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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:It was an almost impossible case to prosecute (1052 comments)

No, no you wouldn't. You would only know what the prosecution and defense could find and present. Nothing more, nothing less.

Which, at least, is an adversarial system.

Of course it's an adversarial system. It always has been, and always should be. There are two sides in a dispute. Each side is not impartial, the goal is to let each partial side make its case while an impartial third party (judge, jurors) decides which side has made its case the best.

... unlike the grand jury proceedings, in which just the prosecutor presents inculpatory evidence and asks for an indictment. Or at least, that's the normal system. Here, the prosecutor didn't even ask for charges, meaning you had no one who was adverse to the cop.

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:Moderate BS (1052 comments)

You're now claiming witnesses don't exist? After you started off claiming there were 7, six of whom were African-American? You can't even keep your own story straight.

I realize that English is not your native tongue, so I appreciate how much you're trying here. But we're talking about YOUR assertion that the documents in front of your eyes don't include the testimony of eye witnesses. Or have you finally got around to reading it, and you're changing your story, just like the debunked media-frenzy "witnesses" did?

Now you're lying about what I said, even though everyone can just scroll up and read it? Wow. Unbelievable. I never said that "the documents don't include the testimony of eye witnesses" and you know it, which is why you don't even use a quote here, even though Slashdot has a big ol' "Quote Parent" button. It's amazing.You actually think that you can get away with bullshiat like that?

What I actually said was that the documents don't include what you claimed, which was - and here I provide an exact quote, because I'm not a lying piece of shiat like you:

Multiple witnesses (including half a dozen African Americans who came forward on their own to the police, and weren't interested in media attention) corroborated all of this, including what happened next (Brown turns around and moves at Wilson, who fires a few times, winging Brown - Wilson STOPS shooting and again tells Brown to stop - Brown then charges at Wilson who shoots again until Brown stops).

Those are your words. And my words were:

You say I know where the testimony is and that I'm "pretending" that I can't find it? Bullshiat - you're the one who's claiming it exists. Cite some page numbers.

I never said that there were no eyewitnesses. I said that there aren't 7 of them saying what you claim they're saying. Instead, there are actually a bunch of eyewitnesses that say things very different from what you claim they said, including that Brown was surrendering. Heck, one eyewitness says that the cop shot him execution style in the head at point blank range. That's a far cry from what you're claiming.

Anyways, your misrepresentations of the witness testimony aside, you've now been caught in such a complete and obvious lie over just these last few posts that no one could possibly believe anything you write here, so I think we're done. Goodbye, hypocritical, lying troll.

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:Moderate BS (1052 comments)

Wow, you just keep on going with the whole feigned ignorance thing, don't you? The evidence presented to the grand jury could ONLY be released to the public through the piece-by-piece review of a judge (the same judge that sat the panel, not that you care, since the judge is fictional, right?).

Nice try moving the goalposts there, but everyone can read this thread and see that, no, we're not talking about whether or not a judge oversees the panel. You called the evidence that was shown to the jury "the judge's published material." That's incorrect: no judge ever had a hand in creating it.

Your supposed fundamental misunderstanding (again, I'm presuming that on this topic it's fake, and just as deliberate as your little bit of theater about non-existent witnesses)

You're now claiming witnesses don't exist? After you started off claiming there were 7, six of whom were African-American? You can't even keep your own story straight.

[blahblahblah]

Maybe if you spent less time ranting and more time citing page numbers in the testimony to support your accusations of lying, you'd have some credibility here. But as long as you keep responding to "where's the support for your claim" with "it's out there! Somewhere! Shut up! Liar!" people will keep considering you to be a hypocrite and a fool.

yesterday
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Two Google Engineers Say Renewables Can't Cure Climate Change

Theaetetus Misleading Summary (594 comments)

The summary is so off-base that it's in the "not even wrong" category:

Two Standford PhDs, Ross Koningstein and David Fork, worked for Google on the RE<C project to figure out how to make renewables cheaper than coal and solve climate change.

Yes, that's true.

After four years of study they gave up, determining "Renewable energy technologies simply won't work; we need a fundamentally different approach."

Well, yeah, that quote is in the article, but it's not in response to the question "can renewables be cheaper than coal".

As a result, is nuclear going to be acknowledged as the future of energy production?

No, because you're answering the wrong question.

Let's go back to the article:

At the start of REwith steady improvements to today’s renewable energy technologies, our society could stave off catastrophic climate change. We now know that to be a false hope—but that doesn’t mean the planet is doomed.

As we reflected on the project, we came to the conclusion that even if Google and others had led the way toward a wholesale adoption of renewable energy, that switch would not have resulted in significant reductions of carbon dioxide emissions. Trying to combat climate change exclusively with today’s renewable energy technologies simply won’t work; we need a fundamentally different approach.

There's the quote in the summary, and those bolded sentences are what it's referring to. Not "can renewables be cheaper", but "even if we switch to renewables, can we significantly reduce CO2". And from the sidebar with the two graphs:

Yet because CO2 lingers in the atmosphere for more than a century, reducing emissions means only that less gas is being added to the existing problem. Research by James Hansen shows that reducing global CO2 levels requires both a drastic cut in emissions and some way of pulling CO2 from the atmosphere and storing it.

While nuclear may be a fine technology, it doesn't "pull CO2 from the atmosphere and store it". So, no, Subby, nuclear is not the answer to the question they were asking either.

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:Moderate BS (1052 comments)

I looked through them and saw nothing to support those claims.

Which means you didn't even give the judge's published material a cursory glance.

No, frankly, I don't know how anyone could ever trust anything you say,

I'm not asking you to trust anything I say.

That's good, since, y'know, there was no judge involved. Apparently I've given the materials a much better glance than you have.

I suggesting that you know right where the testimony is, and the lengthy reports on the forensic evidence, and that you're pretending you can't find it, parse it, or incorporate those facts into your understanding of the situation. You can't be unable to do it, which means that either you're unwilling to do it, or you've got an agenda of some kind that calls for you to try to wish it all away.

And you're wrong. I'm suggesting, based on your incorrect assertion that a judge was involved in this, that you've never even looked at the materials and are just regurgitating what you (mis)heard at the press conference, and are now calling everyone disagreeing with you a liar.

You say I know where the testimony is and that I'm "pretending" that I can't find it? Bullshiat - you're the one who's claiming it exists. Cite some page numbers. Otherwise, you're no better than someone claiming they proved the existence of God while insisting that everyone else is lying about not being able to see the evidence (that you're unwilling to discuss).

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:Moderate BS (1052 comments)

It's a little hypocritical that you accuse me of an ad hominem, considering that I replied to your post repeatedly calling someone a liar based only on hearsay, no?

No, I called someone a liar because - despite amply available facts to the contrary - they're spreading false information, on purpose. You know, deliberate deception. Lying.

And your evidence for this is...?
I asked for that evidence, and you were unable to provide it and instead called me lazy and accused me of ad hominems. How do we know that you're not spreading false information on purpose? You know, deliberate deception. Lying.

And, it's also hypocritical that you call me lazy

Why? Here you are commenting on a matter for which all sorts of searchable, link-able documents have been provided, summarized, and repeated (in the sense of the germane details) for you to read. And yet you're pretending that you you're baffled about the availability of that information. You can't be that obtuse, and I was being generous calling you lazy - because you're acting like that information doesn't exist - why?

You made very specific and explicit claims about the documents. I looked through them and saw nothing to support those claims. So I asked you for support. You have now repeatedly failed to support your claims, and instead just pound the table with your name calling. Why? Since there are all sorts of searchable, link-able documents, why do you repeatedly decline to provide any specific citations that would support your claims? Is it because you know they don't exist? Is it that you hope to throw thousands of pages of documents at me, hoping that I won't look through them all, because you know that nowhere in those thousands of pages are support for what you're saying? If that's true, wouldn't that be "deliberate deception" or "lying"?

You make a claim; I ask for support; you start demanding to know why everyone doesn't immediately accept you at your word and how therefore everyone else must be liars and not you... And you think that that helps your credibility?

No, frankly, I don't know how anyone could ever trust anything you say, if simple questions asking you for citations are met with angry ranting and name calling.

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:Moderate BS (1052 comments)

Prosecutors can 'indict a ham sandwich' with a grand jury. If they didn't indict, it's because the prosecutor didn't want them to.

Regardless of how one feels about the outcome, this much is apparent. Normally, prosecutors go to a grand jury and ask for specific charges, and present only inculpatory evidence (i.e. evidence that points towards the likelihood that a crime was committed). The prosecutors are under no requirement to present exculpatory evidence (i.e. that points away from guilt), and can even present only witness testimony that supports the charges while suppressing witness testimony that undermines the charges. This is considered fine, because (i) grand jury indictments are a low bar, (ii) that exculpatory evidence will be presented at trial, and (iii) theoretically, a reasonable jury could find all of the exculpatory evidence non-credible and inculpatory evidence credible and vote to convict so there's no need to show the potentially non-credible exculpatory evidence to the grand jury when determining mere probable cause.

That's normally. Here, the prosecutors didn't ask for any charges, and simply put all of the various contradictory testimony before the grand jury. It's not surprising that they returned with no indictment.

You can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich, but you have to at least ask them to indict. Simply serving them lunch doesn't qualify.

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:Moderate BS (1052 comments)

Wow, are you lazy. Well, lazy about everything except ad hominem - the comfort zone for people who don't like facts.

It's a little hypocritical that you accuse me of an ad hominem, considering that I replied to your post repeatedly calling someone a liar based only on hearsay, no?

And, it's also hypocritical that you call me lazy when I ask you for citations of the very explicit claims you made - 7 witnesses, 6 of whom were African-American, all agreeing on a specific story - and you then link to... all the evidence, including the evidence which contradicts your claims.

Let's be clear here - it's not an ad hominem to point out that you're being a hypocrite, because you clearly are. It's also not an ad homimen to ask that you provide support for your claims before you call other people liars. It is an ad hominem to call someone lazy or say that they "don't like facts" when you haven't provided any such facts, simply to cover your own hypocrisy.

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:It was an almost impossible case to prosecute (1052 comments)

I think this whole thing is fucked up. I'm pretty sure we're on the same side here but your post seems to be looking at this from a technical point of view and I'd like to point out a flaw, from my perspective, in your argument. If there was no evidence against him, why waste the resources trying him? Someone breaks into your house and comes at you with a ninja sword. You yell for them to stop or you'll shoot but they don't and they come charging. You blow their head off. All of this was caught on your home security camera and you happily hand it over to the cops when they get there. They view it, show it to the DA, and they say "clearly self defense, no charges will be filed". If I get what you're saying, you think they should go ahead and drag you through the courts even though you know you're innocent and you'll win the case. I'd not want to waste my resources defending myself from an obviously frivolous case.

Actually, my post is looking at it from a political point of view. From a purely hypothetical standpoint, ignoring all of the context, you are correct - there's no point in pursuing charges when it's that slam dunk. But the thing is, there also wouldn't be rioting over something like that (excepting the fact that Ninja home invaders don't really inspire protests, of course). You could just provide your camera footage to the media, they play it on the news, protestors shrug and go back home. Here, dash cam or body cam or security camera footage was absent. Instead, there was witness testimony, some of it more credible, some less, with some very different stories.

Now, maybe you could say that there's a 1% chance of proving the cop guilty based on the various contradictory witness testimony, and that no reasonable prosecutor would waste the resources going after the accused on those grounds and that someone shouldn't have to waste their resources* defending themselves from such barely plausible charges, and generally I'd agree... But here, you've got (i) closed proceedings, (ii) no true adversarial proceeding to ensure that all of the evidence is heard, and (iii) a community rioting in protest. Going through with an open trial that the prosecutor knows they have almost no chance of winning still provides transparency and closure for the community. Is it a waste of resources to spend money on a trial that's going to be dismissed, if it saves millions in riot police and subsequent damages and cleanup? Focused purely on the trial, yes, but politically looking at the bigger picture, no.

*the police union would defend him anyway, so it's not like he'd be spending anything.

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:Moderate BS (1052 comments)

So I'm sure you have a citation to support at least 7 witness statements that say that, at least 6 of whom are African American?

The prosecution released all of that testimony, available for you to read. But to save you the trouble, it was summed up during the press conference, because it was very important, in context. But just for fun, consider reading it, just like all of the journalists who have already done so, and helpfully explained the same thing so that people like you can get their heads on straight.

Translation: "I don't actually have a citation for what I'm claiming, I'm just repeating what was summed up during the press conference and what I've read from some journalists."

No problem, Mr. Pot, I understand that you can't actually provide any citations. You shouldn't sling around accusations that someone is lying when you haven't read any of the testimony yourself and are just relying on hearsay from the authorities.

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:Moderate BS (1052 comments)

Why are you lying about this? What's your agenda that you are deliberately spreading false information?

Excuse me, Mr. Pot, if I may interrupt your rant at Mr. Kettle... You say:

Multiple witnesses (including half a dozen African Americans who came forward on their own to the police, and weren't interested in media attention) corroborated all of this, including what happened next (Brown turns around and moves at Wilson, who fires a few times, winging Brown - Wilson STOPS shooting and again tells Brown to stop - Brown then charges at Wilson who shoots again until Brown stops). There's blood on the street that shows Brown covered significant distance TOWARDS Wilson, just as described by those same witnesses.

... So I'm sure you have a citation to support at least 7 witness statements that say that, at least 6 of whom are African American?

No? Well, back to your rant:

... deliberately lying. Like you are, right now.... you are lying for some reason. Not quite sure what your actual purpose is in doing so. It's strange.

yesterday
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Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Theaetetus Re:It was an almost impossible case to prosecute (1052 comments)

If it went to trial, we *would* know all the facts.

No, no you wouldn't. You would only know what the prosecution and defense could find and present. Nothing more, nothing less.

Which, at least, is an adversarial system.

As it so happens, the DA promised to release all the evidence they have to the public shortly. When, how, and in what format I do not know, but nonetheless, that's what they intend to do according to their statement.

And we can believe that they (a) are going to actually release all the evidence, and (b) that they bothered looking for all the evidence, why exactly? There was no transparency to this, which is what a trial would have provided.

A grand jury doesn't determine guilt or innocence, it only decides whether a trial should happen.

Agreed. The reason for having one in the first place is to determine whether there is enough credible evidence and testimony to be worth a trial.

But, you've also heard the saying that a grand jury will indict a ham sandwich, right? They indict people all the time over illegally obtained evidence that is subsequently thrown out at trial, killing the case; over questionable evidence such as weighing the roots, dirt, and terra cotta pot in order to find that a pot operation was growing more than than the required amount to hit felony levels; over anonymous tips, etc. A grand jury indictment is a very low bar.

And even if there was absolutely no case, a trial still provides transparency, which grand jury proceedings do not. In a case like this, they should absolutely have issued an indictment and gone to trial, simply because the open proceedings would forestall rioting. Instead, you get something equivalent to the police saying "we've done an internal investigation and we found that we've done absolutely nothing wrong, so suck it."

yesterday
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Cops 101: NYC High School Teaches How To Behave During Stop-and-Frisk

Theaetetus Re:Wouldn't time be better spent... (474 comments)

Where exactly did I say anything about getting tough or macho?

Where exactly did I say anything about you allegedly saying something about "getting tough or macho"?

Let's roll the tape, Johnny:

"If your rights are violated you deal with it later"

What exactly do you gain by consenting to an illegal request of a power they do not have?

That wasn't in the post you're replying to. If the cops order you to do something, such as turn over your ID or give them your bag, you politely say "I do not consent to this, but I will not resist" and do as ordered.

With all due respect, you have a severe reading disorder. First, you think the GP poster was saying you "consent". When I corrected you on that, you then think I was saying you were talking about being "macho". In actuality, no one was ever talking about consenting, being macho, or doing anything else stupid.

2 days ago
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Interviews: Ask the Hampton Creek Team About the Science and Future of Food

Theaetetus Re:Just Mayo is DELICIOUS, too! (142 comments)

Here's the ingredients for Just Mayo. Pretty short list:

... - Pea protein...

If I want to make a quick tunafish sandwich - I use Just Mayo. It tastes way better than that shelf-stable stuff from Hellman's

So, you might say you love the pea-ness?

2 days ago
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Cops 101: NYC High School Teaches How To Behave During Stop-and-Frisk

Theaetetus Re:Wouldn't time be better spent... (474 comments)

"If your rights are violated you deal with it later"

What exactly do you gain by consenting to an illegal request of a power they do not have?

That wasn't in the post you're replying to. If the cops order you to do something, such as turn over your ID or give them your bag, you politely say "I do not consent to this, but I will not resist" and do as ordered. File your complaints and lawsuits later. You can't negotiate with the guy with the gun.

2 days ago
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Swedish Court Refuses To Revoke Julian Assange's Arrest Warrant

Theaetetus Re:Rape Apologetics Go Here (242 comments)

Re:Rape Apologetics Go Here Live down to expecations, Slashdot.

If allegedly lying about wearing a condom counts as rape after the fact and justifies extradition, then we should designate all women, who ever allegedly lied about not wearing a female condom, or who allegedly lied about being on birth control, as rapists as well. After all, it works both ways.

I guess we'll have to wait until a woman republishes embarrassing US State secrets for that to happen.

I don't think any woman in history has ever lied about not wearing a female condom... You've never actually seen a female condom, have you? Lying about wearing one would be like an amputee lying about having both legs.

5 days ago
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Swedish Court Refuses To Revoke Julian Assange's Arrest Warrant

Theaetetus Re:Rape Apologetics Go Here (242 comments)

This wasn't a rape, it was a CIA setup. Anyone remember Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the IMF chief who made the tragic mistake of challenging the U.S. dollar? A few months aftr he started proposing a new global currency to replace the dollar, he suddenly became a rapist. They dragged him off a plane in New York in handcuffs and everything. Prosecutor announced it was a rock solid case. His political career was destroyed, he was ousted as IMF head. Then exactly three days after his successor at the IMF was sworn in, suddenly the prosecutor dropped the charges and admitted that the case was bogus.

DSK? The guy who was accused of forcing a hotel maid to give him a beej against her will? The guy who said he never met the maid and has no idea what anyone's talking about? The guy who then said yeah, he met her when she cleaned his room, but the door was open and nothing happened? The guy who then said, yeah, the door was closed, but nothing happened? The guy who then said, well, he was naked and the door was closed, but nothing happened? The guy who then said, well, she gave him a beej, but she was totally into it? The guy who then said the torn rotator cuff in her shoulder was because she really liked rough sex? No, he's totally credible. You just have to pick which of his many contradictory stories you believe.

5 days ago
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Aereo Files For Bankruptcy

Theaetetus Re:The real ripoff here (137 comments)

Did Aereo try to negotiate contracts that allowed them to redistribute content? Otherwise they were not trying to operate as a cable company, they were trying to make money off someone else's product without paying for it.

They don't need to, and neither do cable companies. 17 USC 111 provides for compulsory copyright licensing for cable providers, with rates set by the government. Once SCOTUS said Aereo was a cable company, they should have been allowed to take advantage of those licenses. However, the District Court said that they're also NOT a cable company, leaving Aereo in a legal limbo where they can't carry the content, regardless of whether they pay for it or not.

5 days ago
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Aereo Files For Bankruptcy

Theaetetus Re:Changed the laws? No (137 comments)

The U.S. Supreme Court decision effectively changed the laws

The existing laws defined them as a cable company. They were not very smart to think otherwise. The laws may need to go away, but that was always the correct interpretation.

That's incorrect... If they were defined as a cable company, they could pay compulsory royalties and carry the content legally. However, the District Court recently held that no, they are not a cable company, and have no ability to pay those royalties for a license.

So, in essence, you have the Supreme Court saying that they're not NOT a cable company, and the District Court saying that they're NOT a cable company. It leaves them in a position where they are neither a cable company nor NOT a cable company, and therefore can never carry broadcast content, regardless of whether they want to pay for it or not.

5 days ago
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Court Shuts Down Alleged $120M Tech Support Scam

Theaetetus Re:About time! (129 comments)

Surveying friends and family (including a couple hundred facebook friends), calls at first seemed random, but in more recent months, appear to specifically be targeting people over 50. The most recent calls have asked for me by name. This leads me to believe that they're using someone's pilfered (or purchased?) address list. Has AARP had any breaches lately?

You're right regarding age - they've hung up on me in the past if I've sounded too youthful, so when I'm trying to get a scammer to stay on the line, I make my voice all quavery like an old man.
I have a friend who signed me up for a free trial of adult diapers as an April Fool's joke... my guess is that's how they got my number.

Incidentally, the Fake name generator is great for keeping them on the line for a long time, giving fake credit card numbers and addresses until they catch on.

about a week ago

Submissions

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Supreme Court unanimous: replanting patented seeds is patent infringement

Theaetetus Theaetetus writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Theaetetus (590071) writes "Farmer Vernon Bowman used Monsanto's patented Roundup Ready (herbicide-resistant) soybean seeds for his first planting of the season, but had a bright idea for his second planting: he bought commodity seeds from a grain elevator knowing that most of his neighbor farmers also used Roundup Ready seeds. Bowman planted those seeds and used Roundup herbicide to kill off all of the non-resistant seeds, leaving him with only Roundup Ready seeds, which he then replanted. When Monsanto found out, they sued for patent infringement.

Bowman argued that the doctrine of patent exhaustion applies: similar to the copyright "first sale" doctrine, once a patented article is first sold, the patent owner loses further rights with respect to that item. According to Bowman, since the beans were sold to the grain elevator, he can purchase and replant them freely, right?

Not so, says a unanimous Supreme Court: "Under the patent exhaustion doctrine, Bowman could resell the patented soybeans he purchased from the grain elevator; so too he could consume the beans himself or feed them to his animals. Monsanto, although the patent holder, would have no business interfering in those uses of Roundup Ready beans. But the exhaustion doctrine does not enable Bowman to make additional patented soybeans without Monsanto’s permission (either express or implied).""

Link to Original Source
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Illustrated Guide to Apple-HTC Patents

Theaetetus Theaetetus writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Theaetetus writes "Gizmodo has a illustrated guide to the patents Apple is asserting in the pending Apple v. HTC infringement suit. Readers should bear in mind that what is shown, however, is the title, abstract, and representative figure from each patent; the claims, which define the invention, are not shown, so immediate claims of obviousness based on the titles should be taken with a grain of salt."
Link to Original Source
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5th Amendment and PGP: are passwords testimony?

Theaetetus Theaetetus writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Theaetetus writes "In a ruling in favor of privacy advocates, a federal Magistrate has quashed a subpoena that would have forced a defendant in a child pornography case to reveal his PGP password. "If [the defendant] does know the password, he would be faced with the forbidden trilemma: incriminate himself, lie under oath, or find himself in contempt of court," the judge said. Under prior case law, courts have distinguished between requiring a defendant to produce a key to a safe, which is constitutional, and requiring a defendant to reveal a safe combination, which is "testimonial" evidence covered by the 5th Amendment. More here and here."
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DNA co-discoverer claims blacks less intelligent

Theaetetus Theaetetus writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Theaetetus writes "In a move that will surely raise angry debate, James Watson, co-discoverer of DNA, has claimed that "black people are less intelligent than white people and the idea that 'equal powers of reason' were shared across racial groups was a delusion." Criticism has been widespread, with some anti-racism groups calling for Watson's remarks to be looked at in the context of racial hatred laws. Watson has previously found controversy with pronouncements that sex drive is linked to skin color, that "stupidity" could one day be cured through selective breeding, and that exposure to sunlight could make women slutty."
Link to Original Source
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Theaetetus Theaetetus writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Theaetetus writes "In an interview with USA Today, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer claimed there is "no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance." He then added that it had less space than a Nomad and was lame."

Journals

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Submitted: Sci-Fi channel pulls Arnold movies

Theaetetus Theaetetus writes  |  more than 11 years ago From a story in the BBC, the Sci-Fi channel has cancelled an All-Arnold Schwarzenegger day that was planned prior to the announcement of his candidacy. Spokeswoman Kat Stein said "we're pulling our Arnold marathon in deference to the electoral process," citing rules that say that all candidates must be given equal airtime.

Instead of the All-Arnold day, viewers will see a day of California disaster films.

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Apple iPod AIFF playback issue (which Apple won't admit to)

Theaetetus Theaetetus writes  |  more than 11 years ago Just in case this story isn't accepted by the editors...

I've recently been involved in a round of returns/repairs with Apple for a 20 GB iPod centering around an issue that is common to all models, including the new ones... but an issue that Apple has conveniently avoided mentioning, and instead taken misleading approaches when dealing with it.

This is a problem that not many people will encounter, but can be very annoying to those who do. When playing an uncompressed audio track (WAV or AIFF) from an iPod, it will stop every 2 minutes and 17 seconds for a few seconds, then continue playback... For another 2:17.
WAV and AIFF playback is supposedly supported: Audio formats supported: - Mac: AAC (up to 320 Kbps), MP3 (up to 320 Kbps), MP3 Variable Bit Rate (VBR), WAV, AIFF, Audible (Mac only) - Windows: MP3 (up to 320 Kbps), MP3 Variable Bit Rate (VBR), WAV [from Apple's iPod spec sheet] so what's the deal here?

The explanation: 2:17 of stereo 44.1kHz, 16-bit audio (what's encoded on a regular CD) is nearly exactly 24 MB... It seems that this is the size of the RAM cache in the iPod (it's actually 32 MB, but the other 8 are used for the system and temporary data, such as volume and EQ settings).
Apparently, what happens in the iPod is that it reads 24 MB at a time off the hard drive into the RAM cache, and then shuts down the hard drive (to prevent skips and save battery). Understandable and reasonable. However, here's the clincher - it only spins up the hard drive and refills the RAM cache AFTER it's emptied.
Rather than doing a refill at say 23 MB or so, giving you a seamless playback, they wait until the buffer is completely used, and then they dump it and do a full refill.

Most people won't notice this issue, since at 160 kbps MP3, you've got 25 minutes before the RAM buffer needs refilling, and a two second skip every 25 minutes is not noticed by most people (particularly since most people will skip to a new song at some point in there, thus resetting the buffer).

However, we've got a couple of misleading things here: Apple never actually lists what the RAM cache is. Instead, they list 'up to 25 minutes of skip protection', without mentioning what the rate used for that is - it could be much more, if you're using mono 32kbps.
Second misleading point is calling it 'skip protection' at all. The other place that term is encountered is in portable CD players - which read-while-writing to the RAM buffer, and have ever since the beginning (back when the RAM buffer was only 5 seconds or so).
Third misleading point is the statement that the iPod supports AIFF and WAV playback... when they should specify that that's only if your files are under 2 minutes in length.

The iPod is still a good piece of hardware, but this cuts down its usefulness as a high-quality playback device, and should be noted by anyone interested in purchasing one for professional playback. Incidentally, none of this is mentioned yet anywhere on Apple's knowledge base.

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UPDATE: Reportedly, this is fixed in Gen 3 iPods. I'm going to buy one and see.

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Theaetetus Theaetetus writes  |  more than 12 years ago I guess I should introduce myself, really quick, just in case anyone ever reads this.

I'm a 24 year-old audio engineer currently working in the broadcast industry, with 11 years of professional experience within the audio industry (including studio recording and sound reinforcement). I'm the assistant chief engineer of a decent-sized radio group that serves as the NPR outlet for two major market cities. My work is mainly repair/maintenance of electronics, audio gear, and transmitters.
It's the most low-stress job I've ever had.

Aside from the fact that they're a rich non-profit and they pay well, they also appreciate me and my skills as a talented problem solver who can rush in and put out fires before they grow too large. Every day, I get to point to something (or several somethings) and say "I fixed that. It is better for my having been here." While the money is nice, that sense of accomplishment and respect (both self- and from other people) is highly valuable.

If you have any questions regarding audio, electrical engineering, RF, radio/television/film, production, or music, feel free to ask. If you have any opinions regarding politics, religion, or philosophy, feel free to debate.

Thanks,
-T

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