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Comment What the hell is cybercapability (or cyberweapon)? (Score 2) 129 129

There is no such thing as a cyberweapon. There is hacking/cracking and that is generally done through technical weaknesses and/or social engineering. There is no such thing as a cybertank or a cybergun, something that can actively break through something that it was not intended to go through. There is no software that can simply break through a web server by sheer force.

Using any kind of military jargon with what amounts to a technical capability of a piece of software is (car analogy) like telling us that foreign car mechanics and imported engines are capable of destroying our infrastructure and instead of fixing the engines or building our own to counteract it we have to deploy our own car mechanics and engines to foreign countries.

Using these analogies of cyberweapons with technical experts just sounds like a bunch of military people heard of the printing press and now they want to destroy people with paper cuts.

Comment Re:False History (Score 1) 64 64

Correct, I remember it was also a great proxy country if you wanted to sell cars, computers etc into the actual Soviet bloc. One of my first jobs actually involved transporting cars from France and Belgium to "dealers" in Zagreb during the Yugoslav War. It involved bribes at the Austrian border to get past miles of border traffic and past checkpoints.

Comment Re:We're actually better off (Score 1) 60 60

Maybe the OS didn't have a UUID but pretty much all of the hardware did. Your BIOS and CPU's have been able to return serial numbers for a very long time. The generic CPUID came into existence around the 80486 but before that there were almost always methods to return said information. I remember even on my 80286, there were tools that could read unique BIOS information.

Comment Re:No, not the battery (Score 1) 60 60

It is useful for HTML5 local applications. The problem with JavaScript is that variables can be transmitted without a whole lot of warning to the user(s). If we had something akin to Perl's Taint Mode - something that prevents you from using or affecting 'outside' data sources without your explicit cleaning/permission in JavaScript, we'd be a whole lot further.

Comment Re:Difficulty (Score 1) 270 270

I was ~8 when I used Windows 3.1 for the first time and had no problem figuring it out. It looked a lot like MacOS and XWindows, so I was pretty familiar with it. There were a number of other systems that looked similar that were GUI's for DOS before Windows 3.

I quit using Windows a little after Windows 95 in place of Red Hat 5 (the original, not RHEL) because Windows was crashing all the time when using the network even with bog-standard hardware (an original NE2000).

Comment Re:HAHAHAHA! (Score 1) 231 231

Most parts of driving is very easy (stay between the lines and a proper distance from the car in front of you). A fully-autonomous grid is also very easy (all participants being autonomous and communicating).

What's not easy is integrating humans driving and autonomous cars driving together (the intermediate hybrid system so-to-say which, unless government mandates otherwise, will be required) because the system has to react to unexpected and irrational behavior from humans driving (cutting in front of you, jaywalking from invisible locations, ignoring road signs and signals).

Comment Re:electric power tools (Score 1) 352 352

Technically, I could. Thanks to the widespread availability of (free) CAD software and associated calculators and the availability of the information about bridge making, I could make a bridge or a sky scraper. It would be horribly over-engineered but it would meet current code and probably be both the most expensive, least maintainable although most reliable bridge in the world. It would also take me a few years.

I actually just engineered a fire sprinkler system in my home, totally up to code as verified by our city's architects and fire engineers. It's also horribly over-engineered (too many sprinkler heads, bigger pipes, unnecessary valves and gauges, plenty of leftover capacity) and it took me several weeks just to get the drawings and calculations out but it saved me personally $7000 (a professional install was quoted at ~$8k, I did it for less than $1k).

If you want horribly slow software that is very expensive to maintain but also very robust, you can give the tools to a newbie with the willpower to do it and you would get something, eventually.

Comment Hack or feature? (Score 3, Interesting) 85 85

The thing has an entire API unauthenticated to whoever is able to connect to it (https:///system_http_api/).

It's well documented that the point is not to have these things port-forwarded on your router but to be controlled through their proprietary gateway which comes with a monthly fee. Sure you can surf to it on your local network but that's more of a convenience and a lot of features the API exposes are not in the GUI.

Comment Re: Wow, end of an era. (Score 1) 152 152

There possibly IS a host of other problems besides the kernel. We still ran(run) OpenSSL/OpenSSH and Apache on those boxes so the automatic exploits that run against them may be numerous however they are typically very well sandboxed (better than some current *NIX'es) so although you won't get access to any data, they make for a great bot.

I actually have two different-era SPARC we are still supporting (the latest I believe runs Solaris 5, the first one still has an early IBM Token Ring card bridged by a very dusty device to Ethernet).

Comment Re:Or let us keep our hard-earned money (Score 1) 571 571

I understand there are some tracks in the US that allow you to take advanced college-level classes but those seem to be elected rather than mandatory. I'm not talking AP-courses that prep a (rich) kid for college. I am talking about 'basic, mandatory by the state education'.

I went to one of the worst schools in my area, inner-city (positioned next to a red light district) only because they were the only one with an electrical/electronics track education in the area. They closed a few years after my graduation due to an increasing crime problem amongst students. My elected classes were an additional 8-12h/week on top of the regular school hours (no course replacement)

Comment Re:Or let us keep our hard-earned money (Score 2, Interesting) 571 571

If you don't mind making most foods and fuel unaffordable for the poorest. If you do decide to end all federal subsidies, you include immense amounts of farming and oil subsidies which the 'visible' subsidies between farming and oil are ~$500/person in the US.

If you don't raise wages, a family of 4 would suddenly have to spend $2000/year more on foods and fuel alone (~$160/month). That is not even including the $6000/year that the US government gives away to other big business such as banks and tech companies, retirement funding etc just to keep these companies from destroying either the environment or the workforce.

I would love to see our money go to 'better' companies but then you also need to stimulate a workforce that works 15-20h/week at double the current wages.

There is simply not enough work left in the US to keep everyone employed and things have gotten way too expensive to keep anything but farming here. The US is also lagging massively behind in education starting all the way at first grade and it will take at least 20 years before the first students capable of doing a proper job will graduate IF you reform the education system. As a comparison, I graduated from a "foreign" school at 18 (basically high school) with mathematics and science at a level of a second year bachelor's student in the US (some things I learned in the last year mathematics classes were multi-variable calculus, linear algebra, differential equations and geometry and an introduction to chaos theory).

Comment Re:Whats left unsaid... (Score 1) 120 120

Copper as in either cable or DSL has been paid for under FCC Title II. Verizon FiOS has classified itself as Title II to get the subsidies and tax breaks for it's rollout. ISP's have been collecting and permitted to keep federal and state "taxes" on every bill to implement higher bandwidth services since at least the nineties.

Imagination is more important than knowledge. -- Albert Einstein