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Comment: Re:Funny how this works ... (Score 1) 131

by Em Adespoton (#47977031) Attached to: Netflix Rejects Canadian Regulator Jurisdiction Over Online Video

How is Netflix wrong here? They're an American company operating in the US, they have licenses to allow people to request streams from Canada, but the Canadians have no jurisdiction over what an American firm operating out of America does.

This is a regulatory overreach the way that that asinine media tax to pay for piracy is. If the customers lose out, it's because their regulators are incompetent.

Netflix doesn't allow Canadians to access Netflix USA -- they instead have a service called Netflix Canada that is only available to Canadians. Where this crosses the border is that they bank through a Canadian bank to process orders, therefore they are operating out of Canada.

Regulatory overreach would be the CRTC going after Netflix USA for something they're doing in the US; this is trade happening in Canada, so that's why they're involved.

That said, the CRTC likely doesn't have the right to step in here in the first place, even though they can, and have not been slapped down by the government in the past for doing similar things. That's because they're supposed to regulate broadcasting; the rest of their remit is on very shaky ground/legislation.

Comment: Re:Funny how this works ... (Score 1) 131

by Em Adespoton (#47976951) Attached to: Netflix Rejects Canadian Regulator Jurisdiction Over Online Video

The interesting thing here is that while the CRTC clarified the definition of broadcasting here, they've also expanded their role beyond broadcasting. What Netflix is challenging here (rightly) is whether they actually have the right to do so. I'd say they don't, but the government has given them a LOT of leeway over the years.

Comment: Re:Funny how this works ... (Score 1) 131

by Em Adespoton (#47976895) Attached to: Netflix Rejects Canadian Regulator Jurisdiction Over Online Video

They're not legislating anyone; they don't have that power. What they're trying to do is assert commecial control over Netflix Canada who isn't backing up their claims with actual numbers.

CRTC is very much involved in the Canadian part of the Internet, just like they are in Canadian imports of other things such as optical media and digital storage in general.

In case you didn't get it yet...

This is about Canadian companies (not Netflix USA, who Netflix doesn't let Canadians use) fighting for control over who gets to decide how/how much Canadian content is made available in Canada, and how.

Comment: Re:Funny how this works ... (Score 5, Informative) 131

by Em Adespoton (#47974485) Attached to: Netflix Rejects Canadian Regulator Jurisdiction Over Online Video

When it's American broadcasters going after Canada's icravetv, American courts had no problem getting a US court order that basically ended the service, because it was a rebroadcaster.

Can anyone seriously argue that Netflix isn't also rebroadcasting TV content?

Two weights, two measures. What a mess! And really, whatever solution will be a mess.

The difference is that NetFlix gets permission for rebroadcasting -- they have a license. That's why they don't have the same selection that other rebroadcasters do -- because they're licensing content on a show-by-show basis, not taking the OTA stream and routing it over the Internet.

This case is kind of unfortunate, as both the CRTC and Netflix are in the wrong, and both sides are unwilling to back down and come to a reasonable compromise, as that would threaten their power base.

The problem here is that the CRTC can stop all payment via Canadian credit cards to Netflix, and Netflix can support customers paying via alternate methods who are willing to stream over a VPN -- so the result of this conflict is that both sides lose, and the citizen (not consumer, although them too) loses even more.

But this whole thing is really about Rogers and Shaw lobbying the CRTC to block foreign competition for their new Shome project. CRTC is probably quite happy to be flexing their "muscle" in this situation after continually taking a beating from US lobbying interests on allowing US content onto Canadian networks.

So yeah; it's a huge mess to sort out.

Comment: Re:The holy grail (Score 1) 37

by Em Adespoton (#47969285) Attached to: New Long-Range RFID Technology Helps Robots Find Household Objects

Think of it this way... design a blueprint of your building in something like sketchup, and tag all the different surfaces according to type. Then put antennas in strategic places in the structure (could do 3 in each room, or surround the entire building) and turn on the multiband antennas.

The RF interference should be able to be mapped in this way fairly easily; especially if you set state and then open/close doors, turn WiFi on/off, turn on lights/heaters, etc.

Record all this state information, and then with minimal training, the system should be able to identify all mobile objects and when they moved.

If you toss in the RFID chips here, you could serialize each major mobile item, and actively track them anywhere in the structure.

This isn't new, and doesn't need all that much knowledge of RF, just a good AI that can learn.

See: for one way it's been done.

Comment: Easy solution... (Score 4, Insightful) 319

by Em Adespoton (#47948779) Attached to: Canadian Regulator Threatens To Impose New Netflix Regulation

I've got a solution that will make everyone happy:
Have NetFlix partner with the NFB to distribute NFB content... globally. Nothing like providing global access to Canadian content. NetFlix could even provide it for free to everyone in Canada with an account but no current subscription. Under this setup, the CRTC wouldn't have a leg to stand on, as at that point, they will get their Canadian Content on NetFlix (not sure about the French/English ratio though).


I'm pretty sure this really has nothing to do with NetFlix and EVERYTHING to do with the new consortium raising a Canadian NetFlix "competitor" (Shomi) whispering nasty things in the CRTC's ear. Yes, blame Rogers/Shaw for this fracas, as they're likely where the blame really lies.

Comment: Re:Too expensive (Score 3, Interesting) 104

by Em Adespoton (#47941159) Attached to: Dremel Releases 3D Printer

Have you ever used a dremel tool?
For the most part they're crap. Perhaps before the '80s thay had good stuff but it's been downhill for a long time.

I'll bite. I've used a Dremel-brand dremel tool in the late 90's, and found it solid (if made of a lot of plastic), dependable, and accurate. The accessories were way too expensive, but Black & Decker accessories are of the same quality and fit in the Dremel opening.

B&D, Ryobi, Makita and similar manufacturer's dremel tools though -- I've found to be underpowered, made of cheap components, and have a shaft locking mechanism that is abysmal, not holding the shaft in a centred manner at all. DeWalt is also pretty good.

Likewise, I've had hit-and-miss experience with Dremel's other offerings -- some are good, some aren't. But their original tool still works as well as it ever did.

Comment: Re: So everything is protected by a 4 digit passco (Score 1) 503

by Em Adespoton (#47941111) Attached to: Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

True... which is why talking about large-bit encryption isn't really the issue; it's the implementations that are the issue. I was mostly rebutting the part about exponential difficulty with bitsize making your encryption more secure. I'd give *properly implemented* AES-256 another decade at least before it has any security issues whatsoever. By the time AES-256 can be cracked via brute force, the entire algorithm will be out of date, so increasing bitsize won't be much of a gain.

But it doesn't matter how many bits are used or what algorithm, or even what implementation, if even one password at, or above your level on the system being protected is in the Adobe password file, people.

Comment: Re:CS bonanza (Score 1) 503

by Em Adespoton (#47940479) Attached to: Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

This actually is a good idea for an Apple Accessory(TM) -- make a line of jewelery that can store your passcode in a "hidden" compartment. Any attacker would need to get both the jewelery and the phone to gain access, which is better than nothing at all.

However, the device unlocking problem has already been solved on iPhones: TouchID. You don't need your passcode to unlock a device, you need your passcode to manage the device in cases where your thumb is missing or you're not actually on the device, but need access to its remotely-stored data.

As such, it makes much more sense to make your passcode really long, write it down, and store it in a safety deposit box. Day to day, you won't need it. But if you do, one trip to the bank and 10 min in the safe room with your phone will be enough to recover from whatever situation you've got yourself into.

Comment: Re:Backups are still provided with a smile (Score 1) 503

by Em Adespoton (#47940407) Attached to: Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

I think this requires clarification: If you back up to iCloud instead of your personal computer, the backups are encrypted with keys that Apple has. And anyone who has your UUID (which they can likely pick up by sitting on the same open WiFi as you) can spoof your device for a restore of said backup, without requiring 2-factor authentication (they'll still need to figure out your Apple ID and password, or have those given to them by Apple).

If you back up locally, you control the backup key, and it never gets broadcast over a rogue WiFi AP, as any backup attempts (even if you enable WiFi backup) have to happen to a local server, and are not tied to your UUID.

Comment: Re:So everything is protected by a 4 digit passcod (Score 1) 503

by Em Adespoton (#47940303) Attached to: Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

One other thing to note: on iDevices, if you select a non-simple passcode that is only numbers, the device still presents the simple PIN screen instead of a full keypad. The difference is that it sticks an "OK" button in the text field that you press when you're done.

This provides a passcode of uncertain length (X choose 10, 0 x 4096 or so, realistically 16) that is still relatively easy to enter. It's not as secure as a full-on textual passcode, but it beats a 4-digit PIN even if you only use a 4-digit PIN -- as the attacker has no means to know how many digits long your PIN is -- as it *could* be "11151111" or even "1231230123123" which is pretty quick and easy to enter on a PIN pad (almost as fast as 12345), is 13 characters long, and really difficult to guess.

Measure twice, cut once.