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Comment: Re:DSL paload + ATM = 16% (Score 4, Insightful) 349

by ShaunC (#47771201) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What To Do About Repeated Internet Overbilling?

The point of TFA is that comcast's network metering methods are hidden from customer scrutiny and nobody at weights and measures seems to give a damn.

The best part of your comment is that TFA is regarding ATT's practices, and has nothing to do with Comcast. Yet even someone in Australia knows how fucked up Comcast is, and has mistaken another carrier for Comcast because the story is about ripping off a customer. If that doesn't show the incredibly awful nature and reputation of Comcast, I'm not sure what does. It's too bad the FCC won't see this thread.

AT&T

Ask Slashdot: What To Do About Repeated Internet Overbilling? 349

Posted by timothy
from the hey-these-guys-did-it-to-me-too dept.
An anonymous reader writes "AT&T has been overbilling my account based on overcounting DSL internet usage (they charge in 50 gigabyte units after the first 150). I have been using a Buffalo NFinity Airstation as a managed switch to count all traffic. As you may know, this device runs firmware based on dd-wrt and has hidden telnet functionality, so I am able to load a script to count traffic directly onto the device. I have an auto-scraper that collects the data and saves it on my computer's hard disk every two minutes while the computer is running. While it is not running, the 2 minute counters accumulate in RAM on the device. Power problems are not normally an issue here; and even when they are I can tell it has happened. The upshot of all this is I can measure the exact amount of download bandwidth and a guaranteed overestimate of upload bandwidth in bytes reliably. I have tested this by transferring known amounts of data and can account for every byte counted, including ethernet frame headers. AT&T's billing reporting reports usage by day only, lags two days, and uses some time basis other than midnight. It is also reading in my testing a fairly consistent 14% higher whenever the basis doesn't disturb the test by using too much bandwidth too close to midnight.

AT&T has already refused to attempt to fix the billing meter, and asserts they have tested it and found it correct. Yet they refuse to provide a realtime readout of the counter that would make independent testing trivial. I've been through the agencies (CPUC, FCC, and Weights & Measures) and can't find one that is interested, AT&T will not provide any means for reasonable independent testing of the meter. It is my understanding that if there is a meter and its calibration cannot be checked, there is a violation of the law, yet I can't find an agency that can even accept such a claim (I'm not getting "your claim is meritless", but "we don't handle that"). If indeed they are not overbilling, my claim of no way to verify the meter still stands. My options are running thin here. So that my account can be identified by someone who recognizes the case: 7a6c74964fafd56c61e06abf6c820845cbcd4fc0 (bit commitment).

Comment: But, but.. (Score 0) 207

I thought they only collected tiny bits of metadata of little concern to the average citizen, only when foreigners are involved, and that it was only ever used for superduper terrorist investigations. Oh, the local sheriff has access, too? Drug enforcement and all that?

Quelle surprise.

Comment: Re:Aaaand there goes the lizard squad (Score 3, Interesting) 131

by ShaunC (#47751565) Attached to: Lizard Squad Bomb Threat Diverts Sony Exec's Plane To Phoenix

as gullible and dumb as most of the population is, Uncle Sam hardly has "tremendous credibility with most of them."

Sure he does. You think people don't worship federal law enforcement? Look at the coverage of, say, the Boston bombing; the media and the general public were all lining up to praise any officer who was involved in that situation. Same with Sandy Hook, same with "sabu" and Anonymous, same with every story that gets publicized.

Police abuses are currently part of the national dialogue thanks to what happened in Ferguson, MO. But it took that event, a racially charged shooting, to get national attention and wake people up. Eric Garner being choked to death by NYPD didn't really get much press. The poor child who was disfigured by a SWAT flash-bang in Georgia didn't really get much press. It's just now coming out today that LAPD left an asthmatic man to die while he begged for help, that was almost a year ago and didn't get much press.

The population adores the federal government. The population thinks the NSA spying is all well and good and that Snowden is a traitor.

Congress has one of the lowest approval ratings in history, and yet incumbents continue to be re-elected over and over. Yes, the population is surely gullible and dumb, but to say that Uncle Sam hardly has credibility with them is a farce. The people love their Uncle.

Businesses

Is Dong Nguyen Trolling Gamers With "Swing Copters"? 112

Posted by samzenpus
from the stirring-the-pot dept.
Nerval's Lobster writes Given its extreme difficulty, it's tempting to think that the new Swing Copters is Dong Nguyen's attempt at a joke (You thought 'Flappy Bird' was hard? Check this out!), or maybe even a meta-comment on the emerging "masocore" gaming category. Or maybe he just wanted to make another game, and the idea of an ultra-difficult one appealed. Whatever the case, Nguyen can rely on the enduring popularity of Flappy Bird to propel Swing Copters to the top of the Google and iOS charts. But his games' popularity illuminates a rough issue for developers of popular (or even just semi-popular) apps everywhere: how do you deal with all the copycats flooding the world's app stores? Although Google and Apple boast that their respective app stores feature hundreds of thousands of apps, sometimes it seems as if most of those apps are crude imitations of other apps. The perpetual fear among app developers is that they'll score a modest hit—only to see their years of hard work undermined by someone who cobbles together a clone in a matter of weeks or days. If Apple and Google want to make things friendlier out there for developers, they might consider stricter enforcement policies for the blatant rip-offs filling their digital storefronts.

Comment: Re:I'm looking now (Score 3, Interesting) 134

by ShaunC (#47734417) Attached to: Finding an ISIS Training Camp Using Google Earth

The Kurds helped those people on the mountain escape to Turkey (likely with clandestine US involvement as well). ISIS was actually using Turkey's old embassy in Mosul to hold some Turks hostage for awhile, so it's no surprise that this training camp turned up in Mosul. Neat detective work tracking it down, though.

Comment: Re:Not much of a fix (Score 1) 101

by ShaunC (#47697549) Attached to: ICANN Offers Fix For Domain Name Collisions

Something like protocol://continent.country.service.domains.subdomains/directory/file.ext

But no one is going to put up with typing in na.usa.discussion-forums.technology.slashdot.askslashdot any more than they'd put up with typing in 216.34.181.48. Plus, it's a burden on users to assume that they'll know (or care, or remember) on which continent and in which country each site lives. So we'd need some system to translate your well-executed hierarchical taxonomy into something that users could more easily remember. I wonder what we could call it...

Comment: Re:Mosaic (Score 5, Informative) 426

Don't forget fucking over the original developers in the process. Microsoft negotiated the price down to $2 million by agreeing to pay royalties to Spyglass for each copy sold... Then turned around and gave the product away for free. Spyglass should have worked a better deal, sure, but it was a dick move by Microsoft.

Comment: Re:Too much surplus (Score 0) 264

Now that we have given away this surplus equipment.

And are looking at the possibility of reentering the Iraq area of conflict.

Are we going to need all new equipment to put boots on the ground ?

Yes, yes, now you understand. Now get back to work! We can't meet our quarterly targets if you aren't paying taxes.

-Halliburton

Comment: Re:I'm not sure these buttons belong to the Wash P (Score 1) 136

by ShaunC (#47686703) Attached to: Bezos-Owned Washington Post Embeds Amazon Buy-It-Now Buttons Mid-sentence

Per Wikipedia,

Slate is a United States English language online current affairs and culture magazine created in 1996 by former New Republic editor Michael Kinsley, initially under the ownership of Microsoft as part of MSN. On 21 December 2004 it was purchased by The Washington Post Company.

So, if Bezos owns the Washington Post and the Washington Post owns Slate, well, there we have it. WaPo's using the "slatmag-20" affiliate ID to simplify things for accounting purposes, I guess.

We will have solar energy as soon as the utility companies solve one technical problem -- how to run a sunbeam through a meter.

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