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Submission + - Google Preventing U.S. Users from Disabling SafeSearch (

cavehobbit writes: Saw this on another site and it checks out. I was not able to turn off Google safe search. Tried an image search for a famous adult performer and got nothing more than 'R' rated images, and no obvious way to turn the filter off. Tried the same thing at BING and Yahoo, and could turn off their safe search filters, most easily at Yahoo. This is, IMHO, stupid, demeaning and paternalistic. Bye-Bye Google

Submission + - Atheist blogger sentenced to 3 years of prison for insulting Islam (

An anonymous reader writes: Egyptian blogger Alber Saber, maintainer of the Egyptian Atheists Facebook page, has been
sentenced to three years in prison under Egypt's blasphemy law for posting the trailer for the anti-Muslim film Innocence of Muslims. This film was widely blamed for al-Qaeda's coordinated attacks on US embassies on September 11 of this year, which were meant to pressure the US for the release of Omar Abdel-Rahman, who is imprisoned in the US for his role in the World Trade Center attack of 1993.


Submission + - 'Marine' Fossils May Instead Represent Early Land Dwellers (

sciencehabit writes: The fossils of various frondlike and sacklike organisms that supposedly lived at the bottom of ancient oceans may actually represent some of the earliest organisms to dwell on land. That's the controversial interpretation of a new study, which suggests that rocks long thought to have been formed from sediments deposited on ancient seafloors may actually be the remnants of early soils. If true, the finding would push back life's transition from sea to land by tens of millions of years—and possibly by 100 million years or more.

Comment Re:Since when... (Score 1) 709

Bad example.

You do have the right to yell "fire" in a crowded theater. But if you are wrong, you will be held liable.

You also do not have your right to speech preemptively oppressed by requiring a license to speak before you speak, or have your background checked or neighbors interviewed before you speak, as occurs with people purchasing firearms.

Taking "shouting fire in a theater" analogy further, it would require everyone to have a federal background check and a state license before operating a printing press, or speaking in public at all, just in case they might print or say something wrongful or injurious.

Holding people accountable for their wrongful or injurious behavior is one thing. Assuming they will engage in wrongful or injurious behavior before hand is another. I did not see screams of outrage demanding pre-licensing for speech after Al Sharpton destroyed a man over the Tawanna Brawley incident. Or the Richard Jewel story. Or Ray Donovan. Or any number of people falsely accused and maligned in the press or public in general.

Comment So if sparks from a nail gun caused it ... (Score 1, Insightful) 709

We should blame the construction industry?
Ban home remodeling?


The shooters tried to put the fire out and called 911. They acted fairly responsibly, though with some forethought they would have taken some preventative measures to prevent sparks.

Sometimes stuff happens. Using it to promote your particular social engineering agenda is bullcrap.

As another poster said, hold the shooters responsible for this. If there are not already laws in place that do so, there can be fairly quickly.

Comment Re:What a lame announcement... (Score 1) 414

Fine. What about people without Exchange?

I need to sync my personal outlook with my personal phone. I need to do it without a third party involved.
Why? Because I use my personal phone for work. I do not want my corporate information filtered through someone else server, (iOS, Android), and I do not want my personal information filtered through my employers server, (Exchange, Blackberry).

My employer would not be happy if meeting notices about the back-end system I might be working on for the major new service offering were to show up on Google servers, or anywhere else. And I sure know my employer has no business knowing what I do evenings or weekends. (my employer is a very large company in a very competitive sector)

Currently, my Symbian phone, as well as old win6.5(?) phones can synch with Outlook on my PC over Bluetooth, (also cable and infrared if I prefer). No third party server needed. They both do this without any manual intervention. As soon as I walk within range, my phone connects to my laptop and syncs directly with it, without a third party server involved*. The last I checked, iOS, Android and Win7/8 require use of a third party server, and in the case of ios and android they do not sync everything in outlook.

Why would Google, Apple and Microsoft all take away existing functionality and now require that this information be sent through a third party server? I suspect the question answers itself.

*(This is using the last version of Nokia's PC Suite, as even the replacement tools OVI and Nokia Suite have removed some of the original functionality, like one way sync)

Comment White noise hurts my ears, but rain sounds do not (Score 2) 405

I use an artificial rain storm I downloaded a few years ago from . I see they have a new version.

I use headphones in the office. They have developers mixed in with everyone else, phone reps, managers, everyone but sales staff. So it can get very noisy.

I tried white noise, pink noise and brown noise, (which they also have), but all hurt my ears after a while, when using headphones. I find the artificial rainstorm does not. I put it in a repeating loop and it takes care of suppressing office noise. this is especially effective when combined with noise cancelling headphones.

I find music too distracting, whether rock, classical or something else, like Phillip Glass, Sigur Ros, etc. People do not believe me when they ask what I am bouncing around to in my chair and I say Naqoyqatsi or Edgar Meyer. But the rainstorm does not distract and does allow me to concentrate.

Comment Outside of the code, all documentation is worthles (Score 5, Insightful) 312

I currently work for a company that has instituted an incredibly restrictive development methodology they bought from a big consulting firm. It requires multiple forms be filled out for every program written, every requirement for every program written, every request for every change to every program or application written. All of these reviewed by coworkers who are not about to alienate team members, and reviewed by lower management who want to look good to upper management by having everything go smoothly.

These documents are then stored on the LAN. To never, or rarely ever, be read again.

The one thing it does not enforce or require, is meaningful documentation in the code itself.

It doubles, or more, the time it takes to do everything. But it does nothing to stop the mistakes any better than the procedures that went before. If anything, it finds less errors, because we were not given more time to do this double or more amount of work. So time is so compressed, we do not have time to do anything other than get it working and get it in.

One thing it does do very well, is prevent problems from getting fixed. The only people that will start a change effort are those that notice a problem and are affected by it enough to have it cause them problems. Otherwise no one wants to go through the bureaucracy to kick off any sort of change effort, which leaves a lot of ticking time-bombs in the infrastructure configurations, application designs and application code.

The only place documentation is good, is if it is meaningful, and in the code, where it is readily findable and far less likely to get lost, short of some fool deleting it.

Documentation located anywhere else will be lost, or obsolete many more times than not, before you ever really need it.

If anything, documentation in code should be reviewed by people with absolutely no connection to the application it is for. If it is good enough for them to figure out an understand what is being done, and more importantly why it is being done, only then is it worth anything more than the bytes is written with in storage.

Comment Not ANOTHER lcd, please (Score 1) 109

I will continue with my current Kindle, or it's successors: e-paper, whether b/w or color. I prefer it to LCD's, and their power hungry, can't read in daylight issues. I suspect Amazon is just jumping on the bandwagon, so I do not hole out hope for anything more than a well designed LCD e-reader to compete with the NOOK LCD. What I am waiting for is color e-paper with a refresh rate fast enough for video, 60 cps or faster. Then add a flexible, wireless keyboard embedding in a cover, so I can replace my kindle, and I can replace my laptop. Maybe even flexible e-paper. The new Lenovo think tablet comes close as you can with current tech, with the optional hard portfolio case, but it still uses an LCD.

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