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Federal Government Removes 7 Americans From No-Fly List

Mitreya Re:"Until now"? (124 comments)

Are there other lawsuits pending? Is there something of a 'proper channels' method to appealing, and how many cases have been submitted to that?

I am quite sure there isn't such channel
I think the ones suing have some accidental way of proving that they are, in fact, on the no-fly list. I don't believe there is a channel to confirm if you are on the no-fly list. Very Kafkaesque indeed.

about two weeks ago

School Installs Biometric Fingerprint System For Cafeteria

Mitreya Re:Easy up now (231 comments)

Secondly, the biometrics are just an additional method of payment, it's entirely optional. No one's stopping you from paying in cash.

Oh, yes, because optional things never become mandatory. Only 10 years ago, the EZ-pass highway electronic payment system was optional. It even offered a discount (initially).

Now, there are several bridges where cash payment has been eliminated altogether. And many, many locations where the only available cash lane requires extra 15 minutes of my time.

I am talking about US, but I am sure such "optional" feature creep is an international thing.

about a month ago

Verizon Pays $7.4 Million To Settle FCC Privacy Investigation

Mitreya Re:That'll teach them (50 comments)

How fast do you suppose Verizon wireless makes 7.4 million? 3 hours? 4?

Also, how much compensation did the affected customers receive?
Even if the punishment were painful, why does FCC get all of it?

Verizon has agreed to notify customers of their opt-out rights on every bill for the next three years.

Oh, well, never mind. I guess customers got something out of this settlement after all. And in the fourth year, Verizon doesn't even have to notify them about their opt-out rights?

about 2 months ago

F-Secure: Xiaomi Smartphones Do Secretly Steal Your Data

Mitreya Normal now (164 comments)

Xiaomi smartphones do in fact upload user data without their permission/knowledge

Considering that half the apps out there (and I mean benign/legitimate apps!) seem to upload user data without user's knowledge, that is not so shocking. Once you start using your phone, several apps will start siphoning your data.

Recent "simplification" of Android Google-store permissions means that I don't even know how much of a permission I am giving to a new app.

about 2 months ago

Google Spots Explicit Images of a Child In Man's Email, Tips Off Police

Mitreya Re:Good riddance (790 comments)

They have an obligation to report child porn if they find it, but they don't have an obligation to look.

Actually, naive me was thinking that they have an obligation NOT TO LOOK.
I also have a storage room rental -- does that mean the owner is allowed to do random checks for stolen goods? Just in case?

about 3 months ago

NYC Loses Appeal To Ban Large Sugary Drinks

Mitreya Re:Let them drink! (532 comments)

people who have bad eating habits

None of this precludes bad eating habits though. It just makes it more expensive or cumbersome (nor does it help people who drink several medium drinks throughout the day). So sounds like pointless grandstanding

Education is the way to help. I think the rules requiring posting calories on the menu had done a lot more to improve health than any such stupid ban. And no one contested that in court.

You can't really force people to make healthy choices by legislation. Information/labeling helps though.

about 4 months ago

Seattle Gets Takeout By Amazon

Mitreya What is the value? (61 comments)

Amazon has their value mostly in guaranteed/fast/free shipping and low prices. How are they going to break into this market?

about 4 months ago

High Frequency Trading and Finance's Race To Irrelevance

Mitreya Re:Happened before, will happen again (382 comments)

Dutch tulip panic in the 1700's ... The world moves on and financiers quickly explore new avenues, leaving the old behind

Ah, but did the people who lost on tulip investment get bailed out back then? Seems like the new way is to save the financial institutions because their collapse would be too damaging to the world.

about 5 months ago

New Federal Database Will Track Americans' Credit Ratings, Other Financial Info

Mitreya Re:Mortgages are public records (294 comments)

Mortgages are public records. State and local governments already have all that data. Anyone can look it up.

I don't think mortgages are public record. Sales of houses and their prices are public record, but that is a far cry from knowing your actual mortgage (maybe you paid cash?)

There's a lot of funny stuff going on in the foreclosure area, but nobody has been analysing that as a "big data" problem.

Yes, "big data in a cloud with web 2.0" is the solution. It is reasonably known what "funny stuff" goes on, but instead of cracking down on these practices, we are going to do reports. Reports are needed to identify the problem when it is a mystery.

about 5 months ago

Oregon vs. Oracle: the Battle of Blame Heats Up

Mitreya I like the non-commital announcement (83 comments)

She did not commit to filing suit, but said, "I share your determination to recover every dollar to which Oregon is entitled."

You can say a lot of words without promising anything. I particularly like "recover every dollar to which Oregon is entitled". It could be $0 or $1 or $100M, because she didn't mention how much that is in her opinion.

about 5 months ago

Declining LG's New Ad-friendly Privacy Policy Removes Features From Smart TVs

Mitreya Nope. (221 comments)

Does a manufacturer have the right to "brick" certain integral services just because the end user doesn't feel comfortable sharing a bunch of info with LG and other, unnamed third parties?

Of course they don't.
I am sure that just in 3-4 years, after a lawsuit, affected customers will be able to get a $7.50 credit good towards purchase of a new LG TV.

about 5 months ago

California Bill Would Safeguard Consumers' Rights To Criticize Firms Online

Mitreya Re:Not First Amendment (160 comments)

You CAN be sued for any ACTUAL damages DIRECTLY related to your speech, IF it was defamatory / libelous.

Not disagreeing with you...
However, you can be SUCCESSFULLY sued for actual damages, blah blah. Without that, you can STILL be sued albeit unsuccessfully. An eventually-lost lawsuit would still cost you a lot of money to defend yourself. Maybe more money than whatever damages you are accused of.

about 5 months ago

Cisco Complains To Obama About NSA Adding Spyware To Routers

Mitreya Re:Don't complain. Sue. (297 comments)

Don't complain. Sue.

"State secrets".
Allowing the lawsuit to proceed will expose state secrets and undermine the all-important War on Terror.
Next suggestion?

about 5 months ago

Comcast Predicts Usage Cap Within 5 Years

Mitreya Awesome! (475 comments)

The cap would start at 300 GB and cost the customer subscriber an extra 10 USD for 50 GB.

And I bet that the cap would proceed to move down to 250 GB and so on. USA is the only country where internet access quality is actually moving in reverse.

about 5 months ago

Sony Warns Demand For Blu-Ray Diminishing Faster Than Expected

Mitreya Re:Contracting? (477 comments)

Was it even ever popular? I never had a Blu-Ray player in my house

One word: Playstation3

I never looked to buy a Blue-Ray, but I do have a PlayStation in my house.

about 6 months ago

Kerry Says US Is On the "Right Side of History" When It Comes To Online Freedom

Mitreya Re:Sure, I guess I agree (261 comments)

If by "right side" he means leaning towards totalitarianism and increasingly corporatist/fascist views towards online freedoms

He says so right there:

He added: 'This debate is about two very different visions: one vision that respects freedom and another that denies it.

I just don't know what makes him think that the current administration is on the "respect freedom" side of things.

about 6 months ago

Help EFF Test a New Tool To Stop Creepy Online Tracking

Mitreya Re:What's the difference (219 comments)

How's this different or better than adblock / ghostery / flashblock / noscript / do not accept third party cookies ?

Maybe it can replace 2+ of them? That would be nice. Installing 4-5 tools for one task is a pain

Also, NoScript specifically breaks 3 out of 4 websites until you figure out which half-a-dozen domains must execute JavaScript for each damn website. I remember how had a most fraudulent looking domain in order to let me login to my checking account.

about 6 months ago

New White House Petition For Net Neutrality

Mitreya Re:Oh, yes! (248 comments)

the Government will listen to a petition of the people posted on a website.

It will.
And then they will ask the head of FCC to explain why his decision is obviously a good thing (just like they have with ban-TSA White House petition).

about 6 months ago

California Utility May Replace IT Workers with H-1B Workers

Mitreya Re:Not H1-Bs, offshore workers. (220 comments)

It would be illegal for them to fire everyone then hire H1-Bs, and even if the off-shore companies place people that all happen to be H1-B, lawsuits will follow. How can the consulting company say they couldn't find competent employees when they know a bunch that got laid-off?

The article basically claims that with employees making 60K+, the rule of "cannot find competent employees" does not apply to H1-B, so they should be ok. Does anyone know more about this loophole that the article is talking about?

about 6 months ago


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