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Comment Re:Still missing the point (Score 1) 206

Right. However, if you're not a US Person (i.e. if you don't have US Citizenship or a Permanent Resident Permit), there's no due process for you as well: NSA can access your GMail account without a warrant, because, well, you'd be a foreigner in their eyes, and foreigners are NOT protected by US laws in this area. No FISA court for you, comrade! That's the point: in Russia, they may pretend to follow due process (even if they don't), in the US, they don't even pretend to follow due process if you're no US Person. That's why some States are considering encouraging their citizens to move their personal data out of the US cloud.

Comment Host your data with your domestic spying agency! (Score 1) 206

Seen from the outside world, most, if not all, US clouds are accessible to the NSA and other US state agencies. Especially if you're not a US Person, those agencies can request your data without a warrant at all. So what the Russians and Brazilians and soon to follow other nations are doing is this: they don't want you to post your potentially incriminating personal data on NSA-controlled servers when the NSA could use them to blackmail you should you work in an important position in politics, industry etc... They rather want you to post data on servers THEY, on only they, control. What's so wrong about this? If you are about to freely give your personal data to a spying agency anyway, it could as well be your own domestic spying agency, instead of the NSA. At least, that agency would be bound by your local laws w.r.t. the respect of privacy and protection of data of its own citizens, while the NSA is free to do what it wants with data of non US Persons, including selling them on the black market (not that they would do such a thing, of course, but in theory, they could). All this is due to the NSA overstepping its original mission that was code breaking and code development, and embarking on the Orwell program of TIA.

Comment Relocate GitHub outside of the US (Score 1) 349

Would it be really so hard to relocate GitHub (servers, company and all) outside the US to avoid those DMCA take downs? Especially considering that it would also make life for the NSA a little harder too (no NSLs could force GitHub to secretly include backdoors here and there, and keep silent about it). Next question: what country would be most friendly to Open Source yet resisting the insatiable hunger of the copyright trolls?

Comment Re: Wait a minute! (Score 1) 74

Is it really wrong to spy on the worldwide communication infrastructure, as long as you can? This ubiquitous spying can only spur the deployment of more encryption, anonymizing protocols and generally hardening the infrastructure. As long as that infrastructure is so easily vulnerable to snooping, why should the NSA, GCHQ and other spying agencies refrain from exploiting it? After all, it's our fault that we keep communicating in the clear, and that we keep trusting commercial companies that provide closed source products that we can't inspect (at least in theory).

Comment Re:Too many secrets (Score 1) 74

Suppose the inquiry board wants needs the testimony of anonymous whistle blowers (NOT Snowden, he's known). How do you suppose the anonymity of those testifying can be granted, if the inquiry is being public? I guess the NSA through the BND wanted to know who was testifying there, and what they exactly said.

Comment Backdoors will be added at build time (Score 1) 178

Unless governments can rebuild the released version of Microsoft products with said source code, they'll be fed a sanitized version of that source code, but not the original full code base needed to build the final binaries. Backdoors could still be added later at build time, so what's the point?

Comment Use paper, CC the NSA later (Score 1) 143

Seriously... paper is the superior alternative here. It doesn't interrupt your and your coworkers' train of thought, it has backup, it is the fastest way to collaboratively design and modify designs... and it has the added advantage of being unspyable by the NSA, GCHQ, the Chinese, or other industrial espionage outfits who rely on ElInt. Prepare your designs on paper. There'll be enough time to translate your final design on a computer and CC the NSA and competition later.

Ask Slashdot: Choosing a Web Language That's Long-Lived, and Not Too Buzzy? 536

adelayde (185757) writes "In my day job, I work on a web based service with a lot of legacy code written in that older (and some may say venerable) web-scripting language, Perl. Although we use Modern Perl extensions such as Moose, the language just seems to be ossifying and we're wanting to move to a more up-to-date and used language for web applications, or even an entire framework, to do new development. We're still planning to support the legacy code for a number of years to come; that's unavoidable. This is a fairly big project and it's mission critical to the business. The thing we're afraid of is jumping onto something that is too new and too buzzy as we'd like to make a technology decision that would be good at least for the next five years, if not more, and today's rising star could quite easily be in tomorrow's dustbin. What language and/or framework would you recommend we adopt?"

Comment Re:But I thought it was already dead? (Score 2) 71

Why not? The only thing that Google really does better than anyone else is search (and maybe free machine translation). For everything else, there's a better or at least equivalent option.

Gmail is actually doing quite a good job as well. What other mail provider does probably BCC every mail you receive and send to the NSA cloud for safekeeping and backup?

Comment Don't depend on a social network (Score 1) 71

Google suspending Orkut is but a tiny example of why you better communicate with people by using e-mail directly. Or, if you must, go the old fashioned way (*cough* Usenet *cough*). But rely on a specific social network run by a single company, and you're sure that it will be shut down sometimes down the road. Even Facebook, not to mention Google+ will someday go the way of Geocities.

MP Says 'Failed' Piracy Warnings Should Escalate To Fines & Jail 135

An anonymous reader writes with news that, not long after UK ISPs agreed to send piracy notices (Voluntary Copyright Alerts Program), thoughts have already turned toward adding criminal penalties. From the article: Prime Minister David Cameron's IP advisor believes that the carrot needs to be backed up by a stick. In a report published yesterday largely detailing the "Follow the Money" approach to dealing with pirate sites, Mike Weatherley MP says now is the time to think about VCAP’s potential failure. "The Voluntary Copyright Alert Programme (VCAP) is welcomed and will be a good step forward once it is hopefully in operation in 2015, although it is primarily an education tool," Weatherley says. ... "Warnings and fines are obvious first steps, with Internet access blocking and custodial sentencing for persistent and damaging infringers not to be ruled out in my opinion." These suggestions aren't new, but this is the second time in a matter of months that the Prime Minister's closest advisor on IP matters has spoken publicly about the possibility of putting persistent file-sharers in jail.

Comment Re:I hope they get whatever they can for them (Score 1) 232

Selling bitcoin - or ANYTHING ELSE - at an auction in exchange for US dollars does not set ANY kind of precedent establishing that bitcoin - or ANYTHING ELSE - is now legal tender. In fact, it establishes the opposite.

You're right. It would make bitcoin legal tender only if you could pay for the auctioned bitcoins with... bitcoins. But then again, that would be pretty pointless, wouldn't it?

"Well, it don't make the sun shine, but at least it don't deepen the shit." -- Straiter Empy, in _Riddley_Walker_ by Russell Hoban