Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Uber supporters (Score 1) 40

I can get an Uber any time of the day or night to take me where I want to go. An Uber shows up within 5 minutes - always. If I call the taxi company for a cab, one may or may not show up between 45 minutes and an hour - if one shows up at all. Uber drivers are held accountable for the condition of their cars, their appearance, their personality. Taxi drivers stink, are rude and their cars are always a mess. I would never use a taxi. I always use uber.
Better yet, for the world traveler, Uber works in pretty much all major cities, tied to the same account. No messing around with local vs foreigner rates, tipping, blah blah blah. Just get in and GO. Then get OUT when you arrive. I HATE arguing with cabbies over fares, rates etc etc. it's absurd. Uber gets rid of all that and gives me a simple interface and one point of billing. If Uber was forced out of my city, I'd go buy a car rather than use Taxis.

Comment Re:Brave polling, but in real life? (Score 1) 224

Thanks for the insight, however. I was curious as to why you'd work so hard to protect something that's really not a whole lot in the scope of things. As it appears you're still employed there's also that whole reputation thing. Somehow, I have a fine reputation and I'm generally a prick in some ways. Well, more of a hermit who doesn't really like a whole lot of drama. I imagine that my view is biased due to my history and how I am able to process things today. Again, thanks.

No problem. The only thing I'd add here is that I did in the past have a job that required security clearance. While I don't have any data relating to that job anywhere, I do keep certain security practices somewhat out of habit. It also doesn't hurt to keep up with some of the state-of-the-art and best practices.


Comment Re:Brave polling, but in real life? (Score 1) 224

After reading your comments down to this far, are you a kiddie porn collector or something? What do you have that you're so worried about?

I don't have any illegal (or even immoral) activity to be worried about, which is certainly why none of this has ever been an issue.

A big part of the way I run my passwords stems purely from workflow. I decided several years ago that I wanted to beef up my online password security for systems that don't accept 2048+-bit keys (so pretty much every website I use that has a login component), by ensuring that each one has a unique, nearly as long as possible random password. I wasn't going to be able to memorize these for the large number of systems I have access to, so I had to adopt a workflow for generating random website passwords, and store them in an encrypted keychain where they could be easily retrieved in a manner where I didn't even have to see them. I didn't do this because I have anything to hide, but because I do what I can to ensure security, and that if one password is somehow cracked or stolen, it won't affect any more than a single system.

Of course, you don't have to have anything you would think would need hiding to be denied access at the border. For example, this Canadian woman was denied at the US border because of prior clinical depression (how US border officials even knew caused quite the storm of controversy, as they had been given illegal access to medical records). Now I've never had depression, but if they can block you from entering for that, then maybe they could get wind of that bad hangnail I had the other week and decide not to let me in the next time I travel on business.

If I had a more specific reason for guarding my privacy, please be assured I wouldn't discuss it with you publicly here on /.


Comment Re:RISK vs CHANCE (Score 1) 161

Meh, we found so many holes in the Law of Conversation of Energy 100 years or so ago, we had to completely redefine it to include "mass" as a kind of energy. I bet we do that again, one day - broaden the definition to maintain something being conserved. (Also, did you know there is no conservation of energy in General Relativity? Strange but true.)

More fun: an act of divine intervention could conserve energy; it would just require a statistically unlikely sequence of events. Plenty of energy coming from the Sun to power all sorts of wild effects, and the Sun itself is a chaotic system that sometimes bursts energy in amazing ways.

Comment Re:Issue is more complicated (Score 1) 563

To quote Linus about "professional"

Because if you want me to 'act professional,' I can tell you that I'm not interested. I'm sitting in my home office wearing a bathrobe. The same way I'm not going to start wearing ties, I'm *also* not going to buy into the fake politeness, the lying, the office politics and backstabbing, the passive aggressiveness, and the buzzwords. Because THAT is what 'acting professionally' results in: people resort to all kinds of really nasty things because they are forced to act out their normal urges in unnatural ways.

Comment Re:will they "cost no more to" buy? (Score 1) 180

Well it's down to 55c/ kWh over an entire year. Over 11 years it's actually cheaper than electricity. Assuming 50% utilization and a 25 year service life (rated, real world is expected to be 30) they are in fact both cheaper than grid electricity and by quite a bit! Especially if you are living on an island. Which about a billion humans are right now.

Comment Re: RISK vs CHANCE (Score 1) 161

Odds are zero as there is no proof or reason to think that there is a god. Asteroids? Yes we have proof of those.

We had no proof or reason to think that there was dark matter, until a few decades ago. Turns out it's most of the matter in the universe. Funny how things turn out. That's the point of Pascal's wager after all: even if the odds are "nearly 0 - as sure as we can really be of anything that it's 0", when you multiply that by infinity you still get infinity.

The flaw in Pascal's wager is more subtle than that - think a bit more about it.

Comment Re:Socalim is organized psychopathy (Score 1) 388

But everyone should not be treated equally in the eyes of the law - the guilty should be treated differently than the innocent - that's rather the point, after all. There are many totally impartial and unbiased systems one could contrive (like flipping a coin) that would in no way serve justice, but would be perfectly fair.

And justice is hardly the ideal goal anyhow. The ideal goal is to do the right thing. Hard to get much agreement on what that is, of course, but for particularly egregious mismatches between the law and the Good we have jury nullification, for example.

Comment Re:Socalim is organized psychopathy (Score 1) 388

Good luck with your Utopia where no one does productive work (but everyone has jobs). Why you'd make people do needless busywork instead of just giving them money is unclear, but hey, it's your Utopia. I'm sure it will work out as well all all the other Utopias man has tried.

In the Carboniferous Epoch we were promised abundance for all,
By robbing selected Peter to pay for collective Paul;
But, though we had plenty of money, there was nothing our money could buy,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "If you don't work you die."

Comment Re:RISK vs CHANCE (Score 3, Interesting) 161

Divine intervention is not a legal worry, as there is no god

You seem very sure of yourself, but what if He's just hiding? Sure, the odds of that seem small - quite small. But are they higher or lower than the chance of an asteroid strike? Even if the odds are "infinitesimal" we're multiplying by infinity here, right? Ahh, Pascal's wager - everything old is new again.

Comment Re:Socalim is organized psychopathy (Score 1) 388

More than half of Americans own stock, directly or indirectly. It was up to 2/3s before the 08 crash. I fully encourage others to invest as I have, to take ownership of the means of production (I've lived on half my take-home pay for nearly 20 years now, and it definitely adds up).

However, keep in mind that one equal portion of all the publicly traded stock in the US is only about the same as a year's median wage, and the earnings on that are only about 5%. That's not going to make a real difference.

Comment Re:Brave polling, but in real life? (Score 1) 224

So you don't plan to use your e-mail while you're traveling?

Fair enough, but then why bring your computer at all, if you can't do anything with it?

If I was a border agent and you were telling me all this, I'd find it rather hard to believe that you brought your computer, that can't log into anything and you don't have the ability to do so. I think I'd hold you for awhile until my experts could have a crack at your machine and see if a week in detention might change your mind.

A fair question, which has a perfectly valid answer.

If I'm travelling on business, I'll ensure I have my work e-mail available. I have a separate laptop that I use purely for work purposes, and is setup against my workplaces Exchange server. That e-mail address is only used for work related purposes; it's not the e-mail registered against personal services like Facebook, or my banking, /., etc.

So if some border official wants to go through my work e-mails, they're going to have the lawyers of a multi-billion dollar American corporation to deal with. I'm perfectly fine with that. They won't have any access to any of my personal accounts or details, and I won't be able to give it to them.


Comment Re:Socalim is organized psychopathy (Score 1) 388

The topic is the US, friend. Yes, East Elbonia sucks, but then those jobs are often the best available in-country, so there's no easy answers there.

In a properly free market, do you really think the most odious jobs would fetch the lowest pay?

Supply and demand, friend, supply and demand. Jobs that few people can do will pay more than jobs anyone can do, even if they'd only do it as a last resort. (Truly odious jobs do command a premium, of course, but only relative to similar, less-odious work).

Labor will capture it's fair share when unemployment is actually 0%. That is, everyone who needs or wants a job has one

You don't deserve a job as a reward for breathing. You must contribute something that others in society want or need enough to pay for. If you have no skills that enable you to do that (and that's a moving target, as automation progresses), you shouldn't expect a job. You could reasonably expect help with the cost of training, however, and the US is in this weird place where we encourage people who need vocational training to instead go to college and get no job skills and $50k in debt. That's certainly a serious issue we need to fix.

Comment Re:Brave polling, but in real life? (Score 1) 224

They can make you reset your passwords.

Just because you don't know your Facebook password doesn't mean you can't login, it just means you need to reset it.

The keychain doesn't help you with that.

Except that my e-mail passwords are also long, random strings that I don't know, and password resets typically are sent to your e-mail. Those e-mail passwords are stored in my keychain, so it does indeed help with that. If I can't get to the password reset e-mail and link, I can't reset my password.


Comment Re:Ignore the "humans almost went extinct" bit (Score 1) 54

That's not from the Nature letter; apparently that's some off-the-wall addition from the submitter.

There is a coincidence of timing. However, given that previous estimates for this particular sector collapse (see my comment elsewhere for the dozens of other "recent, geologically" Atlantic sector collapses) were between 50 and 150 thousand years ago, it is little more than coincidence.

If there were a tight human population bottleneck (as opposed to a more drawn out but less severe one, with comparable cumulative genetic effects) of a few dozen generations (a thousand years, for a round number), you could fit this localised problem, the global Toba problem, and a Yellowstone super volcano all into a mere ten thousand years and still have several thousand years left over for humanity to continue expanding at 5% per generation (1 extra child per 20 families per generation), giving easily a 10-fold population increase to offset a 9-fold decimation.

You will lose an important tape file.