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Comment: Re:file transfer (Score 1) 464

by Cassini2 (#49146749) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Old PC File Transfer Problem

Bingo. Interlnk.exe and intersvr.exe came with DOS, and as such, are often already on the old computers hard drive. (This is really important if the floppy drive is unreliable.) They can also be copied over the serial lines with a copy command, so on the other end, you can run Windows XP or DosBox under Linux.

Once the file system is under a pseudo-modern O/S, then you can use TCP/IP networking to copy it wherever you like.

Comment: Re:Understatement! (Score 1) 103

by Cassini2 (#48787185) Attached to: Canadian Government Steps In To Stop Misleading Infringement Notices

Canadian police are very polite. For a minor first infraction, they will apologize for interrupting your activities before announcing that if you do not stop then they may need to arrest you. This is known as a "caution." For a larger first infraction, they will apologize for interrupting your activities before delivering a search warrant and arresting you.

If the Canadian police show up with guns drawn, then you screwed up big-time.

Comment: Shocking ... (Score 1) 72

by Cassini2 (#48775391) Attached to: Study: 15 Per Cent of Business Cloud Users Have Been Hacked

The level of network hacking against servers and internet systems is somewhat astonishing, and not widely known outside the industry.

I did a small project where a small company wanted to monitor our equipment on a very small fleet of cars. One day, I discovered we were getting telemetry data from our cars. This created much excitement and surprise in the office, as no one was supposed to be driving any of our cars. After a bit more work, I discovered the car in question was in China. Now that was a surprise ...

Comment: Particle physics is easy ... (Score 3, Funny) 109

We only need to measure the mass of a 9.10938291 × 10^-31 kilogram particle accurate to 1 part in 10^-37. Alternatively, we can speed the electron up to 0.999c so it weighs more, then entangle it, and then measure it's mass to 1 part in 10^-37, with less than 5 sigma of measurement error.

Either way, I should have it done by lunch time.

Comment: Re:NIH (Score 1) 161

by Cassini2 (#48533669) Attached to: Why Apple, Google, and FB Have Their Own Programming Languages

The Google vs. Oracle lawsuit made a business case for not-invented-here syndrome. I think every major platform vendor will have there own programming languages in the future. Custom APIs and programming languages stops entire classes of patent/copyright lawsuits dead. It stops developers from moving between eco-systems. It even prevents your employees from stealing top-secret software and moving to a competitors. (And if they do steal the software, it becomes really obvious when law-enforcement shows up.)

I do agree from a portability/programmer perspective, NIH programming sucks. However, the legal perspective - it's great!

Also, the funny thing with lawsuits - even if you win, you still lose.

Comment: Re:Polygraph (Score 2) 580

by Cassini2 (#48119493) Attached to: FBI Says It Will Hire No One Who Lies About Illegal Downloading

False positives create selection bias. A polygraph detects people that are *nervous about there lies*. It won't detect the unaware and clueless, because they do not know they did anything wrong. Most people download songs to their iPhone, and assume it is legal. The polygraph not detect people that assume they are innocent. On the other hand, some people lie all of the time. A sociopath will pass the lie-detector test because they don't believe they are lying, and one person in 25 is a sociopath.

These problems have already been encountered in the preemployment screening industry. This is one of the less biased artlicles. To quote:

One recent study found faked answers for one quarter to one half of the applicants.[44] So how can employers who want to use personality or EQ tests in their selection process mitigate against the risk of applicant faking? Counter-measures to faking include the test and retest approach to see if an individual is consistent in their answers, or asking questions that require quick responses.[45] But counter-measures to faking may result in less reliable and valid results since some tools used to detect faking do not work well.[46]

Bluntly, if your goal is to hire people that have done no wrong, then chances are that your hires have either lied to you, or are too clueless to realize their mistakes. Either way, it is really bad for the employer, especially if the employer is the FBI.

Comment: Re:Exact mathematical value isn't the ideal (Score 1) 239

by Cassini2 (#48115349) Attached to: Where Intel Processors Fail At Math (Again)

I recall working with numerical methods from about 40 years ago, and all of the calculations that required a call to sin were range reduced to the region of +/- pi/4 anyway. The reason is that the taylor series expansions for sine and cos are most accurate in the region of zero, and for values in excess of pi/4, it is more accurate to do a transformation and implement a different call.

It is likely that the serious numerical code already handle this condition inside the internal algorithms.

Comment: Re: Friends (Score 3, Informative) 367

by Cassini2 (#48069401) Attached to: Test Version Windows 10 Includes Keylogger
Words of warning from Microsoft. Be sure to read the third one:

Remember, trying out an early build like this can be risky. That's why we recommend that you don't install the preview on your primary home or business PC. Unexpected PC crashes could damage or even delete your files, so you should back up everything.

If you want to stop using Windows Technical Preview and return to your previous version of Windows, you'll need to reinstall your previous version from the recovery or installation media that came with your PC—typically a DVD. If you don't have recovery media, you might be able to create recovery media from a recovery partition on your PC using software provided by your PC manufacturer. You'll need to do this before you upgrade. Check the support section of your PC manufacturer's website for more info.

After you install Windows Technical Preview, you won’t be able to use the recovery partition on your PC to go back to your previous version of Windows.

Watch out! Installing this version of Windows disables the recovery partition.

Comment: Re:Funny how this works ... (Score 1) 184

by Cassini2 (#47975377) Attached to: Netflix Rejects Canadian Regulator Jurisdiction Over Online Video

No. The CRTC does not have the power to block credit card transactions.

The CRTC has the authority to pull the TV station licenses, pull cable TV licenses, and in general, block or prevent any over-the-air broadcast activity. They also have the authority over any telecommunications providers in canada (over-the-wire or over-the-air.)

Netflix does not fall within any of the CRTC's typical mandates, other than the one that encourages Canadian content. However, the CRTC can only influence Canadian content via its other powers over broadcasters and cable companies.

A full list of the relevant statutes and regulations is at:

Comment: Re:Bullshit (Score 2) 358

by Cassini2 (#47944939) Attached to: U2 and Apple Collaborate On 'Non-Piratable, Interactive Format For Music'

This DRM technology is fascinating. The player automatically senses if any listening devices are present, and adjust's the output volume such that the listening devices are unable to record the music. In effect, it will play music so quietly that no one will be able to hear it or record it!

This is the latest in DRM technology, and people are going to pay million's of dollars to have it. Only Apple and U2 could pull this technology off. It is so new, it won't work with Linux, BSD, Zune, Windows, Android, and old versions of OS/X and iOS. Anyone using those older technologies will have to make do with cheap MP3 recordings of music.

DRM will work this time.

Comment: Re:Ask the US Postal Service (Score 4, Interesting) 124

Management 101: If you don't trust your employees - you are screwed. You need committed and motivated employees, and you must take actions to keep the employees committed and motivated.

CEO 101: Employee problems are management problems.

Financial Investor 101: A bad CEO can wreck the company.

The USPTO has experienced all three problems, and financial investors in lots of different tech companies have paid dearly.

What this country needs is a dime that will buy a good five-cent bagel.