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Comment: Re:Considering how few boys graduate at ALL (Score 1) 190

Whatever the reason for girls being pushed away from doing the things they want to do, we can help fix it. In fact we were doing pretty well back in the 80s and 90s, but then something went wrong and the numbers have dropped off quite sharply.

Part of it is a backlash from people complaining about sexism when they see people trying to help girls, but there are many other reasons and as you say most of them are nothing to do with geek culture itself. That doesn't change anything though, we have still have an opportunity to deal with it, as well as all the other problems with society.


Sony Hack Reveals MPAA's Big '$80 Million' Settlement With Hotfile Was a Lie 66

Posted by timothy
from the 4-80-whattsa-difference? dept.
An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Tech Dirt: For years, we've pointed out that the giant 'settlements' that the MPAA likes to announce with companies it declares illegal are little more than Hollywood-style fabrications. Cases are closed with big press releases throwing around huge settlement numbers, knowing full well that the sites in question don't have anywhere near that kind of money available. At the end of 2013, it got two of these, with IsoHunt agreeing to 'pay' $110 million and Hotfile agreeing to 'pay' $80 million. In both cases, we noted that there was no chance that those sums would ever get paid. And now, thanks to the Sony hack, we at least know the details of the Hotfile settlement. TorrentFreak has been combing through the emails and found that the Hotfile settlement was really just for $4 million, and the $80 million was just a bogus number agreed to for the sake of a press release that the MPAA could use to intimidate others.

Comment: Re:Anyone can intercept SSH some of the time (Score 1) 188

by AmiMoJo (#48686043) Attached to: Snowden Documents Show How Well NSA Codebreakers Can Pry

This attack looks like something else though, judging by the numbers they are attacking. I speculate:

- They have fake certificates from trusted authorities for some major sites, and use MITM attacks to serve up fake pages with them. We know that GCHQ loves doing the latter, so it's a question of working out which certificate authorities have been compromised and deleting them. We can also potentially defend against this by using more certificate pinning and warnings which certificates change unexpectedly, as well as distributed certificate checks (to make sure the one you get is the same one everyone else gets).

- They capture a lot of encrypted data but don't decrypt all of it. They store the data and crack it later if it seems interesting. Much of the cracking probably relies on flaws in the implementation of the encryption - small RSA keys, bad PRNGs (we know that the NSA compromised at least a few of them) and the like. They seem to have massive amounts of computing power available too, which is hardly surprising given what we know of their budget and data centres (really supercomputing centres dedicated to violated your privacy and various laws).

Comment: Re:What the fuck is this pretentious bullshit? (Score 1) 177

by AmiMoJo (#48685265) Attached to: Know Your Type: Five Mechanical Keyboards Compared

Vinyl is better as it is compressed differently

Actually that happens to be exactly correct.

Vinyl records can't be quite as "loud" as CDs, because of the physical limitations of the movement stylus and the durability of the vinyl itself. Basically you can compress (in the sonic sense, making the music sound louder) music on CDs a lot more than you can on vinyl, so the vinyl release of an album can sometimes sound much better than the CD simply because it isn't over-compressed.

A few years later they release the "remastered" version, which is just the vinyl mix on CD, and it sounds great.

Comment: Re:why Facebook? (Score 1) 207

by AmiMoJo (#48685207) Attached to: Facebook Apologizes For 'Year In Review' Photos

While I don't have a FB account, I understand why some people do. My friends used to communicate with text messages, and I was always in the loop. Then it all moved to Facebook, and fortunately they remember to invite me to things now but in the early days they either forgot or remembered right at the last moment.

I can see many people being basically obliged to be on FB just to keep up with their social circles. From there it's easy to get sucked in, and people start tagging you on photos etc. It sucks and demonstrates why we need to EU Right to be Forgotten as soon as possible, so we can purge ourselves from social media if they start to misbehave.

Comment: Re:Tried red, black, brown still not happy. (Score 1) 177

by AmiMoJo (#48685051) Attached to: Know Your Type: Five Mechanical Keyboards Compared

I had a similar experience to you. Mechanical keyboards feel nice, but laptop style scissor switch keys are faster and more accurate. I ended up with a Microsoft wireless model. Many of their keyboards have a "compact" layout that sucks, but they do a few that have proper spacing. They tend to have F-lock keys as well, which are not ideal, but they are hard to beat for feel and quality.

The other obvious choice is a Lenovo Thinkpad style keyboard. Their wireless models are insanely expensive though. These days I prefer wireless because it's just so handy to be able to throw the keyboard to one side when I need some desk space.


First Airbus A350 XWB Delivered, Will Start Service in January 63

Posted by timothy
from the every-inch-of-seat-matters dept.
jones_supa writes The wait is finally over for aviation aficionados wanting to book a flight aboard the Airbus A350 XWB. Qatar Airways, the global launch customer of the plane, accepted delivery of their first A350 of 80 in order, during a ceremony at Airbus' headquarters in Toulouse, France, on Monday morning. This particular A350-900 will enter regular commercial service in January, operating daily flights between its Hamad International Airport hub in Doha, Qatar and Frankfurt, Germany. There are three different iterations of A350 XWB being built: the A350-800, the A350-900 and the A350-1000, which seat 270, 314 and 350 passengers, respectively, in three-class seating. The "XWB" in the name means "extra wide body." The A350 is the first Airbus with both fuselage and wing structures made primarily of carbon-fiber-reinforced polymer. Curious what it was like to be on the Tuesday delivery flight? Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren was onboard that flight and chronicled the landmark trip in photographs.

Comment: Re:Dem haxxorz dey be haxxin. (Score 2) 162

by AmiMoJo (#48672707) Attached to: North Korean Defector Spills Details On the Country's Elite Hacking Force

Well, someone did DDOS their entire country offline, taking down their official news outlets etc, so apparently they do need some kind of cyber security force.

In fact they do have an internal network, used by universities and companies, and a 3G mobile network. There is something to defend.

Imagination is more important than knowledge. -- Albert Einstein