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The iPad Is 5 Years Old This Week, But You Still Don't Need One

flopsquad You don't need one? (297 comments)

I need my iPad. For me, it is excelling in a critical role that neither phones nor laptops can fill. As a performing musician, I post the iPad up on my mic stand, and the access to music and lyrics triples (or more) the range of songs I can play. Granted, my use case isn't the most common. But there are actually tons of musical performers, and IME they're increasingly turning to tablets to replace sheet music and chord charts.

2 days ago
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Iran Forced To Cancel Its Space Program

flopsquad And the author of TFS... (141 comments)

...was obliged to use a concise term of action instead of the oddly constructed term of obligation "has been obliged."

Iran canceled its space program; Ansari fled to the US. That wasn't so hard!

I, on the other hand, have erstwhile been obliged to undertake in grammatical pedantry.

about two weeks ago
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Uber Suspends Australian Transport Inspector Accounts To Block Stings

flopsquad Re:Oh, fuck off. (299 comments)

Go have your little libertardian circle-jerk somewhere else; we just cleaned the rugs.

The Invisible Hand does give the best HJs...

about two weeks ago
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Uber Suspends Australian Transport Inspector Accounts To Block Stings

flopsquad Cue the Uberrage (299 comments)

"I'm extremely angry that this monopoly-breaking company (the one that finally introduced innovation and competition into an industry stagnant for decades) isn't letting government officials use its own platform to bust it!"

I mean, countries/states/cities are free to enact bans and harsh penalties to prop up existing cartels. See also U.S. states banning Tesla direct sales to consumers, because, hey, entrenched dealership interests. And as a philosophical matter I encourage Uber to respect the rule of law (all over the world) and push for democratic change rather than just rolling down Main Street with a foam middle finger out the sunroof.

But I don't have to applaud legislative support for inefficient, customer-deaf monopolies, nor large-scale sting operations that look quite like a money making game. And Uber certainly doesn't have to welcome fake users into its app just so it can get fined. Cat, meet mouse.


P.S. - Maybe taxis in Australia are infinitely better than they are here in the U.S., in which case I'm infinitely sorry I painted them with the same brush. Good on ya, much-loved not-monopoly taxis!!

about two weeks ago
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'Citizenfour' Producers Sued Over Edward Snowden Leaks

flopsquad Re:Cartooney. (163 comments)

I went back and skimmed the complaint and... a few things. One, the whole thing is (predictably) batshit crazy. Legit verbiage in what look like the right places, but saying "on information and belief" before "Nixon put space monkeys in my timecube" doesn't somehow make it uncrazy.

Two, turns out Snowden is a named defendant, and he is in big trouble for enriching himself with all this Russian hospitality.

Three, you're correct--this constructive trust idea (along with everything else in the complaint) has absurd consequences. It's a clever but completely untenable attempt to game the threshold questions (standing, jurisdiction).

about a month ago
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'Citizenfour' Producers Sued Over Edward Snowden Leaks

flopsquad Re:Cartooney. (163 comments)

Correct (IAAL*). He has suffered no legally cognizable injury or adverse effect (nor even a plausible connection to harm). So no standing.

Also, there is no legal theory under which he has a cause of action. In order for there to have been a tort, the defendants must have owed this guy a duty, then breached that duty, and that breach must've been the factual and proximate cause of actual harm. But Joe Random USA was an unknown, unforeseeable, causally unconnected nonparty who suffered no harm. Snowden et al owed him no duty, certainly not a fiduciary one.** So no tort.

What about his quasicontract theory of unjust enrichment? Maybe he's taking the term too literally. It's not simply that someone was enriched and you find it unjust. It's that you had a real or implied contract with the other party and they benefitted to your detriment. Did this guy half finish building Snowden a deck and then not get paid? No? Then he can't sue for unjust enrichment. Similarly, he couldn't, as a random citizen, sue on my behalf if I was the one who built the deck for Snowden. Nor could he sue North Korea for "unjustly enriching" themselves at Sony's expense.

*I am not your lawyer and this is not legal advice.

**Snowden may have owed the US govt a fiduciary duty, or duty of confidentiality or loyalty. But despite this guy being a retired naval officer, he is not the US govt.

about a month ago
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Colorado Sued By Neighboring States Over Legal Pot

flopsquad Re:Hope they win this case. (484 comments)

Err, NE for Nebraska, not NB for niobium....

about a month and a half ago
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Colorado Sued By Neighboring States Over Legal Pot

flopsquad Re:Hope they win this case. (484 comments)

I don't think that the 11th Amendment has been interpreted to bar states from suing each other, just citizens of states (or foreign nationals) from suing states for monetary relief. See e.g. the water wars between GA and FL.

Note that even if the 11th was implicated in State v. State, it would only stop a suit for damages. Anyone can still sue a state (or its agent/official, etc) for prospective injunctive relief. So, exactly the kind of thing OK and NB want: "Hey CO, stop selling legal pot!"

about a month and a half ago
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Sony Demands Press Destroy Leaked Documents

flopsquad Re:First amendment? (250 comments)

First amendment has nothing to do with this. The first amendment protects from criminal government prosecution, not reactions from private individuals/entities.

That's usually (roughly) the right answer when someone cries "But the First Amendment!" on Slashdot. However, your interpretation is too narrow.

In point of fact, the 1st Amendment does impose hard limits in other parts of the law, like defamation and copyright. It's not just about jackboots smashing our cameras.

The American version of Fair Use, for instance, is qualitatively stronger than the EU and most of the rest of the world. That's at least partly because the Supreme Court recognizes constitutional (1A) limits on how strong and absolute the restriction of speech is allowed to be.

All that is to say: First Amendment protection for journalism and dissemination of newsworthy/public interest speech will absolutely be a factor that a judge will explicitly weigh if any of this ever makes it into a courtroom.

about a month and a half ago
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Uber Banned In Delhi After Taxi Driver Accused of Rape

flopsquad Culpability? (180 comments)

Let's take Uber at its word and accept that the "full range of safety mechanisms" was truly applied, and those mechanisms comport with contemporary acceptable standards for background checks in India.

If that is the case, and the guy came up clean but yet still went on to do X, how is Uber any more culpable than a taxi company hiring a cabbie with no record, who subsequently goes out and does X, or a tour company hiring a bus driver with a spotless background, who nonetheless does X?

about 2 months ago
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IoT Is the Third Big Technology 'Wave' In the Last 50 Years, Says Harvard

flopsquad Re:Thank God! ... (196 comments)

... Michael Porter isn't over-selling it. /sarcasm I imagine that his company has a vested interest in the IoT, so he's totally objective.

Well, to be fair, Michael Porter isn't selling anything. Didn't you read the headline? Harvard said all this stuff.

I share your General Meh** for the coming <blink>Internet of Things</blink>, but I'm really excited for the coming era of ubiquitous corporate anthropomorphism.

**You know, the legendarily indifferent warlord with the awesome chicken.

about 2 months ago
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Clarificiation on the IP Address Security in Dropbox Case

flopsquad Re:Need a logo (152 comments)

Love it

about 2 months ago
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Clarificiation on the IP Address Security in Dropbox Case

flopsquad Re:I don't get it... (152 comments)

1) I think Dice gets ad revenue based on page views, and... maybe posts per article factors in?

2) They know when they put up some dubious Bennett novella, we'll all swoop in and post "What the fuck?!"

3) ???

4) Profit?

about 2 months ago
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Clarificiation on the IP Address Security in Dropbox Case

flopsquad Re:Need a logo (152 comments)

We need a logo for posts that are just about swearing at Bennett. Dunce cap?

AC, that's a capital idea! I like dunce cap, but allow me to propose some alternative icons for Bennett articles:
- A hot air balloon
- A whoopie cushion
- The smiling poop emoticon
- Rageface
- That truck window sticker of Calvin peeing, but he's peeing on TFS

That's just a few off the top of my head. Feel free to add suggestions!

about 2 months ago
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Clarificiation on the IP Address Security in Dropbox Case

flopsquad First.... um... (152 comments)

...oh it's Bennett. Anyone else want to post here first? Anyone? Maybe you're all still reading the 28 paragraph TFS?

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

flopsquad Re:police are good (481 comments)

Good trolling effort, but a bit too obvious. Better luck next time.

Yah wow, I mean if you're going to telegraph it, might as well go for trolling gold! Don't you have some unusually inflammatory opinions about Apple, Obama, copyrights, Edward Snowden, gamergate, race relations, SCO, systemd, climate change, and Israel?

about 2 months ago
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Halting Problem Proves That Lethal Robots Cannot Correctly Decide To Kill Humans

flopsquad Re:I think (335 comments)

Bingo! Parent's post is the definition of "Informative". There should be a mechanism by which enough mod points over +5 will turn a post into a sticky at the top of the discussion.

about 2 months ago
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UK Hotel Adds Hefty Charge For Bad Reviews Online

flopsquad Re:The TripAdvisor URL (307 comments)

new green flavor enhancer

Those croissants.... couldn't keep em down but they cured my syphilis!

about 2 months ago
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The New-ish Technologies That Will Alter Your Career

flopsquad Re:I liked the original title better (66 comments)

"5 Meaningless buzzwords not worth your time"

No, no, no, you'll never be a true Dice webditor with a headline like that. Try something like, "Which 5 Meaningless Buzzwords Are Least Worth Your Time??" or "5 Words That Give Kim Kardashian a Meaningless Buzz!"

Bonus points for correctly identifying embedded systems as a "weird old tip."

about 2 months ago

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