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Comment Re:Great! (Score 0) 266

B does not solve the problem. Analyzing the video stream for the do-not-film IR signal is non-trivial; it will require CPU cycles (thus, energy) to do this, and that means that this "feature" will make your battery last not as long as it otherwise would when you are using your camera. This is a real shame, because the actual solution to the problem is people not taking their cameras into the movie theater, or those Yonder things... see https://www.washingtonpost.com... . Now, get off my lawn...

Comment Children (Score 1) 207

I firmly believe that any two adults should have the right to communicate privately as long as they are not convicted felons. I'm a mathematician. It blows my mind that anyone thinks it's reasonable to prohibit the use of math in speech. That said, I would love it if I could buy a phone which would allow me, a parent, to read the communications between my children and other people - not to keep them from becoming terrorists, but to protect them. Children don't have the same rights as adults for good reasons. Looking at domestic cases of terrorism (Dylan Roof, James Holmes, the Tsarnaevs, etc..), most of them either were too old to be parented per say, or they had parents who weren't really in control of them, or even parents who may have sympathized with them (e.g. the Tsarnaevs).

Comment Nice (Score 2, Interesting) 78

So they are essentially turning into a pseudo-coop. Companies whose customers are shareholders tend to have reduced conflicts of interest. This is good for all involved. The non-customer shareholders will also benefit from a more valuable company. As of right now, the stock is down 1.28% for the day. Normally, a share buy-back causes prices to inch up... I wonder why investors are behaving strangely.

Comment I don't think it was the POS manufacturer (Score 3, Informative) 34

I am a senior developer at a POS software company, but not the one related to this story. My take from TFA is that the criminals impersonated support folks from the POS vendor, but didn't actually compromise the vendor's network. The PCI DSS has all sorts of requirements for merchants to follow that would have prevented this. For example, the merchants should not let computers in their cardholder data environment have unfettered access to the Internet, all remote access to the CDE must be multi-factor authenticated, and vendor accounts have to be enabled on an as-needed-only basis.

This is probably a case of a criminal calling CiCi's store 2348, getting a franchisee-trained manager on the phone, and telling her "Hi, I'm from ACME POS, your POS vendor. We are calling to install updates to make the chip readers you aren't using yet work later on... and we need access to the workstation in the back of the store. Can you please open a browser and go to www.getmein.com?...". I doubt the defacing of the POS vendor's website has squat to do with it.

Of course, the franchisee is running a consumer-grade router with no outbound filtering on it whatsoever... because they are in a low-margin business and they needed something cheap. The computer died in the back about 6 months ago, so they dropped in a replacement PC from Wal-Mart and promptly disabled UAC, etc.

The manager isn't knowledgeable enough to notice that the domain he is being asked to go to is wrong, the caller ID is wrong, etc. He or she needs to worry about the 73 kids in the restaurant who are dropping pizza on the floor that the new guy isn't cleaning fast enough, the 8 pizzas on the stuck upper belt in the oven, and the bathroom with the overflowing commode. Not to mention the health inspector waiting up front. Trough-style kid's restaurants are a nightmare.

I wish POS software could be handled completely as a service and reside in a VPC managed by the POS vendor. In reality though, the Internet is just not reliable enough for that in many (most) most places, and controlling POS peripherals from a cloud app is not really feasible.

Comment RFC-1918: Why Internet & internet are both cor (Score 1) 211

See https://tools.ietf.org/html/rf... .

An internet is any computer network which is addressed by Internet Protocol.

The Internet is the large super-network of a bunch of interconnected internets.

RFC-1918 is the perfect example of these distinct uses. I firmly believe that since the second aforementioned use is a particular collection of internets, that the correct usage is as a proper noun. You can connect multiple private internets, but that would not constitute the Internet.

Comment The fair use argument is clear (Score 5, Informative) 243

There are four factors to consider when determining if the copying is "fair use":

1. Purpose and character of the use, including whether the use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes.

Google's use of the Java interfaces is to educate other pieces of code about what the implementation does. Interfaces are essentially documentative in nature, not creative...

2. Nature of the copyrighted work

Interfaces are not very creative. All they really do is document the input and output of an implementation. The implementation is where the creativity of the work is expressed.

3. Amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole

I bet the interfaces are less than 3% of the code base. If not, we have an over-architected language on our hands here..

4. Effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work

Oracle didn't lose a dime over this until they started paying lawyers to sue Google. If anything, Google's use of the Java interfaces made Java more valuable, because it brought more developers into the Java fold.

This comment shamelessly copies content from http://www.copyright.gov/fair-... ... a work of the United States Government not subject to copyright protection.

Comment Yes, you should be able to resell (or gift) them (Score 1) 380

As a parent, it's particularly aggravating that if I buy a copy of The Hobbit, for example, for one of my children, he or she cannot then loan it or pass it down to a younger sibling. Paperback books usually last long enough to get through one or two reads by all four of my kids. To reach price parity, an unsharable e-book has to be about 16% of the cost of a paper book. Currently, the Kindle edition of the book is $9.99 and the paperback is $8.31 on Amazon. Therefore, paper is a better deal for me. Of course, digital copies never "degrade", so allowing transfer would kill a natural source of recurring revenue down the line. Bah. Copyright terms are too long. I bet most books make most of their money in the first 5 years.

Comment A few ideas (Score 1) 434

I thought the point of the dryer was to dry the rinse water off of your hands after you thoroughly wash them, eliminating most of the pathogens.

That said, the problem here isn't the dryer. It's the idoits who don't know how to wash their hands. Perhaps in a hospital, we could make smart sinks that detect when you haven't washed your hands thoroughly enough and then curse at you or something... maybe the "red alert" sound. If it's obnoxious enough to get the attention of others in the room, then people will not ignore it so easily.

Or maybe they need to eliminate the sink, and just put the hand washing function into the dryer. I'm sure Dyson could power-wash the skin off of your hands. Wait, then blood-borne pathogens would get everywhere. Unless you cauterize the flesh after you take off the skin.

Maybe we should eliminate the sink and the dryer, and the bidet for those of you that like that sort of thing, and the toilet paper, and have an all-in-one commode that you sit on your hands on that washes, sanitizes, and drys your ass and your hands after you defecate. Ah, it'd feel sooo clean.

Or maybe we should just shit, wipe, flush, wash and dry like responsible people with what we've got.

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