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Comment: About time! (Score 1) 1

About time the motion-picture media really started to look at the rich, rich work of PKD. Though he may have had temporal lobe epilepsy with consequent hypergraphia, he managed to put down some of his own mind's fascinating dreamlike states. Whatever made him unique, we're lucky to have had him. The Man in the High Castle is one of his more grounded stories; a good first chance to get the reader to know him without anything too exotic to frighten him off. (I am reminded of Baudelaire's piece in Paris Spleen, "The Dog and the Scent Bottle", in which he asserts the public should never be given "delicate perfumes to infuriate them".) What I wouldn't give to see The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch" in the cinema!

+ - Ask Slashdot: After TrueCrypt->

Submitted by TechForensics
TechForensics (944258) writes "(Resubmitted because was not identified as "Ask Slashdot"

We all know the TrueCrypt story-- a fine, effective encryption program beginning to achieve wide use. When you see how the national security agency modified this tool so they could easily overcome it, you'll probably understand why they don't complain about PGP anymore. The slip that showed what was happening was the information that NSA "were really ticked about TrueCrypt" either because they couldn't circumvent it or found it too difficult. From the standpoint of privacy advocates, NSA's dislike for TrueCrypt was evidence it was effective.

Next, NSA directly wrapped up the makers of TrueCrypt in legal webs that made them insert an NSA backdoor and forbade them from revealing it was there. It's only because of the cleverness of the TrueCrypt makers the world was able to determine for itself that TrueCrypt was now compromised. (Among other things, though formerly staunch privacy advocates, the makers discontinued development of TrueCrypt and recommended something like Microsoft Bitlocker, which no one with any sense believes could be NSA – hostile. It then became logically defensible, since NSA was not complaining about PGP or other encryption programs, to posit they had already been compromised.

This is the situation we have: all of the main are important encryption programs are compromised at least in use against the federal government. Whether NSA tools are made available to local law enforcement is not known. This all begs the question:

Does the public now have *any* encryption that works? Even if we can see the source code of the encryption algorithm the source code of the program employing that algorithm must be considered false. (TrueCrypt was the only program NSA complained about.) In the case of other software, it becomes believable the NSA has allowed to be published only source code that hides their changes, and the only way around that may be to check and compile the published code yourself. Half the public probably doesn't bother.

Okay, Slashdot, what do you think? Where do we stand? And what ought we to do about it?We all know the TrueCrypt story-- a fine, effective encryption program beginning to achieve wide use. When you see how the national security agency modified this tool so they could easily overcome it, you'll probably understand why they don't complain about PGP anymore. The slip that showed what was happening was the information that NSA "were really ticked about TrueCrypt" either because they couldn't circumvent it or found it too difficult. From the standpoint of privacy advocates, NSA's dislike for TrueCrypt was evidence it was effective.

Next, NSA directly wrapped up the makers of TrueCrypt in legal webs that made them insert an NSA backdoor and forbade them from revealing it was there. It's only because of the cleverness of the TrueCrypt makers the world was able to determine for itself that TrueCrypt was now compromised. (Among other things, though formerly staunch privacy advocates, the makers discontinued development of TrueCrypt and recommended something like Microsoft Bitlocker, which no one with any sense believes could be NSA–hostile. It then became logically defensible, since NSA was not complaining about PGP or other encryption programs, to posit they had already been vitiated.

This is the situation we have: all of the main or important encryption programs are compromised at least in use against the federal government. Whether NSA tools are made available to local law enforcement is not known. This all begs the question:

Does the public now have *any* encryption that works? Even if we can see the source code of the encryption algorithm the source code of the program employing that algorithm must be considered tainted. (TrueCrypt was the only program NSA complained about.) In the case of other software, it becomes believable the NSA has allowed to be published only source code that hides their changes, and the only way around that may be to check and compile the published code yourself. Half the public probably doesn't bother. (Would it not be possible for the NSA to create a second TrueCrypt that has the same hash value as the original?)

Okay, Slashdot, what do you think? Where do we stand? And what ought we to do about it?"

Link to Original Source

+ - Is encryption for the public now a myth?

Submitted by TechForensics
TechForensics (944258) writes "We all know the TrueCrypt story-- a fine, effective encryption program beginning to achieve wide use. When you see how the national security agency modified this tool so they could easily overcome it, you'll probably understand why they don't complain about PGP anymore. The slip that showed what was happening was the information that NSA "were really ticked about TrueCrypt" either because they couldn't circumvent it or found it too difficult. From the standpoint of privacy advocates, NSA's dislike for TrueCrypt was evidence it was effective.

Next, NSA directly wrapped up the makers of TrueCrypt in legal webs that made them insert an NSA backdoor and forbade them from revealing it was there. It's only because of the cleverness of the TrueCrypt makers the world was able to determine for itself that TrueCrypt was now compromised. (Among other things, though formerly staunch privacy advocates, the makers discontinued development of TrueCrypt and recommended something like Microsoft Bitlocker, which no one with any sense believes could be NSA – hostile. It then became logically defensible, since NSA was not complaining about PGP or other encryption programs, to posit they had already been vitiated.

This is the situation we have: all of the main are important encryption programs are compromised at least in use against the federal government. Whether NSA tools are made available to local law enforcement is not known. This all begs the question:

Does the public now have *any* encryption that works? Even if we can see the source code of the encryption algorithm the source code of the program employing that algorithm must be considered false. (TrueCrypt was the only program NSA complained about.) In the case of other software, it becomes believable the NSA has allowed to be published only source code that hides their changes, and the only way around that may be to check and compile the published code yourself. Half the public probably doesn't bother.

Okay, Slashdot, what do you think? Where do we stand? And what ought we to do about it?"

+ - ASK SLASHHas encryption for the public been defeated?

Submitted by TechForensics
TechForensics (944258) writes "We all know the TrueCrypt story-- a fine, effective encryption program beginning to achieve wide use. When you see how the national security agency modified this tool so they could easily overcome it, you'll probably understand why they don't complain about PGP anymore. The slip that showed what was happening was the information that NSA "were really ticked about TrueCrypt" either because they couldn't circumvent it or found it too difficult. From the standpoint of privacy advocates, NSA's dislike for TrueCrypt was evidence it was effective.

Next, NSA directly wrapped up the makers of TrueCrypt in legal webs that made them insert an NSA backdoor and forbade them from revealing it was there. It's only because of the cleverness of the TrueCrypt makers the world was able to determine for itself that TrueCrypt was now compromised. (Among other things, though formerly staunch privacy advocates, the makers discontinued development of TrueCrypt and recommended something like Microsoft Bitlocker, which no one with any sense believes could be NSA – hostile. It then became logically defensible, since NSA was not complaining about PGP or other encryption programs, to posit they had already been vitiated.

This is the situation we have: all of the main are important encryption programs are compromised at least in use against the federal government. Whether NSA tools are made available to local law enforcement is not known. This all begs the question:

Does the public now have *any* encryption that works? Even if we can see the source code of the encryption algorithm the source code of the program employing that algorithm must be considered false. (TrueCrypt was the only program NSA complained about.) In the case of other software, it becomes believable the NSA has allowed to be published only source code that hides their changes, and the only way around that may be to check and compile the published code yourself. Half the public probably doesn't bother.

Okay, Slashdot, what do you think? Where do we stand? And what ought we to do about it?"

Comment: As Easy to See Through as Glass (Score 1) 132

Hmmmm.... Let's see... Snowden embarrasses NSA using Tails; suddenly tails has scary "vulnerabilities"; a new company / entity on the scene says it will make everything nice.

What's the likely truth here? Snowden embarrassed NSA using Tails; NSA plants disinformation campaign to the exent of "vulnerabilities"; the new company / entity is an NSA puppet that will give you a new Tails every bit as reliable as the new TrueCrypt.

First grade simple so it's not suspected until..... (complete the sentence).

What do YOU think?

Comment: The SmartWatch is here to stay (Score 1) 427

by TechForensics (#47319837) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Would It Take For You To Buy a Smartwatch?

I already have a smartwatch, but if I didn't these would be the reasons today I would get one:
(These are all real, existing apps.)

App that ..sends slow-scan video to watch from phone or takes and displays pictures ..sends nav screen to watch ..can display forecast, barometric pressure, wind direction and velocity ..gets full weather report ..lets you activate watch features based on a value on the internet e.g. **buy alert** goog is at $450
or "new post on your blog", etc. ..lets you know your phone needs charging ..keeps you on-time with buzzing alarms ..(maybe not yet) tells you if your flight is on time ..displays your track as you wander around hoping to wander back

+ - Lexmark loses Supreme Court case; can be sued by ink cartridge remanufacturers->

Submitted by TechForensics
TechForensics (944258) writes "Lexmark, the hardest-working-to-make-printing-more-expensive manufacturer, lost a round yesterday in the US Supreme Court, which held that ink cartridge remanufacturers can sue for the "I'm A Genuine Lexmark Cartridge" microchip tomfoolery used for years to block remanufactured cartridges on copyright (of the chip) grounds. Lexmark had a consumer program to induce consumers to return their empty cartridges to Lexmark, and a self-destructing authenticity chip to make double sure the reman guys couldn't get it. Handed a stinging defeat in the US Supreme Court, will LEXMARK finally "get it"?"
Link to Original Source

+ - American Judge claims juristiction over data stored in other countries.->

Submitted by sim2com
sim2com (2957539) writes "An American judge has just added another reason why foreign (non-American) companies should avoid using American Internet service companies? Foreign governments will not be happy having their legal jurisdiction trespassed by American courts that force American companies to turn over customers' data stored in their countries.

The question is... who has legal jurisdiction on data stored in a given country? The courts of that country or the courts of the nationality of the company who manages the data storage? This is a matter that has to be decided by International treaties... and while we're at it, let's try to establish an International cyber law enforcement system. In the meantime, I can see a lot of countries unhappy about this development.

The cloud is the future, and the future is now... IF we can all agree on legal jurisdiction over data storage across national borders."

Link to Original Source

+ - 3D-Printed Lens Turns Smartphones Into a £1 Microscope to Detect Diseases->

Submitted by concertina226
concertina226 (2447056) writes "Australian National University (ANU) researchers have used a 3D-printed lens and a Nexus 4 smartphone to create a £1 microscope that can detect skin diseases almost as well as a £300 clinical microscope.

At the moment, conventional lenses are made by either grinding or polishing a flat disk of glass into a particular curved shape – the same way lenses have been made since the 18th century – or by pouring gel-like materials into moulds.

Droplets of clear water are able to bend light and therefore able to act as a lens. The researchers decided to exploit this phenomenon to see just how good a lens they could make.

When they attached the lens to a Nexus 4 smartphone, together with two LEDS to angle the light and a watch battery, the researchers were able to produce a dermascope able to diagnose skin diseases like melanoma."

Link to Original Source

+ - DARPA Develops Stealth Motorcycle for US Special Forces

Submitted by Hugh Pickens DOT Com
Hugh Pickens DOT Com (2995471) writes "Allen McDuffee reports that DARPA is developing a hybrid-powered motorcycle to soundlessly penetrate remote areas and execute complex, lightning-fast raids. The idea is to develop a hybrid power system that relies on both electric and gas power, allowing special ops to go off-road and zip past enemy forces with the silence of an electric engine, while also being able to handle extended missions and higher speeds with a supplemental gas tank. "Quieted, all-wheel-drive capability at extended range in a lightweight, rugged, single-track vehicle could support the successful operations of U.S. expeditionary and special forces in extreme terrain conditions and contested environments,” says Wade Pulliam of Logos Technologies which was awarded a contract for a preliminary design to see just how viable the project is. “With a growing need to operate small units far from logistical support, the military may increasingly rely on adaptable, efficient technologies like this hybrid-electric motorcycle.” Logos plans to fit its quieted, multifuel hybrid-electric power system with an all-electric bike from San Francisco-based manufacturer BRD Motorcycles that uses an existing (and what BRD calls “barely legal”) racing bike, the RedShift MX, a 250-pound all-electric moto that retails for $15,000. The RedShift MX has a two hour range, but will be extended with a gas tank the size of which will be determined by the military in the research period. The focus on the electric element suggests that DARPA is more concerned with the stealthiness of the motorcycle than it is efficiency. “The team is excited to have such a mature, capable system from which to build, allowing an accelerated development cycle that could not be achieved otherwise,” says Pulliam."

+ - Making graphene work for real-world devices->

Submitted by aarondubrow
aarondubrow (1866212) writes "Graphene, a one-atom-thick form of the carbon material graphite, is strong, light, nearly transparent and an excellent conductor of electricity and heat, but a number of practical challenges must be overcome before it can emerge as a replacement for silicon in electronics or energy devices. One particular challenge concerns the question of how graphene diffuses heat, in the form of phonons. Thermal conductivity is critical in electronics, especially as components shrink to the nanoscale. Using the Stampede supercomputer at the Texas Advanced Computing Center, Professor Li Shi simulated how phonons (heat-carrying vibrations in solids) scatter as a function of the thickness of the graphene layers. He also investigated how graphene interacts with substrate materials and how phonon scattering can be controlled. The results were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Applied Physical Letters and Energy and Environmental Science."
Link to Original Source

+ - Ask Slashdot: Limited Electric Computing? 1

Submitted by TechForensics
TechForensics (944258) writes "Limited Electric Computing

In my fifth decade of computing, having thought for some years I'm pretty well equipped to handle whatever comes my way, I realize I'm wholly ignorant about what for some users may be the most important question they have about computing. We have about five PCs in our house, and my wife came forward with a fairly large electric bill and said she wanted to know what part of it was due to running our computers 24 seven and whether buying a lower energy consumption machine or machines might pay for itself in year or so at current electric rates.

I've heard of the "Kill-a-Watt" device, but frankly I'm too old and arthritic to go climbing down among all of our machines. All I want to know are our very best bets for lowest energy consumption cost for our machines, considering that we don't want to wait for reboot upon each seating.

None of our systems does anything but Internet, Excel, and Word processing (with the exception of mine, which does everything, but I'm not really wondering about that.) I build systems easily so I just want to know what processors, monitors and motherboards drink the least juice? I believe I'll set our systems up with normal flatscreen monitors, keyboards and mice. Most of the people in my house need Windows. Is there some wall wart or mini-form factor PC I can buy off the shelf, or should I assemble the best combination of processor, motherboard and monitor? I'm willing to consider large-screen laptops if those would prevent a significant construction project. Of course, we'll have to have a small, always-on solid state file server, to be built out of something like one SSD and a network card.

Limited electric computing – what are the best ideas by Slashdot?"

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