Some of them sound downright unlikely. Washington DC? How is that a good city for a tech company? It's a hellhole you only live close to because you're working for the federal government. I'd also bet against Newark, New-York, Miami or Boston, seeing as they want a lot of cheap space. I think cities like Denver stand a good chance.
3461 posts • joined 3 Sep 2007
Technology can solve more and more complicated problems, but...
Now that we have technology, we can demand that Just Eat provide temporary means of communications between restaurants, their delivery people and customers! The delivery person can carry a smartphone with a secure app sending properly authenticated messages to a web interface provided by Just Eat, who will then relay the messages securely to the customer. The delivery person never gets the contact information of the customer, and All Is Well.
Except that well, you know, the delivery person necessarily needs to receive the name and address of the customer. In order to deliver. Let's invent a complex system which ensures safe deliveries, protecting the anonymity of the customer through a complex system of go-betweens which shall have appropriate levels of authorizations separated by double-blind communication channels!
Or maybe we shouldn't be so anal about private data. Delivery people have had the name, address and phone number of customers for many years, and the privacy issues can mostly be solved by a simple rule that if you call the customers for anything unrelated to work you get fired. I am not convinced that this system is broken or needs fixing.
I feel most of the criticism is short-sighted. People playing chicken with self-driving cars, for instance, could already do that. For some reason, they don't though. And self-driving cars could very well eventually learn how to go forward very slowly in gridlock situations in a way that solves the Holborn problem.
It seems to me all of these criticisms could have been said in the 1920s to explain how cars could never be used for transportation at scale.
Well realistically, there's not much governments can do, short of banning Facebook et al. They could maybe offer an ultimatum and a limit date, like starting from 2020, no private information is allowed to leave the continent, or your service is banned. But I'm not sure that if push came to shove, they would have the balls to actually go through with it.
Re: Oh how El Reg is fallen
It was well argued, moderate and does not contain any of the sentiments indicated in the El Reg article.
I could agree that it does not contain those sentiments, but I have to disagree with well-argued and moderate.
The thesis of the paper is that women make choices that are different from men, because they are on average biologically different from men. The conclusion is that Google should stop their diversity efforts, and not make their employees follow anti-bias training.
The paper does not claim that the biological differences are significant enough to explain all or even most of the difference in results between men and women. The paper does not give any argument that bias does not exist. The paper does not explain why the status quo is optimal and should be left as is. Without these arguments, all that's left of the paper is the conclusion that the author wanted to reach, and a single factoid that generally goes in the right direction.
This is in fact rather similar to what right-wing comments accuse the global warming argument from being: A single explanation (carbon pollution) is given for an effect (temperatures are going up); all other explanations are dismissed, and the conclusion is imposed.
Completely omitted: Diversity means racial diversity as well as gender diversity. It is well-documented that resumes wearing names that sound African-American are rejected more often than those wearing names that sound white. This is not only unfair, it reduces the pool of candidates to hire from, which means it is detrimental to businesses. Which is why businesses want their employees to follow anti-bias training. There is not a single word in the article that contradicts this; yet the article somehow concludes that Google should stop its efforts to raise diversity, and again that includes racial diversity just as much as gender diversity.
Re: Where are the women in tech jobs?
However it does strike me that discriminating in *any* way when recruiting is just plain dumb -- "positive discrimination" just means you've a much smaller candidate list.
Depends who you are and how you do it, actually. Google is pretty much known to everybody, so their candidate list is everybody. But they also organize Anita Borg scholarships and participate to events encouraging women to work in tech in general and at Google in particular.
On the other hand, if your recruiters are calling 50 new graduates a day, that's how many candidates you get. What difference does it make if they call the women first?
Re: Prefer authentication on the front of the phone
The iPhone sensor is a little bit too low for me to reach with my thumb (If I hold the phone by the bottom half, I always feel it's going to fall from my hand). So when I'm reaching for the phone in my pocket, I prefer the back sensor. But yeah, the front sensor is more convenient if the phone is lying on the table.
If the sensor can be under the screen, then they can put it in the middle of the screen, where it is easiest to reach. Or maybe they could put it on the side.
Re: Bitcoin fees
I refer @ratfox to previous posts on the subject, listing a long history of global gullibility, including black tulips, south sea bubbles, the Wall Street Crash and Welsh silver and lead mines.
For all of these, there was at least a claim that these things had intrinsic worth, or eventually were going to have one. The claim was wrong, but it existed.
To answer the incoming choir of voices about fiat money: Even for fiat money, there is an implicit assumption that the country issuing the money has an interest in having a semi-stable currency. For instance, the US government could technically pay their debts in one day by printing a single bill of $5 trillions and giving it to the Chinese. They're not doing it, because it would crash their economy into the stone age (along with most of the world). That's why people keep US instead of Zimbabwean dollars.
For Bitcoin, there is nothing of the sort. Under all the complex cryptography algorithm ensuring various interesting features, you are literally buying a number in a finite list. It is very much like fiat money, except that the country is only made of people who happen to be currently working with bitcoin, and any of them can leave that country at any time without losing anything. As long as everybody does not leave at once, Bitcoin keeps existing.
So so. First, relocating the data to a US server does not violate privacy, because they're not showing the data to anybody yet. Then, revealing data on a US server to the US government happens outside of Europe, so Europe law does not apply? Hmm. I wonder if there should be some kind of contempt of court for claiming such bullshit.
Maybe Europe should simply forbid private data to be stored outside of the EU?
The EU needs to have some way of forcing its institutions to behave. This is ridiculous. From what I understand, there's even a committee that does have the power to remove Battistelli, and they're doing nothing, probably because they want to preserve the independence of the patent office. I guess they're just going to wait until his ten is over...
Thankfully, there's little chance that the next guy will be quite as bad as this one. Knock on wood.
Re: Theft or not
I presume that Apple products are priced locally with local taxes in mind ?
If they are escaping paying local taxes by paying less elsewhere should this not be considered as actually stealing from the customer?
I'm not quite sure what you mean. Apple can charge whatever they want in whatever country they want. They of course have to also charge VAT of the local country, and they certainly do that. The VAT gets paid back in complex ways to and by different countries, but there's little doubt that they're doing that correctly.
But if Apple decides, say, to charge twice the price in UK than in Ireland for the same phone, it's their right. They don't have to connect the price to the local tax, whether VAT or corporate.
Re: woefully misinformed
Hardly any software ever is innovative. It's just tedious hard work!
Well from that point of view, software companies clearly can't innovate much no matter how hard they try! However...
PageRank concept isn't a Google idea!
I really have wonder how you came to this conclusion. PageRank was first described in an article from 1998 co-authored by the Google founders and two other people. Are you insinuating that they stole the idea from somebody else? Or that anyway PageRank was not innovative, it was "just tedious hard work"?
Yeah, sounds academic. In the first place, you don't want the battery drain. And then, this only works for people actually caught by the camera. On my phone, the angle under which the screen can be viewed is much wider than what the camera sees. Very interesting work and all that, but pretty much useless.
I'm looking forward to the day AR is a thing you can have without attracting weird looks. And I'm not talking about looking at your phone which happens to display what's behind it with an overlay; I'm thinking of having transparent glasses which act as heads-up displays. I think that there are a lot of very interesting and useful applications, people just need to get used to the idea first.
About what is lawful or not: The awkward thing about the right to be forgotten is that it prevents Google to display certain results for certain search queries, even though it's perfectly legal to publish the content on a website.
So for instance, it's legal to have a website stating that Mr. Mario Costeja went bankrupt in 1998. It's fine for Google to show that website as result for "la vanguardia 19 January 1998", but they're not allowed to show the same result if you search for "Mario Costeja".
The website is legal, Google is allowed to index it, they're allowed to show it, just not for this particular search.
Re: Missouri GDP ~$230B - Google market cap ~$720B.
Careful: the Missouri GDP is the total yearly revenue of the state, while the market cap is a measure of what Google is worth. For comparison, Google's revenue is about $100B a year. It's growing fast, but it will take 4-5 years until it catches up with Missouri. So no, Google cannot buy Missouri.
What happened to the fight with the AG in the neighboring Mississippi? If I remember correctly, Google managed to convinced some judge that the AG's subpoena was too broad, and a fishing expedition. I'm not sure it's over yet though.
Since the FTC decided to give Google a pass, the state AG are apparently taking things into their own hands.
However If they were a decent company and had plenty of competition then the actual business seems legitimate.
To be honest, even though the legal system is supposed to blindly apply the law, I think people underestimate how much the reputation and general behavior of a company can influence rulings. I wouldn't be surprised if the ruling had been different, were Uber indeed a decent company with plenty of competition.