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Comment Re:Desktop Windows has more users than X11/Linux (Score 2, Interesting) 403

Please mod parent up. I too have been running Linux on the desktop for many years, and I can do everything I need to do, whether locally or on the net. Sure, there's a few apps that don't work but then there's Wine and virtualization.

As more ecosystems appear, such as smart devices, cloud computing and who knows what's next, the smaller portion of the whole mess will be operating closed, proprietary software, since anyone building and selling these systems won't want to pay for that software when better software is free. When "hello world" in C++ is over 1 MB, you know there's cruft in there that you DON'T need. Why would a device maker want to include that in their product?

Hopefully as users and business realize they don't need to pay the rent-seekers just to use computers, those rent-seekers will fade away.

Comment Re:just wait for them to run up the legal bill 5K (Score 3, Interesting) 122

You're missing a very important point: Under CANADIAN law, the maximum fine for all of these downloading offenses combined is 5000$, provided she's not downloading these files for commercial infringement. She CANNOT be forced by a court to pay more than 5000$ for all the allegations no matter what happens in court!


"A copyright holder can instead elect to protect his/her copyright under section 38.1, which allows for "a sum of not less than $100 or more than $5,000 as the court considers just." for all non-commercial infringement, and $500 up to $20,000 for each commercial infringement.[30]"

This is an excellent law: It protects real Canadians from the flood of toxic lawsuits the USA citizens are suffering.

Canada had to put it in to keep the USA from implementing punitive trade barriers, but in the USA they never put a cap on it so people can get screwed over big time by huge lawsuit judgements. In Canada the 5000$ cap means that no copyright owner will ever go to court to attack a person with no commercial infringement since the 5000$ won't even cover the lawyer costs to file the suit. So these nastygrams can be safely ignored.

Comment No, Richard. BAD idea. (Score 1) 160

It's not a matter of anonymizing supporters who want to pay a few dollars to a non-mainstream news source who do a good job and report on unpopular subjects. It's a matter of hiding the identity of a 1%er who decides to pour megabucks into a news source deliberately misleading the readers.

I will cheerfully admit to sending a few bucks to a cause which is controversial as long as I get to find out when some rich creep tries to buy a "big lie" in one of these corrupt "news" organizations.

Comment Sanctity of the movie experience my *ss. (Score 1) 331

Going to a theater these days little more than a chance to listen to the airheads continually yapping and playing with their cell phones, breathe the air filled with cigarette smoke and sit in a small cramped chair that's sticky with spilled pop and god knows what else. All for 15 bucks and a HUGE price for crappy popcorn and weak, flat pop.

I'd rather poke my own eyes out with a stick than sit in a theater these days, just to watch the 17th remake of an "interpretation" of a crappy comic book.

The modern "theater experience" SUCKS!!! I'm perfectly happy to wait a few months for a movie to be available on streaming rental, a cable channel, or Netflix, so I can watch it on my home screen. If *that* cuts into industry profits then that's NOT my problem.

Comment Re:Apparently... (Score 4, Interesting) 421

What he said.

A few years ago, I handed a netbook to my 80-year old father-in-law. He was used to a Windows PC, but he was visiting and he wanted to check the BBC website. After about 10 minutes I asked him if he knew that it was running Linux (Xubuntu) and he was surprised, as he had no problems at all doing just what he wanted to do.

So Linux on the desktop Just Works. It is a genuine and viable alternative to anyone who wants to use a system that isn't continually monetizing *you* as the product to everyone's benefit except you.

Comment There's no need to teach CS grads about security. (Score 1) 173

There's no need to teach CS grads about security. Here's why:

If a cyber security breach happens, then the company that produced and sold the vulnerable software is never responsible. All end user rights have been signed away in a EULA or some other crooked scheme, so the end user gets to shoulder all the risk.

Since the company sees no impact of a cybersecurity incident, the company execs take no hit. Since they take no hit, the programmers and CS grads who wrote the crap software that caused the problem in the first place also see no impact.

Did people stop shopping at Target? Nope. Are any of the companies that have recently been breached seen senior executives going to jail? Nope. Maybe a few people got fired and stock prices temporarily dipped, but there's so many of these breaches lately that they are all getting lost in the noise.

So there's no point in teaching the CS grads anything about cybersecurity, since it doesn't mean anything to them. It doesn't make them any money and the companies that will be hiring them don't give a damn either.

Comment Re:Don't Be Evil (Score 3, Interesting) 432

All the "same laws" that apply to all other consumer products are pretty well useless. Read a cell phone contract or any so-called "warranty" carefully on any "consumer" product and you'll realize you have f-all rights. Manufacturers and vendors are continually chipping away at "consumer rights" with the willing assistance of their well-paid Congress, Senate and SCOTUS critters.

Try to take a broken toaster back to any big box retailer and get your money back: Unless they really want your repeat business they will make you suffer in a long line to get a "reconditioned" replacement that won't last a week.

The real advantage of F/OSS is that it gives you no warranty or promise of any kind, but that it DOES give you the capability of fixing it yourself and making the system do what YOU want. As long as your software is controlled by a vendor or any other third party that does NOT have your interests at heart, you remain at their mercy. And they will only act in their best interests, not yours.

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