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Comment: Re:It's almost sane(really) (Score 1) 502

by WatchMaster (#47582607) Attached to: Judge: US Search Warrants Apply To Overseas Computers

well this case has nothing to do with warrants, so the analogy is not valid. The legal action is a subpoena, which is a totally different thing. The subpoena directs microsoft representatives to produce documents under their control. No law-enforcement action or searching is involved.

Comment: MIssed point Apples - Oranges (Score 1) 185

by WatchMaster (#47087349) Attached to: R Throwdown Challenge

No one uses R for it's amazing language*. The language sucks. R is used because it has nearly limitless, tested, and approved statistical algorithms. Want partial least squares, support vector machines, linear models, principle components analysis, Fisher's exact test?, they are all there waiting to process your data. Along with hundreds of other analyses that you might really need to use but don't even know about yet.

"Python" doesn't have this stuff because it is a language, not a set of statistical methods.

*there may be a few deviants who use it for self flagellation

Comment: hello, this occurs with swap too (Score 3, Informative) 184

This is true of vi and many other programs. The exact same issue occurs with the swap partition.

Anyone can solve this problem, just mount /tmp and swap using dm-crypt with a new random password every reboot. The partitions are perfectly good while the computer is booted, but are inintelligible afterwards.

Comment: Re:What classified information? (Score 2) 172

by WatchMaster (#37578800) Attached to: State Dept. Employee Investigated For Linking To WikiLeaks

It should lose its classification when it is public knowledge. There is no point in classifying material published in the new york times, or otherwise available to anyone on the planet.

Nearly every non disclosure agreement I've ever seen releases responsibility to keep things secret if the covered information becomes public knowledge through disclosure by others.

Keeping public information "classified" is a 1984-ish way to make everyone a criminal for discussing or "disclosing" state secrets. Now we can all be criminals and be prosecuted arbitrarily at any time.

Comment: Re:oven (Score 2) 1016

by WatchMaster (#37565578) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Way To Destroy Hard Drives?

I've been there. These methods work, and are practical for a reasonably large number of drives:

1) put them in a fire in your fireplace. Most of the thin aluminum will melt leaving just some metallic debris. 100% destroyed. I've done this, it is simple and very effective.

2) drill some holes in them with a drill press, so that holes pass through the platters. Theoretically some data could be recovered although it is very unlikely.

Comment: Re:Could Someone Help Me Out With This? (Score 1) 844

by WatchMaster (#36947998) Attached to: Debt Deal Reached

exactly my point - if you *spend* money (thus helping the economy) you get a deduction (or it reduces profit, or taxable income). If you stuff it in your mattress/coffers you don't.

So if taxes are lower you have more money to spend on buying stuff - which helps other businesses and employment in general.

Comment: Re:Could Someone Help Me Out With This? (Score 1) 844

by WatchMaster (#36947628) Attached to: Debt Deal Reached

wrong. you can't escape any taxes through investment or stuffing money into matresses. Once you get the money you pay corporate tax on it. You do that before you "lock it away".

shareholders expect a year-on-year return, so businesses need to spend money to grow to make them happy. the spending can be in many area - e.g. building new stores, acquiring other companies etc. Companies that don't spend are generally forced by shareholders to disburse any excess cash holdings to the investors, as dividends since most companies are't in business to hoard cash - they are in business to make money for investors (or owners).

Comment: Re:Could Someone Help Me Out With This? (Score 1) 844

by WatchMaster (#36947008) Attached to: Debt Deal Reached

Reagan et al thought that this means that they should lower taxes to make more money in taxes

the concept is that lower taxes encourage business growth, which results in net increase in tax income, from increased profits, and increasing payroll taxes. There is some evidence for this effect.

The key concept is that the economy isn't a "zero sum" game - the economy grows through businesses creating value. For example the microcomputer industry resulted in a huge economic net gain.

FORTRAN is a good example of a language which is easier to parse using ad hoc techniques. -- D. Gries [What's good about it? Ed.]

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