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Comment: Better form capabilities ; not a new language (Score 1) 309

by herve_masson (#47222095) Attached to: Google Engineer: We Need More Web Programming Languages

What it takes to create more great app is more about a decent support for modern form elements than a new way to tweak stupid useless dom elements endlessy. How about native table with locked rows/tables ? How about native searchable combos ? etc etc etc... Yes, we can reinvent this weel forever via jQuery + some plugin + ..., but it takes so much wasted energy to do so.

Another language is not necessary a bad thing, it's just not a priority to me. Far from that. Javascript is quite decent when you take the time to use it rigth.

Comment: Re:Wat? (Score 2) 582

by herve_masson (#46766937) Attached to: How Does Heartbleed Alter the 'Open Source Is Safer' Discussion?

The visibility doesn't make it so bugs don't exist. It makes them more likely to be found. This one existed and was found.

I see another lesson here. We (i mean, people in the IT industry) rely on ultra sensible piece of code like openssl, and we blindly use it. We don't question much about how the way this software is created and by who. That's the problem. We put our trust on something we know very little about. Discovering the small team coding openssl is quite a surprise to me. I feel really ashamed to discover this that late. How stupid is that... The feeling that "because so many smart people use openssl must imply strong coding reviews and intense testing" is just plain wrong, period. I should have known that before. I should have care. Open source makes possible to educate yourself on stuff like that.

The lesson is enormous, and comes with an great price tag.

How many of this kind of software is vulnerable and used by all our clients ? How can we improve this efficiently ? Is the openssl a unique case study, or is [your favorite software's name] equally risky ? Real questions with tough answers...

Still, I feel open source will shorten the path to solutions more than closed sources would, as long as we change some important things in our habits. Just my one cent anyway.

Comment: Re:next they will say Mac's get viruses (Score -1) 220

by herve_masson (#46522391) Attached to: Malware Attack Infected 25,000 Linux/UNIX Servers

there's a huge benefit to NOT being the most common user OS.

For years, People keep saying windows attacks are maily/solely related to the OS dominance. Knowing how UNIX and WINDOWS systems work, I knew this reasoning was biased at best. With the market share that apple (and google) now has (all platforms), this logiq no longer works well. Windows viruses/malware are numerous because this OS is really really bad when it comes to system protection. The structure of the OS is faulty, period. None of the windows version has been able to fix that. That is the main reason.

Comment: Text gives a global view of your project (Score 1) 876

by herve_masson (#46193713) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Why Are We Still Writing Text-Based Code?

One of the worst experience I had was fixing a project on msaccess, one of those GUI based coding environment.

MSaccess intend to provide a graphical UI to create database driven apps. I've seen people creating programs this way without having much "text programming language" knowledge, and those program somehow "do the job". As much as I hate ms access, I have to admit it give some people a way to turn ideas into computer programs, without text programming language.

At some point, the same people have more needs, and msaccess becomes unpractical for them. They need people like me (we all need money) to "fix" or "expand" their program, and this is where it turns into nighmare. Graphical UI won't do 100% of the job, and you need to add little TEXT program snipsets here and there (formulas, routines, whatever). This makes the program very very hard to maintain, having pieces of code disseminated in hundred of places, with no way to get a global view of the software.... Needless to say, this also make future changes even more complex and expensive.

This is to me one of the key feature of text programming environment: you can have a global picture of your coding, organized in folders, files, etc. You can grep code parts, find them, merge them, split them, reorganized them, comment them, keeping the whole project well organized all along its evolution.

The only thing I would like more than text file is a rich-text programming language that makes possible to add visually rich comments, designs, etc, but keeping the useful part (the program) purely textual.

Comment: Re:no legal basis (Score 1) 55

by herve_masson (#45915213) Attached to: Google Fined By French Privacy Regulator

This reasoning does not work (at least not everywhere)

Let's take an example. We have some corporation that provide banking and medical insurance services (and giving good prices when using both).
Are you really okay with them crossing both data to evaluate the risk with granting you a loan ? I'm not. They technically "own" both data.
I'm okay is they ASK me about my health, that's a different thing. They could event ask me the permission to read medical files as long as I can reply "no".Nobody will force me to answer this question If I don't want.

That's just an example. We may find tons like that.

I'm glad some country attempt to put some rules here. France is one of them; you have to inform regulator about what data is saved in your business, and HOW you'll use them. This is largely inefficient obviously, due to lack of power. This is what needs to be fixed.

Comment: Re:seems like a weird sanction (Score 1) 55

by herve_masson (#45914439) Attached to: Google Fined By French Privacy Regulator

Can someone please name for me a single site that obtains my consent before storing cookies in my terminal?

Many sites started to do this recently (slashdot to name one), but I find this rather useless since most people have no clue about what a cookie really is. What matters is what google (and others) do with your data, speciffically with the help of 3rd party sites.

This is the worst kind of law

Yeah, you're right, let's do nothing instead... no, kidding, I find this fair and balanced, even though the fine is ridiculously low. Google think they don't have to comply local regulation, this has to be fought.

The french regulation used to have true power and has a good sense of what is ok and what is not in term of data collection and privacy. This became less and less true over time (thanks french politics) and their role is now really limited with the boom of data collection era. This sucks. We need more of this. A lot more. This has to start somewhere, and I'm hoping this is the begining of something here.

Comment: Re:Name change to hide reputation.... (Score 3, Interesting) 180

by herve_masson (#45889177) Attached to: McAfee Brand Name Will Be Replaced By Intel Security

Beeing bloated, buggy, resource consuming, useless, unremovable and unstable seems to be the natural way AV softtware evolve. Some are faster than others; McAfee and Norton reached this evolution milestone long time ago, AVAST and friends are joining the club those days. I have "fixed" about 10 computers the last 2 months, uninstalling this shitware from friends's computer, now using microsoft security software. Not sure there is a solution to this madness....

Notably, people keep thinking "I'm safe because I've Norton/McAfee/whatever ; this can't be the cause of my computer problems". At this, they've been really really good.



Why a Cure For Cancer Is So Elusive 366

Posted by samzenpus
from the still-looking dept.
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "George Johnson writes in the NYT that cancer is on the verge of overtaking heart disease as the No. 1 cause of death and although cancer mortality has actually been decreasing bit by bit in recent decades, the decline has been modest compared with other threats. The diseases that once killed earlier in life — bubonic plague, smallpox, influenza, tuberculosis — were easier obstacles. For each there was a single infectious agent, a precise cause that could be confronted. But there are reasons to believe that cancer will remain much more resistant because it is not so much a disease as a phenomenon, the result of a basic evolutionary compromise. As a body lives and grows, its cells are constantly dividing, copying their DNA — this vast genetic library — and bequeathing it to the daughter cells. They in turn pass it to their own progeny: copies of copies of copies. Along the way, errors inevitably occur. Some are caused by carcinogens but most are random misprints. Mutations are the engine of evolution. Without them we never would have evolved. The trade-off is that every so often a certain combination will give an individual cell too much power. It begins to evolve independently of the rest of the body and like a new species thriving in an ecosystem, it grows into a cancerous tumor. 'Given a long enough life, cancer will eventually kill you — unless you die first of something else (PDF). That would be true even in a world free from carcinogens and equipped with the most powerful medical technology,' concludes Johnson. 'Maybe someday some of us will live to be 200. But barring an elixir for immortality, a body will come to a point where it has outwitted every peril life has thrown at it. And for each added year, more mutations will have accumulated. If the heart holds out, then waiting at the end will be cancer.'"

Comment: Weak by design, not by Snowden (Score 1) 572

The NSA really bet that, over time, none of the thousands of employees having access to this data would leak some of it ? That's really stupid at best. If something is weak, it's by design here. Yes, it takes some real guts to do this leak, but that had to happen. I am actually glad it did.

Comment: Re:Does it replace the DOM? (Score 2) 190

by herve_masson (#45696179) Attached to: Google's Dart Becomes ECMA's Dart

Some people have a near religious approach about what a browser should do, and what it should not. For those guys, the browser is a piece of code that render a "document" ; this is by no mean a way to implement GUIs. The other part of the world is fighting hard to implement GUIs in browsers, and making sure that their GUIS work well in every browser ! Sadly, the standardization groups have many of the first category, and few of the second. And franckly, that really sucks.

Why not aknowledging that a browser, in 2013, is a piece of code that implement rich terminal capabilities and also (mainly?) intend to serve GUIS for apps ? From there, we could add rich UI elements to the totally outdated and pathetic form elements collection that HTML implements. A lot of people spend a hell of time to workaround CSS/DOM oddities or limits, simply because the web technologies was not made for GUIs... Such a move would likely to be way more useful than many recent additions to web standards.

That being said, I don't think CSS and DOM are inherently bad. They allow very powerful things indeed, as well as javascript does.


US Wary of Allowing Russian Electronic Monitoring Stations Inside US 232

Posted by samzenpus
from the not-in-my-backyard dept.
cold fjord writes "The New York Times reports, '... the next potential threat from Russia may not come from a nefarious cyberweapon or secrets gleaned from Snowden. Instead, this menace may come in the form of a ... dome-topped antenna perched atop an electronics-packed building surrounded by a security fence somewhere in the United States. ... the Central Intelligence Agency and the Pentagon have been quietly waging a campaign to stop the State Department from allowing ... the Russian space agency, to build about half a dozen ... monitor stations, on United States soil ... These monitor stations, the Russians contend, would significantly improve the accuracy and reliability of Moscow's version of the Global Positioning System ... The Russian effort is part of a larger global race by several countries ... to perfect their own global positioning systems and challenge the dominance of the American GPS. For the State Department, permitting Russia to build the stations would help mend the Obama administration's relationship with the government of President Vladimir V. Putin ... But the C.I.A. and other American spy agencies, as well as the Pentagon, suspect that the monitor stations would give the Russians a foothold on American territory that would sharpen the accuracy of Moscow's satellite-steered weapons. The stations, they believe, could also give the Russians an opening to snoop on the United States within its borders. ... administration officials have delayed a final decision until the Russians provide more information and until the American agencies sort out their differences.'"

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary saftey deserve neither liberty not saftey." -- Benjamin Franklin, 1759