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Comment: Re:I wonder (Score 1) 154

by Koreantoast (#46486951) Attached to: A Look at the NSA's Most Powerful Internet Attack Tool
That's a silly statement. They're government bureaucrats. At least in the United States, you never join the bureaucracy if your goal is to make money. Even contracting for the government, while better paying than direct government employment, still pales compared to more lucrative areas of the economy, especially for the skill sets we're talking about.

Comment: Retraining Won't Be Enough for Unemployed Miners (Score 3, Insightful) 712

I'm REALLY curious as to what they expect to replace the coal mining business with in the middle of rural West Virginia. Even assuming you could retrain all those workers, that simply leaves an entire army of now skilled workers sitting in towns that have had their economy completely decimated by the elimination of coal. One doesn't simply regenerate a brand new, magic economy there from scratch. Even something as basic as building a new factory, say a solar panel factory, would require not just the cost of building the factory, but the infrastructure to support said factory (roads, water, power, rail links, etc.), and $50B is not going to cover the cost of doing that for 87,000 workers.

Comment: Better Question: Why Did It Take the PRC this Long (Score 1) 142

Yes, just in case you haven't been following all the coverage from the last three or four days, the United States has been providing a large amount of satellite data, even leveraging their missile launch detection system to search for possible explosions. The more interesting question is why it took the Chinese this long to provide satellite imagery to search for a plane full of primarily their own citizenry in its own region.

Comment: Will They Monitor Congress & Their Staff? (Score 1) 186

This program is probably focused on members of the bureaucracy, but I wonder if they're going to cover another very significant group of government officials with security clearances: Members of Congress and their staffs. A lot of your leaks happen over on Capitol Hill after all. Then again, I'm going to take a guess that they will very vocally and aggressively oppose this action and play the separation of powers card to shield themselves from this new effort.

Comment: Sophisticated tools - "Russian Stuxnet" Ouroboros (Score 1) 256

by Koreantoast (#46430445) Attached to: In Ukraine, Cyber War With Russia Heating Up
The Financial Times [Paywall] is reporting that a highly sophisticated cyberweapon known as Ouroboros is being used to infect, monitor and potentially attack Ukrainian computer networks including government systems. Forensics mark it as being Russian developed, and the article compares it to Stuxnet in terms of sophistication and capability (though it is not related to that specific software). Websites are small potatoes, nothing more than spray paint on a wall. This appears to be more more like explosives, designed to take out targeted infrastructure.

Comment: Why Glasses vs. Cell Phones or Cameras (Score 1) 921

by Koreantoast (#46359475) Attached to: Woman Attacked In San Francisco Bar For Wearing Google Glass
I think an important distinction needs to be made about the difference between Google Glasses versus cellphones, cameras and other more traditional recording devices. With the latter, it's relatively obvious if someone is recording you: the item's lenses are pointed at you. If the cellphone is in their pocket or angled at my feet, it's easy to see it's not pointed at me. It's also easy for me to verify if they are recording me on a cellphone or not, just simply flip the thing around and take a look. With Google Glasses, I have no idea if a person looking at me is simply looking or is actually recording. There's no indication, and it's not quick to spot check; they have to go through the process of actually removing the glasses and showing me. It creates uncertainty on whether or not I'm being recorded, and therefore, creates unease.

That being said, this event seems to be just as much about the whole Techie vs. "Traditional" San Francisco debate which is a whole different can of worms.

Comment: Problem is Employee Leaves After Training (Score 1) 491

by Koreantoast (#46349143) Attached to: Do We Really Have a Shortage of STEM Workers?
Companies have scaled back on on-the-job training because the moment they invest heavily in an employee, said employee will jump ship to another firm. A lot of times too, it's not even for more money, it's for a more prestigious company, hotter product, etc. Why bother trying to train in house talent when they're going to jump ship? Better to just look for someone who is qualified to do the job from the get go.

Comment: Infrastructure, Education Underfunding Myth (Score 1) 506

by Koreantoast (#46334293) Attached to: US War Machine Downsizing?
First, I'm going to say I'm all for reductions in military spending. No objections drawing down the military machine and redeploying those funds to more productive uses for the economy.

However, I do want to address what I view as the misinterpretation that the United States is somehow starving infrastructure and education spending. Contrary to popular belief, the US dumps huge amounts of resources into both. The US spends 3.3% of its GDP on infrastructure, on par with nations like Canada and Germany. In education, the US spend $1,000B a year in education spending, ~$200B more a year on education than on all combined defense, veteran and civil defense spending. I don't think the question for the United States is whether or not the government spends sufficient resources, but it's more a question of how those resources are allocated and spent. It's a question of geographic and socioeconomic distribution as well as effectiveness of spending.

Comment: Just Supporting Already Strong Tech Cities (Score 3, Interesting) 172

by Koreantoast (#46290029) Attached to: Google Fiber Pondering 9 New Metro Areas
It's good to see some real competition, but it's disappointing that most of the locations chosen are simply further upgrading areas that already have a large tech presence. In some ways, it almost feels like it's further growing the gap between technologically advanced cities and the rest of the country.

Comment: Re:They're finally going to do something. (Score 1) 325

by Koreantoast (#46280741) Attached to: N. Korea Could Face Prosecution For 'Crimes Against Humanity'
This is true, but I would add that there is a real calculus that the Chinese are doing, and if North Korea's new leadership pushes too hard, the Chinese government may find that they'd be better off "forcefully advocating" for new North Korean leadership. The nuclear weapons and recent violent altercations are already making the Chinese uneasy, especially since they give China's neighbors more excuses to pour money into military upgrades... upgrades that can also be used to contest Chinese military supremacy in the region. The Kim Jong Un's recent purges of pro-Chinese factions in the government isn't exactly currying favor either.

Comment: Non-Interventionist is BS; China no Different (Score 2) 325

by Koreantoast (#46279575) Attached to: N. Korea Could Face Prosecution For 'Crimes Against Humanity'
No, it's China's view that the DPRK's internal affairs are none of its business until China feels that the DPRK is no longer worth propping up. China is out for China's interest, and they are more than happy to interfere when it's in their national interest, no different than any other major global power. They may not currently have the force projection capabilities that other nations had, but just the sheer number of weapons they've shipped during the PRC's short history to pro-Chinese insurgencies and governments shows that they are not above this game. Perhaps the most blatant was the punitive campaign they launched against Vietnam in 1979, leaving tens of thousands of people dead and "scorched earth" in the northern half of Vietnam, all because the Vietnamese had the audacity to stop the massacres of the pro-PRC Khmer Rouge.

Yet for now, as much of a headache that the DPRK is for China, they put up with them because all of the other options are much less desirable for China (anarchy from regime collapse, war on its frontier, millions of refugees).

Comment: Arbitrary - USA Still about 2006, 2011 Rankings (Score 3, Insightful) 357

by Koreantoast (#46271301) Attached to: US Plunges To 46th In World Press Freedom Index
When one bothers to actually look at the data, the rank for the United States is still higher than its ranking in 2006, 2007 and 2011. Since 2002, the United States press freedom has bounced back and forth between the 20s and 50s. This is not to say that there isn't merit to the deficits in press freedom that Reporters Without Borders points out; there are very legitimate concerns being raised about recent efforts by the current administration to crack down on leakers and whistleblowers. Yet because Reporters Without Borders is regularly changing their methodology, you can't really use the data to make a true comparison of any nation's change in rank beyond very broad generalizations. Here's a good story in the Washington Post that makes this point.

Comment: They Didn't Even Humor Him with an Insulting Offer (Score 1) 218

What makes this particular case even crazier is that they didn't bother to humor him with the sort of token, small dollar amount that most, more established companies will offer when this sort of thing arises (and in this case, the photographer might have actually accepted). Nope, they went straight for the lawsuit.

+ - Under Armour-Lockheed Designed Suit Blamed for Poor US Speedskating Perfomance-> 1

Submitted by Koreantoast
Koreantoast (527520) writes "The United States surprisingly poor performance in speedskating, despite strong performances in recent World Cup events, has been blamed in part on an untested speedskating suit. The Mach 39, designed through a joint venture between Under Armour and Lockheed Martin, was supposed to provide Team USA with a high tech advantage, using advanced fluid dynamic models and dimpled surface to disrupt air flow and improve comfort. Instead, performances have been disastrous thus far, with athletes going as far as modifying their suits at the Olympics to try and reverse their fortunes. The suits have caused enough concerns that US Speedskating is taking the unusual step of seeking special dispensation from International Skating Union to ditch the high tech suits and switch back to their old uniforms. Teams are normally required to keep the same equipment through the entire Games. Insert jokes and comparisons to Lockheed's more famous product, the JSF, here."
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A LISP programmer knows the value of everything, but the cost of nothing. -- Alan Perlis