Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Deal of the Day - 6 month subscription of Pandora One at 46% off. ×

Comment Re:Digging up some history... (Score 1) 262

I worked at IBM at the time (I designed and wrote a good chunk of the C/C++ compiler back-end used for OS/2), and this is quite true -- but it was aided and abetted by IBMs inability to sell OS/2 outside their traditional corporate markets. OS/2 is sadly dead and not relevant today, and has been in this state since at least 1995.

That compiler was an interesting story -- we (the OS/2 back-end team) were told to write an RPG compiler back end for OS/2 (this was back in 1989). That didn't seem like much fun, but the IR (W-Code) was the same as the one used by the C & C++ compilers for the mainframes. So we decided to make the back-end support C & C++ too -- because that *was* fun. When there was the falling out between MS and IBM, we had a working C and C++ compiler for OS/2. I can still remember getting hello.c running, then dhrystone, and not much later bootstrapping the compiler itself.

That was a long time ago.

Comment How many times are you searching? (Score 1) 82

If we define the genome being searched as the pool, and the string being searched for as the key; The paper could be completely correct when there is no reuse of the pool or keys. If you search the same pool for multiple different keys I can think of ways to pre-process the pool such that the first search + pre-process time still obeys the performance constraints their paper outlines, but subsequent searches of the same pool for a different key could happen in O log n time, or even constant time.

Comment Re:Be hostile back ... (Score 2) 124

I think the grandparent post is completely wrong. We need to fight this on 2 fronts: Technically with encryption *everywhere* (even dram contents -- a DMA controller / IO processor should *never* see plaintext), and politically -- advocating against the surveillance state, voting for politicians who reign it in where ever possible.

(In Canada, in my opinion, this means your obvious choice in the next election is the NDP. They took Alberta, they can take Ottawa.)

Breaking the "rules" as the grandparent post advocates will be *very* counter productive, and will only invite *more* abuses, not less.

Comment Re:need moar encryption (Score 2) 124

Even the *cables* and patch cords can have bugs hidden in the connectors. Trust *nothing*. Encrypt everything -- I think outside sram caches on the CPU there should be no unencrypted data at all -- even dram contents should be encrypted.

Of course Key generation and distribution will be the soft underbelly for NSA, CSEC, GCHQ et al to feast on.

But as you point out, give yourself the "reasonable expectation of privacy" that encrypting everything will allow you to claim in court. Force them to tip their hand with actions. Make "parallel" construction so hard it looks laughably obvious. Make un-targeted surveillance prohibitively expensive. Make targeted spying hard enough and costly enough that they'll only use it against real adversaries and not their own citizens and dissidents / political opposition.

It seems to be the only answer and the only way we'll hold on to the freedoms that so many of our grandparents fought, bled, and died for.

Comment Re:need moar encryption (Score 1) 124

Lrf, lbh unir gb rapelcg rirelguvat orpnhfr lbh pna'g rira gehfg n argjbex lbh pbzcyrgryl pbageby -- gurer ner ohttrq pnoyrf (rgurearg naq hfo) naq onpx-qbbef va ebhgref rgp. Rira vs gur jubyr guvat vf haqre lbhe pbageby, lbh unir gb rapelcg nyy qngn -- ng erfg be va-zbgvba. V ZVTUG gehfg gur ba-puvc pnpurf, ohg qenz fubhyq or rapelcgrq nybat jvgu rirelguvat ryfr. Bs pbhefr xrl trarengvba naq qvfgevohgvba jvyy or gur fbsg haqreoryyl.

Comment Re:Impossible with #6 or lesser shotgun shot (Score 4, Insightful) 528

He was using #8 shot. The range with a 30 degree muzzle elevation for #8 is 100 yards. If the drone was at 200 feet altitude, and that much downrange (angle would be 45 degrees) the distance would be just under 100 yards -- I think if the altitude of 200 is correct (big if) these tables show that it was at the very limit of the range of #8 shot. I think it's far more likely that the drone was at around 100 feet or less above ground, and within 100 to 150 feet of the shooter. Even aviation grade barometric altimeters are often out by as much as 25 feet, and must be set for the ambient pressure (which drifts).

Comment Re:Impossible with #6 or lesser shotgun shot (Score 2) 528

He was using #8 birdshot. The lead of #8 shot are *tiny* little balls. -- around 1mm in size. I've been hit by falling #8 shot -- feels like light rain. It loses it's energy to air resistance very quickly. 200 feet of altitude, plus around that much downrange distance makes the range around 280 -- it seems unlikely for #8 shot to do much damage at that range. Altitude is hard to measure with accuracy without using a radar altimeter (calibrated at that) -- GPS is +- 100 feet at best in altitude. Aviation grade barometric can be +- 25 feet, assuming the reference pressure is set accurately, *and* the ambient pressure does not drift (which it always does -- and why pilots always adjust their altimeter to the setting for a given airport -- the tower always includes that setting when talking to an incoming aircraft.) Video evidence from the drone, along with camera information (FOV, focal length) would allow a far more accurate determination. So where is the video?

Comment Re:"Saving Lives" is their claimed priority... (Score 2) 91

I'm Canadian -- I can't vote in American elections.

I can and do vote here in Canada, and in our upcoming election we have an option (NDP) who have promised to repeal the horribly flawed bill C51 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-terrorism_Act,_2015). I encourage all like minded Canadians to get out and vote this fall.

Comment Re:"Saving Lives" is their claimed priority... (Score 2) 91

I didn't say it wasn't getting better (mainly through better safety features and better design in cars), but that spending money on the security state is an incredibly inefficient way to make people safer and save lives. Doing almost anything *other* than just lighting the money on fire (you know -- sending a message :-) would likely be a more effective way to make people safer.

A failure will not appear until a unit has passed final inspection.