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Comment: Re:Memorizing site-unique passwords isn't possible (Score 1) 199

by Kjella (#49349625) Attached to: Generate Memorizable Passphrases That Even the NSA Can't Guess

The real solution is to use password management software like KeePass, LastPass, or 1Password. Lock your password program with your good password from Diceware, and use unique, truly random passwords for all the websites you've registered on.

At the cost of travelling around with the keys to the kingdom. Imagine you're on vacation and you want to pop into an internet cafe and log into /. because abstinence. Except it has a keylogger/trojan that'll steal your key file and your master password. Now you've compromised your email, online bank, ebay, paypal, steam and all the other passwords that might really matter. Personally I tend to keep three:

1) My mail, because it gets all the password resets.
2) My bank, but it's using two-factor anyway.
3) My "assorted junk" password where I might lose my forum account or whatever that doesn't *really* matter.

I really try not to use the first two on an untrusted device unless I really have to, because afterwards I need to change it. In fact if I know I will need to use it I'll change it on a trusted device up front and restore it later, good memorized passwords are a pain to relearn.

Comment: Re:Still waiting for a "hackability meter" (Score 1) 144

by Kjella (#49346733) Attached to: Many Password Strength Meters Are Downright Weak, Researchers Say

What we need is a meter on a web site describing how much effort they put into server security, how big their target profile is (how many entry points they have) and a sign that says "??? days since a total data breach!", and then the user can decide if they want an account there at all. How's that coming?

Are you secretly planning to use it as a Dunning-Kruger meter and avoid all that self-rate as 10 out of 10? Because if you think you'll get anything else useful out of it, I want some of what you're smoking...

Comment: Re:Absolutely crucial (Score 1) 129

A good start would be what is proposed in the press release: Harmonized VAT rates and rules for digital goods.

The problem is that unifying VAT and classifications basically regulating half a tax system without regulating the other half. You can tax income and you can tax consumption and there's pros and cons to both. If we're forced to lower our VAT, the other taxes would probably increase to compensate or the other way around. In addition many of the VAT brackets are made for a specific purpose because the goods are either particularly good or bad for society, like taxing books less (knowledge is good) and tobacco more (very bad for public health).

For example, around here we have about half VAT on food. If we can't keep that exception, prices would rise 10%+ on the spot. So would our taxes, in practice we'd probably funnel that money into agricultural subsidies instead which would make our food cheaper, thus creating an even more heavily protected, subsidized agriculture. And the things we want to punish, just add other taxes instead of VAT, unless the EU wants to regulate all consumption tax. That would be a tough sell, I think.

What products and services end up in what VAT bracket is sometimes controversial, for example here in Norway at the moment there's 0% VAT on buying a physical newspaper and 25% VAT on a digital newspaper, because it doesn't meet the criteria for an exemption. Also eating at a restaurant and takeaway ended up in different brackets, so if you take your burger outside and eat it on the sidewalk it's cheaper than sitting down at McDonald's. We have an exception for culture, they were probably thinking more like theater, opera, concerts but exotic dancers won at court as an "artistic performance".

Not saying it can't happen, but if it does it's a big step on the way towards a "United States of Europe".

Comment: Re:homeowner fail (Score 3, Informative) 490

My realtor didn't like it because it was an "unusual" offer, but I said it was a contract and I could put any conditions in it I wanted - the seller just had to agree (and did).

Fwiw with real estate this is tricky; not every contract rider is allowed in every jurisdiction, and some may be allowed but cause complexities. Not saying this particular one wasn't allowed in yours, but you can't generally assume that you can write anything you want into a real-estate transaction and not end up with problems.

Comment: Re: Invisible hand (Score 1) 490

If the prices were set near cost, that might be a reasonable excuse, but Comcast prices have ballooned much faster than inflation. They also charge much more than is typical for broadband in other countries where the cables are municipally owned and rented out to ISPs. Yet they still can't make a profit even with their absurd $60+/mo packages?

Comment: Re:Leave then (Score 1) 841

by Kjella (#49339635) Attached to: Gen Con Threatens To Leave Indianapolis Over Religious Freedom Bill

No one is forcing you to associate with anyone. But as a BUSINESS, you will provide the same service to everyone regardless of race/creed/religion/etc.

Funny, that never seems ot work when the elementary school teacher also dances at the local strip club. Then it's never about non-discrimination based on job performance and all about your employer's right to not associate with you anymore. Let's face it, you've picked some attributes that have hardly anything to do with your job performance like race, religion, sex etc. and "blessed" them while other equally irrelevant attributes can get you fired on the spot.

And a white baker should not have to serve a black customer, right? (...) You may not like being "forced" to serve black people.

I'm not sure why you need to put "forced" in quotes. If you're a white supremacist running a self-owned bakery and wouldn't serve a black customer voluntarily, then clearly it's involuntary aka forced. As forced as the health and safety regulations and paying your employees minimum wage I guess, but it's something the government tells you that you must do. Now I know certain libertarians try to make great leaps of logic to act like they're different, but fundamentally they're not. If you want to throw out all government regulation, you also throw out what keeps the baker from refusing to serve the black guy.

Comment: Re:python and java (Score 1) 473

by Just Some Guy (#49338871) Attached to: No, It's Not Always Quicker To Do Things In Memory

Python's string library isn't remotely what I'd call "overweight", but its strings are immutable. Some algorithms that are quick in other languages are slow in Python, and some operations that are risky in other languages (like using strings for hash keys) are trivial (and threadsafe) in Python. But regardless of the language involved, it's always a good idea to have a bare minimum of knowledge about it before you do something completely stupid.

Comment: Re:Nukes will always be in our back-pocket (Score 1) 225

by Kjella (#49337893) Attached to: How Nuclear Weapon Modernization Undercuts Disarmament

Your argument sounds roughly like the one I heard was common after WWI, after millions dying in static trench wars they thought barbed wire and machine guns would basically end war since any attacker would be sending their troops into a massive suicidal bullet rain. At the time it was probably true, remember the car was in its very infancy. Except over the next 20 years the Germans created Panzers and Blitzkrieg tactics outmaneuvering and overrunning France in six weeks.

So maybe in the 1950s or 1980s you could send ICBMs and have them reach their destination, but they're always working on laser weapons, missile-destroying missiles like the Patriot missile and a host of other highly classified projects. In case you missed the memo NATO has been working on a ballistic missile shield, allegedly against rogue nations like Iran and North Korea but Russia is also not amused. There might come a time where the "mutually" part of "assured destruction" is no longer valid, it's not like we invented nukes and war is now over, forever. Then you're being extremely naive.

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