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Comment Missing something? (Score 1) 490

The issue most commonly overlooked is the most important role played by the elected representatives: governing the government. There is the initial role of passing (and repealing) legislation, but that is one small part. Who makes sure the judges are doing their jobs properly? How can we know that the money is being spent as legislated? These duties should not be entrusted to the body that is being given the power to collect and spend the money, but to a body of publicly elected representatives. It is hard enough with this body to get the government to follow the laws it is charged with, and impossible without it.

Submission + - Hackers trace ISIS Twitter accounts back to UK government (

schwit1 writes: Hackers have claimed that a number of Islamic State supporters' social media accounts are being run from internet addresses linked to the Department of Work and Pensions.

A group of four young computer experts who call themselves VandaSec have unearthed evidence indicating that at least three ISIS-supporting accounts can be traced back to the DWP's London offices.

Comment All hail the wall wart (Score 1) 81

More and more I tend to think the number one protector of consumer and small business gateways is the wall wart, which predictably fails every 2-5 years, giving the appearance of a new device being needed, thus another temporary improvement in security. I suspect that one day, a clever malware maker will figure out how to grab voltage and current in the device and inform the users a new power supply is required.

Personally, I run pfSense on an Atom board with numerous NICs.

Comment Re:Will others follow suit? (Score 1) 175

Yes, I did notice you conveniently ignored the problem of not having 64-bit drivers.

I have a work computer that has such pathetic computing requirements that spending even one penny on something new is one penny too much, and you have not only have no sense of humor, you don't understand relative positions and probably consider the phrase "let them eat cake" as a legitimate position of generosity.

I cannot know for sure why Google creates and manages the Chrome browser, but if their intent is to encourage me to use Google products, the strategy is failing, which leads me to believe that they get backdoor deals with hardware makers, sense they are the ones to most likely profit, and, er, maybe even offer up A.C. comments on Slashdot.

Comment Re:Will others follow suit? (Score 1) 175

The problem is that while the chip may support 64-bit, the drivers don't. I have two laptops running Windows 7 32-bit because one of them has a Core Duo, which doesn't support 64-bit, and the other doesn't have 64-bit drivers for audio and never will because SigmaTel was bought by Apple.

I really feel that Google is not resource-limited on these things and there is some other motivation. The way it is working for me is that I am migrating away from Google completely for everything because I can't rely on them for anything. Maybe if they stepped out into the real world where the average person doesn't make $200,000 per year playing ping pong all day, they would understand that we're not all out there replacing all of our gadgets every six months.

Submission + - How to see a black hole's event horizon

StartsWithABang writes: One of the great discoveries of the past few decades was that of a supermassive black hole at the center of our Milky Way. No longer was it mere conjecture or unverified theory; observations in the X-ray, infrared, radio, and of stars orbiting a central, non-luminous point all indicate the presence of a 4 million solar mass black hole at a location known as Sagittarius A*. At a distance of 26,000 light years, an object as small as this black hole’s event horizon — even at 23 million km in diameter — would be unresolvable to a telescope the size of an entire country. But thanks to the very clever technique of very long baseline interferometry, the proposed Event Horizon Telescope has the capabilities, for the first time, of imaging a black hole’s event horizon directly.

Comment Re:Why? (Score 4, Insightful) 161

One thing I never see published is the details about the flights. Certainly if the pilot is near an airport, especially during landing and takeoff, then obviously the perps are engaging in malicious behavior.

However, my math says that the major airports reported in the article received 778 of the 5,352 reported incidents in 2015. I live in a residential area that is quite some distance from any airport. A substantial number of aircraft violate the 1000 foot above ground level FAA minimum for residential neighborhoods. I have tried, many times, to call someone, somewhere, who might give a shit about this very annoying violation and there isn't anyone who will do anything (including just returning a phone call), short of my hiring a PI and a lawyer.

Most disturbing is the helicopters flying what I estimate to be within 200 feet of my house. Although it is a very sturdily built house, the whole thing shakes when the helicopters pass by. Also incredibly annoying is the dip-shit in his WWII fighter plane practicing his tricks, and sometimes just diving and climbing endlessly.

If I were a lesser person, since I cannot appeal to any authority that will take any action, whatsoever, I might choose to take a more violent approach than just thinking of them as total assholes.

Only slightly less assholes are the clueless journos who report the stories. Usually it comes from the establishment wannabes at Ars Technica, where critical thinking flies out the window, though this time it's USA Today, and the story is always the same: Report the huge number of incidents, then mention the slim minority that occur right next to an airport. It sure would be nice to see someone actually analyze this data to give people a better understanding of what might be driving this behavior, as I wouldn't be surprised if just asking pilots to follow the law might result in some unsubstantial quantity of these incidents going away. Of course the real problem with this is that it reveal that pilots are also aggressors, so it isn't in that industry's interests to pursue such ends.

Submission + - Value of university degree continues to decline

BarbaraHudson writes: Following up from an earlier report from Statistics Canada (pdf), the Parliamentary Budget Officer warns that an increasing number of university graduates are overqualified for their jobs.

Last year, 40 per cent of university graduates aged 25-34 were overqualified for their job. Five years ago, that percentage was only 36 per cent. In 1991, it hit a low of 32 per cent, or less than one out of every three university graduates.

The problem is bigger than that, because those young workers spent money, time, and resources to get those qualifications.

If you have a university degree in one of the following:

  • business, management and public administration
  • social and behavioural sciences and law
  • humanities.

you are much more likely to end up in a job that isn't commensurate with your education. All that debt and no pay-off.

Comment It's a niche product. (Score 2, Insightful) 200

The dedicated ebook reader is for people who - you guessed it - read books, so the economies of scale and marketing opportunities will always be smaller. My prediction (hope, really) is that in the next few years someone will have a Kickstarter ebook reader that makes the Kindle ebook reader look like a child's toy. Personally, I don't like touchscreen devices that require reflected light, as I tend to pay too much attention to the smudges, so I haven't been interested in upgrading from my ancient, but 'works fine, lasts long time' Kindle 3.

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