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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:Insurance (Score 2) 88

Kickstarter is an investment platform

That is one thing that it absolutely is NOT. It's a donation platform, and some people asking for donations offer some incentives in exchange for your generosity. That's it. There is no investment. People who've given money are not vested in any way, except perhaps emotionally.

Comment: Re:I don't think Obama is really paying attention (Score 1) 462

He just demonstrates to Muslims that even a non-Muslim can tell ISIS isn't Muslim

More than a quarter of British Muslims recently polled said they support militant Islamists who attack westerners they consider out of line with jihaddi sensibilities. That's 27% who applaud the slaughter of magazine publishers by ISIS-associated Muslim fanboys/girls. Those people think that ISIS is very Muslim, and is in fact a better example of practicing Islam than the more "moderate" groups who don't practice or support such violence. What is it, exactly, that you think Obama is demonstrating to those millions of people who simply laugh at his assessment of the Muslim-ness of one group or the next?

bombs don't differentiate whether someone is Muslim or not

With whom are you having that debate? Bombs aren't supposed to make distinctions between innocent people and medieval-minded wackadoos following the Koran's guidance and lopping heads off of the local insufficiently-Islmaic villagers. It's human intel, targeting, and decisions that make that distinction.

totally misunderstand the meaning of the words others say

No, you're just annoyed that someone actually paid attention to the words someone said.

Comment: Re:Viewing Launches (Score 1) 22

by Bruce Perens (#49166815) Attached to: SpaceX Falcon 9 Launches Dual Satellite Mission

With luck, they'll start incorporating our radio transceivers. I hear that SpaceX flies with several USRPs now, so that's not completely unrealistic. That might be as close as I can get. Anyone who can get me a base invitation, though, would be greatly appreciated and I'd be happy to do some entertaining speeches while there. I need a base invite for Vandenberg, too. I got in to the official viewing site for the first try of the last launch (and that scrubbed too), but this next one is on Pad 6.

Comment: Viewing Launches (Score 3, Interesting) 22

by Bruce Perens (#49164783) Attached to: SpaceX Falcon 9 Launches Dual Satellite Mission

I was in Florida to speak at Orlando Hamcation and went to see the DISCOVR launch at Kennedy Space Center. I paid $50 to be at LC-39 for the launch, an observation tower made from a disused gantry on the Nasa Causeway between the pads and the Vehicle Assembly Building. A crawler was parked next door! A hot sandwich buffet, chips, and sodas were served. It was cold and windy! I watched for a few hours and unfortunately the launch scrubbed due to high stratospheric winds.

The next day, Delaware North Corporation, which operates tourism at KSC, decided not to open LC-39 or the Saturn 5 center for the launch. This was the third launch attempt and I guess they decided most people had left. I was annoyed.

The closest beach was going to be closed in the evening, it's a sensitive ecological area. I ended up seeing the launch from Jetty Park. This turned out not to be such a great location, the tower wasn't visible at all and the first 10 seconds of the rocket in flight were obscured before we saw it over a hill.

What's a better viewing location?

Comment: Re:I don't think Obama is really paying attention (Score 1) 462

So, here you are, twisting and turning, trying to avoid the actual commented-on issue, which asserts that Obama has the power to "take away" Islamist street cred, or bestow it. Limit your comments to whether that's actually true, or not. Which Muslim, in which country, is going to be thinking one moment that ISIS adherents are strictly faithful Muslims fighting the good fight against evil things like women who want to read and write, and then based on something Obama says, change their mind and decide that position (and thus ISIS) is no longer actually Islamic? What kind of person do you think holds ISIS as being defender of the faith but who also holds Obama as someone they should listen to as an authority on what is, or is not, authentically Muslim? Can you point to a single person, anywhere, who holds both positions?

Comment: Re:Dear ISIS: (Score 2) 462

You've just made them even happier with their choices. You fundamentally misunderstand what makes them tick. They want you to hate them. They're banking on it. They need you to hate them, and they're willing to do things like roast people alive in order to make you hate them even more.

Comment: Re:I don't think Obama is really paying attention (Score 1, Interesting) 462

Or he is smarter and more strategic than you are. By refusing to acknowledge ISIS as 'real' Islam he takes away ISIS primary claim to legitimacy and hands that legitimacy to the moderate Muslims (ie Jordan) that will join in the fight against ISIS.

Do you really think that an organization of many thousands of people which slaughters other Muslims for being insufficiently Muslim will give a rat's ass whether or not a politician in the US considers them to be sufficiently Muslim? Obama can no more "take away" their embrace of fundamental Islam than he can turned to by millions of other Muslims as an authority on whether they are legitimately following the Koran. What nonsense, to even suggest such a thing.

People like the Jordanians will demonstrate their "legitimacy" through their own actions, not through having the president of the United States proclaiming their particular adherence to their own cherry-picked passages in the Koran as being the "right" one. Would you consider Obama to be also a strategic genius for weighing in on which groups in Israel or Brooklyn or Poland are legitimately Jewish? Please.

Comment: Hashes not useful (Score 5, Informative) 309

by IamTheRealMike (#49157781) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Does One Verify Hard Drive Firmware?

Seagate is correct. Putting a hash on the website doesn't improve security at all because anyone who can change the download can also change the web page containing the hash.

  The fact that this practice is widespread in the Linux world originates from the usage of insecure FTP mirrors run by volunteer admins. There it's possible for a mirror to get hacked independently of the origin web page. A company like Seagate doesn't rely on volunteers at universities to distribute their binaries so the technique is pointless.

A tool to verify the firmware is poetically impossible to write. What code on the drive would provide the firmware in response to a tool query? Oh right ..... the firmware itself. To make it work you need an unflashable boot loader that acts as a root of trust and was designed to do this from the start. But such a thing is basically pointless unless you're trying to detect firmware reflashing malware and that's something that only cropped up as a threat very recently. So I doubt any hard disk has it.

BTW call a spade a spade. Equation Group == NSA TAO

Comment: Re:Perception (Score 1) 408

by ScentCone (#49156915) Attached to: Is That Dress White and Gold Or Blue and Black?
He's not talking about the ACTUAL dress, he's talking about the photographic portrayal of a dress is the crappily exposed and presented JPG that everyone is looking at. The dress, as recorded in the JPG, is a barely-blue-tinted light grey, and the black elements have a demonstrably uneven RGB that makes them look gold (because that data represents a color low on blue ... which is to say, it's a golden hue).

Comment: Re: Great, fully owned by Silent Circle (Score 4, Interesting) 59

The issue with Silent Circle isn't their jurisdiction. It's that their code is of deeply questionable quality. They recently had a remote code execution exploit that could be triggered just by sending a text message to their phone. It's been literally years since one of these affected mainstream software stacks, so how was that possible?

Well, they wrote their own SMS parsing code, in C, and used JSON to wrap binary encrypted messages and there was a bug that could cause memory corruption when the JSON wasn't exactly in the form they expected.

The amount of fail in that sentence is just amazing. They're a company which justifies its entire existence with security, writing software to run on a smartphone where the OS itself is written in a memory safe language (Java) and yet they are parsing overly complex data structures off the wire ..... in C. That isn't just taking risks, that's playing Russian roulette over and over again. And eventually it killed them. Remote code execution via SMS - ye gods.

After learning about that exploit and more to the point, why it occurred, I will strongly recommend against using Silent Circle for anything. Nobody serious about security should be handling potentially malicious data structures in C, especially not when the rest of the text messaging app is written in Java. That's just crazy.

Comment: Re:Well someone has to do it (Score 1) 347

by jdavidb (#49144329) Attached to: The Programmers Who Want To Get Rid of Software Estimates

Business can't plan or talk to customers or have any strategy whatsoever without at least some estimate...that's just the real world. If devs don't give estimates, managers have to make estimates. If managers don't make estimates, business makes estimates. You want devs to do the estimating.

I just don't want the boss to be disrespectful to me when the estimate is not accurate. Get us some estimation training or something. Don't give me a lecture. I'm too old for lectures.

Comment: Re:GNUradio? (Score 1) 131

Test equipment is allowed to transmit and receive on those frequencies. If it looks like a radio, it can't. I have a number of cellular testers hanging around here that can act like base stations, mostly because I buy them used as spectrum analyzers and never use the (obsolete) cellular facilities. Government has different rules regarding what it can and can't do in the name of law enforcement, although FCC has been very reluctant to allow them to use cellular jammers.

If you can afford it, something from Ettus would better suit your application.

Backed up the system lately?