SteveG’s Techdirt Profile

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  • Jun 19th, 2019 @ 8:07am

    Re: Re: I no longer agree with you on this

    I find that slippery slope arguments tend towards the bullshit.

    My comments can't be construed as actively harming anyone. You could make the argument that a preponderance of people arguing my side could go too far, but that requires a logical leap.

    I'm not promoting terrorism. There's a world of difference. The slope isn't that slippery.

  • Jun 19th, 2019 @ 4:02am

    I no longer agree with you on this

    I used to think that your position on this issue was the correct one. But as a New Zealander I have a different perspective on this now. I don't mean "This one is special, so free speech just doesn't apply here," I mean that this is on the other side of the line.

    First, NZ doesn't have the free speech absolutism of the US. This isn't necessarily a bad thing. There are definitely times where we go too far the other way, but for comparison, leaked US State department memos complained that we had too much respect for free speech, so we aren't that bad.

    If the footage were security camera footage, or shot by observers, then I'd have more sympathy for your position. But this footage is itself part of an act of terrorism. That is different from e.g. the footage of the twin towers, which was shot by observers. This is footage shot by the terrorist. Spreading this video is his goal. He's just plead not guilty so that he has the chance to draw even more attention to his acts. Every time the video is shared, his act of terrorism increases in size. The primary goal of sharing it is to recruit others to his cause and inflict more damage on his victims; even those who themselves share it without this goal are furthering his.

    Emotionally, I would like to silence him completely. Try him in a secret court and release none of his testimony. Gag him completely. Deny him visitors. Hold him in solitary for the rest of his miserable life. But that isn't how justice or our country should work, and I hope he can be prevented from preaching and hurting the victims families further without compromising the things that make our justice system work.

    So you're free to disagree. I understand your position on free speech and I respect it. But I hope that the points above make at least some sense to you. And if they don't, well it's our country and we'll run it our way. You're free to disagree and say what you want. :)

  • Sep 25th, 2018 @ 11:40pm

    I've worked out their strategy

    The primary consumer of Monster energy drinks? Computer nerds.
    The primary consumer of Techdirt? Computer nerds.

    The endless stream of pointless lawsuits is a deliberate attempt to leverage the Streisand effect to reach their target market through Techdirt. YOU are providing them with free* advertising.

    *Free does not include millions in wasted legal fees.

  • Sep 6th, 2017 @ 12:47am

    Drugs in eSports

    I was at an eSports gambling conference where they spoke about the laws relating to doping. They're actively planning to ensure that only drugs that enhance performance are excluded.

    They aren't planning to test for THC or steroids, for instance, because neither boost performance.

    Ritalin, on the other hand, is right out. Coffee is more likely to be banned than steroids! They explicitly said that they aren't there to enforce drug laws or moral codes.

    Adding it to the olympics might force them to follow the more rigid "no getting high ever" rules, which could actually be bad for eSports in general.

  • Jul 24th, 2017 @ 12:53pm

    It's because United Breaks Guitars

    https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&am p;uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiW85SJ2aLVAhUDJcAKHV0RDIIQyCkIKzAA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fw atch%3Fv%3D5YGc4zOqozo&usg=AFQjCNGAJwl6V5_qbDQEVS865Z6aIPGmoA

    Seriously, it's because they know they treat your baggage like crap and they don't want the responsibility of protecting priceless comics. The insurance claims - even assuming no fraud - would be a huge drain on time and money.

  • Jan 23rd, 2017 @ 6:00am

    (untitled comment)

    I hadn't seen the funny comment about authors 31 years after death. Based the current record, it would seem that 4 days would be long enough to be sure that they aren't coming back, right?

  • Dec 15th, 2016 @ 3:30pm

    Just because they can't drive themselves safely

    Doesn't mean they can't drive themselves. If the engineer weren't in the car, it would still work and drive itself. Therefore it falls under the regulation.

    And as a person who also uses the roads, requiring basic evidence that the systems actually work seems like a sound idea to me. Yes, yes, slippery slopes and all that, but as I said above - it really is already captured.

    Finally, monitoring doesn't work. Humans who aren't driving a car don't have the attention or reflexes to correct. Assisted driving (where the human is expected to take over) is almost certainly going to be worse than going straight to full self-drive.

  • Aug 25th, 2015 @ 6:01am

    Pity about their choice of lawyer

    Larry Klayman's a dishonest idiot. He makes the guys from Prenda look competent and trustworthy.

    http://overlawyered.com/2007/09/inappropriate-and-unethical-behavior/

    http://www.courthou senews.com/2011/08/15/38994.htm

    He's currently representing Joe Arpaio. Enough said.

  • May 21st, 2014 @ 3:13am

    Word choice (as Steve)

    "The execution, if you'll forgive the synergy of word-choice, of the execution means everything"

    I'll forgive the use of the word execution, but using "S**ergy in cold blood is a capital offence. Please join the queue for the random cocktail of chemicals that may or may not cause an agonising death.

  • Nov 14th, 2013 @ 2:36am

    (untitled comment) (as Steve)

    "What the country's TPP negotiators are effectively doing here is to surrender key rights that belong to all New Zealanders, for the sake of some minor, and probably temporary, financial gains for a single industry with powerful lobbyists."

    You've completely misunderstood NZ here.

    This isn't "a small industry with powerful lobbyists" this is a massive industry that employs - directly or indirectly - the vast majority of the electorate.

    The government is wrong, but it didn't need any lobbying. We are almost completely dependent on Agriculture and Tourism, because we haven't developed our high tech industry properly. Yes, we could make some long term gains (which I would like) by actually protecting our creative and copyright interests, but that would be political suicide for either of the major parties.

  • Jun 7th, 2013 @ 9:38am

    Or it could be even more machiavellian... (as Steve)

    I think the story is probably legit, but once you've gotten that far, why not go full on conspiracy theorist:
    The administration was prepared for the eventual leak of the telco data. They then pile on a deliberate leak of a much more extreme breach that will grab the headlines. This is eventually shown to be false, the journalists involved are discredited and the telco thing is forgotten as collateral damage.

    I don't know how much confirmation the Guardian could have gotten before running with this story - after what happened to Bradley Manning, there can't be too many people willing to blow the lid on something this big. Therefore, it could all come down to something easily forged.

    I'm not normally a conspiracy theorist - the twin towers were an act of terrorism, climate change is real, and the only chemicals in the chemtrails are flouride :) - but this story is either true (in which case it's a conspiracy) or it's a distraction (in which case it's a conspiracy).

    Either way, this is all seriously messed up.

  • Jun 20th, 2012 @ 5:01am

    Actually, he would have been a terrible teacher (as Steve)

    My MSc supervisor had a Post Doc supervisor who was taught physics by Einstien during WW2 (he couldn't work on the Manhattan project because he was German).

    He said that Einstein would miss lectures, read directly from his notes, repeat the same lectures he'd given the day before and didn't mark the work they submitted.

    I'm not arguing the point made above - this had nothing to do with his qualifications, and more to do with the fact that he just didn't care - I just think it's interesting.

  • Mar 5th, 2012 @ 4:08am

    It's because of how they see geeks (as steve)

    The problem is that people tend to divide the world into people who understand computers and people who don't. The distinction between a games programmer and a DBA is lost on them.

    For that reason, the idea of setting up a department of people like McGee from NCIS, who seems to know everything about everything. This means that when they have a problem with mortgages, the cybercrime dept can swing into action, etc.

    The problem is that they have failed to understand that a) McGee is fictional. b) Computers are not separate from normal crime. Everything uses computers now. I think it's scary that they think it's acceptable to have investigators who aren't tech savvy, and to have investigative divisions without expert tech support.

    They would be better off having specialist mortgage fraud investigators, some of whom are experts in the computer problems mortgage fraud investigators face dedicated to the area, than expert geeks with only a hazy understanding of the specific problems of mortgage fraud being shared across multiple departments.

  • Mar 28th, 2011 @ 9:45am

    Re: The ROI was there.. (as Stephen)

    "According to their overly optimistic calculations, the ROI was there so they opened up the check book and started writing."

    It probably cost them 40 million to have an accountant write all the zeros...

  • Oct 15th, 2010 @ 10:07am

    Re: Re: Because...

    Law school is vocational - like engineering or medicine. They aren't easy, but the purpose is to produce Lawyers, Doctors and Engineers.

    The purpose of other academic disciplines is often more abstract - what career is a philosophy degree preparing you for?

  • Oct 15th, 2010 @ 2:55am

    Because... (as Steve)

    The problem is that self-plagiarising leads to being a bad academic.

    Lecturers at a good university aren't preparing you to be a . They're teaching you skills that will make you a good academic in your field. Any real world competence gained is a side effect.

    Self plagiarising is bad for many reasons. Consider a freelance journalist who breaks a story in the NY Times. They get recognition for producing it. Great. Then they break exactly the same story - not a follow up piece, literally the same thing - 6 weeks later in the Wall Street journal (for some reason, the editors haven't been reading each other's papers). Then they do it again elsewhere...

    Is this a good journalist? Well, they clearly wrote a good story originally. They did find a good market for it, something they could make a profit from repeatedly. But, like a comic who steals jokes, they aren't really adding anything new to the conversation.

    Apart from the loss of reputation they should suffer for this, it's an unnecessary waste of reviewers' time, and placing strain on an already overworked peer review system.

    Publishing a follow up piece is fine, but passing the same work off over and over again is just a lazy way to boost your publication count, and not something any good academic would respect.

    When you discuss the functional benefits of repeating paperwork and discussing self plagiarism like we are living in the real world, instead of in a university, you are missing the point of the university.

    I used to think that self-plagiarism was fine. Learning why it wasn't was an important step in becoming a good academic.

    The idea of making revisions and updates makes sense, but blatant copying of previous work is academically dishonest. Real world be damned - this is the realm of the ivory tower, and here we set rules for our benefit.

    Of course, conceding that we were talking about the real world, you have only your own reputation to consider, and in some, maybe even many, cases it makes sense. But we're at uni - at least try to understand the logic behind it before you criticise it.

  • Jan 28th, 2010 @ 3:27am

    (untitled comment) (as Steve)

    The way funding for industry tends to work where I am from, the companies being funded are expected to match the government funds in some way (except universities, who do publish). That means that 1mill government funding costs the company 1mill for a total project funding of 2mill. This means that this research would be better described as government subsidised.

    I'm not sure if that's how it works in the US, but if it is, then asking the companies to release this stuff would be asking them to give away their investment. The only way you could ask for full release is if the government funds the work completely.

    Of course, you could ask to recoup seed funding out of proceeds, or whatever. I suppose you would do that out of tax on the company, eventually.

    I figure you can make good arguments for either side of this.

  • Jan 15th, 2010 @ 3:33am

    (untitled comment) (as pedant)

    It's hard to comprehend who could be against the idea that federally-funded research (i.e., research funded by your tax dollars) ***should*** become available to the very public who paid for it.

  • Nov 11th, 2009 @ 2:44am

    The suprising thing (as Steve)

    This isn't the kind of thing that New Zealanders usually do. Normally, we'd just laugh it off. Or send a letter to the editor.

    When I read your article, I couldn't believe it. When I read the original article, though, it said that they hired a New York PR guy to do it. That makes so much more sense. We recognise our limitiations in the area of being complete bastards, and hire an expert in the field.

  • Jul 21st, 2009 @ 10:59am

    (untitled comment) (as Steve)

    This is just the fallacy of the excluded middle. Knowing stuff is important in team work.

    Jargon
    Basic facts
    Basic methods

    These are the tools of teamwork, required by all members of the team. If you lack the ability to reference basic concepts without a dictionary, things become much less effective. I've never seen high school courses or even many university courses that go past this level.

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