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Comment: Re:As plain as the googgles on your face (Score 1) 56

by Sloppy (#47427477) Attached to: The Future of Wearables: Standalone, Unobtrusive, and Everywhere

As intrusive as the Google Glass has proven to be, it will only be worse when observation recording tech is more difficult to detect.

I disagree. The exact opposite: when people stop noticing, they will stop caring. It won't be perceived as intrusive anymore, and people will be less annoyed by it.

It's the conspicuousness of the camera in Google Glass, the constant reminder that you might be recorded, that makes most people feel creeped out. For the previous decade leading up to that product, nobody cared about small+cheap camera tech itself. And people walk/drive by fixed-position cameras all the time, and don't give a fuck there either. Peoples's behavior shows that "intrusiveness" happens when a cameras looks like a camera, and I suspect it also has something to do with being face-level, literally "in your face" and you're making eye contact with it, unlike the case with less conspicuous cameras. It was never about privacy; it's some aspect of self-consciousness kind of related to privacy, but a different thing.

You might say "maybe you, but I sure care. Hell yes it's about privacy." Of course you say that. I'm talking about how people behave and the emotions they display. Not their innermost secret thoughts that they are always terrified to express in voting booths or policy decisions, yet are happy to speak of on the Internet.

You know, the Internet, where they don't have a camera in their face making them all self-conscious! The Internet, where instead of a terrifying 1x1 pixel image that makes you think "WTF is that? That's weird! Are you watching me?" you now instead see a bunch of "like buttons" which are obviously for liking things, not getting your browser to send a request to an unrelated tracking server.

In addition, there's a certain inevitability about it all. The cameras have been there a long time, there are more today, and there will be even more tomorrow. You can't do anything about it, except stay at home. So you'll either accept or you'll go insane and get selected out. You'll handle it. (Contrast that to Google Glass, the one small camera out of the hundreds out there, that you actually recognize and is also rare enough that there's little social cost to shunning. With GG you can refuse to accept and also stay within social norms, so GG is different.)

Comment: Re:To what end? (Score 1) 138

by Arker (#47427281) Attached to: After NSA Spying Flap, Germany Asks CIA Station Chief to Depart
"My impression, also from German newspapers etc., is that most germans including politicians are truely mad and are seriously considering to cool down relations with the USA."

As they should be, frankly the reaction seems inexplicably mild.

Can you imagine the reaction if the shoe was on the other foot? If this was a BD spy caught infiltrating the CIA?

A 'cool down' in relations would be a serious understatement.

Comment: Re: haven't we learned from the last 25 exploits? (Score 1) 68

by Arker (#47426261) Attached to: 'Rosetta Flash' Attack Leverages JSONP Callbacks To Steal Credentials
"Over the years, I've done a lot of work with games and simulations for training."

OK. That really doesnt have anything to do with the web, however. Sure, the web can be used to deliver the project - that doesnt mean it has to actually run inside the browser. There is a HUGE difference.

"We could not have produced this educational game with just HTML."

I get where you are coming from but I still think it's far off the mark. The web is not a game platform, that is not it's purpose, so 'we could not do games this way' is not a very telling criticism.

You can use better tools to make the games, and use the web merely to deliver the game. Where is the problem with that?

It would NOT be slower, clunkier, or more prone to error. It could be done using exactly the same technologies in virtually exactly the same way - the only difference would be very slightly less easy to get it started, and in return for that, your browser is no longer a malware vector.

Or, it could be done using technologies better suited for the purpose, in which case I would expect the results to be less clunky, faster, and more stable - but the development process would be more expensive as well.

I get why you would want to use RAD to lower costs, just not why you see the tiny convenience of running in the browser automatically as worth the cost of turning the web into a malware distribution network.

Comment: Re:Bitcoin isn't money but it's still a financial (Score 1) 118

by Sloppy (#47424471) Attached to: Judge Shoots Down "Bitcoin Isn't Money" Argument In Silk Road Trial

Bitcoin's primary purpose is to traffic/launder money and goods.

Objection. Will stipulate that its primary purpose is to traffic. But I call mega-bullshit on its primary or even secondary purpose being to launder, though there might be a way one could use Bitcoin for that.

Comment: Re:haven't we learned from the last 25 exploits? (Score 1) 68

by Arker (#47420705) Attached to: 'Rosetta Flash' Attack Leverages JSONP Callbacks To Steal Credentials
"An HTML-only web is great for relatively static content, but not so great for anything much beyond that. "

This sounds like nonsense to me, but I will give you the benefit of the doubt and ask you for *concrete* examples of what you are talking about. I have yet to be cited a single good example here - very often what is being done would work just fine in HTML, with less overhead, but the 'designers' just do not understand HTML, or have any desire to learn it, so they do things this way instead.

Certainly javascript can produce a slicker appearance and make certain things a bit smoother - but to do so it sacrifices device-independence and browser agnosticism - critical advantages that underlie the success of the web and whose loss can only undermine it.

Now if you build a proper web page, and then *enhance* it with javascript sanely, preserving graceful fallbacks, that would be fine. You can have your slick interface without sacrificing the web. And I can choose to avoid your slick interface so as not to sacrifice my security.

The 'designers' that cant be bothered to do that, and the suits that keep them employed, are the reason we cant have nice things. In this case, javascript.

"Is it so difficult to grok why you might want content to change on the client?"

Not difficult to understand why it was desired.

The point is it's harmful and been proven harmful, and far too harmful for the small advantages it brings to outweigh that.

Comment: Re:haven't we learned from the last 25 exploits? (Score 1) 68

by Arker (#47414205) Attached to: 'Rosetta Flash' Attack Leverages JSONP Callbacks To Steal Credentials
"If you want the web to be useful, you should be pushing for only the most minimal use of Javascript."

When this crap first started getting pushed, a lot of us saw the potential problems coming and objected. We were assured it was only to be used to 'spice up' webpages, not to replace them.

Such assurances are obviously shit. If it's allowed to use it, then the lowest common denominator of self-proclaimed 'designers' can, will, and must overuse it. This overuse expands steadily and predictably until and unless there is effective pushback. Today we have reached the point where the typical corporate 'website' (and I use scare quotes because these things are NOT websites, at all) consists of hundreds of executable files, fetched from dozens of different servers, all of which the browser is expected to suck in and execute without so much as giving you a warning.

And contrary to the hilarious suggestion I see at the top of many many webpages today ("Enable Javascript for a better user experience") this does not bring with it any substantial improvements for the user. Quite the contrary, it results in a worse immediate experience (no, I didnt want a dozen popups, autoplaying video presentations, and a huge advertisement that floats over the text so I cannot see it!) and also in the longer term (like a week later when you discover that some random ad server sent your browser a rootkit and it happily executed it, oops!.)

But the point is history has proven this is a bad code drives out good situation. If it's allowed, it will take over, just like a weed.

Turn off javascript. See the web as it really is. And support the web that still exists, before it's too late.

Comment: Re:say wha? (Score 4, Insightful) 68

by Arker (#47412415) Attached to: 'Rosetta Flash' Attack Leverages JSONP Callbacks To Steal Credentials
"English translation: as usual, Flash is useless except as a vector for malware, viruses, trojans and keyloggers. Remove Flash from your system."

That's actually not quite true. Flash is a great way to develop simple games quickly and cheaply.

The problem isnt Flash itself (which is on the whole a fine product, used correctly) but the idea of using Flash as a substitute for a webpage, the installation of it as a browser plugin, and the auto-execution of it by the browser. None of that should be tolerated.

It's still possible to get a standalone flash interpreter and only feed it local, vetted files, which is really fine (or as close to fine as lots of other things you do every day, at least.)  But Adobe seems to be trying their best to discourage that and force everyone to use it as an auto-enabled browser component instead. The one way to use the program that causes major problems is also the one way they want you to use it.

Everyone who has been infected as a result of this should really get together and sue these arseholes, because money is the only language they understand.

Comment: Re:haven't we learned from the last 25 exploits? (Score 5, Insightful) 68

by Arker (#47412367) Attached to: 'Rosetta Flash' Attack Leverages JSONP Callbacks To Steal Credentials
Excellent advice.

Expect to be flamed into oblivion by all the 'web devs' that cant be bothered to learn how HTML works and rely on this crap instead, though.

The web - the real web, the HTML web, appears to be shrinking at the moment. New content is often hidden behind some kind of opaque app crap for no apparent reason and with no actual webpage for fallback (thanks google!) and old content occasionally gets removed as well. Each time this happens, it makes it even harder and less likely to revive the healthy web we once built with such love and care.

And naturally the people that are making a profit on this crap will just keep right on cranking it out as long as that is true.

The real victims here are future generations, who should inherit that world-wide web, but are set to inherit something entirely different - and inferior in every way (when judged from the users perspective - from the perspective of big Advertising of course the story will be different, but we built this web for humans, not for marketing.)

Comment: Re:Dirty power (Score 1) 165

by Pharmboy (#47411463) Attached to: My most recent energy-saving bulbs last ...

Generally speaking, anything with lots of parts has more points of failures. Since CFLs all have ballasts, my experience has been that spikes does take a toll, by virtue of them dying after the incandescent is just a big resister. Yes, it can break but it is fairly tolerant by virtue of being tungsten and having no other parts. This is why I spend the money for the better CFLs. I've been using CFLs for well over a decade now. Been using them since the 90s, so not an expert, but I've owned a lot of them.

Comment: Re:I doubt the dna stuff will come true (Score 1) 347

by Arker (#47410185) Attached to: Here Comes the Panopticon: Insurance Companies
"The real problem we are having is not the loss of privacy per se, it's the abuse of private information. Most people are fine letting Onstar know their current location. We are not fine with Onstar telling anyone that information - not the police, not our wife, not our boss. "

It sounds more like the real problem is that people are so stupid they do not realize that you cannot have your cake and eat it too. If Onstar has the information, others will be able to obtain it, whether by hook or crook.

If you want your privacy you must defend it consistently, not only when it is convenient and inexpensive to do so.

Comment: nice tech, dubious products (Score 1) 150

by Sloppy (#47408181) Attached to: Coddled, Surveilled, and Monetized: How Modern Houses Can Watch You

IMHO all this tech is basically good, but I should point out that I also consider a large wooden horses to be basically good things, too. (They can be neat works of art, or convenient sources of fire wood.) That doesn't mean I'm saying you should wheel all the ones you find, through your city gates! There are other issues besides the utility value of wooden horses. It's the tech that should be celebrated, not necessarily all the products that use it. Tech and products are two very different things, even if related.

There's a pretty easy way to judge the ads for this stuff: what protocols does the product speak? Do you already have software in your repo that speaks that protocol?

And of course, you don't necessarily have to use someone else's service to get the device to work, right? (I'm not even saying you necessarily shouldn't use their service, but if you have to then the product is almost certainly garbage.)

Comment: Re:Got To Be A Ritual (Score 1) 63

by Arker (#47406753) Attached to: IBM Tries To Forecast and Control Beijing's Air Pollution
"You're a bit too literal."

And you are a bit too soft-headed, at least on this issue.

"Noise pollution," "heat pollution," and "light pollution" also involve an excess of something that naturally occurs in the environment.

And all three are BS terms. Marketing terms, where they verbally associate item X with item Y even though it does not belong, simply because they believe it will provoke the emotional response they want. THIS is real pollution - of the language. This fits in the same bucket with the 'wars' on 'drugs' and 'terror'- it's language being used to prevent, not to facilitate, accurate thinking and accurate communication.

This is where effective manipulation of the population starts, and this is where it needs to be rejected.

Excessive noise, excessive heat, and excessive light are perfectly accurate terms. The 'pollution' variants are inaccurate, marketing terms, chosen to provoke an emotional response in a desired direction. Lies, to speak plainly.

"So it's a bit naïve to claim that just because something naturally occurs in the environment, an excess won't be bad for society (and shouldn't be controlled)."

It would be, except I made no such claim. Go back, re-read my post, as many times as you want. It simply does not say that.

This is how bad you (and it's not to pick on you personally, this is a general pattern today) have had your own head loused up at this point with marketing-inspired BS that you automatically read that claim into what I said, and responded to it, even though I did NOT say it and did not even imply it in any way.

I simply pointed out that CO2 is not a pollutant. And then moved on to my main point. And both the replies I get ignore the main point entirely and respond, not to what I actually wrote, but to some sort of pre-programmed straw-man image of what I *must* believe, no matter that it is completely inaccurate.

Comment: Re:Good idea, but terrible implementation (Score -1) 110

by Arker (#47404379) Attached to: YouTube Issuing "Report Cards" On Carriers' Streaming Speeds
"First, what gives with the goofy webpages that try to scroll like pages of a book?"

It's not really a webpage. 'Designers' have never liked the web and love to break it - this is the result. 884 lines of idiocy, full of 'favicons' and malicious attempts to direct my browser to Facebook! of all things, but no actual webpage, not even a fallback apology when viewed with a sane browser, nothing but a title and a blank page.

But to answer your question, what gives? Cranial rectosis. It's an epidemic, and obviously it's hitting google pretty hard right now too.

Comment: Re:Got To Be A Ritual (Score 1) 63

by Arker (#47403463) Attached to: IBM Tries To Forecast and Control Beijing's Air Pollution
"Oxygen isn't a pollutant either, unless you breath too much of it. Similarly for nitrogen."

How much you breath has absolutely nothing to do with it. Oxygen, Nitrogen, and CO2 are the natural components of the atmosphere, not pollutants.

"Here's a clue, have a sense of proportion. Pump enough CO2 into the atmosphere, big surprise, the atmosphere heats up. Don't want to believe it is problem? Please, don't. However, you cannot ignore the CO2 acidifying the oceans and taking out coral reefs and shell fish. Don't think that's a problem? The ocean is the base of the food chain. Surely, you care about that, eh? Nah? Okay, please go back to sleep."

This does not appear to be relevant to anything I posted, indeed, you appear to behaving quite the conversation with an imaginary friend there.

"I've seen the forgeries I've sent out." -- John F. Haugh II (jfh@rpp386.Dallas.TX.US), about forging net news articles