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Comment Who is modding (Score 0) 815

Who is modding up these stupid comments, masquerading as tolerant acceptance of other people's politics? It is not, as these mods would suggest, open-minded and intelligent to accept the TEA Party movement as a valid political movement. It is not, and anyone who has looked at it knows that it is a movement that rejects science and rational thought in favor of nationalistic provincialism. That an otherwise intelligent person can identify himself with a movement that rejects climate change--to take just one example--is amazing. It is no more close minded to reject the TEA Party than it was to reject the rise of fascism in Europe. This is not hyperbole. A close look at the TEA Party finds amazing similarities to every other fascist movement in modern history.

Comment Join Us (Score 1) 961

I have been part of the Occupy Wall Street protest. Tonight there was a public assembly where Cornel West spoke followed by a citizens' soapbox. The movement is organizing and trying to define itself. There are currently a couple hundred people in the park, and there are police everywhere. The atmosphere is incredibly upbeat and friendly--there are young people, there are lawyers, there are doctors, there are concerned citizens of all races, ethnicities, and sexual preferences out supporting this movement. We are not going away. This is the start of a movement. If you are in New York please come out and join us.

The movement is not perfect, but it is something. People = power. Now is a time for action. It is time for us to take our country back!

Comment Re:What if light travels at slightly less than c? (Score 1) 412

Well, I don't have a degree in physics, but I've read some books by the intellectually dreamy pop-physics icons Brian Greene, Neil Degrasse Tyson, and Michio Kaku, so I guess I have better qualifications than you.

Following the logic of the above scholars, I predict that c is not less than 0.03% faster than light, but that we have now discovered how to travel back in time! I have lots of other untestable theories about this discovery and am appalled that I haven't heard more predictions about all the amazing implications this discovery is going to have for humans in the future!

Comment Re:Good, but not far enough (Score 1) 299

I agree with you and think your post is honest and rational, except in your assertion that the definition of minimal government has been distorted in an attempt to make a straw man of those who are rational endorsers of "minimal government." The distortion--and I do agree that there is a distortion--has been made by the political actors who have claimed for themselves the title of being proponents of "minimal government." The government grew under Reagan as it did under Bush; what changed was the appropriation and allocation of tax dollars to favor private enterprise, and away from programs that assisted lower-income people and minorities. They distorted and confused the meaning of "minimal" by separating their words from their deeds. The other side just sat back, spineless and watched it happen.

The tea party are obviously lunatics, but they're right when they proclaim their outrage at the traditional GOP for being as fiscally irresponsible as the democrats. The problem is the movement doesn't offer any real answers--and certainly isn't pushing for "minimal government," as you defined it. God only knows what they want, but if they get their way, we'll end up with some sort of corporate tyranny. They accepted the PR of the conservatives they'd previously elected who then squandered their money. They have become so disillusioned at how the candidates who promised minimal government spent all their money away. They don't understand that those candidates never believed in their own rhetoric and had no intention of ever implementing reasonable government programs, because their candidates were bought off by corporations. And now as a result there is such skepticism in government that we can't even get people to accept that some government is vital to protect our individual pursuit of "life, liberty, and happiness."

Comment Re:"unlawful" (Score 2) 299

Before Andrew Jackson went into full ethnic-cleansing mode, he reasoned one way to deal with the native-American problem was to allow them to stay on their land but tell them they had to abide by state law. Obviously, this was impossible as the native way of life did not conform to US law. This gave him an ability to make the argument for removing the natives by force because he could claim that he was doing it because they were not following the law.

These things happen in small steps. We're being treated like idiots, and it's not long before we're going to hear arguments like, "We would love to keep the Internet open and free, but no one using the Internet is following the law, so we--the ISP--have to control it to stop people from violating the law."

Comment Re:Good, but not far enough (Score 3, Insightful) 299

He probably cares very little about the fact that the government created the infrastructure of the Internet. People like him don't really believe in minimal government (as they love to claim); they believe in a very strong, robust government--but one that works only in favor of private business. We of course see this in the financial industry, where at the top, losses are socialized and gains are privatized--with no real effort to end the "to big to fail" policy. These people are not capitalist, they are Marxists, but they're on the other side. They consistently LOVE government when it funds and protects private business, but hate it when it asks for anything back--like, oh say, protection of its citizens.

At least government is accountable to the people in functioning democracies. Corporations are tyrannical in nature, owing no accountability to the public. We've seen what happens to unregulated industries. "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to fulfill it."

Comment Re:Good, but not far enough (Score 2) 299

Unfortunately, yes. But we are going to lose this battle if the conversation becomes about "government control" and not about freedom to communicate. Power structures all over the world fear the Internet as it is now--and they should. It is not in the interest of power structures to allow the public to communicate freely, and as a result they will eventually try to do away with it.

Comment Good, but not far enough (Score 5, Interesting) 299

This is better than nothing, but it's only a matter of time before some of the "ambiguity" in the rules are exploited. What scares me most about net neutrality is that virtually no one outside of those who are actively interested know anything about it, and we've already seen a crazy propaganda campaign in the press to define net neutrality as a "government takeover of the Internet."

If we have any desire for true net neutrality to be upheld, we have to figure out a way to reframe this discussion in the media--and we have to do it quickly or we're going to soon end up with an Internet that is going to resemble broadcast TV more than the open web of information that it is now. I have a bad feeling in my stomach about how net neutrality is going to play out as it seems almost no one understands how vitally important it is.

Comment Re:Conceptual, if not legal difference (Score 1) 271

I mostly agree with you.

The point I was trying to make is that a conceptual difference exists between the amalgamation of a curated selection of technologies in the creation of something that gives new meaning to those individual technologies and is greater than the sum of its parts and blatantly just copying without any new contribution or inspiration. Apple rarely if ever has truly invented a technology--but consumers don't care. What they have done--brilliantly--is figured out how to frame existing technologies in ways that drastically improve them, and make them appear to be inevitable when they weren't before. What consistently has set Apple apart is their aesthetic sensibilities. Good design appears inevitable, almost natural--but it so rarely is. You can try your best to point to what made the iPod, iPhone, or iPad great products, but you'll fail. It's the entire experience of the product, the new gestalt they each created that has made them triumph over their existing rivals--not the individual technologies they comprise. This, like it or not, is artistry and it's not an illusion or something created by marketers. The products are works of passion, and Apple is really one of the very few BIG companies in the world that has consistently demonstrated an ability to have faith in their own vision, which we all should applaud. There is so much poorly designed crap in our world created only to enrich some MBA CEO who has no care outside of his own bank account. Say what you will about Apple, but it's hard to deny their passion and artistry. Here on Slashdot, everyone sees the trees and misses the forest.

I'm in no way justifying Apple's suits against Samsung or defending Apple against the suits it faces. The law is often black and whit when it comes to copyright law.

Comment Re:Conceptual, if not legal difference (Score 1) 271

Was not aware that the LG Prada supported multi-touch gestures, inertial scrolling, visual voicemail, and an intuitive touch UI. Why can't we give credit to a company that really does reimagine products? Yeah, Apple is big and there are other great companies out there, but there's a reason why the iPhone changed the smart-phone game, and there is a reason the iPad changed the tablet game (hey remember slashdot laughing at both of these innovations?). Before the iPad, tablets tried to run PC-style OSes, and they NEVER sold. But I guess you're going to say that there were tablets before the iPad? Yeah, but they were awful and didn't sell for a reason.

Comment Conceptual, if not legal difference (Score 1, Insightful) 271

I don't want to sound like an Apple fanboy, but it has to be said that there is at least a conceptual, if not legal, difference between the suits Apple is filling against Samsung and the suits Samsung is filing against Apple. There was no smart phone that looked or acted like the iPhone when it came to market. None. There were indeed phones that provided similar functionalities to what the iPhone eventually offered and made mainstream--but there was no smart phone that was even CLOSE in operation and design to what the iPhone introduced. Now, EVERY smart phone on the market looks and operates like an iPhone. This is not innovation, this is duplication. It's as if other companies--seeing the amazing success of the iPhone-- assumed that Apple's vision of the phone was the future and then they've hopelessly tried to copy it. The iPhone was not a new class of product, like the invention of the automobile was; it was merely Apple's take on what a phone should look and feel like, but other companies have assumed that multitouch OSes, app stores, and accelerometers define what a smart phone is and not just how one company (Apple) interpreted it. This is the difference between bad artists copying and good artists stealing. Sure the iPhone stole heavily from things that were on the market, but it then took those things and made them feel new. So I don't know if there's a legal difference here (probably not), but there is a conceptual difference. Wish Samsung would figure out a way to redefine the smart phone (maybe no touchscreen!) that was unique to its brand, instead of offering what looks to average people like iOS knockoffs.

Submission + - Blame the network or the iPhone? (

fingers1122 writes: Here where I live, in New York City, it seems common knowledge that the iPhone constantly drops calls. I've often heard people remark that the only problem with the iPhone is AT&T. But the New York Times has an interesting article today that seems to place most of the blame on the phone itself.

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