1010 posts • joined Tuesday 18th September 2007 15:16 GMT
While I wish it were impossible to copyright an API, there is precedent for this. The instruction set of the MIPS architecture, for example, is protected by copyright, and so clones of it can't be sold without a licence - as was noted in news stories about the Chinese Godson processor.
I see that Tantalum, though, is greenish in color, meaning that substitutes for it are not too bad.
Given how it's implicated in exacerbating conflicts in Africa, why aren't we already using them in that case?
The word is appropriate, because it isn't a fee for a service I choose to avail myself, or a charge for something I choose to purchase. Instead, it is added to the cost of something else I wish to purchase, despite not being relevant to the production of that thing.
So it is similar to a tax in being imposed involuntarily on a voluntary transaction.
This same argument was used about a government-imposed copyright levy on blank tapes in Canada; we shouldn't call it a tax, because the money didn't go into general revenues, it went to copyright clearance agencies. But that only made it worse than a tax, not better.
And then Apple complains
when its products get sold on the grey market.
Quantity discounts are quite standard in manufacturing, but this sort of tactic goes beyond that, and it is anticompetitive. Individual carriers can't refuse the contracts, because of the popularity of the iPhone, but the government can act, and that is the only cure.
Although the company I get my cell phone from doesn't offer the iPhone. So a few companies can survive without Apple - but they're in a particular niche of the market.
The problem isn't that sites recruiting for al Qaeda will get filtered out. Given that they help cause death and destruction, good riddance. I think that this is the goal, and not defining 'extremist' has more to do with not offending Muslims than any hidden intent to scrub the Internet of legitimate political dissent.
So am I OK with this? Well, there's one problem. Now, if you don't have children who need protecting against online smut, and thus don't want your Internet filtered... now you can be suspected of being a terrorist!
Of course, connecting an inexpensive computer to a TV set used as a monitor was easier here in Canada or in the U.S., because in Britain, keeping an extra TV around the house means paying an extra annual license fee.
Had they chosen to protect their device with patents, and then reveal exactly how it works so that independent researchers could duplicate the process, then it would be accepted that they have discovered something. This way, it is difficult to take them seriously.
Now would be a good time for the United States to properly honor the brave men and women who gave their lives in resisting Viet Cong aggression against South Vietnam by carrying out regime change in Vietnam. After all, now one has a government to overthrow, not a guerilla war to fight.
The Communist Party of China should give up its grip on power, and turn China into a free country like the United States of America. Then the Chinese people, including the youth, will be able to lead meaningful lives, and video games will take their proper place as a harmless form of recreation, instead of escape from a bleak existence.
Looking for information on MRAM, I found that Everson had to exert themselves, by developing ST-MRAM, to get something that would write fast enough to be used as a DDR3 part. It seems MRAM writes faster than Flash, but not yet as fast as DRAM. Still, that could be old news, and the experimental parts the other companies are working with are ten times as fast as DRAM, but now I'm wondering.
Here I thought that this article was about the need to switch to IPv6 sooner rather than later.
Instead, it seems to be that we should thank the PS4 and the Xbox One for making it more difficult for certain countries to follow the lead of the Great Firewall of China without slowing their Internet access to a crawl.
Re: Off line
Unlike gold, the technology is just about here to make diamonds cheaply. Of course, some people might prefer diamonds that were dug out of the ground - and the diamond mining industry is trying hard to protect itself - but diamonds aren't a thing to hang on to for long now.
Why punish a company for a criminal act by one of its employees?
The company might have been made to pay restitution to that employee's victims, but a purely punitive fine to a company whose management and stockholders were not culpable makes no sense. At least in the absence of any finding that they were negligent in supervising the employee in question.
If a woman has an affair, her husband could be stuck for the rest of his life supporting some other man's child. For various practical reasons, the law doesn't explicitly tie a man's responsibility for child support to paternity, with his wife facing the usual criminal penalties for fraud if she obtains support from him for a child conceived adulterously.
Thus, I have no sympathy for a web site that counsels women to commit adultery; it should be treated like a web site that helps people commit crimes.
Not all advertisements
It's true that browser makers can't block banner ads infallibly. After all, they're just pictures sitting on a web page.
But view web pages with, say, Mosaic, and you'll be surprised by how few pop-up ads you see, or ads that slide over content, or even by how few cookies you get. Yes, that also turns off fancy features that could be used in the service of content instead of advertising (you won't be able to view YouTube videos from Mosaic) but browser makers could indeed offer users a lot more control over what a page is allowed to do.
Who let the advertisers in anyways? Revise who can be a member of the W3C so that it is composed of technical people and others who have the interests of general web users at heart, and votes won't end up with results inimical to the web serving the public.
Meanwhile, the government should be paying Microsoft to continue providing security updates for Windows XP and previous versions back to Windows 3.1. The money to do this should be extracted from convicted virus writers and other computer criminals, not taxpayers.
When you buy a computer, it should stay useful until the silicon wears out.
If an airline in the United States or Canada tried asking for passports on domestic flights, they'd pretty quickly go out of business. Of course, that's because both of these countries are so large that most people there have no occasion to travel to foreign parts, and doing so would be expensive.
Of course, depending on where you live, some Americans find it convenient to vacation in Mexico, and some Canadians find it convenient to shop in the United States. But it's not like Europe, where foreign countries are almost next door to everyone.
The original movie version of Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea had the submarine Seaview being unique because unlike normal submarines, it had big windows thanks to a transparent form of metal, so this is actually an idea in popular science fiction that long predates Star Trek IV as well as Star Wars.
Best News in Ages
When I saw this news story, my reaction was immediate: this is the best news we've had in some time. If the only alternative to letting global warming happen is massive economic sacrifices, people will just deny global warming - it's human nature. This is a positive alternative instead, that lets us have more abundant energy and yet solve the global warming problem.
I'm concerned about the limited number of writes that Flash memory can take before it dies.
Compressing the Helium
If they could pump some helium out of the balloon to put it into a compressed helium cylinder, that would solve their other problem - a gentle re-entry, slowly floating down, could be achieved that way.
Re: In a related vein...
A good article, but one thing near the end went too far. Young men are indeed "taught to dominate, compete, and repress emotional empathy", but for the most part that's not only normal, but appropriate in order to fit them to function in their expected role in life.
Never mind a hefty fine; this sort of thing calls for jail time. The fact that the uploader was a party to the video, instead of someone who hacked into the girl's computer, should be irrelevant.
On the name
Calling it the iPad Air is legitimate, given that it is thinner and lighter than its predecessors. I approve of the improvements in CPU and graphics performance, but I'm puzzled how they were achieved if it still uses the same processor. Perhaps that wasn't clear in the article, and they actually are using a different implementation of the same architecture.
This does indicate a profound cultural incompatibility between Turkey and Europe.
Still, what I have to ask is why Israel isn't in both NATO and the European Common Market. (Why it isn't in the European Union, of course, is obvious; its security needs don't mesh with the EU concepts of "human rights".)
Copyright infringement is wrong and dishonest. The reason it needs to be distinguished from theft isn't in order to obscure that fact.
Instead, it's to avoid losing sight of another fact: copyright is an agreement society entered into in order to encourage people to create content. It was not the obligatory recognition and respect of a natural law human right.
Which means that copyright infringement is the dishonest breaking of a promise society made to people who write books, make music or movies... but it also means that society was not under any obligation to make such a promise to begin with. We made the promise because we believed it to be in our best interests.
So if the studios come to Washington asking for the copyright laws to be expanded, the politicians have the right to say no.
As UTF-8 only represents characters up to 31 bits in length, the alternative of every character taking 32 bits still remains another valid, if wasteful, option.
UTF-8 is somewhat wasteful as well, often requiring three bytes instead of two, or two bytes instead of one; stateful encodings can do much better.
Re: Commercial fusion may not be as far away as you think
Deuterium can be extracted from water.
Tritium has to be manufactured in fission reactors by exposing deuterium to neutrons.
The Time we Should Use
Obviously, the Internet and computers should run on civil time. And civil time should neither have leap seconds, nor go out of step with the Sun: so that means a second that is adjustable and slightly longer than an SI second.
Scientists and engineers can use UTC or TAI or atomic Ephemeris Time as they please, but the rest of us should use a system which continues to behave the way timekeeping did before its precision forced us to worry about leap seconds.
Re: Unlike life in popular fiction...
C. S. Lewis might have had something to say about that. People can be nice on the surface and still have bad intentions. It depends how you define 'nice' and 'good', really: as long as you file respecting the rights of others under 'good', then putting good first won't get you in that kind of trouble.
The Great Firewall
The real problem isn't the NSA, it's the Great Firewall of China and internet surveillance by other non-democratic regimes. How one imagines people will be able to use technical measures to avoid that is beyond me.
Re: Twas ever thus
Vocational courses and apprenticeships are for people who are unable to enter University as they lack the required mental capacity. It would be wasteful to under-educate people who can benefit from a full education.
Re: Truth or consequences
It's a pity she can't find solid proof of the bullying she wasn't protected from, so as to sue the school for that for a few million pounds. Clearly the government has not done enough to remind schools of the importance of addressing the problem of bullying.
Actions should indeed have consequences.
Hampstead School should be looking for a new headmaster. The fact that an individual follows 'anti-establishment ways of thinking' is not a reason for hostile action against him in a free society. It would be different if he had been, say, calling for terrorist acts.
It is sad that, since the end of the Cold War, the laws preventing the U.S. from carrying out regime change in Vietnam have not been repealed. This is the only way to put a stop to this kind of nonsense.
It seems likely that these people are operating in Russia, and have the protection of its government. That's why takedown isn't trivial.
Well, filming the next Star Wars at 1080 line resolution would make it obsolete in the UHDTV era of 3000 lines, but analogue film can be digitized at the higher resolution. So there may be a rational reason to use film now even though you're right that it won't give the film what a better script would give it.
One trivial example of "what's wrong" with the relational model is that you use a key value to reference an entry in another table, which requires looking that key up in the index table, instead of using a direct pointer. That requires more disk accesses, and is slower.
Of course, it's also much easier to update. But some tables aren't updated often. So it isn't a bad thing to offer the choice of doing a few non-relational things. That, of course, doesn't detract from the benefits of the relational model noted in the article.
Re: The answer is obvious...
They built their power plants before the government came up with the notion of feed-in tariffs to encourage green energy production.
It's a pity that the victim's faith in the system couldn't have been restored. As the alleged abuser knew he wasn't entitled to the information, unlike the person who mistakenly disclosed it, he should have been subject to much more severe penalties - basically, it wouldn't even be necessary to prove the abuse to lock him up for the rest of his life.
I thought you had to pull on the round red thing, not push it, to shut the computer off in a hurry.
But then you have to wait for the manufacturer to send in a tech before you can use the computer again, and that would take more than two minutes.
Windows XP should not have had any vulnerabilities in it when it was initially released. Since Microsoft failed in its duty to make a product that worked properly, it should be required to support the product in perpetuity as far as security updates are concerned until such time as it has no vulnerabilities left.
The same goes for Windows 98 and Windows 3.1, for that matter. The U.S. government needs to get tough on slipshod software companies.
Shooting Themselves in the Foot?
12% of revenue is not unreasonable, and it's a positive thing for Acer to extend itself into new markets.
But it's still true that a Windows machine is considerably more useful than an Android machine or a Chromebook - although a Linux machine, on the other hand, is nearly the equal of a Windows one in utility. So it would be a mistake to abandon Windows; even if that market is now saturated, the others will run into their limits soon enough.
Good to hear
So not just uttering death threats, but uttering rape threats, is a criminal offence in the UK? Good to hear. I hope Canada follows this league. If the laws were just broadly defined enough...
In Edmonton, some years back, there was an incident in which three boys were thrown off a bus for making some of its women passengers uncomfortable - that is, concerned for their safety - by making wolf whistles. On their way out, one of them picked up the bucket of sand that was present by the driver for dealing with icy patches on the road, hitting the driver on the head, so she needed stitches.
Witness testimony was inadequate to allow the courts to determine which of the boys did this, and so no conviction resulted from the incident.
With proper laws, all three of them could have been spending life in jail for uttering rape threats instead.
In order to fish a saved password out of a browser, a hacker should need to:
1) Mock up a duplicate of the site the password was used to log in to, and
2) Spoof the DNS or IP address of the site in question
to get the browser to disgorge that password.
Not click 'show password'. Yes, maybe getting rid of 'show password' does lead to a false sense of security, since those passwords are potentially accessible, but they should be hard to get at.
However, there is another side of it, illustrated by the IE case. It's not as if browsers can get by only storing one-way hashes of the passwords; they need to actually have the password itself to use it for a site. So, even if it's encrypted, the key is just lying around as a constant.
So to change the false sense of security into a real one, you would have to use your master password every time you started browsing, not just when displaying passwords. That might be too much to ask.
Too Little, Too Late
It's obvious why one would want an x86 chip: to run Windows. As for an ARM chip, one would use it to run Android. And there's lots of z/OS software that gives IBM its mainframe customers.
But there's no particular reason to choose the PowerPC architecture. Some time back, IBM was giving away IP to people wishing to design PowerPC-compatible chips, and nothing much resulted.
In the case of desktop x86 chips, there are obvious reasons for more cores: Microsoft licensing policy, and the fact that it isn't possible to go from 4 GHz to 8 GHz with present technology. In the case of mobile chips, there may be room to increase the speed per core without increasing power consumption prohibitively.
It is true that faster is better than having more cores, but that assumes you have the choice.
A Strong America
If clean energy means making America dependent on wind and sunshine, while China goes ahead and burns coal like there's no tomorrow, then dealing with climate change is understandably a non-starter.
But if clean energy means providing America with energy independence and abundant supply through the use of nuclear power, I think that conservative politicians could be brought on-side.
Burden of Proof
For a civil lawsuit, as opposed to a criminal trial, the standard is the "balance of probabilities", hence hopefully Target can still get back every cent that was stolen from it.
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