* Posts by The Commenter formally known as Matt

178 publicly visible posts • joined 30 Jun 2009


Train-knackering software design blunder discovered after lightning sparked Thameslink megadelay

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: and basically impossible to test for.

"It then comes back as the Virgin Pendelino trains and suddenly it is the best thing out their."

Been on them a couple of times (sober and not hungover thank you very much) and they make me really queezy, a quick google shows they still make lots of people sick and are pretty much despised.

UK's Just Eat faces probe after woman tweets chat-up texts from 'delivery guy'

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: I'm failing to see how this is Just Eat's fault

Just Eat get your data, and are responsible for protecting it. Sure the problem may have occurred by an employee of one of their suppliers/partners (who *also* have a responsibility for protecting your data) but this doesn't mean Just Eat don't have a responsibility.

Every company needs to think about how to protect themselves from rouge employees, and this fits into that space. The obvious answer is don't give phone numbers to restaurants. Contact can be made via Just Eat (or and app or whatever). This could have the added 'brand value' that calls come from Just Eat, not the resultant or someone mobile.

The same can go for addresses, the restaurant doesn't need your name/address in their records, on paperwork all over the shop, only the delivery driver needs your address, so give them an app where it can be provided to them as they need it.

Sure this isn't how deliveries currently work, and would involve work setting up the infrastructure, but setting up infrastructure and writing apps is Just Eats core business.

1 in 5 STEM bros whinge they can't catch a break in tech world they run

The Commenter formally known as Matt

It depends where you are. There is no such thing as positive discrimination, just discrimination.

In the EU it's illegal full stop (well that what I was taught on our diversity training anyway)

The Commenter formally known as Matt
Thumb Down

What a biased and immature article.

If you are a white male and you apply for a job and a less qualified non-white or non-male candidate is chosen then you have been illegally (in the EU anyway) and immorally (everywhere) discriminated against. Whether the company is dominated by your gender or race is completely irrelevant, only your abilities (and the other candidates abilities) are relevant.

The author mocks men for believing they are discriminated against, and applauds women for having the same beliefs, whilst providing zero evidence for this incongruity

Car tax evasion has soared since paper discs scrapped

The Commenter formally known as Matt

no more disks in windscreens! ANPR can look it up automatically, no need to go back to last century tech!

The Commenter formally known as Matt

The evasion going up isn't the issue, its the enforcement. The new system was (partly) supposed to make enforcement easier (or put in place because enforcement is now easier - I can't remember which).

So of this 1.8% how many were caught and dealt with appropriately? Sadly the article doesn't tell us

Tory-commissioned call centres 'might have bent data protection laws'

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: To summarize

Tory party money, not tax payer surely

Agile consultant behind UK's disastrous Common Platform Programme steps down

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Agile doesn't work

> Agile doesn't work Because it allows cock ups like the scheme this article is about and the reason why the emperor has been called out for having no clothes.

um no. Thats not agile allowing cockups like this, its management/stakeholders.

The projects been running for 3 years. With agile (assuming 2 week sprints) that means management have had 78 demos/releases showing a complete lack of work being completed, and they ignored them all.

Waterfall would wait for 3 years and then give one release showing a lack of goodness.

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Agile doesn't work

No framework will give you the skills you are talking about.

If you don't test fro reliability, privacy and security then they won't be there, Agile or Waterfall.

Bloke flogs $40 B&W printer on Craigslist, gets $12,000 legal bill

The Commenter formally known as Matt

you mean the Anglo-American Loan Agreement which was repaid in 2006?


BBC telly tax drops onto telly-free households. Cough up, iPlayer fans

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: iPlayer - accounts and international markets

demand whatever you want, even in capitals doesn't mean you're going to get it

Investors furious that Amazon only made $482m last quarter

The Commenter formally known as Matt

The fact that the profit was hundreds of millions on its own is irrelevant, what is relevant is that profit compared to the expected profit. The stock price was based on the expected profit, the actual profit was less so the stock price dropped and inverters lost paper money (unless they sold, in which case they lost real money, or more likely lost expected profit). (This is my very basic understanding, I'm sure some will explain in more detail).

Either the analysts cocked up on their projections, or the company underperformed. who knows.

If you did some work and made £100 profit is that a good thing or not? If you invested £5 and were expecting to make £10 profit, then it is good. If however you invested £10k and expected to make £5k then its very very bad deal.

The voters hate Google. Heeeeyyyy... how about a 'Google Tax'?

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: pay tax at point of sale.

not really, one of the problems with the current internet-y world is where does the sale take place?

If I am in the UK selling some digital problem, I have my website, hosted by a US company, someone from Japan buys my product. Where did the sale take place?

Also I believe Google were getting criticised because their UK offices forwarded all sales calls to the Ireland offices, so they paid Irish (Eire-ish?) taxes

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: FLAT TAX! No more loopholes.

If you put a 15% income tax on companies most companies would go broke as they simply don't make enough profit. Companies are taxed based on profits not income because some businesses run with very low margins. People are taxed on income as the only 'profits' they could make would be savings, and we have enough trouble getting people to save without taxing them at a high percentage.

Has the UK Uber crackdown begun? TfL opens consultation on private car biz

The Commenter formally known as Matt

yeah ok on re-reading my comment maybe it does deserve that thumbs down.

While it is correct, passenger details generally aren't recorded by mini-cab firms, details about the journey are, so in worse case scenario - i.e kidnap, assault or robbery for example, evidence does exist.

This record doesn't exist for black cabs hence the want for tighter controls. However Uber is, I'd argue, better than minicabs for recording this info.

Also as the tech now exists for easy journey recording etc, then this should be rolled out to black cabs also. They system could be run by the local authority so black cabs can remain independent.This would mean better evidence recording etc for black cabs, they could even justify relaxing the black cab regulations

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: What am I missing @Matt @Roland8

"My comment was a direct answer to the question", ah ok, fair enough, by the looks of it we agree currently the only real difference between uber and local taxi firms it the potential for a supplier-customer relationship. and cost.

I'm not saying this is a bad thing or irrelevant. If it becomes the local firms usp vs uber then good luck to them, it may keep them competitive, it may even allow them to push up prices/profit.

I'm not saying black cabs or local taxi firms should burn, rather just let the market sort them out!

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: The Knowledge

If the regulations are there, legitimately, to protect customers and provide a better service then they are not fit for purpose and should be relaxed / removed.

If the regulations are there to protect a small group of incumbents and push up fees then, while they are fit for purpose, they should still be relaxed / removed.

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Well one the booking system for mini-cabs doesn't record the passenger, they don't ask for my name let alone ask for id, and all the other private hire records uber already does, so no problem

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: The Knowledge

but studies about which is better is irrelevant. The real question is are sat nav's good enough and are people willing to pay more for 'the knowledge'.

The clear answer is yes and no.

Black cabbies know this and rather than adapt to the market they are attempting to use regulations to protect themselves.

It really depends why the regulations exist, if they are there to protect people and provide a good service then clearly its time for them to be relaxed, if its to push up costs and protect a few independent workers then yes throw uber to the wolves and while your at it ban all mini-cabs

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: What am I missing

"My understanding is that Uber effectively arranges a generic car to get you from A-to-B, it currently does a poor job of handling special needs or preferences."

My understanding is this is the same for mini-cabs and black cabs.

"the drivers been screened/vetted"

From uber uk: "In the UK all partner-drivers are fully licensed by the local authority. As such they all undergo the same vetting process all taxi and cab drivers go through, this includes an enhanced DBS check.”

"assign a driver known to the passenger."

Uber is a new service, if they don't offer this service they may do in the future, if you want it then go with a firm you have a relationship with.

The only advantage I can see in your comment, is some local firms may build up a relationship with customers, whereas Uber currently doesn't, and may go above and beyond for them, where uber drivers may or may not. So really you are saying having choice and competition is a good thing.

If this is an advantage then hurray for local firms, and people will prefer them. If it isn't then who cares?

Minicab-hailing app Uber is lawful – UK High Court

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Boring..

hopefully they will adopt similar software made by someone else. Competition is a good thing

Dry those eyes, ad blockers are unlikely to kill the internet

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Ummm 2

Well presumably they (the adblocker dev) will define non-intrusive. I'd start with does not expand/hide other content. Does not auto play sound , does not auto play video on mobiles. Does not have 3rd party tracking cookies etc etc

Vodafone didn't have a £6bn tax bill. Sort yourselves out, Lefties

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Well said

Downvote for this: "Do wake up."

Uber alles... nein! Germany imposes nationwide ban on taxi app

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: You cannot put the brakes on progress.

>bandit horde of untrained, unlicensed, unregulated and quite probably uninsured "taxis"

Except that Uber require drivers to have a private-hire license and commercial insurance and pass background checks.

Assuming a private-hire licence requires some form of training then every point of your sentance is an incorrect assumption


The Commenter formally known as Matt

>You could be picked up by a convicted rapist in an ininsured car for all you know. I doubt Uber or its rating system would give you the slightest clue either. That's the fundamental issue here.

well except they do background checks and have insurance, but lets not let that get in the way of your mouth frothing

Premier League wants to PURGE ALL FOOTIE GIFs from social media

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Simpler solution than developing seek-and-destroy software

but you would have to blindfold the payers and officials to make sure

Auditors blast Blighty cops over binned multi-million pound IT project

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Agile approach?

If they spent 8+ years and £15m and got nothing out of it then it clearly wasn't an agile project!

Cabbies paralyze London in Uber rebellion

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Missing the point...


What are the licensing requirements to drive with Uber in London?

Uber works with Public Carriage Office (PCO) licensed drivers. At the time of onboarding, you will need to bring with you all up-to-date legally required documents. For yourself this includes:

a valid driver's license

driver's license counterpart

PCO license.

For your vehicle you will also need to bring:

a valid MOT


commercial insurance certificate

PCO license.

If you are a PCO Operator yourself, just bring your operator's license.

So yes you need insurance

Google's driverless car: It'll just block our roads. It's the worst

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Inevitable but...

Turn it around, if someone had a blow-out in a regular car and it turns into a pile up, who is responsible?

I would guess: if its a manufacturing fault, the manufacturer. If the car hasn't been serviced then the owner/driver, if it has but badly then the garage.

IANAL but my understanding is: If someone stops (at traffic lights or emergency) and you hit them its your fault. Unless they they perform an emergency stop for no reason in which case they could be guilty of dangerous driving (or possibly insurance fraud). If they have an accident (or pull out at a junction or change lanes without checking/indicating etc) and you hit them then it's their fault as they caused the accident, unless you are guilty of dangerous driving (driving unreasonably close, without due care etc)

At the end of the day I don't see the situation changing too much, except the responsibility between the driver/owner('s insurance company) and the manufacturer('s insurance company) possibly needs to be clarified, which is the role of the courts.

Wolfenstein: The New Order ... BLAM-BLAM! That guard did Nazi that coming

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: a comment from the sidelines

Except 'back then' one of the main complaints was the 'violent' games were to realistic and kids/people couldn't tell them from real life.

When you were younger you probably scoffed at those comments, now you are older (and, of-course, wiser) you are making the same comments and the kids are rolling their eyes and scoffing at you!

Be the next tech hotshot – by staying the hell away from regulators

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: The small, the big and the ugly

Tell that to Madoff, Caught red handed, admitted his guilt and sentenced to 150 years of chokey

GOV.UK push in action: Er, FEWER Brits filling out govt forms online

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Have to agree.....

>Now don't even get me on trying to find the school term times and teacher "training" days. Yet to manage that.

Google 'school term dates', first link is direct gov. click it.

enter your post code or click on the map.

click the link to your local authority.

Term dates displayed.

Inset days (teacher training days)?

Don't know about other LA's but Surrey's term page says it varies by school and provide a link to the school directory with links to schools websites.

Ok so a centralised list of inset days would be more useful but not being able to google 'school term dates' and click on a link? really!

Not exactly rocket science

I QUIT: Mozilla's anti-gay-marriage Brendan Eich leaps out of door

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Then, when I vote at an election, why is it in secret?

Google's Project Glass headman answers most pressing question: 'Why?'

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: The computer that 'lives on your head' will change mankind

>>There is a 100% chance someone's world will change when they try to enter my premises wearing this thing, and not in a positive fashion

How is you politely saying "I'm sorry by you can't wear that in here" going to change someone's world?

US federal judge: Yes, Bitcoin IS MONEY

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: "It can be used to purchase goods and services"

So gbp is money, euros, usd and yen aren't?

My bleak tech reality: You can't trust anyone or anything, anymore

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: A few notes

interesting notes!

Here are some more:

>I would like to see the data custodian acting as a fiduciary *on my behalf only*

On your behalf as a borrower presumably. If they can't act on their own behalf they they must be a non profit. So you are asking for a non-profit bank, or simply a bank with higher standards of data security?

Alternatively maybe you want these data custodians to be ratings agencies for individuals. However ratings agencies aren't held responsible for their recommendations and risk isn't an exact science so their recommendations are usually crap anyway. If the data custodian is forced to guarantee a loan they will probably only lend to very very safe borrowers and charge a high margin to cover when they get it wrong.

Their ability to rate borrowers is what makes each bank unique and why they offer different interest rates. If they can only offer loans to these indemnified borrowers then it's just a race to the bottom in terms of returns.

>An indemnified 'yes' to a loan will be picked up by somebody.

True, but what happens to people who want a loan but the data custodian refused to indemnify their loan? Is it because the borrower is too risky for a loan, or they are too risky for the data custodian, or the data custodian made a mistake or had a bad risk algorithm?

What if there is a lender who disagrees with the data custodian and is willing to take the risk on this borrower (or would if they knew the details/credit report)? You seem to be suggesting one large data custodian, if effect this is destroying the loans market and would result in increased rates for everyone.

>Unless you are engraving a name plate, you don't need my name.

Well someone needs your name, if this data custodian came into existence then no the bank wouldn't need your name, but the data custodian would.

>However, they do not expunge that data once they have made the determination.

They would need to keep your contact details, but the rest should not be kept. If it is their the data protection watchdog should give them a kicking.

Side note: Have you heard of zopa? Its a 'peer-to-peer' lending scheme here in the UK which appears to do what you are suggesting without the indemnity. They do credit checks on borrowers and split them into risk groups. Lenders then sign up and offer to loan money out to the groups at different rates. Lenders get better rates than at the bank, borrowers get better rates than at the bank. Zopa make a margin. People seem to like it as it identifies banks as a greedy middleman and bypasses them, but if a borrower defaults the lender loses out.

>The fact that anyone even thought to ask for people's facebook passwords as a condition of employment in the United States is cause for alarm.

This is a whole other thread, yes employers asking for facebook passwords is wrong (and if you give them over breaking the TOS). The simple answer is say no and work for a less creepy boss (hey I did say simple answer).

>They could not ask for it if it effectively did not exist.

True, but some people want to use facebook. Just because some dodgy employers are making unacceptable demands does not mean innocent people should have facebook taken away from them.

>I am mostly talking about the U.S. government, which has a huge sway over the rest of us.

fair enough

>controlled export of encryption stronger than 64 bits

From what I understand this is a handup from old weapon export laws but isn't enforced.

>That effectively lowers your encryption to zero bits. Sounds like crappy encryption to me.

But only on a court order, which one would hope was carefully considered. Unless you are seriously suggesting law enforcement should never have access to any encrypted data. Could you imagine how badly this could be for society. On the other hand if it became too easy for 'them' to get private data it could be equally bad for society. (and I did say this was a broken law)

>The vast majority of creators would give up any right to copyrights or patents in a heartbeat if they understood what the trade meant. Give up a tiny trickle of income and gain access to all the world's art and music, science and literature and remove the 'IP' tax from goods and services -- not just for yourself, but for everybody.

If your sole income came from being a creator; authors, song writers (not necessarily performers), artists and computer programmers are a few examples that come to mind, then I bet you wouldn't agree to this. Lose your income but get other art etc for free, Great but you can't eat art.

Unless you are referring to a utopian vision where physical goods are free then this isn't going to fly.

What about a company that designs advanced computer chips, or any industry that take a huge investment to produce a new good. Are you seriously suggesting that anyone with manufacturing capability should be able to grab their designs and start selling?

Current copyright and patent laws are not perfect (to somewhat understate the situation) but what they are mean to do (protect innovators for a *limited* amount of time so they can turn a profit before their competition gets their innovation for free) is a fine goal.

>Re: Then create a project/product. Make it user-friendly and shout to everyone why they need it!

>I think you might be joking here, but if not: you can't trust me. If you need to depend upon me, then you don't really have that security.

Yes it was half tongue in cheek statement. More a dig at the open source believe that everyone can code and many eyeballs makes for safe code.

On a more serious note: above you were talking about someone acting as a fiduciary and that takes trust. So yes somewhere along the line you need to trust other people. You can't survive without it.

>My point is, unless you can do it yourself, you cannot be sure it is not compromised.

And unless you are the worlds expert on encryption (and cracking of) you can't have reliable security.

How do you write code? Because unless you wrote the compiler yourself...

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: A few notes

A few notes on your notes

Some of your notes went over my head but here's what I got:

Your idea of loan proxies is effectively what a bank does at the moment. I lend my money to the bank (or they buy it on the money markets) they lend it to borrowers. I get a small return, the bank gets a much bigger one. I don't get to know who borrowed my money, but neither do I take the risk of an individual borrower going bust. (And if the all go bust then the Government covers the risk. And if the government goes bust then I have bigger worries than losing a few thousand of what is now a worthless currency)

When you ask a lender for a loan the reason they get all that personal information is they use it to determine how risky they think you are. Each bank has a different idea of what makes someone risky and so algorithm they use is different for every lender. They don't want anyone 'working the system' or copying their (obviously superior) algorithm so it is kept very, very secret. Banks have different risk appetites and like a mixture of different risk levels. If you lend with zero risk then your return is minimal, for this reason banks would would never go for exclusively using a proxy as they couldn't make enough money.

> As of this point in time, most data is being held and transmitted in the clear

Source? Depends what you are talking about I guess. If you mean credit bureau to bank then I don't have personal knowledge but would be very surprised if this was true. If you are talking websites then most I use on a regular basis are https.

> the establishment that controls things insists on keeping key sizes down, insists on a woefully insecure network and still is madly attempting to create legislation to force intermediaries like ISPs to reveal 32 bit IP addresses-user pairs, to enforce weak encryption and to outlaw attempts to circumvent their own encryption.

Who do you mean by the establishment? If you mean the Govt then, here in the UK at least, they seem to take it seriously. Pen testing for externally facing systems, GSI for emails, usb device ban other than encrypted devices. All laptops encrypted. Constant training on how to not leave sensitive info on the train. etc etc

> enforce weak encryption

I haven't heard of anyone trying to do this. Yes, in the UK, a Judge can force you to hand over your encryption keys (and yes the law is broken) but they haven't forced anyone to use crappy encryption.

> outlaw attempts to circumvent their own encryption

Are we talking Govt or private industry here? Yes they have DRM, no I don't like it, but from their point of view the west makes less physical goods and more IP so the IP needs to be protected to keep our economy going (If the IP holders decide to pay tax of course!)

> This is not available to non-programmers, but it is certainly available to a significant subset of programmers.

Then create a project/product. Make it user-friendly and shout to everyone why they need it!

Three's mobile data goes titsup in mysterious spreading outage

The Commenter formally known as Matt
Black Helicopters

Re: Back up

> They're not out to get you.

Unless you're *that* Naozumi, in which case they are out to get you

Marks & Sparks accused of silently bonking punters over the tills

The Commenter formally known as Matt

nfc annoying

The pay points at our local car park have been 'upgraded' to accept nfc.

So if you put a wireless card in it uses it automatically rather than ask you for a pin.

Only take about twice as long to authenticate, grr

Apple: ebook price fixing? Nooo, nothing to do with us, no siree

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: 'Cost' for an e-book

> Grapes Of Wrath. Kindle price £7.99, paperback £6.89

> No proofreading, no marketing. All that was done in the 1930's

I'm curious so lets run the numbers as close as we can:

Stross is quoted above as saying "80-90% of the cover price of a book has nothing to do with the paper and ink"

So if we assume 10-20% of the cost is printing costs and everything else if profit:

printed book profit: £5.51 - £6.20

ebook profit: £7.99

but ebooks charge VAT so:

ebook profit: £6.66

Amazon book fees are 0.86 + 17.25% of selling price for printed books and 30% for ebooks

printed book profit: £3.70 - £4.27

ebook profit: £4.67

So, based on cost, using these rough number and my (probably) dodgy maths, it appears ebook is 40-97p overpriced. But prices, and purchasing decisions aren't made on cost but on value.

> That is pure profiteering

No it isn't. Profiteering usually refers to raising prices during an emergency, especially on critical products. This is not profiteering but capitalism, the seller has the rights to sell this product at whatever price they want. If you like the product and the price you can buy it. If not you are free to look elsewhere or for something else. You could even contact the seller with a counter-offer but good luck with that.

> no such costs to recoup.

The aim of selling isn't just to recoup costs but to make profit.

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: 'Cost' for an e-book

If the prices are a rip off then people wouldn't buy. As people clearly are buying these best-sellers then the price is acceptable to a large number of people. They may get more profit at a lower price with more sales, or they may get more profit with a higher price and less sales. Without seeing their accounts we can't possibly know.

Prices are not based on cost (+ reasonable profit) but on value. If people are willing to spend £10 on a book it is irrelevant if the costs are £1 or £9.

Publishers need to get the most profit they can from all books they publish. But (I imagine) the book market is really hard to segment. Traditionally the only segments are hard & paperback. Now they have ebooks as another segment.

But how do you price that segment?

Again, this depends on value, how much are people willing to pay?

Some people (seems like quite a few on the reg comment boards) prefer printed books and against ebooks on principle. You can't consider these people for pricing as no matter what price the ebook they will never buy.

Currently (I would hazard a guess that) most people value the printed work over an ebook, thus ebooks lose value (This may be because they think ebooks cost significantly less to produce).

However Ebooks have many advantages over printed books, instant download, easy to take on holiday, don't take up shelf space etc etc. So ebooks gain value.

Publishers view ebooks as another sales channel, so the per ebook profit margin must not be less than the per printed book profit margin or they run the risk of cannibalising their market.

It is perceived there is a higher risk of piracy with ebooks (which may or may not affect sales) so should the price should be higher to compensate, or lower to encourage legitimate purchases?

Also ebooks get charged VAT so they should cost more.

So how much do you charge for your ebook? Depends on how much the market values it not cost.

If you are hell bent on thinking about costs, remember you can't look at one book in isolation. The publisher has no real way of knowing which books will become best-sellers or flops so must cover the cost of the flops with the profits from the best-sellers. By taking risks on usual manuscripts they can discover great new (profitable) authors which benefits everyone, but they are more likely to discover a flop. I wouldn't like a market where all the proofread and edited books are about moaning teenage vampires.

Yet another thread to consider is the growing number of self publishers. When the costs of printing are reduced to practically zero then assuming you abandon proof reading, editing, commissioning book art and marketing and paying yourself for the time you spend writing, you can sell the ebook dirt cheap and everything is pure profit (apart from Amazon's cut).

Of course this means there is a huge number of cheap and free ebooks from unknown authors of various quality. Hidden in amongst this load of crap and spam there are a number of excellent books well worth reading. Some of these authors have spent time and money proof reading, editing, getting a good cover and generally polishing their work. However at the price they are charging and number of sales they are getting I can't see how they are covering costs let along making profit. So people are getting used to paying an unsustainable price for these ebooks.

This could be a massive threat to publishers, if they are no longer needed for publishing they how will they continue to exist? The problem that seems to be happening now is a lack of quality control in the market place and marketing. Quality control is really Amazon's problem (or Google books or Apple or whoever owns the marketplace). If this was sorted then the threat gets even bigger to publishers, high quality books from big publishers for £6.99 or high quality books from a little publishers for £0.77?

Publishers could reinvent themselves to provide services to authors, on-demand Proof reading, editing and marketing etc but this is a hell of a culture change from being a gatekeeper (and somewhat a reduction in grandeur) and there are already services offering this.

These days I tend to download a lot of free ebooks. If I find a book I enjoy and the author has other books for sale then they will get a sale from me. I get high quality entertainment for a fraction of the cost in a more convenient format. The only other cost to me is the time I spend reading crap books before deleting them.

I guess I'm glad I'm not a (big) publisher.

Anons torn over naming 'n' shaming of 17yo's gang-rape suspects

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Rape IS a hard crime to prove... BULLSH*T!

>Rape victims are easy subjects to denigrate.

As are men falsely accused of rape

The Commenter formally known as Matt

If there are pictures of people having sex circulating, that doesn't prove if it was rape or consensual.

So, like most rape cases, this comes down to the man (or men in this case) claim consensual sex, the woman claims rape. Hard to prove and get right, like most rape cases.

*If* the authorities did not investigate this properly then yes this needs to be investigated and addressed.

As you point out its up to the Crown to decide whether or not to prosecute and this will be based on the evidence supplied to them by police. I haven't read anything to suggest that they (the crown) made a bad call in this case. (Although, obviously I don't have all the facts in this matter)

West Virginia seeks Google Glass driving ban

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: Walking down a public street

>> I sure hope that many places and organizations will ban the use of glasses within their boundaries the same way cameras or phones are today.

So no Google Glass in Strip clubs and art galleries then but OK most other places

The Commenter formally known as Matt
Big Brother

Re: In South Australia

Two things:

>> Google Glass, (which among other things would be classed as a mobile phone under this law)

Really? Unless the law is really broad in its definition of mobile phone then this is one to be decided by the courts as it would be quite a jump to describe Google Glass as a mobile phone.

>> driver’s pocket or pouch excluded

Easy then, the actual Glasses frame is the pouch used to store the communication technology.

A fairly woolly law with enough leeway to keep the lawyers busy.

Ebook price-fixing: Macmillan settles with DoJ, Apple fights on

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: 5 guys

If the price fixing happens between two (or more) sellers, you have the option of buying the product at that price, buying elsewhere (possibly at a different price) or not buying the product at all.

If someone robs you then you don't have the option not to be robbed.

Theft can also include assault, threat of assault, damage to property etc etc which price fixing does not.

Do you really not see a difference?

(AFAIK) Laws against theft are fairly universal, you can't take something that doesn't belong to you. Laws against price-fixing aren't. They vary from country to country and from market to market within countries. E.G. in the UK Magazines and newspapers are price-fixed and this is legal.

Google reveals Glass details in patent application

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: So Google want to patent "HUDs"

although "Arthur C. Clarke, wrote detailed descriptions of the concept of a waterbed while hospitalized in the mid 1930s. His writings were later used as prior art to prevent a patent from being awarded in the 1960s as the waterbed started to become popular. " from http://appleinsider.com/articles/11/08/23/samsung_cites_science_fiction_as_prior_art_in_us_ipad_patent_case.html

So it really seems to depend on how detailed the description is in the book!

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: So Google want to patent "HUDs"

from http://www.iusmentis.com/patents/priorart/

"A science-fiction novel might describe an invention without going into details. While this will describe the basic idea behind the invention, it does not enable the skilled person to construct the invention. For example, the famous Star Trek TV series features the so-called "transporter", by which Starfleet personnel could be "beamed down" to the surface of the planet. However, no details were ever given on how the transporter was supposed to work, or how anyone could build it. If someone today were to invent a working matter transporter that operated in exactly the same way as in Star Trek, he would still be able to obtain a patent on it. The disclosure given in the TV series would not be sufficient to destroy novelty of the features of his transporter.

That does not mean that fiction cannot be used as prior art at all. If the fiction describes the invention in sufficient detail, it counts as prior art just like a technical publication would. "

I an not a lawyer (thank Dog) but I read that as unless those authors/books described the tech in sufficient detail that it could actually be build then it isn't prior art

Tesla's Elon Musk v The New York Times, Round 2

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: They're both full of $#!T

Tesla wanted him to write a review about the charging infrastructure, he actually wrote more about problems with the car and the charging infrastructure.

When you give a reporter a product to review you don't get to dictate what they write.

The Commenter formally known as Matt

Re: They're both full of $#!T

Your car tells you "You have 30 miles of range" but you need to go 45 miles. In the last few hours or days it has been wildly inaccurate, both optimistic and pessimistic.

You have a Tesla rep on the phone telling you to they have diagnostic info from the car and charge for an hour before continuing and ignore the predicted range and it will sort itself out.

Are you really saying you would keep on charging and ignore the experts who tell say you've got more than enough juice?

"I'd have to be deliberately trying to fuck it up in order to write a negative review.". No. Its possible you deliberately fucked it up to get a negative review, its also possible you didn't deliberately fuck it up and still had a negative experience and wrote the review based on this.