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Comment: Re:well (Score 1) 124

by Tom (#47535431) Attached to: The Psychology of Phishing

Ahh, so you work at one of those places with horrible culture.

I don't work there anymore, but I've been in the security industry long enough to know a number of companies, as well as the uncomfortable squirming that follows if you ask security training providers for independent evidence supporting their claims.

It's not a problem of IT security. Fire security trainings are quite similar, except that they have evolved thanks to decades of experience - in a modern company, those responsible know that the fire drill is primarily to drain the assigned helpers and floor supervisors, not the employees.

Instead of saying "this is stupid, I know this stuff" you could volunteer to help mentor people or simply grunt "yup, saw a guy get hacked by this once" instead of holding negativity.

I never said security is stupid. I am saying security awareness trainings are a waste of time, by and large. Tell me, how many people have you had in those trainings you thought before they went in that giving your password to random strangers is a good idea? 90% of the content of these trainings is either boring because everyone knows it already or boring because it's too technical and not interesting that they filter it out.

I've had the responsibility of writing or reworking existing IT security policies, and my advise has always been to make them as short and simple as possible. I've seen a multinational corporation vomit up a 300 page security policy, which was really great from an ISO 270xx POV, but aside from the guys in the security department who wrote it, I'm fairly certain I was the only other human being who actually read all of it, ever.

I love security. But I think our industries approach to users and security is fundamentally flawed and trainings are a band-aid on a broken arm - placebo treatments that don't even touch the real issues.

Comment: Re:you mean you HEAR fireworks (Score 1) 374

Disproportionate response is a war crime.

The problem with this is that no-one seems to be able to coherently explain what a proportional response should look like. Every time I ask people, they immediately go into rant mode about "Israeli fascist" and "they've had that coming" etc. But no-one is willing to actually lay out the proper response to the rockets step-by-step.

No guidance systems.

They're still aimed, it's just that the target area is very wide. But in most cases, those target areas are city centers.

So maximized they hadn't killed a single person in almost three years. Try again.

Not for the lack of trying. It's one of the reasons why I consider Hamas leadership basically insane - it's clear that what they're doing is just plainly not working, and is only making things worse for them, but they're doing it anyway.

Comment: Re:pfft, 3.5% overrun (Score 2) 106

by demachina (#47535143) Attached to: SLS Project Coming Up $400 Million Short

"I can't imagine how demoralizing it is to spend years working on a project that would ultimately succeed"

None of NASA's major manned spaced projects are even remotely likely to succeed, they are not intended to do so any more. They are just a place to blow money, create jobs and put money in Lockheed and Boeing pockets. More importantly they buy votes in the critical swing state of Florida.

They are designed to run 4-8 years, produce nothing except votes, paychecks and contractor profits, then they get cancelled and start over. It is way easier and less risk than actually making anything that will fly.

It is not the political process that is broken, it is NASA and the political process.

Get a clue, and spend a few billion on SpaceX to help finish Falcon Heavy. I'm not sure why SLS is even on the table at this point, it isn't remotely competitive.

Lockheed and Boeing also need to be completely removed from the process. They are making a mint milking DOD contracts, they don't need to be in middle of the civilian space program fleecing NASA and taxpayers there too. They do not use money wisely, they devour everything thrown their way and produce as little as possible in return.

Comment: Re:FUD filled.... (Score 1) 191

by swb (#47534635) Attached to: How a Solar Storm Two Years Ago Nearly Caused a Catastrophe On Earth

Since this whole war on terrorism nonsense, they've gotten kind of funny about tours for the sake of curiosity.

The Union Electric plant didn't have a visitor center -- you just showed up outside an entrance and employee took you anywhere you wanted to go. I even got to go inside one of the generators.

Comment: Re:sure, works for France (Score 2) 115

You can have all the vacation time you want anywhere you live

Which is why every American takes 6 weeks in the summer.

In my experience, most permanent job employers don't like to negotiate on vacation time. Sometimes they'll give on a day or two, but usually they're not crazy about vacation time that deviates from whatever the position qualifies for. The only explanation ever given to me was that because salary is "secret" it's easier to compensate employees differentially; vacation is visible to other employees at the same level and differential compensation creates tension.

In a contract employment situation you can negotiate anything, but I've found in shorter term contracts there's usually some kind of deadline that's non-negotiable, making free-lance vacationing a little bit challenging.

Comment: Re:Blah (Score 1) 115

Of course, the employees probably already spend 2-3 hours/year dealing with the piece of shit that is Microsoft Office. They probably also devote some amount of IT time and resources to dealing with licensing and activation issues, additional troubleshooting associated with imaging and installation procedures, etc.

Actually, really, I'm not being fair. MS Office is not a piece of shit. It's a really good application, though the whole installation/licensing/activation thing can be a bit of a nightmare at times. LibreOffice is also a very good application that most people could use as their office suit without serious difficulties. Mostly people just get upset because people know it's free. The fact that it's cheap makes them think it's "cheap" in the sense of "flimsy" and "poor quality", so they resent being moved onto it. That seems to be the single largest issue, in my experience.

Comment: Re:Sounds like something someone should do (Score 1) 89

by nine-times (#47534335) Attached to: Google Looking To Define a Healthy Human

but are there any examples of our successfully reverse-engineering a system as complex as we are robustly enough to make those sorts of determinations?

I don't know if there is a system as complex as we are, so you're right, it's going to be difficult. On the plus side, we've already been working on the project for a few thousand years, and we started making some real progress in the last hundred years or so.

Comment: Sounds like something someone should do (Score 1) 89

by nine-times (#47534091) Attached to: Google Looking To Define a Healthy Human

As someone with a science background, I always find it shocking how much random guesswork goes on in medicine. You'd think that we could take a person in, take a bunch of different samples for analysis, test their DNA, run a full body scan, and just find anything that wasn't working the way it should. Ideally, I think our goal should be to be able to find illness even when the patient doesn't know it's there.

It'd be great, for example, if you could go to the doctor and get a battery of tests, and have him say, "Hey, so you've been feeling a bit tired recently, right?"

The patient says, "Yeah, I guess I haven't been sleeping well, and..."

And the doctor interrupts, "Nope. I'm pretty sure the problem is that you haven't been eating enough [whatever]. It's causing too much of [something] in your system, which is causing you to be lethargic."

I would imagine that part of the problem is that you can't establish what constitutes a problematic variance from "normal" until you establish what is an acceptable variance from "normal". You can't establish what constitutes an acceptable variance from "normal" until you have some baseline of "normal".

Comment: Re:It is their fault. (Score 1) 223

It's all the ones that are useless to serve or be eaten by humans that are going extinct.

The problem is, most animal species are useful in the same way as nails in a wall are useful: sure, you can remove one or two without any apparent ill effect, but keep taking them off and the roof will fall on your head.

Ecosystem is a machine, and while it can adjust to a part going missing or operational parameters changing that capacity has limits. Kill enough species or warm the world enough and you trigger a domino effect. It won't be the end of the world, but it will be the end of our world.

But of course the temptation to take just one more is too much. It just goes to show that human brains and mindset aren't actually fit to handle our current level of power. I wonder if this is the Great FIlter.

Comment: Lame. (Score 2, Interesting) 92

by Moof123 (#47533351) Attached to: eSports Starting To Go Mainstream

Regular sports are already a pretty obnoxious part of our society. Fandom brings out an ugly semi-repressed tribal side of people. Most sports themselves are lame and boring to watch on TV,especially when the wanker of an announcer just can't shut up and has to drone on with endless repeats of some anecdote.

Sports, like electronic games, can be a lot of fun to play, mostly awful to watch.

Stay off my lawn too.

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