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Comment: Re:Smartcarding your SSH connection (Score 1) 148

by Average (#48758661) Attached to: Tips For Securing Your Secure Shell

Value judgement time, but for my money, nobody's out there brute-forcing RSA keys even at 1024-bit except, maybe, the NSA. If you weigh "everyone but the NSA" security as a bigger day-to-day concern, side-channel issues (keylogging, shared memory, copied private key files, implementation flaws, etc) are a lot more pressing realities than the almost-theoretical added security of 4kb+ RSA keys or going ECC.

Comment: Smartcarding your SSH connection (Score 2) 148

by Average (#48756997) Attached to: Tips For Securing Your Secure Shell

One bit of paranoia the author might add is moving your private key completely off of your desktop into a smartcard that does the RSA or ECDSA step and, being a far more limited microprocessor, should be more securable than processes running on a general-purpose networked computer and multitasking OS.

I believe there are ways to do ssh with PKCS-based smartcards, but the method used around here is based on PGP/GPG keys and either the "OpenPGP Smartcard" (ISO smartcard form factor, requires a smartcard reader) or the YubiKey Neo (USB pen-drive form factor). You create a key pair (possibly using the smartcard CPU itself). You use gpg-agent with OpenSSH (or PuTTY) support instead of ssh-agent/pageant. The private key never leaves the device (the little bit of flash memory in the chip) and is designed to be unrecoverable. The RSA authentication step happens in the microprocessor on the card. The card has a PIN and is designed to lock after a couple missed PINs.

http://www.bradfordembedded.co... for a starting point.

Comment: Re:Great feel but poor ergo ... (Score 1) 304

by Average (#48093685) Attached to: The Greatest Keyboard Ever Made

How 'ergo' you looking for?

Kinesis, who makes the Advantage series (crazy bowl shaped keyboard that I'm typing on right now and love to pieces) also makes the Freestyle (two halves), and they make the latter in a Bluetooth configuration. Amusingly, a wireless keyboard with a wire (between the two halves).


Comment: Re:Well DUH! (Score 1) 403

by Average (#48091467) Attached to: Fuel Efficiency Numbers Overstate MPG More For Cars With Small Engines

It tells you exactly why in the article. It's the way people drive them.

Doubly-so when we're talking about the vehicles in question in the article. Small displacement cars in the EU are, almost entirely, manual transmission vehicles. This means that you can precisely shift at 1500 RPM on the dynamometer test (which doesn't have any hills, traffic, or risk of death if you stall out), crawl your way up to speed, and get excellent l/100km results. This would be completely suicidal on an Autobahn or Motorway.

Comment: Re:Such practices REDUCE profit and kill companies (Score 1) 234

by Average (#47567723) Attached to: Comcast Confessions

Thanks for posting a link (your CATO one) from 1984. It's rare to get that kind of historical perspective on a site dedicated to modern technology issues.

While you were sleeping, Rip Van Winkle, exclusive local franchise agreements (the crux of that paper) were made illegal by the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

Comment: Re:I wonder when... (Score 1) 234

by Average (#47566061) Attached to: Comcast Confessions

They'd discover the same thing phone companies did in the 1990s. Direct calling your customers for an upsell is a good way to create a cancellation.

They'll discover no such thing. In the telephone wars era, you could nearly frictionlessly change your long distance provider (if not your last-mile provider, at first). Most people can't change their cable provider, because that's the only possible provider of internet (above 2Mbps anyway), so they can call you all day and you can fume all day, but one thing you won't do is cancel.

Comment: Netflix is really two companies (Score 1) 354

by Average (#47508367) Attached to: Netflix Reduces Physical-Disc Processing, Keeps Prices the Same

I agreed with the company split they tried to implement before.

For all the people who never or barely use the mail side, there are also tens of thousands of rural low-bandwidth customers. Virtually everyone I visit around my in-laws (rural South Dakota, only internet access is via cellular or satellite, either way capped at 3-5GB/month) gets red envelopes.

Comment: Re:Good since OpenID failed to take over (Score 1) 280

by Average (#47466855) Attached to: Selectively Reusing Bad Passwords Is Not a Bad Idea, Researchers Say

The thing is, I'm already having to use a password manager to keep track of my valuable passwords. With what, easily a dozen banking-ish relationships (cards, mortgage, retirement, etc) alone. That battle on complexity was lost long ago (ymmv).

Thus, if I've already resorted to a password manager for my valuable life, adding an entry to that vault for even the most trivial sites (and creating a random password) is easier than remembering a throwaway name/pass for even 30 seconds.

It's not that "you need a password manager to post to your local newspaper blog". You don't. It's that, if you're already using a password manager (and I can't imagine living without one now), using it for trivia is trivial.

Comment: It's in what you do with it. (Score 3, Interesting) 608

by Average (#47417799) Attached to: Normal Humans Effectively Excluded From Developing Software

Follow any one stack of learning, "the Ruby way" or "the Drupal way" or "the JSP way", and you can create wonderful small-scale things that, while they might get mocked by the tech-weenie chorus, serve their function and make people happy.

Every hip language/framework/DB/deployment tool/bundler/markup language/food processor is designed to make your day better. Virtually all of them actually do just that (okay, a few will piss you off, but most are not intentionally evil).

The problem is supporting a world with 65 different technologies. It is indeed superhuman to expect someone to be a Groovy/Perl/Node.js/SASS/Hadoop/Puppet/XSLT/AWS/PCI-DSS/Postgres-tweaking/network-routing/desktop-supporting "web guy". (My current job wants that and much more, and, sorry, they don't actually have it in me. I hate faking it. I fake it.)

And, yet, much of the suit-wearing world doesn't understand that, and willfully doesn't want to figure that out. In 1998, they hired "a web guy". If they got successful, they hired five "web guys". Or 20. Those business-people are still looking for "web guys". People who are extreme generalists in "the web" in 2014 are either savants or on the hardcore burnout track.

Comment: Re:selfies or it didn't happen (Score 1) 61

by Average (#47290277) Attached to: Make a Date With Fraud

"Never trust" is an exaggeration. It's not a binary.

"Never trust anyone you meet at a party" is a very weak, nearly joking, version of 'never trust' Date them, but don't immediately trust them.

"Never trust some klatch of Ghanaian scammers who you've never actually met in person so much that you send them your entire life's savings and in fact go wildly into debt sending them more money" (as is the advice my uncle got repeatedly and ignored repeatedly) is a much stronger version of 'never trust'.

- can't fix stupid
-- but stupid eventually runs out of money (and credit)

Comment: Because they compete (Score 5, Insightful) 238

by Average (#47068541) Attached to: Google Fiber: No Charge For Peering, No Fast Lanes

"So why does Netflix have to pay?"

Because Netflix competes with Comcast/TWC/AT&T's ka-ching buckets-of-money-spinning video distribution platforms. If Netflix gets popular enough, Comcast is reduced to a dumb internet pipe for $50 a month (profit of $5), not a primarily a video provider ($100+ bills, profits of $20+).

Which is the problem. If Comcast *were* an internet-tube provider (only), they'd generally be pro-peering. They might try to charge Netflix some (they like money), if the market would bear it, but mostly it's to their advantage to peer. However, most of the ISPs in the US are not pure-internet providers, so if Comcast video can use Comcast internet to hamstring Netflix, that's a natural reaction.

Comment: Rural (Score 1) 490

by Average (#46586209) Attached to: Are DVDs Inconvenient On Purpose?

Several other people have mentioned it, but there's a lot of off-decent-broadband people out there (get online via satellite or cell-stick). These rural households may only be 5-7% of the nation, but since you see red envelopes in *almost every* country house I'm ever in, it wouldn't surprise me if they make up 15-20% of Netflix's customer base.

Comment: Re:Reality (Score 2) 466

by Average (#46571065) Attached to: AT&T Exec Calls Netflix "Arrogant" For Expecting Net Neutrality

"A Federal law to make local monopoly franchises granted by government illegal would be a good start...".

Congress did that. In 1996. There is no local monopoly franchise in your local community. There is, de facto, an economic monopoly/weak duopoly. And in many cases, local governments are actively hostile to competition (because they make a lot from franchise fees from the incumbents and don't want prices to fall). But, what you're asking for? Happened. Is old enough to graduate high school this year.

Put your best foot forward. Or just call in and say you're sick.