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Comment Re:No. It won't be (Score 1) 95

I think the hold up is that ARM needs to be comparable in terms of computing power to Intel. Right now ARM's great as a low power platform (though Intel is seriously catching up) but Chromebooks are a very conspicuous case where ARMs are used in an environment they're almost never seen in.

I don't think the problem is the ABI. Apple has solved that three times before, 68K to PowerPC, and PowerPC to ix86 and ix86-64. The solutions weren't beautiful, but they worked. And the PowerPC to two different Intel APIs transition occurred with the current generation of operating system.

If ARM makes sense, they'll switch to it. I just don't see why they would - yet.

Comment Re:Why the lack of interest? (Score 2) 132

I'm not sure there's ever been that much interest. It's more of a theoretical standard, useful for people packaging binaries with hard coded paths, but even that isn't particularly useful right now. The LSB lost credibility from the Debian side from the start by picking the rival RPM as the packaging manager, and while I gather that different was papered over in time, the other fundamental issues - differing library versions, different standards for inclusion, etc - that prevent the concept of a "universal" package never got resolved.

It's probably a good thing it's going, a bad mostly ignored "standard" is probably worse than no standard at all, as it leads developers to make assumptions about what's available that they probably shouldn't.

Comment Re:The system isn't very good (Score 1) 70

You realize this sort of attack was entirely expected, and that the system is engineered to withstand it, and did, trivially?

Expected, yes. Engineered to withstand - no. Bitcoin Core nodes accept as many transactions as they can with no memory limit until eventually they bloat up so much the operating system kills them. The official "solution" for this is to babysit your node and if you see it running out of memory, change a command line flag to make it ignore any transactions with lower than the given fee. Unfortunately of course, this also ignores all end user transactions paying lower than that fee as well.

I maintain a fork of Core called Bitcoin XT. It has a flag that lets you set a maximum number of transactions to keep in memory at once (and in a future version it'll change to be a max number of bytes, as that's the actual resource that's limited). The node will randomly remove a transaction from the pool to make room for a new one when out of space. As during an attack the memory pool is mostly full of spam, obviously this logic mostly involves kicking out spam to make room for {more spam, actual legit transaction} as opposed to just falling over and dying.

Comment Re: ZFS is nice... (Score 1) 267

But it's combined by the user at runtime, not by canocal. The GPL allows an end users to do this.

This is a way that people kid themselves about the GPL. If the user were really porting ZFS on their own, combining the work and never distributing it, that would work. But the user isn't combining it. The Ubuntu developer is creating instructions which explicitly load the driver into the kernel. These instructions are either a link script that references the kernel, or a pre-linked dynamic module. Creating those instructions and distributing them to the user is tantamount to performing the act on the user's system, under your control rather than the user's.

To show this with an analogy, suppose you placed a bomb in the user's system which would go off when they loaded the ZFS module. But Judge, you might say, I am innocent because the victim is actually the person who set off the bomb. All I did was distribute a harmless unexploded bomb.

So, it's clear that you can perform actions that have effects later in time and at a different place that are your action rather than the user's. That is what building a dynamic module or linking scripts does.

There is also the problem that the pieces, Linux and ZFS, are probably distributed together. There is specific language in the GPL to catch that.

A lot of people don't realize what they get charged with when they violate the GPL (or any license). They don't get charged with violating the license terms. They are charged with copyright infringement, and their defense is that they have a license. So, the defense has to prove that they were in conformance with every license term.

This is another situation where I would have a pretty easy time making the programmer look bad when they are deposed.

Comment Re:I guess they realised... (Score 4, Informative) 130

Well, it's funny how something with "the underpinnings of how X11 does it are actually decrepit and inefficient and compare poorly to other strategies that leverage different entry points that Wayland actually preserves" still manages to solve the problem, and Wayland doesn't.

X11 isn't perfect. Nobody's ever argued that. It's just nobody's really asking for a replacement, and if they were, they wouldn't be asking for Wayland. X11 is an extraordinary piece of technology, it takes some gal to claim everyone should just throw it out and replace it with a ground up rewrite that adds no new features and doesn't support the major features X11 is famous and loved for.

It's not like init/SystemD, where init really was a bug ridden piece of garbage that's needed replacing now since before Linux itself came on the scene, and SystemD implements everything init did but does it right.

Comment The money quote (Score 5, Insightful) 175

Hayden said that losing the first Crypto War on the Clipper Chip did not stop the US government from obtaining the information it needed.

âoeIn retrospect, we mastered the problem we created by the lack of the Clipper Chip,â he said. âoeWe were able to do a whole bunch of other things. Some of the other things were metadata, and bulk collection and so on.â

So... "don't ban encryption, we don't need to!"

Comment Re:ZFS is nice... (Score 1) 267

Uh, that doesn't work. The problem is that doing exactly what you've written down is contriving to avoid your copyright responsibility by deliberately creating a structure in someone else's work which you believe would be a copyright insulator. If you went ahead and did this (I'm not saying that you personally would be the one at Ubuntu to do so), I'd love to be there when you are deposed. Part of my business is to feed attorneys questions when they cross-examine you. I have in a similar situation made a programmer look really bad, and the parties settled as soon as they saw the deposition and my expert report. See also my comment regarding how Oracle v. Google has changed this issue. You can't count on an API to be a copyright insulator in any context any longer.

Comment Re:ZFS is nice... (Score 1) 267

I think you need to look at this in the context of the appeal of Oracle v. Google. We had a concept of an API being a boundary of copyright based on 17 CFR 102(b) and elucidated by Judge Walker's finding in CAI v. Altai. That stood for a long time. But Oracle v. Google essentially overturned it and we're still waiting to see what the lower court does in response.

Comment Re:Waaaahhhhh!! (Score 1) 686

Your summary is missing the 500lb gorilla, which makes it extraordinarily misleading to anyone following the discussion.

Let's correct and add information to one dubious statement here:

And, one of my own questions: Why do we want/need PE binaries when ELF are extensible [the "E" in ELF] and have widely supported tool chains? Answer: Because MS is pushing it.

No, the answer is: Because Microsoft only signs PE binaries.

And then let's go up to:

why do you bother with the MS keysigning of Linux kernel modules to begin with?

Here is the 500lb gorilla: Because most implementations of secure boot only accept keys signed by Microsoft.

So in order to get a random Linux-based distribution to run on a generic secure boot enabled PC, your choices are either to remove secure boot (which isn't always possible), hope that the firmware maker included your distribution's key (highly unlikely), or have it signed by Microsoft, which means going the PE route.

ELF may be superior to PE, but that doesn't make it a solution to the problem that RedHat raised. X.509 keys may be an international standard, but they have nothing whatsoever to do with this.

It was a legitimate issue to raise, and it was handled badly by Torvalds and others. A legitimate response would have been "The inability of our kernel to be installed on what's likely to be the majority of computers in a few years is a small price to pay for using superior technologies", not "RedHat just wants to give Microsoft blow jobs", which is immature, pathetic, and doesn't answer anything.

Comment Re: Waaaahhhhh!! (Score 1) 686

In this case, it's a poor example, because RedHat wasn't showing any signs of proposing this because they wanted to please Microsoft. RedHat was, instead, saying they felt practical concerns meant that accepting Microsoft has de-facto control over the signing process needed to be recognized.

But if they did? What's wrong with "please" or maybe "serve", as in "If RedHat wants to serve Microsoft, then..."?

Comment Re:Win 10 (Score 2) 208

Where I was coming from was this:

Windows 8.1 didn't really fix the major problem people had with Windows 8.0 (the lack of a Start menu and insistence on having a touch-oriented Start Screen by default)

People hated Vista because of the slow speed, poor memory handling, and the permission dialogs, all of which were (mostly) fixed in 7 (albeit I suspect the permission dialogs were fixed by the third party developers who stopped doing the things that caused them to come up.)

So 8.1 wasn't really the 7 to 8.0's Vista, it was more of one of the service packs that made Vista more usable later on its life. 10 though seems like... it's a whole new Vista. And 8.1 was a nice tablet operating system even if it was horrible on the desktop, whereas 10 seems to be fairly poor everywhere.

Here's hoping they fix it soon. Otherwise I'm going to have to see if I can restore 8.1 on my tablet...

Uncertain fortune is thoroughly mastered by the equity of the calculation. - Blaise Pascal