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Comment: This happens every so often. (Score 5, Interesting) 74

by Myria (#48174687) Attached to: New Music Discovered In Donkey Kong For Arcade

As another example, in January 2013, I discovered a cheat code in the SNES RPG Breath of Fire 1 that allows you to create a save file at a few key locations in the story. This cheat code sat hidden for about 20 years, and it wasn't until I came along and reverse engineered the game that it showed up.

Link to it: click me. Sorry for the quality; it is a really difficult thing to record when your only recording device is an iPad and there was nobody home at the time. Not to mention how hard it is to do that controller sequence and record with only two hands.

Comment: Common? (Score 1) 323

by Myria (#48142657) Attached to: How English Beat German As the Language of Science

The point is that claiming "things are worse than ever" is pretty silly in a country where it used to be common for people to own slaves.

Except that it was never common to own slaves. Slave ownership was primarily among Southern aristocrats--your average white Southerner wasn't rich enough to afford one.

Still laughed, though. <3

Comment: Signed integer overflow being defined. (Score 1) 427

by Myria (#47675407) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Bjarne Stroustrup About Programming and C++

Screw ancient architectures and minor compiler optimizations. I'd rather have my binary math work like all of us were taught in discrete math classes. Not to mention not have my machine pwned by the mob because a programmer didn't realize that their security check was removed for being undefined behavior.

Comment: Signed integer overflow and security holes (Score 1) 427

by Myria (#47673429) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Bjarne Stroustrup About Programming and C++

Signed integer overflow is undefined. That is, in C++, overflowing a signed integer is considered to be equally bad as dividing by zero. Combined with modern compilers, this is resulting in exploitable security bugs in many programs.

Programmers have been taught for decades about two's-complement integer arithmetic and how it overflows. As a result, many of us who don't know about signed integer overflowing being undefined are making "mistakes" like assuming that it wraps as we were taught.

The reason that C++ considers signed integer overflow to be undefined is because of non-two's-complement machines. Such machines pretty much don't exist anymore. Why does C++ insist upon keeping such requirements around, when it is wreaking security havoc on everyone else?

Comment: Not all that new, but what is personal? (Score 1) 206

by Myria (#47386655) Attached to: New Russian Law To Forbid Storing Russians' Data Outside the Country

As another pointed out, Russia isn't anywhere near the first country to do this; in fact, doesn't the European Union require it Union-wide?

Anyway, I'm most curious how the Kremlin defined "personal". Being that a lot of us are software industry programmers, product managers, etc., it'd be useful to know what kind of changes we need to make to our respective companies' international back-end infrastructure.

Comment: If any questions about the original Xbox come up.. (Score 1) 58

by Myria (#47215333) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Andrew "bunnie" Huang About Hardware and Hacking

...and Andrew/bunnie doesn't answer them, I can. I'm very briefly mentioned in the book under a different Internet name that I'd rather not say here.

I was the person who figured out how to dump the second version of the MCPX's secret boot ROM without having to repeat the HyperTransport bus tap craziness that Andrew did in the first place. Namely, the A20M# attack, which was much easier to do. (If Andrew hadn't done his original attack, though, we wouldn't have had the knowledge necessary to pull off my attack. <3 Andrew)

We kept the A20M# attack secret until the 360 was released, in case another MCPX silicon revision was released. It turned out that Microsoft had, in fact, coded a new MCPX ROM to defeat many of the exploits used to hack Xboxes - they just never released it, probably because it would've cost a fortune for what was then a console in its late stages. We didn't find out about this MCPX ROM update until some people looked into how the Chihiro arcade boards worked in 2014, which showed the new MCPX code in the debug ROMs. The A20M# attack still would have worked on this design - it was an attack on entire secret boot ROM design, not the MCPX ROM's code =)

Myria

Comment: Waterworld (Score 1) 44

by Myria (#47084195) Attached to: Hawaii's Oahu Used To Be a Bigger Island

I'll probably sound crazy for asking this, or get modded off-topic, but... My understanding is that the scenario in the movie Waterworld can't happen by melting the polar ice caps because there isn't enough water frozen in them to rise enough enough to cover the continents. Goodbye to Florida and similar areas, but most of the continents would remain. (And thanks to global warming, we'll likely see that scenario... >.<)

But it seems to me as though one way in which it could happen is if we greatly expanded our use of geothermal power, to the point that we exhausted the energy driving plate tectonics. (Hopefully most of the leftover heat would escape into space, or we'd really be screwed.) Then the continents would gradually erode until the solid surface of Earth was at an even level, at which point the existing ocean would completely cover Earth.

To use that much geothermal energy seems pretty ridiculous, though. Just some random Myria musings...

Comment: Re: Can we install linux on it ? (Score 4, Informative) 316

by Myria (#47048483) Attached to: Surface Pro 3 Has 12" Screen, Intel Inside

The Surface Pro, like any other x86 PC that comes preinstalled with an OEM version of Windows 8/8.1, is locked down with Secure Boot UEFI. However, Microsoft follows its own rules--the Surface Pro also meets their own requirement that the BIOS allows you to disable Secure Boot given physical access.

Also, I believe that the Surface Pro's preconfigured UEFI Secure Boot NVRAM contains the Microsoft "Third Party Marketplace" UEFI certificate, which if true would mean that the Surface Pro would out-of-the-box recognize, as an example, the Secure Boot-compatible GRUB2 on the 14.x x86-64 Ubuntu disks as legitimate. I don't have a Surface Pro to check this, however.

Comment: No, not quite true. (Score 2) 575

by Myria (#46754055) Attached to: Microsoft Confirms It Is Dropping Windows 8.1 Support

Yes, apple want you to upgrade to iOS 7, but if you don't want to (or can't because your hardware is too old) they still provide security patches for iOS 6.

The last update was iOS 6.1.6 in Feb:

6.1.6 was only released for devices that cannot run iOS 7. If you have a device that can run iOS 7, you had to upgrade to iOS 7 in order to get the important security fix, even if the device had iOS 6.x at the time. There was never an iOS 6.1.6 released for iPad 2 or 3, for example.

If they had released an iOS 6.1.6 for iPad 2/3, it would've allowed downgrading from iOS 7.x to iOS 6.x then jailbreaking, something Apple hates with a passion.

Comment: Chrome's SSL uses a lot of the OS certificate mana (Score 2) 303

by Myria (#46689975) Attached to: OpenSSL Bug Allows Attackers To Read Memory In 64k Chunks

Chrome just uses the operating system for a lot of the certificate validation of HTTPS, so it can be vulnerable to security holes that apply to the operating system. Chrome wasn't vulnerable to "goto fail", but presumably it has been vulnerable to others in Windows and Mac OS.

Comment: One big way in which Git is not SVN-compatible (Score 1) 162

by Myria (#46635791) Attached to: Subversion Project Migrates To Git

(Technically, as Git is SVN compatible, so you could get this effect simply by using Git 'locally'.)

git2svn has a problem that we ran into recently: because git does not support hierarchical branching, if you do not keep all your branches in a single Subversion directory, it will take an excessively long time for a local git repository to synchronize with a Subversion repository.

For example, let's say that you have the typical /branches directory in Subversion. Now user "myria" comes along, and she wants to make her own directory of branches so that her own branches don't pollute the /branches directory. She does an svn copy of /trunk to /branches/myria/new-crypto. Now git2svn tries to import this change from Subversion into a local git repository and takes three hours. Why?

Because git doesn't support hierarchical branch names, from git's naive perspective, what Myria has done is make a copy of the entire repository into a new directory named "new-crypto" inside of her "myria" branch. Git does not interpret her commit as a creation of a branch - it sees "myria" as the branch, and "new-crypto" as merely a directory within the branch. Subversion gives no special meaning to the directory named "branches", so git2svn is simply using a hack of assuming that the "branches" directory contains objects that it can convert into git's branch objects. Git thus sees her commit as one giant commit of 100,000 files, and consequently takes forever processing it.

The above was a recently-encountered real-life situation at the office from about two weeks ago.

Life would be so much easier if we could just look at the source code. -- Dave Olson

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