* Posts by ratfox

3465 posts • joined 3 Sep 2007

Google drops standards-essential patent claims in Xbox slap fight

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Go

Sure

How much do we get paid?

Apple may debut low-cost iPhone for emerging markets in 2013

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WTF?

Re: 'phenomenal' sales

There are less people in US and Europe than in China, yet they bought 2.5 times more phones. How could the penetration be lower?

UK Apple cart Square punched in the wallet as sales, profit fall

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Headmaster

Affected!

Affected! Affected! Affected!

Facebook snubs storage barons for cheapo Far East kit - insiders

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Is this news?

I thought it was common knowledge…

Minicam movie pirate gets record-breaking five years in prison

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Coat

Re: Was it worth it?

Well, once he has a rap sheet, he can finally become a true rapper.

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Devil

Doublespeak

"…helping to reassure consumers that the movies and TV shows they watch online are legitimate and secure, not stolen…"

This reminds me a lot of the Microsoft Windows Genuine Advantage whose stated goal was to reassure users that their Windows software was not pirated. Completely ignoring the fact that mostly, end users and consumers don't give a shit about whether their copy is legitimate, they just don't want to be assumed guilty.

Google wriggles out of FTC search smackdown. Now to Europe!

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Alert

Subtleties

I noticed some time ago that googling for a stock market ticker like GOOG or AAPL, you get a graph of the stock price. However, clicking that graph has no effect: you need to choose from one of the three links below it, which bring to the finance products of Google, Yahoo and Microsoft respectively...

If you search for a place, you only get a map which links to Google Maps. No link to Bing maps.

Polaroid plans retail Fotobars to print out your pics

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Happy

Re: And next to Polaroid

Heh. It is not so often in these forums that the cloud is touted as the safest alternative.

Samsung confirms Tizen-based mobes to debut this year

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Angel

Nobody?

I would think that users are reasonably happy about having an alternative to iOS and cheap handsets… But of course users tend to get forgotten.

Hey, Apple and Google: Stop trying to wolf the whole mobile pie

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Unhappy

Interoperability

Ever since Apple started patching iTunes specifically to stop Palm devices from working with it, it has been going downhill.

Ideally, any piece of a system should be replaceable with that from a competitor... Fat chance of that happening, unless regulations are somehow put in place.

Dotcom titan funds 'Mark Cuban Chair To Eliminate Stupid Patents'

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I did

The "Dotcom" in the title was fairly confusing. Shurely they meant "Dot com"?

US patent office: Nice try Apple, but pinch-to-zoom is NOT a new invention

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Devil

Good

The only good patent is a dead patent

Euro Commission abandons ACTA court request

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Go

Woohoo

…And stay dead!

Google can't use finger-fumble patent to poke Apple - Trade panel

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Go

Good

The only good patent is a dead patent.

Nasdaq's RIM shot: BlackBerry maker ejected from top 100

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Unhappy

Alas, poor RIM

I feel between the bargaining and acceptance stage.

Siri: Can you make a Raspberry Pi open a garage door?

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Unhappy

Beat me to it

Have an upvote

Google Maps becomes Apple's most popular app

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Maybe not

I wonder how many downloads are necessary to jump to the top of the charts. I suspect that a percentage in the single digits in a day would be plenty enough. I.e. you could probably have 80% rabid fanbois swearing never to install the maps app of the enemy, and still have the app get to the top if half of the remaining users download it.

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Go

Playing the long game

The problem with this is that Google has more users, and thus get more feedback and corrections. Especially since corrections are vastly easier to report using a desktop web site, which Apple does not have. It have to say I do not understand why Apple is not creating a web site for their maps, like Nokia has done with here.com. It should give their maps a lot more users at a comparatively small price.

EDIT: HOLY $#*! I CAN EDIT MY POST!!1! Adding GO icon!

Schmidt 'very proud' of Google's tiny tax bill: 'It's called capitalism'

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Re: Love or hate Google...

Meh. Compared to Zuckerberg?

Punters rate Apple, Samsung more highly than ever

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WTF?

Sony rated higher than Apple?

Who would've thunk?

RIM is really in trouble when even Windows Phone 8 looks great

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Meh

I believe RIM is toast

It brings me no pleasure to say it, but I believe that the best thing they can hope for is to sell, whether the company or some of its IP.

Upvote if you agree, downvote if you don't…

Entire US Congress votes against ITU control of internet

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FAIL

ITU's role is […] not to act as a regulator? O RLY?

Lessee what Reuters says on the subject this week:

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/04/us-un-internet-treaty-idUSBRE8B316I20121204

"A U.S. and Canadian proposal to protect the Internet from new international regulation has failed to win prompt backing from other countries, setting up potentially tough negotiations to rewrite a telecom treaty."

"The idea, also supported by Europe, would limit the International Telecommunication Union's rules to only telecom operators and not Internet-based companies such as Google Inc and Facebook Inc."

"That could reduce the prospective impact of efforts by other countries including Russia and some in the Middle East and Africa to obtain more powers to govern the Internet through the ITU, an arm of the United Nations. Those efforts, slated for discussion next week, could make Net anonymity - or the ability to remain anonymous online - more difficult to maintain and could bolster censorship, critics say."

This article implies rather clearly that the role of the summit is to write new regulations…

Court slaps down Verizon, upholds FCC data roaming rule

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Go

Go appeals court!

The sooner the telecoms market becomes commoditized the better!

Chinese student fails job interview because of iPhone

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Unhappy

40+ years ago?

There's your problem… Just come back when you will be younger.

Xboxes stay on sale but may cost Microsoft money in Google case

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Go

Makes sense to me

Now, if only all patents were subject to the same rules, think how much better off we would all be!

Who's using 'password' as a password? TOO MANY OF YOU

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Meh

Re-generating a password

When I am forced to re-generate a password because I forgot my old one, the web site invariably tells me that I cannot use this password, because it is the same as the old one.

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Mushroom

And a <i>special</i> mention to web sites…

That send you back the password by e-mail so that you don't forget it. After insisting you should choose your password carefully.

Tech titans lose our loyalty: Are fanbois a dying breed?

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Go

Good, good

I look forward to the moment where people will use a computer without even noticing what brand it is, or what kind of OS it has.

Clap Google, Amazon in irons to end tax shenanigans - MPs

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FAIL

They seem to have finally realized

That under the current system, what these companies do is perfectly legal, and that they must change the law if they want things to change.

Of course, they would not go out and say it that way. They will claim that "companies do not report their tax practices transparently", when in fact those tax practices are completely transparent, it is just that they do not approve of these practices. They will even accuse the HMRC of not doing their job of "policing the tax system", when in fact the HMRC can only apply the laws that have been given to them.

However, I assume that the law was written the way it is for a reason, and that this reason will crop up when they attempt to rewrite the law to make it impossible to do what the companies are currently doing…

EU joins Google, hippies, Uncle T Cobbleigh in fight against ITU

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Paris Hilton

So what is the purpose of the ITU?

I still have not managed to find out what problems the ITU is supposed to solve, considering it has allegedly no powers and is criticized by so many… They do claim to have some kind of mandate, though.

Don't worry, Apple: iPad still dominant in China

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WTF?

"pared-down, cheaper version of its iconic smartphone"

I fail to find words to describe the level of ignorance required to think that Apple would do that.

Apple plants flag on wireless power-supply map

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Devil

the charging unit will only work with identified devices

Technically, I understand their desire to make money, but I want to scream at the fact that, in this day and age, one would purposefully design a system to be incompatible. I may be wrong, but it seems that Apple is particularly prone to do this, like when they expressly stopped Palm devices to connect to iTunes.

NY Museum of Modern Art embraces 14 video games

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Alert

Nothing from Blizzard?

Hmm. Maybe not so surprising. However good they are, they might not contain anything you would call art. But then, why Street Fighter II?

Nice that they are considering Grim Fandango, though.

ITU to EU: We don't want to control the internet... honest

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The problem is not what the ITU is doing

…even though this is not quite as transparent as the article claims. The problem is what it could do. The mere idea that anybody – anybody – is claiming to have a mandate to regulate the Internet is anathema to many.

Google+ exec declares Facebook 'social network of the past'

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Trollface

Ballmer sounds the same

when he talks about Android and the iPhone.

The Lord of the Rings saga lies hidden deep in your Mac

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See also

.freebsd, and .history, and .birthday

Twitter forced to cough raw feed after PeopleBrowsr wins temporary order

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WTF?

Why?

Why would twitter limit its data to a handful of resellers? Do they get more for exclusivity? Surely it is their own interest that the market for their own data be as transparent as possible…?

Assange needs to get some sunlight and fresh air, say Ecuadoreans

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Meh

Hi health "could get worse at any moment"?

Well, yeah, obviously… Everybody's health could get worse at any moment. I have a cold, for instance.

Amazon makes BEELLIONS from British customers, pays pennies in tax

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Happy

Worse than sociologists? How about literary critics?

http://xkcd.com/451/

Apple sticks finger in dyke, cuts off Dutch flood of Galaxy S, SII, Ace

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WTF?

I thought Europe did not do software patents?

Or is it a design patent?

Iran's Photoshop FAIL: 'New drone' actually Japanese university bird

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Happy

Surprising it took so long to find out

Just searching for the Iranian picture on Google search returns the Japanese picture among the results.

Microsoft applies for patent for 'Google Goggles'-type AR specs

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WTF?

I am not sure I get this

Does that mean, if that patent is granted, that it will be forbidden for Google Glasses to display information about a live event that the wearer is attending?

Google, Apple, and Microsoft downed in Pakistan

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Happy

Yeah, I was going to ask too…

Being able to hack Google, Apple, Yahoo and Microsoft web sites at the same time would rather stretch credibility.

APPLE goes on crazy, price-SLASHER Black Friday RAMPAGE

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WTF?

Celebrate a holiday?

When there are sales after Christmas, do you also attribute this to stores celebrating Christmas by offering cheaper prizes as gift to their customers?

Pirate cops bust LITTLE GIRL, take her Winnie-the-Pooh laptop

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Devil

demanded that to avoid prosecution he fork over €600…

…and sign a non-disclosure agreement promising to keep mum about the settlement.

My, my, what a pretty business model they have. Do they even declare that money?

Google avoids tax with ‘Double Irish Dutch Sandwich’

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Devil

It is not naive

It is not naive. This is exactly what Apple and Google are doing with their Bermuda/wherever offices. Most of the income they make in countries outside of the United States is declared in there, because royalties paid by their subsidiaries all over the world ultimately end up there. Most of that money never comes in the United States, and they don't pay tax on it in the United States. And the US government knows it, and does not say much about it, because it is in fact legal for a US company to do that (Finland might be different, though).

A slightly perverse effect of this is that companies now have an disincentive to invest that money inside of the United States, because if they did, they would first have to bring the money in the country and pay tax on it. And so, they lobby the US government for a tax holiday, which would allow them to bring the money with lower or no tax, arguing it is better for the United States if the money is invested there rather than just growing in an offshore account. This article gives some details.

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Re: two types of avoidance - or is it three

There are very good reasons for a company making most of its money – possibly all of its money – overseas. Rovio, the maker of Angry Birds, probably makes comparatively very little money in Finland. In fact, it is probable that if you did not count the income from outside of Finland, the company would be losing money. So which country gets to tax them? Finland, which probably paid for the education of the employees, and created the society where their talent for innovation was nurtured? United States, where are based most of the companies who actually charge the users (Apple, Google, Microsoft)? The countries of the users, who are managing economies that allow citizens to buy unessential products like games for smart phones? If Google bought Rovio, what would change, and why?

Heck, for all I know, Rovio has a subsidiary in the Cayman Islands which is "managing" Rovio's intellectual property for the whole world, and Rovio is not paying tax anywhere because that subsidiary is their only profitable company anywhere in the world.

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Alert

Chalk this up to disruptions of the internet

If a foreign company sells stuff in a country, the country used not to care. This was such a small part of the economy that it mattered little. Now that large parts of an economy is transborder commerce, it becomes feasible for companies to shop around and earn money where income is taxed less.

Fixing is going to be "fun". I would just tax the transactions, but to take a variation of an old example, if an Australian resident on a British website clicks an ad for a German company brokered by an American company, where is the transaction happening?

I wonder in particular what this $AUD1bn means (note that this is of course revenue, not income). Is this money that were paid by Australian companies to Google because somebody clicked on their ads? Or is it money Google earned because Australians clicked on the ad? And how much of it goes in fact directly to the probably Australian website which was publishing the ad?

UK.gov to upgrade buying tool after mega cockup downs £1bn deal

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Trollface

"The sourcing tool is widely used across the public and private sectors"

That'll be a Word document, then?

APPLE reveals complete updated blueprints of SPACESHIP JOBS

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Not easy to tell the scale

But unless I am completely off, the walk around it is a bit over one kilometer. This IS huge.

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