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Comment: Swift Popular? (Score 0) 315

by Alex Kasa (#47560247) Attached to: Programming Languages You'll Need Next Year (and Beyond)
How do we even know it's going to be popular in the first place? Does it solve any problem I can't do with C# or Python and/or on more platforms? It'll be a language for little hipsters who hope to be the next Steve Jobs by releasing yet another crappy useless iOS app. I don't know anyone who still bothers with iOS apps.

Comment: Metal Gear Prophecies (Score 1) 1374

by Alex Kasa (#46890585) Attached to: "Smart" Gun Seller Gets the Wrong Kind of Online Attention
I'm always amazes me how more or less everything Hideo Kojima imagines for his Metal Gear Solid series actually ends up existing in one way or the other. In MGS4 virtually all guns have such a security feature (except it's enabled by nano-technology, not watches). This leads to the existence of weapon-launderers who can disable these security features. The UN troops end up getting screwed when the arch-villain hacks the network and disables all their guns. He then pretty much pwns the world (until Solid Snake kicks his ass yet again).

Comment: What's to see? (Score 1) 83

by Alex Kasa (#46847493) Attached to: Man Builds DIY Cellphone Using Raspberry Pi
I'm a second year student of Ethical Hacking. About a quarter of my class chose to do the "Raspberry Pi" project this year, where most of us successfully came up with basically that very same device (minus the touchscreen, our uni doesn't have any, although I can't imagine it would take us more than a couple of weeks of hacking at it to have decent touchscreen support). Mine also has Metasploit and can launch attacks in response to phone call/SMS :) So yeah about 20 second year students this year, probably about 20 in each batch previous years for a few years did this. We didn't make it to Slashdot :'(

Comment: Re:I read the Onion, I thought it was a joke (Score 4, Insightful) 91

by Alex Kasa (#43681403) Attached to: How the Syrian Electronic Army Hacked The Onion
While I get your point, and agree with you, you seem to have a wildly inaccurate view of what life in Syria was before the civil war. While you would not necessarily stand in the central square of Damascus and shout insults to the regime, you could still express your political opinions freely. Not all the media was state-controlled. Before the revolution, access to the internet was open and not censored.

Middle-East != North Korea

You and your family would not get beheaded in public under Assad for talking against the regime. It is quite ironic that Assad was actually quite a progressive leader compared to the US allies in the region (USA's Best Friends Forever Saudi Royal Family and Mubarak). While my whole heart goes to anyone seeking true democracy, a lot of the reason why Syria is in such a mess is because Assad is an Iranian ally supporting Hezbollah, and Israel and the West want that support for Hezbollah and Iran to go.

Of course now Assad has crossed the line and there is only one way this will stop, he must go one way or the other. Only thing US and Israel didn't seem to calculate at first is that what's going to come after him is much, much less friendly. They're just starting to realize that now. As one commentator put it, "The Muslim Brotherhood leadership is waiting in hotels in Turkey, ready to take the reins once Assad is gone". Once again, we've played a role in overthrowing a secular regime and replacing it with an Islamist one. We're getting good at this.

However you are right that many middle-easterners "don't get" western humor. Some see things like that and believe it is serious. Also, while here in the west you can openly joke about religion and God (even Christianity), they would not think those kind of things are funny. As usual, we say we're right and they're wrong. Truth is it's just a cultural difference and cultures are bound to clash in an open world with an open internet. It's not just between Westerners and Middle-Easterners though. I'm sure Chinese people look at American shows and think "WTF is honey boo boo? Jersey shore? USA dogs!"

The meat is rotten, but the booze is holding out. Computer translation of "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak."