Beta

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

Which Is Better, Adblock Or Adblock Plus?

martin-boundary Re:Neither (328 comments)

I see you don't understand how the network works. I pay for all the bandwidth I use (and some I don't use), through an agreement with my ISP. There are peering arrangements in place, but the bandwith that some website uses to serve me content is their own problem. If they're smart, they do like Google does and compress the hell out of what they serve, and work out deals with their providers etc. Moreover, the ads often originate from another network location, so the website I visit doesn't technically serve them to me. When that happens, we are talking about a menage a trois, disguised as an ordinary one on one relationship between me, the web surfer, and the website operator. You're right that I request content from the website. You're wrong about not making a distinction which content I request. I in fact request the parts I value, and do not request the ads.

The point is that I am not taking or using anyone's bandwidth but my own, that I expect websites to do the same, and that advertisers are uninvited interlopers in a private relationship. That's what peering is all about. FIgure out how to phrase your objections within that framework and maybe I'll believe some of your arguments.

5 hours ago
top

Which Is Better, Adblock Or Adblock Plus?

martin-boundary Re: Neither (328 comments)

That's just silly. How about I put a site behind a "paywall" that says I serve annoying ads.

Yup, that's fine.

Then how about I make the paywall free with no registration.

That would be stupid, as it makes it trivial to traverse it. But you are free to do as you please.

Then how about I make the paywall invisible and expect you to just go away if you don't like the way I've set up my paywall on my site.

That would be wishful thinking. Whereas in your imagination, you see a paywall, in actual fact there isn't one. You are free to imagine anything you like, and I am free to only use cold hard facts in my decision processes. I see that there is no paywall, so I will step over "it" anytime I please. There, that's how the world works.

yesterday
top

Which Is Better, Adblock Or Adblock Plus?

martin-boundary Re:Neither (328 comments)

like it or not, that's what consumers want.

If that was true, then ad blocking tools would not be very popular. They are, so this isn't true.

wanting to get paid for a service you provide is not evil. i assume you provide a service for your day job that you already admitted you get paid for? so you are you evil? no, it's just that you decided the work you do is worth getting paid for. well, great, bully for you then huh?

Actually, I only get paid because I signed a contract to provide my services in return for payment. The contract represents a mutually beneficial prior agreement.

If I went to a random shop on a saturday morning, and started washing their windows, and then I went inside and demanded to be paid - because I feel that it's fair to be paid for a service I give - I'd be laughed out of the shop. The windows didn't need washing, and I was blocking the customers. And rightly so, because there really should have been a prior agreement in place. Even as simple as entering the shop, and _asking_ if I can wash the windows in return for money.

I don't have an agreement with any website to view their ads. As such, if the operators come to me and demand I look at their ads, I will laugh in their face, and continue to use an ad blocker.

Agreements matter, otherwise one side is deluding themselves. The world doesn't operate on wishful thinking.

yesterday
top

Which Is Better, Adblock Or Adblock Plus?

martin-boundary Re:Neither (328 comments)

Yup, even open source projects can do with donations, and I have no problem with that. But a donation is a voluntary thing. It's not an entitlement. And if an open source project is incapable of surviving periods of time solely on a purely voluntary donation system, then the project and its goals should be rethought.

It's no different when a company finds that the market doesn't support all the things it wants to do. Companies with cashflow problems need to make hard decisions. Open source projects with cashflow problems need to choose what they provide too. The difference is that a for-profit company cannot offer _any_ services without an income, while an open source project can, through the pro-bono work by the members of the project.

yesterday
top

Which Is Better, Adblock Or Adblock Plus?

martin-boundary Re:Neither (328 comments)

Such sites SHOULD go away. Here's a hint for website operators: Either give your stuff away for free no strings attached (we do it all the time with open source software - which is way more complex to do than a website), or hide your content using a membership. Ads are pollution, and have zero value.

I, and many other people, don't appreciate the implicit bait and switch where we are being lured into accessing a "free" website, but oh wait you now have to look at ads and we'll track what you do etc. It's dishonest.

If you're going to make free content available to all, then make it truly free. No ads. You'll have lots of people interested in seeing it. It's also fine to have a profit motive, nobody's forcing you to give stuff away if you don't want to, but if that's what you want to do, don't pretend it's free. Except you'll have fewer page views.

Some website operators are greedy, they want the "free" page views and they want the income at the same time. That's evil. Luckily there are plenty of people like me, who have well paying day jobs, and have no problem whatsoever to give away free software to help ordinary people deal with and filter that shit out.

yesterday
top

A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World

martin-boundary Re:It really works? (133 comments)

Because. Everything is immediately obvious to slashdotters. QED.

2 days ago
top

Popular Android Apps Full of Bugs: Researchers Blame Recycling of Code

martin-boundary trivial! (143 comments)

That's trivial. It's like saying, there are only two numbers, "zero" and "many". It simply isn't true that all languages and all platforms are full of bugs in any meaningful sense. Some platforms are more buggy than others. This is a function of how old the platform is, how serious the creators are about preventing bugs, etc. That's meaningful.

For example, the well known OpenBSD aims to be much more secure than other OSes. The well known Windows family doesn't care about security, only as an afterthought. The difference is striking and very well known.

A good way to estimate which systems are likely to have fewer bugs is to understand the motivation of the application developers and of the OS creators. For example, if your focus is advertising, then you have a natural blind spot where advertising bugs are ignored. If your focus is doing "easy to use" software, then you have a blind spot where security practices are compromised in favour of GUI issues.

2 days ago
top

On Forgetting the Facts: Questions From the EU For Google, Other Search Engines

martin-boundary Re:Not a Slippery Slope (183 comments)

All great ethical questions have the quality of slippery slopes, and this is, IMHO, one of the most fundamentally important questions of the 21st century. About as important as the legal concept of personal property - can you own it, can others steal it or damage it, can you sell it, can people inherit it, etc.

The fact is that information is, today, more valuable than money. Indeed, look around you, companies are perfectly willing to take people's information in lieu of money. They know that they can always convert information into money later down the track.

Yet we don't have a concensus on who owns the information, for lack of a better metaphor. Is my full name and likeness my own, or some hollywood company's ? Do my weekend party antics belong to Facebook? Does Google have the right to claim and organize all the rumours about me ? If I generate information just by existing and living my life, and this information has a monetary value, isn't it mine in all its forms? Should I not have the right to control it, as well as the responsibility of it. I have such rights with my children, and such responsibilities, also with my everyday actions in conducting my life (which is exactly the information that ends up being collected).

These are not easy questions, but they are vital, and the EU / Google skirmish is a very important one. I'm a humanist. I believe laws and ethics should always be chosen by human beings, and favour human beings, at the expense of robots and legal entities such as companies and organisations, all else being equal. Of course I oppose Google on this.

The human species is going to have to grow up a little. First as an audience and consumer of the net, and realize that just because it's on the internet (or even wikipedia) doesn't mean it's true. It also has to realize what people said in the past doesn't always pose a true reflection of their current selves - that people change and evolve. Especially from a younger age like 13.

It doesn't work like that, which is part of the complexity. For making everyday decisions, people must make a choice all the time on what to trust, on the internet. Why? Because people's actions occur on the internet. It's the same medium. People buy things, apply for jobs, deal with their governments, and hang out among friends. On the internet. It's a wild mix of truth and false. Have you ever been on a public place early in the morning? There are janitors who clean up the trash. Otherwise we'd be knee deep in shit everywhere, everyday. Growing up and holding your nose is not an option. The internet is starting to smell. It needs janitors.

Second, it will have to grow up as individuals and realize, when you put it out there, you put it out there. And no nanny state can fix it.

It's not as simple as you think. You haven't thought of the other side of the coin. When others put it out there (about you), it's out there too. And Laws must fix it. This is nothing new. Do you think the Jews put out stories in the world that they themselves are evil, are thieves, have crooked noses, and live like rats in filthy houses, shitting in their own kitchens while they eat? They did not, the Nazis did. And because the Nazis put it out there, it became true. As true as necessary to make ordinary people believe it, and do their bidding.

Google collects all these stories about everyone indiscriminately. Some are true, some are not. Google's actions must be stopped. There must be an ethical, legal way to clean up information over time, and it must apply to all companies, Google, your local comic book store, etc. It is an important issue, and a very difficult one. Google can stay in business, but there must be some limits. And when in doubt, I favour human beings over companies, always. YMMV, but to say it's bullshit or a non-issue is putting your head in the sand.

You suggest people should just accept the new reality, that we should live in a world where anybody can say anything about anybody, true or not, by writing it in a web page or a SQL database. Where this information can be sold, can be used to discriminate against people, can be used for statistics to make up facts and political discourses, etc. You're worried we'll end up in a nanny state if this isn't allowed. Well, I'm worried we'll end up in a Goebbelsian paradise. Thus the slippery slope. For better or for worse, information is the new environment in which we live, in the 21st century. This environment fills up with (information) wasted, like every other environment where people live. It's starting to smell, and we must give people the right to clean it up.

3 days ago
top

Dropbox Head Responds To Snowden Claims About Privacy

martin-boundary Re:Cloudy, chance of rain (176 comments)

How is that insightful? You've completely missed the whole point of privacy laws. In law, your hard drive in your computer is yours, and it is not public unless you go out of your way to make it so. In particular, anyone who uses ssh to access your hard drive breaks the law, unless you've specifically authorized them to do so. Lots of people, some slashdot readers, have gone to jail for doing just that.

Also, your hard disk, in your computer, in your house isn't searcheable by law enforcement unless they have a warrant. So keep your stuff at home, and you'll be better off than leaving it on Dropbox (*).

(*) I can see you're unconvinced. Let me spell it out for you: if your file is on Dropbox, then a properly worded warrant needs to be served to Dropbox, and they'll allow searches and copies of anything their hard drives contain. Including your file, your neighbour's file, everybody's files. If everybody keeps their own files at home, then a warrant needs to be served to you, to see your files, but it won't work for your neighbour's files. Another warrant needs to be served to the neighbour to see his files. And it won't work for everybody else. A warrant needs to be served individually to everyone, just to get the same access that Dropbox can give with a single properly worded warrant.

about a week ago
top

Researchers Print Electronic Memory On Paper

martin-boundary Re:Ink? Nope. (78 comments)

On a side note... I've recently bought an Intel NUC, and when I opened the packaging the box started playing the Intel Jingle (*). Totally creepy and wasteful, I couldn't believe it. Intel definitely jumped the shark IMHO. I don't buy crap that often, is this common already?

Oh and if any Intel engineers are reading this post, I'd love to hear what you think about that particular piece of genius.

about a week ago
top

Privacy Lawsuit Against Google Rests On Battery Drain Claims

martin-boundary Re:ads (175 comments)

Because Google should not be in business to make money through harming people. They should just give you free stuff without harming me.

There. FTFY.

about a week ago
top

Privacy Lawsuit Against Google Rests On Battery Drain Claims

martin-boundary Re:ads (175 comments)

MUCH more importantly, though, ads are draining your BANDWIDTH. It's important, because it's also a simple demonstrable harm. If you pay $30 per month for your internet bandwidth, and the ads use up half of it (conservative estimate), then ads are harming you at the rate of $15 per month. Because Google purposely don't allow you to block the ads in android (*), that is a clear, monetary, demonstrable, harm.

(*) Google should be forced to put a big red button on their settings that will block all ads coming into the android device, and all in-app advertising traffic, if the user presses it. It should be force to do so or else be held as an accomplice on bandwidth theft. (**)

(**) Yes, I know, I'm dreaming. But I'd support a class action suit that would aim to accomplish this.

about a week ago
top

Google To Stop Describing Games With In-App Purchases As 'Free'

martin-boundary Re: Good. Now what about ads? (139 comments)

Tupperware. Look it up, before reflexively marking me off topic.

about two weeks ago
top

Appeals Court Affirms Old Polaroid Patent Invalid

martin-boundary Re:amazing... (45 comments)

Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

about two weeks ago
top

French Blogger Fined For Negative Restaurant Review

martin-boundary Re:The problem with criticism (424 comments)

Amazon censors some reviews under various guidelines, google it. The world is already more censored than it looks.

about two weeks ago
top

French Blogger Fined For Negative Restaurant Review

martin-boundary Re:The problem with criticism (424 comments)

Yes that's my point, positive or negative, if it's a review there must be truth behind it. We expect the same off scientific epxperiments, and that is what allows us to trust the results.

about two weeks ago
top

French Blogger Fined For Negative Restaurant Review

martin-boundary Re:The French way (424 comments)

That's a direct translation of "condemning with faint praise".

about two weeks ago
top

French Blogger Fined For Negative Restaurant Review

martin-boundary The problem with criticism (424 comments)

The problem with criticism in general, both positive and negative, is: how does anyone know if it's truthful?

It's easy to make up a story about going to some restaurant, and maybe you even actually went there, and if you did, who knows if you had a great service or not, maybe you were off your meds, and then for the hell of it, you write a scathing review. Or a great one as a prank for your friends.

On the internet, anybody can be a blogger and there's no quality control, just look at the kind of comments we get on Slashdot at -1. So while blogging is great and all, and saying whatever you like as a blogger is also great, if you're a blogger you should still put your neck on the chopping block like any normal journalist.

If you're going to say something, you'd better have definite proof, not just some random opinion. And if you get sued once in a while, accept it. It happens to professional journalists a lot. The trick is to back up your blogging claims with proper facts that you can actually show to a judge if asked.

about two weeks ago
top

The Least They Could Do: Amazon Charges 1 Cent To Meet French Free Shipping Ban

martin-boundary Re:So instead of "free" why don't they say "covere (309 comments)

So you are saying that Amazon has somehow found a way to actually ship items for free, to both the user and itself?

No, I'm saying that the cost of shipping cannot be accounted for as an integral part of the product price, rather it must be accounted for separately. If it is nevertheless accounted for as part of the price, then Amazon would be doing a bunch of illegal things.

about two weeks ago
top

CDC Closes Anthrax, Flu Labs After Potentially Deadly Mix-Ups Come to Light

martin-boundary Re:Killing the employees seems a bit harsh (89 comments)

They just wanted to save the hassle of sending in the nukes. Do you know how much paperwork they make you sign for each obliterated virus outbreak these days? It's like initial this pdf to get the plane, sign that fuel requisition, assisinate two pesky reporters, on and on! I kid you not.

about two weeks ago

Submissions

martin-boundary hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

martin-boundary has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?
or Connect with...

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>