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Comment: Re:Results? (Score 1) 39

by Em Adespoton (#49358275) Attached to: Hoax-Detecting Software Spots Fake Papers

Well why not automate the process? SCIgen should just subscribe to the SciDetect source repo, and auto-update its copy when the trunk updates. SciDetect should then subscribe to the SCIgen source repo, and ensure that it detects any newly missed sets.

Leave this system alone for a while, and we won't need to write articles anymore, as SCIgen should do a better job of producing insightful but unintelligible drivel than you'd get from any peer-reviewed journal -- and it would detect itself to boot!

Comment: Re:Easy workaround (Score 3, Insightful) 323

by Em Adespoton (#49349371) Attached to: RSA Conference Bans "Booth Babes"

I suppose if that become too troublesome, they can ... require that contractors be able to talk knowledgeably about the product.

This would be a great idea! Just make the requirement be that anyone staffing a booth be able to describe the contents of the material they're presenting. This wouldn't prevent really smart contracted booth babes, but it would prevent what I've encountered a few times... when I go up to a booth and ask a technical detail and get a panicked look followed by a "let me go find Ted...." or a blank smile and a "I think you'll find the information you need in one of these brochures...."

Comment: Re:Are booth babes worth it? (Score 1) 323

by Em Adespoton (#49349321) Attached to: RSA Conference Bans "Booth Babes"

Except that when you've got similar booth babes at most of the booths, except the ones whose products can stand on their own (and the ones too poor to hire booth babes), "hardware manufacturer x" is associated with "run of the mill, nothing to differentiate."

Plus, as has been discussed in prior slashdot articles on this, many guys in the tech industry are actually put off by sexual forwardness and don't know how to deal with it -- which associates "hardware manufacturer x" with "this company is not one I'm comfortable working with." Not really the feelings they're trying to foster.

Comment: In defense... (Score 1) 158

by Em Adespoton (#49346897) Attached to: Many Password Strength Meters Are Downright Weak, Researchers Say

Inconsistent can go both directions: I've seen password-strength meters that balked at absolutely everything (accepting weak passwords as good, after calling wildly long and random ones poor).

Accepting weak passwords as good is never good, but calling wildly long and random ones poor sometimes has its place, depending on what they're doing.

If they're just checking that you've got the right number of non-alpha, plus upper and lower letters, then that's bad. If however they're doing hash matching, then that's good.

This is because hash collisions occur -- I've experienced a number of these; there are some really "secure" long passcodes that share a number of common hash format results with "password". If you use such a passphrase, you'll think that you are nice and secure, when in reality, anyone can just type in "password" and have full access to what you were attempting to protect.

So sometimes what looks like arbitrary prevention is actually the strength meter knowing more about how the passwords are being used and stored, and protecting you from making bad choices you might not otherwise realize exist.

But yeah; most password meters *are* just junk.

Comment: Re:Do It, it worked in AZ (Score 1) 861

by Em Adespoton (#49339737) Attached to: Gen Con Threatens To Leave Indianapolis Over Religious Freedom Bill

You forgot the asterisk beside "start your own ISP" -- often, they have special contracts set up with local government that would require you to come up with some novel transmission service (such as packet pigeon) as running new cable or transmitting over new/old spectrum is out of bounds.

But I think there's definitely some good fodder available when comparing internet service in N. America to generic service provider discrimination. Just imagine what would happen if Comcast/Verizon decided that their faith prevented them from serving politicians in Indianapolis....

Comment: Re:Do It, it worked in AZ (Score 3, Informative) 861

by Em Adespoton (#49339357) Attached to: Gen Con Threatens To Leave Indianapolis Over Religious Freedom Bill

Please cite specific gyms, clothing stores, medical centers which refuse to business with men for services that would be applicable for men. For everyone you post, I'll likely be able to post an example of the same type of business being sued and winning a discrimination lawsuit.

I'm not going to name names as they're pretty common around here -- fitness centers that advertise that they are only for women. Just google for "women-only" and you'll find all sorts of generic services aimed at women -- and a McGill University issue regarding a fitness gym and arguments for/against having gender-exclusive gyms at a university.

You look at their websites and everything they say (other than "exclusively for women") is just as applicable to men as to women. Unless you believe high-low and yoga classes are somehow incompatible with the male physique.

That said, I have no problem with women-only gyms (or men-only gyms). This is discrimination that in my view is perfectly acceptable, as it's based on real issues in our society, and is preventing negative fallout due to those issues. I'd have issues with a gym that segregated based on skin tone or native language though.

Hey... I've been into lots of high end retail stores in my casual clothes where the clerks have refused to even acknowledge my existence -- I figure they saw a guy in cheap department store clothes and figured I couldn't afford to shop there if I wanted to. Never bothered to press charges, but I guess I theoretically could have -- but it would be hard to prove anything (although security footage would help). Easier just to add them to the list of places not to spend my money, and reward the stores that DO want my patronage.

Where the problem really exists is when (like with Verizon/Comcast) there's really no other alternative service you can use. In these cases, if EVERYONE is discriminating based on sexual preferences/gender/melatonin level/perceived wealth, then individuals are being locked out of service, and that's bad.

Comment: Re:Good points, bad points (Score 1) 282

by Em Adespoton (#49336211) Attached to: Ford's New Car Tech Prevents You From Accidentally Speeding

Nobody said anything about explosive payload... just put a small EMP device in the head -- enough to take out the car and a few other devices nearby.

I think taxpayers would balk at footing the bill -- but it would be more effective than DHS giving out armored troop carriers and RPGs.

Comment: Re:Good points, bad points (Score 1) 282

by Em Adespoton (#49331859) Attached to: Ford's New Car Tech Prevents You From Accidentally Speeding

Yeah; I'd love a speed limiter similar to cruise control where I can set the speed myself from the wheel. A notification when the car *thinks* the limit has changed would also be useful.

Using this method, if traffic routinely flows at 10km/h over the limit, you could set your limit to that value; if it's bad weather, you could set your limit to 5km/h under the posted limit, with the notifier flagging when it thinks you might want to change that.

I don't like the idea of using signs and navsat to adjust the limit; if that could be toggled to notify only, I'd be a HUGE supporter of this tech.

Otherwise, If the tech becomes popular, I can foresee miscreants making fake "5km/h" signs and the police making mobile "0km/h" signs to abuse the system. Seems like this dovetails really well with a government-controlled killswitch too.

Comment: Re:And one single USB-C port (Score 1) 204

by Em Adespoton (#49331711) Attached to: Apple Doubles MacBook Pro R/W Performance

Who on earth modded this insightful???
We're talking about the 2015 13" MacBook Pro here (I've got one, 3.1GHz model). It's FAST. And it comes with a plethora of ports, including two lightning ports, HDMI port, two USB3 ports, a combo audio jack (mic/headphone), magsafe charger, etc.

This is reactionary vitriol (or attempted humor) to the entry-level MacBook that hasn't even been released yet. Of course, it will also likely have the improved PCIe throughput, but it's not what is under discussion.

Comment: Re:TAILS Linux 1.3.1 is out (March 23, 2015) (Score 1) 204

by Em Adespoton (#49331683) Attached to: Apple Doubles MacBook Pro R/W Performance

...and I just attended at talk at CanSec West that showed them first remotely flashing UEFI and then doing a quick 30 second "plug this in and press a button" to a separate computer, after which both devices started sending all data entered while TAILS was loaded back to a third computer via serial-over-TCP baked in to the UEFI and outside the OS.

Let me reiterate: they demoed something two guys cobbled together in 4 months. Something we have proof that many national governments have been doing for years.

TAILS doesn't even recognize that it's being skimmed, let alone provide any protections against this type of attack.

So while TAILS is better than many of the alternatives out there, if it is run on a computer that's been targeted by some third party (like a repressive government or megacorp), TAILS will do nothing to prevent data exfiltration. here.

Comment: Re:The dumbest thing (Score 2) 515

by Em Adespoton (#49330905) Attached to: A Bechdel Test For Programmers?

I can show one thing: the first computer software written would have failed this test.

That's because it was all written by Ada Lovelace.

Bletchley Park would have been an anomaly at the start of the digital computing era; almost all the coders were women. Of course, they weren't doing function-based programming for the most part.

The truth is, male-bias in computing didn't happen until sometime in the 80's, which is really pretty recent. This test would actually be useful to apply retrospectively to historical code more than it is useful to apply to current/future code.

The universe seems neither benign nor hostile, merely indifferent. -- Sagan

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