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 Linux Zealot and Economics 101

 Author:  Topic:  Posted:
Apr 16, 2002
 Comments:
Another outing for our hero, the enthusiastic defender of the Free Internet, Linux Zealot. This time, he's taking the battle to The Man and doing something to keep the Web free for the rest of us. Go, LZ!

[Editor's note, by jsm] The computer graphics cognoscenti will notice a subtle difference in the artwork this week. Instead of using commercial software, we've produced this episode of Linux Zealot using the free alternative, a program known as The GIMP. You might notice that the lettering is a little fuzzy, but what do you expect for nothing? Anyone who has the programming savvy to improve the GIMP is welcome to channel their ideas for making the fonts look better through the Adequacy.org comment boards.

zealot

More stories about Linux Zealot
Linux Zealot - The Internet's most controversial cartoon superhero
Linux Zealot is Busted
Linux Zealot learns a valuable lesson.
Linux Zealot sticks to his guns.
Linux Zealot in the Future
Linux Zealot goes to the Movies
Linux Zealot Gets Educated
Linux Zealot attempts to get laid.
Linux Zealot (almost) Makes a Friend
Linux Zealot needs a job
Linux Zealot Gets Laid
Linux Zealot contributes to the Open Source Community
Linux Zealot Takes a Bath
Linux Zealot vs the RIAA.

More stories by
jsm

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LNUX = FC?
Linux Linux Linux -- Part One -- Trying to Be a Hero
A Declaration of Independence for the Indebted States of America
Kill Yr Idols: Nelson Mandela
Open Letter to a Stripper
Milosevic Goes Free, Thanks to Godwin's Law!
Tax the Childless, Double Votes for Parents
Luv Yr Enemies -- Jesus Christ
Open Letter to the USA: Please Don't Drown Me
The Real Darwin Awards
Harnessing the Computational Power of Autism
'English Style Lovers', with jsm
Why the Bombings Mean That We Must Support My Politics
Kill Yr Idols - Donald Knuth
Linux Linux Linux Part Two - Crossing the Linux Fault Threshold
Teaching Astrology In Schools
Chip Hell -- the AMD story
We Licke Icke
Slashdot Subscriptions and VA Software -- what's going on?
Wicca and the Insult to Religion
A New Kind of Feminist Science
Linux Zealot

Linux Zealot

Linux Zealot

Linux Zealot

Linux Zealot



       
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I am very impressed. (none / 0) (#4)
by because it isnt on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 10:20:52 AM PST
I have always enjoyed the aesthetically pleasing, professionally drawn Linuz Xealot series, but using The GIMP has brought the cartoon to a photorealistic high.

With regard to your font trouble; it appears that most of the trouble is due to using a high JPEG compression level. You should instead save the images in the GIF format.

Furthermore, you may be using piss-poor freefonts or sharefonts. To rectify this, download Microsoft's free web-fonts. I realise that Microsoft is terrible and evil and all that, but the fonts are free. You can then use the fabulous thievery tool cabextract on your Linux b0x3n to extract the fonts, which you can then install.
adequacy.org -- because it isn't

Microsoft fonts on Linux ? (none / 0) (#5)
by dmg on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 11:07:25 AM PST
Surely this is against all kinds of EULAs and GPLs etc.

I bet RMS does not use Microsoft fonts.

time to give a Newtonian demonstration - of a bullet, its mass and its acceleration.
-- MC Hawking

Microsoft fonts on Linux (none / 0) (#12)
by GhostDog on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 12:00:54 PM PST
That's a good point you bring up. It's illegal to use Microsoft's fonts on any OS other than Windows. It's really not a good idea to be using these fonts on Linux.
Certainly it is widely known that RMS does not use Microsoft fonts, although not for legal reasons. He ordinarily has no qualms about breaking the law, and has engaged in a number of un-American activities such as conspiring to outlaw commercial software.


Why not? (none / 0) (#18)
by The Mad Scientist on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 12:41:39 PM PST
. It's illegal to use Microsoft's fonts on any OS other than Windows.

Why? And even if, is there anyone except lawyers who really cares?

It's really not a good idea to be using these fonts on Linux.

As long as it works, why not?


is there a HOWTO for making it work? (5.00 / 1) (#20)
by venalcolony on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 01:18:48 PM PST
As long as it works, why not?

\documentclass(adequacypost)
\usepackage(itslinuxnotlunixdamnit)

\setlength{\parskip}{3pt plus 2pt}
\setlength{\marginparsep}{0.75cm}
\setlength{\marginparwidth}{2.5cm}
\setlength{\textwidth}{150mm}

\begin(comment)
I installed them earlier today and my bash prompt looks an \emph(awful lot) like it did yesterday.
\end(comment)

\section(footnote)
\footnotesize(Not that I care too much. Lusers spend too much time futzing with fonts instead of concentrating on the actual content LOL.)
\section(footnote)


---
The difference between trolling and life is life doesnt have to make sense.

Try this: (1.00 / 1) (#22)
by The Mad Scientist on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 01:39:43 PM PST
Truetype HOWTO. It's a first-glance search, I hadn't tried to mess with X and fonts and fontservers much, I feel better on the console.

Lusers spend too much time futzing with fonts instead of concentrating on the actual content

Definitely. And all the focus on WYSIWYG doesn't help here too. :(


 
Bullet-ridden feet. (none / 0) (#37)
by because it isnt on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 06:48:13 AM PST
It's illegal to use Microsoft's fonts on any OS other than Windows.

Learn to read, Skippy.
adequacy.org -- because it isn't

Am I supposed... (none / 0) (#38)
by The Mad Scientist on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 07:42:17 AM PST
...to take it seriously?

a) In the whole document there is one mention that the fonts are intended for Windoze and Macs. Not a single specific statement that it isn't intended for anything else. So it is a fair game.

b) Even if you'd be right, am I supposed to respect the will of a Megacorporation? Do they respect my will when I want to correct a bug, or to remove an incompatiBILLity?

c) I refuse to recognize legal status of corporations as persons. I am willing to negotiate about what a physical person tells me in its own name. I reserve the right to ignore a de facto nonexistant entity. They usurp too much of power anyway. They (especially MS) lie and cheat every time it is suitable for them. They stretch the laws to fit them, and then they buy new ones. And I am supposed to respect the laws that are designed to protect them? Is it fair? Is it even logical?


Oh brother: (5.00 / 1) (#39)
by because it isnt on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 08:27:00 AM PST
Mad Scientist: blah blah waffle drone
[Isn't waves his hand]
Isn't: You are not arguing with me.
Mad S: I am not arguing with you.
Isn't: You feel an inner peace.
Mad S: I feel an inner peace.
Isn't: You will not argue with anyone today.
Mad S: I will not argue with anyone today.
Isn't: Be seeing you!
adequacy.org -- because it isn't

Exactly! (nt) (none / 0) (#40)
by The Mad Scientist on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 08:45:34 AM PST



 
Against all humanity. (5.00 / 1) (#36)
by because it isnt on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 06:42:16 AM PST
Surely this is against all kinds of EULAs and GPLs etc.

Well, it might be, but it's not morally wrong. Microsoft want you to have the best web experience, even if you don't use Microsoft Windows™. And that's just peachy.

I bet RMS does not use Microsoft fonts.

Yes, well, RMS doesn't use showers. That doesn't make showers inherently evil.
adequacy.org -- because it isn't

 
Ya think? (5.00 / 1) (#32)
by Anonymous Reader on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 12:57:28 AM PST
Mercy, I thought the fuzzy text was because XFree86 can't anti-alias for ass or money.


GIMP and fonts (none / 0) (#75)
by Anonymous Reader on Wed Apr 24th, 2002 at 08:28:44 AM PST
GIMP does its own font rendering and doesn't use XF86's font renderer.


Technical details - normal people pls ignore thx. (none / 0) (#76)
by dmg on Wed Apr 24th, 2002 at 12:55:13 PM PST
In fact XFree86 V4.0 onwards can do anti-aliased truetype fonts, it's just that you have to get them from 'the man' i.e. Microsoft. You also have to explicitly enable them by editing the /fucked/if/I/can/be/bothered/to/do/this/shit/Xf86ConFig file, and adding the lines:
Modules
lib "do something it should do anyway"
lib "Why the fuck do they make everything so complicated"

So, as I said, normal people probably will not bother and will probably choose an OS that works out of the box. I.E. Windows XP.

time to give a Newtonian demonstration - of a bullet, its mass and its acceleration.
-- MC Hawking

 
I Don't Get It (1.25 / 4) (#6)
by nexzus on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 11:16:27 AM PST
All you people seem to be against free software, or claim that it's inferior, and yet this site runs on Apache, FreeBSD, MySQL and uses the the SlashCode all free software.

Kettle, meet pot. Pot, kettle.


No you don't (none / 0) (#7)
by gNinja on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 11:28:57 AM PST
>>yet this site runs on Apache, FreeBSD, MySQL and uses the the SlashCode all free software.

And no, it doesn't.


So... (1.00 / 2) (#10)
by nexzus on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 11:46:46 AM PST
The fact the Netcraft reports that this site runs Apache on FreeBSD means that the admins somehow wanted to send out Apache headers from another webserver and OS? Or the admins wrote scripts that have the same functionality as SlashCode, including ratings, "Anonymous Coward", etc Give me a break.


Slashcode? (5.00 / 2) (#11)
by nx01 on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 11:59:26 AM PST
Or the admins wrote scripts that have the same functionality as SlashCode, including ratings, "Anonymous Coward", etc

You idiot.

I imagine you think that K5 also runs Slashcode? Or that PHP-Nuke is actually Squishcode?

Adequacy runs a proprietary branch of the Scoop engine. It's not free software. It's Adequacy.


"Every time I look at the X window system, it's so fucking stupid; and part of me feels responsible for the worst parts of it."
-- James Gosling

 
Please cease and desist your social engineering! (5.00 / 1) (#13)
by Adam Rightmann on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 12:01:07 PM PST
Being a published authority on software and security, I am wise to your attempts tohax0r this site. Right now you are attempting to social engineer the server administrators, by gaining valuable information about adequacy's underlying inferstructure. We are wise to your clumsy attempts, and will niether confirm or deny just what Windows operating system Adequacy runs on, and just what BBS'ing software we use.

You may consider our attitude as security through obfuscatity,but it's really jsut one layer in a multi-layered security process.


A. Rightmann

Here we go (none / 0) (#58)
by Anonymous Reader on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 05:09:24 PM PST
just what BBS'ing software we use

I'm not one to call people names, but you're a moron, a liar, or both. At the bottom of every Adequacy page, to the right of the "News For Grown-ups." logo and the Search box, there's a little graphic that says, in no uncertain terms, "powered by Scoop".


what Windows operating system Adequacy runs on

More bullshit. Adequacy runs on "Apache/1.3.22 (Unix)". Since you're convinced that Netcraft is a lying hax0r t00l, I'll do it myself.
Click Start -> Run.

Type in 'telnet www.adequacy.org 80' (without 's).

When the window opens, click the Terminal menu and `Start Logging`. Save the file somewhere.

Again, Terminal menu, and go to Preferences .... Turn on 'Local Echo'.

Now, in the main window, type
GET / HTTP/1.1
Host: www.adequacy.org

and then close the connection after you get the HTML (if it's not closed automagically).

Open up the file in Notepad or whatever, and look at the server's response, between what you typed and the <HTML> tag.

Server: Apache/1.3.22 (Unix)
Strange, isn't it?


Your lack of education is showing (none / 0) (#64)
by Adam Rightmann on Fri Apr 19th, 2002 at 10:44:50 AM PST
perhaps if you get to university, you can ask a computer science professor about the Turing hypothesis. Just because some BBS software was developed on Lunix, doesn't mean it has to stay on Lunix.


A. Rightmann

True.... (none / 0) (#65)
by budlite on Fri Apr 19th, 2002 at 12:26:53 PM PST
...but the word "unix" in that server string is a dead giveaway...

Unless it's running on the abortive Xenix, which would explain why this site is that much less responsive than Kuro5hin.


hey! (5.00 / 2) (#69)
by Anonymous Reader on Sat Apr 20th, 2002 at 11:05:17 PM PST
If you were to telnet to my mail server, it would greet you with "Spamorama v0.1alpha. One spoon or two."

Guess what? There is no Spamorama. The above sequence of characters between quotes is called a string. You can compile all sorts of strings into software. Neat, huh?

Face it, the only thing you know about Adequacy's s/w is what Adequacy's fine team of programmers decide that s/w will tell you. What if the Adequacy admins are amused by l33t hax0rs trying scoop and apache exploits on their proprietary software? It could happen.


Too right (none / 0) (#70)
by walwyn on Sun Apr 21st, 2002 at 01:53:58 PM PST
My web browser will occasionally identify itself as IE3.


oh ghod (5.00 / 1) (#71)
by tkatchev on Sun Apr 21st, 2002 at 02:14:43 PM PST
Don't tell me you're using the awful aborted "Opera" browser?


--
Peace and much love...




Wrong try again! (nt) (none / 0) (#72)
by walwyn on Sun Apr 21st, 2002 at 04:05:18 PM PST



 
Scathing irony. (none / 0) (#74)
by Anonymous Reader on Tue Apr 23rd, 2002 at 08:35:22 AM PST
You can compile all sorts of strings into software. Neat, huh?

Last I checked, you couldn't compile anything into Windows or IIS, which Adequacy claims it's using. Looks like you just trapped yourself in your own logic.


Ever heard of... (none / 0) (#77)
by Uncanny Vortex on Wed Apr 24th, 2002 at 02:55:55 PM PST
...a hex editor? Or is your knowledge of software more limited than I ever imagined?

Perhaps the term "compiling" wasn't appropriate with regards to IIS, however we are merely splitting hairs at this point.

-- Uncanny Vortex



 
bunk (none / 0) (#27)
by Yoshi on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 04:57:27 PM PST
The NetScape NetCraft Information Database has been proven wildly inaccurate in the past, even as far as to say that some popular sites were hosted by the NetScape Enterprise web browser.

Thus, I propose an amendment to Godwin's Law.

Invoking the flawed, biased NetScape NetCraft "argument" in any thread or discussion immediately loses the argument.

I'm sorry it had to come to this, but let's be real - I didn't see a George W. Bush polling organization before election day, did I? Then why do I see fanboys proporting their own 'non-biases' for the Lunix crew?


Idiot... (none / 0) (#31)
by DG on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 10:49:29 PM PST
Yoshi.. some sites use the netscape server, stop acting like everyone uses IIS, some sites feel like it's a good web server,not everyone likes a web server that can get hosed by a vb worm

btw the "amendment" would only work with you becuse people go to links and view whats there and don't claim it's fake even though they have no proof,
2002, DG. You may not reproduce this material, in whole or in part, without written permission of the owner.

 
err? (none / 0) (#34)
by detikon on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 01:33:31 AM PST
The NetScape NetCraft Information Database has been proven wildly inaccurate in the past, even as far as to say that some popular sites were hosted by the NetScape Enterprise web browser.

Just a few things:

1. The Netscape Information Database? What does Netcraft have to do with Netscape or AOL Time Warner.
2. If Netcraft reports that a site is using Netscape Enterprise then it is. Please stop confusing Netscape Enterprise (web server) with Netscape Navigator (browser). Remember, Netscape is the name of the company too.
3. Please provide proof of where sites were mis-labeled. And by the way please also provide PROOF of what they do run.

Let's get this over with.

Yoshi's response:

I don haf to proof nothin. I are smart and you al is stupid. I don care if hole big world tink I are retard. Evan books for dummies are rong. U is stoopid lunix haker comunis dummee. I only trus Microsoft cuz Bill Gates is presudant and stuff. He are real smart.




Go away or I will replace you with a very small shell script.

Sometimes when I feel passionate about a topic, (5.00 / 3) (#35)
by JoePain on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 05:51:31 AM PST
I don't post, lest a Troll should see that passion and make a point to use it for their savage personal entertainment.


It's pointless (5.00 / 2) (#48)
by Anonymous Reader on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 09:04:55 PM PST
You're too subtle. Like Rhesus monkeys, detikon, DG and company will never see themselves in the mirror you're holding up to them. They'll see another, strange Rhesus and fling shit at it.


 
Illiterate bastard (none / 0) (#46)
by Anonymous Reader on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 07:49:33 PM PST
Does the graphic at the bottom of the screen saying "Powered by Scoop" not show up on your screen, or are you a fucking moron? This works a little different than slashcode, but I'm probably wasting time by trying to explain this to a neanderthal such as yourself.


Twit. (none / 0) (#59)
by Anonymous Reader on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 09:04:33 PM PST
And I quote
"If you do not see an applet below, get the best IRC client around, connect to irc.slashnet.org and join channel #adequacy."

This is on (In)Adequacy's own site. And you can bet Slashdot does not run its IRC server on a MS product.
Just because you don't wont it to be true doesn't mean it isn't, face facts, IIS cannot cope with anything more demanding then 2 grannies access the website, and it requires gigabytes of RAM to do even that. It is bloatware, monopolistic and crap.

So less of the "Illiterate bastard" you twit. I am honestly surprised that a Cro-magnum ape like yourself can spell Illiterate (bet you used the spell checker!), so thats one up for evolution and the ability of chimps to learn.


Cro-Magnum P.I. (none / 0) (#60)
by T Reginald Gibbons on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 10:20:15 PM PST
Paleolithic crimefighter, solving mysteries, righting wrongs with nothing but his stone age tools of justice!


He's a Cro-magnum P.I., she's a motormouth lawyer- (none / 0) (#63)
by derek3000 on Fri Apr 19th, 2002 at 07:34:48 AM PST
They fight crime!


----------------
"Feel me when I bring it!" --Gay Jamie

 
Ads... (none / 0) (#8)
by The Mad Scientist on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 11:29:42 AM PST
...in their current form are a kind of industrial waste.

They blink. They stick out of the page like the most important thing. They eat screen space (ok with me as long as not in frame). They are eyesore.

Would I bother with filtering off the ads if they would fit the page's color scheme, load fast, not dance, and let me focus my mind to the thing I came for - the page's text?

Junkbuster misses couple important functions; check its successor, Internet Enforcer. One, it would be better if the blocked images would be replaced with a transparent gif (or, as I coded, a dark-gray area - doesn't attract eyes in both light and dark page settings), but their FAQ says they are scared of the lawyer scums. This version also adds URL-specific redirects, or serving a specified local file instead of the remote one. Specifying a different-than-default proxy for specific URLs is possible as well. You can even specify a whole custom HTTP request header. Many more functions, mostly undocumented.

Make the ads small, preferably text-only, make them visually pleasant instead of annoying, convince me you aren't putting me into a behavior-tracking database, and I will consent to look at them. Deal?

The problem isn't Web-specific. I am currently playing with video recording on disk (those VHS tapes are bulky and take too long to seek, and why to bother with them when we have DivX). A logical next step is some software that will detect commercials in the resulting file, and mark their offsets for a third utility, which will then remove them from the file. I have two (maybe more) possible algorithms to use. I then plan to release the code, if only to see the reactions.


While I am no fan of mass media (none / 0) (#9)
by Adam Rightmann on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 11:39:12 AM PST
and it's effects on brainwashing people into becoming sex-obsessed materialistic liberalists, this invention of yours seems like stealing. Television watching has always been based on a mutually understood and respected protocol, you watch the show and the commercials, while the advertisers pay for the show. Is there room in your divx invention to send money to the networks for the shows you watch, and the commercials you miss?

Of course, the better response is to not watch TV, and spend your free time with your family, and ministering to the masses.


A. Rightmann

No that cant be right (none / 0) (#14)
by PotatoError on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 12:11:11 PM PST
While I agree with your arguments against TV, turning a blind eye to ads is most definitely not stealing. I entered no such agreement with any TV company to have to watch their ads - neither do I feel it is my duty.
Walking away from the screen during ads to get a coffee cant be considered stealing can it?

I have the choice whether to watch ads on TV and I choose not to..although right now I cant do much about it.
Mad Scientist has a good idea - one which i've dreamed about before, not only for videos but for actual live TV..once TV sets become digital enough it will be possible to detect and blank out advertisements. Whether or not the TV companies can survive this is irrelevant. Company business strategies sometimes have to change at the whim of the public.
Noone wants TV advertising just as noone wants internet advertising. The only difference is that you can do something about internet ads but on TV the ads are forced upon you. If Mad Scientist wishes to change this then good for him. Innovation is a good thing and in this case it gives the public more choice. If you think that TV will cease to be without advertising then let me tell you - if the current TV companies collapse because of it there will always be people who want to take on the job and can beat the tight financial line. Maybe it will be goodbye to million dollar industry but maybe this is the way to deliver long needed good TV shows too..not the rubbish we get nowadays...afterall without a desire for "ratings" there comes a desire for "standards".
<<JUMP! POGO POGO POGO BOUNCE! POGO POGO POGO>>

What on Earth are you suggesting ? (none / 0) (#16)
by dmg on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 12:18:22 PM PST
That we go down the route of the UK, where it is illegal to watch TV without a license ? Did you know that if you don't take a TV watching exam over there you are not allowed to watch TV ? LOL

I've been to the UK, and I have seen the output of 'Socialist' TV true enough it has no ads, but on the other hand, it is also shit.

Without the 'invisible hand' of the market to keep it in line, the British Broadcasting Corporation or BBC makes programs which are dull, and worthy, and always seem to be trying to educate the masses, or talk down to them.

Let's face it, hardly anyone watches the publically funded UK TV anyway, preferring the diet of Premier League soccer, soft porn and American imports that they can get on BskyB.

time to give a Newtonian demonstration - of a bullet, its mass and its acceleration.
-- MC Hawking

The friendly hand of the market. (none / 0) (#21)
by Anonymous Reader on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 01:26:46 PM PST
The invisible hand of the market gave us "Survivor", a damned fine piece of cultural artistry.


 
Heh (none / 0) (#28)
by PotatoError on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 06:17:04 PM PST
When did you last come to the UK dmg?

You'll be happy to know that since you visited, programs on the BBC are now just trivial gameshows and soaps. They gave up on the worthy and "educate the masses" thing last decade...think they thought it was patronising or something lol.

In fact its illegal to OWN a TV here without a license. Ridiculous when two other channels manage on advertising and are better IMO. By being state funded (which is really what it is) its supposed to produce "quality" programs seeing as it doesnt need ratings like commercial TV. But all we get nowadays is like I said, rubbish. You simply can't distinguish BBC shows from commerical ones anymore.

Anyhow these days people might only want a TV to watch cable or saterlite but they still have to pay the BBC. Still the BBC have close ties to the government so I dont expect any reforms in the immediate future. Im also pissed off because my computer has a TV out card and yet I cant buy a TV to use it with or I have to shell out for the license.

At Uni everyone I know with a TV has no licence - its illegal but the license costs the eqv of about $150 a year. Students dont do that sort of spending lol. Did you know they even have "ads" on the BBC which show bad stuff happening to people who dont pay their license like fines and shit? They bawk on about their "detector" vans which can strangely detect from the street whether you are using a TV or not...in fact its a lie turned myth - all they do is harass anyone who hasnt bought a licence since they assume that everyone has a TV. Its a joke. I would tell you more but I can feel government agents closing in on me.


<<JUMP! POGO POGO POGO BOUNCE! POGO POGO POGO>>

Don't buy a TV. (none / 0) (#29)
by The Mad Scientist on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 07:06:53 PM PST
You'll be happy to know that since you visited, programs on the BBC are now just trivial gameshows and soaps.

You mean the Discovery Channel is gone???

Im also pissed off because my computer has a TV out card and yet I cant buy a TV to use it with or I have to shell out for the license.

Either don't buy a TV, sell the card, and get a dual-head card and a second monitor, or get a secondhand TV in a pawn shop. I don't suppose a shopkeeper of a small shop will ask you for documents. If so, just turn around and find another one. I am pondering to get rid of my TV and put a fourth monitor on its place.

With a TV receiver card and a dual-monitor setup, you get better image (with strong enough CPU and good deinterlacing/filtering software), digital VCR, with certain software a timeshift (so you can stop the signal and leave for a coffee, then later fastforward up to the current moment when there are ads) and even if they'd use their TV vans they won't "see" you, as the monitor operates on different frequencies than TV - I don't suppose they have sensitive-enough receivers for the parasite tuner emissions, I think they rather go after the horizontal synchro signal and its harmonics. With hightech-enough atypical setup you can talk your way out of mostly anything, supposing you don't lose your cool and start looking scared.

Anyway, the TV goons can't enter your premises without search warrant. Unless you let them in when they ask you. Many housewives don't know this, so they end with a fine or in a jail.


my mate down the pub... (none / 0) (#51)
by bungatron on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 06:51:37 AM PST
told me that all you have to do is cut the power cable on the TV. This way, it's not classified as a *reception device* as it can't recieve! they can search as much as they like then!

he was eating pork scratchings.


 
oops! please turn yourself in! (none / 0) (#50)
by bungatron on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 06:45:24 AM PST
A commonly misunderstood part of the TV license is what it's actually for; most people consider it a mechanism by which they are permitted to repeat parrot-like lines from sketch shows ad nauseum.

it's actually required for ownership of reception equipment; if you only have a video recorder, you need it. if you have a TV with no ariel, you still need it. And rather unfortunately, if your video card can display a TV picture, you need it too... you cheapskate H4X0Rs don't get away with it, just because you didn't think they'd ever anticipate ATI.

Why not move to a tower block and argue that someone else in the block has bought one, so you're covered for a site license? or just go back to university halls and watch channel 5!

any other insights that bloke down the pub gave you?


nearly (none / 0) (#52)
by because it isnt on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 07:23:46 AM PST
it's actually required for ownership of reception equipment

It's actually required for ownership and use of reception equipment. If there are any TV-manufacturing factories left in the UK, they don't need a TV license. I was told this at school back in 1987 by a man who came to tell schoolkids about TV licenses, which is pretty evil if you think about it.
adequacy.org -- because it isn't

re: nearly (none / 0) (#53)
by iat on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 10:12:15 AM PST
I was told this at school back in 1987 by a man who came to tell schoolkids about TV licenses, which is pretty evil if you think about it.

You must have attended a state school. Dirty commoner.


Adequacy.org - love it or leave it.

Can you believe the hypocrisy, readers? (5.00 / 1) (#54)
by because it isnt on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 10:55:22 AM PST
A man from Geordie-town is telling me that I'm a dirty commoner? Who tha fook does he think he is? Here is a man who can never have attended a private school, as privately schooled kids are fuckin' poshee baastads. As for dirty, well at least I'm not covered in toxic soot.

PS: If ya gaan doon the toon willya fetchus some broon, pet? Wye aye Byker Grove, like.
adequacy.org -- because it isn't

 
Actually, you don't need a license... (none / 0) (#55)
by gordonjcp on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 10:58:31 AM PST
just as long as the TV's not connected to an aerial.


 
Analog vs digital TVs (none / 0) (#17)
by The Mad Scientist on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 12:35:33 PM PST
once TV sets become digital enough it will be possible to detect and blank out advertisements

It should be possible to detect-and-erradicate even with analog TVs. With digital TVs there will be added problems with various content-protection flags. These will have to be cracked away to make the technology obedient and reliable.

The difference between offline and online ad removing is the random access to data stream. With saved file, you can take in account ie. the size of ad slot, and watch for dark frames or sharp image changes that occur in given intervals. You also have more time to ie. match frames to known ad graphics. When you have to deal with real time signal, you don't have the advantage of having access to these variables. With enough of disk space, though, you can make your own TV station just for you, completely from recorded data. You can record one program while watching another from the record, as long as disk space and CPU speed suffices. (Both are cheap today.) With enough CPU speed and a pair of capture cards, you could even record two programs at once. Together with downloading program guides from the Net and pattern matching of the entries, you could get the machine even to automatically record anything with a given title/genre/actor. The possibilities are endless and the required state machine is quite simple.


Yea (none / 0) (#30)
by PotatoError on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 07:08:58 PM PST
When I said digital I was thinking more of the TV set being programmable like a computer. Digital is obviously the wrong word for this...my bad.

I was mainly thinking along the lines of your idea. The problem is that the viewer wants to see the whole show from start to finish uninterupted and yet somehow we have to remove adverts.
Time is our enemy here but we can get around the problem by using a buffer. By recording slightly ahead of the viewer we can detect ads, delete them and continue recording before the viewer catches up. Of course the viewer eventually would catch up with the recording - the buffer would shrink with each ad break and if the buffer reaches zero then =failure=.

There are two methods of dealing with this I can think of (other than changing the speed of the stream which we cant do):

First method:
I reckon a 30 min show has at worse about 20 mins program and 10 mins ads so we would need over a 10 minute buffer meaning the viewer has to start recording the show when it starts but not start watching until 10 mins into the show (to make up the buffer). Therefore the viewer will be only watching the show for 20 minutes - a real time saver. The only downside is having to turn on the recorder in advance, then walk off and remember to come back in 10 mins...most people would say whats the point. Also If its a 3 hour movie with 30 mins of ads you will have to start watching 30 mins after the movie actually starts...even though you will finish watching it when everyone else does. Still it saves 30mins of your life.

The other method is if you cant speed up the stream in then slow down the stream out. Have the TV record a show in real time but display it to the viewer fractionally slower than real time. This would allow a buffer to be built up over time. If done right then by the time the first ad break comes on we would have worked up enough buffer to deal with it. Then the buffer would empty and start building up again when the ads ended. The viewer would know nothing - no adverts at all.
The gem here is that the time saved by deleting the ads actual means the show is just as long as it says in the TV guide but you don't have to see any of the ads - great for ad haters like me. The fact that it plays slightly slower could be considered good or bad but would probably be unnoticable anyway (many movies are speeded up slightly in cinemas so they can fit more in..or maybe its on videos..cant remember). Anyway its like turning the ad time into extra viewing time really.
The slowness fraction would be finetuned so that the buffer worked up to just the right size to cope with each ad break. That would be optimum.
If only I had a computer-TV hybrid I could play with. But of course even if I did have one id need a license lol.




<<JUMP! POGO POGO POGO BOUNCE! POGO POGO POGO>>

 
Mutually understood and respected protocol (none / 0) (#15)
by The Mad Scientist on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 12:16:25 PM PST
Advertisement is a brainwashing tool. No more you are presented real parameters of the new-improved-whatever; you are fed with emotional images depicting the whatever as a wonder that will fulfill the desires of any given target group.

By getting rid of the ads from the dedicated commercial break you don't get rid of everything anyway; there are paid product placements inside of the movies and shows as well. Each time you see a brand on screen, with some its design attributes prominently placed, it is paid. If you see a movie where most of the things shown are remarkably generic, you can be fairly sure they hadn't happened to find a sponsor.

So by filtering off machine-recognizable commercials from movies you only save yourself the hassle of pressing fastforward. I thought zapping through the ads or leaving the TV set to take a piss or to get new tea is part of what you call "mutually understood and respected protocol". I just want to add one more variable to the protocol, and offload parts of it to a machine. And to gain some "leet skillz" related to video editing and codecs in the process, and possibly making some money from them later.

If I will manage to detect ad breaks in realtime with reasonable accuracy, I will wire it to the TV to automatically mute the channel. I noticed they are changing the volume up a bit during the commercial breaks, probably to attract attention. Something should be done with that. It's annoying.


 
Who is that man in Panel 4? (none / 0) (#19)
by mfk on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 12:52:08 PM PST
The mop of sprayed-on black hair bears no resemblance to any Adequacy editor or user that I know. Whoever he is, he appears to be in charge of Adequacy, otherwise he would have no authority to tell the rest of the staff Adequacy went under (which is an event I pray will never happen)

So, jsm, care to elaborate?


 
so why then ... (none / 0) (#23)
by Anonymous Reader on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 02:26:59 PM PST
so please tell me why, if this site doesn't run on apache why the admins would change the headers to make it look like it does, and how they would do this if they had the closed source IIS


Computers can do a lot of kewl things. (none / 0) (#24)
by Uncanny Vortex on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 02:40:05 PM PST
IIS may be "closed sauce", but it allows one to add custom ISAPI filters which could easily be used to output spoofed HTTP headers. (I'm not necessarily saying that they did this, but it is certainly a technological possibility.)

Do some reading already.

-- Uncanny Vortex


 
Power! (none / 0) (#25)
by Anonymous Reader on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 03:42:02 PM PST
So I can, single handedly, bankrupt a company! Even one which is all knowing, all seeing and omnipotent as Adequacy SO obviously is

Now is that power on my behalf, or pathetically poor business planning on the behalf of the company?

Or perhaps said company spent tens of thousands of dollars to much on MS bloatware when slim fast secure Linux\Unix alternatives are available and was going to go bust anyway.


oh no (none / 0) (#26)
by detikon on Tue Apr 16th, 2002 at 04:11:27 PM PST
I don't really understand why using any ad blocking software would kill any web site. Simply pick up the latest issue of PC World. In it various advertising companies explain that they are not worried. The number of people using the software is small. There are ways to combat even ad blocking software and some site block user running it.

I would also like to know why the recent comic depicts Adequacy.org as his favorite website or why ad blocking software would kill it. Adequacy.org is surely not my favorite site. It certainly isn't the funniest. The only thing funnier I have found is Computer Stupidities at www.rinkworks.com

As for the ad for hypermints, ad blocking software would have no effect on it. Why? It's nothing more than a simply linked image. It just sits there acting like a banner ad. In truth it's a great way for adequacy.org to calim to be a commercial site (we have ads!) when it's really just another picture. No revenue from that thing. I mean unless the webmaster and someone at adequacy.org have a contract that forces the webmaster of hypermints to visit this site to see if the ad is there, which is rather silly when you think about it.




Go away or I will replace you with a very small shell script.

I'm sorry Detikon (5.00 / 1) (#33)
by Hansard on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 01:04:56 AM PST
I would also like to know why the recent comic depicts Adequacy.org as his favorite website. . . Adequacy.org is surely not my favorite site.

Everything is not about you.


 
yea (none / 0) (#41)
by PotatoError on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 08:54:40 AM PST
You don't need a license to buy a TV - only to show them if they see one in your house (I think one of their main tactics is to look thru windows lol).

Visit this wonderful site. Yea its the official TV Licence site.

I strongly recommend the "Detection and Penalties" section. It's such a joke.

"Every TV contains a component called the 'local oscillator', which emits a signal when the television is switched on. It's this signal that the external aerials on our vans pick up."

Is this possible/true?
<<JUMP! POGO POGO POGO BOUNCE! POGO POGO POGO>>

In future, reply in the correct thread! (none / 0) (#42)
by iat on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 09:23:11 AM PST
As for the matter of whether or not TV detector vans work by detecting the local oscillator, yes it's possible and probably true.


Adequacy.org - love it or leave it.

 
The cat detector van from the Ministry of Housinge (none / 0) (#43)
by because it isnt on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 09:35:00 AM PST
Every TV contains a component called the 'local oscillator', which emits a signal when the television is switched on. It's this signal that the external aerials on our vans pick up."

Is this possible/true?


Both. Have a look at this thread. They don't use this to scan and sweep, as you can defeat their spy kits simply by turning your TV off.

Instead, they correllate the addresses of anyone who buys a TV, video recorder, or DVD player, with those people who have TV licenses.

In case you've never bought a TV in the UK before, remember to pay with cash and give them a completely made-up address. In a few months time, Mr Michael Mouse of 1 Main Street, London SW1 2AA will be recieving a threatening letter from Crapita.

Oh, and one more thing -- TV detector men have no legal authority. If they knock on your door and ask to come in and see if you've got a TV, tell them to piss off.
adequacy.org -- because it isn't

 
RF emissions (5.00 / 3) (#44)
by The Mad Scientist on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 10:10:06 AM PST
"Every TV contains a component called the 'local oscillator', which emits a signal when the television is switched on. It's this signal that the external aerials on our vans pick up."
Is this possible/true?


The TV contains several oscillators.

The most important one is the one in the tuner. Oscillates on the frequency of the carrier of the TV channel that the set is tuned in.

Associated to this one is the subcarrier oscillator, which separates the signal components from the signal acquired from the tuner. This one is set to fixed frequency (in Europe, typically 5.5 or 6.5 MHz[1]) that varies with the norm (PAL, SECAM, NTSC).

In color TVs, there is also the oscillator that generates reference frequency for separation of hue and saturation components of color signal (which are modulated as another subcarrier, this time on the brightness signal - the brightness signal is the same between norms, while the color and audio subcarriers vary, which explains why you can get black/white image from PAL channel on a SECAM TV and vice versa). The encoding used is that one variable (saturation?) is encoded as amplitude of the color carrier, while the other variable (hue?) is the phase shift of the color carrier against the reference oscillator (which explains why earlier cheaper color TVs often operated in "false colors", due to poor stability of the reference oscillator). The reference oscillator is put in phase by the means of the "color burst", placed in TV signal just after each horizontal synchronization pulse.[2]

Then there is the horizontal/vertical synchronization pair. These are operating on fixed frequency (15625 and 50 Hz for PAL/SECAM, ???[3] and 60 Hz for NTSC[4]), and are synchronized by vertical and horizontal synchronization impulses carried in the videosignal.

In modern (read: all but the most obsolete) TV sets there are also the oscillators providing clocks for various microcontrollers inside the TV and the remote.

In modern TVs there are also switched power supplies. These contain another oscillator; they work by rectifying the AC power, converting it to DC (so the diodes and large capacitors rated for 400V), chopping it to about 10 kHz (frequency varies type to type) (so the transistors on the heatsinks), and feeding it to a ferite core transformer (which is much smaller and cheaper and with less turns of wires than an equivalent "low-frequency" transformer), to be rectified on the output side again.

Every oscillator leaks some emissions. Their frequencies and sometimes phases are more or less characteristical; the frequency and amplitude character of the switching power supply oscillator could suggest the type of the TV (or a device in general). The tuner oscillator emissions reveal the channel tuned to. The subcarrier oscillators emissions reveal the norm of the channel tuned to (which has only an academical meaning, as this is an info that is easier to get by other means). The minute differences in emissions from the clock oscillators reveal the activity of the TV's microcontroller - very weak to intercept. The strongest signals emitted are from the deflection coils; their frequency is fixed and characteristical, their phase can indirectly suggest the channel tuned to. The electron guns give out a noise as well, directly related to the brightness of the individual RGB channels; this together with the synchronizations is important for TEMPEST analysis of PCs, if you are into an espionage; though maybe analysis of optical emissions could be easier in amateur conditions. Another source of emissions, both electromagnetical and optical (IR band) is the remote control.

Electromagnetic emissions can tell *awful* lot about you. There is a reason why some more repressive regimes often issue laws limiting non-governmental people and organizations' access to sensitive radio frequency technology operating outside of "officially sanctioned" "consumer" bands, and why TEMPEST-certified devices are for sale only for licenced subjects. Personally I would feel more comfortable if the technology would be on the streets (which would create a large-scale need for defense technologies, that would then appear on the streets as well). If I will get some free time, I will play with the technology a bit, and possibly leak the schematics to the Net; but until then I will have to get some time and equipment, and detailed high-frequency knowledge that I so painfully miss...

[1] Disclaimer: Pulling it from memory, not exactly sure about the value.

[2] Some TV "encoding" schemes just drop the synchronizations, and reconstruct them in the decoder from a signal carried typically in other channel. If you will use the color burst to reconstruct the synchronizations (nothing more than a couple of filters, window discriminators, and PLL oscillators), you can watch those channels without having to pay for the decoder.

[3] Screw the trivia.

[4] Because the power grids are interconnected, it is critical that the AC voltage has the same phase all over the power grid, otherwise stray currents and huge losses and eventually wire meltdowns result. This was used in the beginnings of the TV, to derive the vertical synchronization signals from. This explains why the vsync frequencies match the frequencies of power grid of their respective areas (USA/Japan, Europe).


I've heard just about enough from out of you... (none / 0) (#57)
by Illiterate Bum on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 12:41:55 PM PST
Mad Scientist! Enough of your techno-babbling! I have learned more useless knowledge from you within the past month than I have spending an entire four years in that liberalist bastion known as UC Berkeley! Do I, or just about any of the other intelligent and sexy patrons of Adequacy, care about your acronyms or ions or P/N junctions or your kernel and glibc upgrades? No! Of course not! Don't be silly! For the love of God, write some goddamned poetry or an inane rant or, better yet, do nothing but snidely criticize others' posts, grammar, and spelling!

Honestly, if I wanted to learn something, I'd be somewhere else.
-----

"...normal, balanced people do not waste time posting to weblogs." --tkatchev

It was kinda cool (none / 0) (#73)
by Anonymous Reader on Sun Apr 21st, 2002 at 10:46:14 PM PST
Hey, I learned something and I dont mind.



 
Yes,and yes - two experiments to try... (none / 0) (#56)
by gordonjcp on Thu Apr 18th, 2002 at 11:07:24 AM PST
First, if you've got a TV and a video, switch them both on. Get a spare channel on the TV (one that's not tuned to anything else) and tune up and down until you find the channel that the video recorder is on (usually 36). Tune up some more, until around channel 50-odd you'll see a some "herring-bone" interference. This is the signal from the "local oscillator" in the video recorder, and it's what TV detectors look for.
So, how do they find out where you are? Foxhunting.
Get a portable radio, that tunes the AM band. Switch your TV on. You'll notice that at certain parts of the radio dial, you'll hear a loud buzzing - this is the "scan oscillator" in the TV (this works with computer monitors too). If you stand far enough away, you'll find that if you hold the radio end-on to the tv, the buzzing is quieter - the aerial's less sensitive at the ends. If you find the angle that the radio is quietest, from two points far enough apart (the other end of the garden ought to do it), you can triangulate the position of the TV set in the house.


 
Costume change? (none / 0) (#45)
by Ernest Bludger on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 07:08:18 PM PST
What's on LZ's shirt in frame 2? Looks like "Troublemints" but my eyes are crap (and it's fuzzy text). Are "troublemints" a particularly strong hypermint - as in, "The mint you take when you're in real trouble..."?

LZ appears to have changed into the more familiar Limp Biscuit tee in the remaining frames.


Troublemints is a satanic band out of Cleveland (none / 0) (#47)
by Adam Rightmann on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 08:29:01 PM PST
or Toledo, or some such city in Ohio. Avoid them or endanger your soul.


A. Rightmann

Ohio (none / 0) (#49)
by Ernest Bludger on Wed Apr 17th, 2002 at 09:47:43 PM PST
Why is it that Ohio produces so much evil music?

Fortunately, the 'equal and opposite reaction' can be found. Here is an Ohio band we can all enjoy. The have seen the true light, and are fighting the true fight. [They even have a Mission Statement.]


 
Is Linux Zealot using Microsoft Internet Explorer? (none / 0) (#61)
by PotatoError on Fri Apr 19th, 2002 at 03:25:46 AM PST
Or are my eyes decieving me?
<<JUMP! POGO POGO POGO BOUNCE! POGO POGO POGO>>

Why Linux sucks still. (none / 0) (#62)
by MessiahWWKD on Fri Apr 19th, 2002 at 03:47:11 AM PST
Or are my eyes decieving me?


Of course. As anybody knowledgeable with Linux knows, one cannot access the Internet from Linux. Linux apologists blame it on patents and believe that the Internet is bloatware.
Guardian angel, heavenly friend, walk with me 'til the journey's end.

Unfortunately... (none / 0) (#66)
by budlite on Fri Apr 19th, 2002 at 12:37:19 PM PST
...he's right. AOL is bloatware. 40-odd megabytes simply for internet connection software? Resource usage is through the roof, and I've been experiencing a lot more crashes with the client installed.<P>

I might also direct you at <A HREF="http://www.pengaol.org/eng">this</A> site.


 
of course (none / 0) (#67)
by PotatoError on Fri Apr 19th, 2002 at 03:04:37 PM PST
But you understand that if you use Internet Explorer you are actually NOT looking at the Internet? You are looking at AOL's Intranet which is a much smaller entity than what Linux machines can access.
<<JUMP! POGO POGO POGO BOUNCE! POGO POGO POGO>>

I think... (5.00 / 2) (#68)
by tkatchev on Sat Apr 20th, 2002 at 12:08:08 AM PST
...I'll pass on the "anime porn" and the "lenix haxing" sites.


--
Peace and much love...




 

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