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Comment MS to the "rescue" again (Score 2) 54

Looks like Microsoft is up to their old tricks and maybe O'Reilly didn't publish fast enough:

They have to work really hard to step in and mess things up for countries trying to break free (or for those who DID break free) from proprietary MS products. Brazil has a lot of corruption, so this seems to fit right in :(

Comment Re:I trust them to do the right thing (Score 1) 219

>"I'll see what the end result is. There's enough browsers to choose from nowadays."

And that is where you are WRONG. Please list all the browsers that are:

* 100% open source
* Run on all major platforms, including Linux
* Run on just about any Linux and without relying only on distro packages.
* Will work on 99+% of websites because the browser is an accepted standard (think business software, not just home stuff).

Your list is going to be very small. And that is where a lot of us stand. Firefox is not something we can just throw away, and for many of us, Chrome is simply not an option. It either does not give us the control or addons we need, or we can't tolerate the closed-nature or potential spyware like environment.

Comment Auto-pay (Score 1) 84

>"Sprint's plan requires the account owner to enable AutoPay, ensuring the bill is paid on time each month"

Yep, and the other carriers are doing this too. And it is WRONG. They are all slipping this anti-consumer crap into their plans. How about not trying to force this type of s*** down our throats and punish people who actually SHOW they are irresponsible by penalizing JUST THOSE PEOPLE instead of everyone?

Comment Re:Good. (Score 1) 95

>"There is a reasonable expectation of privacy on ones own property, and this was recording sound, not just video footage."

Is there? So you think the many the thousands and thousands of government-owned cameras never include ANY private property in their views? I think this is more about audio than anything else.

Don't get me wrong, I think the UK has gone WAY overboard with surveillance, and the USA is headed down the same path.

Comment Re:Facebook use plummets during business hours (Score 3, Insightful) 116

I have yet to find a single case, ever, that I would think that autoplaying video and/or audio on a website is appropriate. It is just plain, 100% annoying and presumptuous. Offer a NON ANIMATED option to play something and give the user a choice.

Besides being extremely annoying, unwanted video consumes TONS of bandwidth, CPU, and battery on devices.

I absolutely predicted how annoying the web would become when site designers got a hold of these "wonderful" tools that were coming and have been dreading what was coming. We used to be able to stop this crap in its tracks with addons/plugins that restricted Flash, and disable animated GIF's. Those days are now gone. Turn off javascript and 90% of websites just flat out break. Turn off HTML5 video/audio and then you have no access to ANY video/audio.

The web is turning into TV- something for sites to FORCE what they want you to see, they way they want you to see it. Want to use a smaller window for your browser? Well too F'ing bad! Want a nice menu at the top so you can jump to the info you want? Well too F'ing bad! Want to read something without things jumping in front of you over and over? Well too F'ing bad- "we want your feedback" "subscribe!" "take our survey" "click here to chat!!" Want to know how big a page is? Well too F'ing bad- it scrolls forever, adding more and more without warning? Want to just see some actual content? Well too F'ing bad- you have to wade through multi megapixel useless images, sectionalized areas, side scrolling, junk with tons of while space. Want to try and read something without distraction? Well too F'ing bad- every single site has to have animated junk all over it, constantly moving and scrolling. Want to click on something and have instant action because your time is important? Well too F'ing bad- we are going to make EVERYTHING fade in and fade out, scroll in and scroll out. Ug!!!!!!!!!!

Sorry, this stuff touched a nerve. A big one.

Comment Re:Captain Obvious police report. (Score 2) 640

>"As a parent, I cannot imagine the grief this father is dealing with right now, but I certainly I hope this lapse of common sense in a desperate attempt to blame the car is temporary, given this report released by Captain Obvious."

Yet we see it ALL THE TIME. Child shot- it is the gun's fault, guns should be banned. Lung cancer- it is the cigarette's fault, cigarettes should be banned. Child killed in a fast car- it is the car's fault, fast cars should be banned. It isn't much of a leap. I call it the "save the children" mentality. It is when all logic and reason gets thrown out the window for a totally emotional response. Doesn't have to be about children either, it is just a general emotional response to control things and others. This is why we now live in a country where everyone is a terrorist suspect and our privacy and constitutional rights have eroded away.

* I don't want to live in a world that is perfectly safe.
* People need to take responsibility for their own decisions.
* You can't really be free and safe at the same time.
* Sometimes bad things just happen.
* Just because something isn't right for you, doesn't mean it isn't right for everyone.

Comment Re: Trade union fighting for survival (Score 1) 722

>"A flat tax would move a lot of money from the middle class to the people above."

Not necessarily. The rich find ways to hide their money and income... it is precisely because we have an insane, out-of-control, impossible to understand tax code with so many zillions of deductions and rules and lawyers and accountants that they can take advantage of the system. With a properly implemented flat tax, all those rules and loopholes evaporate. Many people believe they would pay considerably more than they do now.

Comment Re: Trade union fighting for survival (Score 1) 722

Yep. Exactly the same reason for a flat tax (one level, no loopholes, no exemptions, no deductions). It would pretty much close down the IRS, all the tax lawyers- many thousands of useless, non-productive jobs (adds nothing to the GDP). Tax would be super simple and possibly even require no tax returns. The country could save billions of dollars a year.

Comment Re:I seriously doubt this works... (Score 4, Insightful) 142

Exactly. It doesn't make sense to try and crush the components... that likely won't destroy the flash storage, anyway.

The only thing that needs to be destroyed is the storage. So design the storage so it can be zapped. When triggered, have the batteries zap it with a a stepped up voltage. No explosion. No crush. No fire. No noise. Not even visible to others. Just zapped storage. Problem solved- phone is permanently bricked.

Comment translation (Score 4, Insightful) 68

>" they believe access to the NFC functionality in the iPhone would allow retailers to provide "a richer and more convenient customer experience."


"We are upset that Apple might not share customer identity and other information with us because we want it. We have a right to track our customers and what they buy and who they are and etc."

Um yeah. I will still probably just use cash, thanks.

Comment And if you have none, then what? (Score 1) 651

>"People who want to visit the United States could be asked to hand over their social-media passwords...If they don't want to cooperate then you don't come in."

And exactly what are you supposed to do if you have no "social media" passwords because you have no such accounts. I have no Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, etc accounts at all....

Comment Fingerprints should not be used (Score 2) 75

and iris scans are an improvement, but there is something better (faster, cheaper, less abuse potential)...

Using fingerprints and allowing third-parties and governments to have access to that data is unacceptable. Not only because the government should have no need to track what people are doing but because the gov should not have fingerprint registration data (which will be horribly abused) . Once you give this data to the government (or big business), it will NEVER be erased or restricted, regardless of claims or laws- it will go into huge databases and shared between all agencies and used however they want for as long as they want. Even worse, with every crime investigation, you will be searched without probable cause.

There is only one safer and practical biometric I know of- that is deep vein palm scan. That registration data cannot be readily abused. It can't be latently collected like DNA, fingerprints, and face recognition can. You have to know you are registering/enrolling when it happens. You don't leave evidence of it all over the place. When you go to use it, you know you are using it every time. And on top of all that, it is accurate, fast, reliable, sanitary, unchanging, live-sensing, and cheap. If you must participate in a biometric, this is the one you should insist on using.

More info:

Regardless, we also need to realize that IT IS NOT EVERYONE'S BUSINESS WHAT WE ALL DO. The first step in securing freedom is privacy. When you are tracked, you are losing your freedom, whether you realize it or not. Anonymous purchasing and traveling should be a right, not a harassment.

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