Slashdot stories can be listened to in audio form via an RSS feed, as read by our own robotic overlord.


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:Supreme Leader (Score 1) 167

by iluvcapra (#48640215) Attached to: Hackers Used Nasty "SMB Worm" Attack Toolkit Against Sony

They don't seriously think it was North Korea. Instead, there is an ulterior motive for blaming North Korea.

I'm totally receptive to the idea that it's not North Korea, but I gotta insist that any "skeptic" provide an alternative positive explanation.

I mean, like, what exactly makes you think "they don't seriously think it was North Korea"?

Comment: Re:Sure... (Score 2) 328

Sony is so inept I don't even get how they are allowed to do business. This is such a lack of security compliance for a for profit that I imagine compliance auditors are drooling by now.

I work at Sony Pictures on and off, ironically about two years ago the studio went through a huge ISO 27001 compliance audit, it was a huge deal at the time. I've worked at all the major Hollywood studios and I'd probably characterize Sony as having the best physical security. I didn't work in IT so I don't know all the ins and outs of the computer system but FWIW only the PCs on the lot were affected by the hack, all the Macs and unix-like machines are still running business-as-usual over there.

"Security compliance" obviously isn't going to be enough because widespread industry standards are woefully inadequate.

56 hacks in 12 years is not a company who understands technology. It's a company with about as much technical knowhow as the musical artists they represent.

That's if you count every company called "Sony." The movie studio, the music label, the games units, the different web and streaming sites, and the different electronics divisions are all basically different companies from an IT perspective (which is fortunate, considering how much damage this hack could have done if they WERE all just one IT establishment.) And this is just speaking of Sony America, which is the parent of Sony Picture Entertainment Group, Sony Music... Sony's a huge international conglomerate, you can't boil it down to some personification that's either stupid or smart.

Comment: Re:Sure... (Score 1) 328

Yes, a consequence of a fucked up health system where your workplace is involved in medical insurance at all - that's why Sony etc shoot a lot of films in Australia, Canada etc where they don't have those expenses from having to worry about employees health other than if they can turn up or not.

Um, just speaking as a habitual freelance Sony Pictures employee...

1) "Sony" doesn't shoot films, it contracts with production companies to distribute the films independent producers produce. People who actually go out and shoot movies are invariably employees of the production company, not the studio: everyone that worked on the production of The Amazing Spiderman was an employee of Laura Siskin Productions, not Sony Pictures Studios. People in post-production are often studio employees but they're freelancers who get their health benefits from...

2) Most of the people that actually work on movies are union, and the American film industry unions operate their own jointly-administtered HMO. The employers (the producers and studios) never have access to heath information.

3) I don't know anyone who handles explosives, but I've never heard of anyone ever getting a drug test on a crew. And I've worked wit pyro guys who I KNEW were perma-stoned.

Comment: Re:Land of the free (Score 1) 574

by iluvcapra (#48628567) Attached to: Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

The standard deal would be "6 against 6" or "8 against 8", the actor gets $6 million "against" 6% of the gross after distribution charges -- the $6 million is essentially an advance, so the producer only pays gross percentages when they're in excess of the original up-front fee. Net deals also happen and it also wouldn't be too strange for these guys to just not get an backend, but I would expect Rogen to get some because he's also the credited director.

(And I get that people have these really antagonistic ideas about Hollywood Accounting, but a lot of this is based on misconceptions of what exactly a writer is paid to do and most of what people know about "Hollywood Accouting" is a line that's promulgated by angry screenwriters and their lawyers. A rewrite guy can make $100k "punching-up" a screenplay, 4 weeks of work, so the fact that they don't get a share of the profits really doesn't trouble me.)

The numbers sound about right for Rogen and Franco -- the top of the line for someone like Tom Cruise is $15M/15%, and that's down from the historical peaks in the early aughts, when someone like Will Smith could demand $25M/25% and get it, because no Will Smith film to that time had made less that $200 million.

Comment: Re:Yup, Hegel 101 (Score 1) 574

by iluvcapra (#48628375) Attached to: Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

Especially after they pulled the movie.

Sony didn't have a choice, AMC, Regal and Carmike announced they were pulling the movie from US exhibition and it was beginning to look like the US release would only be a few dozen screens. A film like this has to release on over 2,500 screens in order to make its US targets. This way at least has the potential to maximize the VOD and DVD release.

Comment: Re: Move to a gated community (Score 1) 594

by iluvcapra (#48609899) Attached to: Waze Causing Anger Among LA Residents

Yes, they're presently adding three stops under downtown that will connect light rail lines in the city. This particular project is expected to take FIVE YEARS.

A subway line is also being extended down Wilshire Blvd. (the main drag between downtown and the ocean). It will eventually connect downtown to west LA and Beverly Hills, in 2023(!!). As it is the rail systems all join in downtown, and downtown just isn't where most destinations are, people come from outlying areas like Burbank and Manhattan Beach to go to jobs in West LA or Santa Monica, areas that are nominally urban but are in fact intensely developed residential areas where everyone has a $2m house and getting transit built is a huge political slog. NIMBYism is bad but if someone told you a light rail track near your house might cost you $400,000 in home equity you might not be crazy about it either.

Nobody seems to know what they're going to do in the 405 corridor, they've been adding lanes like crazy over the past 5 years but it does nothing. They could add a train but the problem with the 405 is that it connects two very dense areas over a mountain pass, and there's about 6 miles of nothing in between and it's not a natural spot for LRT. Even if they started today, they probably wouldn't finish for 15 years. LA can't pull a Robert Moses, all of the most desirable routes go through very wealthy areas that are politically organized and simply cannot be eminent domained.

Comment: Re: No More Ramen (Score 1) 201

by iluvcapra (#48547327) Attached to: James Watson's Nobel Medal Sells For $4.1 Million

He's particularly well-off considering his paying gig amounts to a sinecure.

I'm surprise the Nobel committee allows people to sell their medals. When people win Oscars, for example, the Academy won't let them keep their statue unless they sign an agreement giving the Academy a $1 buyback option on it. The statues all have a little plaque in the back saying, in so many words "this statue is bound by contract and cannot be sold without the written permission of the Academy."

Comment: Re: Yeah, well ... (Score 1) 201

by iluvcapra (#48547281) Attached to: James Watson's Nobel Medal Sells For $4.1 Million

The term "Irish race" is pretty well-attested in 19th and early 20th century Amercian usage, along with German Race and a bunch of others.

Race is culturally constructed, and the lines Americans draw with race are historically determined by either slavery and its legacy, or immigration. Skin color is a more important pretext to race now than it was in the past, because now most immigrants to the US aren't coming from Europe.

Comment: Re:Missing the Point (Score 1) 161

by iluvcapra (#48536629) Attached to: Why Apple, Google, and FB Have Their Own Programming Languages

The whole article is sortof an exercise in textual essentialism.

What does style tell us about what these things mean? It's a literary crit technique that might be applicable here, but he clearly either doesn't know what he's talking about or he's a dilettente who has absorbed the surface features of computer languages without groking the underlying concepts.

Comment: Re:Google engineers... (Score 3, Insightful) 239

by iluvcapra (#48519925) Attached to: Google Hopes To One Day Replace Gmail With Inbox

They fail to understand the purpose of e-mail, and as such we would never ever get the most basic and oldest of the e-mail client functions: folders.

Folders wouldn't work as well as tags for semantic data snarfing. Also it's one of those "competitive features" that they can rightly claim no other email client provides in the same way -- that it also totally effs up IMAP/POP folders and drags you to the web interface as much as possible is a bonus.

But they would go on "reinventing" e-mail forever, with colors, tabs, bars, circles, ovals, shapes, and probably in far future odors.

You can tell somebody at the Googleplex still smarting over the Wave debacle.

"No job too big; no fee too big!" -- Dr. Peter Venkman, "Ghost-busters"