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Comment: Re:Meh (Score 5, Informative) 372

by craighansen (#49634605) Attached to: Global Carbon Dioxide Levels Reach New Monthly Record

This was predictable based upon the Keeling curve, which has a seasonal oscillation based upon northern hemisphere plant growth. About two years ago, the peaks of the CO2 concentration measured at Mauna Kea exceeded 400 ppm. Now the average is 400ppm, and in about two years, the trough of the CO2 concentration will exceed 400ppm.

The way things are going that'll be the last point we see 400ppm until the next extinction event.

Comment: Re:A story for those who (Score 1) 128

by craighansen (#49608819) Attached to: 4.0 Earthquake Near Concord, California

It was barely noticeable - that's why I went to the USGS site to see what it was. Didn't know we had to edumacate Slashdot on the Richter/Mercalli scale, particularly the editors who choose what random notes to put on the front page. Still, a magnitude 4.0 is a release of more energy than a MOAB , so I felt it even though 100km away. Those living in Concord would've felt a little more.

Comment: Re:A story for those who (Score 2) 128

by craighansen (#49608765) Attached to: 4.0 Earthquake Near Concord, California

An expression of caution following a quake "predicts" many more quakes than will really occur, as the probability is still less than 50%. Knowing of increased probability merely opens considerations of what to do during a "cautionary" period - minor adjustments such as lowering speed on the Transbay tunnel, or postponing crane lifts or tower climbs might be the kinds of things to do, but people may well tire of making these adjustments when nothing happens repeatedly. Bringing all life to a screaming halt or evacuating the cities isn't an appropriate response, but expressing relief at small shocks is what got those Italian scientists/bureaucrats convicted (all but one overturned on appeal).

I earned some ridicule today because a 4.0 quake wasn't followed by a larger quake - was even adjusted to a 3.6 magnitude. I was surprised when it posted to the front page - I thought it was just a note that might get combined into some other posting - slow news day, I guess. A few thousand people posted to the "I felt it" links on the USGS and similar sites, and enough people pressed "+" on the firehose to outweigh my own personal "-".

Comment: Re:A story for those who (Score 1) 128

by craighansen (#49608059) Attached to: 4.0 Earthquake Near Concord, California

I didn't put it on the front page. I did follow up with a comment that this was a group of 4 quakes, the first of which, magnitude 2.5 was about 10 minutes before the largest at magnitude 4.0. Slashdot's editors must have chosen to ignore the followup. There was another smaller one about an hour later. Yes, 4.0 is a small quake and I wasn't upset about it. Perhaps it would be interesting to note that quakes do follow each other in statistical groupings, so a small quake can indicate another following quake with increased probability - a ten minute warning is arguably more meaningful than the tens of seconds we can get by outrunning the p- and s- waves with electromagnetic waves.

Comment: Re:the real traitors (Score 1) 200

by craighansen (#49423837) Attached to: Snowden Demystified: Can the Government See My Junk?

++this. The "Three hops" rule, using a connection factor of 190 (the average number of friends on facebook), you're not a target of surveillance if none of the 5 million people that are friends of friends of friends of you are foreign nationals.

(You'll have to drag the slider to 190 to get the 5 million figure.)

Comment: Re:Overrated (Score 2) 200

by craighansen (#49423755) Attached to: Snowden Demystified: Can the Government See My Junk?

The quality hasn't declined - it's just that the media's effort in 24-hour news channels is being deployed to make money rather than inform the public. They're very good at what they do: engage eyeballs and prepare them to absorb commercial messages. CNN and FoxNews (and other news channels) are knowingly crafting over-the-top material and - far from being concerned that they'll be called out by comedians - they're thrilled every time one of their segments makes it to the Daily Show. Beyond that, they return the favor and run segments showing how they're getting the attention of John Stewart. There can never be a negative news story when it's all about capturing your attention.

Regarding Oliver, I think he did a good job of pointing out that the abstract idea of government surveillance hasn't captured the public's attention, and helped the public understand that it's simply and clearly wrong for the government to be Hoovering up all your bits, especially your naughty bits. Citizenfour showed how Snowden was equal parts earnest and naive to think that people wanted to know the extent of these government programs. As he was explaining these programs to Greenwald, he was just becoming aware of how difficult it was going to be to effective in disclosing the leaked information he was leaking. Snowden himself was shocked to discover, after reporters found the figure in his material, that over a million citizens are specific targets of the US programs.There was really only a tiny window for the leaked information to be news before Snowden and where he'd be able to live became the news story that replaced it.

Comment: Single Byte Key (Score 1) 277

So the single byte key is derived in some undiscovered manner from the password. Given how weak the encryption is known to be already, I wonder if one out of 256 encryption keys turn out to be a zero byte. In such a case, the encryption would leave the file unchanged. (Could be patched with "key=key?key:1;")

Logic is a pretty flower that smells bad.