Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Comment Re:Counter-proof (Score 2) 542

Actually, they can. In some jurisdictions, companies asking for bans must put up a bond to compensate the other company in case of lost profits should the verdict find that there is no infringement. One of the benefits of Apple having such a huge cash hoard is that they can offer such bonds, a luxury other companies don't have, and potentially one of the factors that make Apple so much more likely to ask for bans.

Comment Re:Nice work, but... (Score 2, Informative) 87

Not to nitpick, but I just can't help myself. This device can actually spin 30 tubes, not 1. So, 7.5x more than a manual centrifuge. I'll give you the other points, but I am genuinely curious as to how important sanitation is in this context. The stated use case is checking for anemia in undeveloped countries, how necessary is sanitizing the centrifuge for that?

Comment Re:This is a good step but (Score 1) 169

You wrote:
> As long as spam remains highly profitable spamming will continue.

No, as long as spam is _perceived_ as effective by enough people it will continue. Spam need not be commercial: harassing spam is quite effective. Spam need not actually be profitable: as long as enough fools pay someone to send it, or don't realize that what they are being is actually spam services, it will continue splashing into our spam folders at an amazing pace.

Spam is already being highly contained: given that well over 1/2 of all email is spam, and the fact that few of us see even 1% of our incoming email as spam after all the filters in front of it, it's at manageable levels. And spam is much more easily defined and blocked than "cancer", which covers a wide range of naturally occurring and exposure caused diseases. Think of it more like malaria: we've found it difficult to get buy-in to actually drain the swamps and kill all the mosquitos in the world, but we do know how to treat it and to contain it. We just haven't devoted the effort.

Comment Re:FrontPage? (Score 1) 154

HTML and CSS is pretty easy to learn, at least enough to produce the shit people produce with front-page.

Sikuli is good though it would appear it takes control of your computer so really it's pretty useless aside from dong batch repetitive jobs. You can probably get around that by learning more Python but the demo didn't interest me but I'm sure loads of people will love it for automating tasks.

Front-page on the other hand was awful and produced loads of awful sites that unfortunately affect more people. When it's a personal site that's fine but when you used to get businesses knocking out shit websites in frontpage, I don't think anyone can justify it by comparing it to DIY jobs or saying web develops are expensive. Companies should consider some level of accessibility and you'll never really get that from front page. If you learn to do html, css and JavaScript then just do it in Notepad++

And no one *needs* a master in CS. A lot of professional developers don't.

Comment its a matter of enforcement (Score 1) 369

it takes time and energy and money to express your ideas in physical form

but it takes no effort or time or expense to share an idea on the internet

the creation of a physical object is a choke point that can be controlled: i can send 10,000 copies of a song from my home computer to anyone in the world, just by leaving a program running on my computer. but i can't publish and mail 10,000 copies of a song without considerable expense. therefore, "piracy" is a concept only a few could engage in in the pre-internet world, and ip law worked, because it was essentially a gentleman's agreement in an exclusive club of a few publishing companies. but in the internet world, piracy is simply the status quo, because its better, cheaper, and easier. you can't apply laws from a previous technological era on the behavior of tens of millions of teenagers around the world. so there's no enforcement possible, so the laws are defunct

in other words, talk all you want about patenting ideas. who cares? certainly not the teenager in slovakia who just violated your patent without knowing or caring anything about all those archaic legal structures that simply don't matter to him. and you have no recourse to make it matter to him. the era, and the laws derived from that era, is simply over, and you have to get used to it. the internet has rendered patents on ideas, and copyrights, as philosphically untenable concepts

the internet is disruptive technology. it will not be tamed by laws that depend upon the assumption that the production and distribution of media has choke points. instead, the laws will simply be ignored. look: the spanish came to the new world and rendered centuries old civilizations supporting the incan and aztec nobility extinct in a matter of weeks. was it fair to the previous era and the nobility who were invested in that structure to be so rudely toppled? who cares about continuity. who cares about fairness. its technological change: there's no stopping it.

talk all you want about ip laws: the only question is one of enforceability, and ip laws are unenforceable in the internet world. you merely have to adapt to the new world. a set of laws depending upon pre-internet assumptions going back to the invention of the printing press, about the economics of the distribution of media, are laws that simply don't matter any more

i'm not advocating for some far-out cybermarxist alternative fringe ideology that might work if everyone just started acting the way i think they should. what i'm doing is simply describing the already extensive reality of how things are already working in the real world, to people like you who seem to live in a pre-internet bubble of denial

Comment Re:The solution is obvious (Score 1) 1070

Voting with your wallets only works if you actually have a choice in who you do business with and if you are fully aware of those companies' supply chains. In practice, outside of very narrow situations, neither of these is ever really true.

Actually, the scenario you paint would be an improvement over what the SCOTUS just gave us. Since the ruling is that these political shell corporations don't have to disclose where they get their funds from, you now have no ability vote with your wallet, because you'll have no clue who actually gave the money.

Slashdot Top Deals

Logic doesn't apply to the real world. -- Marvin Minsky