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Comments

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What's your favorite medium for Sci-Fi?

jcorno Re:Prefer books to movies (322 comments)

The porn film industry in particular.

No, he said gaping plot holes.

1 year,12 days
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Birthday Song's Copyright Leads To a Lawsuit For the Ages

jcorno Re:Abraham v. Alpha Chi Omega (442 comments)

You're confusing copyright and trademarks, which are legally unrelated. They don't even fall under the same branch of government. Trademark is under the Dept. of Commerce (Executive branch), and copyright is under the Library of Congress, which is administered directly by Congress.

about a year ago
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China's Radical New Space Drive

jcorno Re:I'm pretty sure it doesn't work (419 comments)

They wouldn't if Shaywer had independently produced something that Boeing had already developed as part of a black project.

If they developed this in secret, they would have a classified patent. Classified patents are revealed when the invention is reproduced by a civilian.

about a year and a half ago
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Apple Fires Back At DoJ Over eBook Price Fixing

jcorno Re:Oxford Comma matters (311 comments)

1) That's not an Oxford comma.

2) Your "corrected" sentence makes the problem worse, since it seems like you should pause at the comma.

If you're going to make an off-topic grammar rant, at least make sure it's correct.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: How To Give IT Presentations That Aren't Boring?

jcorno Re:Prevent Death-By-Powerpoint (291 comments)

The very worst thing I see when someone opens a presentation is "Slide 1 of 50+". If you do want to use slides, use them as a guide only. A single picture is lots better than 20 bullet points. And for heavens sake, Do Not Read The Text To Us!!!

Make sure you know your subject, prepare 4 slides max and talk about your subject. Start with a question or quiz to engage your audience. Trick them into a 'Duh...' moment. Get interactive and don't be afraid to say "I don't know"...

I agree with everything up to the "4 slides max" part. A good rule of thumb is no more than 1 slide per minute, and you don't need tricks to make a good presentation. What you need is practice. That's the most important part of preparing a good presentation. You have to practice the entire presentation at least twice, preferably in front of another person who can tell you (after you've finished) which parts didn't flow well and why. Even someone who doesn't understand the material can give you a good idea of which parts are awkward or difficult to follow, and whether you're talking too quickly or slowly.

more than 2 years ago
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Bill Clinton Says 'Paint Your Roofs White'

jcorno Re:simplicity (722 comments)

3)Titanium Dioxide, used to make many white paints white, is a photo-catalyst, which means it can self-clean and chew up pollutants in the air.

Titanium dioxide is only effective as a photocatalyst if you use very small particles (tens of nanometers in diameter) of the anatase phase. Rutile, the most common naturally-occurring phase, is a very inefficient photocatalyst, and that's what you would find in conventional white paint. You could use anatase nanoparticles as your pigment instead, but it would add to the cost, and it's not readily available for this level of consumption.

more than 3 years ago
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Company Claims Ownership of Digital Messaging

jcorno Re:Prior Art? (325 comments)

That's the wrong patent application. The author (who doesn't seem to understand patent law) linked to another application by the same inventor. The correct publication is here.

The first claim in the application (which may or may not be the one that will appear in the actual patent, though it's probably pretty close) is very specific. It requires, among other things, that "each user device [have] a local database and an application for... sharing desktop resources," and that "the information and the application services being delivered to the users are based upon knowledge of relevant experts." I don't see how you could argue that Twitter infringes here, and it definitely doesn't address messaging or chatting in general.

more than 3 years ago
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With regards to beer, I prefer it to be:

jcorno Too much of a good thing (840 comments)

Micro-brewers and home-brewers all seem to think the secret to great beer is more hops. I can't remember the last time I had a micro-brew that wasn't too bitter to drink.

more than 3 years ago
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Justices Question Microsoft's Vision of Patent Law

jcorno Re:I'm confused (106 comments)

Actually, you pretty much describe the system as it exists. The 1 year period the GP refers to is for a provisional patent. You file the provisional patent saying "I'm about to release a cool new invention that does X" and then you have one year to release it and file for a non-provisional patent, which lasts for 20 (or 14 if it's a design patent covering the form rather than the function).

No. It's only considered prior art if it's offered for sale in the U.S. more than 1 year before the filing date. See 35 USC 102(b). This has nothing to do with a provisional application.

more than 3 years ago
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Should Professors Be Required To Teach With Tech?

jcorno Practice makes perfect (319 comments)

In my experience, the more often I teach a particular lecture, the smoother and more effective it will be. Forcing someone to change a lecture because the students expect it is unreasonable. Granted, some changes are simple (PowerPoint instead of overhead slides, lecture video available for download, electronic copies of handouts, etc.), but really, a halfway decent lecturer will understand where improvements can be made, and no amount of technology will make a bad teacher much better.

Besides, anyone who thinks college courses are intended to prepare you for the real world either never went to college or never had a real job.

more than 4 years ago
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California Moving Forward With Big-Screen TV Power Restrictions

jcorno Re:Idiots (339 comments)

Legislation, yes, but not this kind of legislation. If I buy, for example, a fridge or a washing machine in the EU, there will be a sticker like this one on the front telling me how energy efficient it is. This tells me how much energy it uses in one year, and I can multiply this by my energy cost per kWh and know how much it will cost me to operate annually. I can then do the same thing with the fridge next to it and see if it's worth buying a slightly cheaper one, and if I buy the more expensive one how long it will take to recoup the price difference. Most electrical goods come with a similar sticker now. No products needed to be banned, you just make consumers aware of the total cost ownership, and the market sorts it out. It's now difficult to find anything new with a poor energy rating because people just don't buy them.

Maybe I'm not giving the general public enough credit, but I don't think any solution that requires people to do math in their heads is going to work. On top of that, for most people, money you have to spend over the next 5-10 years is not the same as money you have to spend at purchase time, even though it should be.

more than 4 years ago
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California Moving Forward With Big-Screen TV Power Restrictions

jcorno Re:Idiots (339 comments)

Glad i don't live there. ( and hope their stupidity doesn't spread ).

The economics of this situation is more complicated than "costs more money = bad." People don't take energy efficiency into account when they make a big purchase like this. That means it's in the best interest of the manufacturer to save 5 bucks on manufacturing costs, even it means an extra $100 in electricity bills for the consumer. Legislation is the only really effective way to balance out the costs in a case like this, unless you can figure out how to make people pay for the electricity up front.

more than 4 years ago
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Kaspersky CEO Wants End To Online Anonymity

jcorno Not the whole internet (537 comments)

I'm pretty sure this would be a huge blow to the adult website industry. How many people would willingly visit those sites if they knew their name and identification was being taken down every time? It wouldn't eliminate every visitor, obviously, since a lot of people pay for those things with credit cards, but it would be enough to cause some serious damage.

more than 4 years ago
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Patent Claim Could Block Import of Toyota's Hybrid Cars

jcorno Re:Filing date (451 comments)

Just because it wasn't available in the US doesn't make it prior art. Prior art has no such restrictions.

Yes it does. 35 USC 102(b) refers to inventions in use or offered for sale in the US only. You can maybe get around that if the owner's manual or service manual was available to the public and addressed the relevant features, since publications don't have that restriction; but as for the car itself, only domestic availability counts.

more than 4 years ago
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Genetic Mutation Enables Less Sleep

jcorno Re:I thought it said... (272 comments)

I thought it said genetic mutation for less sheep. That could cause problems in alabama...

You've obviously never been to Alabama. Who needs sheep when you have cousins and sisters?

more than 5 years ago
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Cellphones Increasingly Used As Evidence In Court

jcorno This is not an invasion of privacy (232 comments)

Your cell phone service provider is not bound by any confidentiality laws. If they're willing to hand over your records for just a subpoena, or even for a simple request, it's within their rights. Your expectation of privacy doesn't apply to information that you provide a third party unless it's a doctor, lawyer, or spouse.

more than 5 years ago
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Best kind of engineering:

jcorno Re:Engineering BAH (491 comments)

All I have to say can be summarized by (engineers fall in somewhere between biologist and chemist): http://xkcd.com/435/

Physicists should clearly be at the top. Mathematicians just do abstract physics, which lumps them in with the engineers under "people who make things that are useful for physicists." In other words, a step above chemists.

more than 5 years ago
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Supreme Court To Review "Business Method" Patents

jcorno Re:That's great (181 comments)

Afterward, religious kooks rule the...midwest, supplied with arms by east and west coasters to fight a proxy war.

Tonight we're going to look into the future, all the way to the year...2000.

more than 5 years ago
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Why Is It So Difficult To Fire Bad Teachers?

jcorno Re:Media using teachers as punching bags again (1322 comments)

The article kicks off describing how a group of shrill, ignorant parents took the word of an emotionally disturbed 12 year old and decided to push for someone to be fired based soley on that.

You obviously didn't read to the end of the article. The case was based on the testimony of the teaching assistant and every student in the class. Even the review panel believed he said those things. They just assumed he was joking to lighten the mood and that he didn't mean any harm.

more than 5 years ago

Submissions

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Alberto Gonzales resigns as U.S. Attorney General

jcorno jcorno writes  |  about 7 years ago

jcorno (889560) writes "Alberto Gonzales has resigned. The scandal over the U.S. Attorney firings was finally enough to push him out. Unfortunately, he was at the center of the controversy, so it now seems unlikely that the issue will be resolved. He's being replaced by Michael Chertoff."

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