HymieS’s Techdirt Profile


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  • Nov 15th, 2010 @ 7:18am

    Re: Still the same anti-Europe obsession

    I'm Sorry,,, I forgot to mention,,, I order my PC's WITHOUT a hard drive. I get some static at first but I tell them if they must put a hard drive in the system, make sure it's completely blank and new and not 'erased'. I tell the supplier that the system is going into a Top Secret environment and Windows is not allowed (this happens to be true). Fujitsu and Toshiba will do this on their laptops for me. So far only Dell will sell me a PC this way.
  • Feb 25th, 2010 @ 10:05am

    (untitled comment)

    I think I'll patent the use of looking in the phone book to get someone's number. Or maybe using a reverse directory to get someone's name and address. Aren't these considered a 'database search'?
  • Feb 25th, 2010 @ 10:00am

    The big Mistake was:

    He should have filed a design copyright on his own program. Design copyrights do not infringe on patents, and last 75 to 150 years.
    The patents on 'caller id' only cover displaying the callers name and/or number. Neither patent describes the methodology of getting that information.
    If he had 'designed' a new method of just obtaining the city that the call originated in, he would have a valid copyright.
    Now if my phone is based in NYC and I am traveling to LA, and his program can show where the call is coming from and not the base city of the phone, I believe he has a valid case.
    Most existing caller id's, that I have seen and used, only display the name and number of the caller, not the city of origin, unless the callers name is hidden.
  • Feb 22nd, 2010 @ 10:40am

    Re: Re: Constitutionality?????

    No contradiction,,, They must stop because continuing would be considered 'unreasonable', regardless of what they heard.
    You do present a valid argument between 'secure' and 'private'. That argument has been presented before. If I 'secure' my trash can lid or tie up my trash bag 'securely', the police seem to feel that just in throwing something away, I have no 'perceived expectation of privacy'. I can only assume that this means there is no such right to an expectation that doesn't exist. In my neighborhood the trash sits on what is deemed "private property" until collected by the waste company. Yet the police felt they had every right to search through a neighbors trash looking for some evidence of a yet to be established crime. Even though they found nothing, teh courts found in favor of the police in a suit brought against them for 'trespass' and 'unreasonable search'. Thus the court upheld my premise that there is NO actual right to privacy. The police said they searched the trash because they "thought" this person was doing something illegal and they didn't need a warrant because the stuff was being thrown away. The fact that they came onto this person's property to conduct the search was totally ignored by the judge, who said " trash is trash regardless of where it is."
    The neighbor contended that until it was actually on public property, it was still his. He further contended that once it was on the trash truck, it was the property of the trash company and could not be searched without a warrant or written permission of the trash company. Both arguments were thrown out. WHY? because there is no such right as 'privacy'
  • Feb 22nd, 2010 @ 9:58am

    Re: if I own a computer and lend it to somebody to use

    You bring out a really good point. Who is responsible for the content of a computer? Let's assume you lend your computer to a friend and they download some "kiddy porn" onto it. You get it back, totally unaware of this. The police use some type of spyware to trace it to your computer. Guess who gets the label "sex offender"?
    I hold that all forms of spyware should be deemed illegal.
  • Feb 22nd, 2010 @ 9:49am


    First of all,,, I just love all the people that use the words "privacy" and "constitutionality" in the same sentence. If you check out the constitution, the word privacy never appears, NOT EVEN ONCE. There is NO right to privacy in the bill of rights either.
    There is NO right to privacy. Many people confuse the right to protection from "unreasonable search" to be a right to privacy. They are wrong under the current laws of this land. You don't get to decide what's reasonable. An unreasonable, federal judge gets to decide that, even if he or she is wrong.Even legal wiretappers MUST discontinue listening if the conversation does not pertain to the reason for the wire tap.
    Assuming the school thought it was reasonable to turn on the camera to check the status of the "school owned" laptop, they were morally and legally bound to turn off the camera as soon as they realized that the rightful student was using it. Even if the student was taking drugs, all information gleaned from that viewing would have been unusable in court and therefore the student couldn't even been questioned about it by the school, or the police, let alone punished.
  • Feb 19th, 2010 @ 5:49am

    (untitled comment)

    Please forgive my being naive in this matter. I want to know how Google can be named in an "antitrust" suit, if there are at least 6 other, major, search engines in this country alone. Most of which are quite large in their own right.
    I always thought that antitrust suits were based on someone trying to be a 'monopoly' and controlling the business they were in. I doubt that Microsoft Bing is going to let Google control them.
    Google has the right to charge any fees that they deem adequate, and to do business or not with anyone they choose. I firmly believe that if Google does not want to include my business in the results of a search, for businesses like mine, that's their right.
  • Feb 17th, 2010 @ 7:51am

    Re: Normal?

    YES,,,I loved my job

    I have worked as an Instructor for the last 13 years. I taught UNIX, systems administrator classes and I love that work. I woke up each morning looking forward to going to work. In 13 years I never missed a days work.
    As that business has slowed down for a while I am back to being a systems administrator now. It's not as much fun and I don't like it as much.
    As soon as the teaching business opens up some more I will leave this work in a NY minute to go back to teaching.
  • Feb 17th, 2010 @ 6:59am

    (untitled comment)

    IT people do not like their jobs because of the people they have to deal with on a daily basis. There is none of the camaraderie that other professions have.
    With over 40 years of IT experience behind me I can comment here with some authority.
    Most IT workers deal with computers almost exclusively, and not with real people. Most contact with other people is either through email or telephone, with the email taking precedence because they don't have to interact with a real person. Most of their co-workers are just like them. they are an elitist group of 'ALPHA' personalities that are snobs and so afraid of losing their status ( or their job ) that they hardly ever talk to each other, let alone share anything important. This results in corporate problems that aggravate the situation and cause finger pointing and more isolationism. The IT workplace, in general, has become more of a 'dog eat dog' environment more than any other business I know of, and I have worked in many arenas of business, both within the IT world and out.
  • Feb 4th, 2010 @ 9:19am

    A derivative or transformative work?

    Could you imagine some descendant of Francis Scott Key suing the U.S. Gov't and every professional sports team for using and broadcasting the words to the Star Spangled Banner? Remember,,, It was written as a poem,, He never gave permission to have it set to music. Or is that considered a derivative / transformative work?
  • Feb 4th, 2010 @ 9:14am

    It's all a Croc,(k),, ( pardon the pun)

    IF,,,, as it states in the article,, the song is considered a folk song, sung by school children, it should more than likely be considered public domain. Especially if it is sung in school recitals.

    Could you imagine some descendant of Francis Scott Key suing the U.S. gov't and every professional sports team for using and broadcasting the words to the Star Spangled Banner? Remember,,, It was written as a poem,, He never gave permission to have it set to music. Or is that considered a derivative work?
  • Feb 4th, 2010 @ 8:11am

    Re: My solution

    AMEN !!!
  • Feb 4th, 2010 @ 8:04am

    Anyone remember Barry Bricklin?

    Barry Bricklin was the man that introduced the original Subaru to the US. He later went on to produce his own line of cars. The 'Bricklin' was a Gull winged sports car. Now the "rub",,, It seems that a part of the car design appeared to be similar to design of a car that was made some 50 years prior to the Bricklin, and Barry was sued for 'copyright infringement'. Even though the company that made the original car had been out of business for over 50 years, it seems that the design copyrights were bequeathed to the heirs of the designer. FYI,,, I believe 'design copyrights' have a life span of 150 years, and now with the millennium copyright act, that can be renewed and extended.
    Just look at Disney,,, The original drawings of Mickey Mouse have been around for almost 80 years and are no longer being used by the Disney corporation itself. Yet they have no problem suing anyone that tries to use them.

    "Hey,,, That art looks just like something I drew on the sidewalk with chalk almost 60 years ago,,, I think I'll sue the artist,,, LOL"
  • Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 7:58am

    Re: Re: Re: DRM for real estate?

    No need for poison. Just take a 2 to 3 inch wide strip of bark off from all around the tree.
    Funny that it's illegal to cut down a tree, but not to kill it.
  • Feb 2nd, 2010 @ 7:52am

    Make up your mind?

    The county and state I live in says i can trim a tree around, but I can not take any Height off. My homeowners association says no tree is allowed to be higher than the town homes themselves.
    As for the legality,,, it's no different than the cameras that catch you going through a red light.
    My favorite question is whether a person has the right to NOT be photographed without permission? I consider my countenance to be private and viewable by EYES only. Yet it seems that the government, Banking and even the local businesses feel they have the right to take my picture or video me in public places.
  • Jan 29th, 2010 @ 12:00pm

    R U Kidding me?

    First of all,,, Let's go back to the 1940's when a young black actor in an Abbott and Costello move ( I believe it was "Hold that Ghost" ) hollers out "WHO DAT?". He then gets a reply from some distance away that repeats "WHO DAT?". He then replies with "WHO DAT SAYING WHO DAT WHEN I SAY WHO DAT?". This was over 60 years ago and the expression "WHO DAT" is in the public domain and cannot be copyrighted by anyone except,possibly, the movie studio.
    The expression WHO DAT was a very common slang expression for answering a knock on the door during the 50's. Especially in NYC.
    As for the Fleur de Lis,,,
    It has been shown and printed in every color combination imaginable on everything from the coats of arms to the flags of European households and royalty, especially the French monarchy. This symbol has been around for over 500 years and it too is considered 'public domain'. I myself have seen a family crest that has a Fleur de Lis on it, and it hails from the Austrian, Hungarian, Russian branch of the family. Coincidentally it happens to be in the same colors as the team in LA.
    Who does the NFL think they are kidding,,,? How can they even think to claim a copyright on things that have been in the public domain for ages.?

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