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Comment: USI Fiber is a cheap business to operate, solid (Score 1) 110

by HongPong (#48671671) Attached to: US Internet Offers 10Gbps Fiber In Minneapolis

I was lucky enough to have access to a home hookup on a lower USI tier for a while. It was of course far and away the best Internets around locally (altho now it's prompted CenturyLink to roll out). Coverage maps here http://fiber.usinternet.com/

Another thing I loved was Comcast was forced to slash its rates in the covered zip codes dramatically, finally resembling a reasonable price. The solid upstream is very good for getting videos online, altho its true that the chokepoint winds up being the Youtube server, not the pipe. The entire time, except when someone doing laundry unplugged the basement router, it never really bogged down & you could tell the peering points were not saturated like is always the Comcast experience.

I happened to run into a bunch of the USI staff at an event & they explained to me that while they didn't have much capital, the little bit they were riding on could suffice to slowly build out the network. It took awhile to develop a process w the city to get easements on the boulevards but now proceeds smoothly. Conveniently everything is reliable (who knew buried optical cables are more reliable than coax on poles?) and the whole city network gets like 4-5 service calls a day. They were actually happy to not have to bother providing TV service w its finicky boxes, because they don't cover the whole city.

The ping times to the U of Minn timeserver at were around 2-4ms if you don't go thru a router.

Obviously they were a bit proud they'd been able to hang in the biz over those years, and considered themselves the "last man standing" against the big monopolies.

Comment: TNR setup to promote interventionism (Score 1) 346

It seems no one on the thread's mentioned how TNR was setup in the World War I era to propagandize Americans into interventionism, because they were too "isolationist" and not enough support existed for empire building. They went on to promote other wars and forms of supremacy. Most recently promoting the war in Iraq. There were a sprinkling of interesting pieces here and there but it was mostly the Robert Kagan style liberal neocon guide to Empire for fanciful 21st century Lawrence of Arabia wannabees. Good riddance and I hope it somehow turns into a radically anticolonialist clickbait site.

Comment: Slashdot wins, dammit! (Score 1) 187

by HongPong (#48537127) Attached to: Microsoft Introduces<nobr> <wbr></nobr>.NET Core

Maybe it isn't everything you could hope for, but it is a huge concession to the idea that the Slashdot crowd set out in favor of so long ago. Proprietary software steadily lost ground on the merits and now MS has to release code for many aspects of their whole ecosystem. You can all tip a wine glass and scrub your monocles, it is Progress.

Comment: such branches (Score 1) 24

by HongPong (#48129849) Attached to: Linux Foundation Launches Open Source Dronecode Project

I'm looking forward to the branch of development that can take out other drones such as Amazon Monopolizers and assorted police / military drones. Possible features include pointing lasers to 'paint' them for arduino controlled ground based rapidfire paintball targeting, spraying crazy glue or webbing into their rotors, and of course flipping the damn things over. Set up a hawk's perch with some solar panels & magnetic inductance charger, fella could have a good time in Vegas w a few of these.

Comment: Nuclear is dangerous - Fukushima overlooked (Score 1) 380

by HongPong (#44913937) Attached to: Its Nuclear Plant Closed, Maine Town Is Full of Regret

It seems most commenters on this thread overlook the severity of Fukushima. It's an uncomfortable reality for techies that tech like nuclear is not really run in a responsible - more expensive - way. In Minnesota the Monticello nuclear plant is the same GE Mk II as Fukushima with the terrible spent fuel chamber design. Fortunately MN has low disaster risks compared to say the uber-dangerous Cal Edison San Onofre plant - but look how even one nuclear accident proves impossible to contain or bring to a close?!
See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Onofre_Nuclear_Generating_Station - imagine if a tsunami had hit this rickety place - it took tons of local pressure to shut it down finally. Nuclear plants sometimes degrade unpredictably like San Onofre did. Meanwhile in Japan, a country world renowned for its robot expertise, has been utterly unable to mobilize a Soviet style Chernobyl like response. Chernobyl popped once and then had a moderate fire, but Fukushima remains in slow meltdown, and if another typhoon or tsunami happens to hit the area just right, the remaining fuel rods could finally go off and metropolitan Tokyo could have to be evacuated. In this country the EPA has radically raised the 'acceptable' levels for radiation, and who knows how many nuclear incidents in the US go unreported??

I agree coal and oil based plants trigger major environmental consequences and natural gas plants drawn from fracking now cause geological & chemical damage. We need to focus on driving down aggregate demand for electricity and patching together intermittent sources (a new water-based heat cylinder idea for example could help w storage and peak, vertical windmills are safer for birds, clever plastic lenses cheapen solar etc), while phasing out catastrophe-prone technologies. In the new SimCity nuclear plants are safe if the workers are educated, if only real life were so easy :P

Comment: 700MHz Radio Spectrum battle continues (Score 1) 115

by HongPong (#38757110) Attached to: Post-9/11 DOJ Tech Project Dying After 10 Years?

I heard last year that first responders are trying to hang onto a chunk of radio spectrum that the telecoms want. I don't think it was really about encryption so much as making sure that it could do trunking correctly - units could bring in radios across the country and have working interoperability. Encryption is its own ball of crazy. I for one would rather have the fire fighters have better radios, the fuzz can generally get good radios if they want them.

This is apparently the "D Block" which is next to existing 700MHz public safety frequencies.
later: http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/dc/2011/06/911-first-responder-radio-bill-clears-committee

Comment: This code should be open-sourced? (Score 0) 199

by HongPong (#38757050) Attached to: Man Charged With Stealing Code From Federal Reserve Bank

There should be a git repository for all the code used for such core functions as the US Treasury ledger. Of course that would cause reporting to improve -- imagine if each budget operation got spit out in tweets or API-compatible calls. That would really mess up the routine at the Federal Reserve for laundering drug money & creating credit lines for foreign criminal banker arch weasels, so it's going to be closed source as far as they can take it.

Comment: SAIC builds out tracking systems roads-panopticon (Score 1) 310

I recently obtained info about SAIC participating in building a new tracking pilot system called IntelliDrive. Basically they are there to profit (cost plus) from approving the system. It's a huge industry to install military industrial tracking systems at every level of society. Story here:

Comment: Consult zerohedge for cyber/market spam nexus (Score 4, Interesting) 51

by HongPong (#35181314) Attached to: Subtle Cyber Attacks Could Tilt Global Economies

The majority of stock activity is exactly this electronic noise, it's the rule, not the exception. The whole equities market (and other ones) is a turbo-hyperactive instant messaging system of bid/ask channels and they are all basically crapflooded now at about 60-70% of daily trading volume. The "Carbon Market" is another huge scam handy for passthru moneylaundering & fraud operations. Unknown binaries have been lodged in key NASDAQ systems. The messaging "order flow" is arbitrarily frontrun (i.e. man in the middle message intercept).

The real question is what miserable slice of the activity actually represents rationally allocated capital, rather than this message crapflooding. My fave site for this topic http://zerohedge.com/ consistently nails so many anomalies, flash crashes, order stacking rule loopholes (which bids are bumped off to 'dark pools' under less than optimal logic) etc.

It would be better if there was a 5ms 'quanta' for market prices, at least that would set a minimum time-to-live for price quotes. It becomes less 'rational' as the time horizon asymptotically approaches zero.

Comment: FBI has shutoff all non-terror resources basically (Score 1) 57

by HongPong (#34220708) Attached to: The Great Cyberheist

The thing is that the FBI has basically diverted all their white collar crime resources, and probably whatever might be used to track hacking / financial crime stuff, into stupid counter-terror campaigns. This whole mess is really a permutation of white-collar crime.

They haven't sent a single greater-than-pawn level obvious fraudulent white collar criminal to prison in like a decade. They catch a couple hackers running large creditcard schemes but they haven't done jack about the industrial espionage, which as you note is going 'all the while.'

I am mainly just sad that all this context is lost, the one primary thing feds are good at is 'making an example' and making sure that it appears to be a broad enough example that they are getting to the core of the matter.

% "Every morning, I get up and look through the 'Forbes' list of the richest people in America. If I'm not there, I go to work" -- Robert Orben