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Comment Re:Streisand Effect and Mohammad cartoons (Score 1) 512

Since you mention myths, I will have to inform you that "Christian law" is precisely one of those myths as well. Christian law and Unicorns both fall into the same category. There is Old Testament Mosaic Law which was specifically ruled not applicable to Christians and isn't even a usable codified legal system. I guess you could say Catholic Canon law was a legal system as it was a codified system; but it wasn't a fully formed legal system for a state. And of course Protestants would have something to say about that being made the law of the land.

On the other hand Sharia is a codified Islamic Law with 4 schools of jurisprudence. Islam the religion and Islam the political and legal system have been totally integrated since its beginnings with Muhammad. Many Muslim majority countries have Constitutions that state that all laws are based on Sharia or can't conflict with Sharia. Depending on which school of jurisprudence, Sharia has a penalty of death for apostasy (leaving Islam), blasphemy and of course the ever famous stoning for adultery. While the percentage of Muslims in the United States that want Sharia to be the law of the land is low, there are many countries where vast majorities of the population want Sharia to be the law of the land.

Here is a Pew research poll about Muslims beliefs about Sharia that got famous rather recently with the whole Bill Maher/Ben Affleck/Sam Harris debate. It shows that, while the percentages of Muslims in some countries that want Sharia to be the law of the land is low, there are many countries with very high percentages that desire this. And in counties that do, there are often high percentages that feel death is the appropriate penalty for apostasy and blasphemy. And this poll didn't even include Saudia Arabia or Iran because you cannot conduct a poll there - places where full Sharia law is the legal system of the country and it would likely mean imprisonment or death for Muslims to disagree.

I have no disagreement with you that in the United States has zero chance of this happening, and I don't know of any Muslim here that would want that (although the percentages locally are not zero - and we get immigrants from places like Somalia who do hold these extreme beliefs). But while these percentages collectively are not a majority of Muslims, they do represent that hundreds of millions of Muslims world-wide do favor an Islamic state and death for insulting the Prophet among other extreme beliefs.

But it gets rather tiresome constantly hearing the "dangers" of folks like Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, and Pat Robertson. I don't think Huckabee belongs with the other two as he is generally pretty reasonable. But none of these "dangerous" people are calling for an overthrow of the United States to be replaced by some type of Christian theocracy under the rule of a non-existent Biblical Law.

Comment Re:Another blaming of the victims (Striesand Effec (Score 1) 512

Well stoning adulterers is part of Mosaic Law and Sharia law but is not part of Christianity. In fact there was a very specific prohibition against this as one of the most famous words of Christ: "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone." So anyone who would do something like that could not claim this as a Christian mandate since Jesus specifically prohibited it. I can't say this was not done at one time, but it was certainly not Christian. In fact if you've read the "Scarlet Letter", adulterers were certainly not approved of but they were not executed. This is largely conflating Muslim Sharia law and Christian beliefs.

Jesus Christ brought a new Covenant which wiped away the old Mosaic Law. So there was never a need to "Edit" Christianity since things like stoning adulterers, burning witches, killing homosexuals were never allowed for Christian's in the first place if they follow what Christ and the Apostles taught. The Catholic Church added many things to the practice of Christianity that weren't in the Bible, but I don't think the three items you mentioned were ever part of official church or even Catholic Canon law. That was why things like the burning of witches in Salem was a short lived anomaly. Although there were many abuses and extra-Biblical practices of the Church such as the Inquisition which was implemented by churches in some countries in the 12th to 18th centuries.

Interestingly enough, since you mention burning witches, the Saudi's are still performing executions for witchcraft as late as 2012 (even though the result is the same, at least beheading is a quicker death than burning): Saudi man executed for 'witchcraft and sorcery'

But I do agree with your post though. The only way that there will be true compatibility with Western values is the elimination of Sharia Law and political Islam everywhere.

Comment Re:Thank the ghods. (Score 1) 156

The jury ignored prior art only for patents where they found no infringement. It there is no patent infringement, the 'prior art' argument is moot.

This is not correct as Hogan admitted post trial to the many erroneous legal theories that he led the jury into. Judge Koh ruled that no matter how many errors the jury engaged in during jury deliberations federal law disallowed any consideration of these errors to overturn the jury verdict or order a new trial.

Comment Re:No matter what the outcome actually is.... (Score 1) 1184

Plenty of phones with rounded corners were found to not be infringing. Can the talking points.

Apple lost on the D'889 patent which is the one on the iPad design. So Samsung's rectangle with rounded corners were also not infringing. No one one either side here seems to understand that.

Comment Impact of an Apple Victory (Score 5, Insightful) 1184

Actually the only real loss for Apple was the most talked about design patent. The D'889 iPad Design patent infringement alleged against Samsung's tablets was rejected by the Jury. This was the rectangle with rounded corners patent. So this is the one bright spot in this travesty.

The other design patents D'087 affected just a few phones, and D''677 effect most of the phones. But since they didn't effect all of the devices these patents probably won't have much of a long term impact (other than costing Samsung a lot).

The D'305 patents is a user interface patent on a grid of rounded square icons on a black background (can you believe they actually got a patent on that - sounds like most GUI interfaces the last 20 years). This impacted most of the phones but not all again so it shows this will probably not have a long term impact beyond the jury verdict itself.

The killer is the '381 "rubber band" patent and the '915 multi-touch/pinch-to-zoom patent. These are just patents on basic ideas. These are ideas, not inventions. All that is required to implement them is just the idea. A programmer could go and implement these features never having seen them before. These basic ideas are pretty much going to follow from using your fingers as the user interface so removing these features will make a pretty crappy user experience.

But the experts the idiotic news organizations interview say this big Apple win will lead to a lot of new innovation because competitors will have to jump through hoops to get around these patents. I know, we'll have a tongue interface. Double lick to zoom anyone!!

Comment Software patents are patenting ideas (Score 1) 434

One basic problem I have with software patents is that they are just patenting ideas, which was disallowed when I was growing up - it had to be an actual invention. On almost all of these patents you could read the abstract (never looking at the details in the patent) and a decent programmer could go away and implement this - never having seen the actual product (in the rare cases there is one) or patent details. So what is the patent system protecting? You don't needs billions in R&D to develop ideas - they just come into your head and they shouldn't be protected by a new government controlled monopoly on ideas. And any device as complex as a smart phone has hundreds of thousands of ideas Apple and other manufacturers have appropriated for free.

Comment Re:Technology knows no right from wrong (Score 2) 167

Secularists are losing ground in all Islamic countries. While they may be sincere they will be rapidly replaced by Islamists if Mubarak is forced from power. Islam is antithetically opposed to secularism. Look at what happened in Iran when people thought that a large secular movement could succeed. So whether it is done by the Muslim Brotherhood or not it will ultimately result in their gaining power.

Comment Re:A really nasty trick (Score 3, Insightful) 765

This serves two strategic purposes for Google. First, it advances a codec that's de facto controlled by Google at the expense of a codec that is a legitimate open standard controlled by a multi-vendor governance process managed by reputable international standards bodies. ("Open source" != "open standard".) And second, it will slow the transition to HTML5 and away from Flash by creating more confusion about which codec to use for HTML5 video, which benefits Google by hurting Apple (since Apple doesn't want to support Flash), but also sucks for users.

"Isn't Google really standing up for freedom and justice, because H.264 requires evil patent licensing?"

You say "patent licensing" as if it was just signing a legal agreement. Their license requires significant royalties to be paid and which we must all pay. We all pay a MPEG LA tax when we buy any of the devices or software that has to decode H.264.

While those that despise Adobe Flash are desperate to see it replaced all I know is I've never had to pay a penny to use the Flash plugin.

I have no problem with the standard being controlled by Google since they are making it available gratis. Apple / Microsoft and the big players could have paid off the smaller vendors in the patent pool and made H.264 available for free as well, but they want their share of the tax and are pushing this very expensive "Open Standard" to shut out smaller competitors.

I imagine Google will eventually be sued over the codec but I think this would takes years to resolve and possibly this would be a way to break the MPEG LA tax.

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