Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?

Comment: Millions (Score 2) 70

If by "millions" you mean "one or two with computer names longer than 64 characters." At least for external threats. For internal threats on public WiFi, the networks should always be presumed to be insecure. For private networks, you already control the devices that connect because you have a secure passphrase, right? Right?

Comment: Re:I dont get why... (Score 1) 91

by StikyPad (#49736453) Attached to: Tweets To Appear In Google Search Results

Companies don't "come and go" quite as rapidly as they did in the early days. Facebook has already been around for over a decade, and Twitter is going on 9 years. That's ancient compared to the lifespan of or other dot bombs, and the userbases are orders of magnitude larger.

Google isn't legitimizing Twitter -- in fact, they returned Twitter results for a while a few years ago until Twitter cut them off. This isn't a new feature, it's a return of an old feature (or bug).

Comment: Re:Sudafed (Score 1) 333

by StikyPad (#49727171) Attached to: Genetically Engineered Yeast Makes It Possible To Brew Morphine

I don't know about all that, but regardless, 100 years ago we made the mistake of believing that banning drugs would make them unavailable, and/or stop people from using them because laws are somehow more compelling than addiction. We wanted, as always, an easy solution to a complex problem.

At the same time, we didn't need to ban cigarettes to decrease usage, so clearly addictive and harmful products can be discouraged without the need to make them illegal.

Comment: Re:And: of which communication types (Score 1) 142

by StikyPad (#49691019) Attached to: House Votes To End Spy Agencies' Bulk Collection of Phone Data

That's just the media's focus, not the law's.

Mostly framed so far as dealing with bulk collection of domestic telephone "metadata," the bipartisan USA Freedom Act addresses activities much broader than phone calls, said government officials and private experts.

Granted, I haven't been able to find more details than that (on a cursory read of the Wikipedia article, anyway).

Comment: Nested Encryption (Score 1) 258

by StikyPad (#49690479) Attached to: Online Voting Should Be Verifiable -- But It's a Hard Problem

What about a layered encryption system?

First, a random token is generated for your vote. This could be generated client side (with potential collisions) -- it's just a way for someone to verify their vote later. That, plus the vote(s) are encrypted with the Tallying Machine (TM) public key. Next, the output of that is combined with your identity information and encrypted with the Identity Machine public key. The whole thing is then sent to the IM, decrypted, identity is verified, voting record is made, and then the encrypted vote+token is sent to on to the tally machine, the vote and token are decrypted and logged. If necessary, the vote+token could be sent to a mixer to shuffle the order to defeat timing attacks.

It be much easier to whiteboard, but I don't see any immediate flaws -- at least none that would be unique to this method of voting. It's a lot how the current in-person voting works as well.

Comment: Re:You cannot know *WHO* is voting (Score 0) 258

by StikyPad (#49690267) Attached to: Online Voting Should Be Verifiable -- But It's a Hard Problem

a dominant family member can be looking over the voter's shoulder, making sure the vote corresponds to the dominant family member's preferences.

There are assholes on both sides of the aisle, and as long as it balances out, it shouldn't matter to the outcome of the election.

Comment: Re:A.I.? (Score 1) 402

Remember when it was claimed: "we'll have strong AI when computers can play chess?"


Then it was: "We'll have AI when you can verbally tell a computer to do useful everyday tasks."

No it wasn't.

As we reach each milestone, we compare the state of the technology to our own human self-awareness and realize that it's time to move those goalposts agin.

It's completely the opposite, actually: Our expectations of AI exceeded the capabilities of even the most intelligent humans: "Understand what I mean, not what I say/write/do." We haven't had to move the goalposts because they're farther than anyone can kick.

Comment: Re: "He hasn't stopped giving." (Score 1) 284

by StikyPad (#49682443) Attached to: Bill Gates Still Trying To Buy Some Common Core Testing Love

There are worse things he could be doing with his money than philanthropy. Standardized testing may (or may not) be counterproductive, but I'm not going to fault someone for making a good faith effort, and the Gates Foundation has done a lot of other great work. It's more than can be said for Jeff Bezos, Rupert Murdoch, or the late Steve Jobs. There are plenty of billionaires who don't do shit except hoard huge piles of cash. There are plenty of things not to like about Bill Gates, but philanthropy is not one of them.

"A car is just a big purse on wheels." -- Johanna Reynolds