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Comment: Interconnectivity is both opportunity and danger. (Score 3, Interesting) 92

by Sheetrock (#42756871) Attached to: Wall Street Journal Hit By Chinese Hackers, Too

The news of the earlier hack got me thinking about the unique risk/reward of ubiquitous communication and the challenge of computer security to keep pace. Certainly some say the pace of technological innovation is no longer in step with yesterday's, but that almost begs the question. It's truly ironic that modern computing becomes physically smaller as its footprint on our lives looms ever larger with each new year, yet no one disputes that, lately, electronic progress rests solely within the social stratum these days.

We should ask ourselves, however, the rather basic question of whether this seismic shift in the nature of the changes in technology brings with it an impedimentary effect on our lives, or indeed to wonder to the degree technology has ever been pedimentary when it comes right down to it. Yes, it's certainly got its foot in the door, but as with feet and doors it's not always possible to know at the moment of impact whether said foot represents opportunity, doom, or a casualty of a society overeager to shut the door to change.

Certainly the last thing anyone wants is a race to the bottom. Ah, but that's not entirely accurate when one considers the vested interest shoemakers have in most modern day footraces. It suggests that, moving forward, the most important thing to do when evaluating new technology in 2013 may very well be to first identify the shoemakers for that technology. Ask yourself: if I'm already wearing five pairs of socks, do I even need shoes at this point? Odds are, you don't.

Comment: Re:If you have a smarter router (Score 1) 505

I don't think it's something that's prepackaged and easy to install, unfortunately. The principle behind it is here, as implemented on OpenBSD.

For hardware, I guess just a small PC with a wireless network adapter and a wired network adapter. Major thing is to make sure everything is compatible with OpenBSD (or Linux as another option, if it looks like the above process can be tweaked to it). Wireless adapters are a pain for compatibility.

It seems to me as I write this that it'd be really neat if the EFF sold ITX-profile routers preconfigured to create open hotspots that route over TOR.

Comment: This is exciting. (Score 3, Insightful) 24

by Sheetrock (#42741791) Attached to: Nearby Star Could Host a Baby Solar System
Typically, you only get one of these around a newly formed star, a T Tauri star, or Herbig Ae/Be star. This discovery really broadens the scope for the types of stars that could yield solar systems like our own, and maybe in turn, the likelihood for finding some sort of extraterrestrial life.

Comment: If you have a smarter router (Score 2) 505

Keep in mind that (with a decent router) you can open your Wi-Fi but route all guest connections through TOR transparently. That might be a fair compromise, along with rate-limiting, capping per-session usage, and setting a hard limit for the month if necessary to prevent yourself from going over your own cap on service.

Open Wi-Fi everywhere actually makes me more nervous for the clients than for the servers. People already don't understand security with Wi-Fi, and need to know that any server they're using can observe their traffic if it isn't encrypted. I guess that's already a concern without open Wi-Fi everywhere, though.

Comment: Would love to see this go before a jury. (Score 1) 473

by Sheetrock (#42740673) Attached to: Hacker Faces 105 Years In Prison After Blackmailing 350+ Women

Because there are two worlds colliding here in the mind of the average person.

  • The school of thought that the victim is always at least partly responsible for being conned. There's a sense of superiority a lot of people get when they hear about scams where, because they themselves would never fall prey to a scammer, anyone who does is deficient or incautious.

  • Anyone charged with a crime involving a computer for more then Solitaire, porn, and recipe hunting must be guilty.

Comment: Dangerous amounts of pessimism here. (Score 0) 181

by Sheetrock (#42740039) Attached to: The Human Brain Project Receives Up To $1.34 Billion

If science required knowledge of the outcomes before it was performed, ask yourselves: how many of the technologies around us would we enjoy today?

Taking the space program as an example, putting a man on the moon was symbolic, but the payback for the research and development went far beyond that. Even if we didn't reach the moon, we got memory foam, orange drink, and satellites out of the deal.

But too many people are unwilling to pay for R&D if they don't have a 100% guaranteed outcome. Well, science doesn't work like that. The best we can do is speculate about the gains from better and better software-based brain models. Simulated protein folding probably seemed a bit goofy to somebody when it was first proposed. We don't know if we don't try.

+ - Peepshow over for body scanners->

Submitted by Master Moose
Master Moose (1243274) writes "The "peepshow" scanners that have caused an uproar at airports are finally getting the heave-ho.

It took more than two years of passenger complaints, but the US Transportation Security Administration says it is pulling the plug on the Rapiscan backscatter scanner. The move was made because the manufacturer did not meet a deadline to come up with new software that would create less revealing images. In all, 174 machines at 30 airports will be shut down and moved out.

Rapiscan could not create new software for its backscatter machines and threw in the towel this month. The TSA cancelled its contract with the company."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:So, what do you do at these things? (Score 1) 43

by Sheetrock (#42720695) Attached to: LinuxFest Northwest is Coming in April (Video)
That sounds pretty good. I figured there had to be something more to it if 1500+ people were showing up. 18 years in and my imagination with regard to Linux still only goes so far as to web browse, write code, and beg WINE to run games properly. Though I certainly wouldn't turn away automated beer if it came in the next Ubuntu.

Comment: So, what do you do at these things? (Score 1, Funny) 43

by Sheetrock (#42719951) Attached to: LinuxFest Northwest is Coming in April (Video)
I'm assuming installing Linux and using Linux are on the agenda, and drawing a blank on the rest. Disputes over the best distro? Presentation of devices that run Linux that nobody knows run Linux? Competitions to get two sound cards in the same system to work reliably with both ALSA and PulseAudio?
Linux

LinuxFest Northwest is Coming in April (Video) 43

Posted by Roblimo
from the it's-always-good-to-get-together-with-1200-close-friends dept.
Jakob Perry, today's interviewee, is a volunteer who helps make LinuxFest Northwest happen. This is an event produced by the Bellingham Linux Users Group that "has been a tradition in Bellingham, WA since 2000." Bellingham is a small town about a 1.5 hour drive away from Seattle, and a shorter distance from Vancouver, Canada. Last year they had 1200 people. They have a core group of about 10 year-round volunteers, with as many as 60 participating in the event itself, many of whom are students at Bellingham Technical College, which is where LinuxFest Northwest is held.

Just because he's dead is no reason to lay off work.

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