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Comment: Re:Wow... (Score 1, Interesting) 345

by John.Banister (#48208467) Attached to: The Classic Control Panel In Windows May Be Gone
You could stay with Win 7 until they stop doing security updates, and then hide it from the scary internet inside a virtual machine that has gpu passthrough (nvidia vgx or amd vdi) and is defined not to have a network adapter. Windows will run your games and never know that the world outside has moved on.

Comment: Re:Alternative headline (Score 1) 429

by John.Banister (#48117197) Attached to: BitHammer, the BitTorrent Banhammer

[ ... ]

and I promise you that there are simply not that many people who desperately need an emergency .iso download of CentOS or Ubuntu away from home.

[ ... ]

I lost count of the times I've had to duck into a rural/small-town MickeyD's or coffee shop because the stupid employer-issued hotspot/3g/4g device didn't have enough bars to get a decent connection.

These areas where the population density is too low for good cellular data coverage are also places adjacent to where cable and dsl availability drops out owing to too few customers per mile. This is where you can expect people to come in to MickeyD's for that .iso download from time to time because the internet there is better than is possible at home.

Comment: Not just a lack of criminal penalties (Score 1) 176

by John.Banister (#47561135) Attached to: Senate Bill Would Ban Most Bulk Surveillance
I read through this bill, and not only do I find a lack of criminal penalties, I also don't find a means of independent confirmation of compliance, especially considering that these agencies have lied to Congress in the past. And, at the end of it, this bill extends the Patriot Act another two years from 2015 to 2017.

I like the idea of having regular attempts at declassifying FISA court decisions, but it says "where possible" and doesn't say who gets to define what's possible. I have a feeling that "if the public learns of this, they'll hate us and we might lose funding" would make declassification impossible, and "if this guy's defense learns about this, they might actually be able to defend him and we want him imprisoned" would also make declassification impossible. I didn't see a provision to ensure that the people who decide about the declassification are not people invested in the secret activity who would use the decision making ability to obtain outcomes in a manner bypassing the legal and political systems.

Comment: Re:... using non-Windows devices. (Score 1) 112

by John.Banister (#47555207) Attached to: Samsung Delays Tizen Phone Launch
I'm pretty low end, and I don't want any of those things. What I would like is LibreOffice Base where it's possible for numeric fields to be dialable. That way I can input 1500 contacts and make & save queries that generate custom phone books for me. Other apps I actually use on my phone now are: the one to record my phone calls, text messaging, easypark, gnuchess, and Garnet, the Palm OS emulator where I have my 1500 contacts and BTZS ExpoDev.

Comment: Re:Great... (Score 2) 582

by John.Banister (#47545735) Attached to: Satellite Images Show Russians Shelling Ukraine
I read the article, which was interesting. However, I don't feel any particular shock or outrage. The combination of greed, petroleum resources and fighting has been going on for a long time. East Timor provides a fine example. Biden's kid doing lawyering for Ukrainian frackers doesn't seem particularly significant, although I'm sure they intend to milk that situation for all they can get. That the US Mainstream Media doesn't have big reports on this doesn't come across to me as a result of they're being run by some conspiracy, it's because giving a damn about Biden's kid's job isn't a strong sentiment in the US.

Comment: Re:And then the next step is... (Score 2) 186

I've seen some US laws have the same problems with the internet. There was that whole business about not being able to export public key cryptography where everyone just downloaded it from a non US server. There were (are?) a bunch of US pornography laws (no depicting a woman having sex while she's tied up, not depicting household objects used as a dildo, etc) that don't matter anymore because no one outside the US will enforce them. However there's been no problem getting every country to support enforcement of laws against child pornography or bomb making instructions. I expect that some of the cyberbullying laws that some localities in the US have made would find difficulty with enforcement if someone attempted to apply them to a person in another state in the US, much less to someone in another country.

In general, I think that when countries disagree about what sort of internet activities are permitted, either the least restrictive choice will be predominant, or some sort of filtering (like that for which China is famous) will be implemented.

Comment: Re:Slippery Slope (Score 3, Informative) 186

If Google is censoring their results, they could do so no just on the basis of which version of Google receives the request, but on the basis of the requesting IP address. That would be a showing of making the attempt to comply, and Google could argue that people who make the effort to use a VPN are like people who get on a train and leave the EU. It's up to the EU to treat with the countries at the other end of the train ride if they want their same law to apply in those places as well.

Meanwhile, someone who isn't Google and doesn't have offices in the EU will surely make up a page of links to this information. If the page generates traffic, someone will pay for add space there.

Comment: Re:must they be despicable? (Score 1) 200

No, it's a special culling process. They start at the bottom, firing any personnel who actually show up at your house on time, and then they use the number of angry customer letters per month as the metric for low level promotion. At the higher levels, it's more about demoralization.

Comment: Re:Soooo .. (Score 2) 98

by John.Banister (#47536327) Attached to: Russia Posts $110,000 Bounty For Cracking Tor's Privacy
You might want to check with these guys about promises to pay. I talked to a talented Russian once who told me that you get promises of money before you produce results and promises to let you live if you go away quietly after you produce results. Of course, if you're sufficiently talented at interpersonal politics, you may convince someone that they will see more benefit in the long run by cultivating a relationship with you now, but this money doesn't relate so much to their initial promise as to your negotiating skill.

Nothing is more admirable than the fortitude with which millionaires tolerate the disadvantages of their wealth. -- Nero Wolfe