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  • Sep 15th, 2015 @ 7:13am

    There is more than one BCBS Company

    While this is a dumb lawsuit there is something that a lot of people don't seem to understand about BCBS. They are not a single company and the original article gets this all wrong.

    There are actually 60+ BCBS companies. One or more for each state. Although they are mostly owned by less than a dozen parent organizations these days.

    Each individual company has a license to use the BCBS name and trademarks from the BCBS Association. They also have a bunch of other cross company agreements through the BCBS Association to honor each others pricing when covering things that occur outside each companies territory.

    In this particular case it is the BCBS Association that is the trouble maker. Yeah a small technical detail, but a significant difference when you realize that the BCBS Association's main product is the trademarks they hold and license. They don't sell insurance themselves.

    Some of the BCBS companies are nasty profit mongers, some are not. It all depends on how they were created and in what state. One very big thing that most people don't understand about insurance is that it was and still is regulated at the state level. So every state has different rules. Which is why there are so many BCBS companies. Back in the day insurance couldn't cross state lines. Just like banks used to be.

    And a final note. I do not work for any BCBS company or any insurance company for that matter. I just know a moderate amount about them.

  • Jun 25th, 2015 @ 8:20am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Supposedly a crack is already available. Two days after release. So much for the new and improved DRM.

  • Jun 25th, 2015 @ 7:02am

    Re: Don't pick a fight with a publisher

    Even more so for a publication that is run by and for lawyers. (Where is that giant facepalm tag when you need it?)

  • Jun 1st, 2015 @ 7:41am

    Not everything right

    CDPR got most things right and they should be lauded for what they did get right. Unfortunately they still got a couple things wrong.

    First, the video they have been showing at trades shows and online for going on a year now is higher resolution/fidelity than you can actually get in the game. Even on the most high powered kit. They purposely downgraded video for everyone because of the low power of consoles.

    Second, they optimized some higher end features for only Nvidia video cards, and if you try to use them on AMD video cards you get very poor results. CDPR basically blames AMD for this.

    Finally, there are a bunch of higher end graphical features in the released game that break things completely. CDPR knew about these bugs for a long time. They still left these features in the game even though they knew they were broken. Their answer is to just turn things down. If they knew these settings would not work correctly why did they even include them?

    So they should get kudos for what they did right, but should also be called out for what they didn't get right as well.

  • May 21st, 2015 @ 7:36am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I'll agree that businesses are people when the same penalties can be applied to them as to actual individual people. For example when a business can be sent to prison for committing a crime, instead of just paying a fine.

    The problem today is that businesses get all of the benefits of being treated as a person, but very few of the same penalties apply. Businesses get away with crimes every day that an individual person would go to prison for.

  • May 19th, 2015 @ 6:14am


    Yeah, Google is top dog in the mobile ad space, but only because they bought Admob.

    There are at least a dozen companies in the mobile ad space that have annual revenue of $100 million or more. Sure they are small compared to Google as a whole, but they are players in the mobile market.

  • Apr 9th, 2015 @ 8:16am

    Decent Price

    The price is good, but not exceptional. This unit is comparable to the EC Tech units that usually go for $39-$40 on Amazon. Biggest difference is aesthetics and a 2A port on the EC Tech instead of 1.5 on the Innori.

    Personally I prefer the newer Anker units with the PowerIQ ports, so I don't have to remember which port is which amperage. ;-)

    Overall this is a good deal and some proceeds go to supporting Techdirt.

  • Mar 6th, 2015 @ 6:48am

    Nothing New

    This concept is what the classic "military industrial complex" of Eisenhower fame is all about. Once you use or show your latest weapon it will be copied and/or countered. Which in turn means you need a bigger, better, newer weapon. Of course the for profit contractors are more than happy to help build those new weapons, and of course now sell the older stuff to anyone in the world willing to pay for them.

  • Feb 20th, 2015 @ 9:32am

    Not a lot of difference

    There are dozens of Arduino compatible clones already out there. So outside of who owns the trademarked name this won't have all that much effect.

  • Feb 10th, 2015 @ 7:12am

    Not as easy to spot as you might think

    I bet they were using Microsoft Outlook and Exchange for their email. When you use this combo a senders email address is not displayed. Only the friendly person name is displayed by default, and this is easy to fake. Unless you have some technical expertise you wouldn't even know to look.

    Now personally I would double check before sending a single penny somewhere, but I know places where millions, if not tens of millions of dollars are authorized to be moved/paid with just a few emails every day.

  • Jan 14th, 2015 @ 8:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "You don't make your house windows bulletproof, and steel door, right?"

    I lived in Chicago for 13 years, and while bulletproof windows are uncommon, steel doors are pretty common. Two of the three places I lived had them.

    Also bars, but not bulletproofing, on ground floor windows are fairly common as well.

    Finally steel doors are actually less expensive than a quality solid wooden door these days.

  • Jan 8th, 2015 @ 7:25am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There are still a large percentage of people that do not know it was satire and take it very seriously.

  • Oct 22nd, 2014 @ 7:02am


    Ticket fines have been relied on as a significant source of revenue in Chicago for decades.

    One of the most telling observations I made when I moved to Chicago 25 years ago was that the vehicles driven by those giving out parking tickets do no say Police Department on them, they say Department of Revenue!

  • Oct 8th, 2014 @ 6:52am

    If only it were true

    The problem I have is that even after various liberties have been taken or given away, we are not actually any safer or more secure.

  • Aug 7th, 2014 @ 9:16am

    (untitled comment)

    I've always used the moving reason, even when not moving. It just gets things done faster. If anyone were to ever ask where to I would just give them the address of my in-laws dairy farm. The nearest town is miles away and the town is too small to even have cable TV.

  • Jul 30th, 2014 @ 8:33am

    Re: Re:

    It's pretty easy to show financial gain. It's just not all that much money in the end however.

    The autopsy photo was probably obtained at no or little cost. Maybe a couple hundred dollars of peoples time to make and edit copies of the original.

    The alternative would have been to have a special effects team create a similar photo. This would have easily cost $10,000, $20,000 or even more, to make a fake body, rent the props and location, hire a photographer, photo shop work, etc.

    So the financial gain is the difference between what they paid for the exiting photo and having to pay for someone to stage things. Nowhere near the amounts that people might think of as a "financial gain", but a gain none the less.

  • Jul 9th, 2014 @ 7:30am

    Re: Re: Re: Don't Cheapen Real Security Screw-ups

    The only time I have seen training systems that used dummy data were third party training. Every internal training system I have seen has always been a full or partial clone of a production system. In fact the training system is almost never a separate system just for training. Usually it is a test or development environment. Hell I have even seen training done on a production system.

    Sure best practice would be to have a separate training system with dummy data, but most of the world doesn't work that way because management just see's it as a extra unnecessary cost. Much like electronic/software security in general.

  • Apr 22nd, 2014 @ 7:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Oh, there are some...

    I wrote thousands of lines of code between 1990 and 1996 for an embedded system that is still sold today, with only minor changes to the code. So some of it is now 24 years old. Haven't gotten any extra money and never expected to.

  • Mar 12th, 2014 @ 8:06am

    Re: Art History majors, to arms!

    And what about all of the weapons that Michelangelo designed? ;-)

  • Jan 28th, 2014 @ 7:20am

    Profit Above All

    This is what you get when you outsource the running of the government to for profit companies. Of course those companies are going to put profit before anything else. It is their entire reason for existing.

    Sure government is bureaucratic and slow, but for some things, like background checks and security clearances, that is exactly what you want. The old school, cold war era security agency guy must either be cringing or spinning in their graves.

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