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Yale Law Student Wants Government To Have Everybody's DNA

Bryan Gividen Re:Good Idea (544 comments)

who the frack cares what a college student has to say?

I do when that college student has a PhD in Molecular Biophysics and Chemistry, was lead bioinformatics scientist at a pharmaceutical company, and goes to the most prestigious law school in the United States (possibly world). (Source: http://www.seringhaus.net/bio.html)

more than 4 years ago
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Why the First Cowboy To Draw Always Gets Shot

Bryan Gividen Re:BANG! (398 comments)

You really shot yourself in the foot with that non-first post, didn't you?

more than 4 years ago
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Apple's "iPad" Out In the Open

Bryan Gividen Doesn't Create a Need (1713 comments)

This entire presentation seems a little disappointing. Really, it looks, acts, and feels like a giant iPod Touch. Whereas the iPhone and iPod really created a need , I don't see that this substantially innovate to make it a must-have. It doesn't seem to improve on anything so substantially that it is an obvious choice. Maybe I need to see a few more videos, but I don't see this pulling serious market share away from Kindle's targeted market segment.

more than 4 years ago
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Carnivorous Clock Eats Bugs

Bryan Gividen Re:Applications (197 comments)

I think the practical application is that it gets rid of bugs and it tells the time.

more than 5 years ago
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Of Catty Rants and Copyrights

Bryan Gividen What other papers? (339 comments)

The Wikipedia page for Coalinga, California (where I assume this is taking place) estimates the 2007 population at just over 18,000 people. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coalinga,_California). It seems that the paper involved, the Hanford Sentinel, services all of King County (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kings_County,_California) which has a little over 150,000 people total. Granted, I am sure the LA Times or some other large circulation paper could condemn them, I doubt they cater to the same audience as those subscribing to a small-town oriented paper like the Sentinel.

Still, I agree with your point - people need to shun this circulation for its lack of journalistic integrity. Sadly, there aren't a lot of competitors (to my knowledge - someone have better knowledge?) to wag their finger at them.

more than 5 years ago
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Middle-School Strip Search Ruled Unconstitutional

Bryan Gividen Re:Qualified Immunity (528 comments)

I honestly haven't looked at the detailed facts of the case so I can't say whether or not I disagree with you or not. I'm just citing the reason given by the Justices.

more than 4 years ago
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Middle-School Strip Search Ruled Unconstitutional

Bryan Gividen Qualified Immunity (528 comments)

The reason the officials were not held responsible is because of an idea called qualified immunity (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qualified_immunity) which essentially states that public officials cannot be held personally responsible for actions they undertake as part of their public duty and which, if illegal or unconstitutional, must clearly be illegal or unconstitutional.

It is interesting to note that the two Justices that dissented regarding whether or not the school officials were covered by qualified immunity were Justice John Paul Stevens and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and that Justice Souter was a part of the majority. If Sotomayor is placed on the bench, it is feasible she would rule much closer to Justice Ginsburg and Stevens then to Souter on these types of matters.

more than 5 years ago
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$1.9 Million Award In Thomas Case Raises Constitutional Questions

Bryan Gividen Answers to All Three Tests (439 comments)

1) the degree of reprehensibility of the defendant's actions
File sharing with the intent to avoid paying for a product or help others circumvent paying for a product is, at least to some degree, reprehensible. (I am assuming objectivity and being reasonable.) However, from the facts of this particular case, it doesn't seem that the act is so blatantly reprehensible that it warrants a life-sentence worth of monetary damages.

2) the disparity between the harm to the plaintiff and the punitive award
This seems huge to me. Though I don't have the facts on this case and might judge differently if I did, it seems that the RIAA will have an incredibly hard time showing that the damages they incurred are even one a hundredth of the punitive damages. The 24 songs this woman had available would have to have been WIDELY disseminated to reach that kind of number. It will be interesting to see what kind of evidence they produce to address this question.

3) the similarity or difference between the punitive award and civil penalties authorized or imposed in comparable situations.
This is where the Eighth Amendment has tangential application. (None that takes direct legal effect, but still affects the approach that the courts' take.) This is obviously an incredibly excessive fine. Punitive damages, as the name obviously indicates, act to "punish" the individual for bad behavior. Two-million dollars as punishment for twenty-four files could very easily be considered excessive, egregious, unconscionable, or any other term for "whacked out" that I can think of.

more than 5 years ago
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In Round 2, Jammie Thomas Jury Awards RIAA $1,920,000

Bryan Gividen Eighth Amendment - One Line (793 comments)

"Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted." One line says it all. I can't see this standing when it is appealed. Twenty-four music files being available for download, whether it's wrong or not, does not warrant what is effectually a life-sentence worth of money.

more than 5 years ago
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Wii Boosts Parkinson's Treatments

Bryan Gividen Re:Proves once again.. (122 comments)

Nothing new here, unless you have a relative who struggles with Parkinson's and you have more hope for helping the crippling symptoms subside a bit.

more than 5 years ago
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Wii Boosts Parkinson's Treatments

Bryan Gividen Preventitive Medicine? (122 comments)

I am very interested to see whether or not use of the Wii could result in either preventing Parkinson's or delaying it significantly. Obviously there isn't any data available at this point on such theory, but I think 20 to 30 years down the road it would be interesting to see what happens to people who regularly used Wii and future Wii-like consoles.

Of course, since IIANDoctor, I have no idea on the science behind that. Anyone know whether or not that's feasible?

more than 5 years ago
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11-Year-Old Graduates With Degree In Astrophysics

Bryan Gividen Re:Games Are a "Waste of Time" (648 comments)

While I don't espouse this particular idea (nor do I argue against it), the boy may see a difference between art and entertainment. Generally, video games are classified as popular entertainment that uses technical skills commonly employed in arts, but video games themselves are not considered art. However, movies are commonly considered an art form which also is employed as entertainment.

Like I said, I'm not for or against that idea, but it seems like a logical distinction and could account for his preference.

more than 5 years ago
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Anti-Piracy Dog Uncovers Huge Cache of Discs

Bryan Gividen How does the dog do this? (283 comments)

Does anyone have information on how the dog distinguishes between the CDs physically? I would assume that there is some chemical difference in the materials that the CDs are composed of. Does anyone have a link or info on this?

more than 5 years ago
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Google Labs Offers Table-Based Search Results

Bryan Gividen Re:Bible Books (Titus) (165 comments)

Also startling is that Titus appears to be a body-builder in addition to being a proselytizer with St. Paul. -Bryan Gividen

more than 5 years ago
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Hulu Testing Client App; Boxee Dispute Explained

Bryan Gividen Revenues Reduced (166 comments)

I can see your point, but I think the only circumstances that it would happen is not Hulu "work[ing] with" Boxee, but instead buying them out or co-opting them. Hulu wants the ability to exclude people or devices from their service at will. Having that type of power allows them to use proprietary formats or hardware to deliver content. If Boxee exists, Hulu would have a much tougher time creating revenue off of new devices which do exactly the same thing as Boxee.

more than 5 years ago
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Craigslist Kills Erotic Services Ads, Will Launch Adult Section

Bryan Gividen Still a Move in the Right Direction (390 comments)

Even though people will always be able to murder, steal, cheat, lie, etc. That does not mean we should consider all efforts to stop illicit activities as fruitless. I am proud of Craigslist for taking a step in the right direction and working to police themselves. Similarly, I'm proud of the authorities for working to enforce the laws that legislatures have passed.

more than 5 years ago
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Does It Suck To Be An Engineering Student?

Bryan Gividen Re:So lets see... (971 comments)

Though I don't have numbers immediately available to back it up, income is significantly lower unless a "soft major" (read as: social sciences) attends graduate school. Those students which graduate in Political Science, Sociology, Psychology, etc. are faced with very low incomes or no job with only a Bachelor's for the most part. Engineering, Accounting, and even "Ology" majors see a much higher placement and pay right out of graduate school.

I know that in admissions to many of the law schools I am applying to, a 3.8 in History and a 3.3 in Mechanical Engineering are comparable grades to the admissions committees. The inflated GPA which soft majors enjoy really does little except possibly inflate ego. And as an Econ major, I can tell you that me and my fellow soft major comrades already had inflated egos as is... it's sad really.

more than 6 years ago

Submissions

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Supreme Court Hears Texting Privacy Case

Bryan Gividen Bryan Gividen writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Bryan Gividen (739949) writes "The Supreme Court heard oral arguments in City of Chino v. Quon today. As Slashdot reported, the case is about a policy officer from Ontario, California who used his government issued pager to receive sexually explicit messages. The department pulled the records of his messages and the employee sued for a violation of his civil rights. A copy of the transcript is available from the Supreme Court's website."
Link to Original Source
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Linux Media Center Apps?

Bryan Gividen Bryan Gividen writes  |  about 5 years ago

Bryan Gividen (739949) writes "I am looking to turn my quickly-aging Dell Laptop into a Linux Media Center that I will hook up to a flatscreen TV. As a Linux novice, I use Ubuntu and am looking for good applications to make it a complete Media Center. Thing is, I don't know how complete, complete can be. I turn to Slashdot to guide me on everything I should install and any additional hardware I ought to look into."
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Alaskan Blob is an Algae Bloom

Bryan Gividen Bryan Gividen writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Bryan Gividen (739949) writes "Time.com is running a story on the previously unidentified blob floating off of the coast of Alaska. The article states that the blob is an algae bloom — far less sinister (or exciting) than any The Thing or The Blob comparison that was jokingly made. From the article: "'It's sort of like a swimming pool that hasn't been cleaned in a while.' The blob, Konar said, is a microalgae made up of 'billions and billions of individuals.'""
Link to Original Source
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Al Franken Questions Sotomayor on Net Neutrality

Bryan Gividen Bryan Gividen writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Bryan Gividen (739949) writes "As was reported this morning by Minnesota Public Radio, Senator Al Franken intended to question Supreme Sonya Sotomayor on the subject of net neutrality. Franken said, "I just want to make sure the Internet remains the Internet and that Internet service providers aren't being, in a sense, a gateway to the Internet and slowing down certain content and speeding up certain content." During the hearings, Franken specifically questioned Sotomayor about the Brand X decision and whether or not internet access was "compelling, over-riding 1st Amendment right." The LA Times has a brief blog post with the essence of Sotomayor's response: "Rights are not looked at by the courts as 'overriding.' Rights are rights and what the court looks at is how Congress balances those rights in a particular situation and then judges whether that balance is within constitutional boundaries.""
Link to Original Source
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McAfee Reports on Web's Most Dangerous Words

Bryan Gividen Bryan Gividen writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Bryan Gividen writes "McAfee has released a report on the most dangerous search terms for users. McAfee gathered info on popular search terms and then located which terms were most likely to produce malware related links. The most dangerous listed in the report is "free music downloads" with a average risk of 20.7%. Also considered dangerous are "lyrics," "game cheats," and "paris hilton." Sadly, "RIAA" is not found anywhere on the list."
Link to Original Source

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