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Comment: Re:Charges? (Score 1) 225 225

I can't either, but based on the list of initial charges: Conspiracy to Traffic in Narcotics, Conspiracy to Traffic in Forged Documents, Conspiracy to Hack (or whatever the legal term for hackery is), Money Laundering, Engaging in a Continuing Criminal Enterprise aka "Kingpin" charges, Conspiracy to Commit Identity Theft, and Conspiracy to Traffic in Stolen Information. The "hacking, identity theft, stolen information" was viewed as too reduntant so two of them were dropped. I can't find which one remained, though.

Comment: Re:Simple question (Score 3, Informative) 110 110

In case you haven't looked at the pictures: Take a look. So, is it true that the internals are lopsided so that that one engine actually is thrusting colinear with the center of mass, like you seem to assume? Nope! If the internals were lopsided then the wings would need to be asymmetric or it would suffer some pretty serious torque when gliding. The reason the engine is offset is that the origional design called for two engines. This was overkill for the amount of thrust required, so they cut one out. It would have taken some redesign to have the single engine back in the center, and since it gimbles far enough that it can still produce a thrust vector colinear with the center of mass, there was no reason to do so.

So to answer the actual question "It works by turning the engine a little bit to compensate".

Comment: Re:How do you pee? (Score 1) 288 288

It's not a kill switch that destroys your computer. It's a kill switch that shuts it down after flushing the disk cache (under the assumption that, as a career criminal with a vested interest in keeping your evidence locked down, you have an encrypted file system). So if you go use the bathroom, your PC turns off. If you have a SSD it will take you literally several seconds to boot again and remount your encrypted file system. Slightly inconvenient, but much better than if the police are able to rip your laptop away and attach a robotic device / intern that fucks with the mouse to keep the screensaver from unmounting the encrypted file system before they've had the time to duplicate the contents.

Comment: Re:Mo-tiv-a-tion (Score 1) 583 583

Well, that's simple. The First AI will have a single purpose: To define a better better. Once it defines a better better, it will iterate and define a "better better" better, and then a ""better better" better" better. Repeat until your definition of better converges upon the best better. Now you can define "best" as "the thing that maximizes better". Now you just need to write a programming AI and tell it to program a better programming AI until it achieves the best programming AI. The last step is to ask the best programming AI to write the best general purpose AI. It may prove necessary to interleave these steps, so that the programming AI uses an intermediate definition of better to create a somewhat better programming AI and also a better better betterer AI. Otherwise the better betterer may come up with a definition of better that is so much better that the better betterer itself needs to be better before it can use it!

Comment: Re:"Protected Corporate Speak"? (Score 1) 95 95

"Protected Corporate Speech" according to Ars Technica's editorialization. The decision itself doesn't use such a term, because it would be totally meaningless. And at any rate, most of the things said were not said by EA, but by a number of officers and executives of EA, and they were sued personally. So the majority of the claims were not about corporate speech at all. They also were not ruled "protected", they were ruled "inactionable" (under the SEC regulations against misleading investors).

Comment: Re:I really don't my vital body parts to be on wif (Score 1) 183 183

The heart in TFA is self-regulating. It has sensors that monitor assorted vital stats and automatically adjust the heart rate as needed. According to TFA it's sophisticated enough that if your loved one enters the room the artificial heart will speed up, just like a real heart would do. The Transhumanist journalist seems to think that's a good start, but it would be even better if you could use a cellphone to override the automatic pulse so you could prevent yourself from getting over-excited, or force it into overdrive because you know you're about to go for a run / have sex. I don't know. I think my real heart does just fine in those situations. For "calming you down" I don't think induced bradycardia should go on the list. If that belongs on any list, it would be the top 10 ways to make you think you're dying.

Comment: Re:E-mail? (Score 1) 346 346

Why? They employees doing the test were already cleared to work with the client data, or it would "violate all security policies" to have them doing the work using the old flowcharts. If you gave them fake data you would firstly also need a control group so you can be sure the fake data is just as challenging as real data (with real data you can just compare performance to the established average). And second, you're wasting time on your test! Even if the workflow ends up being less efficient so you get less work done per month, you still got some work done! If it was fake data, you would not be getting any work done while testing the new workflow.

Comment: Re:You get what you pay for... (Score 1) 346 346

This was an email about a test, not a test about an email. The email was a summary report on testing they had been doing on their "internal processes". AKA they had a new checklist or flowchart or whatever, and they were making sure that this new process meets the federal reporting requirements, while also not sucking (or whatever other requirements they have for an "internal process").

Comment: Re:why? (Score 1) 346 346

I could get prison time for opening mail that is addressed to only my wife.

No you couldn't. Well, I'm assuming you live with your wife and didn't steal the letter from her mailbox. The relevant law is 18 USC S 1702 "Obstruction of correspondence"

Whoever takes any letter, postal card, or package out of any post office or any authorized depository for mail matter, or from any letter or mail carrier, or which has been in any post office or authorized depository, or in the custody of any letter or mail carrier, before it has been delivered to the person to whom it was directed, with design to obstruct the correspondence, or to pry into the business or secrets of another, or opens, secretes, embezzles, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.

Notice that it includes taking, opening, and destroying, all equally. If it was a felony to open your wife's mail, it would be an equal felony to remove it from the mailbox and bring it inside. It's not a felony. Mostly because this only applies while the mail is in the possession of the post office. Contrary to a related urban legend, your mailbox is not considered property of the post office. Once the letter is placed there, it is considered delievered. Taking mail from somebody else's mailbox is considered "theft" which is not a federal crime. Some states make mail theft worse than regular theft, but it's stealing regardless.

Because the law is "delievered to the person to whom it was directed" it is may still be considered "obstruction of correspondence" if you open or destroy somebody else's mail, if it was delievered to you accidentially. However, the key is still that your intent was to prevent them from getting the mail, or to pry into their secrets. If you get a letter, open it, and realize "hey, who is this from?" you are not a felon. You still need to get it back to the post office so they can deliver it properly (if they put it in the wrong box) or return it to the sender (if the person has moved without a forwarding address), otherwise you are obstructing the deliever (this is the "secreting" part of the law). But again, the law requires intent. It's not a crime if you just forget to do it.

Comment: Re:The relevant part (Score 1) 560 560

It's not irrelevant. It's extremely important because of the Act of Production Doctrine.

Under the Act of Production Doctrine, the act of an individual in producing documents or materials (e.g., in response to a subpoena) may have a "testimonial aspect" for purposes of the individual's right to assert the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination to the extent that the individual's act of production provides information not already in the hands of law enforcement personnel about the (1) existence; (2) custody; or (3) authenticity, of the documents or materials produced.

For example, let's ignore computers: You are wanted for wire fraud. The police search your home with a warrant for accounting documents. They find a small fire safe in the back of your attic. They ask for your combo and like a smart criminal you say "lawyer" and nothing else. So they will see if their safe crackers can open it without risking damage to the contents. Lets say it's a sort of safe where you need to blow it open, and this may destroy the documents it might contain. So they need that combo. They go to a judge and want a subpoena for the combonation. Or rather, they subpoena the contents of the safe. You don't have to tell them the combo, but you do have to open the safe for them if you want to keep the combo secret. At least, that's what they get if the judge sides with them. So the question is, where does this fall WRT the Act of Production Doctrine. The safe was in the corner of your attic. It could have been there when you moved in. It could be your roommates. You could be aware of its existence, or not. You could have put its contents inside of it, or not. At this point, the police do not know any of these answers. So by the Act of Production Doctrine, opening the safe would be testifying as to all of these things. Therefore, the Fifth would protect you from this demand. However, if they dust it for prints and find that your prints are all over the tumbler, then you're on shakier ground. The judge may rule that this shows that your control of the safe is now a "forgone conclusion" and issue the subpoena. Of course, you could say "Well yeah, it was here when I moved in, I tried a few obvious combos, they didn't work, I gave up". That will be up to the judge to decide. Contrary to /. belief, judges are not robots, and are allowed to make this kind of judgement. If you say "I bought that years ago, I don't even remember the combonation anymore" then it is up to the judge, again, to decide if you're lying. If he thinks you're lying, he can lock you up for contempt to "jog your memory". IIRC there is no limit to how long this can go on. It's a shitty thing to happen if you legitimately don't remember your safe combo. But it's nothing anywhere CLOSE to new.

On the other hand, if instead of saying "lawyer" you said "hahaha, stupid coppers, only I know the combonation, and if you try to crack the safe you will destroy all of the evidence of my many crimes! The Firth will protect me and I'll walk!" then a judge will almost certainly accept your volunteered testimony on the matter and rule that it is a "foregone conclusion" that you know the safe combo (and that you know it contains the documents the police are looking for). So, don't say that.

In this case, the defendant did the second thing, though without all of the "I did it" bits. He admitted the laptop was his, he admitted it contained encrypted emails discussing the allegedly fradulent things the company was doing, and he admitted that he still knows the password. So the legal question was not "can we compel somebody to reveal a key" because that's already legally decided. The question is "is a password a key? or is it just a word?" The judge ruled that a password was a key, and since the defendant was no longer protected by the Act of Production Doctrine due to his own previous testimony, he can be compelled to use that key. This will only apply to you if the Act of Production Doctrine does not protect you.

I'm still waiting for the advent of the computer science groupie.