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Administration Ordered To Divulge Legal Basis For Killing Americans With Drones

shutdown -p now Re:Confederates (309 comments)

Who decides what constitutes "openly waging war"?

yesterday
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Administration Ordered To Divulge Legal Basis For Killing Americans With Drones

shutdown -p now Re:Obligatory (309 comments)

I hear the recent developments on the subject is that you just redraw the border in the more convenient way.

yesterday
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Next-Gen Thunderbolt: Twice as Fast, But a Different Connector

shutdown -p now Re:New connector great thanks (159 comments)

Yet every single device in my house (by half a dozen different manufacturers), with the sole exception of those made by Apple, uses a single USB plug to connect and charge. Explain that.

2 days ago
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VK CEO Fired, Says Company Under Kremlin Control

shutdown -p now This comes shortly after (146 comments)

The Russian state demanded that VK release info on (Ukrainian) users who used VK to organize Euromaidan protests. Durov told them to go fuck themselves.

Now not only he's fired, but he left Russia, and he went on record saying that he has no intent of returning. Can't blame him. I had to go there on a two-week business trip, and I always had that nagging thought of shit hitting the fan while I'm on the wrong side of the border (since I'm still a Russian citizen, it would probably result in me ending up as a conscript somewhere in a trench in Ukraine).

2 days ago
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VK CEO Fired, Says Company Under Kremlin Control

shutdown -p now Re:Surprised? (146 comments)

To be more specific, they're using a blend of ultra-patriotism and religious traditionalism (not one specific religion, but whatever's traditional for various ethnic groups within Russia - i.e. Eastern Orthodoxy for Russians, Islam for Tatars etc) as the new state ideology.

2 days ago
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Supreme Court Upholds Michigan's Ban On Affirmative Action In College Admissions

shutdown -p now Re:Not really needed anymore. (387 comments)

The average wait for a white person to vote in Michigan is 7 minutes. The average wait for a black person to vote in Michigan is 46 minutes.

Is there a causative link here, though, or is it just correlation?

Say, what is the average wait time for a poor white person to vote in Michigan?

2 days ago
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Supreme Court OKs Stop and Search Based On Anonymous 911 Tips

shutdown -p now Re:Anybody know the plate# for each scotus? (451 comments)

I am a self-identified liberal (albeit with a libertarian bent).

Scalia's dissent on this particular issue is entirely correct.

His opinions on many other issues (such as sodomy laws or abortion) are still entirely wrong. And, as a person, he is still a complete and utter asshole, though.

2 days ago
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Detroit: America's Next Tech Boomtown

shutdown -p now Re:do they have a progressive view? (336 comments)

No matter how you twist it, something like 80% of techies are solidly liberal/progressive, judging by their political donations.

Last I checked, Texas was neither liberal nor progressive in practically any sense of the word.

5 days ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:Militia, then vs now (1617 comments)

in Australia the gun ban has 90% popular support

And in Afghanistan, the idea that a person renouncing Islam should be put to death, or that it is okay to marry girls at age 9, also enjoys 90% popular support. So what?

"There had been 11 gun massacres in the decade preceding 1996, but there have been no mass shootings since. "

Yet murder rate did not change significantly - it kept going down at the same rate as before the last ban.

(which is because those massacres are a statistically insignificant event, basically)

documented that after the laws were changed, the risk of an Australian being killed by a gun fell by more than 50 percent.

Yet again, one of those bullshit "by a gun" statistics. Who cares about a subset of murders where guns specifically are used? What matters is the overall murder rate regardless of tools. That did not show any correlation to gun bans.

Australia’s gun homicide rate, 0.13 per 100,000 people, according to GunPolicy.org, is a tiny fraction of that of the United States (3.6 per 100,000 people).

Another pointless "gun ..." stat.

BTW, it's true that Australia (and most other First World countries) has an overall lower homicide rate, and generally violent crime rate. But that has to do with the different approach to healthcare and other forms of welfare in US, which results in significantly higher income inequality, stratification, high poverty rates and low social mobility - which translates to more crime. Guns don't really play any role in this, as is evident when looking at crime rates within US - they correlate strongly with poverty, and not at all with lax/strict gun laws.

It should be noted that our gun homicide rates were already in decline, but the gun laws accelerated that slide."

Another pointless "gun ..." stat. As noted before, the overall homicide rate was going down before the bans, and kept going down after them at the same rate - i.e. the decline was caused by other factors. It should be noted that this is a trend that is observed in all Western countries, including US, and in the latter said decline does not correlate with gun law changes (like AWB).

In a 2010 paper, economists Andrew Leigh and Christine Neill found that the law change had led to a 65 percent decline in the rate of firearm suicides. Firearm homicides fell by 59 percent.

Another pointless "gun ..." stat. The overall suicide rate did not change, people just used different methods (hangings in particular spiked as firearm suicides dropped).

The US is an exceptionally dangerous place to live - to be at more risk, you have to go to countries in complete anarchy or at war.

This is an utterly stupid statement. You are much more likely to be shot in my home country - Russia - that despite it not being even remotely "in complete anarchy or war" - and despite the much more stringent gun laws, which are only marginally more liberal than Australian ones. Heck, US has lower homicide rates than a good half of Europe.

Then, of course, the rate varies wildly within US from state to state, so much so that the average is meaningless. In my state of residence, it's the same as in Finland and Norway, and it's not some kind of rural depopulated place.

5 days ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:Militia, then vs now (1617 comments)

Yet the overall murder rate trend did not change appreciably - despite the fact that it should have included those massacres. In fact, it briefly went up after the ban, despite there being a massacre immediately before the ban...

Which, I suppose, just goes to show just how small and insignificant those massacres are in the big picture, if you take the media attention they receive out of the equation and look at raw numbers. Yet people keep referring to them as some major factor that should be a significant driver of public policy. It's about as ridiculous as the security theater that followed 9/11.

about a week ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:Democracy? (1617 comments)

We elect people. They represent us. If we don't like the way they are representing us, we elect someone else. That is how government works in a democracy. So when you suggest that we need to be armed in order to protect ourselves against our government, what you are doing is suggesting possible violence against the people that WE elected.

Well, except that due to the way the US electoral system works, it's possible to get elected without having a majority. Heck, it's possible for 1/4 of the country population to amend the Constitution over the heads of the other 3/4 if they gang up!

So much for democracy.

And then, of course, a state can be a democracy today, and a dictatorship tomorrow. Germans found that out the hard way back in 1933.

about a week ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:But what is a militia? (1617 comments)

Perhaps someone should sue the feds and demand that this law is reworded to be gender-neutral, as it is clearly discriminatory with no good reason.

about a week ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:Militia, then vs now (1617 comments)

Use Lojban. A language explicitly designed for clarity and lack of ambiguity (you can be ambiguous in it, but any ambiguity is explicit).

about a week ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:Militia, then vs now (1617 comments)

That makes no sense. Are you saying that freedom of speech is not a fundamental right? Perhaps you don't think it is, but the people who wrote the Constitution and the Bill of Rights certainly considered it a natural right - and yet they codified it.

The reason why is very simple. Bill of Rights, for the most part, is the codification of those natural rights that were actually threatened or infringed immediately before or during the American Revolution. Hence why they were deemed to be the most vulnerable, and therefore most deserving of the extra degree of protection that codifying them would yield. That's why BoR has some really weird stuff, like a separate amendment about "quartering soldiers" - because that's precisely what the British did.

about a week ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:Militia, then vs now (1617 comments)

The overall trend has been down both before and after, actually. Basically, the ban had zero measurable effect.

about a week ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:Militia, then vs now (1617 comments)

Jefferson actually thought that the entire government (including the Constitution) should be thrown out once per generation, because it would be immoral for one generation to legally bind the ones that follow it.

about a week ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:Militia, then vs now (1617 comments)

Mosins used rimmed rounds as well, though.

(in fact, a lot of Russian military firearms still do - PK, SVD etc)

about a week ago
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Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

shutdown -p now Re:Militia, then vs now (1617 comments)

First of all, "gun death", "gun suicide", "gun crime" etc are all completely meaningless metric. A murder is a murder, regardless of the tool used to carry it out; ditto for suicide. The only thing that matters is the overall number of crimes, suicides etc.

Now, one thing that you conveniently forgot to mention is that murder rates, violent crime rates etc were all dropping in Australia before the ban, as well. And after a brief post-ban spike (which was likely completely unrelated), they kept dropping at the same rate.

Same thing for suicides. Yes, gun suicides have dropped, but hangings were on the rise (in fact, there was also a spike right after the ban, such that the overall suicide rate was higher - despite the reduction in the number of gun suicides) - and overall suicide rate is basically going down at the same rate as before.

In other words, one thing that Australian statistics shows is that gun ban had zero effect whatsoever on murder rate, violent crime rate, or suicide rate.

about a week ago
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The GNOME Foundation Is Running Out of Money

shutdown -p now GPL vs LGPL (693 comments)

Not quite. Gtk and Gnome appeared because Qt was originally proprietary. The reason why Gnome became "the default", though, was because enterprise distros like RedHat pushed for it - and that was because Gtk and Gnome were both LGPL, so closed-source software could link against them. This was not the case with Qt, which was open sourced for a long time, but was GPL rather than LGPL.

about two weeks ago
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The New 'One Microsoft' Is Finally Poised For the Future

shutdown -p now Re:That's not the only thing that's gone... (270 comments)

Their motto of "Developers, Developers, Developers" also disappeared with Ballmer's exit. Everything is now getting locked down to the max in their attempt to be like Apple.

If by this you mean the various limitations surrounding Windows Store (aka "Metro") apps, then those happened very much under Ballmer. Hell, the guy have only just recently left, so what exactly has disappeared since then?

At the same time, Satya was heading Cloud & Enterprise business before becoming CEO. And C&E, among other things, includes DevDiv - and Satya has a lot of supporters there. Furthermore, note the meteoric rise of Scott Guthrie, who was always one of the more passionate advocates of a solid and modern developer story for MS (in particular, embracing F/OSS).

about two weeks ago

Submissions

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Microsoft adds Node.js support to Visual Studio

shutdown -p now shutdown -p now writes  |  about 5 months ago

shutdown -p now (807394) writes "Coming from the team that had previously brought you Python Tools for Visual Studio, Microsoft has announced Node.js Tools for Visual Studio, with the release of the first public alpha. NTVS is the official extension for Visual Studio that adds support for Node.js, including editing with Intellisense, debugging, profiling, and the ability to deploy Node.js websites to Windows Azure. An overview video showcases the features, and Scott Hanselman has a detailed walkthrough.

The project is open source under Apache License 2.0. While the extension is published by Microsoft, it is a collaborative effort involving Microsoft, Red Gate (which previously had a private beta version of similar product called Visual Node), and individual contributors from the Node.js community."

Link to Original Source
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Python Tools for Visual Studio 2.0 Beta Released

shutdown -p now shutdown -p now writes  |  about 10 months ago

shutdown -p now (807394) writes "My team at Microsoft, which works on Python Tools for Visual Studio — a free, open source extension for Visual Studio that adds support for Python to that IDE — has just shipped a beta version of the upcoming 2.0 release with numerous new features and improvements.

PTVS supports most Python interpreters including CPython, advanced code completion, debugging, and profiling. Some highlights of this release are mixed-mode debugging of Python and C/C++ code with integrated call stacks, stepping and breakpoints; the ability to remotely attach to and debug Python programs running on Linux and OS X; and Django support with ability to conveniently deploy Django websites and services to Windows Azure.

PTVS works with Visual Studio 2010, 2012 and 2013 Preview, as well as the free Visual Studio Shell."

Link to Original Source
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Code from Microsoft submitted to jQuery

shutdown -p now shutdown -p now writes  |  more than 3 years ago

shutdown -p now (807394) writes "Microsoft has previously announced its support for jQuery JavaScript client framework when it started bundling it with Visual Studio back in 2008. Since then, Microsoft developers, in direct cooperation with the core jQuery team and the community, have developed three new plugins — Templates, DataLink and Globalization. Today, this contribution has finally found its way upstream into the main jQuery code base, and will be included into the upcoming 1.5 release. As all other jQuery code, the plugins are dual-licensed under MIT and GPLv2, making it another rare case of Microsoft contributing code to an Open Source project under the GPL."
Link to Original Source
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Windows Phone 7 Series - Developer Perspective

shutdown -p now shutdown -p now writes  |  more than 4 years ago

shutdown -p now writes "As previously promised, at MIX10 developer conference, Microsoft has released details about the development side of the upcoming Windows Phone 7 Series.

It is now confirmed that two frameworks for application development will be XNA for games and game-like fullscreen, high-performance applications, and a subset of Silverlight 3 for everything else. Both frameworks support managed .NET code only — no native (C++) code support. Furthermore, the applications are sandboxed, and "unsafe" functionality, such as P/Invoke, is not available. A fairly detailed set of UI guidelines for developers has been made available as well.

The integrated web browser is claimed to be based on Internet Explorer 7 engine with some extra features, such as proper XHTML support.

An single centralized store will be available, called the Marketplace. It will include both applications and other media (such as music). The Marketplace will be the only way to install applications onto the phone (though, supposedly, "enterprise customers" will have some workaround). There will be an approval process for publishing applications on the Marketplace, and, aside from filtering out malware, it will also require that applications are "generally good taste excluding pornography, hateful/inflammatory speech, and gratuitous violence".

On the hardware side, the specifications will be tightly controlled for the benefit of developers. A standard set of hardware buttons is mandated on all phones ("Back", "Home" and "Search"). Screen size is limited to two standard resolutions: 320x480, and 480x800, and touchscreen must be capacitive, with at least 4-point multi-touch. Other requirements hardware requirements include 3D acceleration, GPS, and accelerometer.

Unlike past mobile SDK releases from Microsoft, a free version of development tools for Windows Phone will be available, named "Visual Studio 2010 Express for Windows Phone". A preview of that is presently available, complete with an emulator. In the future, a mobile-oriented version of Expression Blend 4, a designer-centric development tool, will also be available."

Link to Original Source
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Microsoft Office 2007 SP2 Released, Supports ODF

shutdown -p now shutdown -p now writes  |  more than 4 years ago

shutdown -p now writes "On April, 2008, Microsoft has released service pack 2 for Microsoft Office 2007. Among other changes, it includes the earlier-promised support for ODF text documents and spreadsheets, featured prominently on the "Save As" menu alongside Office Open XML and the legacy Office 97-2007 formats. It is also possible to configure Office applications to use ODF as the default format for new documents.

In addition, the service pack also includes "Save as PDF" out of the box, and better Firefox support by SharePoint."

Link to Original Source
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ISO publishes final Open XML specification

shutdown -p now shutdown -p now writes  |  more than 5 years ago

shutdown -p now writes "ISO/IEC 29500:2008, better known as Office Open XML, is now a published ISO International Standard. Major changes since last public drafts include splitting the standard into "strict conformance" and "transitional conformance" parts, with all the Microsoft Office compatibility hacks going into the latter, "for Office Open XML consumers and producers that comply to the transitional conformance category ... provide support for legacy Microsoft Office applications". The complete standard, including the transitional part, is still rather unwieldy at 7,228 pages; of those, the transitional elements take up only 1,475 pages.

In addition, the ISO press release explicitly references something called "Microsoft Office 2008" at least one time. Presumably, it would be a Microsoft Office release fully compliant with the newly released specification in its final form; however, there haven't been any announcements from Microsoft about a product named "Office 2008" yet."

Link to Original Source
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Exploits generated autpmatically from patches

shutdown -p now shutdown -p now writes  |  more than 5 years ago

shutdown -p now writes "A group of researchers wrote a paper (PDF) on automatic generation of exploits from security patches. It works by performing flow analysis on the code that is changed by the code to find the boundary conditions that lead to vulnerability in an unpatched version. It's not just theory, either: they have successfully generated exploits for 5 known vulnerabilities in Microsoft products using their algorithm. The authors note that a successful attack using this method is particularly likely when vendor deliberately delays releasing security patches to the general public, to push them in a single bundle on a regular schedule — as is the case with Windows Update and its infamous Patch Tuesday."
Link to Original Source

Journals

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Contact me

shutdown -p now shutdown -p now writes  |  more than 2 years ago

If you want to contact me without spamming article discussions (i.e. if you're new here), just reply to this post.

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