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Comment: Re:Bad business practice (Score 1) 133

by khellendros1984 (#47786037) Attached to: Australian Consumer Watchdog Takes Valve To Court
I think it's convenient, for my case. If I'm on my Linux machine but I'm looking at Steam's page, I'm most likely trying to buy games for my Windows machine (or one that I've read runs well under Wine). The search box ought to have an "only for my platform" checkbox/dropdown, and maybe it should warn you prior to purchase if your browser's user-agent indicates that there's a platform mismatch, but I'd much prefer being shown everything available.

Comment: Re:G'Day Valve, (Score 1) 133

by khellendros1984 (#47785539) Attached to: Australian Consumer Watchdog Takes Valve To Court
In college, my grandparents provided a computer, parents provided a cell phone and my food and lodging. I didn't smoke (most people don't, here) and didn't drink. That, plus no car and only occasional employment? You better believe that I pirated a fair amount of stuff while almost fooling myself that I was justified for doing it. My family wasn't impoverished, but legal additions to my game catalog were limited to a couple times per year, and the in-dorm network share starts looking mighty appealing when your roommates invite you to play a game you don't own.

Comment: Re:Watermarks? (Score 1) 126

by khellendros1984 (#47766883) Attached to: GOG Introduces DRM-Free Movie Store
That should be easy to test; sha1sum a bunch of the installers, and compare the results to someone else's list. I've got some DOS games, both on the original CD and via GOG; the game files themselves weren't modified in those cases, so any watermark would have to be contained elsewhere, in the GOG-provided files (which aren't strictly necessary to run the games, if you provide your own DosBox and configuration).

Comment: Re:Not worth it (Score 1) 251

by khellendros1984 (#47758657) Attached to: New Windows Coming In Late September -- But Which One?
The last Windows PC I bought didn't come with any crapware installed (other than Windows itself), just the OS and the device drivers necessary to support the hardware. "Fact is" if you're willing to do your research beforehand and maybe buy from a less well-known vendor, you don't necessarily have to deal with bloat.

Comment: Re:What's so American (Score 1) 525

The ISP has customers paying for bandwidth, and those customers have decided to stream video. That's data that the customer has already paid for. If the ISP sold bandwidth to their customers, and the network is congested because the ISP can't provide the level of service that it sold, then why should it get rewarded by charging for the same data twice, rather than punished for false advertising?

Comment: Re:The real crime here (Score 1) 461

by khellendros1984 (#47731461) Attached to: 33 Months In Prison For Recording a Movie In a Theater
It seems like your argument is that a government doesn't have any authority over banks or employers. Both of those are licensed by the government (in most places). If the bank doesn't comply, their license can be suspended, and they won't be able to do things like hold deposits for their customers. If a business' license is suspended, they won't be permitted to operate in that jurisdiction. If they continue to do so anyhow, the government will shut them down by force.

The employer has more to lose than the employee; they'll garnish the employee's wages or risk being shut down. The bank is in the same situation.

Now, if the offender doesn't have a job, bank accounts, or other financial assets that could be seized to pay off the fine, then some alternative method of punishment could apply. Governments are experts in applying various kinds of force effectively, and they generally don't like getting "no" as their answer.

Comment: Re:Incorrect assumption (Score 1) 299

What I was imagining was that the phone gets shipped with a manufacturer-signed and device-specific bootloader, and the first time the key is written (by the end-user of the device), the firmware encrypts the entire contents of the storage, including the bootloader.

Write a known key? OK, the bootloader is illegible, and you can't replace it because you don't have the manufacturer's signing key. Verification key is burnt into the silicon so you can't replace that. Analyze the signal coming out of the decryption chip? Maybe the crypto, storage, and SoC are sealed in epoxy.

The manufacturer could send out a phone where they already set the key (as well as signing the bootloader), but why would an informed customer buy that?

Comment: Re:Incorrect assumption (Score 1) 299

If you can initially set the key, then the key is capable of being reset or even read.

Unless it's stored in memory that the user is only given write-only access to, and the only thing that can read it is the chip it got burned in to (and which provides black-box encryption/decryption). It's technically readable, if you wish to de-cap the chip an analyze it.

Comment: Too many (Score 1) 260

by khellendros1984 (#47716179) Attached to: How many devices are connected to your home Wi-Fi?
Most days, there are 4-5 devices connected, but if I had everything turned on with a WEP 802.11b connection (for compatibility with older devices), I'd have: 4 laptops, 2 tablets, 5 smartphones, 2 iPods, 5 portable game systems, 1 of the DVR boxes, 2 media streamers, and 4 video game consoles. There's some more connected to the gigabit network. On the average day, my wife and I each have a cell phone and a laptop turned on, and the wireless is secured so that half of those devices can't talk to it anyhow.

Comment: Re:Living in the country is an anachronism (Score 1) 276

by khellendros1984 (#47715207) Attached to: Helsinki Aims To Obviate Private Cars
Personally, I don't like having that many people around me. I enjoy live bands, but I'd prefer them to be far enough away that I specifically have to seek them out. Having the optional opportunity to be around other people is great; feeling close enough that you can't completely get away is just stifling.

Where I am now feels near-optimal. There's enough around that I can get to restaurants and stores without much effort, LA is about an hour and a half away, so the more big-city attractions are reachable if I want them, and it's not like I'm living in the absolute middle of nowhere. For me, it's a kind of middle ground, with a lot of the benefits of city living without the things that would make it unlivable for me. I don't want to live on a farm, but I don't want to live surrounded by humanity either.

Comment: Re:Windows 8 app store? (Score 1) 188

by khellendros1984 (#47699139) Attached to: Microsoft's Windows 8 App Store Is Full of Scamware

Lets face it ARM only has 2 things going for it

I think you missed a third point. They sip power, compared to x86 chips. Well, that, and apparently recent ARMs compare favorably against low-end Intel chips.

And anyhow, I've got a PC from circa 1998 that I use to run some older software, and I wouldn't expect much argument that that's a general purpose computer, even though my last 2 phones far outclass its performance in every measurable way. Performance level doesn't have much to do with whether something's a real computer or not.

We can predict everything, except the future.

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