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Fugitive Child Sex Abuser Caught By Face-Recognition Technology

jnowlan Re:We Are All Under Suspicion Now (232 comments)

> 'whatever means available'
Way too much latitude.

I'm Canadian. I came into the U.S. recently and, as part of the automated process, had my picture taken. I'm o.k. with that. What I am not o.k. with is that picture being kept beyond some REASONABLE amount of time, like the time I am in the country.

about 3 months ago
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Dart 1.0 Released

jnowlan What about a dart plugin? (121 comments)

How much effort would it take to create a plug-in for FF and/or i.e. that contained the dart vm?
Would it get you anything? What would the issues be?

1 year,9 days
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Google Science Fair Finalist Invents Peltier-Powered Flashlight

jnowlan Re:Hope she's learned something (170 comments)

'shake' flashlights are great. No need to wonder if you have a charge, just shake the thing. Great for when you just need the occasional minute of light, like at the cottage when you need to find the outhouse in the middle of the night. Batteries are always dead when you need them most.

I've used different ones and some are definitely better quality than others.

about a year ago
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Former Nortel Execs Await Corporate Fraud Ruling

jnowlan It's about the circling vultures (59 comments)

It's pretty clear that this case isn't so much about the three defendants as it is about the vultures circling wanting what is left of the Nortel carcass for themselves. To gorge on that carrion someone has to be shown to be guilty. The problem is even the judge is having problems seeing guilt when the accounting practices were accepted by the auditors.

What isn't clear to me, is how all this might affect the pensioners and former employees claims. They are the ones who really got screwed by this whole mess.

about 2 years ago
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The Science of Thanks Giving

jnowlan amen (55 comments)

to that

about 2 years ago
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The Past, Present, and Future of OSS

jnowlan What about the non-mobile devices? (150 comments)

I couldn't agree with this more.

I just bought a Samsung 'smart' tv. I own a cable hd box. While trying to get things to work I discovered by accident that both of these pieces of equipment have oss pieces, which has led me down a rabbit hole of investigating licenses, checking firmware releases and jailbreaking tutorials.

These boxes should be able to talk to each other. Easily. I can see their ip addresses. I am not an expert but I don't want to have to buy a seperate device for each piece of functionality I'd like.

Making equipment inaccessible by doing end runs around the GPL is just making me want to support the GPL more (and these companies less), but I need more 'middle ground' info from the great people who have provided open software.

i.e. it is disheartening that slashdot spends more time debating licenses these days than tech, but it has become nescessary. I'd like to see more discussions about how to enable the equipment we own. I didn't even appreciate that this is what jailbreaking is. I think.

about 2 years ago
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Google Patents Profit-Maximizing Dynamic Pricing

jnowlan Re:Not defending them, (294 comments)

While I agree with your comment, I still think it will happen. Automated systems will make these price calculations and _eventually_ dissatisfied customers will leave, but it will take time and the cause&effect won't be clear. The results will eventually speak for themselves.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Science-Fiction/Fantasy For Kids?

jnowlan Re:Don't try (726 comments)

Forgot he wrote those. I gained my love of reading from them. I know the Martians are still hiding out there.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Why Aren't Schools Connected?

jnowlan My daughter's teacher emailed everyday! (568 comments)

When my daughter was in senior kindergartern here in Canada she had a great teacher who emailed us everyday. Just a one liner of what the kids did that day - coloring, sang a song, whatever. It was fantastic. I know some of the kids were recent immigrants and I'm going to assume some of the families were poor, but the email list seemed to have all the families names on it. Having your name on the list was optional.

So it can be done, and I don't think it needs much infrastructure or effort for a simple system.

Now, the next year, when my daughter changed schools and teachers I mentioned this to the new teacher at the first parent-teacher meeting. She said: 'I've heard about that teacher. I won't promise anything.' She implied that she would take it up with the union as to whether it was a requirement of her job.

I am now getting more and more familiar with the educational bureacracy, but there are good teachers out there, and simple, appropriate solutions that help.

more than 2 years ago
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Microsoft Releases ASP.NET MVC Under the Apache License

jnowlan Re:ASP.NET MVC is OK, but C# is awesome (177 comments)

Why c# over python? I usually hear positives about c# but python just lets me 'get things done'.

I haven't used c# but on occasion have to wrangle java, and it is painful after the freedom of python. No boilerplate. Based on c#'s lineage I find it hard to imagine that there isn't a fair amount of boilerplate involved with using it.

more than 2 years ago
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Oracle To Pay US Almost $200M To Resolve False Claims Lawsuit

jnowlan so where is the contract information? (114 comments)

Any way to see what the discounts, etc were that are part of this contract? Freedom of Information request?

more than 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Mobile Data In Canada For a US Citizen?

jnowlan Re:Which island? (270 comments)

absolutely this. I usually spend a week each summer on an island near Gibsons - Pasley. Coverage is weak and erratic, despite the cell companies claims.

more than 3 years ago
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Usage Based Billing In Canada To Be Rescinded

jnowlan Re:The situation is much more complicated than tha (364 comments)

That is excellent analysis. Thanks. Unfortunately we are now operating in the realm of politics. I signed the petition, but I agree UBB is not the problem. It is the ridiculously low caps. I'm not sure how that point is going to come across in the political discourse we are about to engage in.

more than 3 years ago
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Adding Some Spice To *nix Shell Scripts

jnowlan aah, the old cli vs. gui debate in wolfs clothing (411 comments)

sure, I'll chime in.

I use unix and windows but would no longer consider myself an expert in all the bits. Thats why a gui wins when I need to search through files in a file system ... but I digress.

The best advice I've read for scripts had something to do with ennabling a script to know if it was interactive or not and present and appropriate interface accordingly. Whether it was through a flag or checking for some other interactive vs. non type thingy (which I can't recall at the moment. :)

more than 4 years ago
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How Can I Contribute To Open Source?

jnowlan reframe: how can i get my employer to contribute? (332 comments)

I'd like to reframe the question as above.

We use OSS where I work (uni.) but a lot of it is through the back door. When our CIO started he disparaged OSS so that the mgr's were wary of suggesting/promoting it. Yet in all the hallway conversations people are pushing it and it has become a significant proportion of our infrastructure, but I do not think it gets the support it deserves.

The vendors get the money but we use OSS/Free software when it is appropriate. So the question I’ve been pondering is how to get the org. to recognize this increasingly obvious fact through more financial support for the projects that are really making a difference.

Of course one big question is: when is OSS/Free software appropriate? Often we rely on vendors because they provide a complete solution where the alternatives just don’t measure up. It’s hard to argue against a COTS solution here, but I feel it often abdicates responsibility for a solution in favor of a check box against the problem.

more than 4 years ago
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BetaNet Sues Everyone For Remote SW Activation

jnowlan Re:Good (227 comments)

Great idea. It really fits in, but nicely counterbalances, the whole corporation as legal individual idea (albeit a psychopath - http://www.thecorporation.com/)
At least from my gut reaction.

more than 4 years ago
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"Loud Commercial" Legislation Proposed In US Congress

jnowlan I want a 'soft' mute button. (636 comments)

I listen to ads sometimes. I'd like to have a mute button that just lowered the volume. Imagine. I'd even listen to a reasonable ad, at a reasonable volume.

more than 4 years ago

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