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Comment No, you don't have to add a bios chip (Score 2) 238

You're wrong.

The parameters can be set by the bootloader and a digitally signed. There is no need to make 3 different chips for 3 different units. Just put the parameters in a payload with the target serial number then digitally sign it.

Then in secure code (either in ROM or loaded from flash by a ROM and checked before running) you load those parameters into the radio before proceeding.

This would add no cost (or trivial at best). All you need is an unchangeable unique ID. Everything else can be in the existing flash storage. It would add some complexity.

Why would a manufacturer do this? Because the FCC would mandate it.

You do not need a separate firmware for the radio, you design the radio so that these values become read-only after set. Then the entire driver can be modifiable (open source) it just can't modify that data.

This can be done relatively simply and for no additional cost. So no, the FCC wouldn't be banning open source, simply changing how the systems which use open source must work. And in a way that is really easy to roll out.

Comment they don't ban installation of open source (Score 3, Informative) 238

It simply requires the hardware to be designed such that if you install open source, you cannot modify the radio to use frequency bands and powers that it is not supposed to use.

And this is easy to do. Just put in settings to limit power and lock out bands and make those settings irreversible until a full system reset. Then make the bootloader set those settings before running the installed OS.

Then the OS can be open source.

It would be absolutely fantastic if people would be rational about tech news. Tech people/netizens are starting to sound like my grandfather now. Every change is something to be feared. OBAMA IS GOING TO TAKE YOUR GUNS! The people running the FCC are people, just like you. They aren't demons or out to get you. Try to work with other people you haven't met instead of exhibiting xenophobia.

Comment in the UK it would be fibre (Score 1) 135

In the UK openreach VDSL is called "fibre". Here it is called "superfast fibre". As if "up to" 80mbit DSL is superfast.


And it's common to do this in some other places in Europe.

It makes AT&T's fibs about their service look like small potatoes.

Comment it could affect all drives equally (Score 1) 184

But it doesn't have to. If a drive were to implement TRIM by doing absolutely nothing (which is completely within spec) then it wouldn't show the problem, but it doesn't mean the drive is better than another or the other drive has a fault.

It's quite possible that the way IBM implements TRIM is just a little different. Perhaps they defer it for a few ms or something. So the bug is occurring over and over but it doesn't show itself with corruption.

Yes, assuming that because you can reproduce it on Samsung drives it must be a Samsung bug is confirmation bias.

Comment They may install twisted pair runs? (Score 1) 56

Please don't install 2M new twisted pair runs. This is an awful idea. Fiber is cheap. Coax is pretty cheap. And both are far faster and more flexible than twisted pair.

What twisted pair is really good for (outside of the house) wireless is good at too. So install something better if you really want to upgrade versus just running 4G service.

Do not install new DSL wires. It'd be a tragedy.

Comment Re:How about Cisco and NSA backdoor? (Score 2) 56

That's not a Cisco backdoor.

That's a NSA backdoor the NSA installed by intercepting the units and installing their own hardware.

This is significantly different than a backdoor from the manufacturer which would be in all devices. That is if indeed that does exist in Huawei equipment. The Western media reports so breathlessly on Chinese companies that it's hard to tell what has basis in fact and what is just rumor.

Comment and don't forget rent control (Score 4, Insightful) 940

Rent control makes it harder to make money offering an apartment for rent (or at least not as much as you can get by selling it out). So owners are incentivized to take housing off the rental market and sell it instead.

Sure, they try to make that harder too. But the owner can always kick tenants out to move in himself/herself. And so that's what's happening now. Owner kicks out tenants to occupy it. Then they later can sell it.

And they can even AirBNB it while "occupying" it.

Comment why stream them when you can download them? (Score 1) 86

Good question. If there were an answer to it I think the industry would be in a different spot than it is.

It turns out customers greatly prefer streaming music (essentially paying per-play) to buying it. Music downloading is down and streaming is up.

Comment it's still the labels (Score 1) 260

If you pay streaming royalties it behooves you to do some protection of the content so that it really is just streaming, not downloading. If you think it doesn't behoove you, then the content providers will ring up up and change your mind for you.

As to the vendor lock-in, that's separate. And it's Apple's policy it seems. So I just get all my music from Google and Amazon instead. And Spotify I guess. Problem solved. I have to give up AppleTV compatibility but I gain compatibility with my Android devices and (in the case of Google and Amazon) the ability to play music right in a browser.

"Don't tell me I'm burning the candle at both ends -- tell me where to get more wax!!"