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Interviews: Ask James Randi About Investigating the Truth

Telephone Sanitizer When is the Amazing Show Podcast Coming Back? (386 comments)

When is the Amazing Show podcast Coming Back?

I love those stories and I KNOW you've got lots more to tell.

If you're not bringing back the podcast, I'd be very pleased to hear you on The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe again!

about a year and a half ago
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NY Couple On "Wanted" Poster For Filming Police

Telephone Sanitizer Re:Obviously, the police are doing something wrong (541 comments)

> To me, it sounds like there is no REASONABLE
> suspicion of criminal activity

A "reasonable and articulable suspicion" that the suspect is armed.

These stop-and-frisks are not Terry stops.

There is no basis for them under the law.

There are some law enforcement personnel who are allowed to do stops like this in the post-9/11 era... The Customs and Border Protection arm of the DHS.

about 2 years ago
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NY Couple On "Wanted" Poster For Filming Police

Telephone Sanitizer Re:Obviously, the police are doing something wrong (541 comments)

> Seriously, why would the police care if the police are
> doing nothing wrong?

Guilty conscience.

> Which brings me to a question: How is "stop and
> frisk" not a violation of rights? It seems to be
> CLEARLY a violation of the 4th and perhaps even
> the 5th.

I don't get it, either. It's so obvious a violation of due process and flagrant bigotry that it should never have been proposed. Yet, they're doing it; they've been doing it since at least 2004; they're amassing a database containing information on those people who have been subject to stop-and-frisk; they're using the database for racial profiling and harassment (some people have been stalked by the police, stopped and frisked dozens of times); and nobody is stopping them.

The NY ACLU is only suing them over the database. Not the practice.

The law spells out very specific circumstances for a stop and pat-down.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terry_stop

The police are ignoring the law.

This is the sort of thing that East coasters ridicule Arizona for, but it's going on right here.

A true WTF.

about 2 years ago
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iOS App Acoustically Measures Distances Up To 25 Meters

Telephone Sanitizer Gee! All you need is... (154 comments)

Gee! All you need is a 25 meter headphone cord for this to work.

Everyone has that!

more than 2 years ago
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New Nintendo HD Console Rumors Abound

Telephone Sanitizer Re:Game Saves and... (154 comments)

> Owning Angry Birds and Fruit Ninja does not make you a gamer, GTFO.

Some people would say that owning a Wii doesn't make you a gamer.

iOS has Final Fantasy IV, Eternal Legacy, Infinity Blade, Rage HD, Sonic, Worms, Tiger Woods, Madden and now World of Goo so I'll be busy for quite awhile playing my non-console games. ...And I can use an iPhone or iPad to securely tunnel into my home network to run or stream almost anything on my PC.

Oh, well. Guess I'm not a "gamer" anymore. For some silly reason I feel no sense of loss.

more than 3 years ago
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Why Mac OS X Is Unsuitable For Web Development

Telephone Sanitizer Re: A-holes with mod points... (831 comments)

A-holes with mod points vex me.

There's no reason to have modded that post down other than prejudice against Macs and against the people who are honest enough to point out their benefits.

more than 3 years ago
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Why Mac OS X Is Unsuitable For Web Development

Telephone Sanitizer Re:I don't get why... (831 comments)

Apple gives you loads of options.

Absolutely. They're famous for it. Apple's all about choice.

In this case, yes they are.

It's very easy to run Windows or Linux or Unix or all of the above on a Mac along with Mac OS X.

more than 3 years ago
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Why Mac OS X Is Unsuitable For Web Development

Telephone Sanitizer Re:I don't get why... (831 comments)

I don't get why he doesn't just install Linux on his Mac.

But at that point, what has using a Mac really gained you?

A Mac. A very fast and rugged laptop with a great screen that runs the Mac OS natively, elegantly combining Unix and a modern GUI. (And yes, it's a damned handsome-looking computer.)

Plus Linux. Almost any flavor you'd like. Plus Windows if you're so inclined.

Apple gives you loads of options.

more than 3 years ago
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Why Mac OS X Is Unsuitable For Web Development

Telephone Sanitizer I don't get why... (831 comments)

I don't get why he doesn't just install Linux on his Mac.

There are a half-dozen suitable virtualization packages that he could use and installing it as a dual-boot OS is trivial.

He can get the best of both worlds with almost no effort.

Why don't people do a little research before posting anti-Mac rants?

more than 3 years ago
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Texting On the Rise In the US

Telephone Sanitizer I don't believe those stats for a moment... (468 comments)

The average teen (even including teens without cell phones) sends and receives five times more text messages a day than a typical adult. A teen typically sends or receives 50 text messages a day, while the average adult sends or receives 10.

Pew really ought to try interviewing a few people outside of the urban DJ population.

more than 3 years ago
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Congressmen Send Letters, Hope For Net Neutrality Fades

Telephone Sanitizer Re:So, that's 74 democrats and 37 republicans who. (427 comments)

You do realize that ISPs are not and have never been common carriers, right?

The FCC proposal is to designate ISPs as common carriers which will subject them to net-neutrality regulation.

Technically, ISPs should already be common carriers under the definition in the 1996 Telecom Act, which applies to all persons who engage in "interstate or foreign communication by wire or radio or in interstate or foreign radio transmission of energy..."

It's just that the FCC has been treating them as "information service providers" so now the FCC will have to make a finding that they are, in fact, common carriers and then will make rules governing them.

There's a whole lot of paperwork and public hearings involved, but it's entirely within their authority so any opposition from congress will either have to involve passing a law that changes that authority or (as was previously mentioned) coercing the FCC chair by screwing with his budget.

more than 4 years ago
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Congressmen Send Letters, Hope For Net Neutrality Fades

Telephone Sanitizer So, that's 74 democrats and 37 republicans who... (427 comments)

So, that's 74 democrats and 37 republicans who are either too stupid to know/bother-to-learn how common carrier laws work or who are wholly owned by communications monopolists.

Where's the list of assholes who signed those letters?

more than 4 years ago
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Microbial Life Found In Trinidadian Hydrocarbon Lake

Telephone Sanitizer Clearly, you've never been to Los Angeles (141 comments)

Scoffers have long derided as physically impossible passages in the Book of Revelation...

They just don't get around.

more than 4 years ago
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Court Rules Photo of Memorial Violates Copyright

Telephone Sanitizer Re:Sorry. Typo. (426 comments)

That should have started, "With $17 million in sales..."

more than 4 years ago
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Court Rules Photo of Memorial Violates Copyright

Telephone Sanitizer Statutory Damages... (426 comments)

17 million sales of $.37 stamps = 46 million or so stamps actually produced.

Statutory damages can run from $750-$30,000 per copy, assuming that it wasn't a willful infringement.

That's a minimum award of $34,500,000,000 (34.5 billion) and a maximum award of 1,380,000,000,000 (1.4 trillion). Plus attorney's fees, of course. Roughly last year's federal deficit not counting off-budget spending bills.

Would anyone here care to argue that statutory damages in the U.S. are not way out of proportion to the scope of the infringement?

more than 4 years ago
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Microsoft Wins Windows XP Downgrade Lawsuit

Telephone Sanitizer You sue the wrong party or pursue the wrong action (203 comments)

how do you not prove that they benefited by having OEMs sell the newer version of their software before allowing a downgrade path?

This is from the article:

Computer makers, not Microsoft, charged users the additional fees for downgrading a new PC from Vista to XP at the factory. However, Alvarado did not name Lenovo Group Ltd. in her lawsuit.

She sued MS for a practice of the OEM. Wrong defendant.

It's possible that she could have shown vertical market manipulation, but that might not have been relevant. Such practices might give rise to a federal antitrust suit, but she brought a state unfair practices action.

I'm no expert in the laws of Washington state, but from the article it appears that among other things she had to show that she did not receive value for her money and she failed to do so.

more than 4 years ago
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The Sad History and (Possibly) Bright Future of TiVo

Telephone Sanitizer Unlike the TiVo, my PVR doesn't spy on me... (490 comments)

My LiteOn PVR has a simple timer for recording like a VCR.

It has user-replaceable parts.

It doesn't require a paid subscription.

LiteOn doesn't sell records of my viewing habits.

It hasn't got a partition allocated for ads.

It doesn't display ad-banners when I pause or fast forward.

It has editing features.

It has a built-in DVD burner.

Yeah, TiVo offers a few neat features, but I'd have to give up a lot of utility and a great deal of privacy to get them. F-k that. My next PVR will be a computer with a Hauppauge tuner.

more than 4 years ago

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