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Comment: Re:contamination? (Score 1) 133

by Zordak (#49174611) Attached to: Supreme Court Gives Tacit Approval To Warrantless DNA Collection

Aside from the huge privacy issues, I'm even more concerned that they would screw up collecting it. Everyone sheds DNA. Who is to say that the DNA they collect is actually from the person they think it is? DNA gets all mixed together after it leaves a person's body.

That's what juries are for. The prosecution presents evidence that the defendant's DNA was found at the scene of the crime. The defense attorney then attacks the credibility of the evidence, for example by offering an alternative theory for why his DNA was there, or attacking the method of collection to raise doubt that it's actually his DNA the police collected. (He doesn't necessarily have to provide his own DNA sample. Defendants aren't obligated to prove their innocence.) Then the investigator explains why the collection method is sound. At the end of the day, the jury decides whether the defense has raised a reasonable doubt.

Comment: Re:Nothing wrong here. (Score 3, Insightful) 133

by Zordak (#49173589) Attached to: Supreme Court Gives Tacit Approval To Warrantless DNA Collection

This comment makes absolutely no sense. Where does probable cause come from, except from an investigation? How do you expect police to do their job if they're only allowed to start collecting evidence after they get a warrant, which must be supported by evidence?

The purpose of a warrant is to allow the police to breach your otherwise constitutionally-guaranteed reasonable expectation of privacy. A warrant permits police to search your home, person, vehicle, or other private space without your permission. Other than such private spaces, police don't need permission from anybody to investigate. They certainly don't need a warrant to search a crime scene, where you have no legally-protected reasonable expectation of privacy.

Comment: Re:As the majority pointed out (Score 1) 133

by Zordak (#49173419) Attached to: Supreme Court Gives Tacit Approval To Warrantless DNA Collection

so they follow you around until they see you throw away a cup, or a piece of gum, or sneeze and toss the tissue away in a public place. Then they amble up and help themselves.

That sounds like "police work" to me. I'd rather police spend their time doing things like staking out suspected criminals than doing what the NSA does.

United States

US Govt and Private Sector Developing "Precrime" System Against Cyber-Attacks 55

Posted by samzenpus
from the knowing-is-half-the-battle dept.
An anonymous reader writes A division of the U.S. government's Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) unit, is inviting proposals from cybersecurity professionals and academics with a five-year view to creating a computer system capable of anticipating cyber-terrorist acts, based on publicly-available Big Data analysis. IBM is tentatively involved in the project, named CAUSE (Cyber-attack Automated Unconventional Sensor Environment), but many of its technologies are already part of the offerings from other interested organizations. Participants will not have access to NSA-intercepted data, but most of the bidding companies are already involved in analyses of public sources such as data on social networks. One company, Battelle, has included the offer to develop a technique for de-anonymizing BItcoin transactions (pdf) as part of CAUSE's security-gathering activities.

Comment: Re:The lesson here (Score 1) 266

by Zordak (#49095561) Attached to: Lenovo To Wipe Superfish Off PCs

There is a lot of truth to that statement. It was the cheaper consumer models that were affected. Retail profit margins are so thin that manufacturers and retailers make up for it with preloaded crapware.

Lenovo's business products were not affected by this as these aren't usually preloaded with crap. The same goes for other manufactures too. Dell and HP both offer cheap crapware infested models, along with pricier crap free business models.

You do get what you pay for.

The last consumer-grade Dell PC I bought came with a restore disk that was just a plain vanilla Windows 7 image. It didn't even have drivers. So, voila, perform a clean install right out of the box, install the drivers (from the included driver disks), and you've got a crapware-free Windows. (Of course, it's still on a consumer-grade Dell laptop, and that's a little harder to remedy. But like you say, you get what you pay for.)

Comment: Re:LDS faith has taught this for 150 years (Score 0) 305

by Zordak (#49031429) Attached to: Alcohol's Evaporating Health Benefits

Answer - There is no section that says that. It's true that some Mormons once slaughtered a group of passing settlers. It was unequivocally a bad thing to do. It can be slightly better understood (but not excused) by understanding the circumstances. Mormons were quite paranoid of outsiders, since they and their families had been driven out of several cities, raped, and murdered. There was hysteria about Johnston's Army coming into the territory, conquering it, and again raping and murdering people (this was right in the middle of the "Utah War"). In the midst of that hysteria, one group of people went completely nuts and did some horrible, inexcusable things. At first, they told Brigham Young that Indians did it, and Brigham (probably reluctant to believe that some of his own people could do something so heinous), believed them. A local grand jury also failed to indict, again probably reluctant to believe that some of their own could do something so heinous. Years later, federal prosecutors came in, and when it became clear that John Lee and his friends had in fact been responsible, the church excommunicated them (which is the worst penalty a church can or should be able to levy). Years later, Lee was convicted by an all-Mormon jury and shot, and Brigham Young opined that Lee got less than he deserved. There have been some efforts to implicate Brigham Young as a co-conspirator, but it takes a lot of winking at the actual evidence to get there. Many people believe that he made mistakes in how he handled the situation, which is a more supportable proposition.

Bringing up facts about Mormons is fine. But if you're going to do it, learn the whole story. Don't just parrot some anti-Mormon sound bite you once heard from somebody.

Comment: Re:Maybe not so useful... (Score 1) 157

by Zordak (#49030857) Attached to: DMCA Exemption Campaign Would Let Fans Run Abandoned Games

They don't lose their copyright just because they stop running a server.

But they should if one were to take seriously all that is said about the reasons why we have copyright and how it should serve the good of the society as a whole.

Perhaps, but I think that's a little extreme. I am, rather, in favor of a more reasonable copyright term. (I would not have upheld the current copyright term if I were on the Supreme Court, since "life of the author" is not a determinate time.) But even then, if they never publish the source code, copyright doesn't come into it. All you could do is copy the game binary, so you would still have to reverse engineer a game server. That's the problem with the DMCA. It reaches over traditional copyright boundaries and prohibits people from doing things like implementing something on their own, which has not copyright implications.

Are you having fun yet?