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Police Investigate Offensive Wi-Fi Network Name

hellfire How is this different than graffiti on wall? (890 comments)

I swear I need to grow up and remove Slashdot from my RSS feeds, just one slanted post after another that invites the most vitriolic discussions and the first posters are such morons for acting like this is a free speech issue, which it isn't.

1) The network name was, as listed in the fine article: "F--- All Jews and N----" (sic). That should silence you assholes posting like it's no big deal or something.
2) The router was connected in a public township building, therefore on public property. And the police found the router, but it doesn't seem like they found the culprit. So either someone plugged in a brand new router in the building, or, more likely, someone messed with an improperly secured router. You can't make a case of private property because it wasn't private property.
3) In terms of harassment, this is no different than someone spray painting the same words on the front door. Sure it's easier to fix, but it's no less offensive.
4) You have a right to think the way you do, however wrong it is, but you do not have a right to put a sign out on your lawn preaching hate speech just because a bunch of people in your neighborhood are different than you. Everyone else has the right not to feel harassed by hate speech.

This is a case of vandalism and harassment, i.e a bias crime. If it was some stupid troll who thought it would be funny, he should be rousted by the police and dealt with in a stern but reasonable manner. The courts will decide if the perpetrator was a stupid troll trying to make a joke (which was not funny) or a serial bigot trying to scare people. But how can you determine which if you don't investigate?

more than 2 years ago
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Verizon Backtracks On $2 Convenience Fee

hellfire Definition of plagiarism (281 comments)

Plagiarism is defined in dictionaries as the "wrongful appropriation," "close imitation," or "purloining and publication" of another author's "language, thoughts, ideas, or expressions," and the representation of them as one's own original work.

So first of all your argument is wrong because it doesn't have to be exact. I felt the use of the word "obvious/obviously" and the fact that it was a throwaway line made it seem heavily influenced by McCracken's tweet and has the exact same sentiment. At best it's a coincidence but it might not be, I'm just saying.

But considering I put a nice little ;) at the end basically means I wasn't trying to stir up something all that serious, but fire up your flamethrowers if it makes you happy, I'll be off somewhere else.

more than 2 years ago
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Verizon Adds $2 Charge For Paying Your Bill Online

hellfire How I understand the fee (562 comments)

Okay let's dissect this before Slashdot goes apeshit. Per the screenshot on the link:

"A $2 payment convenience fee applies to bill payments made by phone (IVR and rep-assisted) and online (My Verizon and My Verizon Mobile). The fee is waived for bill payments made by electronic check (also referred to as "ACH") and for all bill payments made on accounts that are enrolled in AutoPay with any payment method (credit/Debit/ACH or electronic check)."

Now before I go further, note that some payment options cost more for Verizon than others. Mostly it's due to credit card interchange fees, and not personnel and infrastructure as most people think. Credit card processors love to slam everyone, small and big companies alike, and verizon is trying to maintain margins. Yes they are also trying to discourage people from using certain services by "incentivizing" them to use ones that cost less. I'm not stating to defend this, merely trying to explain how things work.

Now then:
1) payments over the phone are considered "less secure" by credit card companies because there's a human involved. Despite all the huge "this site got haxx0red and lost 100k credit card numbers" stories, most credit card fraud is an inside job where humans get card numbers. They have humans handling multiple things in customer service and I'm sure they have made things efficient enough at this point that someone taking a payment over the phone is not going to hurt their bottom line. What does hurt their bottom line is that "less secure" transaction cost more money to Verizon, thus a $2 fee. It's verizon passing on costs.
2) Doing payments by ACH is basically wiring the money. This passes the cost from Verizon to the customer, because wiring money might cost money with the bank. It might not, but it depends on each bank. Verizon has no real extra cost here.
3) The sentence is convoluted but it seems there is a difference between making a one time payment via verizon's site, and being enrolled in autopay, which autocharges every month. This part I am not as familiar with, but it would seem locking your card number costs less than typing it in once. From Visa's standpoint this is counter intuitive because if a user pays once and presents you with a card and you throw away the number after the transaction is done, it's "more secure" than storing the card and paying it at any time. It's more likely to get stolen if it's stored. I can theorize here that they must be using two payment systems and the autopay system is cheaper all around in interchange fees simply due to volume.

Now I'm not defending this fee by any means, but I am explaining the thought process here. They are trying to incentivize people to use lower cost services due to interchange fees, regardless if it costs them a human being to do so. To me, it's not in a company's best interest to start charging their customers fees like this and they should eat costs as a part of doing business. There are probably better ways to incentivize people.

more than 2 years ago
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DigiTimes Lends Credence To Apple-Branded TVs For 2012

hellfire Typical slashdot (232 comments)

32" is too small for even a bedroom

Yet another virgin slashdotter who watches way too much porn.

more than 2 years ago
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Democratic Super PAC Buys Newtgingrich.com

hellfire It's both (630 comments)

It's sad what we have come to expect from politicians. On one hand, this is a dirty low down trick. On the other hand, Newt is a lying, cheating ass, so it couldn't happen to a nicer guy. But so are all the other Washington politicians, lobbyists and PAC executives, on both sides of the aisle. So on some primal level I get entertained when it happens to someone I don't like a lot, like when I'm watching professional wrestling or a soap opera. And this is where our government has degenerated to.

more than 2 years ago
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Apple Wins Injunction Banning Import of HTC Devices

hellfire Re:Sorry to be pedantic (314 comments)

Figures that are 10 months old are ancient in the world of computing. I hear plenty of posts on slashdot about dwindling market share and increase size of the android market, and there are tons of pro-android articles disputing all of those figures so why did you even try?

more than 2 years ago
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Apple Wins Injunction Banning Import of HTC Devices

hellfire Sorry to be pedantic (314 comments)

Call them an evil empire all you want, I'm not doing to argue. That's the point you are trying to make. But don't call them an evil monopoly. They aren't a monopoly by any definition. I'm tired of people using that word and not understanding what it properly means.

It's like calling Sarah Palin a stupid man.

more than 2 years ago
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Christopher Hitchens Dies At 62

hellfire Arguing the wrong point (910 comments)

What causes the religion to start in the first place? What causes them to grow and spread? What causes them to be twisted and used for evil?

Religion are started when a bunch of people have problems which cause them unhappiness, and a smaller group of people or a single person offers them a solution to happiness.

Buddhism, for example, did not start out as a religion.

You are absolutely right, but in one of the classic evolutions of history, it became one despite itself.

The issue is not with any particular religion. The issue is not with any particular person, either. The issue is the human mind's capacity to react blindly to what is happening.

You appear to be stating the argument is that religion is the root cause of all our problems, which I never said. No the root cause of all of our problems is that we are illogical animals that in order to thrive need to live in orderly societies. Religion was a solution to that problem. It was an easier solution, but turned out in the history of man it was a much worse solution than adopting reason. Religion then went onto cause plenty of suffering and other problems and holds back our development.

Criticizing religions won't make a dent in it.
Criticizing religion is exactly what has made a dent in religion. First Christ made critical remarks about the organization around his religion by espousing his own which was more accessible to his people. When that was corrupted to the point that people couldn't take it any more, Martin Luther nailed a piece of paper to a church with a criticism. Each of these Criticisms has worked to ease suffering by furthering philosophy and humanism in it's own way, working towards a society where one is not injured or killed for their opinions or discoveries.

What would make a dent in it is teaching people how to no longer react blindly to things
How can you tell someone how to do something right if you first don't find a way to tell them what was wrong with the old way they were doing things? In my opinion, this statement seems to make someone like me and someone like Hitchens out to be simply an attack dog, which is a gross mischaracterization and is exactly what those in Religious circles want you to think. Hitchens and myself have been providing the solution this whole time... reason. All the things religion does bad are done perfectly well with reason. Obviously something in my messaging is failing because I can't possibly see how you didn't see that, but that doesn't mean I'm wrong. Saying that billions of people have been killed in the name of religion is not some kind of attack statement, it's the truth. Can you dispute that?

In a twist, Reason is hard because it goes against our animal nature, but in that much, we agree that as animals we are emotional and want quick fixes rather than well thought out responses, and we must train ourselves away from that animal nature. I agree with what you are saying about our nature, but in my opinion you are misrepresenting a reasonable opinion as simply a contrary one. I leave it to others to figure out a diplomatic way to bring humans into an age of reason, but you can't start that until someone is very clearly stating what is wrong.

If you shoot down one 'bad' religion, another will spring up, and so on ad infinitem
Considering Hitchens went after them all with one very large hammer, I fail to see how this is relevant. This isn't about taking out one religion at a time, it's about doing away with ALL of them.

To summarize: The problem is our animal nature, but religion in general is a bad solution that Hitchens devoted his life to speak out against. Reason is a better solution.

more than 2 years ago
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Christopher Hitchens Dies At 62

hellfire Hitchens criticism of buddhism (910 comments)

Hitchen's criticisms of all religions primarily boils down to their impacts as a whole to large portions of society, and how the larger defined body of Buddhism in the world is just as bad as Christianity. There are so called Buddhist sects are just as intolerant and violent as Christian ones, and ask their followers to cast off thought and reason and simply listen to their teachings. It's this abandoning of reason that's the problem with religion, and while one might define that for an individual person religion was good... for example, Jesus was a good guy who did good things and was better for his beliefs... but for society as a whole, religion has had negative impacts and is used for evil and hypocritical purposes. The Abrahamic religions do this far more efficiently than Hinduism and Buddhism but the latter are not, as a whole, innocent religions.

And that's not to mention the supernatural. Emphasizing the supernatural over reason is immediately a problem because it leads to be people not questioning the supernatural and simply accepting it.

I could find you a sect of Christianity that is equivalent to Theravada Buddhism, but there is a fine line between philosophy and religion. There's also a fine line between humanism and a well thought out philosophy that emphasizes reason. Where you want to draw the line is another debate entirely, but using Theravada Buddhism as a way to counter Hitchen's argument about religion is equivalent to using an anecdote to counteract statistical evidence. Invariable, as religions grow and spread they are twisted and used for evil and force people to abandon reason. Some smaller religions and philosophies emphasize reason, but the moment you put reason below anything else, you open up people to the principle that at some point, they are allowed to stop thinking for themselves.

more than 2 years ago
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Meet the Strange Bedfellows Who Could Stop SOPA

hellfire Corporatist (231 comments)

Wrong. The US is not becoming statist, it's becoming (is?) corporatist. You got modded up by all the Libertarians, who love this line of argument but it doesn't make sense.

The traditional left, especially the progressive wing of the Democratic party, espouse civil libertarianism, regulation of corporations, and control of industries where they feel competition does not work (i.e. medicine).

The traditional right, espouses fewer regulations on corporations so as not to become a dictator ship that picks winners unfairly and fiscal responsibility of the government as a whole, and striking a balance between federal and state powers. In the past, they have not liked spending, but when spending was called for, they called for a sensible balanced budget at all times.

The current Democratic part still espouses civil Libertarianism as a whole, but doesn't push it too hard because it stirs certain idiot groups to froth at the mouth and rather than go after them, they quiet down, and because Americans as a whole aren't very socially progressive (one of the last developed nations to free black slaves and give women the right to vote, and we'll probably be one of the last to allow some kind of marriage reform). Corporations actually fund these idiot groups and claim it's grassroots behind cleverly used laws designed to shield nonprofit corporations. The no longer push hard, as a group, for corporate regulations, because the only people able to put together enough money to help them run for office are the corporations, so they don't chime up too much about regulations. So thanks to clever corporate greed, the Democrats as a group are simply pussies.

The current Republican party still espouses fewer regulations, but to the detriment of the people as if to have no regulations and an anarchy state. This is thanks to corporations donating to them and giving them speeches that simply state that we have too many regulations and taxes when corporations are already free to run rampant and we are going broke. They get donations from those same corporations that fund the idiot groups, and are basically paid to say the same things these idiot groups say about social causes. They no longer push fiscal responsibility because they don't care if we have the money, they just keep chanting "lower taxes" instead of "fair taxes" or "just enough taxes." The taxes are lowest on the upper class and keep going lower, under the guise that if the rich get more money, they'll hire more people, which hasn't shown any truth in in decades. It's called trickle down economics, and it doesn't work. But they don't have time to talk about any other fiscal matters because they are too busy pushing the idiot group agenda. And they push it so hard then end up being supreme dicks about any issue they are on. And they look like dicks when open their mouths about some social issue that people just want to stop talking about. So thanks to clever greed, Republicans as a group are really big dicks

So yes, our government is run by a bunch of pussies and dicks fucking around and not getting anything done, being directed by corporations to not get anything done unless it makes more money for them. And we all watch it expecting something new to happen when it's the same boring stupid shit over and over. Welcome to porn Washington, DC style. Statist my ass, the state is dead!

more than 2 years ago
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What Microsoft Should and Shouldn't Do For the Xbox 720

hellfire Quote from John Siracusa (502 comments)

"What's wrong with Blu-ray? Everything except the fidelity of the content."

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Tablet With Root Access By Default?

hellfire Want a Mac truck when a golf cart would do (168 comments)

Exactly. This is a great example of "are you using the right tool for the right job?" Does hweimer want to actually take a tablet and start learning the innards of the software or do they just want something convenient to carry around the house or the neighborhood that does basic things? Richard Stallman makes is career and life out of using nothing but free software that he understands from top to bottom. He makes a good point but he's an extreme case. My personal advise is don't get caught up in the allure of "free" if you aren't going to take advantage of it. Android has a ton of malware available for it, so maybe it's okay to take a less rapid free software stance and just find the best tool for the best price.

But if hweimer is interested in low level hacking, then good for them, I hope they find a rooted tablet.

more than 2 years ago
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MS To Build Antivirus Into Win8: Boon Or Monopoly?

hellfire The Technologist Perspective (748 comments)

The Technologist in me screams: "Spend more time making your OS secure and less time trying to band-aid it with virus protection!"

more than 2 years ago
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Amazon Denies Reports That Airport Scanners Ruin Kindle's e-Ink

hellfire So why does Amazon bother denying anything? (182 comments)

Okay this article is weird.

It starts with the conventional "idiots who don't understand science think x-rays damage their electronics". But it quickly switches to the "more likely a static shock" line which is much more feasible. But then why is this a story? Static shock affects all electronic devices, the Kindle is no different.

Then it goes into a "eWeek licks Amazon's balls happily" advertisement about how awesome the kindle is, which has no place in an article like this. Why the hell go this far? And then Amazon out and out denies the problem even exists. They don't say "it could be static shocks which no device is immune from." They use the "a bunch of other people don't have a problem" fallacy to deflect the issue. While it does nothing for me, that's kind of stupid because it will stir up the conspiracy theory wonks like a storm of bees.

Looks like this article was written for eWeek by an Amazon Marketroid, not by Steve McCaskil, which makes sense now that I think about it. Deflect and deny rather than address.

more than 2 years ago
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Reviews of Kindle Fire Are a Mixed Bag

hellfire And your definition of "fad?" (381 comments)

The problem with defining a fad is that those on the inside of the fad rarely want to be considered simply part of a fad, and those outside, for whatever reason often appear bent on making the fad look bad by calling the fad a fad.

So calling something a fad is little more than an ad hominem attack on the device or market itself when you don't list the factors as to why it's a fad. It's also a good excuse for people who look at it and don't like it or don't find it useful to denegrate it, when that specific person is in no way a target for that device.

Reasons why it could not be considered a fad:

1) The LACK of a keyboard is actually pretty useful, because it's far easier to carry around and hold.
2) Businesses like it because it's a generic touch screen, much like the ones you see at restaurants and food establishments that already use touch screens to take orders.
3) It's easy to retrieve information on, and like a PC, keeps all the information at your fingertips. Salesreps like this because they can hold it like a clipboard but yet have even more info, and airline pilots like it because they can manipulate charts with their fingers and review data but only have a single device with everything rather than several pounds of paper.
4) Reading anything or watching anything on a tablet form factor is generally more comfortable than trying to get a laptop balanced on a surface or even your own lap. Holding a book for many people is simple and natural, and holding a tablet is roughly the same thing as holding a book.

So there's plenty of evidence against your idea that they are a fad, but no real evidence supporting that they are a fad, except people who don't find them useful and don't have a reason to buy them. People used to call computers in the 70s and 80s a fad as well so don't use the term lightly.

more than 2 years ago
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Sony Racing Apple To Develop 'a New Kind of TV'

hellfire Baloney (273 comments)

Okay name me Sony's most recent successes?

Playstation? PS3 was a joke, it adopted slowly, they screwed up security for online gaming and further screwed up by not telling everyone right away, plus the playstation line was simply feeding off the knowledge they gained while working with Nintendo and it's quickly running out.

Blu-Ray? Adoption is slower than DVD, because no one wants to invest quickly in HD TVs because no one wants to replace what isn't broken, Blu-Ray are more expensive and the digital revolution is quickly overshadowing physical media.

Last major success Sony that can be looked at without question was the Walkman. Sony's TVs used to be a symbol of quality but not any more. Sony's successes lately actually look like equivalent failures for Apple.

Indeed, Sony, Apple, *and* the consumer may lose.

I'm praying for the long haul for someone to break down the media hegemony. On the surface this makes sense, but the problem is Sony is part of the problem! Sony is a media company too remember? Creating a TV that doesn't sacrifice their media profits is in their best interest. If anyone, Apple, who doesn't have an interest in media prices and uses them as a value add to make people buy their electronics, and who reported breaks about even on the iTunes store, has a much better chance of breaking the media hegemony than Sony simply because they have no interests within their own company to block them.

more than 2 years ago
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Sony Racing Apple To Develop 'a New Kind of TV'

hellfire Well Apple will win on that (273 comments)

If only Apple and Sony are looking into new TVs, well Apple is about to win that race.

more than 2 years ago
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Hardware Running Android Fails More Than iPhone, BlackBerry Hardware

hellfire ALL annecdotal (357 comments)

Unless you mention that the iPhone ran like horseshit on iOS 2 onward, and the iPhone 3G always ran poorly. now my wife's 3GS runs like butt on iOS 5..

I owned both phones out to the latest operating system they would support, and neither of them ran poorly out to the latest OS they supported. The only thing you were correct about was the fact that the 3G originally had some problems with OS 4 which were later corrected. I even gave my gf my original iPhone before her contract was up and we got her a 3GS, which is on iOS 5 and runs great.

So by my own anecdotal experience your whole argument about "how it ran like horseshit" is simply invalid on it's face.

more than 2 years ago

Submissions

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Sustainability: New theory on why we can't find ET

hellfire hellfire writes  |  more than 4 years ago

hellfire writes "NPR has an article on a new paper that theorizes a solution to the Fermi Paradox. The paper theorizes that one answer to "If space-faring Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence (ETIs) exists, why aren't the ETIs already with us?" is that alien species may have a problem with sustainability. Resources are finite in the universe, so in order for a species to expand, it has to have enough resources to sustain all it's members to be able to expand thru the universe, or perhaps a species did try to expand, and then collapsed. In the limitless reaches of space, this simply makes it harder to find life because ETIs are not simply "everywhere." Ironically, the paper makes one ask questions about our own species' sustainability just as much as it does for any ETIs."

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