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Comment: Re:Whatever you may think ... (Score 1) 446

by WhiteDragon (#46749447) Attached to: Heartbleed Coder: Bug In OpenSSL Was an Honest Mistake

It would be nice if they had some sort of code review in place for this sort of stuff. However, this isn't a paid project, so the developers writing this are doing arguably the best they can.

The code was reviewed. The commit log shows that the reviewer was Stephen Henson (thanks to slashdot user grub for pointing this out.)


Estonia Sharing Its Finnish-Made E-Government Solution With Finland 83

Posted by timothy
from the circle-arctic-circle dept.
paavo512 writes "For the last decade or so, Estonia has developed a national electronic data exchange layer called X-Road. Is is based on national electronic ID cards and allows creation of common electronic services like founding a company, declaring taxes or e-voting. Every day, over 800,000 enquiries are made via X-Road (the population of Estonia is 1.3M). According to the PM of Estonia, the solution is saving 2% of national GDP annually. The Estonian ID card technology was originally imported from Finland; however, it appears Finns have for 10 years failed to come up with any significant e-services making use of them. So it is now agreed that Estonian X-Road solution will be expanding to Finland as well."

Comment: Re:Awesome (Score 1) 193

by WhiteDragon (#45482015) Attached to: NASA's Next Frontier: Growing Plants On the Moon

Personally I wish we'd just man up and shoot the appropriate organisms into Venus' atmosphere to start the terraforming process.

Because breathable Earth-normal atmosphere is a lifting gas on Venus, we could make a relatively low budget colony without any terraforming. Just send a big balloon. It could ride the relatively stable upper atmospheric winds on Venus, circling the planet every 4 earth days, and be at standard pressure, so any hull breach would not result in explosive decompression.

Comment: Re:Robots.txt (Score 1) 234

by WhiteDragon (#45418933) Attached to: Britain's Conservatives Scrub Speeches from the Internet

The Internet Archive says that it subscribes to the The Oakland Archive Policy which for |requests by governments" says:

Archivists will exercise best-efforts compliance with applicable court orders Beyond that, as noted in the Library Bill of Rights, 'Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.'

Seems like this may just have slipped past them. Let's make sure they know they need to sort it out... Surely they only removed it from the Wayback Machine, not from the archive itself.

That's actually a really good point. I wonder if there's any justification in the Policy for retroactively removing content based on current robots.txt


How an Astronaut Falling Into a Black Hole Would Die Part 2 263

Posted by samzenpus
from the unlikeliest-of-endings dept.
First time accepted submitter ydrozd writes "Until recently, most physicists believed that an observer falling into a black hole would experience nothing unusual when crossing its event horizon. As has been previously mentioned on Slashdot, there is a strong argument, initially based on observing an entangled pair at the event horizon, that suggests that the unfortunate observer would instead be burned up by a high energy quanta (a.k.a "firewall") just before crossing the black hole's event horizon. A new paper significantly improves the argument by removing reliance on quantum entanglement. The existence of black hole "firewalls" is a rare breakthrough in theoretical physics."

Comment: Re:Missing Option (Score 1) 443

by WhiteDragon (#45187549) Attached to: I wish my car could...

I chose Fly Through Space, since that option would also cover Fly.

Well, chucking a car through an airlock would make it "fly through space" but it wouldn't necessarily make it a "flying car" even should it renter Earth's or some other planet's atmosphere.
More like a rapidly disintegrating burning lump of metal.

Everything is air-droppable at least once --Schlock Mercenary

Comment: Re:Why wait for birth? (Score 1) 128

by WhiteDragon (#44802325) Attached to: NIH Studies Universal Genome Sequencing At Birth

I was under the impression that there was a fairly simple amniotic fluid test which reveals gender. I could be wrong, but it seems to me that even if you have to resort to a genetic sample it still doesn't require DNA analysis, just a much simpler check for the existence of a Y chromosome - something that was discovered long before we even had the capacity to read the DNA itself.

However, for most cases, ultrasound is much preferred to drawing amniotic fluid (amniocentesis) due to the risk of introducing infection.

Comment: Re:Email is like sending a postcard (Score 1) 218

by WhiteDragon (#44584595) Attached to: Photocopying Michelle Obama's Diary, Just In Case

Except the USPS scans an image of every piece of mail that it processes, which is then stored in a database that law enforcement can access. So in effect, sending a postcard is very similar to an email, with regards to how the message is intercepted and stored by federal authorities.

My experience working for the USPS was that the images were kept for a very short time (a day or two max) and then deleted. It is possible that law enforcement would be able to get a copy, but they'd have to be quick. In addition, the Postal Inspection Service is pretty serious about postal employees not accessing the mail except as part of doing their jobs, but I don't know whether they give access to law enforcement.

Comment: Re:Email is like sending a postcard (Score 1) 218

by WhiteDragon (#44584521) Attached to: Photocopying Michelle Obama's Diary, Just In Case

On the other hand I think we would be justifiably irate if it turned out that the Post Office was photographing every single postcard and processing the information it contained into a permanent database.

Except that it turns out that the Post Office is actually doing that. It is photographing EVERY piece of mail and processing the information and putting it into a database. I did not examine the articles closely enough to be sure, so I do not know if that includes evaluating what is written on postcards. I suspect not, but I also suspect that the information contained in the article would not have answered the question of whether they do or not.

Postcards are *supposed* to have a designated address area, and a designated text area. That being said, people write all over the whole thing. It can lead to some mis-sorted mail if the address recognition software happens to recognize some of the text instead of the address. The post office does indeed collect images of the front (address side) of all mail, that's how it gets sorted. (OCR, and if the computer can't read it, it goes to a graphical display for a human being to decipher).

Comment: Re:Our culture (Score 1) 1029

In all fairness this is one you can't blame on our culture. Blockbuster movies need to be international. International means they can't have as much culture. Pure action translates well to large audiences worldwide, the more plot the more character the worse it translates.

This one you can blame the 3rd world.

Movies need more action? Reminds me of

"Consistency requires you to be as ignorant today as you were a year ago." -- Bernard Berenson