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Comment Re:PREY (Score 1) 253

The point you are missing is that the laptop must be usable in it's freshly stolen form for software tracking to be of any use - or else why would someone leave it powered on.

And often the person who steals the laptop doesn't hold onto it... they flip it... often as a laptop they "forgot the password to, just go to a computer shop to have it reset"

Comment Re:PREY (Score 1) 253

Once a computer store came to me to reset a BIOS password on a laptop for one of their customers. I reset the password and noticed the windows installation was configured to join to a domain... so I reset the local account, recovered the outlook PST file and called the former user of the laptop. It was a corporate laptop that was stolen from his garage a week prior. The police came to my work and I was summoned to show up in court as a witness to a stupid possession of stolen property charge in another city. I had to take time off for it and everything.

That said, the "useless security" was enough to get the laptop to the point where a number of people who had the technical ability to do the right thing could...

Mind you, it was an inconvenience to me to do so.

Comment Re:It's all about thought control (Score 1) 122

Just FYI, the main law is being broken is that the VoIP providers are unlicensed telecommunications providers.

In order to be a licensed telecommunications provider, your company must meet certain ownership requirements and comply with government oversight.
Part of the government oversight is the tariffs charged. Part of the ownership requirements ensures profit for the country.

Since the infrastructure to provide the internet is subsidized by international minutes (remember where the content, and where Saudi is) VoIP in its most common form is used as rate/toll bypass telecommunications fraud. Same like reconfiguring someone's voice mail to forward to an international number.

There is no technical reason why VoIP can be cheaper than what the telecommunications providers can provide. They could provide VoIP too or terminate the call through TDMoIP, lower codec quality etc... but this is whole thing is not about the COST of the call. It's about the margins and ownership. The telecommunications companies employ thousands of Saudi nationals. The Saudi nationals do not care about VoIP. This mostly does not effect them, it effects the expatriates. And even then, it only effects the expatriates who came to Saudi on contracts that don't pay them enough to make phone calls.

Skype has been typically allowed to operate in many middle eastern countries but only for PC to PC video calling. Skype-in and Skype-out services as well as access to the website to download and market the client was typically blocked.

Yes, the NSA scandal probably has some impact on the recent re-evaluation of Skype.

Comment Maybe because... (Score 2) 165

A black market will exist as long as there is a reason for it. The more money that is siphoned out of our pockets by the swine of an unproductive industry, the further we will go to protect our interests. I'd love to believe Hollywood helped better our education system or somehow improved our standards of living... and maybe it is anti-american to believe it has taken more then it has given... yet I pay a hidden tax on all my blank media and generate add revenue for the american music lables on my youtube video that happened to catch an audio clip in the background. I spend more than a meal or hour of minimum wage on a single album or movie screening. Oh... and I'm NOT an American. I am Canadian.

Comment Re:Boosters go about it all wrong (Score 1) 245

Back in the day, you could get cars with car phones that worked with Bluetooth Sim Access Profile - those car phones had fixed antennas mounted outside so could broadcast up to 1 watt... but then came the iphone... since the iPhone was so trendy and hip (yet not supporting SAP or copy and paste) BMW/Mercedes stopped selling such equipped bluetooth car phones instead opting for the crappy reception of your crappy mobile located inside your metal box.

Comment Re:People driving the speed limit in the right lan (Score 1) 254

When one is an arrogant self-absorbed prick who thinks impeeding traffic is their personally-granted-god-given right, they cause other arrogant self-absorbed pricks to follow too close, pass improperly or try and "make up time" - so collectively all such pricks create the situation for all motorists...

Unlike the 60's (when the speed limits were set) - your car won't just explode when you cross 70mph.

Comment Re:Like 3D printers? (Score 1) 87

Never under-estimate the stupidity of consumers... I mean, we will probably end up with tassimo style 3d printers that you put in a pod of plastic and end up with forks/straws etc... not because it was a good idea or that tassimo machines make better/easier/cheaper coffees then a real espresso maker... but because consumers are stupid.

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