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IRS Recycled Lerner Hard Drive

LaughingVulcan Re:Fox News? (682 comments)

Or Leahy, Democrat from Vermont (since Hatch is a Repub): "You can't erase e-mails, not today, They've gone through too many servers. They can't say they've been lost. That's like saying, 'The dog ate my homework.' They're there, They know they're there, and we'll subpoena them, if necessary, and we'll have them."

Which proves exactly how out of touch our legislators are in technical understanding, and once again makes it rather obvious that we have the government we deserve. (Also, how normative the surveillance culture has become that *anyone* should think data should be stored forever, for all time, no matter what it is.)

about 3 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Communication With Locked-in Syndrome Patient?

LaughingVulcan Re:For go's sake (552 comments)

What kind of human being are YOU, who can't realize that a communicative patient should get to decide that HERSELF?

about 4 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Communication With Locked-in Syndrome Patient?

LaughingVulcan Question answer is yes, but not from /. (552 comments)

The usual "This is not medical advice" disclaimer applies to the below.

Yes, there are methods of communication involving computers and gaze recognition. (For example: or ). I read in ye olde days there were analog 'gaze boards', and maybe your sister-in-law can develop codes (eyes left yes, lip up no...) But you also need to have conversations with her physicians - maybe they want her working / tiring by blinking for a therapeutic or rehabilitation reason... And the care team for your sister-in-law should be better in touch with what's out there as resources for her and be able to discuss that with you, or you should look into changing that team. (Moderated by knowing the care team will want to get some data over time to determine the best course of action to take - they may need to wait long enough to get data before they'll make a recommendation.)

In any event, deep sympathy for you, your wife, and family!

about 4 months ago

NSA Surveillance Reform Bill Passes House 303 Votes To 121

LaughingVulcan Re:Told you that you were serfs (208 comments)

You flirt dangerously with TL:DR and lack of paragraphs. But I got through anyway. In rebuttal:

1) The farmhands - fewer than ever and fewer still - don't have jack squat. But I never met a farm owner who didn't buy all new vehicles (pickup and car) every three years or more often.

2) Farmhands often live in squalid conditions. But farm owners usually have the finest homes in the county aside from the few physicians and lawyers who still practice and live rurally.

3) Horses also die unexpectedly, break legs / etc., can be injured during the reproduction process, and have far less power than tractors of fifty years ago. If horses were truly superior to power in terms of productivity, they'd still be in use today. Duh. And if modern computerized tractors weren't more efficient and profit-making than tractors of fifty years ago, they'd never be bought. While farmers must have new personal vehicles, most I've known in life will never dispose of equipment unless swapping makes them more money.

4) It is common sense that, were farmers to truly co-op and fight, food prices would go more to the farmer. But they don't.

5) Yes, deglobalization is a nice thought. Go for it. But, when nobody buys your bug-ridden crop because the processors can get healthier meat shipped from over a border cheaper than you can produce it... Good luck.

6) Yes, farmers and hands do work long and laborious hours. So do many others, and I feel much more for the fast food fry cook than the average farmer or hand. Just sayin'

about 4 months ago

Curiosity Rover May Have Brought Dozens of Microbes To Mars

LaughingVulcan Seed your planet! (97 comments)

SEED IT!!!!!!!

about 4 months ago

Unlock Your Android Phone With Open Source Wearable NFC

LaughingVulcan Re:Excelent (81 comments)

Yep, instead of a $10 wrench a $5 knife will now do the trick. That's progress!

about 4 months ago

Mathematical Model Suggests That Human Consciousness Is Noncomputable

LaughingVulcan Re:Bad syllogism (426 comments)

Sorry, I am a computer. "Find the flaw in this argument," does not compute. I guess I will never be a real boy.

about 4 months ago

Feds Issue Emergency Order On Crude Oil Trains

LaughingVulcan Wow! What a great fix! (211 comments)

So EMA will know it's an oil explosion and not the start of WW III. That sure fixes the problem!!! In no way, shape, or form, was this immediate knee-jerk feel-good media-soundbyte produced spin control that actually does nothing in terms of real safety. Gosh, just love it when politics takes precedence over real substance - reminds me of the final years of the Soviet Union.

about 4 months ago

Apple Can Extract Texts, Photos, Contacts From Locked iPhones

LaughingVulcan Re:News? (202 comments)

The news is the Apple has received enough LEA requests for information that they've put together guidelines as a pre-emptive against being bothered about things they can't do.

I suppose we could be heartened that it specifically states upon receiving a warrant thus-and-such are available? Until a three-letter agency gives them a Sekrit Not-A-Warrant Order requiring the information. And that, Government, is the whirlwind you reap when you play fast and loose with the Constitution - there should be no trust of you, ever.

about 4 months ago

NASA Honors William Shatner With Distinguished Public Service Medal

LaughingVulcan What about Nichelle Nichols? (111 comments)

Who, AFAIK and comparing their biographies, did far more for NASA recruitment?

about 5 months ago

To Save the Internet We Need To Own the Means of Distribution

LaughingVulcan Re:I want that third alternative! (338 comments)

AC should be modded up, not on the validity of the article but for recognizing this is not a black and white situation. Internet access should be placed on par with phones and electicity: Privately owned but state regulated. (And yes, states don't do perfect jobs with those two industries but it is much preferable to the oligarchy now present.)

about 5 months ago

Scientists Give Praying Mantises Tiny 3D Glasses

LaughingVulcan But who's the designer? (55 comments)

Until we know who designed the glasses, there will be no telling just how popular they might become... If they can only capture 20% of the Mantis-3d-Glass market share, will they have failed?

about 5 months ago

Japanese and Swiss Watchmakers Scoff At Smartwatches

LaughingVulcan Forgotten one's history? (399 comments)

Because a smartwatch was already tried, the Fossil Abacus. I owned one, and while it was cool it does indeed get pretty tiring to make sure it was recharged every night. Things may indeed change, but wristwatch companies have far more to fear from smartphones than smart watches.

about 5 months ago

New White House Petition For Net Neutrality

LaughingVulcan Re:Oh, yes! (248 comments)

Sad that parent was modded Funny and not "Painfully but Ironically True." We the People does nothing for change, it is simply an opiate for those pissed off. If I'm wrong (and I'd like to be,) name one thing that Obama has actually changed because of a petition there.

about 5 months ago

Expert Warns: Civilian World Not Ready For Massive EMP-Caused Blackout

LaughingVulcan Re:Actual thought process (271 comments)

But if you were thinking that Obama was going to be blamed for the existence of a problem that has been around since 1945 you might have a distorted view of Fox News, and are confusing their opinion segments with the news segments.

They have news segments? Every time I've watched it's been a panel of pundits yacking... Praytell when do they actually report only news and not urinate all over it with their opinions?

about 5 months ago

Apache OpenOffice Reaches 100 Million Downloads. Now What?

LaughingVulcan I wonder how much damage... (285 comments)

...would be done to the U.S. economy by having the U.S. Federal Government migrate away from Microsoft to an open-source solution.

(And please, not a Microsoft shill or apologist here - I use OpenOffice at home and enjoy it and wish I could implement it at work. I don't like the economy of the United States hinging on continued government spending, either. But OTOH, you can't tell me that ditching Microsoft wouldn't have some pretty serious economic consequences and we're in the mess we're in.)

about 5 months ago

Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

LaughingVulcan Just adopt the Leaf as our currency! (467 comments)

We can all be millionaires! (And spend several deciduous forests for one peanut.)

Thank you, Douglas Adams!

Seriously, why do a majority of people think each can live "the good life" and not have to do some kind of labor for a living?

about 5 months ago

FBI Drone Deployment Timeline

LaughingVulcan Re:So other than those ten (33 comments)

How many times do they do it a week without all that official authorization stuff?

If they use them in criminal investigations the usage eventually becomes part of the public record when entered into evidence. Using them for search and rescue ought to be non-controversial enough. "National Security" is of course the grey area, though there's a fair amount of overlap between National Security and criminal prosecutions, for offenses like espionage or terrorism, so a lot of that use would eventually make it into the public record as well.

While used in the context of how an investigation begins, it really applies to any investigation step which would otherwise be fruit of the poisonous tree.

And some thought that using military troops on the border just for support activities of law enforcement was a good thing that would have no other repercussions. A better question would be: Who actually OPERATED the drones, 'cause I doubt the FBI has a special drone-operating unit. (13 uses in 8 years?) Yet.

about 5 months ago

Student Records Kids Who Bully Him, Then Gets Threatened With Wiretapping Charge

LaughingVulcan Re:WTF?? (798 comments)

I don't understand how this is "wiretapping" - no *wires* were being tapped, this was a recording of a face to face conversation.

Good. That means you can never dial me up, as I doubt your phone has a dial.

You cannot mail me, because the post on the side of the road isn't there.

And you must be jobless since you'll never be able to punch the clock.

about 5 months ago

IRS Can Now Seize Your Tax Refund To Pay a Relative's Debt

LaughingVulcan Simple to Correct (632 comments)

If it is one sentence that was added. Write one sentence into whatever bill reinstating it. Easy, right politicians? Right? Hello? And also, force every bill to be created/amended in a Wiki system where edit histories are visible, so that we can clearly understood who it was that slipped the one sentence in.

about 5 months ago


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