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Comment Re:Think it through. (Score 3, Insightful) 262

Okay, I usually don't respond to the posts that are flagrantly insulting, but I'm going to make an effort here to respond in kind. Bear with me.

You idiot, they didn't "release information about a gay Saudi", they published more than half a million Saudi diplomatic cables which contained, among many many other things, the fact that this one guy had been arrested for homosexuality. Wikileaks is not a revenge site, where people like you go to post the private information of a girlfriend who dumped you when she found you had skidmarks larger than your dick. Wikileaks is a place where whistle blowers go to publish some of the secrets that very large organizations, mainly governments, hide from those people whom these secrets effect.

It is true that smarter people than you have criticized this approach to journalism, and those people may have a point: huge amounts of documents like this can not be censored for potentially harmful or embarrassing personal information prior to their release. Even if they could be, Wikileaks might not be willing to do so - they have built their reputation on total transparency, with the understanding that only when you receive a whole document, without redaction, can you be certain of its contents. Much as Hillary Clinton has received a lot of criticism for self-censoring emails from her server, so does Wikileaks avoid that criticism by censoring nothing.

(Now would be a good time to pause for a moment and make sure that your drool is not getting on your keyboard while you read this. Consider a bib.)

But, as I said, there are people who are not idiots who have pointed out problems with this approach. Most of those criticisms have taken the form of the TFA: when the US diplomatic cables were released there was much hand-wringing about all the lives that they would cost when sources were revealed. That didn't happen, but it was the same argument then as now: such a huge number of documents are bound to include a few embarrassing or possibly even dangerous tidbits about individuals. Some of those people went on to make the same implied argument as in TFA, "If we don't keep secrets, someone might get hurt." though previously they were less stupid about it than trying to suggest that if someone found out that a man had been arrested for homosexuality he might be... arrested for homosexuality. I don't know about Saudi Arabia specifically, but in most places arrest records are public information. (Was this written by someone you know? They seem to be writing at your level.)

Regarding my opinion about all of this: I'm uncertain about what's best for the public good, but if Wikileaks maintains an unflinching absolutism it's bound to get them in trouble eventually. I don't think that the TFA's method of cherry-picking a tiny tidbit out of a huge stack of information and shouting, "Look how much damage Wikileaks is doing!" is acting in the public's favor though. In fact, I think that sort of misinformation is very much against the best interests of the public.

I might further make a distinction between private information, personal records, and secrets, but any kind of subtlety like that would be lost on you, I'm sure. So I'm going to stop there.

Comment Re:Think it through. (Score 1) 262

Yeah, this really seems like they're stretching for something to criticize Wikileaks over. Or, maybe more accurately: they're looking for something to criticize Wikileaks' methods over. This stuff feels like they're trying to promote the position that having secrets is good, rather than trying to discredit Wikileaks specifically.
Mars

NanoRacks Plans To Turn Used Rocket Fuel Tanks Into Space Habitats (ieee.org) 114

An anonymous reader writes from a report via IEEE Spectrum: A couple of weeks ago NASA announced it has committed $65 million to six companies over the course of two years for the purpose of developing and testing deep-space habitats that could be used for future missions to Mars. One of the six companies, called NanoRacks, is attempting to take empty fuel tanks from the upper stages of rockets and turn them into space habitats on-orbit. IEEE Spectrum reports: "A rocket like the the Atlas V, which can deliver payloads of nearly 19,000 kg to low Earth orbit, consists of three primary pieces: on the bottom, you've got the first stage booster, which consists of a huge engine and some big tanks holding kerosene fuel and oxidizer. Above that, there's the second stage, which consists of one or two smaller engines, a big tank for storing liquid hydrogen fuel, and a smaller tank for oxidizer. The payload, which is what all of the fuss is about, sits on top. The first stage launches the rocket off of the pad and continues firing for about four minutes. Meanwhile, the second stage fires up its own engine (or engines) to boost the payload the rest of the way into orbit. On the Atlas V, the second stage is called Centaur. Once Centaur gets its payload where it needs to go, it separates, and then suicides down into Earth's atmosphere. Getting a payload into space is so expensive because you have to build up this huge and complicated rocket, with engines and guidance systems and fuel tanks and stuff, and then you basically use it for like 15 minutes and throw it all away. But what about the second stage? You've got a whole bunch of hardware that made it to orbit, and when getting stuff to orbit costs something like $2,500 per kilogram, you then tell it to go it burn itself up in the atmosphere, because otherwise it's just useless space junk." NanoRacks thinks this is wasteful, so they want to turn these tanks into deep space habitats. IEEE notes that the hydrogen fuel tank on a Centaur upper stage has a diameter of over 4 meters, and an interior volume of 54 cubic meters, while the inflatable BEAM module that arrived at the ISS earlier this year has an interior volume of 16 cubic meters. For more details, IEEE Spectrum spoke with Jeff Manber, CEO of NanoRacks, and Mike Johnson, NanoRacks' Chief Designer. You can read their responses here.

Comment Re:Oops. (Score 1) 103

HW Statistics is only part of what Unity collects. There was a question about this in the Unity forums at one point (now missing...) and a Unity rep said specifically that the only way to avoid collecting data on end users was to use an older version of Unity. They didn't specify how old, but the person had asked about 4.7.2 and the rep said something like, "Definitely older than that."

I wish I could find that post, but they've shuffled around the forums and I guess it was in one of the ones that they removed.

Comment Re:Oops. (Score 1) 103

You're certainly correct, but I find this case to be particularly egregious for the reason that it steps in-between the developer and the customer. And yes, you might point out again that everyone wants to be a middle man as well, from Apple to Google to Valve, that direct producer-customer relationship has been eaten away at. Everyone wants a piece of what other people are making.

It feels like a new thing though, another step that hasn't yet been taken, when even the tools that I use to make a thing are claiming a stake in the product, and dictating to me what my relationship with my customers will be.

Comment Re:Oops. (Score 4, Informative) 103

Ugh, I'm blowing mods to post this but it has to be known more broadly: Unity is already spyware and has been for a while. Analytics is integrated into the editor, and while it used to be opt-out ever since Unity 5.0 it's been impossible for free users to disable. (Pro users still? have that option) Additionally, any games that you make with Unity also spy on your customers, even if you don't include Unity analytics or Unity ads. Naturally, if you do include those things your games will collect even more information, and Unity will graciously share some of that information with you, but it's not possible to make a spyware-free game with Unity.

In that respect, this seems like a savvy pairing between companies.

Comment Re:Nintendo are only keeping up appearances. (Score 1) 138

Nintendo is under no obligation to shut down fan projects. Someone started a rumor at one point that companies act like dicks all the time then they lose all protection under the law - this is not the case. However, in this instance I don't see that Nintendo is doing anything wrong. Making a fan game is all well and good, but soliciting donations for it is a giant breech of conduct.

Comment Re:I've suspected this for a while now (Score 0) 263

The idea of being stuck in a MS walled garden may sound bad to you (it does to me) but I love the idea of its existence. With viable competition, developers may look around and build for for multiple gardens instead of just doing a Steam release and thinking that's enough. And some of them, a few, are going to look around and say, "Bah, that's too much trouble." and do the the one release which works everywhere - DRM free.

Yeah, maybe I'm being overly optimistic. I'm not expecting most of the big publishers to give up their much-beloved software activation, but there have been more and more DRM-free releases over time and any move away from a single Steam monopoly can only help that trend.

Comment How does this contradict officials? (Score 2) 180

The revelation appears to contradict officials' previous assurances that despite the emerald hue, which first appeared Tuesday, the waters were safe.

How does this work? You don't want tons of algae growing in your pool, but there's nothing particularly dangerous about it. It reduces the ability of chlorine to sanitize the water, which still doesn't make the pools "unsafe", and since they reportedly dumped in a bunch of extra chlorine anyway (that's what was irritating the athletes' eyes)... Again, how does this contradict the officials' previous statements?

I'm not a pool expert, maybe there's something I don't know here, but you can't just throw in a sentence like that and offer nothing to back it up. I even checked the article and everything (going above and beyond here) - nada.

Comment Re:Free Speech Must Be Stopped!!! (Score 1) 465

"their words are taking away my freedom, so they must be muzzled" are likely to be, by co-incidence, those who identify as left.

This is just false, everyone makes the freedom argument for every single issue. "What, they're teaching science in schools? This impinges on my freedom of religion, they must be muzzled." Etc. It's one of those rules: when people talk about politics it is inevitable that, giving enough time, all parties will make the claim that their position is necessary for supporting freedom and spreading democracy and stopping terrorists and stopping child pornography and promoting small government and it's what the founders really intended anyway, isn't it?

I'm not following the rest of what you're saying here. I made the claim that someone who does not support free speech is less far to the left than someone who does.... So what? The left doesn't have a tone. The only thing which defines the left is an anti-establishment drive. Does that qualify as a tone? There's no unity of purpose in that.

Comment Re:Free Speech Must Be Stopped!!! (Score 1) 465

This is really a good point. The left is anti-establishment, by definition, and free speech exists in order to enable the challenge of established norms. The idea that "the left" would be opposed to free speech is antithetical.

The grandparent's claim that the left has started to "view free speech as being a bad thing" is false for the obvious reason that these people are, at most, a small subset of the left. But it's further challenged by the notion that opposing free speech necessarily means that you are not as far left as you would otherwise be.

To answer the grandparent's implied question of, "How can someone who otherwise identifies with left-leaning issues oppose free speech?" the answer is probably that speech can also be used to stifle dissent and that these people have double-thought themselves into believing the notion that it's possible to censor just that speech, while retaining all of the important freedom that good, useful, anti-establishment speech requires.

It seems silly that they would believe this, but if they get insulted a lot and they say something like, "Hey, stop insulting me." and the other person says, "Nuh uh, free speech!" then they might start thinking negative things about free speech. Anyone from the US who's reading this has probably experienced someone doing something really asinine and, when challenged on it, had them barf out the response of, "It's a free country!" and gone right on being an ass. Same deal.

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