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Comment: Re: Satellite not needed (Score 1) 114

by orasio (#48651171) Attached to: Cuba Says the Internet Now a Priority

I find it quite believable, seeing how the Venezuelan govt simply issues orders to all ISPs to block the IP ranges of sites that make them uncomfortable; a famous victim is DolarToday.com, a site that tracks the black market currency exchange rate and now publishes unflattering news and opinion. I'd include a few traceroutes but I'm posting from my phone. Even pastebin.com was blocked for more than a year (haven't checked recently) because a list of URLs with leaked emails wad posted there.

Currency black markets are not "unconfortable", they are _illegal_. I'm sure there are examples of censorship in Venezuela, but that's not one.

Comment: Re:Modern Cellular is the way to go (Score 1) 114

by orasio (#48651137) Attached to: Cuba Says the Internet Now a Priority

My city, Montevideo, an oldish city, with some similarities to Havana, was also wired by a state owned telco with fiber. Also most of the urban country is already fibered.
It's taking a bit over a couple of years, most of the city is covered, and the smallest plan is 30 dollars (or free if you a single Giga per month is enough for you).
Of course, 35 dollars in Cuba might be expensive, but also most of the cost they had here was labor, construction salaries are high. They wouldn't have that problem over there. They could even have you dig the ditches yourself if you want internet, dammit.

Anyhow, I would go with LTE. It's probably a lot cheaper, and flexible enough.

Businesses

Displaced IT Workers Being Silenced 398

Posted by samzenpus
from the nobody-spoke-for-me dept.
dcblogs writes A major problem with the H-1B debate is the absence of displaced IT workers in news media accounts. Much of the reporting is one-sided — and there's a reason for this. An IT worker who is fired because he or she has been replaced by a foreign, visa-holding employee of an offshore outsourcing firm will sign a severance agreement. This severance agreement will likely include a non-disparagement clause that will make the fired worker extremely cautious about what they say on Facebook, let alone to the media. On-the-record interviews with displaced workers are difficult to get. While a restrictive severance package may be one handcuff, some are simply fearful of jeopardizing future job prospects by talking to reporters. Now silenced, displaced IT workers become invisible and easy to ignore. This situation has a major impact on how the news media covers the H-1B issue and offshore outsourcing issues generally.

+ - Comcast Forgets To Delete Revealing Note From Blog Post

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Earlier today, Comcast published a blog post to criticize the newly announced coalition opposing its merger with Time Warner Cable and to cheer about the FCC’s decision to restart the “shot clock” on that deal. But someone at Kabletown is probably getting a stern talking-to right now, after an accidental nugget of honesty made its way into that post. Comcast posted to their corporate blog today about the merger review process, reminding everyone why they think it will be so awesome and pointing to the pro-merger comments that have come in to the FCC. But they also left something else in. Near the end, the blog post reads, “Comcast and Time Warner Cable do not currently compete for customers anywhere in America. That means that if the proposed transaction goes through, consumers will not lose a choice of cable companies. Consumers will not lose a choice of broadband providers. And not a single market will see a reduction in competition. Those are simply the facts.” The first version of the blog post, which was also sent out in an e-mail blast, then continues: “We are still working with a vendor to analyze the FCC spreadsheet but in case it shows that there are any consumers in census blocks that may lose a broadband choice, want to make sure these sentences are more nuanced.” After that strange little note, the blog post carries on in praise of competition, saying, “There is a reason we want to provide our customers with better service, faster speeds, and a diverse choice of programming: we don’t want to lose them.”"

Comment: Re:Really? (Score 1) 196

by orasio (#48516211) Attached to: IoT Is the Third Big Technology 'Wave' In the Last 50 Years, Says Harvard

Networked is not the same. Internet connected or something like that might be better.
Also, networked _might_ imply wired for some, while IoT is more in the line of wireless, standalone.
Internet enabled is good, but already means other old, unrelated things.

It is a new trend, that is actually gaining some momentum right now, cheap systems on chip, BLE, and stuff, and it needs a name, so others what you are talking about. IoT is as good a name as any other. It doesn't really bother me, even if it's silly.

No reason to keep whining about it. There are possibly tens of thousands of tech people reading this today, if you have a better name, descriptive, not stupid, or whatever, please share it, below the line ----v , we might like it, start using it instead of IoT, and it just might catch on.
------

Comment: Perspective (Score 4, Informative) 338

I'm one of said H1B visas, now with a green card. Been here almost exactly 10 years now, after Apple bought my company. I came here for the money and the weather, not for anything else. Frankly I don't think the US society is as "free" as people here seem to believe.

I've mentioned this here before, and (understandably, no-one likes bad news) I tend to get down voted for it, but the simple honest truth of the matter is that the USA isn't geared for looking after people, it's geared towards controlling people. There's things I like about it (the job is great, the weather is excellent, the people (as individuals who I meet day-to-day) are generally wonderful unless driving, the money is still good, I like my house and I met my wife here - my son is dual American/British).

There's things I don't like too, (the militarisation of the police, the lack of any reasonable healthcare, the "I'm alright Jack, screw you" attitude of a *lot* of people - weirdly enough those who often really *aren't* alright, the schooling system, and for lack of any better term, the country's soul). As time passes, and I get older, these seem to be more important. I can't see myself retiring here, and in fact I can't see myself here in another 10 years. That's not the attitude I came to the US with, it's something I've developed while I've been here.

Let's be frank here, I'm not trying to boast, but I'm one of the 'have's - I have a million dollar house (which sounds a lot more impressive than it really is in this neighbourhood) which is almost paid off, I have a high six-figure income, and I've money in the bank. I'm not a "1%er" but I'm up there with the rest... however, even with all of this, I'm not happy with the way the country is going. There's little-to-no safety net for joe public, and seemingly (*both* houses Republican, seriously ?) no desire for that. I think the USA is far closer to oligarchy than democracy, and the long-term trend just looks like it gets worse from here on out.

[sigh]

Simon.

+ - What Does The NSA Think Of Cryptographers? ->

Submitted by mikejuk
mikejuk (1801200) writes "A recently declassified NSA house magazine, CryptoLog, reveals some interesting attitudes between the redactions. What is the NSA take on cryptography?
The article of interest is a report of a trip to the 1992 EuroCrypt conference by an NSA cryptographer whose name is redacted.We all get a little bored having to sit though presentations that are off topic, boring or even down right silly but we generally don't write our opinions down. In this case the criticisms are cutting and they reveal a lot about the attitude of the NSA cryptographers. You need to keep in mind as you read that this is intended for the NSA crypto community and as such the writer would have felt at home with what was being written.
Take for example:
Three of the last four sessions were of no value whatever, and indeed there was almost nothing at Eurocrypt to interest us (this is good news!). The scholarship was actually extremely good; it’s just that the directions which external cryptologic researchers have taken are remarkably far from our own lines of interest.
It seems that back in 1992 academic cryptographers were working on things that the NSA didn't consider of any importance. Could things be the same now?
The gulf between the two camps couldn't be better expressed than:
The conference again offered an interesting view into the thought processes of the world’s leading “cryptologists.” It is indeed remarkable how far the Agency has strayed from the True Path.
The ironic comment is clearly suggesting that the NSA is on the "true path" whatever that might be.
Clearly the gap between the NSA and the academic crypto community is probably as wide today with the different approaches to the problem being driven by what each wants to achieve. It is worth reading the rest of the article."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:I bet Infosys and Tata are dancing in the stree (Score 5, Insightful) 186

Seriously - the two biggest (ab)users of the H1B system are Tata and Infosys... and they're both Indian corporations.

{rant}I guess in fairness to Obama, he managed to screw both blue and white-collar workers in one fell swoop...{/rant}

Anyone know the lobbyist money trail for this bit of it, or can I safely guess Microsoft, Apple, Google, Intel, etc... ?

Hard time following this. The potential 4.7 million people contribute billions to the economy and without them we'd tank again. I heard the same screwing the american worker and milking entitlements myths repeatedly. It puts me in mind of what one commentator once referred to as "Factoids", arguments which have no truth at all, but people repeat over and over in hopes they will become true. Well, some of that is working, because some people are believing these tales as truths and would happily cut their own throats (mustard and onion extra) to act on these fantasies.

Tech, agriculture, service industries, foot services, etc. all benefit from the well behaved illegals. And we, the people who buy goods or services from these people benefit, as well. It's a mystery to me that so much untruth is accepted these days. I figure it began with Rush Limbaugh and is now carried out by hundreds of others since, who wind up people for profit. Nothing seems to sell like telling people what they need to fear and whom they need to loath.

Comment: Re: Not quite true (Score 1) 307

by Zeinfeld (#48430745) Attached to: UK Hotel Adds Hefty Charge For Bad Reviews Online

Whether the term is enforceable or not is debatable and almost certain to be rendered moot. Unlike US Republicans, UK Conservatives do actually believe in the rule of law and honest business practices (sort of). There isn't any party who believes that screwing the consumer is a constitutional right. There will be a bill passed.

A rather more direct question is whether the hotelier was entitled to collect the charge under the credit card agreement. And that is unambiguous, he isn't. A credit card merchant cannot use a charge card to recover a disputed charge. It does not matter what the purported contract term was or if it is enforceable. The credit card agreements are designed to prevent cardholders from dishonest merchants. So the consumer will get their refund and the hotelier will find themselves facing a 30 quid chargeback fee.

The only option for the hotelier to recover would be to take the matter to court. The most he could win is the hundred pounds, if he lost he would likely be out the legal costs which could be a couple of thousand. Small claims courts don't usually award costs but they might well do so in this case. Judges tend to detest bullies.

Comment: Re: Ask the credit card for a refund (Score 1) 307

by Zeinfeld (#48430547) Attached to: UK Hotel Adds Hefty Charge For Bad Reviews Online

Its more than that, without regulation you end up with a lemon-law market.

Lots of times the difference between an honest product and a dishonest one only becomes apparent years later. If the product is safety equipment you only find out if the hard hat works when someone drops the brick on your head.

The libertarian theory that self interest will drive people to make honest products has turned out to be utterly false. In fact it turns out to be quite difficult for a company that intends to do the right thing to do so. I once had to get a guy fired after I found he had goosed his response rates for customer support calls by deliberately setting the phone tree up as a maze.

People do all sorts of idiotic short sighted stuff. This hotelier for example got his pants in a twist over a bad review and now he has probably sunk his business completely.

Rational choice is not an empirical fact of human behavior. It is a modelling assumption that tends to give good results in certain cases. But it does not hold for corporations because the interests of the corporation are not identical to those of the employees. All those banks who go belly up because the traders get big rewards for raking in profits and face no consequences for a loss. I don't gamble with my own money but if you want to give me $100,000 to gamble with I am happy to take it to Vegas, find a roulette wheel and let you take 100% of any losses and 90% of any gains.

fortune: cpu time/usefulness ratio too high -- core dumped.

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