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Comment Re:Important milestone (Score 1) 156


stock trades as a form of gambling need to fuck right off.

the stock market is supposed to be for investing, not speculative gambling and pump-and-dump operations on the share price.

anything other than that is mere parasitism, producing nothing of value to anyone - just transferring value to some and destroying value in the process for everyone else.

Comment Re:Heads-up Texas Holdem (Score 1) 156

and yet, even with all that unfathomable and incalculable complexity, humans manage to play and win the game against other humans

An AI doesn't have to analyse the game situation perfectly, it just has to do it better than humans. and that's a hell of a lot easier than perfection.

I, for one, will be glad to see the macho bullshit associated with the idiotic practice of poker disappear - there's no pseudo-testosterone in being thrashed by a computer, or in being - at best - a second-rate poker player.

Comment Re:IoT is already here. (Score 1) 142

That's why the article's talking about 5G AND IoT - so that the average consumer has absolutely no control over how their toaster or fridge or light-bulb connects to the internet, no ability to change IP address or routes, no LAN or WiFI DHCP server to configure, and no ability to turn it off.

With a 5G modem built in to the device, it'll be always-on, always spying.

Amazon did it with Kindle & built-in 3G modem years ago, so that people could buy and download books from Amazon. They made bulk deals wherever possible to minimise the cost - and mobile data is a lot cheaper now,

Two of the inevitable outcomes from this are:

1. a series of blog posts, articles and how-tos on hardware hacking to disable the 5G modems built in to various appliances.

Manufacturers will probably retaliate with a patch to break your fridge or TV if it can't get a 5G connection.

They'll also make use of short-range wireless networking (e.g. bluetooth and similar) to look for nearby devices from the same (or allied) manufacturers. If one of them can get to the internet with their payload of spy-data then all of them can. They'll use the same wireless protocol for in-home control (remote control, home-automation hub, etc) so that consumers won't want to disable it.

2. a similar series of how-tos describing how to hack your fridge's firmware to make use of the "free" bandwidth available (as was done for the Kindle 3G).

This will probably be slightly more difficult than it would be for criminals to turn your IoT device into a spam or DDOS bot because the manufacturers will probably make some minimal incompetent effort to secure something that will cost THEM money.

Comment Re: No (Score 2, Informative) 189

> A Linux system without a bunch of proprietary software is almost unusable


> MP3 and MP4 playback come to mind

There are dozens of FOSS music and video players, capable of playing pretty much any common (and most uncommon) format. including mp3, mp4 and many others.

> Nvidia drivers.

The proprietary nvidia driver is currently much better than nouveau. for AMD cards, it's much harder to tell. radeon is better for some things, fglrx is better for others.

BTW, the nvidia driver and steam (plus some games - both native linux and with WINE) are the ONLY proprietary software I have installed on my machines, and i've been using linux as my "desktop" OS since the early 90s - switched from OS/2 to MCC Linux and never looked back.

In all that time, I've never had any need or use for any other proprietary software. Don't need it, don't want it, don't care at all about it.

and i couldn't care less about what other people choose or need to run on their computers - aside from the security risk they pose if they connect garbage software to the internet, it's none of my business.

> Especially CUDA

CUDA is almost completely irrelevant outside of a tiny niche of scientific computation, computer-science research, and other very parallelisable number-crunching jobs. I happen to do a lot of work in fields that use it, but I'm well aware that it's a very tiny niche.

> These sort of if idiot thoughts are why I moved to BSD from Linux.

yeah, because any/all of the *BSDs can run lots more proprietary software than Linux.

Your sort of idiot thoughts are why people think you're both a liar and a moron.

Comment Re:Driver's license (Score 1) 383

> Pretty much exactly the same arguments could be made for cruise control.

no, they can't. cruise control is just automated control of the accelerator and gears for long-distance highway driving - it exists to avoid repetitive strain on ankles and tendons, and requires the driver to be in full control of the vehicle at all times...even a light tap on the accelerator or brake disables it. it doesn't pretend to navigate or have any kind of situational awareness, there's not even any hint of claim to being 'self-driving'.

Comment Re:Self-driving Car 'Problem' in Bike Lanes (Score 1) 383

this is a point that very few americans ever get. they love to whinge about allegedly "absurd" court cases where people sue for what they consider to be trivial injuries.

what they never realise - or acknowledge - is that such cases are absolutely necessary with a private, grossly over-priced health system.

people don't need to sue to have their medical costs covered if they have a public health system, if an injury doesn't put them at risk of bankruptcy and homelessness.

if you ever wondered why the level of litigation is so much higher in the US than in the rest of the western world, now you know.

Comment Re:Driver's license (Score 2) 383

practically speaking, you have a choice between corporations or governments.

at the moment, due to decades of anti-government propaganda by corporations, you americans have abdicated control of your government to corporations so there's little distinction between them.

that's not inherent, though. although you have NO chance of ever influencing or controlling corporations (except through government regulation - which is why you've been bombarded with decades of corporate propaganda railing against the evils of regulation), you DO have some small chance of taking back your government and making it work for the people rather than for the corporations - artificial life forms which both run on and corrupt the legal system that enables them to exist....remember, corporations only exist as legal entities because governments say they do, and they only provide shielding from liability for shareholders because governments say they do.

vote wisely. vote socialist.

and when you succeed, remember that constant vigilance is required to ensure that governments isn't taken over by corporations again.

Comment Re:Driver's license (Score 1) 383

This so-called "backup driver" is merely a passenger.

As for the identities of the the legal drivers of their self-driving cars, that can only be Uber's CEO & senior management team, and all members of the board. They're the ones who made the decision, they bear the responsibility.

How long will their scofflaw attitude last when it's them personally at risk of being charged with vehicular homicide rather than some underpaid peon?

Comment Re:Public Folders (Score 1) 158

> but there are thousands and thousands of forum links that will literally break over night

so, no significant change to standard behaviour then?

web forums suck, always have and always will. even if you find what you're looking for after wading through pages 1-73 (of 160) of bullshit, stupid questions & comments from cretins, and really fucking irritating animated avatars (the worst of which end up in my block list, either individually or if i'm lucky there'll be a consistent url prefix to turn into a blocking pattern), the download link to whatever it was you were after will almost invariably be broken.

to make it worse, most web forums default to disabling search unless you register an account with them. they can fuck right off.

and if by some chance you find a link and it actually still works, then just like most of the broken links, it will be to one of those shitty file + malware/spyware services that spam you with ads and requests to register/pay for an account, require you to run who-the-fuck-knows-what javascript and add countdown timers to delay each individual download....just to make it more irritating to encourage you to register and pay for an account. they can fuck right off too, i'm not paying or registering with anyone that goes out of their way to annoy me.

> and would need the authors to go back and edit said links to point to the new storage locations.

which never happens. even if the authors cared about it and wanted to (they typically don't), they probably can't even find the posts themselves to update the links.

Comment Re:You get what you pay for (Score 1) 158

not quite correct.

to use the modern eternal-september internet, i have to be aware that various entities will attempt to do all those things (spying, spamming, malware, etc) but I am under no obligation to allow them.

I don't have to accept their cookies or local storage, or run their javascript, or download/display their banner ads.

I can and will take whatever steps required (mostly as simple as installing ublock origin and umatrix, sometimes requires writing little CSS or js overrides with stylish or greasemonkey) to avoid the evil shit and bypass attempts to prevent me from avoiding evil shit (anti-adblock crap is easy to work around, for example)

Comment Re:That sounds good to me (Score 1) 158

it might be easy and convenient for the person who uploads the files, but it's a massive pain in the arse for everyone downloading them.

downloading a shared file from dropbox requires you to enable scripts from half a dozen different domains (i use umatrix because it gives much better, more fine-grained control over permissions than noscript. also it works in both chromium and firefox) and then dropbox constantly nags you on every fucking download to register with their service and give them your personal details.

and if you're downloading multiple files, you have to click and download each one individually with a tedious and laborious manual click-through-several-pages process. you can't just get a page with a bunch of href links on it a bulk downloader plugin (or a bash+wget or curl script) can use.

because it's a fucking great idea to replace basic web functionality like href links with javascript-based spyware.

Comment entirely predictable (Score 1) 158

you can't trust cloud service providers, especially cloud storage providers. at all.

if you want to host something - files, web sites, whatever - host it yourself. it's not hard.

even if you don't have a reliable internet connection at your office or home, a VPS is cheap (but make sure you backup everything on it regularly, at least nightly, to another machine on a different network so that you can host it elsewhere if you ever need to - you can't trust hosting providers either, but at least you have direct access to all the files and configuration details).

Comment Re:Anything that breaks scrolling (Score 1) 309

agree on every point.

btw, i found your comment by searching for "smooth" to see if anyone else had mentioned the annoyance of crappy javascript implementing its own smooth-scrolling. I turn that off in every browser because it shits me, I don't want it turned on again - but slower and more cpu intensive and even more annoying - because of some shitty javascript library for wanky designers

Fortunately, this crap is only common on sites that don't display anything at all without javascript enabled (an almost sure sign of a page I don't want to read, so can be closed immediately without regret)

Comment crowdfund my exit strategy (Score 1) 193

I'd like to make a product just annoying and threatening enough to the dominant player in a field that I can sell it to them for a few hundred million.

To do that, I need your support. Please fund my project - if I go through normal (regulated) investment channels, I'll have to share the proceeds with my investors and I don't want to do crowdfunding is perfect.

Backer rewards include branding "sucker" on the forehead with a hot iron for $1000.

Thanks. You have my undying gratitude, loyalty, and respect.

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