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An Algorithm to End the Lines for Ice at Burning Man

clovis need strict ordering rules (329 comments)

ice vendor: What do you want?
stoner: um ...
ice vendor: No ice for you! Next!

2 days ago

Court Rules Parents May Be Liable For What Their Kids Post On Facebook

clovis Re:The Actual Issue (322 comments)

That law has little to do with this situation. The act was committed while he was in the care of the school, unless it can be shown that the boy told his parents he was going to make the fake account there is nothing there for the parents to be charged with. Now on to not deleting the account, the law requires parents to prevent actions of a child under their control, the law does not require parents to compel action of a child under their control.

Not true, what you said.
The FaceBook page was not created at school.
Like 99% the point of the court case was that it was done on the home computer and maintained from there.

CTRL-C/CTRL-V from the court order:
" In his written statement, Dustin stated:
In homeroom, Melissa and I decided to make a Facebook [page] under
someone’s name and she said, “Who do we hate in this room?” I said “I
don’t know, Alex Boston?” So we made up a username and a password
for it. We went home and made the Facebook [page]. I chose Alex
Boston because she followed me around and my friends did not like her
and told her to leave me alone. I went home and made Alex Boston’s
Facebook [page]. Melissa went home to her house and pretended to be
Alex. . . . I went home and posted on Alex’s [fake] Facebook [page for]
about 4 or 5 days. Melissa went and posted on it the same time. "

5 days ago

Lockheed Claims Breakthrough On Fusion Energy Project

clovis Re:credibility of article is doubtful (565 comments)

"U.S. submarines and aircraft carriers run on nuclear power, but they have large fusion reactors on board that have to be replaced on a regular cycle."

yeah, no

It appears the Reuters article has been fixed.
Here is a ctrl-C ctrl-V copy of the line in question at this 3:56 PM Wednesday:
"U.S. submarines and aircraft carriers run on nuclear power, but they have large fission reactors on board that have to be replaced on a regular cycle."

about a week ago

Accessing One's Own Metadata

clovis Re:Are unlisted numbers protected by law? (94 comments)

I have no idea so let's get that out of the way and move on to the philosophical / logical arguments rather then the legal ones.

In a case like the OP's the only thing that matters is the legal issue.

Good points you made philosophically, however ...

If you're arguing that people shouldn't expect anonymity from a product designed to provide anonymity, maybe you should think it through again.

I simply Do Not Care what their expectations are from whatever product they bought. A company's promise about a product does not carry the weight of the law, and it certainly does not compel me to support their promises. For one thing, I am not the one who bought the product. I get no benefit.

I can tell you this about the law: I am on the USA's Do Not Call list. I get several calls most days, and almost every single one of them is illegal.
Who called? I have not a clue and no way to stop them.
I know I don't have to answer ( and usually I don't), and yet it is still annoying because if nothing else there's this ringing sound in my house.

Here's an extreme example: A common experience for older people is to have a relative in the hospital and to be waiting for the outcome. Answering the phone several times a day for these scams is worse than annoying. Not answering is not an option at such a time.

I would disagree with you because I don't believe in protecting us from anything and everything as I think it takes away personal responsibility for protecting yourself.

That's a good point, and I agree. However, lines have to be drawn somewhere.

The crux to me is this: The entity making the call is approaching me (mention again they are breaking the law to do this). I did not approach them.
That, and that in itself should be enough to shed that entity's anonymity for telephone service.

I'm not afraid of being scammed, and I have no problem with the concept of personal responsibility for protecting yourself.
However, I'm not the only person on this planet.
There is an entire industry devoted to cheating seniors who have diminished mental abilities. The foundation of this industry is anonymity - there is no recourse after they got the money. There is no way to find out who they are to stop their endless calls.

Another one is the "This is Microsoft and you have a virus" call. People have children; children will answer the phone, and children
  can be coaxed into revealing anything, and there is no way to know who had called after the remote control software has been installed.
Sure I can wipe the PC and tell the kids not to trust anyone who calls. But I want justice, and I want those people put out of business.

Perhaps the entities that have a legitimate reason for anonymity can also be registered with the government's Do Not Call list and combine that with future requirements that carriers fix their technology to stop callerID spoofing and anonymous calls for non-registered entities.
No one that asks for money, credit card info, etc should be allowed anonymous calls. Companies have some rights, but their privacy rights are not the same as individual rights

If contact must be made anonymously for some reason, then they can use the postal service.

other info

about two weeks ago

Accessing One's Own Metadata

clovis Are unlisted numbers protected by law? (94 comments)

"Telstra's one and only valid argument to date has been that identifying who calls me would be in breach of that person's privacy if they called from an unlisted number.

Are anonymous phones calls really protected by law?
I mean is there a law that specifically protects the anonymity of people calling from unlisted numbers?

After all, the person holding the unlisted number placed the call.
Do people coming into your house from the street have a legal expectation of anonymity? Does someone getting into your car have a legal expectation of anonymity?
Why would someone calling your phone have a legal expectation of anonymity?

I suspect it has more to do with corporations that robo-call wanting to hide. It's profitable for the phone companies.
When you become a senior citizen, you will begin to receive endless solicitations for medical alert bracelets, "free product" scams, health insurance and so on. I suppose everyone gets some version of this crap. None of these are allowed under the "Do Not Call" act, but the callers always have unlisted numbers and do not reveal their companies' actual names in the calls.

about two weeks ago

Test Version Windows 10 Includes Keylogger

clovis My tinfoil hat (367 comments)

I see many posts worry about "what if the logger is still in the RTM version" and "what if they turn it back on".

Well, what is to stop Microsoft from burying a keylogger and/or root kits in any of their numerous security patches for Windows 7, 8, MS Office or whatever?
And if they has the moral turpitude to install keylogging and grab your passwords in Windows 10, why would you think they have not already done it?

about two weeks ago
top Blame Tech Diversity On Culture, Not Pipeline

clovis Re:men and women are leaving tech (342 comments)

Check out

This article is one of the few that I've found that contains statistics about retention in various tech fields of both men and women. The differences in retention rates do vary but not by as much as is commonly portrayed in the media. In fact, based on what I'd previously read, they are surprisingly similar. Men and women may have somewhat different reasons for leaving the field, but that doesn't change the fact that roughly 40% of both sexes ultimately leave engineering.

Well, well. here we have a post that addresses the original article in a relevant way with data.
How did that slip through?

about three weeks ago

Why did Microsoft skip Windows 9?

clovis Afraid of lawsuit (399 comments)

They were afraid of getting sued by Microware

about three weeks ago

Energy Utilities Trying To Stifle Growth of Solar Power

clovis Re:Survival (488 comments)

Also, motor/generator sets with flywheels can be good for smoothing out poor quality electricity.
It can for short periods fill in sags and prevent over voltage, and also prevents the nasty problems that harmonics and phase shifts can cause.
That may be a way relatively cheap way for people who need clean electricity to add in solar and wind for their power.
I wonder if in the future, neighborhood based solar arrays or wind towers could use M-G sets to provide decent power to the immediate area.

They do have their downsides: regular maintenance is required, and they can be quite noisy.

about three weeks ago

Energy Utilities Trying To Stifle Growth of Solar Power

clovis Re:Depending on local ordinances... (488 comments)

Additionally, one of the features I find annoying locally is that the energy companies are allowed to purchase power from you at the LOWEST POSSIBLE ENERGY RATE, but are in turn allowed to sell power back to you at any current rate.

You just described every single business on the planet.

Put it this way: If you owned a factory that made phones that cost you $50 to make and you sold them for $100, and a competitor opened up making the same phones and offered to sell them to you, would you pay $50, or would you pay $100 to them?

How a law that said you Must pay your competitor $100 per phone and Must buy as many as he wants whenever he feels like selling them to you regardless of whether your own inventory is over stocked at the moment? That is what you are asking for.

about three weeks ago

Remote Exploit Vulnerability Found In Bash

clovis Re:Missing in windows? (399 comments)

I can't find the bash icon in the Start menu. Anyone know where it is so I can remove it and avoid this exploit?


You seem to have asked a question about removing the Start Menu.
Upgrade to Windows 8, but do not do the Win8.1 upgrade.
Thank you for using our products in the future.

about a month ago

NASA's Manned Rocket Contract: $4.2 Billion To Boeing, $2.6 Billion To SpaceX

clovis Re:I hate to be this guy... (188 comments)

Here's how the war on poverty is doing:

Thanks for the link, it has some numbers that show how relatively little NASA costs.

From the article:
  The government has spent some $22 trillion on means-tested welfare programs since the War on Poverty began (in constant 2012 dollars).
This does not include Social Security, Medicare, nor unemployment insurance.

All of NASA's spending since 1958 totals 790 billion (inflation adjusted).

This provides some data on the direct benefits of the space program:

Keep in mind that without the space program, there would be no DirectTV and we would be dependent upon Comcast.

about a month ago

New Global Plan Would Crack Down On Corporate Tax Avoidance

clovis Re:Most taxes are legalized theft (324 comments)

The link is to the word "steal", but because theft is the act or result of stealing, we should go with "steal"

to take (the property of another or others) without permission or right, especially secretly or by force

See the part about "without permission or right". It's "without permission" and "the right" part (among other things) that makes taxation and theft two different things.

about a month ago

NASA's Manned Rocket Contract: $4.2 Billion To Boeing, $2.6 Billion To SpaceX

clovis Re:I hate to be this guy... (188 comments)

...but people are still dying of starvation and lack of water on THIS planet. =\

I know space exploration is very important, but shit, let's get real here. I feel guilty driving a newer model Honda Civic knowing that if I bought something cheaper I could maybe feed someone less fortunate.

That's a good point, and that's why we spent several trillions of dollars on welfare and foreign aid since the space program began.

The question you didn't ask, but should, is "What are our priorities in spending?"
You say welfare is more important than space exploration. It appears this is correct because we spend vastly more money on welfare.
Nasa takes about a half percent of the federal budget. What percent would you have it be?

Here's where all the money is really going. This kind of shows how relatively trivial is the amount we're spending on NASA.

about a month ago

New Global Plan Would Crack Down On Corporate Tax Avoidance

clovis Re:Most taxes are legalized theft (324 comments)

General forms of taxes are legalized theft anyway. When the government just takes money away for their "general bucket", it is nothing more than stealing.

Once in a while it is time to go pedantic.
Words have meanings. We can string words together without regard to their meanings, and create an aphorism that sounds good, but it leads to logical incorrectness and a misunderstanding of how things work. It would be better if you were just gibbering.

Taxation is not theft. The two words describe different circumstances and processes. The outcome may be the same (your stuff is gone), but they are two different words with different meanings.

about a month ago

How Governments Are Getting Around the UN's Ban On Blinding Laser Weapons

clovis Re:Not much different than the fire starting laser (180 comments)

Does anyone give two shits what the UN says, I mean really?

The soldiers care.
The US is a signatory, and the US military has given long prison sentences to its own soldiers who have violated the Army's Rules of Engagement which are an extension of the Geneva Conventions.
BTW, 1995 Protocol on Blinding Laser Weapons is part of the Geneva Convention on the conduct of warfare. It's not simply a UN resolution.

about a month ago

How Governments Are Getting Around the UN's Ban On Blinding Laser Weapons

clovis Re:One of those strange rules of war. (180 comments)

Yes. That is exactly the rule. Weapons that are intended to injure but not kill are illegal, weapons intended to kill are ok. Injuring someone because you tried to kill them and missed is considered acceptable, because not everyone has perfect aim.

No, that is not correct.
The Hague and Geneva conventions forbid "To employ arms, projectiles, or material calculated to cause unnecessary suffering"
There are endless misconceptions regarding the Hague and Geneva conventions. Please read the actual text of the Conventions and updates. There are many surprises such as the circumstances that allow the execution of random civilians as punishment for the behavior of others.

Here is a link to the Hague Convention.
"Annex to the Convention: Regulations respecting the laws and customs of war on land - Section II : Hostilities - Chapter I : Means of injuring the enemy, sieges, and bombardments - Regulations: Art. 23."

The same web site includes the Geneva 1949 convention and subsequent updates (including the blinding laser weapons article)

Regarding other posts, nowhere are any type of bayonets mentioned. Almost no type of specific weapon is mentioned.
Many people confuse the US Army's rules of Engagement with the Geneva convention.
The ROE is much more specific and is the source of many of the things that people mistakenly believe are forbidden by the Geneva Convention.
FYI, the use of .50 cal machine gun against individuals is not forbidden in either place. No one knows where that story began.

If I am incorrect, please show exactly where it can be found in the Conventions.

about a month ago

Ask Slashdot: What To Do After Digitizing VHS Tapes?

clovis safety deposit box in the bank (268 comments)

The things I care about a lot I copy to a hard drive once a year or so and place them in my safety deposit box at the bank. Some things I also re-copy to DVD's.
It's affordable and easy to access long-term storage. It's also about as fire-proof as you can get, and I suspect that it would be about as EMP proof as you can reasonably expect outside of a mountain. There is near zero chance of flooding where my bank is, but that may be a concern in other locations.

about a month ago

Ask Slashdot: What To Do After Digitizing VHS Tapes?

clovis reliable storage for the long term (268 comments)

You are interested in long-term reliable storage of this data, no?
After digitizing your videos, use uuencode and print the resulting files on acid-free paper.

about a month ago


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