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Comment Re:Core problem: backdoor = all messages in plaint (Score 1) 91 91

No, I'm not saying that anyone who breaks into your computer is a bad guy. What I am saying is that if the FBI gets a back door to do good things, then they also greatly increase the chance of crimes being committed by criminals who use the same back door the FBI uses. I am also saying that is that without back doors, a rogue FBI agent violating his authority can do damage to people and the nation, but that a rogue FBI agent violating his authority and with back doors can do extremely large amounts of damage to people and the nation.

Comment Re:Identification is not Authentication (Score 1) 67 67

I think you've hit on something here. The reason I think it hasn't been done yet is that it makes people work much harder at authentication, and (so far) it is too expensive to implement authentication that doesn't use the obscurity of the personal identification data.

Comment Core problem: backdoor = all messages in plaintext (Score 2) 91 91

The article is quite good, and later on it points out that any back door leads to all of the bad guys having just as much or more access to communications as the government or law enforcement have. Comey, FBI, etc. are wishing for visibility into communications, but are not technical enough to realize that they are actually asking for there to be no encryption at all, since the presence of the backdoor renders the communication useless for sensitive information. Another topic that isn't addressed is protecting the public from misuse of the backdoor by government. The existence of pervasive surveillance eventually will lead to the creation of two classes of citizens: The first class "good" ones with law enforcement access to all communications, and the second class, who do not have such access to back doors.

Comment Dr. Who fans are the real conspiracy! (Score 1) 214 214

Maybe in the United Kingdom Scotland Yard fears local fans of American science fiction programs, but they got it backwards. The real troublemakers, tracked by the F.B.I. and U.S. Secret Service, are American fans of the British television show Doctor Who. The American authorities fear that these American fans might go mad and kill themselves, turn against society or start a weird cult. After all, it is patently obvious that X-Files and Star Trek convey perfectly normal behaviors, but Doctor Who presents some very odd and disturbing ideas, not to mention the strange accents and misspellings of simple words like "color" and "civilization".

Comment Aren't performances copyrighted? (Score 1) 73 73

Your driving performance is just another performance, like singing or dancing. It doesn't matter than some company has created a device to record it. The copyright on the data that records the performance belongs to the performer. So any data collected by a company by an app belongs to the user, not the developer of the app.

Comment Comcast's Cards are Corruption (Score 2) 131 131

To reiterate Roodvlees' point, the giving of the cards and the receiving of the cards is corruption. It may not be obvious what the dollar value is immediately, but if you count up the time saved by the politically-connected recipients when they get expedited service, then it almost certainly would exceed Federal standards for gifts.

Submission + - Pizza Hut Tests New "Subconscious Menu" That Reads Your Mind writes: Allison Griswold reports at Slate that Pizza Hut wants to help you order your food subconsciously with a new product that is being tested at 300 locations across the UK that uses eye-tracking technology to allow diners to order within seconds using only their eyes. The digital menu shows diners a canvas of 20 toppings and builds their pizza based on which toppings they look at longest. To try again, a diner can glance at a "restart" button. "Finally the indecisive orderer and the prolonged menu peruser can cut time and always get it right," a Pizza Hut spokesperson said in a statement, "so that the focus of dining can be on the most important part — the enjoyment of eating!" According to news release from Tobii Technology, the Subconscious Menu can determine which ingredients your mind and eyes have been looking at longest in exactly 2.5 seconds. The menu then uses a powerful mathematical algorithm to identify, from 4896 possible ingredient combinations, the customer’s perfect pizza. "Tests on the Subconscious Menu have been incredibly positive with 98% of people, recommended a pizza with ingredients they love."

Submission + - ISPs Must Take Responsibility For Sony Movie Leaks, UK MP Says->

An anonymous reader writes: As the fallout from the Sony hack continues, who is to blame for the leak of movies including Fury, which has been downloaded a million times? According to the UK Prime Minister's former IP advisor, as "facilitators" web-hosts and ISPs must step up and take some blame.

Mike Weatherley MP, the recent IP advisor to Prime Minister David Cameron, has published several piracy reports including one earlier in the year examining the advertising revenue on pirate sites. He believes that companies with no direct connection to the hack or subsequent leaks should shoulder some blame.

“Piracy is a huge international problem. The recent cyber-attack on Sony and subsequent release of films to illegal websites is just one high-profile example of how criminals exploit others’ Intellectual Property,” Weatherley writes in an email to TF.

“Unfortunately, the theft of these films – and their subsequent downloads – has been facilitated by web-hosting companies and, ultimately, ISPs who do have to step-up and take some responsibility.”

Weatherley doesn’t provide detail on precisely why web-hosts and ISPs should take responsibility for the work of malicious hackers (possibly state-sponsored) and all subsequent fall out from attacks. The theory is that “something” should be done, but precisely what remains elusive.

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Submission + - Get Ready for Some Law Schools to Close writes: Elizabeth Olson reports at the NYT that financially wobbly law schools face plunging enrollment, strenuous resistance to five-figure student debt and the lack of job guarantees — in addition to the need to balance their battered budgets. Nine months after graduating, only 57 percent of the 2013 class had full-time jobs that required passing the bar. Law schools are left in the unenviable position of trying to allay students’ fears that they will not be able to find a job that pays enough to repay $150,000 to $200,000 in education loans. With the declining interest, law schools have been working hard behind the scenes to trim their operations and to expand their offerings of joint degrees in, say, law and medicine. Still they are trying to avoid wholesale cuts in faculty or degrees, steps that would publicly eviscerate their business model and reputation. “I don’t get how the math adds up for the number of schools and the number of students,” says Professor Rodriguez of Northwestern, who is also president of the Association of American Law Schools. “We all know it’s happening, and we are all taking steps that urgent, not desperate, times call for.”

The history of another graduate school bust suggests what may be in store for the nation's 204 ABA accredited law schools. After peaking in 1979, dental-school enrollments precipitously collapsed (the reasons why included “improved dental health from fluoridation, reductions in federal funding, high tuition costs and debt loads,” among others). By the mid-1980s, they were down by about one-third. Then, over the next several years, six private universities closed their dental schools, including Emory University and Georgetown University, which had been the largest program in the country. Given there were only about 60 dental schools to begin with, this amounted to a pretty enormous bust. "The point is that law schools are facing similar pressures," says Jordan Weissmann. "Many institutions opened law schools precisely because they were supposed to be cash cows and won’t be particularly psyched to suddenly start subsidizing them. "

Submission + - DARPA looks to connect complex security dots and wipe out malicious cyberwar->

coondoggie writes: The researchers at DARPA think its time for a change in the way security is handled in such systems and later this month will detail a program they call Transparent Computing (TC) they says “will develop technologies to record and preserve the provenance of all system elements/components (inputs, software modules, processes, etc.); dynamically track the interactions and causal dependencies among cyber system components; assemble these dependencies into end-to-end system behaviors; and reason over these behaviors, both forensically and in real-time.”
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Whenever people agree with me, I always think I must be wrong. - Oscar Wilde