Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Radios? (Score 1) 232


Piffle. Satellite phones can be had for less than $300 on Amazon. Mars explorers would be walking around in multi-million dollar suits filled with pumps, heaters and cameras all sucking on monster batteries. The cost of a transponder, in both money and power, would be lost in the noise. And that's just the suit radios; the giant rover would have multiple radios as well.

Face it. It doesn't make any sense. There are only two possibilities; the author is ignorant, or the author assumed ignorant readers.

Comment Radios? (Score 2) 232

Watched it last night. Didn't read the book.

How in the name of all stupid plot devices does each and every space suit, vehicle, structure and other large chunk of habitat equipment not have its own, independent up-link to the multiple Earth-Mars radio relays we already have in orbit around that planet? I squirmed for the first hour because that was too much disbelief to suspend; over the years as habitat equipment appeared on the surface prior to habitation a big collection of radio equipment would unavoidably accrete; they'd be tripping over redundant radio gear.

Maybe the book has some rationale for the mystifying lack of otherwise ubiquitous radio equipment and we can pin it on bad movie making. If the book tries the "lack of funding" trope I'll laugh; so the habitat isn't monitored because Republicans or whatever, yet NASA instantly picks up a signal some (now) ancient lander? Pfft.

Comment Answer? (Score 4, Interesting) 270

Proponents will also have to answer

You can give China MFN status one day in the name of "human rights" theater and then lecture Americans about the importance of environmental protection the next, and no one anywhere blinks an eye. Exactly when are proponents going to have to answer to anyone, about anything? Elites have been trading US prosperity for various and sundry bad overseas agendas since forever and none of them have ever paid the least price.

Comment Re:700 ms latency, though... (Score 2) 58

The latency is bad, but not that bad. Earth to geostationary and back round trip is about 250ms. Switching hardware and ground relay adds a few tens of milliseconds more, so typically you're well above 250ms but not usually more than 300ms. 700ms is some other problem; congestion or something.

But yes, the long round trip makes these systems unsuitable for low latency applications; certainly real time gaming is impossible, but also even just voice communication becomes awkward with that much delay. Some popular online games can be played with high latency; I know of EVE players that play successfully over satellite. That game only updates clients about four times a second at best.... so another quarter second of lag isn't that big a deal.

If your alternative is living in the dark then tens of megabits of high-latency bandwidth is pretty damn appealing.

Comment Re: None of my cards have a chip! (Score 0) 317

You asked someone employed at 7-Eleven a question about financial transactions and company policy and you believed them?



I'll take credible information reported by verifiable sources over your human debris anecdotes. As for my own anecdotes, I've used a chip reader at three retailers in the past week and had no trouble at all. There were no double charges, confusion or failures. The grownups already have this deployed, trained their staff and tested their systems. It's done. The laggards will cut over after they start eating the cost of the fraud they're helping to perpetrate.

And stop talking to convenience store clerks FFS. Do that often enough and one of them will give you a case of TB.

Comment Me too (Score 1, Redundant) 128

I've looked at some expensive KVMs, software control of display inputs and other stuff. Bottom line is no, there isn't a good solution of this. There are a bunch of limited, glitch-prone things you can do, but what you're thinking of doesn't exist yet.

My expectations for such a system are as follows; connect an number or computers (3-4 minimum) in arbitrary ways to a number of displays (4, minimum) and a set of input devices, without a.) lag b.) glitches c.) limitations on resolution, refresh, etc. Lag can be no more than a few imperceptible microseconds. Glitches include input devices not being recognized, causing hosts to have driver conniptions when switching, displays not getting signals, and other typical KVM behavior. All of this must happen using a single button press to switch among programmable configurations, and configuration done with a high quality native GUI on whatever platforms I happen to be running. Oh, and audio.

Modern displays usually have multiple inputs, and some of them even have non-shit firmware that switches between inputs quickly and without a bunch of mode-setting drama. The problem is there isn't a good, universal way to control this from software. There are some creepy, half-supported utilities floating around in freeware/shareware land that work with some displays. Barring that the current state-of-the-art is wearing out the input select button on a display you may not be able to reach...........

I wouldn't hold your breath either. Its going to take a few more years before it dawns on manufacturers that the desktop market hasn't actually died. Right now they're in table/laptop/phone mode and — aside from g-sync and other gamer stuff — there isn't much innovation going on with desktop hardware.

If you're willing to be very selective about your hardware and spend some money, particularly on your displays, you can almost get there. You'll need an active USB KVM system like ConnectPro, displays with a generous number of software controllable inputs, and you'll need to be to be prepared to deal with all the sundry glitches your creation with make you suffer.

Comment Re:How long will the company stay up? (Score 1) 494

This. Either regulations mean something or it's just a bunch of lawyers masturbating.

Every sale prevented by the destruction of VW will go to manufacturers that didn't willfully scam their customers, dealers and compromise public health. There are a plethora of car companies and brands that will be happy to grab up VWs market share.

Comment Re:How long will the company stay up? (Score 0) 494

The big difference is that GM's issue was purely safety related; their crimes didn't offend the Green Police. I'm certain the bulk of EPA staff figure GM's victims deserved what they got for commuting in a car instead of a bicycle. In any case you can certain the penalties will be far, far greater for VW et al. So I have to agree with the GP; VW is in jeopardy, at least in the US.

By the way, if you're one of the many, many VW TDI braggarts that have plagued every automotive discussion on Slashdot since forever; please dispose of your atmosphere wrecking pollution machine. Thanks so much!

Comment Re:Instrumenting c++ to behave like Rust (Score 4, Informative) 262

I found Rust

I've found it best not to talk about Rust around here. The language has already accumulated a legion of haters at Slashdot. Rational discussion about Rust sans the office punklets happens at Hacker News.

It was anticipated that Rust would motivate some progress in C++ memory safety. Some have argued that if that is all that Rust accomplishes it is worthwhile. Too bad an entire language has to be invented to get some folks off the dime.

The uptake of Rust is so large though I don't think it's going to go away just because C++ adopts some degree of compile time memory safety. The language is great on it's own merits, there is none of that half century of baggage to slog through and the entire stack and all native Rust third part modules provide the same memory safety guarantees, barring 'unsafe.'

These things, combined with the never ending stream of opportunities the segfaults and overflows that C/C++ cannot avoid providing will ensure a chunk of mind-share, haters be damned.

Comment Re:Whistleblowing (Score 2) 569

These are the people who turned off all their nuclear plants for solar.

Except they didn't actually do that. They're still running eight of their largest and newest reactors and these supply over 10,000 MWe to their grid today. They "plan" to shut these down. We'll see. If they back-peddle because the alternative is more coal they won't be the first European nation to do so.

It is amazing how well hype and propaganda work. Your "reality" is a fiction created by solar advocates.

Comment Re:How many volts and milliamps did you hit it wit (Score 1) 303

This is the question I had as well. For those following along, Ethernet is magnetically coupled to isolate the Ethernet PHY (the IC/circuit that (de)modulates signals) from the transmission line. This means the signal is propagated across a transformer; there is no direct electrical path between the Ethernet cable and the host. So an attacker pushing high voltage+current into a drop should only be able to damage part of the isolation transformer, in theory.

I suspect the answer is that real Ethernet ports have compromised this model with highly integrated devices. The transformers are simply not tested to destruction with high power and there are failure modes that include welding the primary+secondary together in unfortunate ways, thermally destroying a package of multiple transformers and/or creating other shorts. Unless an electrical device is actually designed to fail gracefully under high current it probably won't. Thus fuses.

Comment Re:Running power through wires shock!! (Score 1) 303

Oh yeah... now I know I'm dealing with a first class BS artist.

So, you propose that every single physical topology change require a visit to the switch closet/server room/whatever to manipulate patch cables?

Jesus H. Christ. How is it possible to be naive enough to think that is plausible and actually type it in a public forum?

While I have never, ever experienced a 90 day unused-port audit, every single site I've ever seen has secured its network hardware behind locked doors, at a minimum. I do that much in my own home. Access is always limited to the few BOFHs trusted with the keys/cards. There is no way in hell IT peons are going to be popping in and out of dark, secured areas every time someone wants to move a printer from one jack to another.

No. Fucking. Way.

Stop typing stuff now. You're just making a fool of yourself. At least you had the good sense to be AC when you started talking out of your ass this morning.

Comment Re:Running power through wires shock!! (Score 1) 303

Just because you are too busy to follow the practice, doesn't mean it isn't a good idea.

What is good about an idea that doesn't actually protect anything? All your "best practice" has done is secure unused ports. USED ports can still be zapped, and from either end of the cable too. Or did your "best practice" also assume non-removable and armored Ethernet cables?

Your "best practice" is a fiction inside your head.

Comment Re:Running power through wires shock!! (Score 3, Informative) 303

If you're following Information Security best practice you shouldn't have any unconnected sockets in your office, and they should be audited at least every 3 months.

So you've raised the bar for the attacker from "zap any random RJ45 jack" to "unplug something and zap that RJ45 jack"? Or am I missing something?

Comment Re:That'll teach you... (Score 1) 301

I for one would like to know

Offending the environmental activ^Hbureaucrats and their noble regulations makes for great Green Theater. You can kill all the bumkins you want, but don't mess with the Green Police. Such are our priorities, right or wrong. Just so you know, this is not a surprise to many of us; not sure why you had trouble figuring it out before now.

I'm always looking for a new idea that will be more productive than its cost. -- David Rockefeller