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Comments

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Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

Spazmania Re:Is this real? (471 comments)

The USG has many secrets. No laws are among them. The occasional secret executive orders tend to run intro trouble when they run afoul of the commercial sector. Presidents get spanked.

2 hours ago
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Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

Spazmania Re:So then they get another warrant ... (471 comments)

Then you hire a lawyer because no court in the U.S. has the authority to order a specific change to a product. The most they can do is declare a product to be unlawful as shipped, and that is done very publicly.

yesterday
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Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

Spazmania Re:Is this real? (471 comments)

Key escrow laws have been attempted before. And failed.

yesterday
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Researcher Fired At NSF After Government Questions Her Role As 1980s Activist

Spazmania Re:Don't lie (499 comments)

Of course that's not expected of you. But you know, TV notwithstanding it's actually kind of hard to come on U.S. soil and take hostages. So it's only a problem if something makes you unusually susceptible to blackmail.

Perhaps more importantly, Uncle Sam has to be able to trust that as soon as you're out of the way of imminent harm, your next call will be to him ready to assist in catching the bad guys. No matter what you did in the moment.

If your behavior suggests you'll keep quiet, keep your head down and hope nobody discovers you were blackmailed then you're most emphatically unclearable. Know what's worse than a lost secret? A secret you mistakenly think is still secret.

2 days ago
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Researcher Fired At NSF After Government Questions Her Role As 1980s Activist

Spazmania Re:Don't lie (499 comments)

Policians aren't employed, they're elected. A surprising (or maybe not so surprising) number of them can't get security clearances and, as a result, don't have access to U.S. secrets.

2 days ago
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Researcher Fired At NSF After Government Questions Her Role As 1980s Activist

Spazmania Don't lie (499 comments)

Just so.

Look, basically three things get you into trouble during a government background check:

1. You *currently* participate in an organization trying to harm the United States Government.

2. Anything about yourself or your family life leaves you vulnerable to blackmail.

3. You conceal relevant truth, lie, or exhibit a pattern of deceit and/or theft.

Pretty much nothing else disqualifies you for work for Uncle Sam. You can even get a security clearance.

So, DON'T LIE. Err on the side of telling the interviewer more than he asked. Especially if it's embarrassing. An open book is easy to read and it's incredibly hard to blackmail someone who is never too embarrassed to seek the local security officers' help.

about a week ago
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Idiot web designers design website with "autorefresh" and bug flash ads

Spazmania Flash (1 comments)

In related news, idiot web users actually have Flash installed in their primary web browser that they use for general purpose tasks like reading slashdot. Seriously dude, get rid of it. Keep a secondary browser around for the very few sites where you actually *want* to see Flash.

about a week ago
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DMCA Claim Over GPL Non-Compliance Shuts Off Minecraft Plug-Ins

Spazmania Re:Short version (354 comments)

Wolfe makes a claim that the decompiled/deobfuscated Minecraft source code is not the code's "most preferred form" and thus does not count as source code under the GPL. But that claim doesn't hold water. Licensing that particular source code under the GPL is authorized by the software's owner, and no more preferred form of the source code is ever used with Bukkit. As importantly, Wolfe did not find that version of the source code objectionable at the time he offered his code for inclusion in Bukkit.

The GPL does not entitle you to all of my source code... just the source the code I choose to include in the version of the product that's under the GPL. Which has been provided.

about a week ago
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DMCA Claim Over GPL Non-Compliance Shuts Off Minecraft Plug-Ins

Spazmania Short version (354 comments)

Short version: Some dude made a false DMCA claim. Threw in "GPL" to try for sympathy. Some other dudes are scared about it instead of simply telling him to take a long walk off a short pier.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: What To Do About Repeated Internet Overbilling?

Spazmania Re:court (355 comments)

Beware that freezing or seizing assets as a result of a small claims judgement is unlikely to work out for you. I worked for a company in which the gruddy lunchroom microwave was "frozen" for 6 months as collatoral for a $150 judgement we were fighting. Basically the police show up, advise that they're required to freeze assets worth $X and then ask your help to determine which assets add up. They slap on an orange sticket and then go away.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: What To Do About Repeated Internet Overbilling?

Spazmania Re:court (355 comments)

Yes, exactly. The next court up is still a court in your state and they have to actually have grounds for an appeal (an error of law by the judge, not an error of fact. They gave up challenging any error of fact by failing to show up.) They can't even argue venue -- removing it to federal court requires a case whose damages are generally in excess of what the small claims court awards.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: What To Do About Repeated Internet Overbilling?

Spazmania Re:court (355 comments)

Washington Gas is neither a tiny company nor in the boonies. And AT&T often doesn't have a local lawyer with offices across the street from your county's small claims court.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: What To Do About Repeated Internet Overbilling?

Spazmania Re:court (355 comments)

They also (and this is important) have to show up in court to defend themselves.

I had billing trouble with the local natural gas company. The billing department took a similarly hard-line stance about my complaint. A year and a half later as I refused to pay, they escalated the matter to a lawyer.

It took one 5-minute conversation with their lawyer and the matter was resolved. Because I was right? No. Because it was cheaper to let me have my way than go to court, win or lose.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Spazmania Re:Pick a different job. (548 comments)

I'm not a fan of rules, of someone telling me how to do my job. Not a fan when the boss tries to do it. Even less a fan when the local 409 tries.to do it.

Programming is a creative endeavor. If I'm not free to create then its just another suck job. And life's to short to spend it working a suck job.

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Spazmania Re:Pick a different job. (548 comments)

So the deathmarch would be acceptable if the boss further cut the quality control work in order to deliver on time? Really? 'Cause unions don't demand schedule changes, they only demand that workers get paid. And the kind of boss that requires a deathmarch places a priority on his uneducated concept of "good enough."

Seriously, if that's acceptable to you I don't want you on my team or anywhere near my code. At any salary.

Snowden and Manning are heroes.

Manning is a vile, conscienceless poor excuse for a human being who thinks the world owes him something. The patriotism in Snowden's behavior is at least debatable but Manning? The guy/gal whose response to a bad month was to indescriminately dump every secret he could get his hands on? What's wrong with you?

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Spazmania Re:C++ is not the language you start with (548 comments)

I disagree. Learn how to program in a well structured manner that other programmers have some hope of following when they read your code. THEN learn how to juggle memory while programming in a structured manner.

If you haven't written code in C and assembly, you're not yet a computer scientist. But don't start there! Learn addition and subtraction before you learn algebra and learn Java or another learning language before you learn C.

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Spazmania Re:Pick a different job. (548 comments)

I'm 41. I started my own software consulting business this year. I had plenty of job offers. I even interviewed at Google a couple of times. But I wanted to do my own thing. And I'm doing quite well at it.

If your programming career was over at 40, what did you do that caused you to miss while I kept on hitting?

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Spazmania Re:Pick a different job. (548 comments)

programmers aren't smart enough to unionize

What would a union require of management that would make an unacceptable programming job acceptable?

Would you enjoy the work if only the boss didn't demand you work Saturdays? You would not.

Would the union be able to get rid of the office fool who screws up your otherwise beautiful code while convincing the boss its your fault? It would not. That's not what unions do.

Would you be paid more? Programmers who are any good are in high demand. If your boss isn't paying you fairly, find the next job. If no one is willing to pay you more despite the high demand for talented programmers and you're not willing to start your own business and take on the risks yourself then you're already paid what's fair for your level of talent and the level of risk you're willing to accept.

Unions are for folks whose labor is trivially replaceable. Work that most anybody can be "trained" to do. Programmers are artists. Instinct is not trainable and talented programmers are not easy to hire. Managers who think otherwise don't last long as managers of software development projects.

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Spazmania Re:C++ is not the language you start with (548 comments)

Python is a terrible choice for learning. C++ is not a great choice either. You want a learning language to be highly structured so that you're pushed away from sloppy programming practices that less structured languages allow.

Pascal was a good choice of learning language. Now that OOP has proven out, Java is a good choice. Stay away from the rest until you're competent in one of those two. Like Picasso said: Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.

about a month ago
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Larry Rosen: A Case Study In Understanding (and Enforcing) the GPL

Spazmania Re:What if it were Microsoft code (191 comments)

AFAIK, torrent clients don't keep a log of who they transferred parts of the file to.

If the pirate sold your software (directly or as part of a derivative work) then it had monetary value to him. There are a couple other ways to calculate it as well. Basically, plaintiff and defendant both produce analyses of how much of the defendant's software was actually the offending work and the judge either picks the one which makes the most sense or uses parts of each to produce his own analysis. Both sides have to be careful here to maximize their respective benefit without crossing the line to unreasonable since the judge will discard any analysis he deems unreasonable. Apply that formula times the defendant's gross revenue for the software. If the infringement is willful (defendant knew up front he was infringing and did it anyway), the judge then triples it.

about a month ago

Submissions

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The Twilight copyright saga

Spazmania Spazmania writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Spazmania (174582) writes "When it's not breaking box office records, Summit Entertainment, the studio that made the Twilight series, is doing its best to make sure that if you want to see a vampire brooding, you do it through Summit. The company seems to be lobbing lawsuits at pretty much anyone who uses Twilight's name or images without its permission."
Link to Original Source
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Second Life affair ends in divorce

Spazmania Spazmania writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Spazmania (174582) writes "A British couple who married in a lavish Second Life wedding ceremony are to divorce after one of them had an alleged "affair" in the online world. Amy Taylor, 28, said she had caught husband David Pollard, 40, having sex with an animated woman. Taylor is now in a new relationship with a man she met in the online roleplaying game World of Warcraft."
Link to Original Source

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