as that means government intervention and actions being taken they won't have too much say in.


Company Makes Paper Out Of Wombat Poo 71

Creative Paper attracted worldwide interest for its paper made of kangaroo droppings in 2005. Well it's been four years and the best and brightest at Creative Paper haven't been sitting on their laurels. What's their great new idea? They have now launched a kind of paper made from wombat poo. Scat-obsessed Darren Simpson from Creative Paper says the paper is green or gold depending on the time of year the droppings are harvested. The wombat paper will be unveiled at an international paper conference in Burnie, Australia later this month.

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