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Comment: Re: Eh? (Score 1) 102

by IamTheRealMike (#47522441) Attached to: Internet Explorer Vulnerabilities Increase 100%

Did YOU look at the graph? The bars are comparing all of 2013 against the first half of 2014 (obviously, as the second half is in the future). So the fact that IE already matched last year's record is where the 100% figure comes from - it's another way to say "doubled". Unless the second half of 2014 has a lower exploit rate then the conclusion will be correct.

Comment: Re:Privacy is dead (Score 3, Insightful) 159

by IamTheRealMike (#47514657) Attached to: Privacy Lawsuit Against Google Rests On Battery Drain Claims

The same exact reasoning to justify TSA

They're incomparable. TSA is mandated by governments, you have no choice in the matter. Using a particular brand of smartphone is not. You are free to use a smartphone that doesn't use Google services and indeed are free to buy a Nexus 5 and then say "no" to the billion and one "trade data for feature?" prompts that appear when switched on the first time. No government goon is going to step in and insist that you send all your data to Google.

In fact, if you would prefer a smartphone that has a different data/features tradeoff then - conveniently! - Google provides a rather good open source operating system for free that you can use to build one. If others feel the same way you do you can even sell them without paying Google a dime.

Comment: Re:popular online privacy tool Tor (Score 1) 50

Depends how you define "very popular" I guess. The most popular way to bypass state-level censorship in the Arab world and elsewhere is a product called HotSpot Shield. When Turkey blocked Twitter some time ago, HSS experienced 1000% growth and reached 1.1 million installs in the iOS App Store alone within only four days, with 800,000 regular users.

In contrast Tor went from 30,000 to 40,000 "direct connects" from Turkey.

HSS doesn't get much press in the geek world as it's just a plain old VPN run by a company in California that inserts ads into people's web pages to pay for the bandwidth costs. But usage wise it utterly dominates Tor.

Comment: Re:"Develop" or "Instigate the development of"? (Score 1) 129

by IamTheRealMike (#47501649) Attached to: Snowden Seeks To Develop Anti-Surveillance Technologies

Nothing I have read about Snowden indicates that he is actually some sort of uber-hacker

Except the stuff about how a 29 year old completely pwnd the NSA, probably the most technically sophisticated part of the US Government there is?

Sheesh. Your standards are high. What would it take, exactly?

Additionally, just because you have read nothing about his programming skills doesn't mean he has none. He once mentioned finding XSS holes in some CIA app so apparently he is good enough to do that.

Comment: Re:New SSL root certificate authority (Score 1) 129

by IamTheRealMike (#47501583) Attached to: Snowden Seeks To Develop Anti-Surveillance Technologies

There are already plenty of CA's in countries that are not under US jurisdiction. However, so far the CA's that issued bad certs were all outside the USA, and appear to have only done so because they got hacked and not because they were e.g. forced to by court order.

Unless you have a magical solution to hacking I don't think your new root CA would solve much.

Additionally, citation needed for "routine man in the middle". SSL MITM has been studied by academics at scale. They did not find evidence of much. Governments don't need to MITM SSL for as long as users browse non-SSLd sites like Slashdot and browser exploits exist.

Comment: Re:lol (Score 0) 665

by IamTheRealMike (#47497231) Attached to: Russian Government Edits Wikipedia On Flight MH17

try googletranslating [] - ukrainian army detains 23 terrorists. somehow all 23 turn out to be citizens of the russian federation.

That page is merely reporting a press release from the Ukrainian government in Kiev. Are you suggesting we should treat everything they say as factually true?

let's bisect the other thing you said - "at most Russia is supplying weapons to them".
"at most". as if they were given bows and arrows. they get armoured vehicles. they get... tanks. they get bloody sam systems that can reach targets up to 25km.

Yes. That's what I said. Perhaps this is a language issue.

Whatever is happening in Ukraine it is not a full-blown invasion by Russia in the "classical" style that Iraq or Afghanistan were. That would be far more obvious. It seems to be much more similar to what's been happening in Syria where the west has been supplying weapons, training and expertise to anti-Assad groups there. If you were to say the west has "at most been supplying weapons and training to the Syrian rebels" you would be correct, given that (fortunately) Syria was not invaded by a foreign army.

Comment: Re:lol (Score -1, Troll) 665

by IamTheRealMike (#47497187) Attached to: Russian Government Edits Wikipedia On Flight MH17

Not exactly. There is a distinct difference between a soldier and a combatant. A soldier is trained and is a member of a standing military. The separatists can at best be described as "irregulars", or insurgents or rebels if you want to go with slightly more charged terminology.

Yes, really? With that definition it'd be impossible for a new military to ever be created, because anyone who joins and fights with one is not joining a standing army therefore cannot be soldiers. That is obviously nonsense, it must be possible for someone to be a soldier in a newly formed army, which is what it looks like is happening here.

Additionally, you claim that the fighters in Donetsk cannot be soldiers because soldiers are trained, and then immediately claim they're receiving training from Russia. So which is it?

And given the fact that the missiles were launched from inside territory controlled by the rebelsis a very important detail. Why would the Ukrainians have anti-air equipment deployed in an area they do not control, against an enemy with no air power?

You're quite right - it probably was the separatists. This does not change the accuracy of the Wikipedia edit that's being discussed, because unless/until the separatists win, they are still Ukrainians.

Although I'd note that given the amount of bullshit emanating from all sides in this conflict it's hard to really know anything about what's going on. The area of Ukraine that's in revolt is next to the Russian border, which is exactly where you'd expect the Ukrainian military to have had lots of soldiers and equipment stationed. Missiles might have been trucked over the Russian border, or they might simply have been there already. The separatists might be being trained by Russians (this would be unsurprising and not exactly unprecedented - see how the USA supported rebels in Syria), or alternatively they might be operating the equipment without really knowing what they're doing - indeed, having no clue what you're targeting would be rather indicative of not being properly trained, no? Or perhaps they're being trained by people who are ethnically Russian but lived in Ukraine at the time of the rebellion, or one of many other more complex cases that won't neatly fit into the "Putin fired the missiles himself" story the west is busy pushing.

All we can say for sure is that whatever you read about this incident is going to be full-blown propaganda, and should be treated as such.

Comment: lol (Score -1) 665

by IamTheRealMike (#47496751) Attached to: Russian Government Edits Wikipedia On Flight MH17

I don't think Russian state media should be editing Wikipedia entries especially not on matters of current affairs.

But still, interpreted literally the new statement is far more factually correct and unbiased than what it replaced. Whoever shot down the plane, they were "soldiers" or fighters of some variety and almost certainly can be described as Ukrainian, given that everyone seems to agree that the fighters are actually eastern Ukrainians and at most Russia is supplying weapons to them.

The original text, on the other hand, more or less exactly sums up western/west Ukrainian line despite the obvious abuse of the word terrorist to mean "rebel fighter" and the [citation needed] assertion about who did it and the source of the weapons.

Comment: Re:Time to get rid of Tor (Score 3, Interesting) 122

There is no need to get rid of Tor: in theory, Tor could have a "hidden service policy" mechanism not much different to the exit policy mechanism. HS Policies would allow a node operator to state that they aren't willing to act as an introduction point for a list of hidden services (or point to lists maintained elsewhere to stop fast-flux type behaviour).

Tor already accepts that not all relay operators will want to support all kinds of behaviour and that some kinds of traffic can be abusive, that's why they implement exit policies which allow exits to ban port and IP ranges. Taking this philosophy to hidden services seems like the next natural step. After all, Tor volunteers are ultimately acting as human shields for other people's anonymous behaviour. Requiring them to shield everything just restricts the number of people who would be willing to donate bandwidth to general privacy but are not interested in enabling botnets.

Comment: Re:This obsession with everything in RAM needs to (Score 2) 160

by IamTheRealMike (#47494755) Attached to: Linux Needs Resource Management For Complex Workloads

Not sure what you're getting at, but the Azul collector is well known for pulling off apparently magical GC performance. They do it with a lot of very clever computer science that involves, amongst other things, modifications to the kernel. I believe they also used to use custom chips with extended instruction sets designed to interop well with their custom JVM. Not sure if they still do that. The result is that they can do things like GC a 20 gigabyte heap in a handful of milliseconds. GC doesn't have to suck.

Comment: That's Ripple (Score 3, Informative) 100

by IamTheRealMike (#47488795) Attached to: New Digital Currency Bases Value On Reputation

Ripple, before the name was bought by a Silicon Valley company and changed into something a bit different, was more or less exactly this.

There's a video on the original web page that explains this concept quite nicely. You could set up debt relationships between people and denominated in any currency, including ones you invent on the fly like hours of The Real Mike's time. However it never really took off in a big way, perhaps because it was rather complicated, and bootstrapping such a system from the internet (full of strangers who don't know each other, don't trust each other and may not even exist) is presumably very difficult.

However if the concept sounds interesting you could do worse than check out the original thinking by Ryan Fugger behind Ripple. Satoshi once told me that Ripple was interesting because it was the only system that does something with trust other than centralise it.

Comment: Re:Shitpost is shit (Score 4, Insightful) 272

Yes the question posed is ridiculous, akin to asking how long is a piece of string.

Regardless, the submitter has created a space in which we can choose either to flame him/her (achieving nothing) or we can choose to have an interesting and useful debate on things like how companies slow down as they scale, whether there should be mandatory size limits on companies a la KSR's Red Mars trilogy, to what extent this move is an indictment of the Ballmer era, to what extent Microsoft's competitors i.e. Google might be suffering over-staffing and so on. Many interesting topics.

So. Who's first?

Mr. Cole's Axiom: The sum of the intelligence on the planet is a constant; the population is growing.