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Comment Re:Blank check? (Score 1) 547

To break the constitution, it needs to be your data. It isn't your data. It is someone else's data about you. The only thing protecting you is your right to privacy, which you don't seem to have any more. Well, I imagine 'public figures' will be exempt 'in the interest of national security' despite the fact that their browsing history will be more valuable than the bulk data on the masses.

Comment Re:Twitter as a protocol (Score 1) 284

The theory is to monetize the data they collect from operating the messaging platform. While this data has value, this article is pointing out that it is crap data and has little value. Maybe even at '$10 a share', it is enough to operate or maybe it will go under.

I was kind of hoping that WhatsApp's $1 a year business model would work out, but alas we seem to be stuck with the major messaging platforms all operated by people who only see the value in spying on their users. Maybe one of the minor players with a different model will get noticed if enough of the major ones fail.

Comment Re:To be fair, a pretty easy run (Score 1) 246

I think that the driver moving away from the wheel while transport officials watched and not getting arrested is a pretty big deal. It might not be a technical hurdle they overcome, but is it a milestone on the legislative and psychological side. We have years worth of these 'publicity stunts' that need to happen before the general public lets autonomous vehicles on the road without supervision.

Its going to be just like the aviation or space industry, where no politician wants to have their name associated with the headlines about the first fatality. A majority of politicians need to believe there is 0% chance of it affecting their re-election, which isn't going to happen so it needs to be buried in committees and red tape.

Submission + - Uber and taxis to operate on level playing field in Victoria, Australia (

An anonymous reader writes: The Victorian government in Australia will introduce a $2 levy on all Uber services in addition to regulating taxi fares and buying back a number of taxi licenses. The scheme is aimed at not only legalising Uber but treating both taxis and ride sharing services the same

Submission + - 2016 Hugo Award Winners Announced

Dave Knott writes: The recipients of the 2016 Hugo awards have been announced. Presented annually since 1955, the Hugos are (along with the Nebulas) one of science fiction's two most prestigious awards. They are voted on by members of the World Science Fiction Convention ("Worldcon"), the most recent of which, MidAmeriCon II was held this past weekend in Kansas City. Notable winners include:

Best Novel: The Fifth Season , by N.K. Jemisin
Best Novella: Binti , by Nnedi Okorafor
Best Novelette: "Folding Beijing", by Hao Jingfang, trans. Ken Liu
Best Short Story: "Cat Pictures Please", by Naomi Kritzer
Best Graphic Story: The Sandman: Overture , written by Neil Gaiman, art by J.H. Williams III
Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form: The Martian , screenplay by Drew Goddard, directed by Ridley Scott
Best Dramatic Presentation, ShortForm: Jessica Jones: "AKA Smile", written by Scott Reynolds, Melissa Rosenberg, and Jamie King, directed by Michael Rymer

As in the previous two years, the 2016 Hugos were subject to considerable controversy, as highly-politicized factions within science fiction fandom attempted to influence the awards via a concerted campaign that influenced the nomination process. Those actions once again proved unsuccessful, as the nominees put forth by these activists failed to win in any of the major awards categories.

Comment Re:Another one bites the dust (Score 1) 365

This is one of the stupidest acquisitions I have ever heard of.

Not at all, they get pretty much a real list of millions of people along with some real data..

Is a list of millions of people worth 26 billion dollars?

You could hire an army to scrape a larger list in a short period of time for a fraction of that. Or just purchase a list from someone who already has similar data, such as Microsoft for example.

Maybe they have a plan to monetize it. I can't think of a way to do it without grossly devaluing LinkedIn, but then again I don't have 26 billion dollars.

Comment Re:No need to fight (Score 1) 226

I'm surprised how much hostility geeks have to emoji. We invented the damn things, with things like :-) and ASCII art and Shift-JIS art in Japan. Emoji characters just make them easier to type.

And they will remain in text because people want them there. I'm also surprised geeks hate the thought of them being embedded as a standard code point, rather than having to write parsers to convert the source :boat: syntax to whatever bespoke encoding they are using.

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