What would that be? Iran has a semi-independent press, open elections, publishing and popular culture export and import, and industrial work outside government blacklists. North Korea is more like one giant concentration camp than a country in the usual sense. They have little in common.
North Korea is an executive dictatorship. Iran, to the extent they are a dictatorship, is a judicial one. One could argue that ancient Athens was a legislative dictatorship. Iran has more in common with classical Greece than they do with North Korea though. And you can see the influence (albeit filtered through Islamic commentaries) of Plato's Republic on the form of government.
That is not at all what the Constitution says. The Constitution allows free speech, and consequently you are allowed to say whatever you want, even if it is a lie.
However, certain statements are also acts. While the content of the statement is protected, the act itself is punished. For example, perjury, public endangerment, etc., are acts which can take the form of speech.
So perjury can obviously be made illegal, since it's a recognized exception to the freedom of speech that was well established at the time of the founding. Arguably 18 U.S.C. 1001 is a perjury statute. There is a very good argument that it goes far beyond how the framers would have understood the concept of perjury, specifically in that it applies to situations outside a judicial context in which no oath is administered. Certainly, there are people who think 18 U.S.C. 1001 in its full generality might be unconstitutional: http://www.volokh.com/2011/03/21/the-first-amendment-and-kno.... That said, when it has been applied, it has tended to be in cases that fit the mold of perjury or fraud anyway, thus punting on the Constitutional issue.
I confirm here that one day, about ten years ago, I managed to save a harddisk on which I had important data for which I had no backup (well, I had backups but I had lost/forgot the gpg key to decrypt them which in a way is even more stupid than not having backup at all: false sense of security).
You could hear the HDD "wanting" to start but failing. I searched the net like crazy because I really needed the data kinda badly: I even considered trying to find an identical, used (but working), HDD and swapping the controller.
Eventually I found a message (somewhere on Usenet I think) saying that some failing drive may start when cold enough... So I did put the HDD in the fridge. After the 2nd try I managed to boot it and to copy all my data and it's the last time that that drive booted!
So, as crazy as it sounds, the fridge/refrigerator trick was working in some cases... And I take it that the grill/heat thinggy may work in some cases too :)
I unbroke an iPod 5G by slamming it into my desk fairly hard. That was about 3 years ago and it's still working. Something about the HDD bearings seizing because of shock.
I have a Seagate HDD in the freezer for 2 years now. Every method of recovery I've used has been unsuccessful. I'm waiting to send it into a recovery service, and $1500+ that I haven't got lying around.
While doing desktop support, one of my Mac user's hard drive was failing, wouldn't spin up at boot. So you had to help spin it up. One trick was to give the HDD housing a rotation jerk the moment you turn on power. Another was to use a pencil eraser to spin the exposed spindle, also during power on.
I've talked to a few recovery experts. They told me taking the cover off destroys the drive. Apparantly the head has some tracks embedded in the cover. If it's not removed in a certain way you can rip the entire thing out.
"Do not jump into your automobile next June and rush out to the Canyon country hoping to see some of that which I have attempted to evoke in these pages. In the first place you can't see anything from a car; you've got to get out of the goddamned contraption and walk, better yet crawl, on hands and knees, over the sandstone and through the thornbush and cactus. When traces of blood begin to mark your trail you'll see something, maybe."
First, Twitter didn't pay off IBM for trolling here. They outright bought a set of patents in the hope that Twitter's own new portfolio would be enough to discourage other companies from suing Twitter in the future.
Defensive portfolios of garbage patents used to be the key to preventing competitors from suing you with their garbage patents. After the eBay v. MercExchange  case in 2006, it's not as dangerous to be sued but defensive portfolios are now much less useful also because you can't threaten to shut down aggressors' businesses with injunctions. The Apple v. Samsung and Microsoft v. Motorola cases also recently demonstrated that vague garbage patents are much more useful in court than technological patents. Juries and judges understand them better and are inclined to award hundreds of times more damages.
Second, IBM is the least awful kind of patent troll. They generally ask for small fractions of revenue or investment in companies that have established themselves. The IPO phase is a favorite time for them to ask for a few million from growing companies. The worst kind of trolls -- such as Microsoft's Intellectual Ventures -- ask for much more money from companies and often go after startups. IBM exercises restraint with the idea that they might have an ongoing relationship with companies someday in some other context.
And IBM, unlike most trolls, actually does real research. Most of the new ideas in Google Search were first published in an IBM research paper that Larry and Sergei read. IBM didn't patent those ideas, though; they mostly seem to accumulate scattershot patents at random. I think IBM's primary goal is to top the list of prolific grantees every year.
> The Apple v. Samsung and Microsoft v. Motorola cases also recently demonstrated that vague garbage patents are much more useful in court than technological patents. Juries and judges understand them better and are inclined to award hundreds of times more damages.
I don't think that I agree with this part especially if you are equating Standards Essential Patents with "technological patents" and all other patents as "vague garbage patents". If that wasn't what you meant I misunderstood.
The reason that SEP are worth less (than other valid patents) and not entitled to injunctions is because commitments were entered into by their owners to enable them to be included in the standard. And some SEPs are pretty low grade too and alternative approaches are often only prevented by the standard itself.
The reason that SEP are worth less (than other valid patents) and not entitled to injunctions
Actually, almost no patents are entitled to injunctions since the eBay decision made courts apply the same standard to patent cases as to other injunction requests, and we all owe many thanks to the Supreme Court for that.
some SEPs are pretty low grade too
Indeed, the Microsoft v. Motorola patents were particularly lousy. One Motorola patent was on the use of a particular number as a key in an error correcting code. The code itself was prior art but any two devices needed to use the some identical arbitrary key to communicate. It's embarrassing that the PTO allowed that one, but the court is making Microsoft pay for every device shipped now. Fortunately the price is small.
The Apple v. Samsung case involved a few Samsung radio channel efficiency patents that the jury found not infringed even though Apple did infringe them. They were probably as invalid as all the utility patents in the case but they failed to be useful probably because they were complicated and juries don't pay much attention to technological patents or discussions of them.
Apple's garbage patent about bounce-back was much more effective. Juries can measure that.
Now SEP (standards essential) patents are much less useful because judges are not inclined to allow them to be used defensively. And arguably valid patents are slightly more powerful than clearly erroneous ones. But simple garbage patents focused on non-technological UI and superficial means of doing business are much more effective in all litigation than actual technological patents independent of SEP status or validity.
Fair enough, I have seen plenty of comments on here assuming that SEPs are better patents than others but your view seems clearly much more nuanced. I mostly agree with your actual view and did incorrectly interpret the section I quoted.
I'm not sure the bounce back patent is inherently garbage (although it may be invalid due to prior art) but that sort of patent is entirely possible to work around. I'm not saying it is great patent but it does strike me as somewhat inventive, novel (AFAIK). I do understand what you mean about the likelihood of juries putting too much weight on what they understand.
I'm not aware of the details of the Samsung radio channel efficiency patents but I wonder why Samsung didn't bring them to (or didn't win with them) at the ITC where there isn't a jury. I'm not actually disagreeing here but it would be something ai would want to understand before completely agreeing with you about the lack of value in true technological patents (I'm in a don't know state rather than disagreement at this point).
The Obama administration vetoed ITC's Samsung-requested ban on importation of Apple phones last year. That ban depended on SEPs, so perhaps Samsung should start over with some of its other patents. Samsung seems to have unlimited money for American legal fees but little wisdom in spending it so far.
It seems quite unlikely, though, that an iconic American company like Apple will ever see an ITC action that really harms its interests sustained. It is especially unlikely to happen in favor of an Asian competitor company, given American trade politics.
Apple's ITC bans against Samsung phones don't face similar barriers so far.
In any case, since particular phone models are seldom sold for longer than two years and both district court and ITC cases take longer than that, it has almost always been obsolete phones targeted by injunctions. Until the companies get more clever about targeting broad classes of devices, that is some small relief for the industry from the insanity.
I thought the Amicus from Schultz, Love, Bessen, and Meurer was a lot better than the FSF brief. It explains the issues much better and suggests more constructive conclusions that would lead us a lot closer to outright abolition of software patents.