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Comment: Re:Metro UI (Score 1) 467

by dch24 (#44346647) Attached to: Microsoft Stock Drops 11% In a Day
If we're making a list of things that were innovative about the iPhone that led to its success, why not include these?

d) Industrial design, such as only one prominent button and the iconic white earbuds
e) Marketing, also known as the "reality distortion field"
f) Desktop integration. From a technical standpoint, I just want a media player that acts as a dumb disk so I can drag-and-drop music files. But I continually meet new people who want iTunes as their "media gateway." It started long before the iPhone was released but it was part of the vertical that Apple still dominates.

Comment: Re:Metro UI (Score 1) 467

by dch24 (#44339021) Attached to: Microsoft Stock Drops 11% In a Day
Couldn't agree more on a lot of what you said there.

That is why the majority no one gives a shit about Microsoft & their products anymore.

Oh, lots of businesses have no other choice. Apple isn't trying to replace Microsoft, though it looks like they're being backed into that corner a little at a time.

Google does some things fair enough, like GMail, but Docs/Drive/whatever it is today has not taken out Office. The fact that LibreOffice is growing so fast means there is a business opportunity to displace Microsoft Office. Not saying that will be easy but LibreOffice is doing it.

Another entire area where Microsoft isn't going away is Accounting (not Finance, those HFT guys are all on Linux).

Somebody stick a fork in it already. Start a business that disrupts it! (Too busy laying fiber to do it myself.)

Comment: Re:Metro UI (Score 4, Interesting) 467

by dch24 (#44338347) Attached to: Microsoft Stock Drops 11% In a Day
Hindsight is 20/20. Here are a few things Microsoft should have done:
  • - Listen to users before releasing Win8, not wait until Win8.1 to start "listening"
  • - Listen to users when market testing the first run of Surface ads, not wait until reviewers have panned the ads, the product, and the OS, and then start making decent ads
  • - Listen to users before forcing UEFI Secure Boot (without an unlock), not wait until there is an uproar to say oops, change the Win8 logo requirements (desktop PCs escape armageddon... for now)
  • - Listen to users before forcing always-on connected DRM with the new Xbox, not wait until there is an uproar then take some more things away from their platform
  • - News flash! Listen to your shareholders! and get rid of Ballmer (ok, clearly there has not been a full scale shareholder revolt. yet.)
  • - Listen to users who are jumping ship for Google and Apple, to see if a more humble Microsoft could win some of them back

Instead it's more of the same old Ballmer monkey tricks.

Comment: Re:Yep (Score 1) 407

by dch24 (#44173591) Attached to: NSA Backdoors In Open Source and Open Standards: What Are the Odds?
No.

I'll pick RSA 1024-bit public/private key crypto as my example. A 1024-bit key only takes 128 bytes.

Wikipedia says that 1E18 Joules is an absolute minimum for brute-forcing a single AES-128 key. (Unless you can invent an entirely different kind of computer - see quantum computers.) I'll be nice and let you do it at that cost, even though generally that would be considered impossible.

If you can brute-force 128 bits for 1E18 Joules, you only need to repeat that effort twice for each additional bit. (1024-128)*log(2)/log(10)+18 = 287.723. If my calculations are correct, that's 1E287 Joules required to brute force a 1024-bit key. Even if there's a way to speed that up 100 times, 1E285 Joules is more than a googol squared (1E100*1E100) times the total mass-energy of the observable universe.

After you've surrounded the entire universe in some kind of collector and annihilated all matter inside it to power your key-cracker, you'll have cracked just 297 bits!

Now I've hand-waved away a lot of multipliers that would actually affect your choice of implementation but the fact stands: no, the encryption cannot be brute-forced with "enough hardware and time."

Comment: Re:You have got to be... (Score 1) 284

by dch24 (#43944791) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Best To Disconnect Remote Network Access?
Re; "article must be a joke" ...

You must be new here.

Now to say something more helpful: good luck getting the vendor to agree to anything. The equipment has been sold, signed, and delivered. Whatever contract was put in place by the CEO over golf, that's what you get to try and work with.

But is it worth turning into a BOFH just to screw the manufacturing guys?

If the problem is really as bad as it sounds, maybe it's time to start looking for another job.

Comment: Re:You are wrong. (Score 4, Interesting) 299

by dch24 (#42321601) Attached to: Gmail Drops Support for Connecting To Pop3 Servers With Self -Signed Certs
Examples of snooping that lack the ability to do a MITM attack:

1. Listening to an encrypted wifi session, then breaking the encryption offline

2. Tapping into undersea fiber (the listening party is going to have a hard enough time exfiltrating the snooped bytes; setting up a "take over" command and associated equipment is prohibitive due to both the technical and political risks)

3. Listening device inside a government facility. China famously does this for example by using a small office-supply firm to get equipment into a US facility somewhere is Asia; the copy machine has a hard drive like any copy machine and there's nothing suspicious about that, right? And then you find the second, and the third, and the fourth hard drive hidden in places you would never look. The data is exfiltrated only when the machine is replaced as part of a regular service contract.
Need I go on?

C'est magnifique, mais ce n'est pas l'Informatique. -- Bosquet [on seeing the IBM 4341]

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