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Comment Re:FDA Approval (Score 1) 100

This would be a class 1 device, if it were sold as a medical device, which it isn't. While there are lots of requirements on companies that want to sell medical devices to hospitals, the hospitals themselves are under much more relaxed rules when it comes to trying out new stuff.

Getting Google Glass past the FDA should not be too hard, as long as it is just recording. Once you start using it to overlay data and navigate, you enter class 2 territory, and that's when things get hairy.

(I worked on quality assurance and regulatory approval for class 2 medical devices in my previous job...)

Comment Was reading Slashdot a mistake? (Score 5, Informative) 189

I've been following this site since before it had user accounts. It has really been a downhill ride in recent years. It is more and more just about click-whoring.

This article is a case in point. Slashdot editors must know by now that Florian Mueller is a professional troll who is paid to spew FUD about his clients' enemies in the media. That the editors do not care, since FUD articles apparently are click magnets, just makes me feel nauseous about coming back here.

There are so many more intelligent commentaries about this ruling that could have been posted instead.

Comment Re:Homesteading (Score 2) 269

Natural rights is an interesting topic, indeed. However, if there is ever a right that is entirely artificial, then it is property. The labor mixing argument has largerly fallen out of serious consideration in philosophical circles these days, being subject to way too many intrinsic problems.

Like, if I make a a glass of juice and pour it into the ocean, does that make the ocean mine, or did I just waste it?

Once you start looking at the enormous variety of property claims that exist, then you realize that property is better regarded as a cluster of disparate right claims rather than a single "has" or "has not" claim to owning something.

In context of the TFA, they apparently do not pause to consider that any property has to be grounded in some national law or another, or an entirely new body of law with their own courts has to be created for them.

Space has no need of such antiquated notions of property. Once we start getting there, we need agreements (and contracts) to delineate who can do what where, and those agreements will probably and hopefully cover vastly overlapping areas, not create artificial borders etched in stone like an Africa carved up by Europeans - whichi was and will be a blueprint for endless future conflict.

Comment Clarification (Score 1) 71

I see a lot of articles in the various "news press" that fail to do even the most rudimentary fact checking before reposting with their own take on this. Most post some variant of "Samsung drops pantet lawsuits in Europe". That is not what this is all about. They are dropping all their attempts to get injunctions based on standards essential patents in Europe. This is most likely because the EU is looking into the matter, and the EU can stomp a company pretty hard if they are found to violate competition rules.

Patent lawsuits are otherwise proceeding as normal. Those of us in the peanut gallery will be kept entertained for years to come, I am sure.

Comment Re:Poor Summary (Score 1) 227

I keep being astounded that environmental protection and polluter pays principle are somehow considered "leftist" ideas. They would seem to me to be a perfect fit for both conservativism and market libertarianism. Not that I am either.

But then again, I guess the ideological "right" in many countries now belong to more of a pillage and plunder ideology than either of those.

Comment Here is the problem (Score 5, Insightful) 347

Samsung, Motorola and other old players in the telecoms game have a huge problem today because for many years they have been playing reasonably nice with each other. It used to be that the players came together in standards organizations, agreed on standards, promised to license them to each other on FRAND terms, and then competed on implementation. Then a new kid comes to town who wants everyone to license it their FRAND patents without giving any back.

Apple, like Microsoft, hates to offer their own patents as FRAND, and only ever tries to create formal standards when they need to subvert another standard. They are the masters of de facto standards. Since the old players are now desperately abusing their FRAND patents as leverage in patent negotiations, they have a difficulty in calling Apple out on the hypocrisy of this.

However, the big loser in all of this is us. Since FRAND patents are so weak in aggressive patent wars, and antitrust bodies are now looking to make them even weaker, companies will stop making FRAND promises. The result will be less standardization and more lawsuits, leading to less capable and more expensive products. Hence Google's point is actually a very good one.

Comment Re:Are we reading too much into this? (Score 1) 183

Because unlike most other tablets, the Nexus 7 does not have much profit of a margin. Many commentators are speculating that Google is selling the cheapest version at loss. So if Nokia is interested in money, this is a particularly bad target. Those hunting for a piece of the profit cake go after the big money makers, not products with razor thin margins. The explanation that makes more sense is that this is an extension of the shenanigans that Microsoft and Nokia have been playing against Android for a while through patent troll proxies (MOSAID et al). This is an ugly game that those familiar with Microsoft history would not be surprised by, but which is quite new to Nokia. And in the financial state that Nokia is right now, they really should be focusing on making products that people actually want to buy, not supporting another company's soon to be released tablets by hoping to torpedo Google's.

Comment Oh, joy. (Score 5, Insightful) 224

IP addresses tend to change hands. The "bad guys" get new IP addresses, while some innocent bystanders gets the old, tainted ones. It is hard enough to get an IP address off a vigilante style blacklist, but how bloody hard would it not be to get it off a court ordered IP block? The block would likely be in a different country altogether, or perhaps several countries at once.

They are really starting to mess hard with the core structure of the internet. But of course, these big cartels do not care. They get their slightly higher profits, and as usual someone else gets to sort out the mess later on.

Comment Re:We could learn a thing or two.... (Score 4, Insightful) 561

It is easy to promise that later presidents or governments will do something, then do nothing except watch the divide between the emissions and the emissions target grow larger every day. What mythical president is it that will slash emissions by 20% + whatever increase there has been between 2005 and whatever year the reductions will start? If we can't start now, what makes anyone think we can start later, when the costs will be even greater?

Note that China has not even promised to reduce its total emissions. As long as its GDP is growing by double digits every year, reducing the intensity of the emissions even with 80% won't reduce their total emissions by 2020.

And meanwhile the scientists are debating whether we are passing the threshold of catastrophic changes the next few years, or if we already have passed it.

We are so screwed.

Comment The roof the roof the roof is on fire (Score 1) 269

It is nice out of the box thinking, but seriously, a glass roof with people walking around on it? First, the angle from the sun into that hole is so bad, you will only have sunlight at the lower end for ... what? a few minutes a day? You need mirrors with that stuff. Second, that glass roof is crying out for disaster. An earthquake or a terrorist bomb would shatter and send it like machine gun fire down at the heads of everyone living below. The glass area needs to be cordoned off totally from anyone and anything on basic safety concerns. Let alone due to the glass losing its translucency as people, you know, make it dirty, scratch it, and generally mess things up. Third, you really want some plan for controlling flooding. Sooner or later it will happen, and you need some way to deal with it. Not sure if they have thought about it, but the design looks pretty intimidating in that respect (one big hole).

We need to start building in depth, but I think the way to go is rather to use mirrors or artificial sunlight, and build many more but smaller structures that are easier to secure against natural and man-made disasters.

Comment That is a gigaton worth of patents... (Score 1) 578

"Our Mobile Devices business segment will have approximately 14,600 granted patents and 6,700 pending patent applications, worldwide. Our patent portfolio includes numerous patents related to various industry standards, including 2G, 3G, 4G, H.264, MPEG-4, 802.11, open mobile alliance (OMA) and near field communications (NFC)." ( )

Given that Google's number of patents was previously estimated to be around 700 something, this is a huge step up in the patent war - or a way to end it.

Motorola Mobile also invested in a lot of interesting startup companies. One of them was Danger, which MS bought and then lost its founders to Google, where they came to lead its Android project -- it is a small world. I wonder if Google will pick up those investments as well.

Another interesting twist is that this means that Google is now suddenly throw into a lawsuit with Apple. Hopefully some of these lawsuits will now be settled with cross-licensing without costing the consumer any more.

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