* Posts by Vector

400 posts • joined 21 Feb 2011

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128TB SSD by 2018? Toshiba promises much, delivers ... a little

Vector
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Do consumers need that much storage?

Let's just say I remember a time when 100MB seemed huge and a Terabyte was the awe-inspiring total storage of the datacenter I worked in.

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Xiaomi aims to knock Apple off its branch with move into computers

Vector
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@James O'Shea Re: seriously

Insert "European or American" into every line with won't want it, then re-evaluate your comments.

Xiaomi is probably aiming at the Chinese market which is A) their home turf and B) a little more flexible about what software runs on the hardware.

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Get whimsical and win a Western Digital Black 6TB hard drive

Vector
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And you say they sell millions of these things?

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Windows 10 PC sales boost? Don't hold your breath, say analysts

Vector
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Another correction

" those who have been holding onto their Windows 7 machines are not yet convinced that they want need to invest in a new PC"

This is still the overwhelming issue: Most people have more than enough power to do everything they want so there's just no need to budget for a new PC, no matter how good or bad the new version of the OS is. The quest for power has moved to the mobile world and, even there, it's starting to peter out.

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Use QuickTime … and become part of the collective

Vector
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Re: QuickTime? Is that still a thing?

Yeah, isn't it about time for Quicktime (for Windows, at least) to head down the same path to oblivion that Flash needs to follow?

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BLADE-WIELDING BOTS conquer humans in RADIO DEATHMATCH

Vector
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Re: Not a carpet

It also assumes that A) the user is smart enough to install the system properly and B) that the user won't abuse the markers for fun.

Both highly specious assumptions.

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Police use RIFLE AND TASER to relieve man of iPhone case

Vector
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Which is a far better response than US authorities would have had. They would have stood off 20 feet from him then shot him when he reached for it.

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Vector
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Re: stupid Canadian volunteers to give away rights

</Rant> should probably suffice.

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Cheers, Bill Gates. Who wouldn't want drinking water made from POO?

Vector
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Re: One little problem

"One little problem is that the water from the poo & piss will always be less than the water that the poor people take in"

Now there's a typical modern reaction. "Oh my gawd! It's not perfect! Bin it now!"

A partial solution is far better than no solution at all!

Q: How many guitarists does it take to change a light bulb?

A: Just one. All the rest just watch him and say "I can do better than that."

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Thirty five Flash Player holes plugged (and there's one quick fix)

Vector
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@Mark 65

"The problem is also that there are plenty of educational sites for kids that are paid and mandated by the education system that use flash."

You might show your school district a few articles like this, point out that their continued mandate is putting your privacy and "your children's safety" at risk and suggest that they remove the mandate in the short-term while they find non-Flash alternatives for the long term.

It's long since time for Flash to die!

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Big, ugly, heavy laptops are surprise PC sales sweet spot

Vector
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Re: Why now?

I settle for custom coloring my illuminated keyboard and call it good. Thought about illuminating the fans but then I'd have to get a glass table!

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Vector
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Re: Why now?

"Serious gamers don't have an allowance, we have disposable income. And absolute bloody tunnel vision when it comes to spending it."

That tunnel vision might be your problem. Have you tried a gaming class laptop lately? I'll grant you that they don't have the grunt of a desktop system, but they have plenty 'nuff to play virtually everything out there, albeit, with the settings attenuated a bit. I've enjoyed gaming for decades, do quite a bit of it and for the last decade or so, have been happily doing it on laptops, which I can pack up and take with me to game anywhere I can find a power outlet.

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Update Firefox NOW to foil FILE-STEALING vulnerability exploit, warns Mozilla

Vector
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Re: Update Done

"With Ubuntu (and most Linux distros no doubt), the same updater will also work with third party repos"

Yeah, and it'll really suck if anyone ever poisons one of those third party repos which, at the moment, would be far more likely in a Microsoft implementation than Linux due to the installed base and the (lack of) sophistication of the users.

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Apple goes to crapple in stock plunge kerfaffle: $113bn wiped off in days

Vector
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Re: If Apple were an apple, what kind of apple would Apple be?

Figgurs. Damn 'merkins c'ain't spell nuthin rite!

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Vector
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Re: If Apple were an apple, what kind of apple would Apple be?

Um...a Macintosh.

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Vector
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Re: Ethernet Cash

"Is that 113bn in Dollars & Cents (paper and metal) or 113bn Dollars in Theoretical Money which doesn't actually exist?"

Not sure where you've been the last several decades or so, but "paper and metal" are naught but tokens of the real money, which is all just numbers on a spreadsheet. The US went off the gold standard in 1971. Since then, all US currency has been nothing more than a representation of confidence in the government. I believe this is true of most countries these days. In the US, when a bank goes to the Federal Reserve for a loan, the Fed just moves some decimals around in the computer.

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Windows 10 Start menu replacements shifting like hot cakes

Vector
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"MS claim they've designed all the start menu anyone will need..."

That's because Microsoft, along with the rest of the software world, seems to have forgotten how to ask questions!

It all very nice that they've come up with this new start menu, but why not leave the old versions as well and ask which one people would like to use (just as they did in Windows XP with the classic Start Menu). AFAIC, this should be the case with all new features. Lovely that they're there, I'll decide whether I want them or not, thank you very much. Google is driving me up the wall with exactly this same mentality.

I blame Apple and the whole Steve Jobs philosophy of "user's don't know what they want until we tell them." OK. Show me your new gizmo and let me decide. Don't force me into it because it's more convenient for you!

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Asian worries for Samsung and Apple as local brands chop up the market

Vector
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Chinese Companies taking over a Tech Market..?

Well, gee, that's never happened before (cough, cough)

Here's where we are: Smartphone hardware has reached the point where "flagship" phones are really nothing more than an overpriced extravagance. Apple's ecosystem will buy them some goodwill for a while until the average price of a decent mid-range phone sinks to somewhere between half to a third of the price of their current offering. Samsung and all the other major Android makers are just on the way out.

This is precisely what happened in the PC market. IBM and all the other "Big Boys" were eventually supplanted by Taiwanese manufacturers like Acer and Asus, who destroyed their market by driving the margins down to 3-5%.

Virtually all the current big name Tech companies are products of the PC market. A few, like Sony, managed to re-emerge after lying fallow for many years, but most, like NEC and Digital Equipment Corp, have either exited the market or exited business altogether.

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How much of ONE YEAR's Californian energy use would WIPE OUT the DROUGHT?

Vector
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Re: Small issue of infrastructure @ AC

"Also not included is that with proper waste water treatment you can use the same water several times over..."

Actually, as the extent of the drought began to take hold in the press, "toilet to tap" was getting quite a bit of coverage, particularly for the "eww" factor. I found it pretty funny since, in reality, most water was waste water at some point. It just gets cleaned up by the environment most of the time. Short cutting that process sounds perfectly reasonable to me with the right controls in place.

As to the rest of the conversation: typical. "It'll never happen because politics!" So let's all just bury our heads because we can't do nuthin.

I've always found talk of water shortages silly because, as pointed out in the article, there's plenty of water around, it just needs a little processing to be usable. So let's put our techno-industrial minds to work and get it done.

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Windows 10 marks the end of 'pay once, use forever' software

Vector
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Re: 'Pay once, use forever'...?

"Just look at Photoshop and you're looking at the future, bleak as it is."

That might work for Adobe, but I suspect Microsoft will find it tougher going. Why? Because Operating Systems are passe and there are options out there to get around the subscription model (see above regarding Linux distros). If MS tries subscriptions and gets it wrong, they'll see their market collapse as the world moves on to other options.

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Wanted: beta testers for El Reg’s Android app

Vector
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Re: this isn't for the likes of you

"Mobile doesn't show icons, doesn't let you put an icon on your post, and doesn't let you edit..."

That would be a deficiency in the coding of the mobile website, not a requirement for developing an app.

I'm with the many other voices here; dump the mobile apps and concentrate on the mobile website. If people want offline reading, I suspect a little thought could make that possible from the mobile website (it is all just data, ya know).

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Will the PC glory days ever return, WD asks as its finances slip

Vector
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Re: Density play only

Spinning rust does have the reliability edge still, but if this new technology from Intel/Micron lives up to the hype, then that goes out the door too once the technology scales and the price falls (as is inevitable).

Personally, I just don't see an uptick in consumer desktop sales left. With "good enough" laptops in the $300-$400 range, there's just not that much impetus left to get a desktop system. They're probably about to be relegated to the enterprise desktop until mobile devices become flexible enough to make that pointless as well.

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Alien dwarf 'star' flashes her dazzling brown rear at stunned space boffins

Vector
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"flashes her dazzling brown rear..."

So...just how do you tell a star's rear from the rest of it?

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Got an Android phone? SMASH IT with a hammer – and do it NOW

Vector
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I wondering what legal remedies might be available. Since you bought the phone with a tacit understanding that it would be functional for some period of time, and this vulnerability could compromise your financial information, if nothing else (certainly your personal information), failure to correct it might leave manufacturers/carriers liable. But, of course, IANAL. Any IAAL's want to chime in?

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Take off, eh, you Uber: Ontario lobs $300m lawsuit at cab app biz

Vector
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FAIL

Re: Taxi laws are a

"There is NOTHING different between the functionality of any ride sharing app and putting a sign on a company bulletin board asking for riders; besides the form of communications being used."

Yes, there is. In a word: payment!

The moment you start accepting payment, you become a commercial service. When you engage in commerce in a regulated industry while disregarding the regulations, then you are operating illegally.

As I've said before, the regulations governing cars-for-hire (as well as other industries affected by the sharing economy) are probably in need of review and revision. That doesn't give companies like Uber a free hand to just do as they please. Not all those regulations are protectionist of the incumbents in the industry.

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NASA: 'Closest thing yet to ANOTHER EARTH' - FOUND

Vector
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Re: Jinxed

Yeah, we'd need more than "a new form of propulsion" to get to it. It'd have to be more like a wormhole or some Stargate-y portal thing.

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Robot surgeons kill 144 patients, hurt 1,391, malfunction 8,061 times

Vector
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WTF?

There is so much wrong with this article! It's a real headline grabber, but do the numbers really hold up? It quotes the study as saying "a non-negligible number of technical difficulties and complications are still being experienced during procedures" yet 10 deaths and 100 injuries in about 288000 surgeries sound like fairly low numbers. How does this compare with humans performing the same procedures? Yes, some of the issues seem astoundingly stupid, but then, so does leaving surgical instruments in patients and that seems to happen as well.

...And, no, I don't want to be the one under the knife when something goes wrong, but then, I also don't want to be in the car when the brakes fail, but I still drive.

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Neil Young yanks music from streaming services: 'Worst audio in history'

Vector
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Joke

Oh! Is that why I can't understand Neil Young when he sings?

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Google says its AI will jetwash all traces of malodorous spam from your box

Vector
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Re: Meh

"Do you have something else, more meaningful, to add to your critique..."

I don't believe much more is necessary. Your description of how easy is was for you to setup the server ignores the fact that the average person can barely register a domain, much less find StackOverflow and know what questions to ask and know how to interpret the answers.

As to "financials," yes, £35 per month sounds like a fair bit of disposable income to lay out for email. I'm sure in your case, the outlay covers more than that, but most people aren't running websites or have any other need for the infrastructure required to have their own little pocket email server.

You are living in the ivory tower of technology because you, as most of the readers here (including myself), love it and use it on a daily basis. The vast majority of the rest of the world has other interests on which to spend their time and money.

I once had a colleague who was up in arms because his users just didn't care enough about their computers. I asked him how he felt about his chair. He responded that it was just a chair. I told him that to an ergonomics specialist, that chair was a finely tuned tool that should be carefully adjusted to maximize health and efficiency. We know and love computers, but to everyone else, they're just another tool.

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Vector
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Re: Meh

"I do not understand why people are downvoting this comment."

OK, I'll tell you why I downvoted it: the smug attitude.

It all very nice that Ms. Smythe has the technical wherewithal to create such a robust solution, but the rest of the world needs email as well and while Gmail is far from perfect (personally, not a big fan, but I use it for a few things, mainly, as a spam bucket, but, then, I have my own domain(s) as well), this is at least an attempt to ameliorate the monster that spam has become. Most people don't have the technical skills and/or financial means to setup and, more importantly, maintain their own email server.

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AWS opens gate to fondleslabs-as-a-service farm

Vector
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Already been done (and done and...)

The only thing that's new in this article is that AWS is offering it. Their pricing isn't even particularly attractive. Cloud testing farms have been around for Android (and iOS, as well) practically since the introduction of Android smartphones.

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PC sales go OFF A CLIFF to under 300 million a year

Vector
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Re: Gartner Prognostication

"People are finally giving up on the PC."

I don't know that they're giving up exactly. More like they just don't need to get a new machine. We spent years chasing after more power, but now we've reached the point where the vast majority of users have more than enough power to do everything they want to do, so there's just no incentive to go shopping for a new PC. Besides, those computer things sit at home for the most part, so it's hard to constantly throw your extravagance in your friends' faces. That's why everyone likes smartphones these days!

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Oi, idiot fanbois. DON'T buy this gun-shaped iPhone case, mmkay?

Vector
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Re: Not good

"Do your research and you'll find this to be true..."

Actually, in looking into this, I found the studies to be decidedly mixed with the results canted heavily based on agenda (conservatives prove they help, liberals prove they hurt). My sense was that the conservative studies tended more towards anecdotal evidence than liberal studies but, I'll admit, that's probably my own bias weighing in.

On your point about "rapist taking gun" not being in the news, well, of course not. That's not news worthy. There's nothing compelling in that story. Victim wards off attacker, on the other hand, is very compelling.

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Vector
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Re: Not good

"Unless you're one of those who think a 103 pound woman can fend off a 250 pound rapist by pissing herself."

I find this argument to be highly specious as well. The odds of a gun making any positive difference in your rape scenario are extremely low and highly dependent on a series of fortunate coincidences. The most likely outcome is that the gun will be taken from the 103 pound woman and used to force her to comply

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Vector
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@sisk & codejunky Re: Not good

Here's the biggest difference between a knife and a gun: If I see someone coming at me with a knife, I can run, which significantly improves my chance of survival compared to running if I see someone coming at me with a gun. Granted, several factors come into play, such as seeing the weapon and my ability to out run the attacker, but, overall, I still think the odds improve greatly.

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In your face, US citizens! Govt can’t save you from corporate eyes

Vector
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USA!

Championing Democracy (as run by economists)

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Uber execs charged, will stand trial in France

Vector
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“We are keen to continue talking to the French government about the regulatory framework for services like Uber"

Meanwhile, we'll just do whatever we damn well please regardless of the framework currently in place.

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'This ruling does nothing to change the facts' thunders Apple in latest price-fix appeal blow

Vector
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"Apple told The Reg in an emailed statement..."

Who are you people!? This can't be El Reg!

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Q: What's black and white and read all over? A: E-reader displays

Vector
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RGB?

I don't understand why most of these color e-paper technologies are described as using RGB elements. Since they are, by and large, intended to be lit reflectively, I would think CMY(K) would be a better choice for the same reasons that CMYK is the palette used for printing.

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BOFH: Don't go changing on Friday evenings, I don't wanna work that hard

Vector
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Re: Its a small change!

You get to wait until Monday?

Lucky Bastard!

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Humongous headsets and virtual insanity

Vector
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Re: Best group VR experience?

So what you'd really like to have is a Holodeck. And there are some experiments going on with that kind of notion (projection-wise, at least), but the experience is limited to a single person because the system has to map all the projections to a single point of view.

Disney has taken advantage of one of the limitations of projected 3D in a couple of their theme park attractions. Basically, one of the characters pokes their head way out of the screen and says something to the effect of "I just talking to you!" Because there is only one viewpoint in projected 3D, it appears to every member of the audience that they are being singled out. Kids love it, but it doesn't truly make for a shared VR experience (unless you consider occupying the same body a shared experience).

In order to have the freedom of a true VR experience, you have to have your own headset. Ignoring expense, this doesn't preclude a shared experience. You can still interact with the others people in the room virtually in VR and visually in AR. You can still all be in the same environment.

That all being said, it is still very early days for this technology. We've really only cracked one or two of the five senses, so there's still much to do. Will we have VR or AR headsets in every home in ten years? Probably. That's a long time to drive the price of the technology down, possibly to the point where you can stop in at the local drug store and get a throwaway if you left you're really nice headset at home.

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BlackBerry boss vows to keep making phones

Vector
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Coat

"this horse isn't dead yet"

Yes, it is. Chen's just kicking it.

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Germany says no steamy ebooks until die Kinder have gone to bed

Vector
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Coat

Re: More proof, as if it were needed, that politicians are idiots.

What? To prove politicians are idiots?

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Verizon promised to wire up NYC with fiber... and failed miserably – audit

Vector
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Re: Blame the Unions

Yeah! And how dare they delay the completion by a year+ as a negotiating tactic!!!

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Unlucky, Palmer: Facebook's going to BAN Oculus pr0n apps

Vector
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Re: How does it affect exisiting software?

"I'm wondering what this new walled garden approach means to applications which have been under development for years..."

I suspect very little. Mainly, that they won't get listed on Oculus's store. That's not the death knell that being shut out of the Apple Store would be for iOS developers.

The Rift is a peripheral. The computer to which it's connected is the arbiter of what software is allowed. Unless Oculus has gone to some extreme lengths to limit what it will display (which I think they would regret in the long term), you'll still be able to buy (or sell, as the case may be) whatever you like for it. You just may not be able to do it through Facebook. And that might just be a good thing.

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Google – you DO control your search results, thunders Canadian court

Vector
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Re: No sovereignty here

"... and there is no matter here."

Aside from a bit of hardware whose design was purloined from a competitor which is being flogged from a moving truck throwing websites out left and right.

By that theory, all marketing should be exempt from law. Sure, cyberspace was once a lovely place. Then the rest of the real world moved in. Now, it's just another place.

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Top Eurocop: People are OK with us snooping on their phone calls

Vector
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Re: At what point will the public feel safe?

"So what's a civilization to do when people demand the impossible from its government and will accept no less?"

You could start by implementing sane and reasonable policies that might actually accomplish the task.

Let's assume, for the sake of argument, that he's granted his wish and they get access to all telecommunications, phone and internet. What would the result be? Could it possibly be that the criminals and terrorists they are seeking would evolve other ways to communicate, including the open air encryption of code words and such? The end result would be no better policing and far worse privacy.

I always assume that if a system can be abused, it eventually will be. In this case, that means a whole lot of innocent people being swept up because their views don't comport with some megalomaniac's version of society. The best way to avoid this is to keep a lid on how much of our personal communications get out there in the first place.

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The thing about Apple's 'one MORE thing'? It's a streaming music thing

Vector
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Re: Version for Android coming up?

Why, yes. It'll integrate very nicely with the "Move to iOS" app they'll be releasing soon.

"Are you sure you wouldn't rather have an iPhone...Dave?"

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New US bill aims to zap patent trolls with transparency demands

Vector
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FAIL

Re: Or...

" It's in their best interest to consider and award as many patents as possible."

Try again. Having been through the patent process, I can assure you that there is a strong incentive in the patent office to deny patent applications (and, yes, the fees for application are non-refundable, so they get paid whether they grant or not).

The real problem is the rules the office operates under. The system has gone downhill ever since the idea that "business processes" could be patented was adopted.

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