Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Re:Anyone else not surprised? (Score 4, Interesting) 612

by bananaendian (#38307904) Attached to: Iranian TV Shows Downed US Drone

You are describing signal jamming tech (single-channel, sine-wave) that is decades old.

Modern EW platforms are capable of covering entire RF bands, adapting and following hopping schemes, and efficiently spreading their energy over seemingly pseudo-random code-schemes.

In the end, there's only so much you can do with modulation techniques - it comes down to signal strength - and the inverse-square-law pretty much says that who-ever gets closer wins.

The control signal from the US base comes likely via LEO sat-link or over-the-horizon AWACS-type platform - both of which are going to be hundreds of kilometers away. You're not going to need "absurdly more powerful" anything to interfere with that. I have a wide-band I/Q generator able to modulate any mathematically describable code-sheme - which I could then hook up to our MIL-STD-461 susceptibility testing-chamber-amp - and knowing something about the signal band I could easily get the right high-gain antenna to track the bastard off the sky... and all this is with off-the-shelf COTS equipment!

Comment: What we know. And never will know. (Score 1) 612

by bananaendian (#38307384) Attached to: Iranian TV Shows Downed US Drone

We will probably never know how the plane came down - unless some new Manning leaks the info to us: US gov won't admit anything - and all Iranian 'proof' is subject to doubt...

Assuming the worst: the control channel was hacked and the drone was guided down - would involve immense sophistication even with assuming they've cracked all security features in the system - you'd still need to reverse-engineer the protocols, plan and test the attack mode, and execute it in the right signal-environment - not to mention build a working replica of the guidance platform and human interface control and train someone to pilot the thing down.

Something like this would need superior surveillance over a long period - outside help would probably help a lot: Russian signal intelligence satellites, combined with Chinese cyber experts most likely - already the intel community is speculating that the Russian and the Chinese are the real end-customer here for this 'delivery'.

Someone here mentioned a previous intercept of a video feed from a US drone over Irak: that was intercepted between a relay and unencrypted satellite link - not the drone and ground-station. Any modern military tech can't possibly use an unencrypted control channel in the battle field these days!?!

Someone else mentioned that the control signal comes from above: satellite or AWACS aircraft - and shouldn't be able to be intercepted from a ground station. Well, that's all relative if its simply a matter of signal strength. And who sais the intercept came from down below - both R and C have satellites above...

The only fact we know about the drone guidance system is what the US military told us: in the event of lost communication the drone should return automatically back to base.

Now we can speculate how that guidance logic would work: if it is like the one on current smaller Israeli drones for example - it is simply a GPS-autopilot back to home co-ordinates - which is subject to false/spoofed GPS signal that the Iranians could've subjected the drone to - GPS signal is notoriously weak, even with upward pointing antennas it might be overridden from ground - and then you'd only have to drown out the control signal to make the drone go into autopilot mode, and land the thing in the false co-ordinates provided by the ground signal. The Iranians surely know where the home base was so it would be simple matter of shifting the reference coordinates to their own airfield or landing area in the desert...

Comment: Re:An engineer's reaction CORRECTED (Score 4, Interesting) 505

by bananaendian (#36392304) Attached to: Personal Electronics May Indeed Disrupt Avionics

Here we go again, every couple of years an article relating to avionics interference shows up in slashdot and I have to come out of my cave to save the world...

Here is something I wrote back in 2006 about this same issue.

Just because you are 'an engineer' who 'works with RF' doesn't mean you know tiddly about avionics. I actually work at an avionics lab and repair and test these devices and have actually measured RF interference of avionics systems, both on the ground and in the air. Its my job.

As a fellow engineer I could give you a 5 minute brief on how the ILS system works, another 15 to go through explaining all the board level receiver circuits, data busses and another 20 to go throught the navigation computer and autopilot at block diagram level - and afterwards you'd be rolling on the floor laughing to the very idea of a passenger ipod being able to interfere with 'the ILS system'... unfortunately my superiors are hunting me down to lock me back to my cave now.

For others see what I wrote about Ultracrepidarianism

Comment: Re:A note from the author... (Score 1) 40

by bananaendian (#35991642) Attached to: Using Googlemaps To Simulate Tsunamis

Perhaps you could've slightly improved your piece of 'code' before slashing it here, but then anything get plastered around here these days...

Google maps DEM (Digital Elevation Model) is based on SRTM (Shuttle Radar Topography Mission) data over most of the globe. You can download the original processed data from NASA and apply it to any GIS software of your choice.

Then with a single click of the elevation tool you can raise or lower the global sea level by x meters of your choice. Was playing around with this 7 years ago when the data came out. Now bored of it.

Like some have pointed out already, the flood fill algorithm is a bit pointless since tsunamis don't behave like flood filled algorithms. A more informative map would simply color areas more than a certain height green showing areas that are definitely out of reach of a tsunami of certain height. Then people could at least see where its relatively safe by inputting the maximum wave height. With large tsunamis we do not even have scientific data on how far inland they could actually travel. Some geologists for example speculate that a super tsunami might have swept across the whole of the Australian continent.

Comment: Re:Still available for CDs and DVDs. (Score 1) 340

by bananaendian (#35158656) Attached to: Microsoft Kills AutoRun In Windows

How about also linking to the original source.

Who reads slashdot TFA:s anyway these days? All they do is linkfuck you into some blogfarm multipage sprawl with regurgitated 'content' from the actual source. Most of the time you have to google the original source: corporate press-release, university research group submission etc. because they can't be bothered to put in an actual hyper-link to their hyper-fucking-document!

Sincerely TimBL

Comment: Re:How does autorun get you a virus? (Score 1) 340

by bananaendian (#35158612) Attached to: Microsoft Kills AutoRun In Windows

it does not impact "shiny media" such as CDs or DVDs that contain Autorun files. We are aware that someone could write malware to take advantage of that, but we haven't seen it in the wild. (We also think malware on shiny media would be less likely to have widespread impact, because people burn CDs less often than they insert USB drives.)

They are just messing with windows registry settings for autorun. Any admin concerned with security has already done this manually since conflicker.

The only sure way to kill this vector for infection is :

REGEDIT4
[HKEY_LOCALMACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\IniFileMapping\Autorun.inf]
@="@SYS:DoesNotExist"

Comment: Re:Another unfunded mandate (Score 1) 247

by bananaendian (#35011078) Attached to: DOJ Seeks Mandatory Data Retention For ISPs

So how much would it cost to run even a low level log of all traffic (http requests? email headers? attachement file names?). I wouldn't even know how to begin to estimate.

However I do know what storage costs and despite all the hoopla about cheap consumer USB-harddrives, real storage is still expensive.

Recently I looked around for the cheapest possible reliable enterprise storage for a medium size company and their daughter companies.

A Proliant DL380 with an expansion bay and second raid controller for 8 more disks could conceivably cheaply hold 16x500G disks, 4x4 RAID5 = 6TB of usable space, with a cost of ...

Comment: Engineering (Score 4, Insightful) 757

by bananaendian (#34973362) Attached to: America Losing Its Edge In Innovation

So anybody at all can be an engineer if they just decide so?

Yes! exactly. Engineering is about a state of mind. You can sit in a school all you like but you'll never become an engineer.

An engineer is someone who makes things, makes things better, as is passionate about it. The questions is: when did I become an engineer?

When I took apart my first machine and put it back together?

When I designed my first circuit, programmed my first code?

When I sold my first design, setup and registered my own business?

You can cry into your pillow all you like about formal qualifications - the most successful and inspiring engineers I know never benefited from or cared much for the education they went through - they were already engineers.

Comment: As an Engineer... (Score 4, Insightful) 757

by bananaendian (#34972960) Attached to: America Losing Its Edge In Innovation

As an engineer I work on things everyday that have direct and immediate consequences in the physical world. Hence my errors of judgment or bias have a direct feedback to me. The physical world is a hard unforgiving taskmaster.

A politician is buffered from any consequences or feedbacks to his actions by distance; the bureaucracy surrounding him as well as the physical disconnect.

As an engineer I must compromise between contradictory and opposite qualities and find practical combinations that satisfy a multitude of specifications and demands. I must accommodate as well as critically evaluate the demands of users, marketing and design and architecture people, and come up with a mutual understanding of what they actually want within the means of what is possible.

A politician is defined only by what that supports him in power - those who fund and elect him for the next term.

The limits with my work are the laws of physics - both direct resources: money, time, people - as well as all kinds of non-intuitive ones: scaling, flow rate, logistic function, probability distribution. Hence my sense for the 'truth' is not based on passion but experimentation, and I appear unsure and as having no confidence in my 'opinions' - which I don't really have at all, as most people understand them. An opinion for me is always something I can explain - at least to myself - and most of the time to others. It is this process that both helps me understand my own reasoning better (keeps me honest to myself), as well as provides a further insight into my cognition as well as to some extent of those of others.

A politician swims in the superficial memes of popular sentiment. He maybe an ideologue but a successful one is also a pragmatist: he shapes truth into what is most convenient for the occasion and in doing so may actually benefit from self-delusion, even intentional and conscious.

It maybe be argued that in this way a politician is more 'human' than an engineer and thus is more suited to lead us. And that my friends is the conclusion that cost me my mod points.

Burn baby burn!

Comment: Re:Gone are the days of sanity... (Score 1) 757

by bananaendian (#34972560) Attached to: America Losing Its Edge In Innovation

The popular belief these days is that everyone is allowed to a have 'democratic' opinion on any subject regardless if they have any clue as to what they are talking about.

No more do we look up, listen to and expect people with expertise to give us the benefit of their experience. Rather we shun 'experts' with their 'facts', since surely that sort of commitment to their field has made them biased and unreliable sources. Only the truly uneducated and ignorant are 'pure' in their innocence, only the most intuitive, simplistic and superficial description of the world maybe be considered honest. Anyone with an explanation longer than a sound bite, let alone a formula, is a charlatan, using his book-knowledge to fool us!

Trust your gut feelings, your most primitive prejudice, that which you share with those who are the loudest. Because they are the ones in charge now, they are the ones who get what they want in this world. Who gives a toss about the laws of physics, logic or math, when the truth is determined by everyone - with mod points.

Is that you Colbert?

Comment: Gone are the days of sanity... (Score 5, Insightful) 757

by bananaendian (#34972496) Attached to: America Losing Its Edge In Innovation

The popular belief these days is that everyone is allowed to a have 'democratic' opinion on any subject regardless if they have any clue as to what they are talking about.

No more do we look up, listen to and expect people with expertise to give us the benefit of their experience. Rather we shun 'experts' with their 'facts', since surely that sort of commitment to their field has made them biased and unreliable sources. Only the truly uneducated and ignorant are 'pure' in their innocence, only the most intuitive, simplistic and superficial description of the world maybe be considered honest. Anyone with an explanation longer than a sound bite, let alone a formula, is a charlatan, using his book-knowledge to fool us!

Trust your gut feelings, your most primitive prejudice, that which you share with those who are the loudest. Because they are the ones in charge now, they are the ones who get what they want in this world. Who gives a toss about the laws of physics, logic or math, when the truth is determined by everyone - with mod points.

Comment: Because! (Score 1) 290

by bananaendian (#34932070) Attached to: Yahoo IPv6 Upgrade Could Shut Out 1M Users

Windows Server 2008 R2. Not that IPv6 implementation itself is wrong - its just everything else surrounding it: from dcpromo to the evil Network and Sharing Center and bloody stupid restricted control of firewall profiles.

Most MS technet comments just end up recommending disabling ipv6 as 'the solution'.

Result: hell'va load of windows servers on the web with just ipv4 soon...

"Lead us in a few words of silent prayer." -- Bill Peterson, former Houston Oiler football coach

Working...