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Comment Re:Question for Bernie Sanders (Score 1) 244

Probably not going to complain about "the descendants of the same ones that crucified Christ" dominating the world as Chavez did.

Probably. And he may even be nicer to Israel than Chavez was and than his own core constituency are. But that's not something, that has much bearing on economic and other internal policies... And it is those policies — not the anti-Semitism and not the anti-Israel denunciations — that stalled Venezuela's economy (even while oil was still expensive), destroyed its infrastructure, and quintupled the murder rate and other violent crime.

Comment TL;DR version (Score 1) 134 is the summary chart, showing the standard deviations of the d20s by brand/model.
(Lower is better)

By that review:
Crystal Castle the worst
Wiz dice next-worst
Koplow and Chessex about the same, with Koplow averaging slightly better, but one of the five Chessex dice was substantially better than all the Koplows

Gamescience clearly "wins", averaging below 0.1. This is better than ALL the other dice, and all 3 GS dice were individually better than all other dice, aside from the one Chessex exceptionally good die (which still wasn't as good as the best GS die).

Submission + - Phishing Blast Uses Dropbox To Target Hong Kong Journalists (

itwbennett writes: Researchers at FireEye have disclosed an ongoing Phishing campaign targeting pro-democracy media organizations in Hong Kong that's using Dropbox storage services as a command and control (C2) hub, writes CSO's Steve Ragan. 'The attacks are using basic emails trapped with documents that deliver a malware payload called LowBall,' says Ragan. 'LowBall is a basic backdoor that uses a legitimate Dropbox storage account to act as a C2.'

Comment Re: Refugees? Not so much. (Score 1, Informative) 202

It's AGW week. "Climate change refugees" for something that hasn't happened yet is more PC than saying they moved to the USA because it's the "land of opportunity", providing jobs and education, with "chain immigration" policies making it easy to import thousands relatives once the first legal immigrant arrives.


Swallow the Doctor: The Present and Future of Robots Inside Us ( 30

szczys writes: Feynman predicted that we would some day "swallow the doctor" and to some extent that is already happening. There are cameras in pill-form that the patient swallows to monitor the digestive tract, and pacemakers are now inserted via catheter rather than major surgery. The question is: where are we going with robots we can put inside our bodies? Intuitively it seems far away, but there is already an open source platform for capsule robots. Medical devices are where the money's at when it comes to hardware development. We can expect to see a lot of work in the coming years to make the man-machine hybrid something that is much more organic, sprinkled with small tablets of robot.

Comment Re:Is this really as typical as it seems? (Score 2) 118

New technology market deployments go in stages, including the following:
  1) The underlying technology becomes available and financially viable. The window opens.
  2) An explosion of companies introduce competing products and try to capture market share. They are in a race to jump through the window.
  3) There is a shakeout: A handful become the dominant producers and the rest die off or move on to other things. The window has closed.

We've seen this over and over. (Two examples from a few decades back were the explosions of Unix boxes and PC graphics accelerator chips)

IoT applications recently passed stage 1), with the introduction of $1-ish priced, ultra-low-power (batteries last for years), systems-on-a-chip (computer, radio peripheral, miscellaneous sensor and other device interfaces) from TI, Nordic, Dialog, and others. It's in stage 2) now.

In stage 2) there's a race to get to market. Wait too long and your competitors eat your lunch and you die before deploying at all. So PBHs do things like deploy proof-of-concept lab prototypes as products, as soon as they work at all (or even BEFORE they do. B-b ) They figure that implementing a good security architecture up front will make them miss the window, and (if they think that far ahead at all) that they can fix it with upgrades later, after they're established, have financing, adequate staffing, and time to do it right - or at least well enough.

So right now you're seeing the IoT producucts that came out first - which means mostly the ones that either ignored security entirely or haven't gotten it set up right yet. Give it some time and you'll see better security - either from improvements among the early movers or new entrants who took the time to do it right and managed to survive long enough to get to market. Then you'll see a shakeout, as those who got SOMETHING wrong fail in competition with those who got it right.

If we're lucky, one of the "somethings" will be security. But Microsoft's example shows that's not necessarily a given.

In this case, though, the POINT of the product is security, so getting it wrong - visibly - may be a company killer. (I see that, in the wake of the exposure, the company is promising a field upgrade with this issue fixed in about a month. If it does happen, and comes out before the crooks develop and use an exploit, perhaps this company will become another example for the PHBs to point at when they push the engineers for fast schlock rather than slow solid-as-rocks.)

Comment Re:The HELL they can't! (Score 1) 74

Being in the industry, the reason I was given was (1) the electrolyte is very expensive right now

Vanadium pentoxide (98% pure was about $6/lb and falling as of early Oct and hasn't been above $14 in years) and sulphuric acid?

and (2) investors need a demonstration of return.

Always the bottom line. B-)

Comment Re:I'm not surprised (Score 2) 118

90% of all ADT alarms installed use the zipcode as the installer/backdoor access code.
95% of all alarms installed by companies use the house address as the default code for the customer at install time and NEVER have the code changed.

Alarm systems typically are only used for notification to the homeowner that they need to call the insurance company for a claim.

Comment Re:Question for Bernie Sanders (Score 1) 244

Probably because no one knows and/or cares about Chavez and/or his policies?

That's decidedly not true about Senator Sanders' followers. Whether he is a real Socialist or not, plenty of people, who fancy themselves as such follow him. And Chavez was the world's number one Socialist just a few years ago. Indeed, he was once a special guest of the World Social Forum.

So, no, you aren't going to succeed playing "Chavez who?". You yourself have now replied thrice in this thread, and yet can not point at a single thing, Sanders would do differently from Chavez... Figures...

Comment Re:Question for Bernie Sanders (Score 1) 244

Bernie Sanders isn't a socialist.

Must we keep using the labels and stereotypes? I'm about to get triggered...

So asking him about Chavez is entirely irrelevant.

Several people responded in this sub-thread of mine, some of them — multiple times. And yet, not one was willing (or able?) to offer a single policy difference...

Bell Labs Unix -- Reach out and grep someone.