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Comments

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In France, Most Comments on Gaza Conflict Yanked From Mainstream News Sites

mjwx Re:Or maybe you're not so good at math (495 comments)

In Syria it's Muslims killing Muslims and a lot of people see that as a good thing. It may piss you off but it's just a fact, there are a lot of people that don't mind if Muslims kill themselves off.

And a lot of innocent people caught in the middle.

The problem is, the innocent people are also Muslims and saying that Muslims are suffering just doesn't garner much sympathy in the modern, xenophobic world.

The sad fact is, the only reason a lot of people, especially the Fox News crowd care about the Palestine conflict is that it's someone fighting Muslims... they don't give a shit about the Israelis (they'd just as quickly hate the Jews with the same irrational enthusiasm)... they only care that someone else (not a Muslim) is fighting Muslims.

2 days ago
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New Toyota Helps You Yell At the Kids

mjwx Re: Hmmm (205 comments)

Unless you're towing a yacht, or need to go off roading, a good (200hp+) minivan is a much more logical choice.

Most SUV's people purchase aren't capable of doing this.

A great many of them are just overweight hatchbacks that have been jacked up. FWD 2L engines with big bodies. Because of this, SUV's are actually quite deceptive size wise. They look big on the outside but have limited cargo capacity on the inside. Most SUV's lack a locking diff or low range gearbox which means they don't have the off road capability to tackle a damp, grassy hillside (also they lack underside protection, which only matters if you care about your car).

For passengers, a minivan is better, provides more room and comfort as well as better access to the third row (because they usually have larger doors). For cargo vans or station wagons (AKA Estate cars) are better as they will have more cargo space for the same sized car as well as handling much better (by having a lower centre of gravity).

I've gone offroading in the Australian outback, anything less than a Toyota Land Cruiser or Nissan Patrol will be killed out there. F-series utes (trucks) will have failed long before they get to where the Land Cruisers start. I call SUV's "soft roaders" because their off road capabilities end at mounting the curb.

about a week ago
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New Toyota Helps You Yell At the Kids

mjwx Re:Darth Vader (205 comments)

A Darth Vader voice would be more fun for misbehaving kids:

I was thinking more along the lines of a Goa'uld voice.

about a week ago
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New Toyota Helps You Yell At the Kids

mjwx Re:Hmmm (205 comments)

It seems that in the US at least, the minivan is quite nearly dead. How many companies other than Chrysler are still making them for the US market at all? Not many.

As for the "pull down mirror", that isn't even remotely new technology. Other vehicles have had those for a decade or more. But of course because America - and the American media especially - love Toyota with a great passion, we regard it as a technological marvel.

Toyota are not really at the fore front of technology, with the exception of their hybrid engines (even BWM is using Toyota's hybrid tech) but Toyota are known for being rock solid and unbreakable which is what makes them really, really popular (imagine, a car that you don't have to replace in 5 years when everything starts failing... looking at you Ford and GM). A side effect of this is that Toyota cars are a bit behind the bleeding edge, the Corolla's 1.8L 2ZR engine hasn't changed much in 5 years because it's still reliable and efficient and hasn't had any need to.

Toyota's reputation is well deserved.

But Toyota's current line up is boring, they have been since they killed the Supra and MR2 back in 2002. Even the new 86 was a bit of a let down, it looked good and handled good but lacked a turbo.

about a week ago
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Researcher Finds Hidden Data-Dumping Services In iOS

mjwx Re:Whoa. (98 comments)

Is Apple beginning to get like M$?

What do you mean by "beginning"?

about a week ago
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Researcher Finds Hidden Data-Dumping Services In iOS

mjwx Re:DON'T PANIC (98 comments)

The only secure Android phone is what is running Cyanogenmod.

Only if you personally are capable of security auditing every single line of source code. Otherwise, you'll be trusting someone or something...as virtually everyone else is doing.

And how much source code does Apple give you to audit.

There are levels of trust we accept because not everyone has the time or skills to audit source code. However many actions (like simply making source code available) make others more trustworthy than their competitors.

I know Google collects info from my Nexus 5 and 7 but Google are at least honest about what they collect, give me options on what gets sent and have demonstrated how it's annonymised.

Apple collects the same, if not more info from Iphone/Ipad users but they don't openly admit to it, they hid it deep in the fine print of the T&C's (something about sharing data with "partners") nor do they demonstrate that the data is anonymised at all.

Unless you're a complete idiot, it's easy to see who's the more trustworthy.

about a week ago
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"Intelligent" Avatars Poised To Manage Airline Check-In

mjwx Re:Sigh. (102 comments)

And when we got to the front, all the "electronic passport" aisles were gone and only the manned aisles were left. I know why they were removed - nobody uses them. They are too much a faff,

I use the electronic "smart gates" in Australia all the time, I've never had an issue with them. They get used a lot but there's never a long like at them because they're faster than a manned counter.

My biggest fear is another overzealous customs officer in another country doesn't do what one Malaysian one did and stamp the centre page that has the chip in it and the words "Do Not Stamp This Page" in bold lettering on it. Getting another passport is a bitch.

about a week ago
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"Intelligent" Avatars Poised To Manage Airline Check-In

mjwx Re:There's something touching about that comment (102 comments)

the solution of hiring more people will, of course, not be considered.

Nor should it be. The number of people that really care about a check-in terminal having a "human touch" is probably about 2%. The number willing to pay extra to have their ticket issued by a human is likely closer to 0%. Any airline hiring extra humans to deal with this will just lose business to their lower cost competitors.

Ultimately this.

A lot of the stress at the airport is self inflicted because people don't want to pay for things. They don't want to pay baggage so they lug an oversized case everywhere. In the US it has been a race to the bottom and it's been so bad that you don't have any airlines left that an Australian, Asian or European would consider to be "full service".

Let me be clear that I certainly don't blame individuals for the TSA cluster fuck, but beyond that it's down to cheap people being too cheap for their own good.

I just flew Singapore Airlines from Perth to Manila transiting through Singapore. Singapore is a great airline to fly on, 30 KG baggage in cattle class, 19" seats on their Airbuses, the cabin crew bring around hot towels before take off, a choice of meal in economy, decent tea and a good in-flight entertainment system. Beyond this, Changi International Airport in Singapore is a very easy place to get around. Free wifi that works, lots of signs, trains that run between the terminals every 4 minutes airside, plenty of free activities and lots of sitting areas.

The cost of this was A$200 above flying a budget airline like deathstar (JetStar) and for them I'd have to transit though Darwin (which meant collecting and re-checking my bags at Darwin). When you're in the air for 18 hours all up, its a small price to pay for a little extra comfort.

about a week ago
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Australia Repeals Carbon Tax

mjwx Re:Dissappointed (291 comments)

Let me help; the government that you're so disappointed with campaigned on and was democratically elected on exactly this platform. They left not one shred of doubt about what they would do with the carbon tax when elected.

LoL,

You are either a crusty old Liberal with their head so far up their arse that lump in your throat is your nose or have no idea how elections are run in Australia.

The Liberal government got in on the narrowest of margins due entirely to a series of dodgy preference deals.

Above that, they didn't advertise their polices, their entire campaign was based on "hate Labor". The Libs didn't even release a fiscal policy until after the election. Thats how bad they were. Their entire campaign was based on flinging shit at Rudd... Nothing more.

Since their election, they've become more unpopular than Labor ever was, it's so bad not even Newscorp can spin it into positive news. Just 9 months into his term and Opposition leader Bill Shorten is preferred prime minister by 10% (Abbot 34%, Shorten 44%) and if Tony Abbott were to call a double dissolution now (as many Australians wish he would) it would be a white wash for the LNP (Liberal-National Party).

Australians feel deceived by the Liberal government for good reasons, mainly because they've continued with several extremely unpopular policies that were either not spelled out before the election or are a complete reversal of what they promised before the election (which wasn't much). The media gagging over asylum seekers, Abbott's constant attacks on the ABC because they told the truth about Operation Sovereign Borders... Why is it any supprise to you that Australians are thinking of Tony Abbot as Australias worst ever prime minister.

The people of Australia

As a "person of Australia" (BTW, in Australia we just refer to ourselves as "Australians" not "the people of Australia", keep that in mind the next time you want to impersonate one) I want a sustainable energy policy, the Labor government had several good ideas including the Clean Energy Finance Corporation which was actually making money that Abbott is determined to axe for no reason other than it was Labors idea.

Please stop pretending you know anything about the current government in Australia, Australians or anything about Australia in General.

BTW, your "statism" quip shows just how out of touch with reality you are considering that is the best attack you could come up with.

about two weeks ago
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Ode To Sound Blaster: Are Discrete Audio Cards Still Worth the Investment?

mjwx Re:Not getting enough volume for headphones... (502 comments)

I use the motherboard audio to plug my headphones into. However, the volume for headphones is never high enough even with the volume control maxed out in Windows. Would a separate audio card fix this problem?

Maybe.

Higher quality headphones, specifically ones that have their own amp, would probably work better, though.

I'd ask if the headphones are plugged into line out or the headphone port first.

about three weeks ago
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UK Computing Student Jailed After Failing To Hand Over Crypto Keys

mjwx Re:Is "tyrant" now the opposite of "activist"? (353 comments)

"Tyrant judge"?! He was applying the law. A bad law in the opinion of many people, sure, but nonetheless crystal clear in its scope and effect. Are you saying the judge should have not applied the law? That he should have ignored the statute and made up his own rules? You're in favor of "activist judges"?

A judge should be free to question a law, yes.

Judges in Australia have come out of court saying the law was wrong. I believe Judges in the US are allowed to do the same if it contravenes your constitution (same here, we have a constitution too you know).

A judiciary that blindly follows the letter of the law is pointless as they just become to tools of politicians who often write bad and lopsided laws (hence making an independent judiciary pointedness). Nice try to poison the well with that "activist judge" quip, but it didn't work.

about three weeks ago
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Dubai's Climate-Controlled Dome City Is a Dystopia Waiting To Happen

mjwx Re:Dubai has bigger problems (265 comments)

Parts of the UAE, the Emirate of Dubai specifically are already out of oil.

Hence the fact they're trying to diversify like mad, they're trying to become the financial centre of the region in the same way as New York or London.

about three weeks ago
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Dubai's Climate-Controlled Dome City Is a Dystopia Waiting To Happen

mjwx Re:Hmm... (265 comments)

I'm missing the part where something in Dubai is waiting to be a dystopia...

What do you mean "waiting to be". For most of the Indian and Filipino "guest workers" it already is.

about three weeks ago
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Watch Dogs Graphics and Gameplay: PC Vs. Xbox One, With Surprising Results

mjwx Re:Unless you've spent $300 on a GPU... (210 comments)

The ultimate argument for the PC gaming master race is that you get a lot of console to PC ports but hardly a sniff in the other direction.

You can port up but you can't port down.

about three weeks ago
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Watch Dogs Graphics and Gameplay: PC Vs. Xbox One, With Surprising Results

mjwx Re:Really bad game to use for this comparison. (210 comments)

I really hope this isn't the start of a really bad trend of porting over crap, shoving it out the door, and telling the PC community to just throw more hardware at it.

What do you mean by start... This has been happening for years.

about three weeks ago
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US Arrests Son of Russian MP In Maldives For Hacking

mjwx Re:Kidnapping. (176 comments)

Not arresting Russia's own cybercriminals is just another way for the notoriously erratic and thin-skinned Putin to poke the West in the eye and annoy us.

Now the guy was arrested in Guam, a US territory not the Maldives but I cant help but think this was also a ploy to get leverage on Russia. Maybe setting the scene for a good old prisoner swap... Seeing as the guy is the son of a member of the State Duma (house of parliament) so he's the son of someone important, The US will give him a nice trial, sentence him to prison an then ring Putin and offer him a friendly deal, Seleznev will "serve" the rest of his sentence in Russia and in exchange, the Russians give the US Snowden. This may not be the intent of arresting Seleznev, but it seems to be a very convenient opportunity.

about three weeks ago
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US Arrests Son of Russian MP In Maldives For Hacking

mjwx Re:Guam is in the Maldives now? (176 comments)

Replying to myself - as it turns out, the plot thickens:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

Right, the US has gone completely off the rails in recent years. "oh, this guy stole some credit card numbers... Let's kidnap him, fly him out of the country and try him in some random court outside the country! Yea! Go USA!"

Seriously? It'd be one thing if he blew something up... but credit card fraud?

CC fraud is a huge problem and a persistent one.

I'd bet this guy was doing fraudulent transactions in the volume of thousands per week, if not per day.

You may be thinking "stuff em, it's only the banks money" but you forget two things. It has a knockon effect to the rest of the economy as the fraudulently transferred money is taken out of circulation and secondly that through hidden fees like merchant service and interchange fees, eventually the banks get the money back from you.

We aren't talking about someone who buys a TV with one stolen credit card number here. Its so big, the damage is in the hundreds of millions to billions. This would be proper, organised fraud. The kind the all western government should be cracking down on..

about three weeks ago
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Uber Is Now Cheaper Than a New York City Taxi

mjwx Re:What? (139 comments)

Uber is showing that a deregulated system can work.

Not really.

What Uber is trying to do is operate outside the law.

Because of this, Uber is one serious accident away from complete failure, doubly so in Australia. One serious crash and the insurance companies will come for blood. They'll pay out to the victims (including the passenger, but not the driver) and then come after Uber itself for compensation. That billion dollars in capital wont last long.

Uber is not a new idea, it's what is called "mini-cabbing" which has been around in London and other cities for years.

I used Thailand specifically because I knew someone would come back with the "but deregulation" angle. In Thailand there is no restriction on using a private car as transport. When I go there I can and do use them because it's a nicer car (a new Camry vs an old one) and its cheaper for long distances, this does not affect the prices of taxis in Phuket, where regulation does not exist nor diminish the number of taxis in Bangkok where its heavily regulated.

about three weeks ago
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Here Comes the Panopticon: Insurance Companies

mjwx Re:It's already going on... (353 comments)

Actually, as someone who is a pretty conservative driver, I welcomed the option to let worse drivers subsidize my premiums in exchange for them tracking my driving for a while. I could care less that they know (for example) that I always signal turns and lane changes and don't aggressively accelerate or stop. I could also care less that people who can't demonstrate the same behavior are seen as a higher risk and charged a higher premium.

...except you, of course, since you're on my \. frinds list and all...

"Give me six lines written by an honest man and I'll find one with which to hang him"

Cardinal Richelieu is your first problem.

Your second problem is, a lot of people who think they are good drivers aren't. The Dunning-Kruger effect is strong with drivers.

Being slow doesn't make you a safe driver, in fact that causes as many accidents as going fast (fewer fatalities, but to an insurance company that's not as important as it is to the police because they'll still have to pay out).

I've found the people who tend to preface their driving style with "I never" or "I always" tend to be the most ignorant about their problems. Its the drivers who admit to being imperfect that are the least dangerous because they are acutely aware of the fact they can and do make mistakes and look for ways to minimise/mitigate them.

about three weeks ago
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TSA Prohibits Taking Discharged Electronic Devices Onto Planes

mjwx Re:Incoming international flights (702 comments)

"the psychological impact"

Consider the psychological impact of targeting the security apparatus itself: the thing that is claimed to keep people safe turns out to be what enabled them to be killed.

Not nearly as good as getting people when they let their guard down.

Terrorists target buses, planes, schools and theatres because they know that's where they can get the most people when they're most at ease (and that is the really scary bit). At a security checkpoint everyone is alert and awake not to mention the security staff who will actually be looking for suspicious people and things. There's security personnel stationed everywhere in an airport security inspection line, not just at the X-Ray.

Finally, it's not that good of a place to set off a bomb. Seeing as everyone is in a line, you'll only maim a few people directly in front and behind you (their bodies will form a shield of sorts protecting others). With a bus or a plane the explosion is contained in a much smaller area meaning a small explosion can kill or maim most, if not all occupants.

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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Apple loses final bid to stop Samsung Galaxy Tab i

mjwx mjwx writes  |  more than 2 years ago

mjwx (966435) writes "Apple has lost its bid to gain an injunction against Samsung selling it's Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the Australian High court today.

The High court ruled in Samsung's favour saying "the argument from Apple's lawyers had insufficient prospects of success". Samsung has said that the injunction should never have been granted in the first place. Apple had not issued a statement at the time of submission.

According to Slashgear Apple has been requested to pay Samsung's legal costs.

Given that the High court is the highest court in Australia, Apple has no chance of an appeal. Samsung is free to begin distribution of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia."

Link to Original Source
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Australia ranked fourth in Internet freedom

mjwx mjwx writes  |  more than 3 years ago

mjwx (966435) writes "A report published by Freedom House has placed Australia in fourth in Internet Freedom, below Estonia, the United States and Germany. Freedom House highlights the lack of acutal censorship in Australia pointing out that the highly unpopular proposed ISP level censorship has been shelved since the 2010 Australian election.

The freedom house report is available here."

Link to Original Source
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UK Home Office set to scrap National ID cards

mjwx mjwx writes  |  more than 4 years ago

mjwx (966435) writes "In what would seem to be a sudden break of common sense for the UK, the Home Office has put forward a plan to scrap the national ID card system put into place by the previous government. From the BBC,

"The Home Office is to reveal later how it will abolish the national identity card programme for UK citizens.

The bill, a Queen's Speech pledge, includes scrapping the National Identity Register and the next generation of biometric passports."

The National ID card system, meant to tackle fraud and illegal immigration has drawn widespread criticism for infringing on privacy and civil rights. However the main driver for the change in this policy seems to be the 800 million pound cost. Also in the article, indications of a larger bill aimed at reforms to the DNA database, tighter regulation of CCTV and a review of libel laws."

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