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Comment Re:Interesting. (Score 1) 176

It's surprising that China has not been more forceful with NK. China's leadership are all closet capitalists and are very pragmatic. Every move NK makes only increases the size of the US military footprint in the region. Japan and SK are requesting the US to deploy missile defense batteries in the region. Missile defense systems that could very easily be used to degrade China's offensive and defensive missile forces. That is the last thing China wants to see.

I have been to both countries and talked with average citizens of both. The west vastly overestimates China's influence over the DPRK. North Korea might have been China's puppet 60 years ago, but that is not the case now. China is the DPRK's biggest trade partner, they know it, and they abuse that situation at every opportunity.

China has the longest land border of any country, and they border with 14 sovereign states (tied with Russia). They don't want any more adversaries on their doorstep, especially western-friendly ones. If Korea reunited, the north half of the country would probably become more and more democratic, and be open to the influence of the US. China does not want that. If North Korea's economy improved, they would be a low-cost competitor to Chinese industries. China does not have any incentive to act in the best interests of North Korea. They have a large interest in keeping North Korea a poor, isolated, backwater nation.

All of this creates a situation where China is intentionally holding North Korea down, trying to bully them around, and generally not being a good neighbor. After decades of this, why would North Korea take China seriously when it appears that China just wants to hold them back? China and North Korea are not best buddies like many people seem to think. At best, their relationship resembles the US-Mexico relationship, except that the border actually does have a fence, and China made North Korea build it.

Comment Re:Interesting. (Score 1) 176

Yea, no way that could go wrong says the guy who clearly doesn't live in Seoul, South Korea with their family and all their assets within marching distance from over a million North Korean soldiers.

Are you speaking from personal experience? Are you genuinely afraid? I have been to North Korea and the idea that they are a serious threat to the southern part of the peninsula is laughable. They face not one, but two powerful armies on the same border. Their military is woefully out of date, and despite their pride, they do recognize that they don't stand much of a chance in a fight against the combined South Korean and US militaries. China does NOT have their back on almost any issue. The China-DPRK relationship looks a lot more like the US-Mexico relationship. They do collaborate on some things, but there is a lot of resentment, conflict over illegal immigration/smuggling, distrust, and dissatisfaction with the relationship on both sides.

North Korea's large standing army is quite misleading. North Korea is basically run like a large company with many departments and subsidiaries. The military is one of those departments, but a large amount of their work is not spent training for war, but building and maintaining infrastructure. They also pitch in on the farms. The military is loaned out to other government agencies whenever manpower is needed, which seems to be all the time. The bulk of the DPRK military resembles an unmechanized US Army Corp of Engineers more than a professional fighting force.

North Korea's aggressive attitude in international politics is a front to hide weakness. If you visit the country, you can see fairly quickly that their military doctrine and assets are set up like Japan in Spring 1945, not Japan of the early 1930s. The military is running the country, they will defend their country, possibly to the last man, if attacked, but launching an invasion themselves is just not on the table. The international diplomacy game that they play is similar to a cornered animal showing their teeth. They're scared of being invaded, and they don't want that. Cat's don't hiss when they are ready to pounce. They hiss when they want to be left alone.

Comment Re:Sounds good... (Score 4, Informative) 76

Here in the desert, water is a BIG issue.

Not really. If it was, they'd stop the farmers growing Alfalfa in the California deserts, then exporting it to China. The "BIG issue" is an utterly broken antiquated system of pre-1914 water rights.

I just spent 2 weeks in the Imperial Valley in Fall 2015, and 2 more weeks in the last month. You can drive through there but you can't really appreciate how damaging that style of industrial farming is to the environment until you actually go there. They are basically farming in a dust bowl by using open canal irrigation. The pesticides and fertilizer drain into the Salton Sea, an accidentally-created manmade body of water, which is drying up. As it dries up, a lot of the salts and chemicals in the water turn into a very fine dust. I drove out to the Salton Sea itself on a windy day and it looked like something straight out of Fallout 3. I could see no difference between the landscape there now and a nuclear wasteland. It's an ecological disaster. I've been to industrial farm towns all over the USA and I've never seen industrial farming like that before. The fact that it is allowed to continue to exist in California, of all states, just boggles my mind. And I work in coal power plants.

The refrain I heard often was "we grow xx% (double digit number) of the nation's fresh fruits and vegetables!". I am not going to dispute the figures. It isn't hard to gain a huge chunk of the market if you have free/cheap water, 350 days of sun, and an endless supply of cheap immigrant labor, however. That is a rare set of circumstances, and there isn't a farmer anywhere in the US that can compete against that.

Comment Re:Sounds good... (Score 1) 76

Put another way, this is approximately big enough to power the laundry room for a small apartment complex, or approximately the worst-case total power for 1-2 households.

Nobody's household ever uses 25kW (50kW / 2). I could turn on every single appliance in my apartment, AC on full blast, PCs at full load, hairdrier's drying, and the dryer on high heat and I come up with much less than 10kW.

The parent poster was correct when they estimated a 1500W heater. That's close the average household load of 1200-1800W, depending on the geographic location.

Comment Re: Then what's the point? (Score 5, Informative) 133

Again, though, that misses the point. You offer a prize to hack an insecure browser as a means of shaming the browser's developer. That's how it worked, and more to the point, that's why it worked. Have the Pwn2Own folks perhaps lost sight of that original purpose?

Obviously Firefox wasn't shamed last year, or they would have tried to improve security. Instead, they made a bunch of useless UI changes, removed features, etc. They didn't get the message. Spending large amounts of money to send them the same message again would be a wasted effort. By ignoring them this year, Pwn2Own is sending an even stronger message that Firefox is a browser to be avoided. And it doesn't cost them any prize money to send that message.

Comment Re:Then what's the point? (Score 1) 133

I thought Pwn2Own was supposed to be all about shaming vendors into cleaning up their act. If Firefox's security is really so poor, then shouldn't these guys be directing more resources toward it, rather than less?

Is this not a large part of how Microsoft was pressured into finally making certain decisions which, while clearly necessary, were very inconvenient from its own perspective? Why are we to believe that it would not work again?

Why would they do that? Firefox is losing market share and has spent a lot of effort in the past year degrading the user experience. It seems they did not make security a priority whatsoever, despite being in last place last year. Why would Pwn2Own offer prize money for Firefox exploits? That only serves to send a message that companies can slash the security budget of their browser and someone else will pick up the tab in identifying exploits.

Comment Re:Wait a mintue (Score 4, Informative) 133

The former. All modern browsers except Firefox have decomposed their browser into multiple processes, so that a compromise from one site will only gain control over an unprivileged (i.e. isolated from other stuff the user cares about) process. They also run plugins in separate processes and have fairly narrow communication paths between them. Firefox is still a massive monolithic process, including all add-ons, plugins, and so on.

This basically means that you just need one arbitrary code execution vulnerability in Firefox and it's game over. In contrast, if you have the same in Chrome, Edge, or Safari, then it's just the first step - you now have an environment where you can run arbitrary exploit code, but you can't make (most) system calls and you have to find another exploit to escape from the sandbox. Typical Chrome compromises are the result of chaining half a dozen vulnerabilities together.

Comment Re:This is a big bitchslap to Mozilla (Score 3, Informative) 133

It also scales based on processor resources. They hit serious TLB scalability issues at around 17 processes (varies a bit between CPUs, in some systems - particularly mobile - you'll hit RAM limits sooner), so if you have more tabs open than this, you will start having multiple independent sites share the same renderer process.

Comment Re:tom (Score 1) 119

Typically not to end users though. Microsoft sold the BASIC that computer vendors (including Apple) burned into ROM. Microsoft QuickBASIC for DOS contained a compiler that could produce stand-alone .exe or .com binaries, though the free QBASIC that they bundled with DOS 5 and later was a cut-down version that only included the interpreter.

Comment Re:Turing Evolved (Score 2) 152

Robots don't feel those emotions, and have committed no massacres on that scale. I trust robots more than I trust humans.

Do you trust a gun? Do you trust a bomb? Of course not, because the concept is meaningless: neither will cause harm without instructions from a human. Both can magnify the amount of harm that a human can do. Autonomous weapons, of which landmines are the simplest possible case, expand both the quantity that a person can do harm and the time over which they can do it.

During the cold war, there were at least two incidents where humans refused to follow legitimate orders to launch nuclear weapons - in either case, the likely outcome of following the orders would have been the deaths of many millions. The worst atrocities of the second world war were caused by people 'just following orders'. And you think that it's a good idea to remove the part of the chain of command capable of disobeying orders.

Comment Re:Uh... let me think about it (Score 1) 475

The person in your story was relying on his ability to read a map, which sounds pretty reasonable, and his ability to read a compass (which was not such a good plan, if he didn't sanity check it with the direction of the sun). The people in TFA, however, are carrying a device that tells them their precise position in the world to within a few metres. If you're not periodically checking and saying 'hmm, I want to get from here to here and I'm nowhere between the two points' then I think that counts as a bit stupid.

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