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Comments

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How To Beat Online Price Discrimination

pla Re:Steering? (152 comments)

That's nice. I still have a right to complain about it.

Yes, you can. And they can discriminate against you for complaining about price discrimination. :)

yesterday
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Employers Worried About Critical Thinking Skills

pla Re:Yeah, right (518 comments)

Because it seems to me that what they really want are employees who are willing to implement the latest stupid-assed plan a bunch of pointy-haired, mid-management, sociopathic dipshits have come up with, without question or comment.

Right, critical thinking. When the boss says "jump", you don't just blindly lift both feet off the ground, you thoughtfully ask "How high, sir?"

I mean, c'mon, man! Without critical thinking, you might not jump as high as he wanted! Or you might even jump too high, wasting precious company time waiting for gravity to bring you back to the ground so you can take the next jump.

No one wants a "yes" man. They want a "yes SIR" man.

yesterday
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Decades-old Scientific Paper May Hold Clues To Dark Matter

pla Re:Confirming the Brady-Curran model (92 comments)

Oh dear. Well consider me properly embarrassed. I just assumed the link went to the something about the same sort of dark photons mentioned in TFA. Heh.

yesterday
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How To Beat Online Price Discrimination

pla Re:Steering? (152 comments)

No, that makes it discrimination.

Although most people don't realize this - Discrimination doesn't break the law, except when done against a very small list of federally protected groups.

Giving senior citizen discounts? Cool. Giving non-senior discounts? Crime! "Ladies' night"? Kosher. "Mens' night"? Treif! Scholarships for blacks? Awesome! Scholarships for whites? You gonna get raped, son.

Unless Amazon specifically has code in place to detect screen readers or "old people typing" or Christian-themed plugins, they can charge whatever the hell they want, moment by moment.

yesterday
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Decades-old Scientific Paper May Hold Clues To Dark Matter

pla Re:Confirming the Brady-Curran model (92 comments)

Dark photons, or darkons , emitted by the boundary layer could simultaneously explain the missing mass and energy of the universe. Do I smell a Nobel prize?

Well, perhaps, but the referenced study failed to find any, thus ruling them out as an option.

Granted, science technically treats negative results as equally important to positive ones; society and the Nobel committee, however, have a pesky bias toward positive results.

yesterday
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Incapacitating Chemical Agents: Coming Soon To Local Law Enforcement?

pla Re:die by taser or gas? (147 comments)

Also, if you can save 400 of 500 in a hostage situation and catch all the 10+ terrorists. Go for it. The terrorists would kill them anyway and if they escape, they can continue their business.

Meanwhile, if you have 5000 peaceful protesters refusing to clear out of a park, hey, so a thousand accidentally die. Meh, go ahead and gas 'em, Lou!

I think you underestimate the mindset of the police. The People had it way better when a cop needed to decide whether you posed enough of a threat to actually shoot you, and then need to justify that decision later. Now, they tase first and ask questions later. 6YO girl crying because you arrested mom? Tase. 85YO confused grannie in a panic over a situation she doesn't understand? Tase. Passenger in a car peacefully insisting you respect his civil rights? Tase.

ICAs will just make it easier for police to apply the same reasoning to large groups, rather than to individuals.


BTW, a clarification on the FP - The "unknown" agent used by Russia consisted of a fentanyl analog - An ultra-strong opiate. For reference, as high as 9% of people have a potentially fatal allergic reaction to opiates; on top of that, individuals have a wide range of responses even when given a known dose; some people can take enough morphine to kill an elephant, while others take half of a Tylenol-II and drool on themselves for the next six hours. Using opiates as crowd control will both cause needless deaths and leave a significant fraction of the crowd basically unimpaired.

2 days ago
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Preferred smartphone screen size?

pla Re:Phones getting too big .. (168 comments)

for my girly little hands apparently.

As someone with great big manly hands, I still want my phone small, for the simple purpose of using it as a phone. Holding a 6.5x3in wall up to the side of my head works great for blocking the sun, not so great for trying to talk to someone.

I have a tablet. When I want to do some serious web browsing on-the-road, I can use that *juuuust* fine (and as a perk, it doesn't die within two hours of heavy use, unlike my phone). I have a phone because I occasionally need to make or take calls, not because I need yet another, even smaller, web browser.

2 days ago
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German Publishers Capitulate, Let Google Post News Snippets

pla Re:No, wait, do-over! (95 comments)

And Google gets nothing out of the relationship I hear you say.

You'll feel relieved, then, to know that modern atypical antipsychotics work much better, and with far fewer side effects, than the old-school phenothiazines.

Of course Google gets something out of the relationship. Google exists to make money. They don't, however, sell news. They don't sell content. They sell us. And in that regard, Google really doesn't care in the least if the newspapers decide to play ball or give up the single best source of eyeballs from across the globe they've ever known - Google can simply filter them out and only the newspapers themselves will even notice the loss.


But I no longer have as many bookstores I can go to, to look at books, find something I might not have picked before, have a coffee, talk to real people.

Amazon doesn't sell friends (you need to go to Facebook for that). Amazon sells stuff.

2 days ago
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German Publishers Capitulate, Let Google Post News Snippets

pla Re:No, wait, do-over! (95 comments)

The number of people required for "Collusion" aside - Not as different as you might think.

Both situations involve a company providing a distribution channel for third party content creators. Both situations involve those third parties thinking they have an unconditional "right" to access that channel. Both situations involve those third parties pissing and moaning over the owner of that channel not actually caring in the least about the loss of any particular group of content producers.

I'll admit that the Google situation has a bit more of a karmically-satisfying edge to it, by virtue of the very thing the newspapers want physically requiring the very thing they complain about. In Amazon's case, a bit less of a clear-cut "Ha-ha!", but still just an absurd level of entitlement by Hachette.

2 days ago
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German Publishers Capitulate, Let Google Post News Snippets

pla Re:No, wait, do-over! (95 comments)

Beat me to it.

As I said - Rational thought just seems to hit a brick wall when you mention the likes of Amazon and Google. Free advertising becomes stealing (free) content; one-on-one vendor negotiation becomes collusion.

2 days ago
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The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

pla Re:The internet is for porn. (546 comments)

This one will do nicely, thanks.

Whoosh!


You're going to be the one who'll have to leave, unless you grow up and decide to join the civilized community. :)

Have fun finding enough people to fix it when it breaks. :)

Nah, just screwing with you. Sure, you can have this one, we'll gladly take your money to keep the ol' girl running as an echo chamber as looong as you want. We'll just make our own new and improved (and you-less) fork, while yours slowly devolves into "TV v.2"

2 days ago
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German Publishers Capitulate, Let Google Post News Snippets

pla Re:Free aggregation? A problem? (95 comments)

I'm trying to wrap my brain around how these news outlets thought it was bad for Google to send traffic their way.

Because they myopically stop thinking at "Google steals our content, grar!"

On a somewhat more excusable level, they just haven't yet come to terms with how people read news today. People (under 60) don't casually read the whole newspaper over breakfast anymore; they go to a news aggregation site and skim the headlines. When they find something of interest, they click through to read more - But, they don't necessarily click through to the Nowheresville Tribute, they click through to WaPo or NYT, or perhaps to a media outlet that focuses more on a preferred aspect of most stories (for example, reading about German newspaper contractual negotiations at Slashdot vs reading about them at Groklaw vs reading about them in Time).

2 days ago
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German Publishers Capitulate, Let Google Post News Snippets

pla No, wait, do-over! (95 comments)

"Wait wait wait! We still want the free advertising that comes from Google's use of our content! We just want Google to pay us for the privilege of giving us a service we would otherwise have to pay for, in exchange for displaying content we already give away for free online!"

Sad. I get so sick of people griping about the effects of Amazon and Google (etc), without giving a second thought to just how much they already get in return for the relationship. Same idea goes for Amazon and Hachette - They have every right to refuse to sell at the price Amazon wants; they'll just never sell another eBook.

2 days ago
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The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

pla Re:Semantics (546 comments)

I agree, but what is your point? We should ignore sexual harassment because the police and society are bad at dealing with it? Shouldn't we try to fix that?

Did I say anything about ignoring it?

The great-most-parent of this thread wrote:

The definition of harassment, at least where I live, is "unwanted sexual advances", meaning the distinction between flirting and harassment is purely based on subjective experience.

You responded to a clarification that referenced a specific country's (Norway's) wording, to claim that one of two equally subjective words ("troublesome") made it just peachy that we had a victim-subjective law.

I disagree with your assertion. That doesn't mean I approve of sexual harassment in the workplace; rather, that if we want people to take it seriously, we need to come up with a reasonably objective metric that doesn't reduce to "don't behave in a way that might offend the most fragile person around you, oh and BTW you won't that threshold until you've crossed it".


As for whether or not people really think like that - I have seriously gotten into arguments with SJWs over whether or not merely complimenting (once, politely and legitimately, not talking about catcalls and shouting "nice tits" at every woman walking by) a stranger in a public place counts as "harassment", only to endure a subsequent rant of "imagine if you had to put up with that everywhere you went, no matter what you did, whether you wanted it or not". Hmm. Yeah, people complimenting me too often, you poor, poor thing! Consider me properly chastised, yup.

2 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: Smarter Disk Space Monitoring In the Age of Cheap Storage?

pla We have more but we USE more. (170 comments)

Today, however, with a lot of file systems in the Terabyte range, a 90-95% full file system can still have a considerable amount of free space but we still mostly get bugged by the same alerts as in the days of yore when there really isn't a cause for immediate concern.

When we had drives in the 100s of MB range, we used a few MB at a time. Now that we have drives in the multi-TB range, we tend to use tens of GB at a time. In my experiences, a 90 percent full drive has as much time left before running out as it did a decade ago.

Perhaps more importantly, running at 90% of capacity kills your performance if you still use spinning glass platters as your primary storage medium (not so much when talking about a SAN of SSDs). In general, when you hit 90% full, you have problems other than just how long you can last before reaching 100%.

2 days ago
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The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

pla Re:No chance (546 comments)

Seems like you are likening legitimate issues to trolling. Busting down barriers for women's rights and segregation are valid. Comparing trolling grammar to suffrage is a bit of a leap.

Tough to blame that on the parent post, when the FP made that particular leap for us right out of the gate.

2 days ago
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The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

pla Re:Semantics (546 comments)

No, first a police officer, then a public prosecutor and finally a jury of your peers define the conditions under which it is considered sexual harassment.

By the time you get to "police", the accused has already lost his (or her) job, because employers hate dealing with shit like this but can't risk looking soft on harassment.

So as I said, wake of ruined lives while the Violets struggle to figure out why every man they meet runs screaming from them as a sign of unwanted affection.

2 days ago
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The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

pla The internet is for porn. (546 comments)

Too many people do too much online for things to stay the way they are

If you don't like it, leave and get a new internet.

2 days ago
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The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

pla Re:Semantics (546 comments)

So the GP missed the key point there, which is that it has to be both unwelcome and troublesome.

No, you missed the point that the "victim" defines both of those conditions subjectively.

With normal, socially-well-adjusted folks, that doesn't really present a problem. At the one extreme, however, we have the chronic harasser who really sees nothing wrong with friendly backrubs at work; at the other, we have "professional victims" who get to ruin as many lives in their wake as they want. Both of those extremes make such definitions unworkable in any fair and objective system of justice.


it's only once it starts causing them trouble (like being very persistent when she has clearly rebuffed you) that it turns into sexual harassment.

The fact that you needed to clarify the meaning of "troublesome", as you interpret it, nicely illustrates the real problem here.

2 days ago

Submissions

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French anti-piracy logo uses pirated fonts

pla pla writes  |  more than 4 years ago

pla (258480) writes "Cory Doctorow reports (and FontFeed confirms, with better fact-checking) that the French governmental agency in charge of enforcing their new "Three Strikes" Law, Hadopi, has made use of not just one, but two unlicensed fonts in their official logo.

One of these, "Bienvenue", exists only as a privately owned font designed exclusively for France Telecom with no licensing terms available whatsoever. Hadopi claims they never intended that version of the logo for release — Despite having registered it (complete with infringing fonts) as a trademark two months ago. For the other font used in their logo (including both the original and the replacement), "Bliss", they didn't purchase a license to use it until the very day they found it necessary to release a non-infringing replacement logo."

Journals

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Call me paranoid, but...

pla pla writes  |  more than 8 years ago So today I posted a little off-the-cuff comment about parenting and video-games... Nothing major, though undeniably strongly opinionated. Agree or disagree as you will - Not the point of this journal entry.

First mod to it, troll. Okay, I think, I've gotten an awfully lot of those lately to posts I clearly didn't mean as trolling or flamebait, but whatever, perhaps I have an anti-fanboi.

Then later, I got two interestings and an insightful. Okay, not bad, that at least pushes me up to a +2, which with my karma bonus gives a total score of 4. Which it did indeed show.


Now, a few hours later I check back again, and see a total score of two, still with the same breakdown of a troll, an insightful, and two interestings. Biggest difference, my karma bonus has vanished (though my account still shows me as having excellent karma, so not like I magically lost my good karma between 4:30pm and 8:15pm).


So... As the subject line says, "call me paranoid, but" who has the power to change that? Do we have editors seriously abusing their powers, going around making Slashdot's moderation system even less meaningful than its normal, defective, modstorm-prone state?


I'd really like to know... I've written 1858 posts to Slashdot in the past few years, on the presumption that, except for the Gods correcting truly egregious abuses, the moderation system at least works at face value. If every slave-labor underling working at /. can just up and steal karma from posts that hit on one of their peeves, I'd like to know not to waste any more of my life contributing to a lost cause...

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Interesting ratings...

pla pla writes  |  more than 11 years ago "Score:-1, Insightful"

I can only say, "WTF"? How does an insightful comment get a -1?

Heh. If I took this seriously, I might feel somewhat concerned by the logic behind that.

Overall, though, I find it more *amusing* that one person's "insightful" equals another's "flamebait" or "troll". I can understand reduntant, or overrated, but flamebait and troll seem mutually exclusive from any positive mods whatsoever.

Strange world we live in. Well... No, just strange people in it. ;-)

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Wow, I have fans! (And freaks...)

pla pla writes  |  more than 11 years ago So, my first /. journal entry. Forgive the me-centric nature of it, but I just spent a few minutes wandering around my preferences page, and noticed all sorts of cool things.

Most interestingly, I actually have fans and freaks! Eerie.

I don't quite know *how* I got them, since I did a quick perusal of their posting history, and we don't seem to have any obvious threads in common. Do people just randomly add others to their friends and foes list?

Oh, and I seem to have moderator points once again. In all the years I've used Slashdot, I got my first moderator points only a few months ago. Now, this latest set of points makes my third (fourth?) time.

So, in other news, I managed to get a comment of mine modded out of existance today. So what have I learned from slashdot? One, don't say anything bad about Apple - those fans get *vicious*, even about very guarded criticism. And two, in a forum of mostly geeks, don't attack science (the institution, not the techniques) as little more than a modern religion, complete with priests, acolytes, and inviolable holy doctrine.

Hmm, okay. I guess I'll stop now.

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