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Too Much Privacy: Finnish Police Want Big Euro Notes Taken Out of Circulation

vakuona Re:GBP50 = 63 Euro (314 comments)

Tap to pay is supposed to be for low value transactions. The thinking behind it is that you accept the risk of small losses for the convenience of being able to pay without having to enter you pin each time. Makes things like buying your lunch easier/quicker.

There is supposed to be an absolute limit to the losses you can incur, if any. As far as I am aware, you are not liable for losses if your card is stolen, provided you report it stolen.

5 days ago
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Too Much Privacy: Finnish Police Want Big Euro Notes Taken Out of Circulation

vakuona Re:To their defense (314 comments)

If your money is in a bank account, you can use a direct transfer, or maybe even your debit card. You might need to call your bank to verify, or your bank might call you if they think the transaction might be suspicious.

5 days ago
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Elon Musk: We Must Put a Million People On Mars To Safeguard Humanity

vakuona Re:Mars has no magnetosphere (549 comments)

If we can create a colony on Mars, then we we will have the technology to create survival cells on Earth that would withstand asteroid impacts.

To survive on Mars, we don't just need people, we need to take with us animals, plants, insects, bacteria, etc. All of that would be very expensive. However, we could build deep enough "shafts" here on earth and trivially move all plant/animal life that we require to survive, and all without the ridiculous expense of having to try move everything we require a distance of 225m km.

It would be far easier for us to develop a survival cell with the bare minimum of what we require, and then go foraging on an uninhabitable surface for minerals etc on the earth that we already know well, than it is to bet on the availability of everything we would need to depend on on Mars.

about a week ago
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Where Intel Processors Fail At Math (Again)

vakuona Re:Exact mathematical value isn't the ideal (238 comments)

They can. But they make tradeoffs because computers are expected to do the same calculations much faster (or were in the past, and now have to keep making the same mistakes for compatibility reasons).

about two weeks ago
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Texas Ebola Patient Dies

vakuona Re:The Conservative Option (479 comments)

Not true. Ebola is not infectious until it is symptomatic. That, with the long lead time to becoming symptomatic makes it easier to contain. Just monitor anyone who was in contact with a sufferer for at least 21 days. if they become symptomatic, then quarantine else leave them be.

about two weeks ago
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Why the FCC Will Probably Ignore the Public On Network Neutrality

vakuona Re:Expected (336 comments)

s/undying loyalty yo/undying loyalty to/

about two weeks ago
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Why the FCC Will Probably Ignore the Public On Network Neutrality

vakuona Re:Expected (336 comments)

The reason that former Rogers/Bell/Telus executive wind up at the regulators is because they understand the issue, and not because they have somehow sworn undying loyalty yo their previous employers.

The implication is as absurd as the implication that once one has worked as a criminal lawyer, they cannot be trusted to prosecute criminals as a public prosecutor.

about two weeks ago
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US Navy Develops Robot Boat Swarm To Overwhelm Enemies

vakuona Re:Seems risky. (142 comments)

You can encrypt the signal and have a key that is constantly renewed so that any signal/key that has already been used once cannot be used again. That way, anyone who doesn't have the correct original key/keys can never take control of the autonomous craft.

about two weeks ago
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Will Apple Lose Siri's Core Tech To Samsung?

vakuona Re:Tech Companies have become warring fiefdoms (161 comments)

They are not building clones. That would imply they are building cars that would pass for BMWs and Volvos. (Incidentally, Volvo is now Chinese owned, so that would be a interesting fight).

Their cars only look like BMWs and Volvos, but are nowhere near the quality.

about two weeks ago
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BBC and FACT Shut Down Doctor Who Fansite

vakuona Re:Regrets (186 comments)

Public property doesn't mean you get to do what ever you want with it any more than buying a few share in Microsoft would entitle you to demand the access to Windows source code.

It is a license fee. You get a license to watch telly, not to own all the media.

about 2 months ago
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BBC and FACT Shut Down Doctor Who Fansite

vakuona Re:Anyone know what, exactly, was the issue? (186 comments)

BBC original series tend to stay on iPlayer for long enough. It's the series that are not BBC original that tend to stay shortest.

about 2 months ago
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Study: Ad-Free Internet Would Cost Everyone $230-a-Year

vakuona Re:I'd pay for it in a heartbeat! (611 comments)

It could exist without advertising. But it doesn't. I am goingto go out on a limb here, but it might be because it is bloody expensive to set up and maintain a good search engine without spending lots of money, and the users would not be willing to pay that money directly, so Google really needed the advertising to make money.

The fact that the engine came before the monetization is irrelevant and somewhat facile. Of course the produce comes first. They could hardly advertise anything before they had a search engine now could they?

That is why they got investors and they licensed their tech to Yahoo who......drumroll please...made money off advertising. So advertising paid for Google by rewarding the investors afet the fact, and by the simple fact that Google was licensing their tech to firms who depended on advertising for revenue.

about 2 months ago
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Delaware Enacts Law Allowing Heirs To Access Digital Assets of Deceased

vakuona Re:Steamed (82 comments)

They won't be. It would be ridiculously easy to make it economically unattractive for someone to take over an account, for example, by including a discretionary discount in the account that is removed upon death.

Alternatively, they could just get their customers to agree to new T&Cs specifically stating that the contract ends on their death.

Google already has a feature where they ask people to specify what happens to their accounts on their death. I can't see law trumping the express wish of the deceased.

about 2 months ago
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Xiaomi's Next OS Looks Strikingly Similar To iOS

vakuona Re:I don't see it.... (181 comments)

Which Android device did you think all the screenshots looked like? If you were referring to any Android maker besides Xiaomi, then I may have agreed. But we are talking about the one company that has copied Apple right down to the "One More Thing" slide, in a presentation that was all in Chinese no less.

These guys could not be more shameless about copying if they tried. But in case you haven't been able to pick up how they aped Apple. I will give you a few examples.

The Calender App is quite blatantly a copy of the iOS one in look (I couldn't say anything about the feel and how it works). Right down to the colour scheme.

The icons are all straight out of the Apple playbook. Borderless rounded-corner squares with a symbol in the middle. Android icons tend not to have any border around the "symbol". Not even Samsung ones, which have been fairly blatant in the past.

They even have the row of fixed icons at the bottom a la Apple. No, not the usual Back, Home and Menu soft keys on Android. Just a fixed set of four,just like Apple. It looks like they have ditched the standard soft keys altogether.

The music icon app has the same colour as the Apple one. I can accept that a green icon for a phone is kind of obvious, but to have the same colour for the music player app is more than a coincidence.

Check the colour scheme of the calculator app. Again, quite a blatant copy of Apple's.

The camera app has a round soft button as well. Just like, wait for it, the iOS 7 camera app.

Of course, it is not an exact replica, but at first glance, it could easily fool anyone.

In fact, I challenge anyone to put stock Android (KitKat), iOS and MIUI side by side, and it would be quite clear which two are most alike.

about 2 months ago
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Xiaomi Arrives As Top Smartphone Seller In China

vakuona Re:Good for them (82 comments)

Umm, I don't think the US executes children. I do however think they can execute adults for crimes committed as children.

There is a difference.

about 2 months ago
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Idiot Leaves Driver's Seat In Self-Driving Infiniti, On the Highway

vakuona Re:Huh? (406 comments)

I couldn't agree more. I think any "autonomous" system that requires a driver to keep in the driving seat "just in case" is monumentally stupid. The worst thing a self-driving car could ever do is to attempt to give you control in an emergency situation. It's either completely autonomous, or not at all.

A semi autonomous system is the worst of both worlds. It makes you less aware of the situation and give you control at the worst possible time, wuite possibly when you are asleep behind the wheel.

about 2 months ago
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Amazon Isn't Killing Writing, the Market Is

vakuona Re: "the market" = biz managers (192 comments)

I would add that this year, the most commercially successful movies at the cinema have been Captain America, X-Men, Transformers, Spiderman etc. These movies were not cheap to make. Unimaginative, maybe, but not cheap.

about 2 months ago
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The Billionaire Mathematician

vakuona Re:Reminds me of The Wonderful Burt Wonderstone (96 comments)

Oh yes, Europeans just went to Africa to build pyramids without ever thinking to build any where they came from because, you know, that's just how they rolled. Where in the world has that ever happened?

One of the mummified individuals is found who "may" belong to some ancestral group proves what exactly?

What about the other mummified individuals? What about the carving and elaborate caskets and tombs that show people with distinctly African features? Or is anything that doesn't fit your crackpot theory discarded for being too inconvenient?

about 3 months ago
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The Billionaire Mathematician

vakuona Re:Reminds me of The Wonderful Burt Wonderstone (96 comments)

Let's face it, most people who die of thirst/famine are black and have never in 100,000's years done anything to build a technology to help them to survive. It is not my problem that they are too stupid to figure out how to obtain a continuous and adequate supply of clean water!

Besides the obviously racist connotation, you are seriously misinformed.

They didn't "figure" it out because they didn't have to. They survived millions of years because they developed appropriate technology for their needs. They lived in a much more forgiving climate (except for tropical diseases) which didn't necessitate their developing all these fancy gizmos. Unfortunately, much of Africa is water stressed in ways that many parts of Europe just aren't, and no amount of engineering available until a few decades ago could help you there.

These black people built aqueducts and pyramids in Egypt, and built rather impressive cities all over Africa. Well before anyone else was building anything remotely comparable. So, they (we) are not as useless as you imagine.

about 3 months ago

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