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Comment: Recommendation for ClearOS (Score 2) 193

You could do worse than take a look at http://www.clearfoundation.com/ and the community edition of ClearOS.

In my opinion it provides Cisco-like capability on any old PC you have lying around. That old PC almost certainly has more power and capability than any typical end-user-grade router in the $30 to $120 market.

Disclaimer: I have no relationship with ClearFoundation except that of a user since 2003.

Comment: Suggests Meaning, Yet Lacks Any (Score 1) 458

by Lacrocivious Acropho (#44595565) Attached to: My SSID Is...
I use a made-up word that suggests latin and/or greek roots but actually has no meaning whatsoever. It's amazing how simple it is to create such words and discover that people who should know better will pretend to be familiar with them in conversational context, lest they appear ignorant of something they suspect they should have learned in school.
Mars

4-Billion-Pixel Panorama View From Curiosity Rover 101

Posted by samzenpus
from the take-a-look dept.
SternisheFan points out that there is a great new panorama made from shots from the Curiosity Rover. "Sweep your gaze around Gale Crater on Mars, where NASA's Curiosity rover is currently exploring, with this 4-billion-pixel panorama stitched together from 295 images. ...The entire image stretches 90,000 by 45,000 pixels and uses pictures taken by the rover's two MastCams. The best way to enjoy it is to go into fullscreen mode and slowly soak up the scenery — from the distant high edges of the crater to the enormous and looming Mount Sharp, the rover's eventual destination."
Electronic Frontier Foundation

DOJ Often Used Cell Tower Impersonating Devices Without Explicit Warrants 146

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the bending-the-rules dept.
Via the EFF comes news that, during a case involving the use of a Stingray device, the DOJ revealed that it was standard practice to use the devices without explicitly requesting permission in warrants. "When Rigmaiden filed a motion to suppress the Stingray evidence as a warrantless search in violation of the Fourth Amendment, the government responded that this order was a search warrant that authorized the government to use the Stingray. Together with the ACLU of Northern California and the ACLU, we filed an amicus brief in support of Rigmaiden, noting that this 'order' wasn't a search warrant because it was directed towards Verizon, made no mention of an IMSI catcher or Stingray and didn't authorize the government — rather than Verizon — to do anything. Plus to the extent it captured loads of information from other people not suspected of criminal activity it was a 'general warrant,' the precise evil the Fourth Amendment was designed to prevent. ... The emails make clear that U.S. Attorneys in the Northern California were using Stingrays but not informing magistrates of what exactly they were doing. And once the judges got wind of what was actually going on, they were none too pleased:"
Security

When Your Data Absolutely, Positively has to be Destroyed (Video) 295

Posted by Roblimo
from the it's-all-about-the-magnetism dept.
Here's a corporate motto for you: "Destroying data since 1959." Timothy ran into a company called Garner Products (which doesn't use that motto as far as we know), at a security conference. While most exhibitors were busily preserving or encrypting data one way or another, Garner was not only destroying data but delighting in it. And yes, they've really been doing this since 1959; they started out degaussing broadcast cartridges so broadcasters could re-use them without worrying about old cue tones creeping into new recordings. Now, you might ask, "Instead of spending $9,000 or more to render hard drives useless, couldn't you just use a $24 sledge hammer? And have the fun of destroying something physical as a free bonus?" Yes, you could. You'd get healthy exercise as well, and if you only wanted to destroy the data on the hard drives, so what? New drives are cheap these days. But some government agencies and financial institutions require degaussing before the physical destruction (and Garner has machines that do physical destruction, too -- which is how they deal with SSDs). Garner Products President Ron Stofan says in the interview that their destruction process is more certain than shooting a hard drive with a .45. But neither he nor Tim demonstrated a shooting vs. degaussing test for us, so we remain skeptical.

Comment: Re:What I have noticed (Score 5, Interesting) 240

by Lacrocivious Acropho (#42974309) Attached to: Compared to my immediate peers, my typing

I used to be a (mostly newspaper) typesetter, back when dedicated 'cold type' typesetting machines were required, namely, pre-PC. The keyboards on those machines were amazingly good, albeit usually all grey and twice as wide as a simple qwerty board, so if you got off the home keys you would hear horrible clunking sounds as their positioning mechanics attempted to execute gibberish commands. I was able to cruise along at 120 words per minute on those, with vanishingly few errors despite having only a 16-character horizontally scrolling LED bar to show me what I was keying. The laborious process of pasting in corrections definitely encouraged accuracy.

Racing deadlines and with typical news stories which rarely contain complex words, I could manage sustained bursts of nearly 140 wpm with very few errors.

Today, at 59, I have been seduced by the ease with which errors are corrected on PCs, as well as the wonders of GUI environments, and my raw typing speed not only has fallen to 80-85 wpm, I also make a lot more errors requiring the backspace key. You have to practice just as you do with music to maintain very high typing speeds, and today's environments simply do not require or reward such effort for most people.

The best typesetter I knew was an accomplished classical pianist. He could typeset 140 wpm for hours at a time, while carrying on casual conversations with passersby and editors, with almost no errors whatsoever, including while setting *classified ads* with all their cryptic abbreviations. The proofreaders -- yes, young whippersnappers, there used to be actual people who proofread copy before it was published! -- loathed and despised him, because few things are as boring as proofreading and never finding any errors.

Note that while such speeds may be impressive without context, there is a vast difference between the cognitive dissociation from content almost required of a typesetter or transcriber, contrasted with the very different mind-to-motor-skill requirements of *composing* while typing.

As for keyboards themselves, few PC keyboards in my experience rise above the level of execrable. The IBM Model M was an exception, while more recently and of a completely different type, the Logitech K800's (backlit!) keyswitches have finally made notebook-style keyboards a joy to use. The overwhelmingly vast majority of PC keyboards available today, however, still suck donkey butt with a vengeance.

Comment: They can't even manage animated dancing girls! (Score 1) 736

You think *your* examples are bad??! Well, brace yourselves for *this* horrendously inexcusable progress bar failure!! It has been *FIVE YEARS* since this perfectly reasonable and absolutely vital functional operation was requested: https://trac.transmissionbt.com/ticket/1000 ... and *FIVE YEARS!* later, not a single release candidate has been forthcoming from the slacker devs of the Transmission project! It is an outrage! How much longer must the Entitled End Users of the world suffer at the idle hands of callous and indifferent devs??!! Pardon me, I must go and lie down before I dehydrate myself from the righteous mouth-frothing of the oppressed.
Facebook

Washington State To Allow Voter Registration Over Facebook 178

Posted by Soulskill
from the now-your-cat-can-vote dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The Associated Press reports that the state of Washington will soon have an application available on its Facebook page that will let residents register to vote. Washington and other states already allow online registration, but this is the first time it will be allowed over Facebook. The state's co-director of elections, Shane Hamlin, said, 'In this age of social media and more people going online for services, this is a natural way to introduce people to online registration and leverage the power of friends on Facebook to get more people registered.' Facebook won't have access to the State's database, and Hamlin says Facebook won't collect any of the personal information with which it interacts."
Handhelds

New Handheld Computer Is 100% Open Source 195

Posted by kdawson
from the small-wonder dept.
metasonix writes "While the rest of the industry has been babbling on about the iPad and imitations thereof, Qi Hardware is actually shipping a product that is completely open source and copyleft. Linux News reviews the Ben NanoNote (product page), a handheld computer apparently containing no proprietary technology. It uses a 366 MHz MIPS processor, 32MB RAM, 2 GB flash, a 320x240-pixel color display, and a Qwerty keyboard. No network is built in, though it is said to accept SD-card Wi-Fi or USB Ethernet adapters. Included is a very simple Linux OS based on the OpenWrt distro installed in Linksys routers, with Busybox GUI. It's apparently intended primarily for hardware and software hackers, not as a general-audience handheld. The price is right, though: $99."
Security

CERT Releases Basic Fuzzing Framework 51

Posted by timothy
from the this-field-cannot-be-left-blank dept.
infoLaw passes along this excerpt from Threatpost: "Carnegie Mellon University's Computer Emergency Response Team has released a new fuzzing framework to help identify and eliminate security vulnerabilities from software products. The Basic Fuzzing Framework (BFF) is described as a simplified version of automated dumb fuzzing. It includes a Linux virtual machine that has been optimized for fuzz testing and a set of scripts to implement a software test."
Image

Study Shows Standing Up To Bullies Is Good For You 458

Posted by samzenpus
from the don't-start-anything-but-always-finish-it dept.
It will come as no surprise to anyone who's ever talked to my grandpa, but a recent study has shown that standing up to a bully is good for you. Although being bullied can be stressful and lead to depression, children who returned hostility were found more likely to develop healthy social and emotional skills. From the article: "In a study of American children aged 11 and 12, researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles, compared those who stood up to aggressors with those who did not. Children who returned hostility with hostility appeared to be the most mature, the researchers found. Boys who stood up to bullies and schoolyard enemies were judged more socially competent by their teachers. Girls who did the same were more popular and more admired by teachers and peers, the researchers found."
Wine

Wine 1.2 Release Candidate Announced 165

Posted by timothy
from the vintage-2010 dept.
An anonymous reader writes "After evolving over 15 years to get to 1.0, a mere 2 years later and Wine 1.2 is just about here. There have been many many improvements and plenty of new features added. Listing just a few (doing no justice to the complete change set): many new toolbar icons; support for alpha blending in image lists; much more complete shader assembler; support for Arabic font shaping and joining, and a number of fixes for video rendering; font anti-aliasing configuration through fontconfig; and improved handling of desktop link files. Win64 support is the milestone that marks this release. Please test your favorite applications for problems and regressions and let the Wine team know so fixes can be made before the final release. Find the release candidate here."
Cellphones

Why Overheard Cell Phone Chats Are Annoying 344

Posted by timothy
from the they-drown-out-the-bark-of-my-gun dept.
__roo writes "American researchers think they have found the answer to the question of why overhearing cell phone chats are annoying. According to scientists at Cornell University, when only half of the conversation is overheard, it drains more attention and concentration than when overhearing two people talking. According to one researcher, 'We have less control to move away our attention from half a conversation (or halfalogue) than when listening to a dialogue. Since halfalogues really are more distracting and you can't tune them out, this could explain why people are irritated.' Their study will be published in the journal Psychological Science."

Counting in octal is just like counting in decimal--if you don't use your thumbs. -- Tom Lehrer

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