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Comment Re:It was about time... (Score 2, Interesting) 89

"On the other hand, the reason online sites are always looking for new ways to insert advertising in the user experience is because, although they might make enough to be profitable, they still aren't raking in "buy your own country" money."

Google is.

And this makes me wonder what the disconnect is. Since it's correct that Network television has much higher costs than any website, and yet in many cases has fewer advertising eyes than major websites. (Especially when you consider tivo and people wandering off to get a coffee in ad breaks)

Which leads me to consider that TV advertising is probably vastly over inflated, and overrated, and that web advertising -- should someone take the time to do it in a contextual, non-invasive and entertaining way -- it vastly undervalued and underrated.

I suspect the advertising industry itself is really to blame for its own shortsightedness. It really should be possible, and easy for anyone with a reasonably successful website to hook up with advertisers with ease and fear of annoying their site visitors, and transforming their website into a flashing, flickering spawn of hell.

But as long as the industry is trusting flawed rankings like Nielsen and Alexa, there won't be much change.

This change needs to happen - urgently. By making this happen, it will help end piracy and the ridiculous cartel that is the music industry and film distribution. Content can be set free.

Comment If he'd used an iPhone... (Score 1) 439

3. The term âoeintercepting deviceâ means any device or apparatus which is capable of transmitting, receiving, amplifying, or recording a wire or oral communication other than a hearing aid or similar device which is being used to correct subnormal hearing to normal and other than any telephone or telegraph instrument, equipment, facility, or a component thereof, (a) furnished to a subscriber or user by a communications common carrier in the ordinary course of its business under its tariff and being used by the subscriber or user in the ordinary course of its business; or (b) being used by a communications common carrier in the ordinary course of its business.

Interesting. Looks like if he'd used the record app on his iPhone, subsection 3a would have applied, and he would not have been using an intercepting device...

Comment Re:Linux audio (Score 1) 374

If by "Flavor of the month" you mean "flavor of the last 5 years" I might agree. OSS was marked deprecated in the kernel tree when 2.6.0 came out. Luckily, ALSA--which has been the audio implementation that has been standard since then--supports OSS emulation. That way old OSS apps still have working sound.

The fact that it is 2009 and there are still audio issues on Linux is telling, however.

The problem isn't with Linux, it's with old, unsupported applications taking exclusive control of the sound card (Teamspeak, I'm looking at you.) This new feature should help fix that problem while still maintaining backward compatibility.

Comment Re:So, the way I read this is ... (Score 2, Informative) 153

I suspect that they had adequate probable cause in that these guys had already been convicted last year of conspiracy to murder. If you ask me, this trial was a huge waste of public money to prove that these people really were terrorists (well, duh... conspiracy to murder isn't terrorism? WTF?).

What's worse, it seems to have been only thinly reported that another 3 people they were trying to convict (who were acquitted on a hung jury last year) were actually acquitted again. This should be seen as a scandalous waste of resources which could have been spent bringing other cases to trial earlier in my opinion.

Comment Re:Nuclear Pulse Propulsion (Score 1) 452

I worked on an evolved version of this idea called Mini-MagOrion. The "mini" refers to using very small (initially non-critical) charges, removing the hot-button issue of carrying nukes to orbit. The "mag" refers to using a magnetic confinement field to capture the blast and direct it, instead of the pusher-plate in the original proposal. The "orion" was the name of the original proposal (Project Orion). There's a (small) wikipedia entry on it:

As always, the devil is in the details. While the concept is definitely doable, there are many operational (and social) problems with this. For example, taking out every Earth satellite with the EMPs. Also, the performance is not quite as spectacular as you mentioned, it's still good enough to transport 100 tons to Mars within 3 months, or to Jupiter in about one year though.

Comment Re:Yes at Carnegie Mellon (Score 1) 835

Even better: it's not quite done, but classes have already started and faculty have moved in. There's still construction going on in some areas, unpainted areas, unfurnished classrooms, etc.

A recent patch fixed the ~60 degree AC in some rooms. There's still a strange bug that causes the fire alarms to go off all the time.

I'm still waiting for SP1.

Comment Call me an asshole (Score 2, Funny) 427

But I have fond memories of the exploit called Win Nuke to cause the BSOD. Back in the day, I was a freshman in college and a football player on our floor was continuously giving me a hard time. In those days, we telnetted into the DEC Alpha to check our email. Also, in those days our IPs were statically assigned and we had no firewall. Those were quite obviously better, more trusting days of the internet. Anyhow, one day I waited until I knew he was in his room and checking email from his computer. I used finger on UNIX to get his IP address. Then, nuke away! I could here him banging, cussing, and throwing his stuff around. So, whenever I needed a little fun, I simply delivered that little exploit. One day he came back from a drunken binge and went to check his email and I felt it was a perfect time to test his patience level. After carefully delivering the little packet, I heard a smashing sound. My guess is he decided to do a body slam, WWF style, on his PC. As I walked by I casually asked what happened as I saw the computer smashed to smithereens. He told me to, "Get outta here, shit nugget!" It was all I could do to keep from bursting out laughing. Moral: Leave the IT guy alone.

Comment Re:Contractual vs. Piracy (Score 1) 276

Sony would fight this in court as something that fell under a contract not as Copyright infringment. That is what I'm getting at. Which would then modify what the penalties would / could possibly be. If it's found to be a true Copyright infringement that is equivalent to that of an individual person pirating digital media, then the same laws should apply. I believe that Sony will use their full legal force to argue the case as a contractual issue not a copyright issue.

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