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Patent Expires On Best Selling Drug of All Time

dwandy Re:See. Patents/Copyright spur innovation. (491 comments)

Sadly not.

I have always believed that there would be no form of creation if there were no longer to be respect for upholding and respect for copyright and author’s rights.


more than 3 years ago

EU Extends Music Copyright to 70 Years

dwandy Re:Extension == Theft (536 comments)

Right. ALL copyright is theft. Artists should have absolutely no protections along these lines.

Don't know if you're trolling or if your entire post broke my sarcasm meter, but although I don't agree with Copyright as a good means to an end, it is not theft; it's a deal. (between the public and the artists in theory)
The bit that makes it theft is the retroactive extension. If the increased duration was for new works there would be no theft, but there would be a new deal.
That only one side is really represented at the bargaining table and that all the research (I've seen) suggests that shorter terms would be more beneficial to society isn't really part of this discussion.

more than 3 years ago

EU Extends Music Copyright to 70 Years

dwandy Extension == Theft (536 comments)

In this discussion of copyright it's actually appropriate to call it theft.
This music is being (preemptively) removed from the public domain; it's being stolen from the people.

more than 3 years ago

P2P Traffic Drops 10% After New NZ Law

dwandy Re:Hahaha. it failed. (110 comments)

We have no idea of the success of this law as they're measuring the wrong thing.
Hopefully a decrease in p2p is not what the media publishing/distribution industries actually want. Hopefully they want increased revenue (more specifically profit, but in theory an increase in revenue is an increase in profit for this scenario). So unless we see an increase in sales that we can directly attribute to this law the law has failed regardless of the change in p2p traffic.
And to me this would still be measuring the wrong thing: as a society we want to measure not sales but some more abstract concept of how much quality art is being created.

more than 3 years ago

Google: Sun Offered To License Java For $100M

dwandy Re:Greedy, Oracle. (173 comments)

and the two companies couldn't work out a deal

While interesting, that Google tried to strike a license deal doesn't mean they believed they would be infringing on valid patents; they may have felt it was easier/cheaper to license than fight. Once the license price hit a threshold they decided to fight if necessary. And they may have felt that Sun wouldn't litigate -- had they know Oracle would buy it they might have been willing to pay more to avoid litigation. But that doesn't mean they think they're "in the wrong". The license may have included additional value; at the very least would have made them customers of "Java" technology which they are now not. Having Android==Java might have been a good thing for Sun. We can speculate all day, but at the end all this means is that Google talked to Sun about Java, and then didn't implement Java.
In short, the negotiating is a (not very) interesting historical trivia and nothing more.

Google used the code

This implies a copyright issue; they're being sued for patent infringement.

People have known about Google being in the wrong

again, citation needed [...to the other people who presume Google's "wrong" not you who did provide linky :-) ]

It should be noted that many of the patent claims have already been invalidated w/o further consideration.
Where this all ends is yet to be determined, but I tire (in general terms) of the growing presumption of guilt (in general terms) before trials are concluded. That's not a Oracle/Google thing, but a we-believe-in-trials-to-resolve-disputes or for the criminal trials; we believe in innocent until proven guilty.

more than 3 years ago

Google: Sun Offered To License Java For $100M

dwandy Re:Greedy, Oracle. (173 comments)

Google is in the wrong here

[citation needed]

more than 3 years ago

Facial Recognition Gone Wrong

dwandy Re:Problem with face recognition (375 comments)

65,000,000 * 0.01% == 65,000,000 * 0.0001 != 650 000
So 6500 people per year, or about 18 people per day get extra attention from a human. Doesn't seem unmanageable.
I don't disagree with technology helping deal with issues as long as in the end it's a human making the call; not a machine.

The real question/danger is if we begin to rely 100% on this machine whether other methods which work today will mean that Bad People (tm) will take explicit action to become one of the 0.01% ensuring 100% effective failure of the system.

more than 3 years ago

Security Consultants Warn About PROTECT-IP Act

dwandy Re:Idiots (298 comments)

They don't care if they knock out 10,000 sites like my own.

...and you're not even collateral damage -- you're a target.
The only safety is to give your music over to the MAFIAA; their sites alone are authorised to have music ...

more than 3 years ago

iOS 4.3.4 Prevents Hacking and Jailbreaking

dwandy Re:Is your microwave hostile? (281 comments)

Why is Apple the bad guy?

In a word: Expectation.
I don't see my microwave as being a general purpose computer which has been arbitrarily locked down. For your example to work it would have to refuse to reheat chicken on Tuesdays.

but which the manufacturer prevents you from easily running arbitrary code.

In a word: Intention.
I don't think that they are actively preventing you (which you seem to imply). It may be difficult (as you suggest) but that's because they are not selling a device intended for running arbitrary code; they are selling a device for specific purpose. Apple on the other hand wants to sell a device that is intended to run arbitrary code, but only code they approve of.

more than 3 years ago

Anonymous Creates Its Own Social Network

dwandy Re:Don't trust Google and Facebook (271 comments)

Don't trust Google and Facebook with your personal information! Store it with Anonymous instead!

Campaign Tag Line:
Don't make us come and get it.

more than 3 years ago

Firefox 8 20% Faster Than Firefox 5

dwandy Re:For those confused (441 comments)

yes, but on ver.8 the animation runs in 4 minutes.

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Mobile Data In Canada For a US Citizen?

dwandy Re:Dear Americans (270 comments)

Hey! We're Canadian! Mind your manners!

It's We're full, please fuck off.

more than 3 years ago

"Expert Body" To Decide Which Sites To Block For Copyright Infringement

dwandy Re:To Paraphrase Goering... (173 comments)

I reach for my gun

Congrats! You just made the Crazy People List. (trademark pending)
Now, thanks to that one comment on-line, the local and federal authorities have placed you on the Watch List (long ago trademarked). Should you go further in your anti-authority ways we may read about you in the paper with heavy slant about how you made dangerous remarks on-line. Or we may never hear from you again as some Secret Terrorist Court (trademark denied: "generic") deems you unfit to be amongst the law abiding citizens. And for our own good, we will let them keep you.

Either way; reaching for your gun works for them, not against them.

more than 3 years ago

LulzSec Suspect Arrested By UK Police

dwandy Re:It's prison time (361 comments)

They've been arrested. ... There will be a trial. How much more due process do you think a criminal deserves?

I don't think those words mean what you think they do.

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Reducing Software Patent Life-Spans?

dwandy Patents are on Inventions, not ideas (274 comments)

There's numerous reasons why patents on software are invalid. The most difficult to understand for a non-technical person might be that it can be reduced to math, which is already not patentable; so be allowing patents on software you are allowing patents on math. And demonstrating this in court for any scenario could be somewhat difficult.
But the simpler answer (from the start) should have been that you are not supposed to be able to patent an idea; you must patent an invention (implementation). In software it's either source code (covered by copyright) or it's an idea (not patentable).
The simple question from the patent examiner or judge for a software patent is a request to see the implementation. Since there's no implementation in "a way to navigate the web using a touch interface" it should get tossed. On the other hand, the specific implementation could (I suppose) be patented, but since the implementation is already covered by copyright, why bother with the (inferior) patent...?

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Compensating Technical People For Contributing to Sales?

dwandy Re:Let's look at that, okay? (331 comments)

So, the "socially inept" engineers somehow manage to convince the customers that they (the engineers) are trustworthy.

I've seen numerous people associate "socially inept/awkward" as meaning "technically savvy"; it seems that much like eye-glasses have been stereotyped as meaning "smart" it seems that all Asperger's syndrome sufferers are all technical whiz-kids. I worked with a guy who was pretty average in IT, but had a very difficult time communicating, and was odd when he did: everyone insisted he was some sort of genius.
So when the teflon-suited sales guy shows up saying you need WhizBang5000 (tm) technology he's full of sh!t, but when the socially awkward guy says it, it's true.

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Compensating Technical People For Contributing to Sales?

dwandy Re:Inside vs. outside sales (331 comments)

If you can get around these three small problems, your plan is otherwise sound:
[X] spend money
[X] training
[X] (sales people) understanding tech

more than 3 years ago

Why We Have So Much "Duh" Science

dwandy Re:Sounds like agenda-driven science (299 comments)

I'm less concerned with the agenda than I am that the entire study be open. Including the raw data, methodology etc. In this way, if they try and misinterpret the results others can peer review and point out the flaws. At this point it doesn't matter as much if they had an agenda: either their 'agenda' happens to be beneficial, or they can't back their nefarious agenda.

more than 3 years ago

Judge Orders Former San Francisco Admin Terry Childs To Pay $1.5M

dwandy Re:Inflammatory summary, anyone? (488 comments)

yes, withhold passwords on a network resulting in no measurable loss, get 20yrs of income as fine. Damage and destroy an ecosystem causing loss of animal life and depressing an entire area economically; get fines that amount to about 7~mos of income. That's called justice.

more than 3 years ago

New Alureon Rootkit Takes Malware To New Level

dwandy Re:A silly question (135 comments)

  1. not because MSFT built a bad OS
  2. download "Hot_Lesbos.avi.exe" and run it

I'd argue the second makes lie of the first.

more than 3 years ago



dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 7 years ago

NewLinuxCoder writes "I've pretty much made the switch to Linux from Windows at home, though I'm still stuck on Windows at work...which is where I do most of my coding. But I still have the itch occasionally to write some code at home.
I'm used to text-editing type environments (use UltraEdit and TextPad for Windows mostly) so I'm really just looking for a decent text editor with syntax highlighting, some macro functionality, integrated command execution and stdout/stderr capture. And despite my fun with vi (oddly also mostly at work!) I prefer to code in a GUI. I played with Eclipse in the past and found it somewhat overkill (and to be honest: bloated) for my needs, but maybe I should give it another look?

So the Question is: What is your Linux coding environment?"



dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 5 years ago If a company does something unethical, people defend the company saying: It's a business, it has a legal obligation to increase shareholder value, and as long as it's not illegal, the company must do it. These are just "good businessmen".
If a person does something which a business believes is taking money away from them, they raise the "ethics" flag, trying to guilt people into agreeing with new and harsher laws to make the ethics construct into a legal one.

Double standard much? Not really: it's just the business behaving unethically again which we already agreed was Ok, as long as it's legal and raises shareholder value.

Corporations are just a mechanism to allow bad people to go to church on Sunday...


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 6 years ago ok, this isn't my idea ... I read this idea months ago here on /., but I'm far to lazy to look up the reference now. The following is my recollection of the original idea, plus some very limited thought I've put into it since then.

If the "P" in "IP" stands for "Property" then why isn't there any property tax?
Here's a working model for taxing these "properties" that would help not only to bring things into the public domain once they no longer had value to the "owner" but would pull in some much needed tax dollars for the public coffers. If the current rights-holders want us to believe that the New Economy is built on owning ideas (that they are so important to be viciously protected) then they should also help in carrying their share of the tax burden.

All copyrights and patents would have to be registered (for ease of discussion, I'm only going to talk about copyrights, but the idea can easily be used for patents as well). The registration would include a basic filing fee (say $50) to cover the paperwork, and would also set a minimum threshold specifically to keep (most) people from registering every though they have as copyright. Next, the registration would require a value be placed on the work. Tax would be assessed on this value. In order to keep people honest, this would become a matter of public record, and at any time anyone could buy the rights to this work for any amount greater than the taxed-value. The purchase amount would set the new value, and tax would be due on this new amount, pro-rated for the balance of the year. Once per year, the rights-holder would submit a new value along with the tax, allowing them to decrease the value. Set the value too low and some other organization will purchase it from you.

At some point, the rights-holder will decide that it isn't worth continuing to pay tax+filing fee for this work, and will release it to the public domain. By not filing, the work would become public domain. There might have to be some provisions around the year-end to either keep organizations from doing 11th-hour 'liberations' of works (buy it 1-min to closing, and then allow it to go public) or other unintended gaming of this system for profit. There might need to be a grace period, during which the 'owner' has let registration lapse, but it's still available for another organization to purchase. Purchase amount plus tax would go to the tax-base for this sort of transaction to keep organizations from speculatively purchasing at year end and allowing it to lapse. This area might need some tuning.

This is basically a bidding system: it ensures that whomever most values (and is capable of paying) owns the work. Ideally the entire system is on-line, including registering and purchasing works.
The system ensures that works eventually go into the public domain. The profit driven companies won't hang onto unprofitable works, releasing them into the public domain once they no longer offer a return above what it costs to own it.
This also deals with abandonware since a work is not owned unless registered, and deals with the reality that not every sentence you commit to paper or pixel should be protected by law.

The only (official) complaint the current rights-holder class will have with this system is the forced-sale aspect if someone is willing to pay the value. The real complaint is that they will now get taxed on something they've been calling property to get the property advantages while never paying for the costs that come with owning property.
I think we can dispense with the complaint quite easily. If the rights holder sets an appropriate value then no one will buy it from them. It is only if they try and cheat; to set a price too low that works will ever get bought out from under them. Even then, the 'punishment' is that they get paid more than what they said it was worth! Imagine a car company complaining that people bought cars from them above the asking price!
Finally, all organizations have this ability: so they are also free to pursue ownership of works that others have priced too low. They are part of the market that places value on Intellectual Monopolies.

Lastly, as a derivative of this idea, if it is discovered that large companies simply pay the filing fee, plus set an unreasonable value and can afford to pay the tax in order to ensure that nothing goes into the public domain, then there can either still be a maximum time limit, or we can again assert financial pressure to force them to relinquish the works. Options include increasing the filing fee or tax rate as certain time-lines are met (from original filing: each 'owner' does not reset this clock). For example: The first 14 yrs would be reasonably inexpensive to own the work, while subsequent increments of 14yrs would double the filing fee and tax rate. This would make it impractical to own works forever.

Anyways, it's an idea ... a thought. A possible way to restore some sanity to forever-ownership of ideas, and at the same time to make some public money and to push more works into the public domain. Hey, I didn't call it property but if they want it to be property, then they have to take everything that that word implies: including the taxes.


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 7 years ago Off the record

In recent years, the economics of pop music have been upended. The market for CDs has collapsed, and not even the rise of legal downloading can offset the damage to record companies. Meanwhile, demand for live performances has rocketed...


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 7 years ago More Research Shows How The Fashion Industry Is Helped By The Lack Of Intellectual Property Rights

Back in 2003, we mentioned an article that compared the entertainment industry to the fashion industry, noting that even though there was no intellectual property protections over clothing design and copying was rampant, the fashion industry was thriving. This shouldn't come as a surprise, really. After all, without the artificial protectionism, the fashion designers are forced to continually compete by continually innovating and always trying to come out with the latest and greatest design. Even though others copy, there's tremendous value in being the first, or being the "big name" in the industry. The article included this fantastic quote: "Ideas arise, evolve through collaboration, gain currency through exposure, mutate in new directions, and diffuse through imitation. The constant borrowing, repurposing, and transformation of prior work are as integral to creativity in music and film as they are to fashion." In 2005, the NY Times wrote a similar article, but warned that the fashion industry was moving in the wrong direction, as lazy designers who didn't want to compete and wanted to rest on their laurels had started pushing for new intellectual property over their designs. Late last year, the calls for such protectionism grew even stronger -- though, the reasoning doesn't make any sense. The entire point of intellectual property protections is to create incentives for a market. If that market is already thriving, why do you need to add new incentives? The real reason is that it's not to provide incentives. It's a way for successful players to keep making money without continuing to innovate -- which is simply bad for society.

The NY Times is taking another look at this issue, this time in a piece written by well-known economist Hal Varian, who points to a recent study that doesn't just note that the fashion industry has thrived without intellectual property protection, but notes that a big part of the reason it has thrived is because of the lack of IP. In other words, if those pushing for those new IP rights get them, the end result will likely be harmful to the overall fashion industry. Again, this shouldn't be surprising, as removing protectionist policies tends to increase competition and the size of the addressable market, but it's certainly a good example to point to when people insist that things like the music industry wouldn't exist without copyright protection.


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 7 years ago patents don't work.

If people had understood how patents would be granted when most of today's ideas were invented and had taken out patents, the industry would be at a complete standstill today... A future start-up with no patents of its own will be forced to pay whatever price the giants choose to impose.

--Bill Gates, Microsoft CEO, 1991

Now that they be giants?

Protection for software patents and other intellectual property is essential to maintaining the incentives that encourage and underwrite technological breakthroughs. In every industry, patents provide the legal foundation for innovation. The ensuing legal disputes may be messy, but protection is no less necessary, even so.

--Brad Smith, Microsoft general counsel, 2007

So where would Billy-G be today if (for example) IBM owned it all?


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 7 years ago The reason that physical property laws are important is because they provide an incentive for the owner to improve said property. Assured that the investments made won't be stolen or appropriated without compensation, the owner of property invests time and money into upgrading the value of the property, and thereby increases overall economic value to society.
Without these protections it's 'might-makes-right', and those with the biggest guns control the property. We can see in general terms by examples throughout the world and history that private capital tends to make the greatest economic gains for the society.
Furthermore, we can see that if property is left undefended by law then the physical confrontation to take the property would likely damage the property. This means that it will take time to rightful owner time and resources to rebuild, and this is not economic growth.
It stands to reason then that for physical property the maximum economic growth is attained with strong protection laws.

So the reasoning goes that Intellectual Monopoly (which the apologists call Intellectual Property) would be the same. Left undefended by law, IM wouldn't be upgraded by private capital. And this is used as defence for patent and copyright law.
This is where the analogy falls apart. The problem with this is that while undefended property will likely be stolen or damaged, you can't actually 'steal' or 'damage' an idea. While a single plot of land can be owned by only one at a time, an idea can be shared with everyone, and no one is deprived of the idea.
In fact, mankind progresses by sharing ideas. Ideas build on those that came before. We could not build the automobile until the wheel was invented. We could not build the automobile until the blacksmith learned their trade. We could not build the automobile until we harnessed the energy in oil. In short: there were thousands of incremental steps over many generations before the automobile was made. Without all the ideas and inventions that came before, there would be no automobile today.

Patents are a monopoly. A monopoly means that you have no competition. In most places in the world, patents are good for about 20yrs at this point. That means that for 20yrs no one else except you can make use of your idea.

Not only can no one produce your idea, no one can improve on it. This means that for the duration of the patent the public must rely on one entity to improve on this idea. This has the net effect of artificially slowing the rate of innovation. This means that ideas are most valuable when they can be freely shared and expanded on by others.

So we have a situation where protecting physical property increases it's value while creating intellectual monopolies decreases their value.


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 7 years ago Techdirt says:

This is also a good example to disprove the commonly stated claims of patent system defenders. They usually claim that these patents are needed to protect smaller players from being stomped out of business by a big company with more money and connections who can simply "steal" their idea and dominate the market. In this case, it was Vonage, the smaller player, that innovated in the market while the bigger company was slow to act. Verizon did later copy Vonage's offering, but was unable to succeed in the marketplace, despite having a lot more money, much better brand recognition, and many more telephony customers already in place.

(emphasis mine)


"statistically indistinguishable from zero"

dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 7 years ago

We find that file sharing has only had a limited effect on record sales. OLS estimates indicate a positive effect on downloads on sales, though this estimate has a positive bias since popular albums have higher sales and downloads. After instrumenting for downloads, most of the impact disappears. This estimated effect is statistically indistinguishable from zero despite a narrow standard error. The economic effect is also small. Even in the most pessimistic specification, five thousand downloads are needed to displace a single album sale.

Felix Oberholzer & Koleman Strumpf


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 8 years ago http://wired.com/wired/archive/14.09/nettwerk_pr.html

Musicians generally make very little from the sale of their records. The costs of production, marketing, and promotion are charged against sales, and even if they go multiplatinum and cover those costs, their cut of any extra revenue is usually less than 10 percent. On top of this, the labels typically retain the copyrights to the recordings, which allows them to profit from the musicians' catalogs indefinitely. "It's as if you received a loan for a house," says Ed Robertson, one of BNL's lead vocalists. "But when you finish paying off that loan, the label says thank you and keeps the house."


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 8 years ago Work a strategy for decreasing your taxes and you could be sued ... and not by the finance/revenue department...


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 8 years ago speaking of drugs...
...I'm no way of the opinion that drug users need to be locked in a cage.

Please explain to me how locking a drug abuser in a metal coffin will make him/her a productive member of society?


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 8 years ago Read

But I did know that, if you are arrested for drunk driving in the Old Dominion, under the laws that took effect in 2004, your driver's license is automatically suspended for seven days without any conviction or court appearance.

hey, I'm no proponent of DUI, but (arrest != guilty) in my books. better check yours.


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 8 years ago Is it still art if you're willing to change for more bucks?

Is copyright really advancing arts and sciences, like the US constitution demands?
...just curious


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 8 years ago http://www.canada.com/topics/entertainment/story.html?id=5e3db5f8-9308-437a-82fd-2dd80bc5f65d&k=28296

Scottish singer KT Tunstall, whose debut CD Eye to the Telescope is currently on the charts, insists she's not worried about file-sharing.
"No, not at all," she says. "I have to be totally honest... when I heard about all the downloading problems and when I really thought about it, the only people who suffer ultimately - you know, if everything falls to its knees - are people who can't sing or perform."
"It's the people who actually can't do their job who suffer because if you can't make your money from record sales... I mean, I just know now that no matter what happens - if I lose all my friends and family and the record company spontaneously combusts - I can go out there and take my guitar out and make enough money to have dinner. It's something you feel really grateful to be able to do."

That about sums it up: Artists with actual talent will still be able to make money without copyright, but we'll lose the talentless manufactured bands... seems like a good deal to me.


dwandy dwandy writes  |  more than 8 years ago So it's occurred to me recently that recipes are to cooking what software is to computing: A set of instructions that someone took the time to write out, refine, check, test and finally publish.
Now, according to the Intellectual Monopolists, copyright is necessary to cause creation. And to be sure, the books where recipes are published are in fact copyright. Yet, I would suggest that there is no working* kitchen in the Western World that does not include a photocopy from a recipe book, or a hand-written version, copied out of a book, the book itself long forgotten, and no where to be found.
If, as I suspect, the piracy rate (on a "cook" basis) is essentially 100%, has this caused the cook-book industry to dissapear? Has this caused no new recipes to be written? Has this in fact eliminated the incentive, as the apologists keep insisting? Of course not.
So why do the music and software industries insist that piracy will lead to the death of their industries?

The difference of course, is that there are no real monopoly profits to be had, and this is not nearly so interesting to the mega-corporations that run the software and media industries. They are not interested in merely earning a profit as the recipe book industry does: they want the mega profits that are only possible by monopoly controls granted by the government, and enforced to the maximum possible degree.

*A working kitchen is where people cook ... to be sure it is less likely to find pirated copies of recipes in a kitchen where no one cooks!

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