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Consumer Reports can't recommend IPhone 4

brre shocking! (1 comments)

They seem to think a cell phone should function well as a phone!

more than 4 years ago

Google's New Scheme To Avoid Unlicensed Music

brre another incorrect use of "music" (213 comments)

You mean recordings, not music. The signatures are those of known recordings. Google's search won't find your unauthorized performance of "Hard Day's Night"; it's searching sound, not notes.

more than 4 years ago

Pakistan To Scour Google, Yahoo For Blasphemy

brre another incorrect use of "content" (371 comments)

sacrilegious content

I think you mean sacrilegious expression. Or sacrilege.

more than 4 years ago

Microsoft Talks Back To Google's Security Claims

brre love the wording (528 comments)

"[some say] we're doing a better job making our products more secure than anyone else"

Jeez, how many levels of indirection is that?

Are your products secure? Or not?

I'm doing a better job turning water into wine. I can't do it. But some folks say I'm doing a better job making water more like wine than anyone else.

more than 4 years ago

Mixed Reception To AT&T's New Data Pricing Scheme

brre another incorrect use of "content" (514 comments)

content providers and advertisers will need to start thinking about a data budget

You mean media providers.

The content could usually be conveyed with far fewer bits.

Rewarding those who get to the point could be a good thing.

I don't need flashing graphics to tell me it's gonna rain tomorrow.

"It's going to rain tomorrow" will do. Same content.

more than 4 years ago

Hands-On Demo Shows Asus E-Reader Tablet In Action

brre another incorrect use of "content" (108 comments)

the Kindle bookstore as a content provider

You mean media provider.

The content, if any, of the works is provided by the authors, artists, photographers, and so on who created them.

more than 4 years ago

"Supertaskers" Can Safely Use Mobile Phones While Driving

brre Re:Are they just worse drivers to begin with? (388 comments)

Excellent points. The case is hardly compelling that "it's safe for supertaskers". It's equally likely that something else entirely was going on with those 5. To make the case that this is safe under any circumstances would require far more convincing data than this.

more than 3 years ago

IsoHunt Told To Pull Torrent Files Offline

brre Re:another incorrect use of "content" (392 comments)

I take it that you believe "content" means "that which is contained".

"Content" means the substance or subject matter of a work. It cannot be copyrighted.

more than 3 years ago

IsoHunt Told To Pull Torrent Files Offline

brre another incorrect use of "content" (392 comments)

You mean media, or expression, or product. The content, if any, cannot be copyrighted. Also you don't mean infringing, you mean unlicensed, or pirated.

more than 3 years ago

Antimatter In Lightning

brre this explains (169 comments)

why you need lightning to give life to inanimate flesh and time travel.

more than 4 years ago

FCC/DOT Want High-Tech Cure For Distracted Driving

brre tech fix is a dubious approach here (432 comments)

Changing norms is probably what's needed instead.

The norm now is use the device anywhere: home, office, car, bathroom, supermarket, elevator, hospital, wherever. The world is your telephone booth. We all want to hear (one side of) your conversation. It's OK to force that on us. It's OK to threaten our lives and safety with it (the research shows that it's incompatible with safe driving, period). Go ahead. Do it. Anywhere. Everywhere. It's normal.

We can change that norm. A good place to start would be where it's just plain unsafe: driving while talking on your cell. The new norm: we regard that exactly as we would drunk driving: completely unacceptable. We treat it like that. We make law that treats it like that. Over time, that would save lives and limbs. A good new norm.

How to start changing the norm: stop talking on your cell while driving. You. Right there. You too. All of you. Now. From this day forward. Don't do it. When you see others doing it, be appropriately horrified. Have the same attitude you would towards someone's drunk driving. Not cool. Not acceptable.

We have no tech fix for drunk driving. But we have reduced it dramatically by changing norms.

Tech fix sounds great to techies. Probably not the solution here. If you put in tech fixes and don't change norms, you'll probably just see a lot of evasion of the tech fix.

more than 4 years ago

No Hand-Held Devices In Ontario Cars

brre Re:A word from the Devil's advocate (584 comments)

Yep. "Just drinking coffee"? What ever made anyone think the car was a restaurant? No, you don't have a right to drink coffee while driving. You have a responsibility to drive safely. However the research shows that talking on your cell is uniquely distracting and for much longer periods of time while driving.

more than 4 years ago

Birdsong Studies Lead To a Revolution In Biology

brre biology is not destiny (117 comments)

We see a lot of confusion on that point. "It's in your genes, there's nothing you can do about it". Oh? Bad eyesight was in my genes. I got eyeglasses.

The plasticity of the brain was already known to be very high. Now we have reason to believe it's even higher than previously known. Genes are great, I love 'em, but a lot happens after conception.

about 5 years ago

Vegetative Patients Can Still Learn

brre Re:control group.. (159 comments)

Uh, it's a within subjects design. Each subject was his own control.

about 5 years ago

Windows 7 Licensing a "Disaster" For XP Shops

brre if any other OS vendor pulled this... (567 comments)

...they'd be courting disaster. As in dead release, dead revenues for the next five years, or dead company. The idea that this vendor is magically immune to customer satisfaction is a notion without a future. Great present, but lousy future.

more than 5 years ago

Should Google Be Forced To Pay For News?

brre another incorrect use of "content" (322 comments)

The content is completely free. If I report that the sun will come up tomorrow (at dawn, say) you are completely free to tell anyone you like. I owe you nothing. It's expression that can be owned.

What is really meant here is news. More specifically news gathering which is done by humans known as reporters, and editing, which is done by humans called editors. They are not "creating content"; they are writing the news.

Now: Google doesn't do any of that. We can have a discussion on whether Google is distributing the results without helping pay for the feet on the street and the fingers on the keys. Seems like a good discussion to have, since there are now fewer feet on the street and fingers on the keys, and hard news reporting is on the decline. Consider a world with all the "content" anyone wants but little real news.

more than 5 years ago

Data-Breach Costs Rising, Study Finds

brre who pays? (67 comments)

Probably the costs of data breaches are about the same as they've been for years.

What may be rising is the share of that cost shouldered by the companies that make money by warehousing data about individuals, as compared to the share shouldered by the individuals concerned. If that's true, that would be wonderful. It would create the right incentive for said companies to get real about data security.

more than 5 years ago

Texas Board of Education Supports Evolution

brre unhappy title (344 comments)

A more accurate title would be "Texas supports teaching science in science classes".

Texas as far as I can see takes no position on what specifically currently is accepted by scientific community as science, leaving that once again as it had always been before, up to publishers of science books. That seems a wise choice.

And Texas likewise makes no limitations on what may be presented in courses on history, literature, comparative religion, anthropology, and so on. That also seems wise. The only problem was teaching religion in a science course. That problem is now solved.

more than 5 years ago

YouTube To Allow Self-Serve Ads For Major Media Players

brre another incorrect use of "content" (115 comments)

not only their own content, but illegally uploaded content by other users

It's pretty difficult to have illegal content. You mean "expression" or more specifically, "video". Content is pretty much impossible to own.

So let's rewrite this correctly: "not only video posted by owners, but also video posted illegally by others".

more than 5 years ago


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