Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:Nitche Market (Score 1) 433

by AnotherBlackHat (#48593911) Attached to: Vinyl Record Pressing Plants Struggle To Keep Up With Demand

The loudness wars started long before CDs.
It's prevalence has more to do with how music is produced than with the format it's recorded on - i.e. it's easier today to over compress something than it used to be.
If vinyl was still successful, there would be just as many over compressed piece of shit vinyl records as there are over compressed piece of shit CDs.

Comment: Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? (Score 1) 205

by AnotherBlackHat (#48552143) Attached to: The Failed Economics of Our Software Commons

When money is involved, the question that comes to mind is "who should be in charge?"
There's a surprisingly consistent answer to this question.
I hear it a lot, from a lot of different people and that answer is "I should".

Snowdrift describes a way to raise funds.
It might even be more effective at raising funds.
But I see nothing that promotes spending those funds wisely.

Comment: Re:next gen batteries (Score 1) 293

If you're going to compare that way, you need to factor the relative efficiencies of the two fuels -
electricity can be converted into kilometers about 3.5 times as effectively as petrol can.

Rule of thumb; Electric cars get 5 km to the kWh
500 kW watts for 10 minutes = 83 kWh = 400 km = 250 miles

But really, who cares which is faster, which do you think about first when deciding what car to buy;
Fuel economy, price, style, carrying capacity, cost of maintenance, or speed of fill up?

Charging doesn't have to be fast, it just needs to be fast enough.

For most people, electric cars can be charged at home overnight.
It may be a longer overall time, but it's a lot less of my time (a few seconds to plug in vs. a few minutes to fill up).
For long drives, a diner/charging station would work fine. Thirty minutes to eat and charge.

Comment: Taxis - The Self Driving Car of Today (Score 1) 454

by AnotherBlackHat (#48444281) Attached to: In a Self-Driving Future, We May Not Even Want To Own Cars

We have a "self driving" car technology, it's called a "taxi", and millions of people use them and avoid buying a car already.
Most of us avoid these due to a thing I like to call "being rich enough not to have to put up with that shit".

I own a car because I don't want to share.
That's not going to change if the car can drive itself.

Comment: Re:Yes it is a peering problem ... (Score 1) 243

Settlement free peering between tier 1 carriers only happens when the flow of traffic is roughly balanced between the contracting peers.

When one peer is pushing a lot more traffic onto the other network, then that usually goes out the window and the pusher is required to pay the receiving network.

So you're saying if Netflix downloaded more data from Comcast than they sent, that Comcast should pay them?

I have no problem uploading an amount equal to what I download from Netflix, or even more, if you really think that will solve the problem. I don't really control the software on my Roku box, but I don't mind if Netflix puts some P2P software on it for help carrying their own traffic.

Comment: Two Rules (Score 1) 279

I've found two rules to be very helpful when dealing with this sort of problem;

1. Don't buy it until you need it.
        Electronics in general are going to be cheaper, faster, and smaller in the future, so put off all buying of stuff as long as it's reasonable to do so.

2. When you need it, buy it without hesitation.
        If the current best solution is X, then pay for X and don't worry about it. Yes, there's a better way, and yes, there's going to be an even better way in the future, and yes X is going to suck in 10 years. But there's no way to avoid that so don't sweat it.

You have Google fiber. You have a 600Mbps solution to connect to that fiber. Do you need more than that, right now?
If not then apply rule 1, and do nothing. If so, then apply rule 2 and wire your house with Cat6 (or pay someone else to do it.)

Comment: Re:Time for some crapflooding. (Score 1) 150

by AnotherBlackHat (#48087043) Attached to: Adobe Spies On Users' eBook Libraries

Injection attacks or other unsanitized data.
Material that you (or Disney) hold the copyright to.
Anything illegal to export/import (nuclear secrets, cryptography)
Sensitive personal information of important people.
Any information Homeland has forbidden you from discussing.
Even just the simple volume of the material could be a problem. (Of course the list of my ebooks is 24 terabytes, why how big is yours?)

The list of things they can get into trouble just having a copy of is almost endless.

Comment: Time for some crapflooding. (Score 4, Interesting) 150

by AnotherBlackHat (#48085409) Attached to: Adobe Spies On Users' eBook Libraries

If Digital Editions, or any other program, is sending meta-data about the contents of hard drives, then they deserve to what they get.

I picture a small program that creates millions of pseudo-random file names ending with .epub, .pdf, or whatever else D.E. is scanning for.
I'd certainly be willing to dedicate a few gig to the task, I'm sure there are several thousand others who feel the same.

Comment: Re:Drop solar heat for direct conversion (Score 4, Informative) 521

by AnotherBlackHat (#47712191) Attached to: Solar Plant Sets Birds On Fire As They Fly Overhead

Except you can not exceed the solar power that hits the surface of the planet from the sun.

There are actual, serious, plans to put solar in orbit. Solar isn't limited to the surface of the planet.

But let's ignore that power-in-sky thinking for a moment.
The amount of sunlight that hits the Earth is an astronomical 150,000,000,000,000,000 Watts.
That's around 1000 times man's total energy usage.

To put it in per capita terms;
At noon, 1 square meter on the surface receives about 1 kilowatt of energy.
The average over a day is 4 kilowatt hours per square meter.
A typical home is 100 square meters, and uses 24 kilowatt hours a day.
At 12% efficiency, you only need to cover half the roof with photovoltaics to supply 100% of that homes electric needs.

Comment: Re:us other engineers matter, too (Score 4, Insightful) 371

Valuing people by their number of direct or indirect reports makes a lot of sense. If I am one of a group of ten people and I'm 20% more productive than the others, my extra contribution only adds about 2% to the total. If I am a good manager my staff might be 5% more productive than an average manager's.

If you're good you should be in charge of more people, but being in charge of more people doesn't make you good.
Or to put it another way, just because a position is important doesn't mean the person in the position is.

Comment: Damned if you do. (Score 1) 560

"We know you did it, so until you confess, we're going to hold you in contempt of court."

The court is claiming that they really, truly, pinky swear know he did it, because they heard him say so, so that whole "can't force you to testify against yourself" thing doesn't apply.

I don't believe the spirit of the 5th is that it doesn't apply when we know you're guilty.

From Sharp minds come... pointed heads. -- Bryan Sparrowhawk