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Internet giants place full-page anti-SOPA ad in NYT boingboing.net
407 points by andrewdumont  8 hours ago   83 comments top 20
protomyth 6 hours ago 3 replies      
The tech industry has enough money to buy 10x more lobbyists than the entertainment industry. This would be a wiser investment than the ads.
thematt 6 hours ago 4 replies      
If Google was serious they'd put something on their front page. The readership of the New York Times is nothing compared to Google's traffic.
ck2 7 hours ago 2 replies      
Where is the url in there for more information/followup? Wasted opportunity.

I don't mean to diminish this effort but just imagine this kind of response every time we decided to declare war somewhere far far away. I'd be impressed. Certainly sending people to be maimed or killed is just as critical?

jamiequint 6 hours ago 0 replies      
There was also a full page ad in today's Wall Street Journal, same letter. http://pic.twitter.com/jisFPt4s
mikemoka 7 hours ago 3 replies      
Web companies should know how to write a readable text, it's pity they could just come up with something like that.

This text is not coincise, it doesn't draw the attention of the reader to any specific point and it shows several other shortcomings, if the message ever comes across I am pretty sure this page won't help.

damoncali 5 hours ago 5 replies      
Am I the only one that did a double-take when I saw Zynga on there?
grandalf 5 hours ago 1 reply      
If you're in the tech industry and you realize how stupid this proposed law is, realize that it's no more stupid than the vast majority of laws passed by congress, you're just better equipped to judge it.
bobbles 6 hours ago 1 reply      
95% of people would look at that wall of text and turn the page.. they really needed something that would actually draw in peoples attention if they want it to get noticed
muppetman 5 hours ago 2 replies      
This is great. It's just a shame the last time anyone picked up a paper was about 10 years ago. Can't argue with the sentiment though.
natch 2 hours ago 1 reply      
A TLDR skim of this ad by the average NYT reader will see only this: We support the bill.

Yes, I omitted the words "goals of the" [edit: 's stated goals] but I'm talking about what the average reader will get out of the ad before they flip to the next page.

Not good, imho. And yes, they do care about the average reader. If they were trying to reach people other than the average reader, there are better ways to do that.

dmboyd 3 hours ago 1 reply      
> We support the bills' stated goals "providing additional enforcement tools to combat foreign "rogue" websites that are dedicated to copyright infringement or counterfeiting"...

Why doesn't anyone just call bullshit on the whole concept of the US extending its law to apply to the rest of the world?

therandomguy 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I wonder if we can start a site called PoliticiansAgainstInternet.org, get it a lot of publicity and sway the votes away from them. It should be so popular that politicians will dread getting on that list. Maybe Anon can dig up more dirt and expose it on there?
jpdoctor 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Full page ad? Big deal. Obviously they screwed up by not buying a bunch of senators and congressman.


d0mine 6 hours ago 1 reply      
The irony. The giants of Internet advertising spread their message via dead-tree paper ads.
artursapek 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Very nice. It's a nice touch that the logos at the bottom are in alphabetical order. I want a copy of this
baby 5 hours ago 1 reply      
What is also impressive is the presence of Zynga in the internet giants club.
roxtar 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Did anyone notice the missing Godzilla-head in Mozilla's logo?
swasheck 7 hours ago 4 replies      
Well played, MS and Apple.
sidwyn 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Besides the gist of the ad, I noticed that Facebook did not use their logo without a background (AOL too).
Igor_Bratnikov 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Glad to see a public stance by the internet community
If you want to get rich, stop being a fucking joker sebastianmarshall.com
48 points by sthatipamala  1 hour ago   31 comments top 23
nirvana 17 minutes ago 2 replies      
I can identify with what sebastian is experiencing here. Its easy to work with friends, or be friendly with your employees. Its easy for things to get casual. Its easy for people to start running everything by you.

Its VERY easy for the sense of urgency to just go away. Its very hard to get people highly motivated about time. It's easy to kill an entire day with BS, and let things just stretch out. Especially when you're an employee, and you're working for options. Options are so intangible. You're theoretically motivated, but on a day to day basis, do stock options get you doing 6 things in an hour instead of 3 or 4? Especially if your boss isn't there? (And if your boss is there then you're likely to be inhibited.) It's really easy to kill time by running everything thru your boss too... it lets you cover your butt, and you can read HN while you wait for him to make a decision.

I don't know how you teach initiative... but this is a good attempt.

Find a way or make one. Good advice.

Its a shame most of the comments on this seem to be reddit quality. Almost as if the people making them have never been in this situation. (and this was the situation I found myself in at my very first startup-- when we all felt we had no clue what we were doing, and tended to wait for direction, rather than take initiative.)

rkon 6 minutes ago 0 replies      
At first I thought this was posted by one of the email's recipients as a form of revenge on its douchebag author. Then, I realized it was posted by the author on his own blog... how embarrassing.

The whole letter/blog simultaneously reeks of desperation, egotism, conceit and condescension. He clearly craves validation and doesn't hesitate to dole it out to himself. "I picked you guys because you're the best! Now quit sucking and start being awesome like me! Money money money!"


spydum 50 minutes ago 1 reply      
I certainly don't understand the context of the email or the people involved, but that seems extraordinarily douchey. Perhaps I'm the exception, but when your primary focus is on being a multi-millionare, you are missing something from your life.
CoffeeDregs 26 minutes ago 0 replies      
This post represents subpop-management nonsense. People are complicated but there are, in fact, things we can do to work with each other. "Commitments" can be considered real things and we can hold each other to them. You either fulfill on a commitment or you don't. If you don't, then fuck you and you're RIFed. If you do, then you're part of the team. (An aside: why is fulfilling on commitments part of being excellent?! Shouldn't it be a criterion?!)

If you don't consider "commitments" to be real things, then you run round and round the what-are-we-doing-and-why-didn't-you-do-it circle... And then you write a blog post.

Update: freeloaders/non-fulfillers are a real thing. I'm one of them. Generally, I perform at a very high level, but I'll dial it back if I'm under the gun and a client unintentionally indicates that they're not one to assess slippages accurately. Unlike most freeloaders, I wake up at 3AM and think about how to fulfill against a late commitment.

ianterrell 56 minutes ago 1 reply      
Stop being a joker! Don't make excuses! Everyone has reasons! Fuck reasons!

Also, I can't do it, because I'm otherwise engaged.

commieneko 31 minutes ago 0 replies      
Spend whatever you need to get it done, but I'm not willing to pay a top designer his normal rates even though I'm having him do a rush job at 2am. But that's okay, I'm being very cool with him and I promised him I'd recommend him to other big shots.

Well, the "top designer" is an adult, we assume, and can make his/her own decisions, but I stopped falling for that kind of bull shit 25 years ago. A good designer is worth paying good rates. Despite lavish praise as they walked out the door with "my miracle", I never once had any of those "big shots" ever show up again, much less provide me with any kind of value in return.

(Now on a side note, I've done spec work and/or above the call of duty rush jobs for customers who've done well by me _in the past_. Or on very rare occasions, I've pulled rabbits out of hat for new customers who were _refered_ to me by very good customers. Maybe that's what's inexpertly being alluded to here. But I doubt it.)

jeffreymcmanus 54 minutes ago 1 reply      
You know who's a joker? The guy who "got a top creative designer in there working for a fraction of his normal cost by being very fucking cool with him, and also working out a deal where we refer him business". That's who.
davidmathers 1 minute ago 0 replies      
tldr: Impossible is the Opposite of Possible
coryl 26 minutes ago 0 replies      
I can sympathize and understand with what he's writing.

I know it seems douchey and shallow to a lot of you, but when you work remote with a team of friends, things tend to get far too casual and eventually everything falls apart altogether. Suddenly everyone has an opinion on design decisions, or a meeting needs to be held on whether we should use Mongo or MySQL, and we should just think about it on our own time and get back together next week for more discussion.

Complacency is really the biggest enemy of the side project / remote team. And so making excuses becomes easier and easier as time progresses.

Someone has to step up and lead, so maybe a motivational speech is just what the team needs. The points about partying and making money might matter to his team, maybe its why they're working on the project in the first place. (And none of us can say that the excitement of making money doesn't motivate us).

So the man makes it clear where he stands; step up and get shit done, or leave and be a joker. Do you want to sell sugared-water for the rest of your life? Or do you want a chance to change the world?

drawkbox 5 minutes ago 0 replies      
I know when I finish a project I call up the 'forces of hell' on my side. It's needed for that last 10%=90%.
tikhonj 52 minutes ago 0 replies      
I can't help feeling that that was written by a cross between a motivational speaker and a mafia don.

The letter had an interesting voice and was well written; however, it immediately set off unconscious alarms in my mind. It was trying to influence the reader too coarsely on too emotional a level; I do not like that sort of thing very much.

enigmabomb 32 minutes ago 1 reply      
So let me get this straight. This guy is fronting the money on his credit cards, can't do any of the work, and gets people to do things for him by "Being very fucking cool with" them?

Yeah. Keep your money. Fuck your business cards. You sound like sales guys scum trying to leverage the real makers in this project.

jen_h 14 minutes ago 0 replies      
Coffee is for closers or something.

We like to think that having money fixes things and we can just throw cash wildly into the air while making definitive exhortations and all will be well. We will be Gods or something! But unfortunately, it doesn't, not usually. What's pretty broke without cash doesn't typically get fixed when you shove its gullet full of coinage. Every once in awhile, throwing money into a whirlpool works, and when it does, you should totally record that shit. Put it on YouTube. But not what preceded it, no way.

chubs 38 minutes ago 0 replies      
Reminds me of the story of steve jobs, when he dropped the original ipod prototype into a fishtank to force the engineers to make it smaller:
'See? Bubbles? That means there's air in there. Make it smaller.'
kevinalexbrown 26 minutes ago 0 replies      
"Find a way. Or make one."


"I'd do it myself, but I can't, because I'm doing something else that takes all my time."

kevinalexbrown 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
This guy kind of seems not necessary to the whole project, aside from small amounts of funding. If he's spending 12-17 hours a day on something else entirely, what is he personally doing to advance the project?

Did he just have an "idea" and hire a bunch of engineers "find a way or make one?"

softbuilder 10 minutes ago 0 replies      
How does this guy have time to blog about it?
ervvynlwwe 55 minutes ago 0 replies      
What did I just read?
bprater 27 minutes ago 0 replies      
Where does the "forces of hell" reference come from?
treetrouble 25 minutes ago 0 replies      
The term is slacker, not joker.
raheemm 29 minutes ago 0 replies      
I loved it!
rakkhi 40 minutes ago 0 replies      
Can't help but wonder if this is going to start all the pro vs cons for swearing in posts again. It would be great if everyone did everything they said they would to the deadline but in reality the unexpected happens and if you get this draconian people just will not commit to anything
bprater 26 minutes ago 0 replies      
Where do I sign up to work for this company?!
Show HN: The Clip kickstarter.com
17 points by pkrein  50 minutes ago   3 comments top
Sweet sanity: 75% of Americans say infringement fines should be under $100 arstechnica.com
111 points by evo_9  5 hours ago   53 comments top 9
JoshTriplett 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Even better than the statistic quoted in the title, 48% of Americans don't believe any fine or other punishment should exist at all. The quoted statistic actually refers to 75% of the remaining 52%.
brc 18 minutes ago 0 replies      
Surveying people on what fines anything should be is ridiculous.

I once made the mistake of surveying people what software product prices should be. Surprise surprise the average was about $15, which I suspect was just as much as they could say without actually asking for free.

eli 32 minutes ago 0 replies      
Err, I wonder what percent of people think parking tickets should be under $5. Not sure that means it's a good policy.
wmf 3 hours ago 3 replies      
While that is just plain common sense, there are still problems. If the fine is no great hardship and your chance of getting caught is less than 1%, it's rational to always infringe rather than pay. Raising the rate of enforcement would be hard since $100 doesn't cover the court costs and thus the industry would be losing money on every case " even ones they win.
qjz 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Only 52 precent of American adults support punishment at all

It seems the real story is that 48 percent support no penalty at all. Why the misleading (and inaccurate) headline?

joshAg 4 hours ago 2 replies      
personally, i think that anyone caught infringing should pay a fine equal to the cheapest retail price (over say, the past year) of the thing infringed(like for like, if you pirated the hd version of a movie, you have to buy the blu ray or hd dvd version. if you took a cam'ed version, you have to buy a movie ticket), iff they do not already own it.

yeah, there's a whole bunch of issues that would have to be ironed out and yes, there's no proof you would have even bought whatever you infringed on in the first place, but i feel like its a much saner starting point than what we have now.

anigbrowl 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Those darn social science majors and their worthless degrees. If only they would get real jobs! http://piracy.ssrc.org/the-copy-culture-survey-infringement-...
duairc 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Oh come on, where are there so many copyright apologists here? Even if you're a capitalist the concept of intellectual property doesn't make any sense.
pagekalisedown 5 hours ago 7 replies      
In other news, bank robbers say bank robberies should be punished by fines under $100.
Williams: Master of the "Come From" github.com
115 points by ColinWright  6 hours ago   14 comments top 8
dasil003 4 hours ago 2 replies      
This is an illuminating example of how different assumptions lead to different definitions of what makes good code. I'm convinced that this is one reason why there is this belief that 80% of programmers are incompetent. It's not there aren't truly incompetent devs out there, but it's also easy to assume someone is incompetent just because they were working from different constraints and experiences than you, and the way they did things just isn't immediately apparent.
angelbob 5 hours ago 0 replies      
This is cute. I had to Google to get the Williams / Jim Kelly thing from Enter the Dragon.

An awesome article. Inspirational in the same way as Steve Yegge's Wizard School bit (http://steve-yegge.blogspot.com/2006/07/wizard-school.html).

mey 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I hate this coding style. It combines expert system knowledge with spooky action at a distance, which means in anyone else's hands it will break and delay development. Horizontal changes that aren't readily indicated in the code paths that are effected are confusing. (One of the many reasons monkey patching can be considered an anti-pattern)

I guess the longer I've worked with other developers, I prefer readability first, test-ability second.

46Bit 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Have to give the author (and Williams!) credit - that's a damned neat developing style to my mind. As always, running into it when a client is yelling down the phone would be painful, but it is interesting to consider. Certainly it's a strange approach with virtues, unlike much of the beyond-spaghetti you sometimes run into.
listrophy 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Point this article to any hot-shot developer... if they don't come away with a new smidgeon of self-doubt, slowly back away: he/she isn't worth working alongside.
headbiznatch 4 hours ago 0 replies      
This nicely draws together several sub-currents of developer thought pertaining to the "am I good at this?" current that all developers have. I found myself bouncing back forth on some of the ideals, waiting to hear how it all turned out for this developer... Basically the same feeling I get from a good short story.
ilaksh 2 hours ago 0 replies      
To me it looks like the increasing popularity of AOP and richer (or at least more functional) syntax in languages like Ruby, the relative ubiquity of property chaining and two-way data binding across different frameworks, is moving towards a more semantic type of software specification where structures and relationships are more important.

I think that's pretty obviously a good thing since it reduces the cyclomatic complexity, coupling, amount of code, and increases reuse, although you can obviously take it a little far when you are actually using a mostly imperative paradigm.

I think this is one of the types of things that is going to (eventually someday) finally wake people up to the limitations of unstructured (although colorful) ASCII source editing.

sloafmaster 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I wonder how much groveling he had to do to get his code to run... http://www.catb.org/~esr/intercal/stross.html
Mozilla urges its users to raise their voice against SOPA mozilla.org
616 points by Indyan  17 hours ago   37 comments top 13
kpozin 15 hours ago 3 replies      
If only Google or Facebook would use their homepage status to get the word out to the majority of the population. A blacked-out Google Doodle or a notification at the top of the Facebook newsfeed would go a very long way.
Indyan 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Mozilla is rotating this call to action on its browser homepage (about:home), which is heavily trafficked.
subpixel 13 hours ago 0 replies      
To explain this to friends & family, tell them to watch this video: http://vimeo.com/31100268 - or just the part from 1:08-2:31
zerostar07 16 hours ago 1 reply      
Coincidentally, "Sopa" in Greek means "Silence!" [or "shut up!"]
law 13 hours ago 1 reply      
For all those who are interested, http://judiciary.house.gov/hearings/hear_11162011.html is the link to the hearing's webcast, which began at 10 a.m. EST.
VladRussian 9 hours ago 1 reply      
the more government oppression applied to the Internet - the sooner a government oppressure resistant alternative would emerge. The current Internet is a great thing, yet it is fundamentally flawed by being that vulnerable to any whimse of concentrated political and economical interest.

While it can't be presicely described how the future free Internet would look, it is possble to imagine some modern implementation of something like the old Fido network with a set of satellites and cables/floats in the international space and waters and the next generation WiFi that will have on the scale of couple orders of magnitude greater range.

rcthompson 8 hours ago 1 reply      
If someone asks you what SOPA stands for, you can tell them it's the "Stop Online Privacy Act".

It's only a Hamming distance of 3 from the real name.

scubaguy 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I can't wait for someone to post a link to the Pirate Bay in the comments, thereby providing legal justification for taking down sites that criticize SOPA.
sabret00the 15 hours ago 2 replies      
I wish they would've done the same thing for the Digital Economy Bill in the UK.
mrchess 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Is it too late to do any sort of petition since the hearing is today?
silentific 11 hours ago 0 replies      

"The service is not available. Please try again later."


NanoWar 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Are there online petitions in the US?
yuioooo 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Teaching Good Sex nytimes.com
29 points by c0riander  2 hours ago   7 comments top 6
Shenglong 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
I recently (well, a few years ago) went through sex education in schools. They don't really teach you sex, as much as why you shouldn't have sex. Even when they're teaching contraception, the consistent emphasis on only x% effective really cuts out student interest. It's almost like saying, "yeah we have a method or preventing HIV transmission, but it doesn't really work." While it might seem like a good idea at first, I found it to quickly invoke the I'm not listening anymore response.

Next, is the issue of effectiveness. Personally, I've been shown way so many gross images of venereal diseases, that I I won't even touch without knowing I have protection. Unfortunately, this doesn't follow through for a lot of other kids who went through the same education as I did. "I was drunk", "we didn't have any", "it doesn't feel as good", and "it's too much work" are all (yes I know it's sad) frequently cited responses among people I know.

Thirdly, and most troublesome of all, some people don't care that they're spreading diseases. I recently found out someone I knew was receiving treatment for Hep B. I asked her when she found out, believing this to be a recent development. "I've had it all my life," she responds. I walked out of the room. She's quite active, and her disdain for condoms are legendary. How anyone can exhibit that kind of carelessness is honestly, beyond me.

Rather than force education, I feel we might have to take a completely different approach. Teaching is great, but it doesn't work when kids don't want to listen or don't care. Perhaps we need to stress the why here, rather than the how.

Lastly - I know this is really aside the point of this article, but schools should probably also teach how to have sex properly. Not using condoms, but common erogenous zones, sensing feedback, appropriate pressure, etc. It's kind of sad that we learn all these things by exploration, again and again, generation after generation. I think it's about time we standardized it. Everyone needs to (well, almost everyone) have sex one day, anyway.

_delirium 1 hour ago 0 replies      
How to tackle this well is a difficult question, so it's interesting to see someone trying. I think sex tends to fall along with personal finance into the category of things most people end up doing without learning anything about it first, or at least, not learning very well. About the most you can hope for in either case is a few don't-do-this rules of thumb being taught in school or via public-service ads, like "use a condom" and "don't rack up huge credit-card debts".

I assume it'd work differently for different students, but for a subject some people find awkward, non-classroom sources of information might also be useful to think about. The internet makes it so that few people are really strictly unable to access a huge range of information. But is the information out there good and well organized? Wikipedia, as often, is probably the least-bad high-profile thing out there, but I'm not sure that Wikipedia on sex-related topics is actually that helpful for a teenager; it somehow has an odd focus, half pop culture and half clinical.

veyron 54 minutes ago 1 reply      
The real problem here is that many parents have very strong opinions regarding teaching sex in school.

obligatory south park reference (nsfw): http://www.southparkstudios.com/full-episodes/s05e07-proper-...

giardini 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
They may not know how to do long division or compute an angular velocity but, by damn, American kids are going to know how to fuck properly!

I am pleased my tax dollars are so well spent. "Female ejaculation" - sheez...

russell_h 1 hour ago 0 replies      

    In its breadth, depth and frank embrace of sexuality as, what Vernacchio calls, a
“force for good” " even for teenagers " this sex-ed class may well be the only one
of its kind in the United States.

Up until this point I was thinking how much this class sounds like the "health" class I took in 8th grade. And my teacher taught barely beyond the curriculum, I sat in on another teacher's health class that probably violated all sorts of policies and went much further than this. If there were two such classes at my middle school, I can only imagine this isn't really that unique.

Show HN: HourlyPuppy heroku.com
87 points by jfi  7 hours ago   42 comments top 12
bobbles 6 hours ago 0 replies      
It wasn't until after 'Version 1.0' that I realised this was about pictures of puppies and not actually letting people hire puppies for cheering people up in the hospital or something
ChuckMcM 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I thought this was touching. I wonder if you could hack one of those picture 'frame' gizmos so that it just came up with a new picture of a puppy every hour. No browser, just a sort of 'happy fun time pictures' picture frame.
steve8918 6 hours ago 3 replies      
Can you actually copy someone else's images and serve them from your own website, or does that violate copyright? If you find someone else's images, should you instead link to the original site?

I'm actually asking because I'm curious, I don't know what the actual answer is.

johnnyn 6 hours ago 3 replies      
This would actually be great if I could rent a puppy for an hour for my kids or something. Maybe you should turn this into an AirBnB for pets. I'm sort of kidding, but sort of serious. I bet PETA would love you ;)
angryasian 2 hours ago 0 replies      
ericd 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I would love to be able to sign my girlfriend up for hourly email updates... (I was planning on doing that, but I ended up having to just tell her about it)
raheemm 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I want a new puppy with every refresh.
rglover 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Make sure to check out the little message with the paw next to it in the top right corner on refresh. Nice touch.
jobby 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I love you. You are a hero.
joshmanders 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Awesome job! I sometimes see great ideas like this and smack myself. "Why didn't I think of that?!"
rwar 4 hours ago 1 reply      
In addition to e-mailing for Submit Puppy, have you considered adding a Drag-and-Drop or a Browse/Upload? (You could even add a captcha!)
whackedspinach 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I need one every minute.
Backbone.js and Capsule and Thoonk, oh my A scalable realtime architecture andyet.net
47 points by evilpacket  5 hours ago   3 comments top 2
jeromeparadis 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Looks quite promising. I've played a lot with node.js, Redis and pub/sub wrappers around socket.io and I came to the conclusion that it's this kind of architecture that does the job of scaling well horizontally until Redis becomes the bottleneck.

I'll dig in the source code as I'm very interested in how it's implemented.

collint 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I don't see anything to deal with conflicts and operations crossing each other on the wire. The sort of thing that Operational Transformation deals with.
Google Music now available to everyone in the US google.com
68 points by mrsebastian  6 hours ago   57 comments top 17
angryasian 6 hours ago 1 reply      
the artists hub, and sharing.. are really the killer features of this release. Also the fact they are allowing artists direct control, like distributing concerts and any other tracks they'd like to share is a pretty awesome feature.
krosaen 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I like the artist hub, and streaming / syncing offline of my library. But I really don't like the absence of a subscription option to listen to whatever I want. I can't imagine paying nearly the price of one month premium rdio or spotify service for a single album anymore. If they are going to charge per album, they really need aggressively low pricing like lala.com did for "unlimited web plays" (~$1 per album).
DonnyV 2 hours ago 1 reply      
So when is Google Music going to be added to the Data liberation page? https://plus.google.com/settings/exportdata I would really hate to have all my songs be held hostage in Google Music.
majika 52 minutes ago 0 replies      
Is it still possible to create an account with a US VPN and use it from elsewhere in the world forever more?

What payment options are available?

brown 5 hours ago 5 replies      
I now listen to the majority of my music on Youtube. Most of the songs I want to listen to are there. For free. And legally.

It kills me that Google, owner of Youtube, would not directly integrate Youtube and Google Music. I can only assume this is once again a limitation imposed by the RIAA. Sigh.

phzbOx 3 hours ago 1 reply      
You know the question the VCs always ask: "What if google decided to attack your market, what would you do?" I guess it's a sad day for a couple of promising startups.
mindslight 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Awesome - yet another way to support those backing SOPA.
darrellsilver 6 hours ago 3 replies      
Tried to upload music and received this hilarious message: http://yfrog.com/ocygcp

After trying a 2nd time through the non-wizard interface, it turns out all 72 of my songs on this machine are iTunes DRM'd. Humph.

kleiba 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Every time I see a cool announcement like this one, I'm painfully reminded that Germany is 10 years behind in every possible way when it comes to digital entertainment. I am nor jealous, just really sad.
Toddward 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm extremely interested to see how today's Music announcements will tie into Google's rumored GDrive plans.
Qz 3 hours ago 0 replies      
It still refuses to show my cloud music (as seen through the web app) on my phone. I've been using Amazon's Cloud Player instead with no problems.
semenko 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Boy, the Android Music Market sure has some great pricing options!

(Googling for it, it's a multi-disc album that appears to have caused some parsing issues. Amazon's copy: http://www.amazon.com/Bird-Complete-Charlie-Parker-Verve/dp/... )

JoshTriplett 5 hours ago 3 replies      
Following the link took me to a page demanding that I agree to additional terms of service first, but dragging that window out of the way revealed the indication that Google Music won't work without Flash, so I didn't bother going any further. More sites should provide that kind of information before signup; thanks for that.

Hopefully they'll create a non-Flash version at some point in the future, at which point I look forward to trying this.

sologoub 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Love how Chrome popped a warning that not all content on the page is secure, asking whether to load it or not. Don't load option was recommended... LOL!
melvinram 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Not everyone. I had to request an invitation and don't have one yet.
Raphael 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Too bad I don't have $25 to register as an artist.
johnbatch 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Since it's run by the Android team, I guess there is never going to be an iPhone app.
RIAA claims you do not own your iTunes music purchases extremetech.com
123 points by mrsebastian  9 hours ago   56 comments top 18
larrik 8 hours ago 3 replies      
It seems to me that deleting the original file is hardly good enough.

I think that a secondary market for digital works is something that will just never work like it does for physical media, and that's something we just have to accept and move on with.

My biggest worry is that ReDigi is going to end up losing a lawsuit that sets a bad precedent and makes future better technologies impossible.

That said, the RIAA's ownership vs licence vs access debate is BS, and they never even stick to it.

The RIAA needs to change course soon, because unlike the book and movie industries, I can easily imagine a future without a music industry at all.

As for Amazon vs. the authors? I think they are pretty much both wrong, and I'm staying out of it.

einhverfr 4 hours ago 0 replies      
This distinction between license and ownership underscores the need both for open source software and also for expanding such models into other spheres. Here I am defining "ownership" as "economic ownership" namely the right to utilize a good in any way one wishes to (following Hilaire Belloc's definition of ownership). Here ownership of a copy is distinct from ownership of the ideas or expressions in the copy, and the question becomes what you own when you get a copy of a piece of software or a recording of music.

With a piece of software, what you own is typically restricted by a clickwrap agreement. You agree not to exceed your client access license ownership with server software for example. With music what you own is the right to listen to that music for your private enjoyment only. With software you get some limited economic ownership, but with music you only get non-economic ownership.

With open source software you get (nearly with the GPL and complete with the BSD license) full economic ownership. You can connect as many clients to the server software as you want. You can deploy it for customers. You can use the software in any way you wish to use it, and you can combine it with other goods to produce goods for resale. Only in this last area are there any limits to what is owned with open source software, and then only sometimes.

I don't believe that musicians right now know how to benefit entirely from creating entirely open content, but musicians could compete at the moment in part by offering additional ownership of their music: get my songs, play them in your store, display my videos publicly to an audience of 500 people or less per viewing, ensuring that people are buying not only entertainment but also that the music has value. The fact that it has value means it will be played more. The fact that it will be played more means it provides more advertising for live shows.

bluedanieru 3 hours ago 0 replies      
The RIAA are hypocrites of course as they have purposefully crafted an inconsistent legal position regarding the rights of consumers and musicians (with the intended effect being an answer of 'none'), however ReDigi's business model is fucking stupid. Taken to the extreme, you could use this to build a streaming service whereby the end-user only owns access to the content at the moment they are listening to it. I.e. you transfer the license to them, deduct some token amount from their account, stream the content, then refund it minus a percentage after the user is finished and no longer requires the license. That this might be technically legal under the current copyright scheme only underscores how ludicrous the whole game has become. Moral? Don't participate in it. Don't buy content if any of the money will make its way back to the RIAA, or the MPAA for that matter, as they are the ones fucking everything up and standing in the way of progress in the first place.
earbitscom 8 hours ago 2 replies      
1. This service is ridiculous and I'm embarrassed that they raised nearly as much funding as we did for it. Who on earth didn't see this coming?

2. Deleting "the original" when it's so easy to have your own other copy somewhere doesn't do anything. How do they even begin to answer this concern?

3. How can the RIAA argue in one breath that you don't own their product, that it's just a license, and argue in court in another breath that they don't owe artists an increased royalty on licenses (vs purchases)? These guys do an awesome job of making sure everyone hates them. It's too bad that their interests are aligned with artists in some cases, because they only make it harder for reasonable people to have a leg to stand on.

reginaldo 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I was surprised by the following:

The Guild voices some valid concerns, including the fear that publishers might try to prominently position loss leader books in the lending library in order to drive sales of other authors " but this sort of activity is already prohibited by existing clauses and is more an issue between publisher and author than anything that involves Amazon.

Why is such strategy (using a loss leader to sell other stuff) prohibited? What is the rationale?

sliverstorm 6 hours ago 2 replies      
This just in, RIAA claims you do not own the food on your table, you only license it for consumption.

(But really, would you be surprised? God help us if RIAA gets their hands on a patent for a wheat genome. It sounds ridiculous and sensationalist, but this is the RIAA.)

feralchimp 7 hours ago 1 reply      
The RIAA is, shock/horror, right in this case. First Sale Doctrine is not a free pass to make copies of digital media.

A friend of mine is the principal at SmartFlix, so I've had the opportunity to hear a lot of rubber-meets-the-road detail on first sale doctrine over the past few years.

tedunangst 8 hours ago 2 replies      
"If ReDigi's service can accurately prevent users from accessing songs they've sold to the service, then the RIAA's rights have been legally preserved."

Big if. How is ReDigi going to prevent users from downloading song backups from dropbox?

VladRussian 7 hours ago 0 replies      
it is easy. If you own you re-sell what you own. If you granted the rights under the license, you re-sell the rights granted under the license until the license states that the rights aren't transferrable. You agreed to the license. All this licenses and ToS are complete crap, yet until the law changed, the law seems to favor the crap. And by complacently agreeing to it, we help to proliferate it.
jneal 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Unfortunately I feel ReDigi is most in the wrong here and not necessarily the RIAA. All someone has to do is go into their iTunes and redownload the file they previously purchased, or make a copy before making it available to ReDigi. It may have been meant to be a legal way of selling used songs, but I feel that is just not possible in a digital world.
comex 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Yet another site which has a totally crappy and broken mobile interface, with no option to revert to the regular interface. :(
sjwright 4 hours ago 0 replies      
How is ReDigi fencing the acquired music files? Who is buying second hand digital music?
leeoniya 7 hours ago 0 replies      
while there is nothing that prevents you from making copies. there can be a certificate of original purchase issued to you and registered/signed to a specific user's public key in a cloud database.

upon sale of the electronic item, you can re-sign/update the cloud cert with the new owner's key. so if a it came to proving that you own the music, you can reference a cloud database and decrypt the signature.

it's really the only way forward that comes to mind without being invasive but still allowing enforcement.

dlapiduz 6 hours ago 0 replies      
So moving my iTunes library within my computer or even restoring a backup would mean thousands of unauthorized copies of that music.
The RIAA needs to update their practices.
tomp 6 hours ago 1 reply      
How is Amazon going to prove that at no time did it's users lend more books than Amazon bought from the publishers?
andymoe 6 hours ago 1 reply      
You never owned your iTunes music purchases - you are licensing them. Take a gander at the EULA you clicked through without looking at.
robert_nsu 5 hours ago 0 replies      
No, I (obviously) can't download a car.

Apparently, I can't send a file to someone else and remove it from my iPod, Galaxy S, Blackberry, office and home pc either.

lekashman 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I was really intrigued by the section on Amazon in this article, in that they don't bother with licensing and go directly to purchasing the book so they can lend it. I think that Amazon's practice in this regard is much more significant than ReDigi's activity as it could spell out how future libraries function with regard to ebooks.
Airport full-body X-ray scanners banned across Europe as unsafe geek.com
351 points by ukdm  16 hours ago   107 comments top 16
wbhart 11 hours ago 2 replies      
Now that the rotten things have been banned, I can tell my story without fear of being locked up. I went through a body scanner on a trip within Europe about a year or two ago. There was no random selection, they were just forcing everyone through the machine (I assume it was an x-ray but didn't actually have time to check). This machine was of the variety that did not have an operator viewing the images in a private room, but the operator standing at the machine had a display mounted on the machine itself (some parts of Europe are much less fussy about nudity). When I went through, the image was indistinct but showed "concealments" all over me (I was also permitted to see the image). The guy looked concerned and started to pat me down so he could figure out what these "concealments" were. After twenty seconds or so it was clear to him that I had no concealments and he confidently pronounced that the machines actually don't work if you are sweaty. Hilariously, a full bottle of water went through the (bag) X-ray machine unnoticed in my backpack. I pointed it out and they were kind enough to accept that I had left it in my bag accidentally and let me have it confiscated instead of what ever else it is they do with someone who has bottles of dangerous liquids like water in their bags. Since that humiliating experience I have travelled by plane in Europe as little as possible, taking the Eurostar train wherever practical. I do not travel to the US any more for any reason. I am delighted the machines are unsafe and have been banned, but naturally I believe they should have been banned on grounds of them being ineffective and an unnecessary invasion of personal privacy.

Edit: I reviewed the information here: http://www.jaunted.com/story/2010/1/5/163631/3181/travel/Ful...
and I do not know which type of machine it was. Frankly, it doesn't match the description of either. There were no rotating walls, it did not take 40s, yet it was not a vertical wall. Unfortunate. It would have been nice to know.

tallanvor 15 hours ago  replies      
While I'm happy to see them banned for any reason, I'd much rather they were banned on the basis that they constitute an unacceptable violation of peoples' privacy.
jashkenas 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Read the original reporting at ProPublica instead: http://www.propublica.org/article/europe-bans-x-ray-body-sca...
mmcconnell1618 15 hours ago 9 replies      
Keep in mind that there are 2 types of machines in common use. 1) Backscatter (X-Ray) and 2) Millimeter Wave (Radio) and they operate very differently.

Based on what I've read I'm comfortable with the millimeter wave system and have some concerns about the backscatter x-ray system. However, if the backscatter system operates correctly then the amount of radiation exposure is really quite small compared to the amount you'd receive on the actual flight. I still think I'd opt-out of the backscatter system until long term effects and performance are studied.

Tip: Millimeter wave looks like a circular telephone booth, Backscatter x-ray looks like a big rectangular wall you stand in front of.


ck2 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I think we need to start handing dosimeters to anyone working around the machines.

They aren't allowed to have them and will get fired, problem solved and I have zero pity.

danssig 14 hours ago 2 replies      
A reddit user on the real reason the US is buying these scanners:


Spearchucker 13 hours ago 1 reply      
The part that annoys me is that the security clearance process at airports is invasive. It serves no purpose other than to provide the perception of security.

Policy dictates that passengers are not allowed to carry any weapons onto airplanes. The scanners and other mechanisms are used to detect firearms, knives with blades longer than 6cm, and so on and so forth.

The ridiculous part is that you clear security, go into duty free, and buy a bottle of whiskey which you're allowed to take onto the airplane.

If you're so inclined, once on the airplane break the bottle and threaten a passenger or the airhostess with it.

That makes the whole process (at huge cost to the tax payer) a complete farce.

There are other crazy things we're paying for, like finger printing, and forgoing the right not to have our laptops and phones searched. Anyone who wants to get around these measures can. It defies belief.

rmc 11 hours ago 0 replies      
prawn 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Just back from the US. Saw what I assumed to be these machines in use in LAX but couldn't understand the point as it was trivial to just pick the security lines that had the normal "doorway" scanners. I was pretty blatant in changing lines too once I'd seen the larger scanners ahead, and no one seemed to pay any attention.
techiferous 5 hours ago 0 replies      
> plus the fact 300+ “dangerous and illegal items” have been detected by employing the body scanners.

300+? Needs more context. What's the percentage of false positives and false negatives? And what's the cost compared to other alternatives?

noduerme 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I don't think I'll be donating to the ACA or the ACLU to help out the TSA cancer victims who stood next to the machines...
vizzah 14 hours ago 2 replies      
I couldn't remember seeing many (if any) x-ray scanners in European airports - it's almost always regular metal detector gates.
X-rays do cause cancer and must not be used in airports. Enough using terrorists as an excuse, there are much easier targets - but it's been quiet for a while and hopefully continues that way.
wedesoft 5 hours ago 0 replies      
As far as I know the full body scanners are terahertz scanners. They do not use X-rays. An X-ray scan would show your bones!
Also if you really want to reduce your exposure to radiation, you should avoid flying itself.

That said, if there is a significant increase in cancer among TSA workers, that should be a cause for concern.

jamgraham 10 hours ago 0 replies      
The opt-out process is very easy in America. For example: When I fly out of SFO and am in line for the body scanner I simply ask for an opt-out and they quickly take me over for a pad down. No big deal, all you have to do is ask.
nobody31415926 11 hours ago 0 replies      
That's because the Europeans have never had a problem with terrorism and so don't know how to respond.

(It turns out that the IRA and ETA are just cultural groups misunderstood by the British and Spanish imperialist oppressors and Baader-Meinhof is too hard to spell so doesn't count.)

bauchidgw 13 hours ago 0 replies      
visit geek.com with your ipad, its such a classic example of a redicret loop. (swipeware sucks)
What Jeff Bezos Knew Back in 1997 That Made Amazon a Gorilla forbes.com
128 points by andrewvalish  10 hours ago   29 comments top 12
InclinedPlane 9 hours ago 3 replies      
I'd add to this: the most sure fire way to dominate a market is by executing with a combination of skills that do not naturally tend to go together.

Google succeeded by combining high quality software engineering with cutting edge computer science research and beyond state-of-the-art data center operations.

Apple succeeded by combining solid software engineering with equally solid internet services engineering and more than anything exceptional design and aesthetics.

Amazon succeeded by combining solid web development with state of the art inventory management and fulfillment processes.

It's easy to do one thing well, there are literally millions of talented people in the world who can do one thing exceptionally well. But to be a company like Google, Amazon, or Apple you need to have a combination of talents that are typically unusual or difficult to keep together.

There are so many tech companies out there who have a band full of guitarists who all have the same musical tastes and background and they wonder why they haven't conquered the world yet.

asr 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Most of these points strike me as contrary to traditional lean startup advice--e.g. it's ok to expend a huge amount of resources without seeing results for 5-7 years, and it's important to be first in a big market.

Obviously, this worked for Amazon, and there are some opportunities you won't be able to take advantage of in any other way, but it's certainly high risk. I mean, Pets.com arguably followed much of this advice.

I suspect what really separates Amazon from the pack is their actual customer experience--but that's only 1 of 6 points here.

chubot 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Yup, that is why I bought Amazon stock in 2005 (really, from an interview that was very similar to this one). Jeff Bezos talks about long term thinking and also executes on it.

I think it also relates to the point made a few weeks ago about Silicon Valley being ADD in some respects -- chasing the hottest new thing, rather than conscientiously building value over years. I think someone said something about Bezos choosing Seattle for that reason. He wasn't from that area like Bill Gates -- he was in NYC I believe and moved out to Seattle to start the company.

michaelpinto 10 hours ago 2 replies      
My favorite: "It's ok to make mistakes but it's not ok to be timid." I know in silicon valley that sort of thinking is encouraged, but in most of corporate America it's very rare.
ahi 1 hour ago 0 replies      
"Infrastructure web services had to happen."

Honest question, why? I'm glad they did it, and Amazon is pretty good at it, but I'm not sure why it was inevitable.

hsshah 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I observed these traits from a unique vantage point.

Worked with the "world's biggest auction site" for 8 years since 2002. I remembered the pride the company had about it being profitable from Day 1 and the dismissal of Amazon for not turning any profit for so many years. The company had strict quarterly goals and any decision, no matter how appropriate, if it hurts the quarterly goals was discarded.

Comparing this myopic view with Amazon's patience, stubbornness and customer focus; it's no wonder that Amazon went from half to more than double the market cap of my previous company.

alecco 7 hours ago 0 replies      
A great article but it lacks reference cases to compare with. We easily fall for survivor bias.
jpwagner 7 hours ago 0 replies      
thesash 9 hours ago 0 replies      
It's an impressive testament to Bezos's vision and integrity that he was able to both articulate these principles early on and stick to them for 15 years.
vaksel 6 hours ago 0 replies      
stuff like this is pretty much why my online shopping is almost exclusively done at Amazon.

Even if it's a few bucks more compared to some other site, I just trust them not to screw me over.

ofca 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I would just add that all these things are common knowledge. The most remarkable thing he did is - he followed and delivered on all those things. Just look at number 2:"Think long-term meaning 5 " 7 years, not 5 " 7 months". Almost every sane person knows this. But only few deliver. It takes a lot of guts and integrity to undertake such a journey, and Jeff made it look easy. Great guy.
Macsenour 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Just curious, couldn't we apply all 6 of these to Groupon? I think you'd get a "yes" on all of them.
Show HN: Tunebox, Dropbox + iPhone = cloud music service apple.com
110 points by phil  9 hours ago   33 comments top 10
phil 9 hours ago 3 replies      
This is my new iPhone app. Been working on it for ages now. I've always wanted a cloud music service I could just drag files into, and I realized Dropbox would be the perfect platform for it. The goal is to make a music player that's as good as the built in Music app - I think I'm pretty close

There's a fair bit of tech below the surface in this app, for stuff like song discovery in the background and getting track metadata. Happy to answer questions about that stuff.


Geekwire posted about it: http://www.geekwire.com/2011/tunebox-listen-music-dropbox-ac...

30s demo video here: http://yearofcode.com/tunebox

endlessvoid94 8 hours ago 0 replies      
With a Mac version of this in the Mac app store, you can seriously compete with iTunes and iCloud as the music solution for many people.

Kick ass.

gravitronic 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Thank you for making this! The existing dropbox music apps are terrible, you have to select songs one by one instead of streaming entire directories. Thank you. Going to download when I get home.
gurgeous 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I participated in the beta. This is a nice app, well done. Dropbox and music - two great tastes that taste great together.
run4yourlives 9 hours ago 4 replies      
This is a good app, but Dropbox would be very expensive as a cloud platform. Wouldn't it make more sense to use Amazon or something cheaper?
kittxkat 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I actually use a similar Dropbox Music setup to seamlessly sync my music via WiFi. I use Android, so sadly I can't check out your app. But it sure looks great, and I would definitely use it!

For those w/Android who would like to use Tunebox -- I use:

1) Music folder within Dropbox, keeps all my music in synch even when switching computers (I use many different computers/laptops, and sometimes my phone isn't in reach but I'd like to listen to my tunes). I have the 50GB plan, my library uses about 20GB of it.

2) The super-uber-incredibly-awesome DropSync[1] Android app which syncs one folder from Dropbox in the lite version. Which is more than enough for me! New music, which I downloaded to my Dropbox on my computer some time earlier gets wirelessly synced for daily use with my phone as soon as I connect to a Wifi. So awesome!

Seriously, I feel like DropSync is the best-kept Android app secret ever. Use it, if you use Dropbox.

[1] https://market.android.com/details?id=com.ttxapps.dropsync

sidwyn 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Can I save them for offline playback? My 3G connection can be rather intermittent sometimes.
sjaakkkkk 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Very nice app, have been looking for this for some time as I wasn't pleased with dropbox only playing one song. However, the app doesn't recognize the names etc of most of my music and has organized it pretty messy. Is there a way to make it better organized in the app? Or can I change my id3tags etc?
skiplecariboo 5 hours ago 0 replies      
what the difference with apps like Songbox ? I remember trying it and it was so slow..
aam1r 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Great app! Does the app cache songs? (ie. can I listen to them once and then listen to them offline?)
TSA Puts Off Safety Study of X-ray Body Scanners propublica.org
138 points by danso  9 hours ago   29 comments top 6
VladRussian 9 hours ago 1 reply      
"There are currently 500 body scanners, split about evenly between the two technologies, deployed in airports. The TSA plans to deploy 1,275 backscatter and millimeter-wave scanners covering more than half its security lanes by the end of 2012 and 1,800 covering nearly all lanes by 2014."

potential risk to such a huge contract with a company Chertoff is profiting from seems like a pretty darn good reason to delay the study.

ck2 9 hours ago 2 replies      
Give the gift of a dosimeter badge this holiday traveling season.

(TSA agents aren't allowed to have one, maybe the brighter ones will start to wonder why.)

psychotik 8 hours ago 3 replies      
How much harm do the scanners do to TSA employees who are around it for hours each day? If it's shown to severely affect them, or if they can be 'scared' into believing it does, it might solve this problem once and for all.
Gaussian 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I rather enjoy loudly opting out every chance I get. I say it loud enough so the whole line hears me. And really, who doesn't enjoy a nice pat down? Sadly, my complaints have not yet convinced anybody else in these lines to join me. Sheep. Yet I'm the one corralled into the opt-out pen.
DrHankPym 7 hours ago 5 replies      
It amazes me that people continuously complain about these things, yet nothing ever changes. People still go through the scanners, and the TSA keeps buying more.
hello_moto 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Ever since the introduction of plastic, we, human being, are slowly doomed.

This is not to say that X-Ray is good or bad. Just that, the cause of cancer is everywhere and it becomes our lifestyle.

Announcing Cappuccino 0.9.5 cappuccino.org
66 points by Me1000  7 hours ago   16 comments top 8
robterrell 7 hours ago 1 reply      
The past year I've spent a lot of time developing with Cappuccino and it's been great.

I started using Atlas. I wonder if Atlas will get any love, or if I'll have to figure out how to convert my CIBs to XIBs?

Me1000 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I especially want to thank our new team members. They've really put a lot of work into this release. You guys rock!
phillmv 7 hours ago 5 replies      
Has anyone built something cool with this yet?
Slevenbits 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Change log here if you really want all the nitty gritty details: https://gist.github.com/1370087
mrspandex 6 hours ago 1 reply      
And here I thought all the coffee names were stolen by Java...
mrsteveman1 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Any tutorial for using all this stuff together in Xcode?

There's a 3rd party package on the site that is probably supposed to add syntax highlighting and such but it seems out of date as of Xcode 4.2.

steilpass 7 hours ago 0 replies      
davisml 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Congrats cappuccino team!
Computer scientist Roger Craig built an app to prepare for Jeopardy domination. thenextweb.com
129 points by soy714  12 hours ago   22 comments top 4
georgieporgie 6 hours ago 2 replies      
I somehow missed the data-scraping introduction, that he sourced a fan-operated website that archives questions and answers. Here I'd thought he'd just off-handedly created a phenomenal data scraper for the general web.

He didn't talk much about the algorithm he used to present questions for optimal memorization. I imagine it was spaced repetition, as used in SuperMemo:


zach 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow. This is a far more thorough approach than the experience-focused app I made in 2007, but then again Roger Craig is also a lot better at Jeopardy! than I am.


klochner 10 hours ago 2 replies      
I'd like to see Roger go up against Watson, since both were "trained" for Jeopardy
zitterbewegung 10 hours ago 4 replies      
The only thing I can get from this article is that he created a study tool that wasn't a set of papers or a document but actually a computer program. I don't see how this has any significance other than he created a computer program. I wish there was more information to this article other than fluff.
Yipit Django Blog: Why You Need a Git Pre-Commit Hook yipit.com
79 points by nantes  10 hours ago   11 comments top 6
njharman 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I can't get behind pre-commit hooks.

1) Sometimes (usually the worst times) you just need to check something in, maybe it doesn't pass pep8 but when service is down nobody gives a shit.

2) Instead of promoting thinking and caution it promotes attitude of "hey check it in and see if it sticks".

Post commit hooks that report broken tests, poor code, etc preferable to whole team are far superior. After first couple of times being shamed people will actually look over their code, run tests, run pep8, etc to verify the commit isn't bogus.

notaddicted 8 hours ago 0 replies      
This is what I use with django+south to prevent forgetting to commit migrations:

  MIGRATIONS_DIRECTORIES="$(find -type d -iname migrations)"
UNTRACKED_MIGRATIONS="$(git ls-files --exclude-standard --others -- $MIGRATIONS_DIRECTORIES | egrep '(.*)[.]py$')"

if test -z "$UNTRACKED_MIGRATIONS"; then
# If there are no untracked .py files in the migrations directory, do nothing, allow commit.
# If there are untracked files in the migrations directory print a warning message.
echo "Warning -- Untracked files in the migrations directory"
echo 'The commit may be forced with "git commit --no-verify"'
exit 1

jonasvp 6 hours ago 2 replies      
This is my pre-commit hook for Django projects: https://gist.github.com/858223

It just runs pyflakes and does some sanity checking. Best of all, it doesn't go around stashing files or otherwise messing with your working directory or repository. It just uses some git plumbing commands to copy the current index (what you're about to commit) to a temporary directory.

I can't remember where I copied it from but it works perfectly, only copying whatever I'm about to commit:

     git diff --cached --name-only --diff-filter=ACMR | xargs git checkout-index --prefix=$TMPDIR/ --

I can't say how many times this saved me from leaving a pdb.set_trace() in a view somewhere...

adient 48 minutes ago 0 replies      
I think it's a bit overkill to say any pre-commit hook that doesn't stash before running is 'wrong'. If nobody thought to stash before checking the files, maybe nobody else has a workflow that would require it. For me, staging and committing happen in immediate succession, so there wouldn't be any edits that aren't staged. If you work in a way that requires it then go right ahead, but what's the deal lately with calling everyone else 'wrong'?
dave1010uk 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Here's my bash pre-commit hook to check for PHP syntax errors and accidentally committed merge conflicts: https://github.com/dave1010/scripts/blob/master/git-hooks/pr...
fbuilesv 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Maybe I'm misunderstanding you, but you have to commit locally before pushing to Github so that is not a problem (you do it on your machine before the `git push` to Github).
Show HN: I gave up on the project I'd been working on, so I open-source'd it github.com
22 points by Jarred  4 hours ago   12 comments top 7
christiangenco 27 minutes ago 0 replies      
To those that want to play with it:

1. Download zip: https://github.com/Jarred-Sumner/Jantire/zipball/master

2. cd into the directory and run "bundle"

3. Sign up for the scribd API: http://www.scribd.com/developers/signup_api

4. Get your API key and API secret: http://www.scribd.com/account/edit#api

5. Add these to "config/initializers/rscribd.rb" along with your login information on line 5 ('email','password')

6. rake db:migrate

7. rails c: c = Course.new(name:"Biology").save; User.new(email: "example@email.com", password:"password", password_confirmation:"password", teacher:true, first_name:"John",last_name:"Smith", courses:[c]).save

8. rails s; open 'localhost:3000'

9. Login

10. ???


Screenshots: http://imgur.com/a/fIxNN#0

MatthewB 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Dang..you've been working on this for a while. Why did you give up?
veyron 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Have you looked into solutions with deeper integration? I am thinking of WebAssign. iirc they work with the textbook publishers to give more integrated problems (i.e. they would take a textbook problem like "What is the derivative of cos(3x) with respect to x" and would make 3 a magic variable such that each student would see a different problem such as "What is the derivative of cos(4x) with respect to x" or "What is the derivative of cos(5*x) with respect to x")
shimi 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Check out what edmodo (http://www.edmodo.com) are doing. Same concept with almost 4.5 million users.
Rinum 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I hope the project is of use to someone out there. Best of luck on your next project!
aymeric 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Sorry English is not my mother tongue: what is a turn-in box?
jontonsoup 3 hours ago 1 reply      
No tests?
Fun Fact of The Week -- How quickly do startup companies generate revenue? firstround.com
11 points by jkopelman  3 hours ago   1 comment top
brc 14 minutes ago 0 replies      
I would say the propensity for the average person to spend money on either software or software services (ie, web subscriptions) has increased markedly over the last couple of years.

Maybe that's a result of the App Store opening up people to the idea of paying for software/services, as opposed to the old 'everything must be free' internet model.

But to me the trend must be being driven by an increase in consumers willing to pay, rather than by some dramatic ability of founders with more monetizable business models.

Tell congress to stop SOPA with a physical letter sendwrite.com
560 points by colevscode  1 day ago   92 comments top 43
wallawe 1 day ago 7 replies      
Although I applaud the efforts here, as a former staffer and intern for a congressman, I hate to be the bearer of bad news...

The truth is my job as an intern, as was the job of all other interns that I met while in DC, was to take constituent calls and also open constituent mail. However, no information was ever actually relayed to the congressmen. We had a formatted response to each and every issue that the House could possibly vote on. Everything from internet poker, to any issue you could imagine. We would print out (and alter if necessary) the response to tailor it to the individual that called, emailed, or wrote a physical letter. The congressman's signature was stamped at the bottom of the letter and sent back to the constituent, giving the allusion of due diligence on the congressman's part.

I was extremely surprised and disappointed at the same time at how commonplace this was. Pretty much every intern I asked about it went through the same drill. It's just another thing about our government and "representative democracy" that really irked me. So whenever I see ads urging people to call or write their congressman, I think back to this and realize further how powerless we really are.

The best way to exert influence over your congressman is to donate lots of money and become a memorable name that can get in contact with the actual representative him/herself. Hell, that's how I got the internship. This is one of the reasons I sympathize with the OWS movement.

danielsoneg 1 day ago 2 replies      
I was briefly skeptical, but on reflection, I like this for three reasons:

First, email just doesn't work for contacting Congress. They get entirely too much, and it's entirely too easy to get lost in the pile. It's the preferred means of communication for most of us on HN, but it's just not effective outside our industry. Phone is better, but there's nothing quite like flooding someone's office with paper to convey the will of the electorate.

Second, SendWrite is one of the companies that would be hurt by the bill - being able to generate volume like this shows the reach and effectiveness of their lobbying efforts. Sacks of cash are the backup currency of Congress - Votes are still the coin of the realm.

Finally, you guys are putting your cash on the line for this - that's a powerful statement, and I applaud you for doing so.

epi0Bauqu 1 day ago 2 replies      
I'd love to send people to this site, but I worry people who have never heard of the bill won't know what is going on. Can you embed the explanation video or point to or something?

Edit: I see you just did. Thx! I just linked to it on DuckDuckGo as well as donated and sent my letter. Thanks again.

possibilistic 18 hours ago 0 replies      
I know this doesn't have a snowball's chance in hell of happening, but I wager if Google, Facebook, etc. were to shut down their websites for an entire day--or even part of a day--that congress would get the picture. Give the entire Internet a blank page stating simply and concisely what is at stake. Just imagine the deluge of calls.
ubasu 1 day ago 2 replies      
This is great action on the part of SendWrite.

One suggestion: since you ask for the sender's home address anyway, why not use that to scrape the contactcongress website to automatically fill in their representatives?

dylangs1030 1 day ago 0 replies      
This is a great idea. I'm sending in mail through this. Not everyone has the luxury of literally stopping by in person, but this is a fantastic alternative.

I love this, though I've held back on commenting on SOPA until now. One of the frequent comments on SOPA I see is that the original founders behind the internet believed it should be free and unregulated. While I agree, once you introduce capitalism to the internet, as most companies have, you cannot let it be entirely unregulated. What is happening in the internet now is the same process that occurred directly after the industrial revolution - first there were completely unregulated, grievous abuses in the industry. The entertainment industry is attempting to regulate the flow of information and "capital" in the same way the government had to go "trust buster" on the industrial sectors in the last two centuries.

However, while this is all good and well, as the side video explains, they already have protocols for doing this. They don't need any more methods of stopping piracy and the like. They should shift their attention to different ways of raising capital and earning revenue. The system they have isn't working, but erring on the side of regulation instead of erring on the side of libertarianism is still erring. There needs to be a comfortable balance, and SOPA does not make such a balance - it tips the scales in favor of the entertainment industry, and that is the last sector of the United States the internet should be supervised and moderated by.

steauengeglase 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Just a bit of advice from back when I was sending letters over the DMCA.

If your congressman is supporting the bill, don't bother. My Senator at the time was Fritz Hollings; came from a poor district, so he was dependent on a lot of outside contributions. I recall Disney being one of his largest contributors. I received a response 3 months after it passed that more or less told me I was a enemy of commerce. I won't lie, I was a little shocked to get back such a pointed letter when I was as courteous and respectful as possible.

I learned my lesson from that one. You can send a letter to anyone and generally it is a great idea, but if they get a dime from your position's opposition, it is just pissing in the wind. It's just business.

billpatrianakos 23 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm impressed. SendWrite is doing good while promoting themselves and it makes an awesome first impression. I never thought of using them before. I never even visited the site, just heard of them and generally got the idea of what they do. I think I may use them now! I'm actually looking for an excuse!
padobson 17 hours ago 0 replies      

From my letter:

H.R.3261, the 'Stop Online Piracy Act', is going to be the Volstead Act of the 21st Century. Like Prohibition, creating draconian laws like these to stop online piracy is going to do two things: 1) destroy respectable businesses that thrive on user-generated content and 2) drastically increase the number of pirates online by expanding its definition, and in doing so, massively expand online piracy. SOPA will literally create a generation of internet bootleggers.

riordan 1 day ago 1 reply      
Here's the problem: after the 2001 anthrax scare, all mail sent to Congress has become incredibly delayed (on the order of weeks) while it gets tested and radiated. What some lobbying campaigns have done to get around this is send mass faxes to congressional offices overnight. It's like having access to someone else's office printer and that person has 1/538th of control over the federal government.

The takeaway is, unless these letters are hand delivered, I doubt theyll reach their intended recipients in time.

pizza_lover 16 hours ago 0 replies      
hi all,
as a chinese, let me explain what's the situation in China. maybe you already know we have a similar censorship system called GFW(the Great FireWall of China).

when the government don't want we to see the truth of something, or something may be a threat to them,they will ban it incruely, sometimes they even do it in the name of "for the children" or "for the harmony society" or give their version of totally-bullshit “truth”.

besides the baning of website, they also have some people take salaries from government and speak for the government in every forum when scandals of government officials burn out.and when scandals burns out government also send orders to every website, every press to stop talk and publishing on the scandals, the reason they give is "for the harmony of society" or "don't be mislead by the media in US and Euro" :D

what's more almost every big website/application in china has employees either hired by government or hired by website/software-company to censor the users' activities, including QQ(biggest IM in china, just like MSN), Youku & Tudou(biggest two video site, like youtube), renren(biggest SNS in china, like facebook), baidu(biggest search engine in china, like google).if you said something bad to the government, your words must be deleted, what was worse, there used to be 2 men chatting using QQ, and the owner of QQ--Tencent Compang--give their chats record to the police ACTIVELY, and the result is the 2 men was sent to prison.

so if you allow your congress to pass SOPA, you know what would happen to you all.

chrischen 1 day ago 3 replies      
Really nice of you to have made this free. I would have paid! I wouldn't have sent this if not for sendwrite, just because the cost for me to type, print, stamp, and mail an envelope is too high.
mschwar99 1 day ago 0 replies      
Its really great of you guys to offer this service on your own dime - thank you. Its also very shrewd marketing, and I hope it pays off for you.
sev 1 day ago 0 replies      
Great idea! I hope everyone uses this service as soon as possible.
daguar 1 day ago 1 reply      
Does any advocacy group (EFF, etc) have info on who the key swing/undecided/"marginal" votes are?

Knowing that we could try and focus dissemination of this to people in those districts.

curiousepic 1 day ago 0 replies      
alexholehouse 1 day ago 0 replies      
This is great. What's the cashflow situation here - how many donations will you/do you need (I'm aware this is obviously demand dependent, but I'm just intrigued about the general situation)
dschobel 1 day ago 0 replies      
Nice work guys. Thank you for doing this.
bpowah 1 day ago 1 reply      
I absolutely love the idea. I cant remember where I read it or heard it, but physical letters do get much more attention. Nothing against SendWrite, but I think even more attention can be gained via distinctive-looking enveloped letters that need to be cut open and unfolded. A stack of similar-looking postcards will have an impact in terms of volume, but will likely be sorted into a bin and never read. If you have the time and have extra company logo-ed envelopes, please consider sending one by hand as well.
prawn 1 day ago 0 replies      
Have always wondered if an online service for political mailings like this couldn't introduce some randomness to the opening, key statements and closing (Sincerely, Regards, etc) and varying the layout and style so they don't look too much like they were cranked out with the push of a button.
jneal 1 day ago 0 replies      
Thanks for this. I wrote my letter and probably wouldn't have done so without the help of this website. This is one of the first times that a bill has come up that I feel so strongly against. If this thing becomes law, we'll all refer to the internet "before" and "after" this moment. I certainly hope it never comes to be.
kschults 1 day ago 1 reply      
Thanks for a great tool.

A suggestion: I'd like to be able to send a letter to all of my representatives and senators at once, instead of having to fill out the form multiple times.

gourneau 1 day ago 0 replies      
Thanks guys! I donated a small amount, hopefully it will pay for my letters.
mceachen 20 hours ago 0 replies      
I just submitted my letters to my representatives (and donated, thanks Cole!)

To hit up your reps with different communication channels, http://www.contactingthecongress.org has voice, fax, and web forms.

lukejduncan 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Is this a one off website or based on some framework? This seems like a very powerfully general purpose advocacy tool.
gus_massa 1 day ago 0 replies      
The names in the DropDownList Control are invisible in IE8: http://imgur.com/7UIbT
101000101 1 day ago 0 replies      
If you are really serious about taking a stand on this bill, then the most impact will achieved by going to the source of it, not Congress... unless you have more to offer Congress' incumbents and the nation's economy than the industry source does.

They are a very important constituent.

If a large number of consumers stopped purchasing a certain entertainment company's products for one day, would it have a noticeable impact on their revenues? How about a week? A month?

The industry claims it's losing business to pirates. While it's probably true to some extent, it is speculative and nearly impossible to measure accurately. How many of the consumers of pirated content were never consumers of paid content to begin with?

The products this industry sells are not life necessities.

In summary, a branded entertainment "hunger strike" by actual existing, paid customers. This would cause real loss.
And, if it's a noticeable loss, it would send a very strong message.

Good luck.

lflux 19 hours ago 0 replies      
Looks great, but I can't set an international return address without a state. I'm a registered voter in the US, but haven't been a resident for a long time.

Guess I'll just email my rep.

alecbenzer 1 day ago 0 replies      
> Don't know who is your local representative?

I believe that should read "Don't know who your local representative is?", no?

yoshyosh 19 hours ago 0 replies      
Perhaps someone can change the facebook link at the top to a share or a recommend link. Those show up in feeds whereas likes only show up on your wall.
jjacobson 1 day ago 0 replies      
Donated, tweeted, emailed, sent the letter, etc. Cole is a baller.
MBlume 1 day ago 0 replies      
Thanks for this =)
shmeeps 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Filled out one for each of my representatives and senators, and also made a small donation. I may not be able to do much, but I'll be damned if I don't do anything.
coreyrecvlohe 1 day ago 0 replies      
Great idea, just sent letters to both of my Senators.
traldan 1 day ago 0 replies      
Not that I don't want to support you guys for doing something awesome like this, but I wish the "Like" button showed appropriate meta-content on my facebook wall, instead of just a generic description of SendWrite. Also, donated. :)
jeremyarussell 1 day ago 0 replies      
I sent mine off a bit ago, thanks a ton for doing this. Here's to making a difference.
yeison 1 day ago 0 replies      
This is awesome, but the bill will be on the House floor tomorrow.
sehugg 1 day ago 0 replies      
There's also Apple's new Cards app. I'm going through my cat pictures now.
switz 22 hours ago 0 replies      
Very great for sendwrite to do this. Not only will it protect their business, but it's a great marketing tool.
dev1n 1 day ago 0 replies      
Thank you for making this a free letter.
flexterra 1 day ago 0 replies      
nomdeplume 1 day ago 0 replies      
Is this when they slip in another bill that does something even worse? While we are inundated with the news of this bill?
sscheper 1 day ago 0 replies      
Just completed/sent a letter via your link and donated afterwords (and I rarely donate). Nice work.
A time lapse study of the sky for a year datapointed.net
49 points by thisisnotmyname  8 hours ago   9 comments top 8
bradleyland 7 hours ago 0 replies      
So not only is this incredibly cool to watch, but it illustrates how the lenght of the day and weather changes throughout the year. I could see this type of project being replicated for various biomes and used in student materials. Brilliant idea!

Also, it was nice to learn about MobyGratis.com. I've always like Moby's music, but the fact that he makes his music available like this for non-commercial use is just awesome.

apaprocki 3 hours ago 0 replies      
While watching I was thinking that this would be a much more informative graphic way to show someone what the weather was like in a particular location. I've always looked at those average temperature or precipitation graphs when deciding when to make a trip somewhere far away. If you could visualize every day of the year on a grid like this your brain would just see the "best" time to visit based on what you're looking for.
gammarator 6 hours ago 0 replies      
A compelling "small multiples" [1] view of weather. The astronomer in me wishes the sequence started with the winter solstice (Dec. 21), though!

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Small_multiple

wavephorm 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Wow it's awfully sunny in San Francisco.

A similar time-lapse video from Finland shows the difference between one day in summer to a day in winter:


Swizec 7 hours ago 0 replies      
The really cool part for me was seeing a cloudy day and then right next to it a day full of clouds being blown apart.

Also really interesting that cloudy days generally seem to be cloudy all day.

alexhaefner 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This is really neat. I got it up on a 27" iMac and let it play. So great. Thanks for sharing.
sanderson1 7 hours ago 0 replies      
It's amazing what you can learn from visualizing data in unexpected ways. I love how putting each video in a grid next to other videos teaches you so much more the day cycle than watching a single video by itself. It's pretty amazing.
guyht 6 hours ago 0 replies      
go to 1:54 top right quarter, there are some weird people shadows appearing.
       cached 17 November 2011 05:02:01 GMT