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Comment: Re:SubjectsSuck (Score 1) 181

by mlts (#49611561) Attached to: VA Tech Student Arrested For Posting Perceived Threat Via Yik Yak

Yik Yak isn't that bad for the most part. A lot of it is people asking for kik IDs and wanting a good time, there are a few tired witticisms posted every so often, a few things about human sexuality popping up quite often...

In general, if one plays/or ever played WoW, it is like Barrens chat, or present-day General/Trade in the garrison.

Of course, you get the people who say something stupid, but the reporting mechanism takes care of that pretty quickly.

Comment: Re:Linux fans will always hate Ubuntu now (Score 1) 86

by mlts (#49611463) Attached to: Ubuntu 15.04 Received Well By Linux Community

The way to get Linux into the desktop space isn't by drawing individual users in. It is how IBM's PC became the standard -- take over business, then personal stuff follows.

The trick is to get businesses to embrace a desktop distribution, by having the OS be able to be managed and policies set by Active Directory GPOs to being able to be audited/updated with existing management tools, to being able to be images and said images updated and maintained so reimaging a desktop is as simple as a PXE boot.

Trying to woo individual users is like herding cats. Instead, get the big boys using your OS, and the personal users will follow.

Comment: Re:The SystemD marketing rolls on... (Score 1) 86

by mlts (#49611413) Attached to: Ubuntu 15.04 Received Well By Linux Community

SystemD, (and to a lesser extent FirewallD) have their points... but as anything in IT, it is good to at least learn the basics of them in order to get around, just like one has to learn how to use SELinux and not just disable it completely.

I personally am on the fence... SystemD provides a lot of functionality, especially with just one command (systemctl). However, I will have a lot more faith in this new functionality once the code certification and auditing is complete.

Comment: Re:Systemd and Gnome3 == no thanks (Score 1) 86

by mlts (#49611269) Attached to: Ubuntu 15.04 Received Well By Linux Community

It follows the same path that OS X and Solaris 11 do, with the root user disabled by default, with the first user created having sudo access to root. A quick change of root's password can enable this if needed.

All and all, this is a good thing. There are a lot of security audit checklists that are starting to require root not be able to be logged on directly, so shipping an OS that has this locked down is not unusual.

For personal use, there isn't anything wrong with unlocking root and using that with su or just logging directly in. However, in business/enterprise settings, it does make sense to have a user stage, even if it is just having different RSA keys in root's authorized_hosts file that belongs to each individual user. I like unlocking root locally, so I can log in with that in single user mode, but having remote root access completely disabled.

Comment: Re:Lead Acid (Score 3, Interesting) 210

by mlts (#49608619) Attached to: Tesla's Household Battery: Costs, Prices, and Tradeoffs

There is also battery life. Take NiFe batteries. They have less energy density than lead-acid... but properly watered, they have an extremely long lifespan.

Yes, a rack of NiFe cells would take up a more room than Tesla's technology... but they will still be working and storing energy long after the current generation of lithium batteries have hit the landfills.

Comment: Re:Prefer support (Score 1) 260

The TMT people do want the support of the community. They have gone far out of their way to do so, to invest in local education, to invest in cultural affairs, to be respectful of cultural and environmental concerns, ect. The protesters conveniently ignore how much they have done, and misinformation and rumors can be found all over social media.

Comment: Re:No guilt for you (Score 1) 260

Poi is, um, an acquired taste.

Throw some Thai curry on top of it, taro and coconut go great together. Or just mix it up into some kulolo. I really can't see the whole 'tastes like paste' thing, but that's just my opinion. It's just like any other staple foodstuff, the flavor is somewhat mild so as to complement that which it is served with. That's a feature, not a bug. Now, pa'i'ai, if that was served up more, I'll bet that'd be a much more popular way of serving taro. Pa'i'ai kicks ass.

They were there because the Hawaiian Studies faculty told their students to go.

And could you just imagine the outrage if a science department told their students to go to a counter-protest.

Comment: Re:More religious whackjobs (Score 1) 260

That could be part of it. Anyone following the project knows that these protests have been going on for a while at low levels, but didn't really kick up until last month at about exactly the same time as when Canada chipped in $240 million.

There is another part though; the Hawaiian sovereignty issue. Of course, that's a bullshit line of reasoning in a lot of ways (as I discuss here). Is this a shakedown for money by activist leaders or way of inciting anger for their own political gains? Probably both, though the latter seems to be more of a clear goal. Then again, if its the former, that's not something one would openly admit.

Comment: Re:More religious whackjobs (Score 4, Informative) 260

Those are all good points, but the sovereignty activists don't care. Each of them envisions themselves the new king or queen; this is about petty attempts at grabbing power, nothing more. They really don't care if they are wrong about the telescope as long as it gives them something to rally around (Hawai'i resident here; I have actually heard this said by an anti-TMT activist).

They don't want the economic or educational benefits the telescope would bring; poor and uneducated are good for the leaders. They want racial discontent more than then want tolerance; perceptions of persecution are good for the leaders. You can point out to these activist leaders out that Hawaiian sovereignty is an inherently racist idea (it's no better than the scumbag white nationalist groups, not in my book; all race based nationalism is immoral bronze age bullshit). You can point out that everyone born in Hawai'i is an American citizen equal under the law. You can point out the economic problems that would occur the instant Hawai'i left the US, if that were to happen, and that life for their supporters would become much harder. They do not care, and they don't care if Hawai'i goes to shit, as long as they are the rulers of shit mountain.

That's what this is really about. They want people poor, uneducated, angry, and easy to manipulate for their own benefit. None of the benefits the TMT would provide to Hawai'i County's public education system (like the high school robotics program they fund) and economy? That's great to them. They sure as hell don't want other people educating kids. And they do want people to say stupid shit like 'Hawaiians are anti-science' because it creates an us vs them environment (DO NOT SAY 'Hawaiians are anti-science' as some people have; that's racist and not true. Hawaiian does not equal anti-TMT activist). So we are not talking about a benevolent group here. Keep in mind, every year people do off road racing and snow boarding and other things on Maunakea, and leave all sorts of garbage, and no one cares about that. The Mauna is only sacred in so far as a political point can be made, in other words, they don't really give two shits about mountain or the telescope or the supposed sacredness, only what they can gain from it. Or course, if they really cared, they wouldn't be doing shit like introducing invasive ants.

Additionally, I'd like to point out that if they were really all about ancient Hawaiian traditions, they would realize that there was nothing prohibiting building things on Maunakea and that ancient Hawaiians were active stargazers. There is nothing at all suggesting that this would be offensive. The protestors also seem to be ignoring the fact that their presence on the Mauna would, in contrast, be offense; only the ali'i and kahuna were allowed on the Mauna, not commoners like them (of course, in the modern State of Hawai'i, we are all equals and Maunakea is open to all; there are no castes of people). It's no different than the Christian groups that make up their religion as they go along and pick and choose what parts of the Bible they like in order to justify their current inane actions. It's just like a lot of stuff that seems anti-science on the outside; it's all about someone's power or wealth, you just have to find out who, and in this case it is the Hawaiian sovereignty movement.

Hope that clear up some of the situation here. And the thing is, all of their legal, cultural, economic, scientific, and environmental arguments are complete fabricated bullshit. So whenever the telescope is built (because there is literally no good reason to block it) they are just going to use it as more 'proof' that they are being repressed, and that no one listens to or cares about Hawaiian voices (not true). The activists picked a target that gets them a win either way.

Comment: Re:We... (Score 4, Informative) 27

by ChromeAeonium (#49590033) Attached to: Second Ever Super-rare Pocket Shark Discovered

Well duh. It might have been packing a concealed laser in that pocket.

But really now, that's in TFA. It was collected and frozen five years ago as part of a study on sperm whale food, and was only later found among the frozen catch. So yeah, it's dead and people killed it, and that really sucks, but it wasn't intentionally and specifically targeted to be killed.

Comment: Re:With REALLY Huge Fans... (Score 1) 279

by mlts (#49586741) Attached to: New Study Suggests Flying Is Greener Than Driving

I wonder about airships. If we can build some that can handle the cargo of a larger plane, it takes far less fuel to keep those going than it does an average plane (mainly because an airship won't crash if the engines stop.) I can see those being quite effecient at moving cargo. Since they only go 20-60 mph (32-100 km/hr), they won't be replacing high speed rail... but airships require relatively little energy to operate compared to a plane which needs airspeed to maintain lift.

Comment: Re:Does it matter? (Score 1) 52

by mlts (#49571709) Attached to: TeslaCrypt Isn't All That Cryptic

You know what you are doing. Ransomware makers don't prey on the Slashdot crowd. In general, people here are well inoculated from malware, just because we tend not to run files from the Web, our Web browsers are well sandboxed (or run in a VM), and if someone calls up and demands we run software to "fix our Windows box", the response will make the caller's brain ooze out their ears.

However, most people on the Net don't. They go to a pr0n site, and get presented with "you must download this application in order to get past this point"... download it, and get infected. Or, their browser isn't patched and some add-on gets compromised. Or, a phishing E-mail says they have a UPS package, and they need to just open the "foo.pdf .exe" file to see more details. The ones that get nailed by those are the ones that the ransomware guys know are going to pay up.

Comment: Re:Does it matter? (Score 4, Interesting) 52

by mlts (#49569769) Attached to: TeslaCrypt Isn't All That Cryptic

It isn't that simple. Some ransomware variants will find the backup device (external hard drive, NAS share, etc.) and zero those out. In fact, if the hard disk is encrypted, malware can just zero out the locations where the volume encryption key is stored, then dismount the drive.

Other variants will encrypt files, but will transparently allow access them until a point and time where it zeroes out the decryption key and puts up the ransom dialog. This makes backup utilities like Mozy and Carbonite ineffective since they may not have a usable copy.

For effective backups, one needs a backup server that pulls backups from clients, so malware cannot tamper with already stored files on the server side. However, outside of larger enterprises that use NetBackup on desktops, this isn't something that is often done. On a small scale, one can use Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials, Retrospect, or a file share from all clients which is mounted by the backup server to copy documents off.

One also needs to keep good backups since the scrambled files might be around for a long time without someone knowing that they were tampered with. This requires multiple backup rotations and data lifetimes (again something only really found in enterprise-grade backup programs.)

Comment: Re:Talk about creating a demand (Score 4, Interesting) 329

by mlts (#49568771) Attached to: Why Our Antiquated Power Grid Needs Battery Storage

I have personally found that if you mount normal panels (as opposed to the flexible panels that you tape/glue in place directly on the surface), you create some clearance under the panels that air circulates under, insulating the roof from the sun.

To me, solar is a "why not" item. Not just for saving on electric bills, but providing electricity in areas where it isn't worth the hassle to run code-compliant wiring to, especially if all one is needed is basic lighting or a place to charge cordless drill batteries. For RV-ing, solar goes without saying, because it keeps house batteries topped off and helps minimize engine or generator use. Even for a plain old house, one can use a set of panels, storage battery, and inverter as a UPS so one can move all the parasitic draw devices (set top boxes, consoles, USB chargers) to that circuit, where they get clean power... and are not on the electric bill.

Comment: Re:Talk about creating a demand (Score 1) 329

by mlts (#49568487) Attached to: Why Our Antiquated Power Grid Needs Battery Storage

I think the key to that $13k outlay is the life of the batteries. If it is like conventional lithium-whatever technology, the batteries will have to be replaced in 4-5 years, making that $13k a $26k expenditure every decade.

However, if the battery life is like NiFe with an automatic watering system, the batteries could run indefinitely, and 100 years from now, the battery bank would still be useful and relevant.

I'm in agreement with the parent. If cars were like reactors, a lot of the press would be pointing to an old Packard or Studebaker and saying how unsafe it is over 55 mph, so all cars should be banned.

The more I want to get something done, the less I call it work. -- Richard Bach, "Illusions"