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Comment: Re:Class Difference (Score 1) 671

by TED Vinson (#34999728) Attached to: The Rise and Rise of the Cognitive Elite

It's amazing how many military officers have history and/or political science degrees. For the most part it does them very well, but they often end up way out of their element in Space Command. Then, it matters how they treat their subordinates, who can save their asses. I think a lot of officers with those degrees realize that they are well-prepared for a career in the military and little else and make the military a career while those with technical degrees have options. Therefore, senior levels have an abundance of history majors.

Another interpretation: many of them had already decided on a military career and considered history or polysci to be as good as any other degree for that career choice.

For the Infantry this is likely true. For CYBERCOM, not so much. [As alluded to in parent]
Fortunately, there are more than a few officers with advanced technical degrees AND practical expertise AND a grasp of history/geopolitics for that type of work. Many have lots of job options, yet still choose to serve.

Comment: Re:May the Force... (Score 2, Funny) 132

by TED Vinson (#34377204) Attached to: Empire Strikes Back Director Irvin Kershner Dies at 87

Lucasfilm has announced the December release of a 'new director's cut' of The Empire Strikes Back in which Mr. Kirshner will make a cameo appearance as a 'Force ghost' to honor his contribution. This is the perfect, must-have gift for Star Wars fans everywhere.

Lucasfim has also announced the January 2011 release of a 'special, revised director's cut' of The Empire Strikes Back in which the Kirchner Force ghost will be played by Hayden Christensen...

Comment: Re: Military healthcare (Score 0, Troll) 449

by TED Vinson (#32158618) Attached to: Defense Chief Urges Big Cuts In Military Spending

Eventually any pyramid scheme must fall apart. If you are under 50 and expect to get a comfy retirement from Social Security you will likely be very disappointed. I do not plan to get any useful amount back from Social Security. I do, however, expect Uncle Sugar to keep its mitts off my other retirement preparations.

It will be too politically costly to let Social Security collapse completely. It seems likely that 'means testing' will be implemented. Those with pensions, 401Ks and other savings will get less money from Social Security, probably less than the 'contributions' they made while working. Everyone will get something, even if it is only a token payment, just to say no one is left out.

For those of us who have planned and saved diligently for retirement, the Social Security payment will be something less than a dollar each month. And that, my friends, is change you can believe in.

Comment: Re:Reverse of the Medal (Score 1) 219

by TED Vinson (#27917319) Attached to: NSA Wages Cyberwar Against US Armed Forces Teams

The reason for preventing the teams from conducting attacks is not legal, it is technical. This exercise is not on a LAN like the typical capture the flag game. The academies are connected via WAN links for the CDX.

Unconstrained force-on-force attacks would probably collapse this network or result in an ugly scrum of flooding attacks and bandwidth starvation, rather than an educational exercise.

Comment: Re:Not as many? (Score 3, Informative) 219

by TED Vinson (#27917067) Attached to: NSA Wages Cyberwar Against US Armed Forces Teams

I'd be more interested in the permiter defenses they used. Like what kind of IDS/IPS did they use?

The rules require the teams to construct the network within the constraints of a notional budget. This forces the teams to make choices about what infrastructure and security measures to deploy. They cannot have everything they might want; this is a taste of the risk-benefit decisions managers and admins have to make. It is also intended to make it feasible for the Red Team to penetrate a well-watched network, having only a minimal user-base, in only four days.

IPS and other automated response systems are prohibited in the CDX.

For IDS the West Point team used Snort on BSD, with a custom-blended set of rules from VRT and Emerging Threats.

The budget decisions did not support deploying a dedicated firewall device. Firewalling had to be done using Cisco ACLs; however, some creative use of NAT and VLANs helped to make the Red Team's job a bit harder.

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