Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Why is this a story? Everyone has always done it. (Score 1) 120

I've worked for two different hardware manufactures in the past, one of which made boxes that go into data centers, and one that made boxes that go into living rooms. OF COURSE we bought our competitor's products via a "cut out" company, and then took them to the teardown and reverse engineering lab. Everyone does it. Everyone has always done it. Everyone will always do it. It is specifically permitted in intellectual property law, and it's also well understood in case law, such that everyone knows that trying to enforce against it via "user license agreements" will fail in court.

Comment: Re:Good. (Score 1) 841

by Mark Atwood (#45636681) Attached to: Employee Morale Is Suffering At the NSA

> Find a real job, and move on.

Find a real job where?

I wouldn't hire one.

Honestly, I could not in good conscience approve or recommend a technical hire anyone who is "ex"-NSA. Certainly not for a dev, ops, or devops position. I cannot trust their loyalty to their job, their team, the company, the goals of any project, to any commercial NDA they may sign, or the integrity of any networking or data storage system they may touch. I cannot trust one not to leave a hard-to-discover hole in something. They have a prior oath that overrides any other loyalty, an oath they are required to lie about if confronted about.

Comment: Not happened, probably can't, most likely won't. (Score 5, Informative) 477

by Mark Atwood (#45078557) Attached to: HP CEO Meg Whitman To Employees: No More Telecommuting For You

I work for HP, many levels below our CEO.

This undated document has not been distributed to employees. Most of us first heard of it today in the tech press. There is no actual *room* at all the HP offices to pull in all the employees. In fact, I understand that back when HP first started pushing telecommuting, they took the opportunity to do the logical thing, and shrink and close most of their field offices.

So, short form, this news isn't news, because it's not a happened, and probably isn't.

Comment: Re:Economic Geniuses (Score 1) 571

by Mark Atwood (#42177835) Attached to: Microsoft Steeply Raising Enterprise Licensing Fees

Roughly, yes, he does.

If he is directly directing or controlling the investment in any way, yes he does.

On the other hand, if he owns shares in a "technology contra fund" with independent fund managers, and that fund shorts in MSFT, then he doesn't. On the third hand, if the SEC or some pissed off MSFT investors think he is overinvesting in this hypothetical technology contra fund as a way to get around the reporting rules, then he has to report that too. There is no escape, and very few safe harbors.

If you work for a publicly traded company, and you are subject to the lock-out rules and disclosure rules, there will be someone in your HR's legal and investor relation groups who will explain this all to do you deep and exhausting detail.

Comment: The press wants a "Linus" for their own reasons (Score 1) 152

by Mark Atwood (#41774765) Attached to: Does OpenStack Need a Linus Torvalds?

The tech press thinks that OpenStack needs a Linus because the press likes telling narratives about colorful quotable characters because those are easy pieces of content to write, and they sell copy.

The OpenStack project has a number of mutually cooperating teams of people with advanced "groupware" tooling that are doing Just Fine at performing the kind of operational day to day tech direction leadership and patch selection and merging that Linus does for the Linux project.

Comment: Re:v1 was bullshit too (Score 5, Informative) 101

by Mark Atwood (#40803531) Attached to: OAuth 2.0 Standard Editor Quits, Takes Name Off Spec

I was there, I helped write v1.

The reason you had to sort the parameters etc etc was because OAuth 1.0 was designed to be implementable by a PHP script running under Apache on Dreamhost. Which meant you didn't get access to the HTTP Authentication header, and you didn't get access to the complete URL that was accessed. So we had to work out a way to canonicalize the URL to be signed from what we could guarantee you'd have: the your hostname, your base url path, and an unsorted bag of url parameters. Believe me, we *wished* for a straightforward URL canonicalization standard we could reference. None existed. So we cussed a lot, bit the bullet, and wrote one that was fast and simple as possible: sort the parameters and concatenate them.

Go yell at the implementors of Apache and of PHP. If we could have guaranteed that you'd have access to an unmangled Authentication: HTTP header, the OAuth 1.0 spec would have been 50% shorter and a hell of a lot easier to implement.

Comment: Re:Widely reported as fact ... (Score 3, Informative) 121

by Mark Atwood (#40431969) Attached to: Turing Archive Director Questions Alan Turing Suicide Report

Somewhere in the bowels of the archives of the US Government is the paperwork regarding Qian Xuesen's attempt at naturalization, his enprisonment, and his deportment. On those papers will be the names and signatures of the US Government bureaucrats who decided to do this. I wonder if any of them are still alive?

I would like to confront them with the results of their ignorant stupidity.

Well, no, what I *actually* would like to do is throw them and their supervisors into a large bonfire...

Comment: Re:While I applaud the general concept.. (Score 1) 27

by Mark Atwood (#39118745) Attached to: Slashdot Visits Metrix Create:Space in Seattle (Video)

That sounds like a problem you have there. That is not my experience. The makerspaces I know well in Seattle: Metrix and ALTSpace, are nothing like that. All are truly welcome and encouraged to come play. And the same for the O'Reilly makerfairs. And not via some politically correct faux-welcoming "outreach" either. We have a lot of different kinds of people, working on all sorts of different kinds of projects.

Comment: Re:While I applaud the general concept.. (Score 1) 27

by Mark Atwood (#39118699) Attached to: Slashdot Visits Metrix Create:Space in Seattle (Video)

Projects similar to what you describe do happen at spaces like this, and in fact *AT* this very space.

One of the regulars at Metrix is currently working with some friends to build a UAV quad copter.

The widely reported FireSheep project was written and demoed at Metrix.

Recently a class was taught at Metrix on how to pick locks.

A team of geeks working at different space in Seattle launched a balloon to the edge of space.

Your ignorance and apathy is showing. What about trying showing up, looking at what people are doing, and doing something really cool yourself.

Behind every great computer sits a skinny little geek.