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Comment Meaningless (Score 1) 507

"Solving" the problem centrally is meaningless, because you cannot know, for example, how much more I would enjoy an extra set of forks than you would enjoy a spare bicycle tire. Only the people involved in the outcomes can negotiate this directly, as peers, to determine a mutually-agreeable answer. An algorithm cannot do it in their place.

Safari

Safari 10 In macOS Sierra Deactivates Flash, Silverlight and Other Plug-Ins by Default (webkit.org) 114

Apple's web browser Safari 10, which will ship with macOS Sierra, will disable Flash, Java, Silverlight, QuickTime and other plug-ins by default. The move will help the company improve the overall web browsing experience by focusing on HTML5 content. From a post on WebKit blog, authored by Apple's Safari team: When a website directly embeds a visible plug-in object, Safari instead presents a placeholder element with a "Click to use" button. When that's clicked, Safari offers the user the options of activating the plug-in just one time or every time the user visits that website. Here too, the default option is to activate the plug-in only once.

Comment Re:Get ready everyone with anything (Score 1) 189

The deficit caused by these big corporations

Haha, nope. However much money politicians get, they'll outspend it, because they benefit politically from it, because they (still) can borrow on the taxpayers' back, and because they don't pay the consequences themselves.

Also, french here, and it's pretty transparent that the Ministère des Finances going after Google is little more than maybe-legal attempted extortion. It's a mediatic coup destined mostly for french voters, in preparation for the coming presidential elections next year - Hollande has been spending a lot on taxis, journalists, students and more, to ensure their loyalty, and now he's pushing for this as a rally attempt on his own left. This is his strategy to eliminate all competition in advance of the election.

But it's a compromise: it favors the national scene over the international. France has lots of tax agreements with other countries where Google pays its taxes, and going after putative billions like this is seriously endangering those agreements, risking a major disruption of international business. French companies which do a lot of their business abroad could be the eventual victims of this hubris. We have our own tax shelters and fiscal niches, enough to call France a "tax haven" for specific categories of businesses and people, and other coutnries ho'd rather see Google's millions go to their own Treasury might take a hint.

Comment Re:Compaq copied APIs from IBM (Score 4, Informative) 405

Compaq reverse engineered the BIOS. It did not copy the text of some file that defined the API. I don't think that the INT operations even had fixed names - they had numbers. So a BIOS call would be documented as http://stanislavs.org/helppc/i...
INT 16,0 Wait for keystroke and read
This exact operation can be described using different words e.g.
On Int 16,0 the system will pause until a keystroke is pressed and the value will be placed in AH.
I understand the issue in Oracle v. Google to be exact copying of some number of interfere files. Such files did not exist for BIOS as far as I recall.
Social Networks

French Inquiry Launched After Live Suicide Broadcast On Periscope (bbc.com) 108

An anonymous reader writes: French authorities have launched an investigation after a young woman recorded her suicide which streamed live to over 1,000 connected followers on the online video app Periscope. Prosecutors in Egly, Essone, a suburb 15 miles south of Paris, confirmed they had opened the inquiry following the incident which saw the 19-year-old throw herself under a commuter train at a railway station on Tuesday.BBC reports: Previously, she had filmed herself in her flat discussing how she intended to make a video to "send a message", warning younger viewers not to continue to watch what would be a "shocking" act, it was reported. During the filming, the young woman claimed to have been raped and named her attacker, according to the reports. It is not the first time that Periscope has been linked to inappropriate content.
Earth

15-Year-Old Boy Discovers Long-Lost Ancient Mayan City Using Constellations And Google (nzherald.co.nz) 98

Master Moose quotes a report from NZ Herald: Deep within a dense Central American forest sit the ruins of an ancient city the world forgot. And it has just been discovered by a precocious 15-year-old boy. Quebec teenager William Gadoury claims he has discovered a long-lost ancient Mayan city using a clever combination of old-world astronomy and ultra-modern technology. [The inquisitive youngster, who has a deep fascination with ancient Maya, analyzed 22 Mayan constellations and realized that the Mayans aligned their 117 cities with the positions of the stars. Using satellite images from the Canadian Space Agency and Google Earth maps, William zeroed in on the precise location -- and a pyramid and about thirty ancient buildings were spotted, partially hidden, in the dense forest.] UPDATE: As the story continues to spread, so does the skepticism. David Stuart, anthropologist from The Mesoamerica Center-University of Texas at Austin, said via his Facebook page: "This current news story of an ancient Maya city being discovered is false..." Thomas Garrison, an anthropologist at USC Dornsife, told Gizmodo that the objects are relic corn fields.

Comment Reverse-ageism here (Score 1) 561

I'm "only" 36, but only now finally coming to a point in life where reverse-ageism isn't so much of a plague anymore. You see, I'm cursed with looking younger than I am. Like, much younger. As in if I shave I can sneak into high school and not look out of place among the kids.

For illustration, the last door-to-door salesman I saw asked me if my parents were home. Also my wedding was briefly interrupted by a nice lady who thought I was underage (I was 30 then). It's been slowing my career for more than a decade now. I'm systematically passed for promotion because I'll "get [my] chance later" apparently. As for leading projects ? It seems people who merely look older than me would object to being managed by someone who is actually older & with more experience but who does not look the part. While working in big corp I got confused for an intern several times (err no sir I'm the on-call engineer who's been maintaining your critical 30M-subscriber services the last couple years).

Fortunately it's happening less often now. I think I'm finally at a point where I look still enough like the "fresh blood" but with the decade+ experience and accumulated references they think they need as justification (or future plausible deniability ?) for hiring anyone.

Comment Good riddance (Score 4, Informative) 126

Even a passing interest in genealogy will teach any European how massively deadly malaria and influenza have been for their grandparents and great-grandparents. Malaria has killed half of every human being ever, it used to kill millions out of every generation in Europe even in the XXth century, until large-scale efforts at drying out swamps and massive DDT campaigns successfully curbed mosquito breeding to a point where the parasite couldn't spread and renew its carrier pool anymore.

Government

Utah Governor: 'Porn Is a Public Health Crisis' (cnet.com) 822

An anonymous reader writes: Utah Governor Gary Herbert said on his Facebook page: "Pornography is a public health crisis. The problem is rampant, yet it thrives in secrecy and silence." He emitted this thought on signing a resolution which says porn is "a public health hazard leading to a broad spectrum of individual and public health impacts and societal harms." In addition, it "perpetuates a sexually toxic environment." The resolution doesn't just stop there. It goes on to say "due to advances in technology and the universal availability of the Internet, young children are exposed to what used to be referred to as hard core, but is now considered mainstream, pornography at an alarming rate." The resolution says pornography "equates violence toward women and children with sex and pain with pleasure, which increases the demand for sex trafficking, prostitution, child sexual abuse images, and child pornography." It requests "the need for education, prevention, research, and policy change at the community and societal level in order to address the pornography epidemic that is harming the people of our state and nation." In the words of Gov. Gary Herbert, "Today's bills will start an open discussion." I couldn't agree more...

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