Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:Yes, trust us. (Score 1) 100

by ballwall (#35291482) Attached to: CIA Shows Off (Formerly) Super-Secret Spy Goodies

Maybe there should be a limit to capitalism. For example, tax 100% of income over, say, $5M/year. That way you still have incentive to work hard, but you have to think long term. Screwing over a bunch of people to get $100M right now won't help you. You need to create something sustainable that will generate income over a lifetime.

Comment: Blackberry + BES Express (Score 4, Informative) 198

by ballwall (#35237722) Attached to: Encrypting Phone Storage and Transmission? (2011 Version)

Set up a BES Express server, and get a BlackBerry. I'm not sure you can find equivalent security on any other platform. The BES Express server (free) offers transparent VPN. The devices themselves are unmatched, security-wise (though you'd be stepping back like 5 years in features). Email might be a problem if you don't want to also run exchange or lotus domino, but you could easily set up an IMAPS server and use that.

Comment: Re:What do you mean by "know better?" (Score 2) 154

by ballwall (#35195220) Attached to: The Dirty Little Secrets of Search

I'm sure it's much more complicated than this, but off the cuff: You need a manual process to find cases like Penney's. Then, when you find a Penney's, you see all the sites linking to Penney's and they immediately become suspect. Not all of them will be selling links, but a lot will be. If you find a few Penney's's you start to build a spamrank(tm), narrowing in on sites that use stuff like TMX. You make outbound link weight inversely proportional to spamrank(tm, remember), and when you cross some line in your spamrank your outbound links become invisible altogether. Permanently. Additionally, the spamrank would add up like pagerank does on the target site and you make spamrank, say, 10x the weight of pagerank. You buy links, you get punished.

But it sounds like Google hates manual processes, they want to fix the algo. I don't see how that's possible without some crazy AI stuff going on (not that they couldn't go that route, mind you). Whereas I (a person) can look at a page and immediately say "link farm," doing that with a computer would likely be crazy difficult. Mostly because the best spam sites are legit sites, they just also sell links.

Speaking as a small business owner it's frustrating as hell. We've tried going to 'SEO' route, but A) there are a ton of super shady businesses out there selling this crap, and B) THIS IS NOT THE WAY IT SHOULD WORK. It's annoying when Blekko has us #1 for almost every related search term, but on google we don't even hit the first page for half of them. And if I take a handful of the people above us, scan their inbound links, the vast majority are all paid links. ARG. (Not that I think blekko has a better long term strategy, I think it's just as easily gamed, it just hasn't been... yet.)

I guess we just need to get as big as stackoverflow and complain, that way we can get customized changes. /END RANT

+ - BlackBerry kills cross platform messaging app Kik->

Submitted by ballwall
ballwall (629887) writes "According to a recent post on their site, Kik, a cross platform messenger, has been blocked from further developing for the BlackBerry platform (including revocation of their signing keys.) The response from RIM doesn't specify what actions other developers can take to avoid such penalties. Kik, once a RIM partner, was lauded at several RIM events. With RIM losing ground to Android and Apple, is now the time to start alienating its allies, or is there more to this story than either company is letting on?"
Link to Original Source

Comment: Mars (Score 1) 662

by ballwall (#33798034) Attached to: Can We Travel To That Exciting New Exoplanet?

Isn't mars in our 'goldilocks zone'? But because it doesn't have a magnetosphere it can't sustain an atmosphere against solar winds? (Not sure, just something I remember reading about). If so, how do we know the odds of habitability of planets in the zone? Couldn't it be that, yes, they do need to be in that zone to support life, but only 1% of planets in that zone have other factors that contribute to that support? (Like a magnetosphere)

Comment: Attacks are cheap (Score 2, Insightful) 125

by ballwall (#32298280) Attached to: Michal Zalewski On Security's Broken Promises

I think the issue is not that we're bad at security, it's just that attacks are cheap, so you need the virtual equivalent of fort knox security on every webserver. That sort of thing isn't feasible.

The lock on my house isn't 100% secure, but a random script kiddie isn't pounding on it 24/7, so it's good enough.

Comment: Re:For the truly anti-punctuation (Score 1) 660

by geminidomino (#31924182) Attached to: Website Mass-Bans Users Who Mention AdBlock

Nonsense, there is still punctuation -- and capital letters! -- in that. What you want is for no spaces, no lower-case, truly zero punctuation.

I think that may have whooshed on you, which is understandable if you've never seen the Zero Punctuation videos. The voiceovers of the videos are delivered by an ornery English-born Australian EXTREMELY rapidly, and often end with an emphatic non-sequitur.

Comment: Re:I painfully threw away three P.C.s just this we (Score 1) 268

by NJRoadfan (#31924180) Attached to: True Tales of Tech Hoarding

Took out the hard drives... maybe... maybe... I'll mount them and extract them.

Took out the memory (???? who is going to use the old memory- why did I do that?)

A good Ask Slashdot... how does one quickly and securely wipe a pile of hard drives? As for the old memory, one can make money on it if their timing is right. Good old Rambus RAM sold for a pretty penny when the 5 people still using those machines wanted more RAM.

You are false data.