US Supreme Court Invalidates Patent For Being Software Patent
The Supreme Court has held that "abstract ideas" can't be patented, but then has deliberately refrained from defining what an "abstract idea" is!
In the latest Alice decision, they write: "In any event, we need not labor to delimit the precisecontours of the “abstract ideas” category in this case. It is enough to recognize that there is no meaningful distinction between the concept of risk hedging in Bilski and the concept of intermediated settlement at issue here. Both are squarely within the realm of “abstract ideas” as we have used that term."
So you can't have "X", where "X" is undefined.
EU Court of Justice Paves Way For "Right To Be Forgotten" Online
It seems to me as if Google and other search companies can simply treat this right of privacy as simply being another type of take down request. An alternative way of looking at this is that an individual has a sort of "copyright" privilege over certain aspects of their private history.
Russia Wants To Establish a Permanent Moon Base
1: First infiltrate with masked astronauts without insignia.
2: Build government offices, and seize them.
3: Have popular vote
South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution From Standards
There are other theories that should be taught as well, such as the round earth theory, the theory that we exist outside of "the matrix", and indeed the theory that god did not create us a tenth of a second ago.
NASA Visualizes Asteroid Grab Mission
Mounting a robotic arm and small reentry capsule on the asteroid transfer vehicle could do the same mission. I like space travel, but the main thing this video showed me is that the politics are making NASA propose dumb ideas. NASA is burdened with the politically mandated "Senate Launch System" and the apparently unkillable Orion capsule, but insufficient funds for anything else. So here we are. Personally I would kill the SLS and Orion, subcontract manned work to SpaceX, and use the funds for advanced space-related R&D.
Xerox Confirms To David Kriesel Number Mangling Occuring On Factory Settings
At the federal level, our entire legal system is based on the concept that a machine copy of a document is as good as the original. In addition to all the other problems pointed out by other readers -- engineering errors, medical errors, financial errors, this type of error also greatly harms our legal system as well. A problem since the legal system is essentially the operating system for our society. I don't see how Xerox is going to survive the wave of lawsuits that is going to follow. They need to immediately warn everyone to stop using their systems, and then recall all affected units. Going forward, I suspect that the name "Xerox" will now mean: "to mangle or randomly distort".
Labor Dept. Wanted $1M For E-mail Addresses of Political Appointees
I'm shocked that top government officials are using secret government email addresses. We should insist that they turn over every email address so that they all have to waste hours each day deleting spam and irrelevant stuff like the rest of us!
Writer Jack Vance Dead At 96
I have been reading Jack Vance since I was about 11, many years ago. I knew that he was in his mid 90's and blind, and I never expected him to write anything again. However when I was looking at his works on Amazon a few weeks back, I saw that last year, at the age of 95, he was still in good enough shape to have written (or at least dictated) a biography called "This Is Me, Jack Vance! Or More Properly, This Is I".
So, thinking that this would be a good way to show my appreciation for all the fun his works had given me, I purchased it. Now I am glad that I did. Hope that some other fans also did the same! Not a bad way to go, hearing about your latest Amazon sales figures for work that you published at the age of 95.
A Computer-based Smart Rifle With Incredible Accuracy, Now On Sale
This gun is a terrorist's dream! The problems here are so obvious that hopefully this will be banned quickly.
Ask Slashdot: How Do You Sell an Algorithm To Venture Capitalists?
Your discussion should mention that it is patent pending. Otherwise they will probably not be interested.
2012 Set Record For Most Expensive Gas In US
Is it just me, or has anyone else noticed that the price of gas is down by nearly $1.00 a gallon since the election. Duh...which party generally controls gas prices?
Should Inventions Be Automatically Owned By Your Employer?
One of the reason why California has so many startups is that California State law clearly states that work done by an employee for the employee's own time and business interests belongs to the employee. It is very clear that the author of this article has no experience with startups.
If the default "inventions belong to the employer" rule was in effect everywhere, then the net effect would be to lock up employee ideas with little actual benefit to the employer. This is because most big companies are not very innovative, and thus fail to exploit most employee inventions. Most of the modern world as we know it would never have happened.
Dangerous and bad idea. I hope that the article remains forever ignored after this.
World of Warcraft Character Becomes Campaign Issue
...But the sword was considered to be too powerful for anyone to possess, so it was removed from the game and stored on a one gig flash drive. But it was foretold that one day players who could wield the sword might reveal themselves...
Why Apple Replaced iOS Maps
In retrospect, Apple should have kept Google maps in iOS for another year, and rolled out iOS maps first as an app. That way they would have had time to debug, and get a more graceful market introduction. I suspect that the problem is that Apple did not do enough iOS maps testing in advance, and was blindsided by all of the post-launch problems. Given that this is a safety issue, this is actually a pretty big fail.
Polish Researcher: Oracle Knew For Months About Java Zero-Day
The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) requires Java in order for outside users (such as patent agents and attorneys) to access their files on the USPTO servers. They have been warning for months that their systems are not compatible with Java 7, and only work with earlier versions of Java.
This is a big pain, since it forces you to keep your entire system at Java 6.X. Earlier I thought that this delay was mere bureaucratic foot dragging. Now I'm thinking that perhaps they had a "heads up" warning.
Why Mars Is Not the Limit For Human Space Flight
Mercury, not impossible to land on in certain regions -- Venus unlikely due to extreme heat and pressure, Mars a given, Jupiter no solid surface, Saturn no solid surface, Uranus no solid surface, Neptune no solid surface, Pluto -- not a planet.
So technically, assuming that no one wants to go to Mercury for some reason (unlikely), then outside of Mars, there are no other "planets" nearby anyway. If we call planets around other stars by a different name, and again assuming that Mercury is just to uninteresting to visit, then he might be right. Of course this still leaves lots of other real estate out there to visit.
Korean Artist's Intentionally Useless Satellite To Launch This December
The Russians had this idea first!
Ask Slashdot: Storing Items In a Sealed Chest For 25 Years?
From personal experience, I can vouch that Apple II floppy disks hold up over 25 years!
Analyzing Tweets To Identify Psychopaths
Oh great, after years of grammar in er, grammar school, now I'll have to unlearn ending sentences with a period
Copyrights To Reach Deep Space
The aliens are probably just trying to avoid lawsuits by keeping their existence secret while they quietly download our valuable copyright material. However we Earth people are already implementing the perfect defense. Here all we have to do is to keep continuing our present policy of extending copyright terms every time "Mickey Mouse" is in danger of falling into the public domain. We keep doing this until we perfect our faster than life drive..
So you thought you could escape eh Zog? That's $150,000 per infringed song.
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