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Comment: Re:Nice! I was one of the ones hit by these charge (Score 1) 50

by squiggleslash (#48640867) Attached to: T-Mobile To Pay $90M For Unauthorized Charges On Customers' Bills

At least you got some unsolicited text messages ;-) Most victims of this scheme, my wife included, never even got that. There was literally no connection between activity on our accounts and the unauthorized charges.

To this day I find it unfathomable T-Mobile would allow any company to add charges to one of their customer's bills on their say-so. At the very least, I'd expect a "Show an example of a text message FROM customer TO creditor" requirement, something T-Mobile (and apparently the other companies to, according to Legere) never bothered to require.


Comment: Re:How naive... (Score 4, Insightful) 83

Your use of the term "naive" suggests you think it's designed that way due to conspiracy.

SS7 is a protocol designed to do all these things because it's designed to manage the phone network. That's it's job. If it didn't do those things, it couldn't be used to route phone calls.

Does it have poor security? Yes in the 2014 world, but at the time it was developed virtually every phone company was a monopoly, and it was just assumed only a small handful of easily accountable giant telcos, usually only one in each nation, would ever use it directly. You might just as well criticize non-networked single-user circa-1977 CP/M for not having logins and user/group ownership of files.

Comment: Newtonian physics works (Score 2) 175

by DrYak (#48636021) Attached to: Quantum Physics Just Got Less Complicated

Newtonian physics looks kind of logical. It's completely wrong, but plenty of decisions are based on it. Despite that we know is wrong

It's not *completely* wrong.
In fact back then when it was discovered, it was experimentally proven to work within the parameters which were tested.

The reason it was used then and is still used now is that within this range of parameters, it still works. For everyday use, what newtonian predicts is within what is observed. That's a precise enough model.

What happened is that scientists started to consider much more extreme paramters range (higher energy, faster speed). At that point, newtonian physics breaks down. Does it mean that all the past results were wrong ? No it simply means that it's a model which is only works within a certain range of parameter (it's good for everyday use - you car) if you need to consider parameters outside this range (space ships, planets) you need a better model (general relativity, etc.)

- with Newtonian physics we speak about a physicis model. About a model that's used to approximate real-world events. This kind of things only get experimental proof (prediction fits the measured data or not). And will eventually get superseded by a better model which works better including for some corner cases or at higher range, smaller scales, etc. (String theory and such were born as a tentative at a better model than the dichotomy between relativity and quantum mechanics).

- with TFA: it's a bout a *mathematical proof* that 2 different models are really actually the same stuff just expressed in different ways. Take one model, tweak the equations, and you should obtain the other model. It doesn't speak about the quality of the models themselves, just the mathematical links between them.
(I fact, the quantum mechanics model has its limitation - what you call "wrong" and what I call "use it only within the range of value where it works the best.
QM works best at predict very small scale phenomena (particles, waves, etc.). QM completely sucks at being useful for anything at the other end of the scale: QM is a piece of shit for astronomy. And vice versa: relativity is good when you consider stars, useless when you consider particles. 2 models, each best at a different scale. And strings being a possible future model that could simultaneously work at both scales.). ...but usually, when you have a newer model, that is better experimentally, you usually also need to find a mathematical "link" between the two, an explanation why the old model used to work and only got contradicted in your experiment.
e.g.: take the relativity equations, and use them to compute the motion of your car - the level of energy and speed are so small, that all the "weird parts" of relativity can be approximated and rounded to 0, what remains ends up looking exactly like newtonian physics. Newtonions physicics are the same, simply with the relativity parts neglected, because they don't play any significant role at that scale.

Science constantly bases decisions on kinda logical principles until those principles are proven to be wrong.

Newtonian physics looks "kind of logic" because it's a model designed and tested and proven to predict a range of events (reasonable speed, low energy, human-size scale instead of particles, etc.) which happens to match what our monkey-brain have evolved to cope with.
(our ancestrors never had to think about nuclear bombs, supernovae, tunnel effect in electronics, etc.)
That's also why it got discovered first (we didn't first invent relativistic physics and the newtonian as handy simplified formula for some type of problems), because that's what was easiest for our monkey-brain to think about.

Comment: Science, bitches, that's *how* it works! (Score 5, Informative) 175

by DrYak (#48635149) Attached to: Quantum Physics Just Got Less Complicated

"wave-particle duality is simply the quantum uncertainty principle" gets a "no shit" straight away from me, though I guess a rigorous proof of it is kind of news.

That's how science work. You don't base your decision on the mere principle that it more or less looks kind of logical.
(After all, it only looks "kind of logical" to your *brain*, which has spent the last few million years being optimized to help bipedal monkey survive together in the savanah. Actual science can some time feel "weird" and defy logic, because it defies the monkey-brain logic. - e.g.: the sum of all positive integer is a negative fraction)

You do thoroughly prove that by the numbers.
Yes, the double-slit experiment (where single particle behave like waves) strongly suggest that the uncertainty principle is at work (there's not *a signle photon* going through the slits, it's instead a function showing the distribution of the probabilities to pick it up at a certain place).
Now, we have mathematical proof that's indeed the case.

Science: the only place where it's actually correct to spend the time and mental ressource to formally prove that water *is* wet, and fire *does* burn. Because, along the way, you develop mathematical tools which come handy to do more advanced science.

Comment: Re:Wow. This whole sorry clusterfuck sucks (Score 1) 526

by squiggleslash (#48633937) Attached to: FBI Confirms Open Investigation Into Gamergate

Most of the people I've seen speaking out against GG seem to be the politcally correct thought police

Or... the loudest voices against GG have been those targetted by GG, who by and large are people seen by GG to be Feminists and widely misrepresented as a thought police rather than people sharing concerns they have about sexism.

Comment: Re:harassment attribution (Score 2) 526

by squiggleslash (#48633881) Attached to: FBI Confirms Open Investigation Into Gamergate

You've just proven it's easy to convince yourself of something that's obviously not true simply by creating a narrative and tying some minor details into it.

Sarkeesian needs to screenshot a Twitter user who over the last few minutes is sending her death threats. She's getting notifications every few seconds from Twitter on her mobile device, presumably her phone. She knows how to make a screenshot on a computer, and it'll capture more tweets than the four or five you can typically see on a mobile phone, so she fires up a web browser, goes to the Twitter URL of the harasser who's still in the process of sending her death threats, hits Ctrl-PtSc, and then sends the screenshot somewhere.

Completely normal. Exactly what you'd expect someone to do (I know it's technically possible to take a screenshot on your phone, but (1) you won't get many tweets and (2) personally I don't actually know how to do it, if I were in the same situation I'd have to Google for the information.)

Your idiot evidence tries to make every element of this suspicious. They... *gasp* went to a PC they weren't logged into to make the screenshot. They *horror* didn't wait until the death threat stream had finished before making the screenshot, meaning some were coming in seconds before she took it! Because you've decided she must be making this up, you've had to invent a ridiculous narrative involving tablets and logging out of PCs that has Sarkeesian apparently unaware she can have two browsers on the PC that has a keyboard.

What's even more bizarre is you make these allegations while GamerGate simultaneously acknowledges that Sarkeesian does, actually, get death threats all the time. The GG "Anti-Harassment Patrol" even trumpeted it's "success" at finding a certain Brazillian journalist who is one source of anti-Sarkeesian death threats, and got terribly upset when Sarkeesian said "Yes, I know, I've already reported him" and spun it as "Sarkeesian refuses to report harasser we found!!!1!!"

GamerGate is about harassment. Stop trying to cover it up.

Comment: Re:Hardware keyboards not the issue with Blackberr (Score 1) 123

by squiggleslash (#48633733) Attached to: Review: The BlackBerry Classic Is One of the Best Phones of 2009

Android phone makers experimented with physical keyboards for a while, and lately seem to have decided to just issue the same bland iPhone-but-with-Android form factors and forget about being innovative in that area.

I hope BlackBerry stays relevent enough to undo that and get manufacturers looking at text input again. The current situation may suit many, but I see a 50/50 split between people who are happy with Swype-like text input, and people who really prefer the accuracy of physical push buttons. Me, I'm generally OK with the former, but want to have the latter to fall back on.

Comment: astroturf (Score 3, Insightful) 453

by Ungrounded Lightning (#48633483) Attached to: Colorado Sued By Neighboring States Over Legal Pot

As you can see, the moderation converged on a more proper +5 Insightful

  I've read the post carefully and it doesn't qualify as Flamebait IMHO. It states a controversial political opinion and thus invites a discussion, which may lead to flamage, but does not itself lead with a flame.

So this looks like someone who doesn't like the position trying to suppress it, by hitting it with the most plausible -1, in the hope that one more like-minded person will have mod points and get it suppressed before very many people see it. That works for "politically incorrect" subjects (such as criticisms of the "heat death of the Earth, everybody panic and suppress technology" interpretation of climate data), where a crowd of like-minded free speech haters are ready to suppress opposing opinions. But pro-pot doesn't appear to attract that much system-gaming opposition.

Right now it only takes two downmods to hide a non-anonymous itme. It seems to me that we have enough people willing to moderate that it's time to scale up the mod system, so a small astroturf operation can't shut down debate. Say: double it: Mods get 10 points, -2 hides, non-anynomous starts at +2, high-karma at +4, doulble everybody's current karma and readjust the cutpoints for bonuses, caps, and the like. That would mean it would take two moderators to suppress a anonymous post and four for authors willing to risk reputation. (It would also mean more work for those who are willing to moderate - but they might be more willing to spend a point if they had more to spend.)

Comment: Re:harassment attribution (Score 2) 526

by squiggleslash (#48633409) Attached to: FBI Confirms Open Investigation Into Gamergate

What's happening here is the standard (especially in GG) circle-j where GamerGaters theorize that something is a "false flag", then someone digs out some minor coincidence, KIA has a field day and declares that the case has been proven, and nobody there revisits the issue, usually genuinely shocked that anyone would disagree.

I'm _still_ arguing with people who think (or claim to think) that Nathan Grayson wrote anything at all as a result of his fling with "LW1" [the GamerGate term for their primary target, who isn't a journalist FWIW. The women herself has suffered enough harassment, so I'll subvert this term to actually avoid mentioning her by name respecting her wish she be kept out of it.] They read Grayson did, they've only listened to people who said he did, as far as they're concerned it's true, and no amount of "OK, point me at the articles he supposedly wrote" will change that. Given this is the original attempt to redefine GamerGate as an "ethics" campaign, something even this story has fallen for, that's a pretty bad thing.

Another example:

1. Eron Gjoni initially tried to post his revenge-ex "tell all" about "LW1", to the forums of Something Awful. SA deleted it immediately and banned Gjoni.
2. Gjoni shops around, finally finding 4chan tolerates it long enough to stir up support from various anti-women trolls (well, it's 4chan, of course they're trolls.) Yadayadayada Adam Baldwin yadayadayadayada front page of New York Times, article about GamerGate's harassment and death threat campaign.
3. Goons (SA's term for forum members) discussing the trainwreck on Something Awful's forums notice the New York Times is covering a controversy that started at... Something Awful and post words to the effect of "What started here ended up on the NYT!"

So what happened then? Well, GamerGate developed a consensus, immediately, without any evidence whatsoever beyond forgetting, somehow, that SA was where Gjoni started trying to destroy "LW1", that Something Awful was behind all the death threats and was making them to make GamerGate look bad.

Because that totally makes sense. One, out of context, forum comment, with no actual quotes from SA members organizing this shadow campaign.

I mention this because it's one case where you specifically see the mindset. Something is "proven" because it gets repeated within KIA enough that it becomes an unquestioned fact. This is how GG holds on to its useful idiots long enough for them to make idiots of themselves.

Comment: Gun practice teaches calm - biofeedback style. (Score 2) 568

by Ungrounded Lightning (#48631389) Attached to: Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

Have you seen people drive? Road rage? Now think many of these same people with guns.

Target range practice is a very powerful biofeedback mechanism for teaching the suppression of the production of adrenaline and of all symptoms of excitement. Aligning gun sights - a pair of visual targets separated by about the length of the gun barrel (inches, a foot, or several feet), aligning them with a target (at tens of feet), and holding the alignment, gives visibility to even microscopic tremors and movement. Getting the image right and stable means drastically suppressing this movement. Over a number of range sessions, this leads to learning how to be icy calm, as a reflex, in the midst of a very stressful environment (full of intermittent explosions, bright lights, acrid smells, and odd-temperature winds).

(The effect is extreme. It was discovered that good target shooters, thinking they were just controlling their breath, had actually learned to "stop their heartbeat" - compressing the time between the pairs of beats before and after firing a shot and doubling the time between beats during the trigger pull.)

The result is that, after just a few good sessions, this becomes imprinted. Even in a rage, putting your hand on a gun drops you into that icy calm state.

Comment: Re:Unrelated to Github (Score 1) 144

by spitzak (#48631239) Attached to: Critical Git Security Vulnerability Announced

No, stop being an idiot.

"regular users" click on files in a list or 2-d grid. They would not even notice if the filesystem allowed more than one file with the same name, and the certainly do not give a damn about case insensitivity. Even if they type at a terminal they use filename-completion and do not care either.

It is also clear that it has nothing to do with user-friendliness or they would map more common errors, such as multiple spaces to single ones, removing leading and trailing whitespace, or mapping equivalent unicode to the same files. They don't do this because they realize that such complex details of the encoding do not belong in the file system api.

Case-insensitivity is a throwback to ancient ASCII-only systems. If you live in the stone age you may think it is a good idea. If you have been exposed to it all your life you may think it is a good idea. But if you were actually intelligent you would know it is wrong.

Comment: Re:I blame Microsoft (Score 1) 144

by spitzak (#48631219) Attached to: Critical Git Security Vulnerability Announced

No. Two different byte strings should identify two different files (unless one or both of them are invalid byte streams). Anything else is introducing complexity into the filesystem and potential bugs and security violations, of which this it an excellent example. Sorry, but Unix has it right, and Microsoft and lots of other systems are *WRONG*.

"It's what you learn after you know it all that counts." -- John Wooden