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UK Gov't Plans To Push "Emergency" Surveillance Laws 147

Posted by timothy
from the back-in-line-citizen dept.
beaker_72 (1845996) writes The Guardian reports that the UK government has unveiled plans to introduce emergency surveillance laws into the UK parliament at the beginning of next week. These are aimed at reinforcing the powers of security services in the UK to force service providers to retain records of their customers phone calls and emails. The laws, which have been introduced after the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled that existing laws invaded individual privacy, will receive cross-party support and so will not be subjected to scrutiny or challenged in Parliament before entering the statute books. But as Tom Watson (Labour backbench MP and one of few dissenting voices) has pointed out, the ECJ ruling was six weeks ago, so why has the government waited until now to railroad something through. Unless of course they don't want it scrutinised too closely.

Comment: Re:$36? (Score 1) 646

by DarthStrydre (#40796907) Attached to: How a 3-Year-Old Can Open a Gun Safe

5 button Simplex locks have just over 1000 combinations... meaning on average you can find the right one in about 500 tries. At 2 seconds per try (which is actually rather slow after you get the hang of it), iterating through takes about 15 minutes to get in. If one knows the general pattern used by listening one time (two sets of presses) this further reduces the search space.

I hope your daughter never has to be left alone more than 15 minutes.

If they had only used a 6'th button on a standard Simplex lock...

Comment: GPS does output UTS as soon as it has a lock. (Score 1) 290

by DarthStrydre (#40092967) Attached to: Know What Time It Is? Your Medical Device Doesn't

You confuse "GPS time" with GPS as a source for precision time. The difference between GPS time and UTC is broadcast every 12 minutes in the data stream, and includes the accumulated whole second difference, as well as drift value to correct for sub-microsecond. GPS receivers have access to this information and generally output UTC as soon as they read the offset value. Since the offset does not change often, it can be stored and used on subsequent startups, though this is a vendor specific decision. Though I've heard that they exist, every receiver and time source I've used outputs UTC by default by the time it downloads the full almanac and starts reporting position.

Comment: Re:All about HDCP (Score 1) 704

by DarthStrydre (#38767082) Attached to: VGA and DVI Ports To Be Phased Out Over Next 5 Years

ADAT Lightpipe uses the same fiber and physical connectors as S/PDIF TOSLINK. It handles 8 channels of uncompressed PCM audio at 24 bit, 48kHz, for a totally unimpressive but sufficient bitrate of 9.2MBit. A slightly better quality ADC is needed on the receiving end of the signal due to the higher bandwidth, but is mostly the same.

Comment: Re:why phase out DVI? (Score 1) 704

by DarthStrydre (#38766600) Attached to: VGA and DVI Ports To Be Phased Out Over Next 5 Years

SATA CAN be hotpluggable, but is not required to be. That said, most hosts support it, though only in AHCI mode, not emulation mode. From the systems I've seen in the field, about half are using IDE emulation mode, either because the OS doesn't natively support it and the installer did not spend time looking for drivers, or because it is a "fleet" computer where the BIOS was configured in a "safe" mode.

Comment: Counterexample (Score 1) 135

by DarthStrydre (#38678862) Attached to: IBM Shrinks Bit Size To 12 Atoms

Tunneling accelerometers are mainstream. They are basically a STM without the scanning ability, with the "pinhead" on a MEMs arm. These are in tiny chips. Combining these with perhaps thermal expansion "heater" actuators, and you have a crude yet tiny STM, with very limited storage capacity (limited by X * Y travel / bit spacing.

COMPASS [for the CDC-6000 series] is the sort of assembler one expects from a corporation whose president codes in octal. -- J.N. Gray

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