Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! No Flash necessary and runs on all devices. ×

Comment Re:Gotta love brutal honesty. (Score 1) 398

Exactly right. If we applied the same "but it's got to be safe" hand waving that we do today to historical ventures, we'd still be sitting in Europe wondering about crossing the ocean in sail powered craft and dreaming of flying craft - and the regulations we'd have to slap on them.

I'm of the opinion that we never should have climbed down from the trees in the first place.

Comment Re:Fools (Score 1) 192

I'm waiting to see a self driving car navigate across Boston during a nor'easter while avoiding all the road cones and lawn chairs strewn around the street. Not to mention navigating around plows, traffic cops, potholes, double-parked cars, dealing with disabled street lights, no visible road markings, pedestrians walking down the middle of the street due to inaccessible sidewalks, and the occasional parade of wild turkeys. All of which I've seen on my daily commute.

It's nice that someone is finally running a test in a location with weather. So far it seems like most of these vehicles are just designed for puttering around southern California or the Nevada desert.

Comment Re:Why (Score 1) 128

I see a lot of posts about "why".

Well the reason is that if the US doesn't give up control, countries have been threatening with building their own internet infrastructure to run in parallel.

If these countries (Brazil, Russia, etc) did create a "second internet", then Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc, would all be shut off from their customers in those regions.

I get all of that, but why does that make it a good idea to then cede control of ICANN to an international body and give countries such as China an official role in internet governance globally? Right now these authoritarian regimes are limited to just fucking up their own national networks, why give them the opportunity to fuck things up globally?

Granted things are never going to go back to "the good old days" of the mid 90's in terms of laissez faire internet self-governance, but I've yet to see a convincing explanation of how this move will mitigate anti-freedom policies or the fracturing of the internet into national islands. There are going to be countries that give the finger to the international community and erect national information barriers no matter what we do.

Comment Re:Why the hurry? (Score 1) 128

These are domain names. It's like the Yellow Pages of the Internet. How does "censoring" a domain name prevent a particular form of expression?

How many IP addresses for how many services do you suppose the average internet user has committed to memory? I would hazard that number is 0. When a service is delisted from DNS, it might as well not exist for most people. While technically removing a DNS entry is like being delisted in the yellow pages in that the server still exists and can be accessed by those who know its address, practically a name-less server is more like a radio station that has been taken off the air. Or more precisely, it's as if the government had the ability to magically remove 108fm from everyone's radio dial: the station might be broadcasting, but it's impossible for 99.9% of the population to tune in anymore because they don't know how to build a radio.

Comment Re:Laws should be changed... (Score 1) 241

If a company has a legit takedown notice for 10,000 items, 5 of which are wrong, it is really fair to fine them $750,000 despite having an accuracy rate of 99.95%? If it were 90% (which it probably is) then it is a problem.

Yes. When dealing in large numbers, it's more important to limit the rate of unintentional harm, not less. For example, a cure that has a fatal side effect 0.05% of the time might be acceptable if the disease was very rare and only administered to 10 people a year, but it would be totally unacceptable in a vaccine that was administered to 100,000.

For the large company, $750k is a drop in the bucket, but for one of those 5 people, you may have seriously harmed their livelihood. If the copyright violation is serious enough to issue a take down, I don't think it's unreasonable to ask that them to spend $10-30 in intern or paralegal time to verify the claim is legit instead of feeding everything through a script with no human verification.

Comment Re:Who gives a flying f*ck (Score 1) 208

I've got gmail, Feedly, a couple of /. tabs, and my Youtube subscriptions open right now. CPU usage is hovering between 0.02% and 0.8%. Occasionally it spikes all the way up to 2.5% -- I assume this is when either Feedly or Gmail auto-refreshes in the background. I've seen FF shit the bed before, and it definitely has some problems, but just having a few static tabs open shouldn't be tanking your CPU.

Comment Re:No Problem Here (Score 1) 75

... If that is "ok to do" than pretty much all the DOJ need do is find some banana republic somewhere to hire some work out to and basically anything they do on the Internet is suddenly above and beyond the reach of law.

Yeah, if only there were a banana republic conveniently located 300 miles or so offshore with a military base or something where the US government could operate extrajudicially...

Comment Re: Comes and goes (Score 2) 376

Also, there should be an option for folder windows to all run in separate processes from each other and not just from the taskbar and every attempt should be made to let the user decide what folder views to restore afte r a crash.

The ability to separate explorer windows into individual processes has been around at least since 2000. It's been slightly buried in the latest version, but you can find it under View/Options/Change Folder and Search Options, View Tab, under "Advanced Settings", check "Launch folder windows in a separate process"

Comment Re:How to make a defense under 17 USC 117 (Score 1) 158

And if you buy the Game Pak and a Kazzo or Retrode dumper, you have a defense under 17 USC 117(a)(1) (or foreign counterparts) if someone does sue you, so long as you can afford a lawyer and don't distribute the dumps.

Actually, no. That defense doesn't work because you're format-shifting. More specifically, you're going from a format that doesn't have copyright to one that does - you are not allowed to dump ROMs, period, without a legitimate developmental reason.

It's a funny thing, but a mask programmed ROM is actually not copyrighted. It's Mask-protected (it's a M in a circle, similar to how copyright is C in a circle). Mask works have higher protections, and even though you can easily dump it, the conversion from physical to software is actually completely illegal.

That may have been true at one time, but as far as I can tell, Mask Protection in the US only extends to 10 years, so any original NES ROMs have long since fallen out of protection. The underlying software encoded in the ROM is still protected by copyright, and the game franchises that they represent are still trademarked, so anyone reproducing ROMs commercially would still be in hot water. However, at this point I think you would be within your rights to dump to ROMs in order to back up your software.

Comment Re:Fingerprint might not work (Score 3, Insightful) 233

Destruction of evidence is a crime (current political figures aside) which will get you sent to jail.

May I suggest that it's a stupid idea to knowingly destroy evidence if you are the subject of a criminal investigation (or a civil lawsuit for that matter)? Now I guess if you know you are guilty, it might be worth the risk to you, but in general it's going to be a bad idea..

But you are under no obligation to indicate which finger correctly unlocks the phone. As long as you comply with the court order "place index finger on fingerprint sensor", you don't have to tell them that doing so will erase the phone.

Slashdot Top Deals

A successful [software] tool is one that was used to do something undreamed of by its author. -- S. C. Johnson