James G. Witte’s Techdirt Profile


About James G. Witte

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  • Jul 23rd, 2015 @ 9:32am


    Because it should be illegal for a news agency to program a drone to fly over the highway and stream live coverage of the traffic conditions--to the cloud--WITHOUT having a pilot actively flying the helicopter. If you take away the pilot's job, how will he feed his family?(and pay income taxes)

    Even if that means that the news agency can now do the same public service for less money, we have to think of the economy!

  • May 6th, 2015 @ 5:24am

    (untitled comment)

    If there is no need for a warrant, than anyone can ask for the data for any phone number. If there is no expectation of privacy, then anyone can simply request the information from the phone company. Is it stalking, if there is no expectation of privacy? And will no-contact orders now require additions to not request this information from the phone company? When I can just ask my buddy to ask for it and he/she will give it to me. How long before it is declared that phones belonging to members of the Police force or the Mayor's office have an expectation of privacy but average citizens do not?

  • Mar 20th, 2015 @ 8:26am

    generating photos is not hard

    In ref to the OP's "Never mind the fact that no one has the computing power to generate photos":
    I hate to burst your bubble on this, but yes it is not only possible but easy. First, install a flavor of UNIX of Linux on it. copy photo to it. You will find that you can now use cat as well as almost every other text based interpreter that UNIX/Linux has--by default. Using cat, you will see a bunch of ^@ and ^A and ^B and a slew of other 2 character combinations where ^ is the first character--I will call these 2 character combinations "control characters". Using these control characters, create a random generation script. Sure, 99.99% of the files created by the script will not be worth your time to display in a web browser--or other picture viewers, but what do you care. You are off eating/sleeping/partying while the computer does the work. I have not built one of these to test, but if we assume that the server can generate 1 file a second, that is 60 a minute or 86,400 a day. Just let that run for a week and then start looking at what your "1000 monkeys on 1000 typewriters" have(or is it has) produced.

    And if you spend enough time analyzing different pictures people have taken, you will find common combinations or patterns. Some people have spent enough time analyzing these patterns as to make programs to analyze pictures. davidwalsh.name/nudejs is a link for a java script based program that will detect "nude" photos. A program that can be helpful--when used in combination with a proxy server to catch your coworkers looking at pictures they should not be looking at while on work computers. or maybe to catch your teenagers at home...

  • Jun 24th, 2014 @ 7:00am

    take a page from the movies

    In the first episode of SeaQuest season 1 or season 2, the Capt(Roy Scheider) was speeding on his motorcycle and a pop-up/hidden scanner scanned his barcode license plate and then sent him a text message that his text to speech app read for him thanking him for paying his fine. Not that I want to make it easier to give me a ticket, but why has no one thought about adding a barcode to each plate that makes it easier to read our plates? Just use http://www.barcodesinc.com/generator/index.php to translate the plate's numbers and letters into a bar code.

  • Apr 13th, 2012 @ 9:15am

    security mean anything?

    Personally, there is an responsibility on me to protect my own property. What do I mean? If the court case has been going on for a while, and the link still works, that shows that I don't care about protecting my own property. And even if I have removed that 1 video or renamed the 1 video and I can simply change the URL to the directory the file is in and see ALL of the directories contents, I must want people to take everything I have. This may sound like a stupid argument, but if I'm not making an effort to protect my stuff, do I really wan my stuff protected?

    And if you don't agree, then what responsibility do I have to protect my clients credit card numbers?

    What if I have a glass house and I choose to have sex in every room and then sue anyone who watches me have sex? See my point?

  • Aug 11th, 2011 @ 4:59am

    (untitled comment)

    Reading this, I have 2 questions:
    1) Has the school Administration(teachers, principal and staff) made it known that surveillance equipment is active on the school grounds?

    - If it was known, then the kids were trying to get caught and there is no expectation of privacy.

    2) How old are these high school kids?

    - If the kids were not 18, the teachers and principal should be thankful the State isn't coming after them for watching kiddie porn and the principal should be thankful the State isn't coming after him for distributing it.

  • Feb 22nd, 2011 @ 3:46pm

    hmm.. sounds like....

    Doesn't this game sound like "Age of Empires" and Civ? hmm..

  • Mar 13th, 2010 @ 4:58pm

    trying to unconfuse John @36

    John, "Anonymous Coward" is what Techdirt calls people who don't have a log in. Because without a log in, you are a featureless blob. And then some of us, like Mike, go out there and say, "This is who I am." So there is no hiding behind the anonymous internet that is 1's and 0's. This also means you can have multiple "Anonymous Coward"s debating/arguing with each other. Hence why I specified the comment number. Hope that helps, and sorry for being off topic.

  • Mar 13th, 2010 @ 2:09pm

    (untitled comment)

    Correction: instead of(Fact - If we elect someone who take care of the people, we don't re-elect him/her.) Fact - If we elect someone who can't take care of the people, we don't re-elect him/her. where did my rant and /rant tags go? the whole tanget about Microsoft was supposed to wrapped in hmmm... and I wonder if a UNIX literal "" character is needed.

  • Mar 13th, 2010 @ 2:01pm

    my issue with this patent

    My issue with this patent is the same issue I have with all trolls(an opinion that has been stated multiple times by multiple people). But, since Anonymous Coward@17 and @20 has decided to argue, fine. Fact - the patent holder filed and acquired the patent in 2004. Fact - patents are designed to promote innovation. Fact - If we elect someone who take care of the people, we don't re-elect him/her. With all these facts listed, question - Why is it that I need to defend my actions of innovating when you filed the patent in effect promoting that you can do this and you failed for 6 years? You failed. I succeeded. Deal with it. Patent life span should be reduced to 2 or 3 years, TOPS. Thankfully, Google has challenged this point in court and won. May Google win again. along these lines, but a slight tangent, Microsoft patents putting computers into dashboards and then raves about it like no one else has the technology/ability, when in truth, no one else is legally allowed to compete. Businesses bitch when the Gov't wants to regulate them(hopefully protecting the consumer) and then they bitch when the Gov't lets them compete. gotta love it!

  • Aug 8th, 2009 @ 11:38am

    question on distrobution rights

    @Michial Thompson I would agree with you that the labels in/under the RIAA were sold distribution rights, but my question is, if I sign with a label today, make 3 songs and then decide I don't want to work with them anymore--for what ever reason. Do they have exclusive distribution rights to the 3 songs that I wrote? for all time? So, if I play that song at a concert, after I have left them, and let the fans record it live and then send the mp3 around, have I encouraged criminal activity? Have my fans committed a crime? And if that is true, do I own those 3 songs? Are they my songs or do those songs belong to the RIAA? Do I have to change my band/group/stage name because the RIAA owns that? I remember when the artist Prince didn't use his name for a time and he was called, "the artist formally known as Prince" because the media didn't know what to call him?

    To sum up, What does distribution rights entail? Can I terminate your rights to distribute my voice singing a particular song?

  • Aug 7th, 2009 @ 7:05pm

    equilibria sounds like a good idea

    I am very curious which artists are contacted and their responses. Yes, NIN has already spoken against the RIAA, but what about the others. Speaking of which, I don't remember hearing anything about the Tenenbaum team contacting NIN to get their input during the trial. I personally feel that attacking the RIAA's position of "defending the artists" would have been beneficial, whther he planned to plead guilty or not. I am also curious to see what of the $650,000 goes to who. Personally, I am not a fan of the RIAA, and only expect them to serve the labels and not the artists, but it would still be nice to see where all that money goes.