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Comment Re:Gigantic, gaping Lenovo-shaped hole (Score 1) 163

Nevermind that in creating such a thing they've created a gigantic security hole in the hardware itself that an attacker could potentially use to make sure your computer is a permanent part of someones botnet!

You think that wasn't the whole point to begin with? A remotely activated sleeper that sits on everyone's Windows machine at boot, and can run any executable dropped on the filesystem, silently and at every boot? The .gov is probably wringing their hands at the possibilities. Seriously. They're already doing it on phones, why not on everyone's personal computers as well?

Comment Re:Can't wait to get this installed in my house (Score 1) 514

That, "SOME DAY" it might be more economical to install an identical system does not change the fact that it's still a silly splurge NOW.

If the system does NOT pay for itself over a reasonable period of time (and within the lifetime of the product warranty), you're splurging. Not spending wisely.

I pay close to $250/month for power (it just went up 47% in CT in the last 6 months for the same power usage). So if the 10kWh PowerWall costs me $3,500 (+inverter, grid tie-in, installation), then it pays for itself in ~18 months. That's a pretty easy sell from my perspective.

Adding $10k of solar panels to the system to go completely off the grid, just adds to that value, and to the resale price of my house if I choose to sell it within the next 10-20 years. As panel efficiencies improve, I can upgrade those panels, or add an additional PowerWall, and increase that independence.

Totally worth it, in my opinion.

Besides, many (most?) communities are now putting a quota on the number of solar installations, because of the pressure they put on the common utility/grid system (yes, they do -add- more pressure to the grid, contrary to common thought, especially at nighttime and when there is heavy, localized cloudcover), so if you wait, you may find yourself the only one on the block who can't add solar because it's prohibited. A PowerWall tied to the common utility can relieve some of that pressure, and increase the independence from a constant feed from the power company.

Comment There's one rule about Facebook... (Score 1) 135

Never, EVER accept a Friend request from someone you haven't met, physically, in person. Seriously.

I treat Facebook and LinkedIn with the same policy, and I have dozens of Friend Requests pending for YEARS, which will never be accepted. If I haven't met the person and pressed palms with them, then they don't get connected to me using social platforms, period.

You would be wise to do the same. With all the dark profiles being built behind the scenes, it makes sense to keep things clean and tight.

Comment Mass Surveillance will not stop... (Score 1) 239

...they've already tasted the power, and they want more.

It begins with your online accounts, back-door access to the data systems you know and "trust" (Yahoo, GMail, Facebook, Twitter, etc.), extending on to IoT monitoring (XBox Kinect sending your data to Microsoft nightly? Samsung TVs recording your room and sharing it with third parties?), license plate cameras everywhere, mailbox RFID monitoring, Stinger cells and much more.

Nay, the only thing that will stop Mass Surveillance at this point, is two words: Mass Extinction.

Comment Re:SIM locks? (Score 1) 135

SIM-lock issue is no biggie, you can always simply buy the phone without telco as middleman.

...except in the United States of America.

You might be outside the US, but you literally cannot purchase a phone in the US without specifying which carrier you're going to bind that phone to, contractually. Not Samsung/HTC/LG/Motorola/Google, not Microsoft, not Nokia, not iPhone and not BlackBerry.

So you're luck to be outside the US. For the rest of us, we're stuck paying full price for phones off-contract, and still being held to carrier restrictions.

Comment Re:None of them. (Score 1) 436

I use this on my Android device with AdAway with tremendous success. I also use Android Firewall with some custom rules to block annoying apps from trying to send my data through servers in China, Romania, etc.

Here's my AdAway custom lists:

http://adaway.org/hosts.txt
  http://hosts-file.net/ad_serve...
  http://pgl.yoyo.org/adservers/...
  http://someonewhocares.org/hos...
  http://winhelp2002.mvps.org/ho...

Use these, and you'll have a nice, clean, tight setup. I also use Squid on my LAN, and my router is configured to send every packet through Squid (custom iptables rules on the router; a Buffalo Wireless running dd-wrt), and on the Squid side, I block about 12,000 separate ad URLs, domains and sites, so again, the experience for anyone on my segment, is nice and clean and fast.

The side benefit of Squid, is that I can see every single request, phone home, ping, malicious or otherwise, that my devices try to do, and I can permit, prohibit, redirect or block entirely based on schedule, as I wish.

You'd be surprised how chatty a standard iPhone and Android device are, without "training" on the Squid/AdAway side.

"Gort, klaatu nikto barada." -- The Day the Earth Stood Still

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