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Comment: DING DING DING!!! (Score 5, Insightful) 572

You, sir (or ma'am), are doing it right. This is precisely the thing that gets me so mad at companies today, that they view these issues as an IT problem, not an HR problem. So they spend hundreds of thousands of dollars (sometimes millions) in hardware, software, salaries, support contracts, and lost time when shit breaks, just so that management 1) won't have to do their jobs--you know, managing people, and 2) will have plausible deniability when someone does do something stupid. ("It's not my fault for not making sure my workers were working on what they were supposed to and not violating company policy; IT should have blocked that site!!!")

It's refreshing to see someone who actually gets where company policies should actually be enforced and where responsibility really ought to lie when there are gaps. Thank you!

Comment: SSL Interception (Score 5, Interesting) 572

Yes, it's actually extremely common. Google "SSL Interception", as that's the name of the feature that is advertised on hardware/software that performs this function.

This is why I never browse private web sites on work hardware. You simply do not know how they've mangled the machine, what all it is revealing or to whom. (That's right, most large companies actually outsource security, so all of your private account numbers and passwords are going to third parties that you don't know and never will, third parties who have been indemnified and are completely immune to any kind of action or recourse from you if they screw up.) If I want to browse the web, I use a VPN connection to my house and my own personal laptop. I don't use my work smartphone for Facebook or personal email, I have my own personal phone using my own provider. When I'm working from home and VPNed into the office, I don't use my personal workstation for any work stuff, except as a VirtualBox host for a work VM, which my company has altered through group policy and direct installation of software to be configured how they want.

It's a shame that in today's work environment we have to worry about such things, but if you think the NSA is bad about spying on you, it's small potatoes compared to what your own company does. Never trust your company to just be innocently looking for malware or other intrusion detection means. Never install any software or services on your personal equipment from your company, no matter how much more convenient it will make your life. (This includes, for example, accepting elevated permissions to connect to your work email on your personal phone.) Always assume that they're watching you, looking for anything that can be used to fire you, cancel your severance, or extort whatever they want from you, whether you're just a paean on the low rung of the corporate ladder or the CEO.

I've worked very closely with both the network and security people in a large multinational corporation, and I've seen firsthand the kinds of things they do. It ain't pretty. I've seen people leave because they have moral qualms with the kind of monitoring that goes on, and people screwed because something innocent that everyone does was turned into a major issue. I cannot emphasize this enough; never, ever, ever mix your personal life with your work life, especially when it comes to communications and technology.

Comment: Re:Could someone answer this? (Score 1) 520

by KingSkippus (#46324303) Attached to: Netflix Blinks, Will Pay Comcast For Network Access

Good. The exits are clearly marked. Door. Ass. All that shit.

Actually, you're the one who should be going if you don't understand the basic concept that the Supreme Court's job is to interpret how the laws are applied and what they mean, not just in the historical context in which they're written, but in the context of our ever-changing modern society; that laws are meaningless on paper, that only how they're enforced and upheld lends them any power. It's people like you who don't understand that simple concept--in spite of the founding fathers making it explicitly clear that they understood the need for what they were doing to continually be expanded upon and interpreted as times change--that are responsible for a large number of the problems in this country today.

You're the modern-day equivalent of a flat-earther. So yeah, good riddance to you. Or else good luck when you get arrested and try the "my rights are only subject to MY interpretation and I don't recognize this court's authority!" defense.

Comment: How to play for the tie (Score 4, Informative) 412

by KingSkippus (#46157337) Attached to: Audience Jeers Contestant Who Uses Game Theory To Win At 'Jeopardy'

I'm sorry, I didn't realize that folks weren't more familiar with Jeopardy!.

Normally if a player is in the lead by more than twice as much as the next closest person (that is, a guaranteed win), he will bet an amount that, if he misses the question and the second-place person answers it correctly, will leave him or her in the lead by a dollar. For example, if Alice has $15,000, Bob has $7,000, and Carol as $4,000, Alice will bet $999. If Alice misses the question and Bob gets it correct, Alice will end up with $14,001 and Bob will end up with $14,000, thus securing Alice the win.

To play for the tie instead, Alice would bet $1,000. Thus if she answers incorrectly and Bob answers correctly, they will both have $14,000. Both win the cash prize instead of the consolation prize(s), and both come back on tomorrow's show. If Alice is hardcore nice, she might even miss the question deliberately (yes, that means she'll be foregoing $2,000 extra in prize money) since that will net Bob $14,000 and she'll be bringing someone into the game tomorrow that she's relatively confident she can beat.

If Alice does not have the game locked up, then normally she would bet just enough so that, if she and Bob both answer correctly, she would end up one dollar ahead. For example, if Alice has $15,000, Bob has $10,000, and Carol has $3,000, Alice would bet $5,001, assuming that Bob will bet the entire amount. If both answer the question correctly, then Alice will end up with $20,001 and Bob with $20,000. If both answer incorrectly, Bob will likely end up with something close to $0, and Alice will end up with $9,999. If Alice answers incorrectly and Bob answers correctly, then unless Bob really screwed the pooch on his betting strategy, he will win and there's nothing Alice can do about it. (Which, incidentally, I have seen before.)

However, if Alice is playing for the tie, she will bet $5,000. That way, if she and Bob both answer correctly, they will both win $20,000, and again, she will carry a player she's likely to beat into the next game.

Obviously, that's not the whole story, because you might adjust your betting strategy based on where the third place person is to ensure that you capture at least second place, and sometimes you tweak the amount so that if everyone blows it, you come out ahead. Or sometimes you might do something irrational if you have some ulterior reason for it; for example, Alice might bet more on the question if it is about 18th Century Authors and she happens to be a literature professor with extensive knowledge in that field. But still, hopefully that paints a good enough picture to understand what "betting for the tie" means, versus trying to win outright.

Comment: Play for the tie (Score 5, Insightful) 412

by KingSkippus (#46155231) Attached to: Audience Jeers Contestant Who Uses Game Theory To Win At 'Jeopardy'

I've wondered for years why more players don't play for the tie instead of the win. For one thing, doesn't that mean that the person who would have been in second place but who tied instead also gets to keep their money? Seems to me like it's kind of a dick move to not play for the tie, unless you just don't like the person for some reason. For another, wouldn't it be to your advantage to take someone with you into the next game that you already know you can beat? I mean, I'd feel safer going up against Steve from Montana who I was a few thousand ahead of going into Final Jeopardy than risk facing Watson and Ken Jennings on tomorrow's show.

Comment: Re:Commercials (Score 1) 347

by KingSkippus (#46149211) Attached to: Super Bowl Ads: Worth the Price Or Waste of Time?

WTBS went national on December 17, 1976. Nickelodeon dates back to December 1, 1977. ESPN started broadcasting September 7, 1979. USA Network was broadcasting nationally via satellite by the late 70s. CNN brought us the 24-hours news cycle on June 1, 1980. MTV told us that Video Killed the Radio Star on August 1, 1981. 1982 brought us CNN2 (later Headline News, on January 1), The Weather Channel (May 2), and a slew of other ad-supported channels.

While HBO was started in 1972, and Showtime in 1976, Cinemax started in 1980. The Disney Channel, originally a premium add-on channel, launched in 1983. Those were the only ad-free premium channels in the early 80s, as Starz didn't launch until 1994.

So I don't know what all of these "movie channels of some sort" you remember in the early 1980s, but there were only three mainstream ones out there, four if you count Disney's launch in '83. Meanwhile most other popular cable channels such as ESPN, CNN, MTV, and various "superstations" with advertising were staples of cable television line-ups by then, as well as the national broadcast networks, plus some local access channels that, as I said, broadcast almost nothing but commercials..

Now, I suppose you could argue that C-SPAN and maybe some local religious stations (many of which also ran ads) that no one watched were really what made the "good ol' days" of cable television the good ol' days, but even accounting for those, I still stand by my assertion that, with very few exceptions of possibly some small cable providers that didn't provide many national cable networks at any given time, cable television has always been predominantly ad-supported. Again, you are mixing "most ad-free channels were on cable" with "most channels on cable were ad-free." The former is true, but the latter, although a common misconception, is far from it--a fact that is easily verified by looking at any cable channel line-up from the 1970s or 1980s (or if you can find material back that far, even the 1960s). Insisting that it is only shows a very selective and inaccurate memory.

Comment: Re:Commercials (Score 4, Informative) 347

by KingSkippus (#46140107) Attached to: Super Bowl Ads: Worth the Price Or Waste of Time?

You mean, like subscription TV service, aka, cable or satellite? I vaguely remember when our house got hooked up for cable about 30-ish years ago and the promise* then was that the cable-based channels would be mostly ad-free since we were paying up front. That lasted more or less 10-15 years I'd say (if you give networks a pass on promos for their own lineups).

Then you're misremembering. There's a huge difference between ad-free networks being mostly on cable (the actual historical situation) and cable being mostly ad-free networks (how many people incorrectly remember the "good ol' days" of cable). Cable television has always had advertisements, barring a few notable premium channels such as HBO and, of course, public television stations. Many channels were nothing but ads, such as home shopping channels and local access stations that ran infomercials for something like 20 out of 24 hours a day.

Originally, cable television was merely a way to get television into areas that were unable to receive broadcast signals, thanks to geography or other factors, and carried only the networks, which had ads. Eventually some "superstations" rose up that were only available via cable out-of-market, the first of which was Ted Turner's WTCG (later WTBS) and eventually stations like WGN and WOR, and all of those had ads. Later, almost all cable-only channels such as ESPN, MTV, and CNN have run ads since their inception.

What you're mostly likely remembering is the commercials for specific premium channels like HBO, Cinemax, Showtime, Starz, and Disney (prior to 1997) that advertised that their channels were ad-free, but these were the exception and commanded extra fees in addition to your normal cable bill, not true of cable television in general.

Comment: Re:Learn to freaken drive. (Score 4, Interesting) 723

by KingSkippus (#46111297) Attached to: Atlanta Gambled With Winter Storm and Lost


You have no idea how frustrating it is as a Southerner to be constantly condescended upon because of our supposedly lousy driving skills. I don't care HOW skilled you are at driving on snow or ice, when you crest an ice-covered hill with a curve at the bottom, even if you're driving 1 MPH, you're going to go off the road or crash into the curb (or the car) at the bottom.

Every time I see one of these "lrn2drv" smug posts, I want to invite that person to come on down and drive on a road that is completely untreated in a car that is completely unequipped for snow/ice driving. In this case, I'd love to get them to try it in the middle of an Atlanta rush hour that was as popped out on steroids as it has ever been in the history of the city. Yes, we're not used to driving on ice. Yes, there are some fools who do it wrong. But I've seen people who are the most careful of drivers creeping along at a snail's pace still have wrecks because, believe it or not, when your roads have no snow or ice for 999 out of 1000 days in a row and no one has prepared for the eventuality that they might, and your government is run by "don't spend money for any reason"/"let's err against the side of safety" idiots, shit happens.

Comment: Re:SSL? (Score 2) 324

by KingSkippus (#45531577) Attached to: Jury Finds Newegg Infringed Patent, Owes $2.3 Million

How can that company not be a patent troll?

I don't think that there's any doubt that they are. Unfortunately, and I think most people don't really grasp this, being a patent troll in the United States is not just legal, it's extremely lucrative. That's why, while I certainly hope that Newegg eventually successfully appeals this case and continues defending against patent trolls, what we really need is better legislation to make all of this shit illegal.

Comment: Re:Good advertising? (Score 4, Insightful) 324

by KingSkippus (#45531365) Attached to: Jury Finds Newegg Infringed Patent, Owes $2.3 Million

NewEgg stands up to patent trolls.

Amazon... well, one-click.

This. Exactly. I'd rather pay Newegg a few bucks more knowing that those bucks will be spent fighting patent trolls than saving a few bucks at Amazon knowing that the reason they're able to offer prices a few bucks lower is because they sued some other company out of existence for having the audacity to put a button on their web page that charges your credit card and checks you out in one action.

Comment: Re:Priorities much? (Score 5, Informative) 312

Not surprisingly, the submitter grossly misrepresented what was said. In TFA, the Arial font thing was just a couple of lines in a much more troubling string of rants, stuff like:

- "it’s always awkward when I see one of my pervs in the parking lot after a hearing"
- he (the hearing examiner) “likes taking motions under advisement, but gets greater satisfaction denying them”
- On November 20, 2008, the day of the plaintiff’s hearing, the following comment was posted during working hours: “it’s always a mistake when people testify, because they get destroyed in cross examination”
- On that same day, the day of the plaintiff’s hearing, the hearing examiner also posted the following (apparently with reference to a different sex offender): he (the examiner) “hopes this guy doesn’t show up!!” which was followed up with “Tyson Lynch says yay!! He didn’t show up!”

...And so on. This is someone who is supposed to be fair and impartial, and the guy clearly has issues with the people he has a duty to work with.

So yeah, if I had a hearing before the guy that went south, I'd be trying to have it overturned also. I hope that the guy is fired and the people who did have hearings before him get new hearings.

+ - Abandoned City of Heroes Fans Kickstart Successor-> 1

Submitted by KingSkippus
KingSkippus (799657) writes "Last December 1, NCsoft shut down the long-running City of Heroes superhero MMORPG. Undaunted, a group of fans formed Missing Worlds Media, a new studio to develop City of Titans. The new game is a spiritual successor with original art, stories, and code. A Kickstarter project to raise funds for software and hardware for the mostly volunteer team of developers and artists reached its funding level less than six days later, and the total is currently approaching stretch goals. Missing Worlds Media is currently targeting a November 2015 release date for City of Titans."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:bootloader still locked? (Score 1) 88

by KingSkippus (#44950047) Attached to: Amazon Launches Kindle Fire HDX Tablets

That logic would be fine if all the OP wanted to buy is just a proprietary Amazon front-end, which means that the value of the device is significantly lower than what would justify the price. But assuming that he wants a "tablet" in the traditional sense of the word, a general-purpose device that he can customize to suit his particular needs that can be obtained from other companies at comparable prices and that can also run the same Amazon-available applications but also other stuff as well, then he is correct in that he should continue to avoid these.

The superior man understands what is right; the inferior man understands what will sell. -- Confucius