Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:bye (Score 1) 487

by nmb3000 (#49751333) Attached to: Ads Based On Browsing History Are Coming To All Firefox Users

Chrome starts up for me a lot faster than Firefox and runs much smoother.

That's funny, because it's the opposite for me. Chrome starts slow, and feels so clunky. Every now and then it pauses for several seconds, and if I minimize the window it takes 5-10 seconds before it's responsive again (I assume the 20-processes of memory are paged out or something).

Plus Chrome uses html5 playback on Youtube

Firefox does too, by default now, but I don't see why everyone fawns over HTML5 video. It's just a damned webm/H.264 video stream, and we had <embed>'d videos way back when.

Comment: Re: bye (Score 1) 487

by nmb3000 (#49751241) Attached to: Ads Based On Browsing History Are Coming To All Firefox Users

I'm not one for conspiracy theories, but in this case I have to ask, is there a clandestine effort underway to utterly destroy Firefox, and maybe even Mozilla, from the inside?

It's like every decision made over the past several years has been designed to alienate Firefox's remaining users, without bringing in any new users.

Hanlon's razor says

Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Of course that doesn't mean malice and stupidity can't walk hand-in-hand, and I'm pretty sure that's what's happening at Mozilla. I wouldn't be surprised at all if there were a few bad actors, but there are dozens more that simply suffer from stupidity and lack of foresight. Every "ux expert" and "architect" seems to think they're god's own gift to mankind, and Mozilla is packed to the brim with those. Combine them with some ivory towers and you can pretty easily explain the current sad state of affairs.

I've loved Firefox since it was Firebird and it kills me to see it painfully dying from this cancer. My only hope is that we'll be left with a fork of some kind that continues from somewhere before it went completely off the rails. All such a fork needs is a little momentum behind it and some pragmatic people at the reins and it could be great.


Ads Based On Browsing History Are Coming To All Firefox Users 487

Posted by Soulskill
from the just-what-you-wanted dept.
An anonymous reader writes: Mozilla has announced plans to launch a feature called "Suggested Tiles," which will provide sponsored recommendations to visit certain websites when other websites show up in the user's new tab page. The tiles will begin to show up for beta channel users next week, and the company is asking for feedback. For testing purposes, users will only see Suggested Tiles "promoting Firefox for Android, Firefox Marketplace, and other Mozilla causes." It's not yet known what websites will show up on the tiles when the feature launches later this summer. The company says, "With Suggested Tiles, we want to show the world that it is possible to do relevant advertising and content recommendations while still respecting users’ privacy and giving them control over their data."

Comment: Re:Not sure if smart or retarded (Score 1) 204

Selling your character would also be banned.

It's true that Blizzard doesn't want you selling your characters, but it happens nonetheless. This was especially true around the time he's talking about, before Battle.net accounts were a thing and it was fairly simple to merge WoW accounts, but it's still possible today. I have a friend who started playing in 2004 and he sold his account for about $4,000 right before starting college in mid-2006.

Comment: Re:Not sure if smart or retarded (Score 5, Informative) 204

That's a lot of revenue per month Blizzard has chosen not to receive.

Well, there are two points to consider about this:

1) The ban was not permanent, but was only six months. This is a departure from their previous botting bans and will put expiration near the end of the year, which lines up with a potential patch / expansion release.

2) As others have mentioned, getting banned does not prevent you from creating a new account and buying the game again. That's an instant ~$70 for Blizzard, equivalent to a player subscribing for about 4.5 months.

3) Botting had gotten very bad in some places. A lot of customers were complaining about them turning a blind eye to it and they really needed to do something.

Finally, the primary botting software that was targeted was HonorBuddy which is mostly used for player-vs-player activities. Given how much people have complained about the current state of PvP it's not surprising they went after it in an attempt to improve things. As a bonus, the developer of HonorBuddy has said he will be discontinuing development of the software due to the ban wave.


Scientists Discover First Warm-Blooded Fish 33

Posted by samzenpus
from the keeping-it-warm dept.
sciencehabit writes: The opah lives in the dark, chilly depths of the world's oceans, using heated blood to keep warm. It's the first fish found to be fully warm-blooded. Certain sharks and tuna can warm regions of their body such as swimming muscles and the brain but must return to the surface to protect vital organs from the effects of the cold. The opah on the other hand, generates heat from its pectoral muscles, and conserves that warmth thanks to body fat and the special structure of its gills. “It’s a remarkable adaptation for a fish,” says Diego Bernal, a fish physiologist at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth.

Mobile Spy Software Maker MSpy Hacked, Customer Data Leaked 79

Posted by samzenpus
from the have-some-information dept.
pdclarry writes: mSpy sells a software-as-a-service package that claims to allow you to spy on iPhones. It is used by ~2 million people to spy on their children, partners, Exes, etc. The information gleaned is stored on mSpy's servers. Brian Krebs reports that mSpy has been hacked and their entire database of several hundred GB of their customer's data has been posted on the Dark Web. The trove includes Apple IDs and passwords, as well as the complete contents of phones that have mSpy installed. So much for keeping your children safe.

Comment: Re:Simple (Score 1) 156

by nmb3000 (#49633523) Attached to: NASA Will Award You $5,000 For Your Finest Mars City Idea

Build an underground shelter, with sufficient supplies to last until the dust settles. Much cheaper, and much higher chance of survival.

This is a good plan. Nuclear reactors could provide power almost indefinitely. Greenhouses could maintain plantlife. Animals could be bred and slaughtered. Selecting survivors need not be difficult -- a computer could be set and programmed to accept factors from youth, health, sexual fertility, intelligence, and a cross section of necessary skills.

Naturally, they would breed prodigiously; there would be much time, and little to do. And, with the proper breeding techniques and a ratio of say, ten females to each male, society could be rebuilt. Though since each man will be required to do prodigious... service along these lines, the women will have to be selected for their sexual characteristics which will have to be of a highly stimulating nature.

Mein Fuhrer, we should start planning at once!

Comment: No, they are categorically NOT doing that... (Score -1) 164

by daveschroeder (#49622049) Attached to: How the NSA Converts Spoken Words Into Searchable Text

...and your comment represents the absolutely fundamental misunderstanding that pervades this discussion.

The truth no one wants to hear:

The distinction is no longer the technology or the place, but the person(s) using a capability: the target. In a free society based on the rule of law, it is not the technological capability to do a thing, but the law, that is paramount.

Gone are the days where the US targeted foreign communications on distant shores, or cracked codes used only by our enemies. No one would have questioned the legitimacy of the US and its allies breaking the German or Japanese codes or exploiting enemy communications equipment during WWII. The difference today is that US adversaries -- from terrorists to nation-states -- use many of the same systems, services, networks, operating systems, devices, software, hardware, cloud services, encryption standards, and so on, as Americans and much of the rest of the world. They use iPhones, Windows, Dell servers, Android tablets, Cisco routers, Netgear wireless access points, Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp, Gmail, and so on.

US adversaries now often use the very same technologies we use. The fact that Americans or others also use them does not suddenly or magically mean that no element of the US Intelligence Community should ever target them. When a terrorist in Somalia is using Hotmail or an iPhone instead of a walkie-talkie, that cannot mean we pack our bags and go home. That means that, within clear and specific legal authorities and duly authorized statutory missions of the Intelligence Community, we aggressively pursue any and all possible avenues, within the law, that allow us to intercept and exploit the communications of foreign intelligence targets.

If they are using hand couriers, we target them. If they are using walkie-talkies, we target them. If they are using their own custom methods for protecting their communications, we target them. If they are using HF radios, VSATs, satellite phones, or smoke signals, we target them. If they are using Gmail, Windows, OS X, Facebook, iPhone, Android, SSL, web forums running on Amazon Web Services, etc., we target them -- within clear and specific legal frameworks that govern the way our intelligence agencies operate, including with regard to US Persons.

That doesn't mean it's always perfect; that doesn't mean things are not up for debate; that doesn't mean everyone will agree with every possible legal interpretation; that doesn't mean that some may not fundamentally disagree with the US approach to, e.g., counterterrorism. But the intelligence agencies do not make the rules, and while they may inform issues, they do not define national policy or priorities.

Without the authorities granted by the FISA Amendments Act of 2008 (FAA), the United States cannot target non-US Persons who are foreign intelligence targets if their communications enters, traverses, or otherwise touches the United States, a system within the United States, or, arguably, a system or network operated by a US corporation (i.e., a US Person) anywhere in the world. FAA in particular is almost exclusively focused on non-US Persons outside the US, who now exist in the same global web of digital communications as innocent Americans.

Without FAA, the very same Constitutional protections and warrant requirements reserved for US Persons would extend to foreign nations and foreign terrorists simply by using US networks and services â" whether intentionally or not. Without FAA, an individualized warrant would be required to collect on a foreign intelligence target using, say, Facebook, Gmail, or Yahoo!, or even exclusively foreign providers if their communications happens to enter the United States, as 70% of international internet traffic does. If you do not think there is a problem with this, there might be an even greater and more basic misunderstanding about how foreign SIGINT and cyber activities fundamentally must work.

If you believe NSA should not have these capabilities, what you are saying is that you do not believe the United States should be able to target foreign intelligence targets outside the United States who, by coincidence or by design, ever utilize or enter US systems and services. If you believe the solution is an individualized warrant every time the US wishes to target a foreign adversary using Gmail, then you are advocating the protection of foreign adversaries with the very same legal protections reserved for US citizens -- while turning foreign SIGINT, which is not and never has been subject to those restrictions, on its head.

These are the facts and realities of the situation. Any government capability is imperfect, and any government capability can be abused. But the United States is the only nation on earth which has jammed intelligence capabilities into as sophisticated and extensive a legal framework as we have. When the intelligence committees of both houses of Congress, multiple executive agencies under two diametrically opposite Presidential administrations, armies of lawyers within offices of general counsel and and inspectors general, and federal judges on the very court whose only purpose is to protect the rights of Americans under the law and the Constitution in the context of foreign intelligence collection are all in agreement, then you have the judgment of every mechanism of our free civil society.

Or we could just keep laying our intelligence sources, methods, techniques, and capabilities bare to our enemies.

âMany forms of Government have been tried and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time." - Winston Churchill (1874-1965), Speech in the House of Commons, November 11, 1947

"The necessity of procuring good Intelligence is apparent and need not be further urged â" all that remains for me to add, is, that you keep the whole matter as secret as possible. For upon Secrecy, Success depends in most Enterprises of the kind, and for want of it, they are generally defeated, however well planned and promising a favourable issue.â â" George Washington, our nation's first spymaster, in a letter to Colonel Elias Dayton, 26 July 1777

Comment: Re:Yet that's what they are doing (Score 1) 1097

by nmb3000 (#49612935) Attached to: Two Gunman Killed Outside "Draw the Prophet" Event In Texas

deliberate trolling is definitely what is going on

Of course it was, and the group that organized the event didn't try to hide it. Of course, what you call "trolling" they call "exercising First Amendment freedoms". Po-tay-to, po-tah-to.

It looks like it's counterproductive and just adds more fuel to those who want to recruit more radicals. "See this thing in Texas kids, it means all of America hates us - so sign up now to teach them what we taught the Russians in Afganistan"

So where do you draw the line? Unless you convert to Islam and sign up for one of their terror camps they'll always have some excuse to point at you and say "He's different! He should be killed!" I suggest reading about the paradox of intolerance. I particularly like Karl Popper's standpoint:

"Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance. If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them."

There is no "right to not be offended" in the US. Saying we should avoid "throwing fuel on the fire" doesn't address who started the fire in the first place, or how to put it out. No progress will be made by acquiescing to their demands and standing firmly against these kinds of ideas and the people that hold them is the only way to -- slowly -- eradicate them.

Comment: Re:Good (Score 5, Insightful) 126

by nmb3000 (#49597873) Attached to: Judge Tosses United Airlines Lawsuit Over 'Hidden City' Tickets

Nobody should be required to buy into loss leaders or other pricing schemes like this.

And now they're taking a page out of the BSA's lawyer playbook with this "lost revenue" crap. Just because someone could have bought a $500 ticket from NY to SLC doesn't mean that $100 was stolen from United because they bought a $400 ticket that was NY to LA with a layover in SLC.

And then there's airline pricing in general. I always have a hard time feeling sorry for the airlines, but when the price of oil (the biggest expense for them) dropped like a rock end of last year, did the airlines lower ticket prices or remove fuel surcharges? Nope.

Big companies like airlines have used obscure and convoluted pricing schemes for decades as a way to screw over the average customer. Seeing them get thrown back into their faces isn't illegal -- it's a sweet dose of justice.

You can fool all the people all of the time if the advertising is right and the budget is big enough. -- Joseph E. Levine