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Comment: Re:At least he included warrants (Score 5, Insightful) 238 238

Ha ha, did you think he meant warrants? No, no, no... just like every other effort to chip away at freedom and privacy, it comes dressed in the noblest of promises. But once the necessary powers are secured, the promises can be gradually (if not immediately) infringed upon.

Comment: Re:Bad Summary, Only new part is the sharing optio (Score 1) 470 470

The point is that with Windows 10 this will happen automatically without them knowing it.

So when I invite a Win10 user and give him/her the password, that password may be shared to anybody that Win10 user is connected to - without that Win10 user knowing or realizing it.

And of course a lot of people use the same password for their WIFI as for other stuff, so Win10 seems to be a quite nice password sniffer.

That is the problem. People screaming passwords from mountaintops isn't.

Comment: Re: No (Score 4, Insightful) 470 470

How often do your friends immediately email the Wi-Fi password you just gave them to their entire contact list? The correct answer (unless you have really shitty friends) is never. Now all of your friends will do this by default, unless they are technically literate enough to disable the option. (And even if your friends are literate enough, your roommate/boyfriend/girlfriend/spouse's friends won't be.) It's very aggravating that Microsoft has chosen to so promiscuously share the secrets its users have entrusted to the OS. A Wi-Fi password that might have previously been shared with a handful of friends is now automatically spread to a network of hundreds, and exposed to possible interception by enterprise, underground, and state-sponsored hackers. One really has to question the legality of this feature, unless the wording is very clear and the user opts-in every time.

+ - XKEYSCORE: NSA'S Google for the World's Private Communications->

Advocatus Diaboli writes: "The NSA’s ability to piggyback off of private companies’ tracking of their own users is a vital instrument that allows the agency to trace the data it collects to individual users. It makes no difference if visitors switch to public Wi-Fi networks or connect to VPNs to change their IP addresses: the tracking cookie will follow them around as long as they are using the same web browser and fail to clear their cookies. Apps that run on tablets and smartphones also use analytics services that uniquely track users. Almost every time a user sees an advertisement (in an app or in a web browser), the ad network is tracking users in the same way. A secret GCHQ and CSE program called BADASS, which is similar to XKEYSCORE but with a much narrower scope, mines as much valuable information from leaky smartphone apps as possible, including unique tracking identifiers that app developers use to track their own users."


"Other information gained via XKEYSCORE facilitates the remote exploitation of target computers. By extracting browser fingerprint and operating system versions from Internet traffic, the system allows analysts to quickly assess the exploitability of a target. Brossard, the security researcher, said that “NSA has built an impressively complete set of automated hacking tools for their analysts to use.” Given the breadth of information collected by XKEYSCORE, accessing and exploiting a target’s online activity is a matter of a few mouse clicks. Brossard explains: “The amount of work an analyst has to perform to actually break into remote computers over the Internet seems ridiculously reduced — we are talking minutes, if not seconds. Simple. As easy as typing a few words in Google.”

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:What is the point? (Score 1) 138 138

What do we get from sending a meat robot to mars, other than the sort of daredevil glory?

You're point is well-taken: robotic missions make a lot more sense than manned ones.

However, I'd like to point out that glory is worth something too. It can inspire a generation of individuals to invest themselves in STEM, for instance. It can encourage people to look to the future, instead of staying mired in the past (and aren't a lot of us guilty of that?). Glory can re-frame how we see ourselves, our species, our capabilities and priorities. Symbolic acts have tremendous potency, and history can swing upon such fulcrums.

Comment: Re:blu ray? (Score 1) 119 119

How is using blu ray cheaper than hard drives?

3 TB will fit on 120 25-GB BD-Rs. At 40 cents each, that's $48 in media costs. If you do like I do and reserve 20% for dvdisaster error-recovery data, you're still only looking at $60.

A 3 TB WD Green will set you back $95. (Want to spring for the NAS-rated Red drives instead? That'll be $119. Their absolute cheapest 3 TB hard drives are a couple of models from Seagate and Toshiba at $90 each.)

Comment: Re:FB hardware may be lucrative... (Score 1) 119 119

The trick is getting BD media into the terabytes and getting it at a price point where it is decently affordable. For example, a 100 GB BDXL disk is $65, but it should be about 10% of that price in order to be a viable backup medium.

My last spindle of 25 GB BD-Rs cost me maybe $0.60 each or so. I could drive down to Fry's right now and pick up a spindle for about $0.80 each. A 4x increase in storage density isn't worth a two-order-of-magnitude increase in price. I would be surprised if Farcebook didn't arrive at the same conclusion.

Going by the numbers from the video in TFA, they're getting over 10k BD-Rs in a rack. While the basic concept isn't new, they appear to have developed it to a considerably higher density.

Comment: i switched back from chrome to safari (Score 3, Interesting) 305 305

For a while chrome was better than safari but not any more. Safari consumes much less resources than chrome and it handles multiple tab loads much better on my boxen. The final straw was when chrome deleted every single bookmark during a synch. Lost everything and no way to recover it. I tried restoring a backup but chrome just resynched and erased it again . With safari time machine works beautifully.

My faborite browser is Firefox but that's only because it has the zotero plug in.

This article is total rubbish

Comment: iOS users feel it (Score 1, Insightful) 305 305

I currently have a web radio transceiver front panel application that works on Linux, Windows, MacOS, Android, Amazon Kindle Fire, under Chrome, Firefox, or Opera. No porting, no software installation. See for details of what I'm writing.

The one unsupported popular platform? iOS, because Safari doesn't have the function used to acquire the microphone in the web audio API (and perhaps doesn't have other parts of that API), and Apple insists on handicapping other browsers by forcing them to use Apple's rendering engine.

I don't have any answer other than "don't buy iOS until they fix it".

Comment: Re:No GPL (Score 1) 159 159

Citation needed.

No citation needed, it's an assertion based upon the most rudimentary understanding of economics. Of course, I might be wrong.

Sure. But there are other ways to pay programmers than by the sale of proprietary software.

You are correct. However, all of the points referenced therein make presumptions about open source software that was already mature. How do you think such open source software becomes mature? By developers with programming skills. How do those developers gain programming skills? Hint: not solely through open source projects.

And you don't think the benefit flows in the other direction too?

Of course it does. There are many mutually-beneficial relationships between open source projects and commercial entities that use them.

Comment: Conflict of Interest (Score 3, Insightful) 305 305

It's simple. As long as a significant portion of Apple's revenue comes from having a closed, "walled-garden" ecosystem, Apple will be disinclined to participate anything that might result in the demise of that ecosystem. After all, it's hard to be in the same boat as everyone else supporting WebAssembly etc., when that same technology will ultimately result in the death of on-platform app stores.

Getting the job done is no excuse for not following the rules. Corollary: Following the rules will not get the job done.