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Comment: A matter of priorities (Score 3, Insightful) 212

The US government has lost sight of the larger issue here. The tail (NSA and law enforcement) is wagging the dog.

The NSA and law enforcement agencies want to be able to intercept anything, since it makes their jobs easier. However, this runs counter to the larger national interest of the United States.

Which country has the highest level of connectedness and dependence on the Internet? Which country would be worst hurt if a sophisticated attacker was able to penetrate and conduct malicious actions using the systems connected to the Internet? The US, that's who. It is by far in the US's overall national interest to properly secure the Internet and communications infrastructure. Eavesdropping on everyone else is a secondary benefit, in comparison.

The proper role of the President and the Attorney General is to separate the desire of the NSA and law enforcement to make their jobs easier from the greater benefit to the country as a whole. They need to tell the ambitious underlings "NO" in unequivocal terms, then bitch slap them if they keep whining about it.

--Paul

+ - Apple May Start Accepting Android Phones As Trade-Ins

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com writes: Bloomberg reports that according to a person with knowledge of the matter, Apple plans to start accepting non-Apple devices as trade-ins as the company seeks to extend market-share gains against Android smartphones. Apple is seeking to fuel even more iPhone 6 and 6 Plus sales after selling 74.5 million units in the last three months of 2014. Thanks to record sales, shipments of iPhones surpassed Android in the US with 47.7 percent of the market compared with Android’s 47.6 percent. According to Apple CEO Tim Cook Apple "experienced the highest Android switcher rate in any of the last three launches in the three previous years." While Android phones don’t hold their value as well as iPhones, it still makes sense for Apple Stores to accept them, says Israel Ganot, former CEO of Gazelle Inc., an online mobile device trade-in company. “Apple can afford to pay more than the market value to get you to switch over," says Ganot, "on the idea that you’re going to fall in love with the iOS ecosystem and stay for a long time."

+ - Uber shut down in multiple countries following raids->

Submitted by wired_parrot
wired_parrot writes: Worldwide raids were carried out against Uber offices in Germany, France and South Korea. In Germany, the raids followed a court ruling banning Uber from operating without a license. In Paris, raids followed an investigation into deceptive practices. And in South Korea, 30 people, including Uber's CEO, were charged with running an illegal taxi service.
Link to Original Source

+ - The first stars in the Universe were invisible

Submitted by StartsWithABang
StartsWithABang writes: You'd think it would be enough to form some stars, and "let there be light" would be a reality. But these stars don't become visible for literally hundreds of millions of years until after they form. It's not that they don't emit light — they do — but rather that the Universe is opaque to that light for up to half a billion years after those stars form. While modern telescopes like Hubble are inherently limited by this fact, the James Webb Space Telescope, which will observe in wavelengths that these dusty particles ought to be transparent to, might be able to finally probe the true light from the very first stars.

Comment: Accessibility for Apple and Microsoft products (Score 1, Informative) 100

by plsuh (#49257695) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Mouse/Pointer For a Person With Poor Motor Control

You didn't say what platform, but this has been an on-going emphasis for both Apple and Microsoft for a long time.

For OS X and iOS, see

http://www.apple.com/accessibi...
http://www.apple.com/accessibi...

For Windows, see

http://www.microsoft.com/enabl...

Hope this helps.

--Paul

Comment: Life is short (Score 1) 698

Tell her this.

Do not forget you will die too one day. I am sorry I am gone, but Death is guaranteed the day we are born. It is a certainty that none of us like to think about. We like to pretend it is something in the far future that doesn't affect us. Live your life if the knowledge that you are going to die. Maybe a long time from now, but also maybe very soon. As you live your life everyday, do not forget that you will die. Perhaps it will make you more religious. Perhaps it will make you work harder. Perhaps it will make you not want to work at all. That is the point really.. you will realize your time on this Earth is limited and you will choose to spend that time wisely on the things that matter, instead of wasting it away on things that do not.

"Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart."
- Steve Jobs, Stanford 2005 Commencement address

Comment: End-to-End Audible Voting Systems (Score 1) 480

by plsuh (#48795871) Attached to: How Bitcoin Could Be Key To Online Voting

FFS, doesn't anyone do any research before posting stories? 60 seconds of research would turn up the Wikipedia entry on End-to-end audible voting systems. The problem of being able to verify that your vote is recorded as you intended without revealing the actual content of your vote has been solved by several teams. The ones that seem to have the best handle on things are Scantegrity, Pret-a-Voter, and Punchscan (the predecessor of Scantegrity) .

Using Bitcoin (which in fact has anti-anonymity properties) as an engine for voting is like attaching a tractor to a horse carriage. It may get you where you want to go, but it's nothing like a proper motor vehicle.

--Paul

Comment: Really, really weak evidence (Score 4, Informative) 158

by plsuh (#48688799) Attached to: Norse Security IDs 6, Including Ex-Employee, As Sony Hack Perpetrators

Folks,

The evidence here is really, really weak. The connection is tenuous enough and the original pool of possible suspects via their methodology is large enough that I sure as heck wouldn't rule out a connection via random chance. Until we get better evidence, this isn't worth very much.

Norse Security says as much in The Fine Article:

Stammberger was careful to note that his company's findings are hardly conclusive, and may just add wrinkles to an already wrinkled picture of what happened at Sony Pictures. He said Norse employees will be briefing the FBI on Monday about their findings.

"They're the investigators," Stammberger said. "We're going to show them our data and where it points us. As far as whether it is proof that would stand up in a court of law? That's not our job to determine, it is theirs," he said of the FBI.

--Paul

Comment: Re:The internet has no borders (Score 1) 552

by tempestdata (#48677425) Attached to: Paul Graham: Let the Other 95% of Great Programmers In

It is actually very simple.

I ran the software engineering department at a previous job. Despite my and my boss's vehement objections we outsourced our entire software development team to India to reduce costs. I was to manage them remotely.

We made it work for a while, but in the end we did it by replacing 5 US developers with an office of about 20 in India (15 of whom were developers, rest were support staff like HR, LAN admin, Office manger, etc.) and I was able to show to our CEO that the cost of the India office was about the same as our US development team with just 5 people.

We shut down the India office, and retained 4 of the best developers there, paid them US salary (high five figures to six figures USD annually) as individual free lance consultants, and had them work remotely. I required that they get paid a US salary, if they weren't worth a US salary then we might as well hire someone in the US. We then hired a few developers in the US who would also work remotely (Our company was growing and so were our software development needs). The point was to higher few good developers instead of a lot of cheap ones, regardless of location.

Years later, four of the five developers from India continue to work for that company as freelancers, earning a US wage in India. The 5th one quit to head the engineering department for a major indian website.

+ - Fedora 21 Released-> 2

Submitted by linuxscreenshot
linuxscreenshot writes: The Fedora Project is pleased to announce the release of Fedora 21, ready to run on your desktops, servers and in the cloud. Fedora 21 is a game-changer for the Fedora Project, and we think you're going to be very pleased with the results. As part of the Fedora.next initiative, Fedora 21 comes in three flavors: Cloud, Server, and Workstation. The Fedora Workstation is a new take on desktop development from the Fedora community. Our goal is to pick the best components, and integrate and polish them. This work results in a more polished and targeted system than you've previously seen from the Fedora desktop.

Here are screenshots for Fedora 21 GNOME, KDE, Xfce, LXDE, and MATE

Link to Original Source

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