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Comment: Re: proving (Score 1) 142

by TaoPhoenix (#49377977) Attached to: Silk Road Investigators Charged With Stealing Bitcoin

I'll go after this because it ties into a pet peeve of mine with too many tv scripts.

"...proving someone is the owner of a given bitcoin wallet is much harder to do than to prove a person is the owner of a bank account..."

Going down the "prove it" road with the police is just bad news. Too many times it screams "I'm guilty but haha". If you're innocent even though a conspiracy of 4 people framed you, do get that good lawyer but then claim your innocence and let the "episode" unfold.

If you get all "come and get me and try to prove it", then you make an error, you're hosed.

One of the cool things about some of the homicide shows is occasionally the interrogating detective will say "look, we've got you on x financial offense, but we need your help as a witness so we'll reduce that as much as we can, maybe to community service plus restitution." But if the suspect gets all smug, even when innocent, then the cops just get grumpy and go for the 5 years in prison max penalty.

Comment: Re:"Fuck You." (Score 1) 323

In the same vein as another post I made, make your password ... that.

It could take strong nerves to get minor infractions and even an expulsion. The parent would need to be in on it, to deal with that.

"What's your password?"
"Fuck You"
"What did you say?"
"I said, Fuck you!"
"That's it, young man, you're in detention/expelled" (depending on how long it went on).

(Time passes)
Administrator discovers he was so angry, he somehow managed not to get the password. So he calls the parent.
"Hello, Parent. I need your son's password, because you know, for the children and stuff."
"Fuck you"

(More hilarity)

Rinse and repeat with new passwords.

: )

Comment: Re:what made me think I had rights (Score 1) 323

There's room here for a vicious satire by a really smart teacher in one of those experimental schools.

"Civics 101".
But the curriculum is written upside down, to list the rights with wry tones of voice, then in very well documented fashion, all the case examples are rights abuses.

Comment: Re:My password is alt-f4 (Score 3, Interesting) 323

Actually, you were just making a "level one" joke, but I'll take to level 2!

Actually make your password Alt&F4!!

Look at it - eight characters, two caps, a number, and three special characters!

And given the technological silliness of the people making this power grab, you get an epic Who's On First routine for the 21st century!

"What's your password?"
"Alt and F4 Bang Bang"
"Yeah, that Cher song. Wanna play it on Youtube?"
"No. I want your password."
"I told you. Alt&f4 Bang Bang"
(Principal does Alt-f4 - Window closes.)
"Hey! You closed my program!"
"I didn't do anything. I'm on the phone, you're at the computer."

(Repeat for fifteen minutes and maybe the school admin will give up! If they survived that one, change it!)

Runner up is this site!
"Okay, I changed it for you. www./

Comment: Re:In inevitable questions of why... (Score 1) 165

by TaoPhoenix (#48861205) Attached to: Your Entire PC In a Mouse

Yeah, and I'll remark people seem to be forgetting the word "prototype".

And this looks pretty classy for a prototype!

Looking over the criticisms: I see a lot of "edge case tweaks", but not thing fundamentally show-stopping. So if you give this all a bit of a forward-future roll, let's try a few ideas:

1. Keyboard vs Mouse.
Keyboards "tend to be wide". Sure, modern designers found some ways to use that bottom layer well. But computer mice *do* seem to have a fair amount of "dead space" while the thing "embiggens" itself to fit your hand ergonomics. So at least partially using that space cleverly is interesting.

2. "Gaming rage & throwing mouse to wall" and "how do you clean it". Just suppose the design has one layer with the comp "in a removable box" aka a square chunk of the hardware. Yes, it happens to sit in the mouse housing, and there's a few wires in there, but just make the super expensive core removable.

3. Keyboards.
To me it's less of a finicky point of mouse contour shape vs keyboard dynamics. So shove the comp stuff into the mouse, and then people can just buy their favorite keyboards. Notice this includes roll-up ones.

4. HDMI cable.
This is where I want to "roll the future forward". We're also pretty close to "monitor goggles", that look to the eye like a 20+ inch screen. Then have the mouse-comp communicate the signal wirelessly. Nothing stopping the goggles from having a co-processor, like they used to do for arcade machines. I've always wanted to do "computing in thin air". So with just a mouse, roll up keyboard, and goggles, your entire comp fits into a small backpack!

Comment: Re:Turn Internet Archive into... (Score 1) 198

by TaoPhoenix (#48754185) Attached to: Adds Close To 2,400 DOS Games

"Is there ANY way the community can fork off the Wayback Machine? Because AFAIK that is the only source for many web pages lost to time and it would truly be a crime to lose them forever because this yo-yo has decided to turn Internet Archive into another warez site."

It's got a couple of complicated twists I don't yet understand though.

Elsewhere we see stories that skies alive if someone torrents a Justin Bieber song, say a homeowner's sister in Kansas or something, they wind up with a multi thousand dollar lawsuit threat and a settlement offer of ten grand.

And this isn't either.

It's Internet Archive. And it's not a faux-hidden little secret section you need a handshake and a passphase to get into. It's x thousand chunks of stuff at a time, with thundering Slashdot-and-media articles to proclaim it around the world.

One of the disturbing aspects of copyright law is how long rights holders can sit around before pulling a trigger to enforce something. (Where, isn't Trademark something you have to defend 'promptly' or lose?) So, it's months later since that last round with the other old games ... So 7000 works at that $300,000 clip ... why isn't one of those copyright troll jerk companies drooling at a billion dollar pot of gold?

To me that's the "hypocrisy" of copyright enforcement.

So it's like some strange card game where Internet Archive is holding a pair of aces in the open, and the other two we don't see, and they're going all in and we can't rationally figure out why someone isn't calling their bluff.

Comment: Re:suspect he didn't even realize he was infringin (Score 1) 61

by TaoPhoenix (#48753955) Attached to: Canadian Anti-Piracy Firm Caught Infringing Copyright

I'm sorry, but I would like to stand in friendly relations to you but ratchet up the rhetoric where it needs to go on this kind of stuff.

"...suspect he didn't even realize he was infringing". No. Just no. But before we get to the big ticket reason why, let's go to an extremely important edge case why.

Look at YouTube. Look at the multi millions of things posted by random accounts. (Who really identifies with handles like grap3fruuit77 anyway?!) Account posts a song, let's say it's Justin Bieber, because this is a Canadian story and I'm sure he has a fan up there. Up goes the song, and the comments say: "I don't own this song! I'm just posting it!"

We should get a slashdot researcher to get 10,000 of these people into a sports stadium on an off day and ask them all "Sure. You don't own it. So why did you post it?" ... Because we're in the middle of an unspoken civil revolution that is subconsciously trying to evolve the meaning of copyrights. It just feels different because it's Not A Cat Picture and/or Not On Facebook.

Now let's look at this guy. He's a "Managing Director, Operations" for a copyright attack dog. Of *course* he realizes he's infringing. He just believes he's above petty little laws for peons. And for a time, he might be.

We need a quiet little voice for the people with big bucks to take these specific kinds of cases, where the copyright guys break their own rules, and pound them into the ground. No settlements, and keep after them if they play shell-company-monte.

Sure, random mid execs in a grain and textile company, whatever. Managing Directors for Operations for copyright attack dogs, no.

Comment: Re:why just 5 mod points aren't going to cut it (Score 1) 436

by TaoPhoenix (#48503405) Attached to: Supreme Court To Decide Whether Rap Lyric Threats Are Free Speech

"And this is why just 5 mod points aren't going to cut it."

Weird - this story?!

And there are over 130 of those spam posts... that's far more than I've seen in a *long* time!

They need to downmod those at the admin level with a script so you can save your legit mod points for good things!

Comment: Re:General Fund (Score 1) 54

by TaoPhoenix (#47996619) Attached to: Stanford Promises Not To Use Google Money For Privacy Research

" If all money goes into a general fund, there's no distinguishing "whose" money it is..."

Sounds to me like an easy accounting exercise.

So don't put it in a general fund. Make a Restricted Account for privacy research. Then when you do privacy research, just make sure it comes from there and only there. Also make sure none of Google's money gets in there. Standard GAAP should handle that like a snap.

"Money" sounds "fungible", but it's not. In many ways, "money" = "$ combined with the source and destination". Or you can do it in reverse, and make Google's money a Restricted Account, and run it backwards in that general fund money can fund anything, but pulling Google's money needs a senior management review that it is "not reasonably construed" as privacy research.

And yes, get Legal on this. Because for example you can tweak a footnote of almost anything to "improve privacy" even if the original research was "Study of Seattle's laws penalizing food wastes in trash."

The world is just becoming messy because those old fluid "neutral zones" are closing up and Flannery O'Connor was right, "everything that rises must converge".

Comment: Re:could be used therapeutically (Score 4, Insightful) 57

by TaoPhoenix (#47472415) Attached to: Biofeedback Games and The Placebo Effect

The Placebo Effect is just our poor bodies reaching some limits vs more and more clever scientific studies.

As I understood it, it was self healing abilities only triggered by "someone gives a damn about me" that we don't easily access every day to fix other problems.

So having computer programs just goes more towards the whole "look, it's now on a computer" we've seen in darker scenarios. I'll stay positive on this note.

If you just stick 300 fortune cookies into a computer program, a few of them will strike home and then you get "therapeutic benefit". (I know, because I have a file of over a hundred of them, from asking my Chinese restaurant to give me a bunch each time. A few of them are really pretty good.)

Studies keep trying to go super narrow to carefully limit "complexity" but I am beginning to think the "Scientific Method" is on the verge of missing "Emergent Results" when they risk small details but leave behind controlling micro-scenarios.

Sideways from the Slashdot tradition, I didn't read the article because one look at the summary says it's too narrow, and it's become the Press's job to "expand them". Some journalists try hard, a few are hacks.

Much more broadly, I have smashed together a few projects I know have helped me.

Comment: Re:8 character min (Score 1) 280

by TaoPhoenix (#47472297) Attached to: Selectively Reusing Bad Passwords Is Not a Bad Idea, Researchers Say

Again a guess, but I bet this is about "how much it costs us to upgrade our system".

Underscore I can see, but Space used to be a character that messed up a lot of systems. And I frankly don't have any 20 character passwords, so maybe people lowered it so that users would have any hope of ever remembering their password, however bad it may be.

Comment: Re: 11 characters (Score 1) 280

by TaoPhoenix (#47472279) Attached to: Selectively Reusing Bad Passwords Is Not a Bad Idea, Researchers Say

Quick uninformed guess, sounds like someone's sloppy programming problem.

I'll defer to my betters here but it sounds like when someone slammed out the system they just picked some number like 11 for the password length and then someone else did the best they could by making it require lots of stuff.

If you didn't have to work so hard, you'd have more time to be depressed.