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Comment: Two things (Score 1) 5

by gurps_npc (#49188397) Attached to: Facebook Rant Lands US Man In UAE Jail
1) Going to another country simply to resign is not the sanest action.

2) We really need a clear International consensu that governments do NOT have extra-territorial jurisdiction. Actions taken in one country should abide by the laws of that country, not any other country - even if it affects the other country. Any country that refuses to abide by this simple rule (I'm including my own beloved United States which routinely violates this simple legal concept.), should have punitive trade restrictions placed on them.

When I'm in New York state, I have to abide by NYS laws, not New Jerseys. Similarly, when I am in the US, I should abide by the US laws, not any other countries.

Comment: banks again ? (Score 2) 203

by Tom (#49187501) Attached to: French Nuclear Industry In Turmoil As Manufacturer Buckles

The only way you can have losses that exceed your net-worth is if someone has given you a huge amount of money that they really shouldn't. Typically, it means the banks gave these guys credit beyond even the most loose definition of sanity.

More and more I'm thinking that the fantasy worlds we live in when we play roleplaying or computer games are much closer to reality than the fantasy world of the financial industry.

Comment: Re:Do pilots still need licenses? (Score 1) 256

by IamTheRealMike (#49186799) Attached to: Would You Need a License To Drive a Self-Driving Car?

That article says the autopilot was disconnected and "[The investigation] will help us to understand whether there was a problem with the Airbus or in the training received by flight crew in manual aircraft handling at high altitude."

In other words they don't know what happened, but at the time of the near stall the plane was no longer under the control of the auto pilot. BTW if a plane suddenly finds itself overspeeding, climbing to lose speed is the right thing to do.

Comment: such stupidity (Score 1) 369

by Tom (#49186655) Attached to: Microsoft Convinced That Windows 10 Will Be Its Smartphone Breakthrough

will run on [...] phones and provide an experience very much like the desktop. [...] repeatedly failed to take the mobile space [...]"

Yeah, I wonder if these two could be in any way related...

MS is a design and UI fiasco and always has been. The only reason few people realize how unusable the crap is, is that we are so used to it that we don't notice anymore - until the next major update, or if you don't use it daily and then suddenly sit in front of it and wonder who the fuck came up with this stupidity.

And everyone who knows anything at all about mobile devices and usability knows that nobody on the planet wants a windows desktop experience on their smartphone. People want a smartphone experience on their smartphone, what's so difficult to understand about that?

Oh, speaking of that: People also don't want a mobile experience on their desktop. They want a desktop experience on their desktop, that's not so difficult, either.

Comment: Re:Do pilots still need licenses? (Score 2) 256

by IamTheRealMike (#49185845) Attached to: Would You Need a License To Drive a Self-Driving Car?

Do pilots still need licenses in the age of autopilot? Well yes because machines aren't infallible.

Not quite. It's "yes" because most people would be unable to get over their fear of flying in an entirely autonomous plane, not because we need heroic pilots to override the computer when things go wrong.

Consider that about half of all aviation accidents are traced to pilot error. The percentage of crashes caused by autopilot error is zero.

Comment: Re:Try and try again. (Score 2, Interesting) 369

I am currently an avid Android user.

I used to be an avid Windows Mobile user. WM5/6 were actually, when they existed, the MOST power-user/business-friendly mobile OSes out there. They were more geek-friendly than any of the horrifically locked-down "Linux-based" mobile OSes.

Then Microsoft dropped WP7 on the world - an OS which was unusable for nearly 100% of the core WM5/WM6 user base. At the same time, Android was coming onto the scene, which had everything that WM5/WM6's core user base wanted. MS never recovered, they utterly screwed up. NEVER alienate the majority of your core user base, even if it's trying to reach a "new" audience - especially when the "new" audience you're targeting is already drooling over a competitor (Apple).

Comment: Re:misleading headline (Score 1) 128

by Tom (#49183031) Attached to: Schneier: Either Everyone Is Cyber-secure Or No One Is

Those two missions aren't mutually exclusive. Defend yourself at home and go on offense abroad.

It works for bombs and tanks, but not for computer networks and communications. It might have even worked in the time of telegraphs and snail mail letters. But for encryption, it doesn't work. A cipher is either weak, or strong. You can compromise a foreign postal system without affecting the security of your own, but you can't secretly build a backdoor into an encryption algorithm that works only for you.

Simply asserting that something is mutually contradictory because it sounds good to use words like 'cognitive dissonance' isn't any kind of argument.

Now you're trying to reverse the chain of causality just to make a cute finishing sentence. :-)

Comment: Re: Yeah.... (Score 1) 103

Forget the lot. Look at the cars. An empty lot at dinner time is a sign a table is waiting, but you don't want it. A full lot and a line at the door is a sign of a happening place, but expect a wait. Best to try a late afternoon brunch instead. Go where the locals go. Many bring their car. Judging the lot by the lot itself is like judging a book by it's cover. Content is more important.

Comment: misleading headline (Score 5, Insightful) 128

by Tom (#49178995) Attached to: Schneier: Either Everyone Is Cyber-secure Or No One Is

What's with the clickbait headlines? By itself, the headline is total BS. The actual statement made, however, is spot on. The hole in your security doesn't care who exploits it. There's no "good guy" flag in IP headers (though I'm sure some April 1st RFC will soon introduce it).

What worries me most is that we could win this fight, if it weren't for our own governments deciding to betray us. There are vastly more people interested in secure communication and other people not being able to spy on or subvert our computers and mobile devices than there are people interested in compromised communications and systems (basically only criminals and some deluded, criminal-if-the-laws-were-right elements of governments).

There is just one problem to Bruce's argument: The largest and most powerful spy agency in the world disagrees with his fundamental assumption. We often forget that the NSA has two missions, and they are exactly the two things that Bruce argues cannot co-exist: To secure the computing infrastructure of the US against foreign espionage, and to provide espionage on foreign communication.
The NSA believes, and/or is tasked with exactly these two things that Bruce says (and I agree) are mutually exclusive. No surprise they've gone rogue, their very mission statement is a recipe for a mental breakdown through cognitive dissonance.

Comment: depends ? (Score 1) 241

by Tom (#49178645) Attached to: Study: Refactoring Doesn't Improve Code Quality

Doesn't it depend a lot on what you refactor, when and how?

I have 3 year old code that I would like to refactor because I've since switched framework (from CodeIgniter to Symfony 2) and it would bring it in line with all my other projects, allowing me more easy code-reuse and not maintaining two frameworks both on servers and in my mind. But it's largely a convenience factor and I would agree that it will probably not improve code quality very much.

But I also have 12+ year old code written in plain PHP with my own simple database abstraction layer. I'm quite certain that refactoring that would do a world of good.

Breadth-first search is the bulldozer of science. -- Randy Goebel