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Comment Re:Ok, so I got the popcorn ready.... (Score -1, Troll) 254 254

I'm going to use all these negative mods as evidence of the M$ shills that fucking infest this board. It's been taken over. Holy fuck. Guys, you are earning your money. And blowing your mod points. Slashdot: you have lost a contributor with me. I'm out. Just get paid directly from M$ and be done with the facade.

Comment Re:Ok, so I got the popcorn ready.... (Score -1, Offtopic) 254 254

I've gotten popped for every response I've given, but I have enough karma to buy Florida, so I don't care. (I post at 1 for fun.) But you seem genuine and intelligent, so you deserve some answers.

First of all, I run only one linux server. Everything else is OS X. So, no I'm not married to linux and I do run proprietary software when it is most useful to do so.

But I also have a problem with the semantics of "botnet" because the use of the word outside of the technical community has the connotation of an autonomously replicating system. I now understand technical people want to give the word a more relaxed meaning and they enforce that definition with negative mod points. But, outside of the technical community, the "generally accepted" definition is vague and if you asked Joe Regular Guy directly, you'd probably learn that autonomous propagation is implicit, once you explained the concept to him. "Botnet" ain't exactly in Funk and Wagnalls, by the way.

Also, my first linux box was rootkitted through the FTP server, and so I learned about the pitfalls of poor security on linux a long time ago. No one needs to explain to me that it can be vulnerable.

The lesson here is to not use the word "a*******f" and "M*******t" in the same sentence. That will get you popped by hidden forces and flamed by Anonymous Cowards.

Comment Re:Continuity (Score 1) 891 891

I use pylab and scipy as a replacement for Matlab. But it's really frustrating because sometimes you do an update and everything can bust because this or that lib won't compile with your current compiler or this or that dependency is not available or it wont work with X or aqua term or whatever.

On OS X, matplotlib (pylab), numpy, and scipy are all single click installers now for python 2.5, which is itself a single click installer. I put all these through their paces daily and the newest installs are rock solid.

Just as you wouldn't buy OS X 10.6 and install it before the second point upgrade (e.g. 10.6.2), you shouldn't try to upgrade to python 2.6 before all of the other scientific packages are ready.

Maintaining a python 2.5 scientific environment has never been easier on OS X and ubuntu. I think it's even easy on windows with enthought.

Comment Re:Ok, so I got the popcorn ready.... (Score -1, Troll) 254 254

Did you even read what I linked to? A botnet is a collection of compromised computers that share a Command and Control channel.

Ok. I went back and read the definitions.

I like this one:

The term often applies to groups of computer systems that have had malicious software installed by worms, Trojan horses or other malicious software.

And you like the one that fits your fiscal agenda. So I'm not the only one who selects their definitions, am I? You. Are. An. Astroturfer.

Comment Re:Ok, so I got the popcorn ready.... (Score -1, Troll) 254 254

"define: botnet"

I suspect you are astroturfing for MS here and so will want "botnet" to mean "any set of two or more compromised computers". But that definition means that the number of windows botnets would be astronomical, so be careful about your definitions.

Instead I propose the following definition:

botnet: an automated and self propagating network of compromised machines.

If "self propagating" is essential to the definition of "botnet" then the group of manually compromised linux machines is not a botnet.

Comment Re:Ok, so I got the popcorn ready.... (Score 5, Funny) 254 254

Rather than the point-and-click convenience you'd expect on windows.

It's not that easy on MS windows. After you click the link to the tennis player nudie pix, your machine locks up. Then you have to *hard reboot* (without the help of the blue screen to let you know your computer crashed). Only after you hard reboot, usually by pulling the power cord all the way out, can you run the botnet software.

Windows really isn't as user friendly for botnets as everyone thinks it is. I hope 7 does better.

Comment Re:Ok, so I got the popcorn ready.... (Score -1, Troll) 254 254

This isn't technically a botnet:

It's unclear exactly how the servers have become infected. Sinegubko speculates they belong to careless administrators who allowed their root passwords to be sniffed. Indeed, the part of the multi-staged attack that plants malicious iframes into legitimate webpages uses FTP passwords that have been stolen using password sniffers. It's likely the zombie servers were compromised in the same fashion, he explained.

These are simply rootkitted servers and they appear to have been done manually. The unique aspect of this is that it seems to be coordinated, so the MS astroturf team has decided to call it a "botnet".

Comment Re:Who cares? (Score 1) 835 835

Dude, my dad and brother and uncle run linux. They don't give a shit about what's under the hood. I put it on their computers so they would stop begging me to fix their shitty windows boxes every time I visit. Do you know how many headaches getting them to convert has saved me? Hundreds probably. I started converting them over about 4 years ago--in the dark ages. My dad just asked me for a new unbuntu disk to install on a computer he is selling or buying for himself. I ripped the disk and mailed it to him, and I haven't heard from him. *He doesn't know jack-shit about linux or unix.* Can you wrap your mind around that. This is the man's native operating system and he couldn't "ls" if his life depended on it. And he couldn't configure a driver either. Do you get that? In fact, if I hadn't switched him and my brother to linux, I wouldn't have time to write this. I'm not friggin' lying here. In fact, I run OS X exclusively for myself except in VMs, so I'm not a linux zealot. If I had a choice between linux and windows, I'd run linux hands down. But I fork over the big $$ for OS X. You probably do to. So quit pretending windows is just as good as linux. Windows is shit. I have first hand experience.

Google Books As "Train Wreck" For Scholars 160 160

Following up on our earlier discussion, here's more detail on Geoffrey Nunberg's argument that Google Books could prove detrimental to academics and other scholars. Recently Nunberg gave a talk at a conference claiming that the metadata in Google Books is riddled with errors and is classified in a scheme unfit for scholarly use. This blog post was fleshed out somewhat a few days later in the Chronicle of Higher Education. Quoting from the latter: "Start with publication dates. To take Google's word for it, 1899 was a literary annus mirabilis, which saw the publication of Raymond Chandler's Killer in the Rain, The Portable Dorothy Parker, [and] Stephen King's Christine... A search on 'internet' in books written before 1950 and turns up 527 hits. ... [Google blames some errors on the originating libraries.] ...the libraries can't be responsible for books mislabeled as Health and Fitness and Antiques and Collectibles, for the simple reason that those categories are drawn from the Book Industry Standards and Communications codes, which are used by the publishers to tell booksellers where to put books on the shelves. ... In short, Google has taken a group of the world's great research collections and returned them in the form of a suburban-mall bookstore." The head of metadata for Google Books, Jon Orwant, has responded in detail to Numberg's complaints in a comment on the original blog post — and says his team has already fixed the errors that Nunberg so helpfully pointed out.

Lawsuit Claims WGA Is Spyware 360 360

twitter writes "Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA), Microsoft's euphemistically named digital restrictions scheme, is the target of another spyware and false advertising lawsuit. 'Microsoft this week was sued in a Washington district court for allegedly violating privacy laws through Windows XP's Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) copy protection scheme. Similar to cases filed in 2006, the new class action case accuses Microsoft of falsely representing what information WGA would send to verify the authenticity of Windows and that it would send back information [daily IP address and other details that could be used to trace information back to a home or user]. The complaint further argued that Microsoft portrayed WGA as a necessary security update rather than acknowledge its copy protection nature in the update. WGA's implementation also prevented users from purging the protection from their PCs without completely reformatting a computer's system drive.' There were at least two other lawsuits launched in 2006 over WGA. According to the Wikipedia article, none of them have been resolved. The system is built into Vista and Windows 7."

Comment Re:WTF (Score 3, Funny) 349 349

No shit, Sherlock?

Sherlock was actually the sleuth from some fictional stories written long ago. So it's inaccurate to use "Sherlock" here.

If I hear one more person use "Sherlock" in the wrong context, my brain is going to explode because they don't know proper usage.

The term you are looking for is "fucktard".

Learn English.

Comment Re:WTF (Score 4, Insightful) 349 349

That sill doesn't explain why placebos are now nearly twice as effective as ~1990, but this paragraph from the article might be a factor:

Because if you have an imaginary concocted ailment like restless leg syndrome or hyperactivity, then the imaginary effects of a sugar pill are going to work well to alleviate the imaginary symptoms of the imaginary disease.

Pharmaceutical companies define disease these days. They advertise diseases and they push doctors to prescribe their poisonous ineffective chemicals to treat the advertised diseases.

You could probably find a correlation between the number of advertised diseases like restless leg syndrome and this so called "placebo effect".

[Crash programs] fail because they are based on the theory that, with nine women pregnant, you can get a baby a month. -- Wernher von Braun