When that major failure in the Northeast happened several years back, I remember early cries of terrorism. My reaction: "It has to be an accident, no government could have coordinated something this big without 50 years lead time and a staff large enough to populate a small nation. Forget about a group of terrorists doing it."
About the only way I could see a really large induced failure would be coordinated physical attacks on the major switching points. And even then the failure-to-take-out ratio would be so high that the results would be limited.
The film did not use a specific story adaptation, but the plot of the central computer system taking the first law to extremes was an adaptation of things that Dr. Asimov raised once in an early story, and increasingly in his later robot stories/novels. To that degree, they did explore a question that Asimov himself raised, except that the movie brought the thread to a conclusion, wheres Asimov himself had left the options open in the last work of his that I am aware of.
Also the police detective with a distrust of robots was taken from The Caves of Steel and later novels in the series, although the distrust was not as extreme in the books. Susan Calvins attitude towards robots was also reasonably consistent with her portrayal in print.
I know, off-topic, but credit where it's due. I'll even say nice things about Microsoft on those rare occasions when they deserve it.
Re: Re: Re: Re: Look at it from their (uneducated) viewpoint
I tend to take the position that is is wrong to hide the underpinnings so thoroughly that the slightest variation from the usual paralyses people into helplessness.
There have been any number of times I've made myself bleed by having to bite my tongue over being called in to solve a problem that only existed because the user of the system treats it as a magic box, simple problems that would have been easily solved if the user had even the faintest clue of how computers work.
In an era where people take pride in ignorance (how else could you explain books with titles like "X for Dummies" or "The Complete Idiots Guide to X"?) bad regulation of technology is pretty much the only way things can go.
While I'm generally against the idea of law as a way to solve a problem, perhaps we need a law that says no one is allowed to regulate some subject until they can converse about that subject with subject matter experts without those experts laughing, crying, screaming or vomiting.
The only time I purchase deliberately sabotaged software is when I am paid to do so. (Yes, people pay me to work with Windows.)
Other than that, I don't buy anything that has lockdowns, activation codes, or other such garbage.
Software that is designed to fail gracefully when things go wrong is not merely acceptable, but expected.
Software that is deliberately designed to fail, regardless of the reason, is unfit to exist. If the programmer(s) logic is so distorted that engineered failure is considered acceptable behavior, can you really trust the program with your data? Of for that matter, on your machine at all?
(Virtual machines, a cage for potentially feral software.)
Censorship would be removing the comments completely so that no one could get at them. All the hiding does is say to anyone passing by "Here there be idiots." People can simply choose to lift the sign and see the stupidity if they either don't trust the group judgement or think it might be funny stupid instead of burning stupid.
My current worship for a singing goddess is Nanne Grönvall, who I only know about because of what the copyright maximalists would call theft. (I watched an AMV.)
How they would explain a theft that resulted in my tracking down all but one of the albums I know her to be on via various international sellers (that part is easy, finding ones with English web pages was a bit more work) is an interesting thought. The one album I can't get is her least successful, yet I can't seem to get anyone who has one to part with it.
And for good measure, I tracked down Princess Tutu from the AMV and bought the series box set.
Actually, Cingular IS AT&T now. The old AT&T ceased to exist a while back. SBC bought the assets, including the name, and instead of taking the opportunity to bury it once and for all, they adopted the name and have been trying (and succeeding quite well) to live down to the name.
The only time I go to theaters anymore is when friends ask me to go with them. The theater experience is so bad the people I am with serve to distract me from some of it.
Let's see. Tickets that cost more than is reasonable for a disc of the film, concessions (which I have not purchased in well over a decade) priced worse than the films, ads running any time a film isn't.
After some time spent around 30 years ago doing some research on the subject, I am convinced that it is illegal to exist, and that anything that is possible for a human being to do is illegal under some or another idiot law. As a result I laugh whenever I agree to terms of service that mention illegality, since I can't have done anything legal for decades. Passing this new law is just lazy as there are probably several hundred laws already lurking that could be used for far worse than anyone has speculated yet on SOPA.
It should still be set aflame before it can be voted on.
Someone has just flagged themselves as a net.newbie.
At least to those of us who pre-date the whole concept of the internet.
"First off, stop with the /. Its annoying and serves no purpose."
Before HTML infested the net, there were generally-accepted ways to specify things like *bold* and /italics/. These do indeed serve a purpose. They can give an indication of intended formatting, and yet not be stripped out of e-mail by a working security system. They are also are visually easier on non-HTML supporting systems than <i>italics<'/i> and <b>bold</b> and a lot faster to type.
You have been looking at this backwards, Mike, putting the horse in front of the cart so to speak. I'm sure you are younger than I am but I remember seeing black market video tapes at flea markets alongside bootlegged cassettes. Then the movie producers implemented Macrovision to thwart the piracy on VHS.
The interesting thing about that is that the industry got special treatment on the issue. Strictly speaking, Macrovision was a form of sabotage. The closest equivalent to todays terminology would be a denial of service attack. The process took advantage of a design flaw in most VHS decks to disrupt the intended function of the device. Early Beta decks were not affected by this, and the flaw had to be deliberately designed into later generations for it to have the same effect as on VHS. Beta decks could copy the tapes, Macrovision and all.
In just about any other industry, the equivalent of Macrovision would have had a number of corporations on the wrong end of a lawsuit. Outside of the copyright industry, the law takes a very dim view of sabotage.
Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta really needs to figure out the modern internet. It is no longer possible for anyone to do stupid and not have it broadcast world-wide. This sort of dick move (amusing thought given one accusation leveled at her) is doing far more damage to her reputation than any satire/parody/sendup/etc could ever do. I had no particular opinion of her before, now I have an active dislike. Way to sell your music, Stef.
And, yes, using her given name means what it does when a parent uses it to a kid, "ya screwed up".
Most TV torrents I download have some form of logo in the corner. How do you deal with those? It's how the industry operates.
For most things I don't. The practical effect of logos is that I know little of what has been on TV for the last decade. I either have to wait for it to be broadcast in a civilized country or wait until it hits DVD, and then I have to have heard enough good things about it to make it worth anything other than ignoring.
I can't watch regular TV because of the blasted things, and convincing me to buy discs of something I haven't seen is not the easiest sell you can attempt.
For some things, the blur filter in Mplayer suffices, but then I have to be motivated to go to the effort to specify the parameters of the bug.