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Submission + - $340 Audiophile Ethernet Cable Tested->

An anonymous reader writes: Ars Technica has done a series of articles that attempt to verify whether there's any difference between a $340 "audiophile" Ethernet cable and a $2.50 generic one. In addition to doing a quick teardown, they took the cables to Las Vegas and asked a bunch of test subjects to evaluate the cables in a blind test. Surprise, surprise: they couldn't. They weren't even asked to say which one was better, just whether they could tell a difference. But for the sake of completeness, they also passed the cables through a battery of electrical tests. The expensive cable met specs — barely, in some cases — while the cheap one didn't. It passed data, but with a ton of noise. "And listeners still failed to hear any difference."
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Comment Re:Why not both? (Score 4, Informative) 235 235

It's called an "inverter" air conditioner. It produces a variable-frequency AC sine wave from the DC voltage. The variable-frequency to the compressor changes the cooling output, so instead of turning the air conditioner on and off as the temperature wanders back and forth across the set point, it varies the frequency to keep the temperature steady.

http://www.acson-international...
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

It is brilliant.

Sharp already sells these air conditioners. They're just removing the DC rectifier circuit and running directly on DC instead of starting with 50hz or 60hz AC.

Comment Re:Why not both? (Score 4, Informative) 235 235

High AC voltages have induction losses. They don't travel as well as low voltages.

BUT

The goal is to send lots of watts, not lots of amps or volts. Low amperages travel well. High amperages don't travel at all -- they lose most of their energy to heat. Simple transformers (which are basically just coils of wire) can swap amps for volts so that lots of watts can travel a long distance at low amperages.

Comment Re:DC power? (Score 5, Informative) 235 235

Basically, Sharp is eliminating the rectifier circuit from one of their existing products. Sharp currently sells it as an 'Inverter Air Conditioner".

Unlike most air conditioners, inverter air conditioners are always-on. The inverter varies the -frequency- of alternating current sine wave in order to change the cooling output of the air conditioner. It continuously outputs just enough cooling to maintain a steady temperature in the room.

To do this, the A/C converts the incoming wall power to DC and then back to variable frequency AC. Eliminating the initial AC to DC conversion here makes good sense.

Comment Loser of a case (Score 1) 1 1

This is a loser of a case. If the annotations are official legal guidance of the state of Georgia then it's not copyrightable. If they're a third-party creation owned by a third party then Georgia has no standing to bring suit. That's for the third-party to do.

Sounds like they're playing fast and loose with the rules.

Comment Re:What Security Experts Can Learn From Non Expert (Score 1) 112 112

Even better, move all applications to the web, so everything runs on central servers which are much easier to manage and secure than a fleet of personal computers. Give users Chromebooks or another thin client configuration and don't let them install software.

This is presumptuous. You're a security guy. You don't know enough about the myriad and varied work the company's employees do to make birght-line rules about how they must do it. Nor will you with any amount of training.

Comment Re:What Security Experts Can Learn From Non Expert (Score 1) 112 112

> All of those things are worthless with a user base that does not respect and actively subverts security.

Framing the situation that way is a mindset that guarantees catastrophic security failure.

Hear hear! The user base doesn't actively subvert security unless security is obtrusive and overbearing. Subverting security is too much effort.

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: State Breaking its Own Law Against Employee Misclassification 2 2

An anonymous reader writes: I've had the privilege of developing software as an independent contractor for various agencies of a particular state for many years. These past few, however, have seen changes: now I, and almost every other contractor I know, are being managed very differently.

This state is now making a widespread practice of using the businesses it awards contracts to as staffing agencies, knowing full well that the people coming in are 1099s and receive none of the benefits or protections of regular employees. These contractors are expected to be on site full-time, are not allowed to use their own hardware or software, and are managed alongside, and perform substantially the same work as other, regular employees. This is apparently done to cut costs.

The State has no legal risk here — that rests solely on the businesses it awards contracts to. But given that this particular state takes a hard line against misclassifying employees, this strikes me as profoundly hypocritical.

I am not here to ask for legal advice. Indeed, I have already retained counsel in this matter. Considering additional detail that I won't get into here, Federal law is likely being broken. Since this is also one of the states that have the strict "three prong" test for classifying employees, the State's own law is definitely being broken.

I thought, maybe somebody should say something. But my lawyer's reaction surprised me. He said — this isn't a big deal, you could just go find another client. And you know what? He's right. I could totally do that. Maybe since we in the IT industry tend to be well paid, nobody should care, and there's no reason complain.

I'm not asking for legal advice or a recommendation as to what I should do personally; I'm still forming an opinion on the larger issue here, and I'd like you to share yours.

Comment Re:Correct (Score 1) 267 267

Can't use peer to peer tech without something in the middle to mediate it. That's not an assumption, it's a requirement for a reasonably secure system. Without that approach you're vulnerable to arp hijacking and all manner of related badness.

Requires the sysadmin to implement strong situational awareness. That's not an assumption, it's a requirement for a reasonably secure system.

Daily backups with quick restore. If you don't have this, your network is a time bomb no matter what else you do.

For information loss issues, you partition the network. There's no excuse for time cards bound up in monolithic accounting software where every employee needs to be able to trade packets with the server holding all the employees' SSNs. Any system you can build will leak. Better for those leaks to be droplets rather than a flood.

Or you can do things that are ineffective and crush staff productivity. It'll look good on your resume after the company goes under.

Frankly, Scarlett, I don't have a fix. -- Rhett Buggler

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