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Comment Embedded systems, low power PC's. (Score 1) 554 554

Sure the average is higher, but you can still buy new systems that are that small. Its good I can stuff them in a time (except drive space) VM's and do virtual desktops. Keeping it efficient gives us more to do. Now, if you wanted to have tune points that enable or disable features according to hardware you could make that case. But I do like that Win10 preview was the easiest OS install I've ever done.

Comment pfSense (Score 2) 187 187

I know you're new to the linux world, but while you're at it, dive into the BSD realm while you're at it.

You can do Firewalling with packet filter instead of iptables (better session tracking). BSD is generally better as a network appliance than linux for a number of reasons, and for firewalling especially. Better session tracking, better dynamic protocol handling, better error and flow control, and generally more robust. Iptables is powerful, but it has its downsides that can be felt these days with higher network speeds, IPv6, and dynamic network protocols which is why the linux kernel is moving away from it to NFTables. But NFTables is not yet complete, hence we circle back to BSD with its pf package.

pfSense offers exactly what you're looking for and probably more. It provides a gui and cli to manage the device and a robust user/support community. Beyond firewalling you can do proxy, captive portal, VPN, DNS, DHCP, NAT, IPS/IDS, and a whole lot more. It has a webGUI and sets up in all of about 10 minutes.

It packs all of the features you would see on "enterprise class" firewalls, just open source.

Comment Password Safe (Score 1) 445 445

Encrypts the file, has a portable exe for simple use, and wipes the password out of clipboard when the program is closed. You can set password complexity requirements on the random generation either for all passwords, a group of passwords, or a single password. Set password aging if you have to, and make notes on each password entry. I use it extensively and it is a great convenience.

Submission + - Is Wikipedia "accurate"? Not necessarily..... 1 1

metasonix writes: A new post on the Wikipediocracy website discusses the notorious, albeit now badly-dated, 2005 study published in Nature magazine claiming that Wikipedia content was almost as reliable as Encyclopedia Britannica in science topics. Despite not being a ringing endorsement of Wikipedia, the news media of 2005 tended to report it as such. This new article includes a long list of examples of Wikipedia content failures, including major paid-content abuses and some outright, highly-successful hoaxes. All were subsequent to the 2005 study, the bulk of them having occurred in the past year. And all occurred while Wikipedians continued to claim that Wikipedia just keeps "getting better and better". Perhaps Klee Irwin might have a different take on that?

Submission + - Netflix Is Building Deep Learning Neural Networks Hosted On Amazon Web Services

rjmarvin writes: Netflix is researching how deep learning artificial intelligence algorithms could improve the Netflix movie and TV recommendation engine. But unlike larger tech companies like Facebook and Google, Netflix is running its algorithms on Amazon Web Services, where it already hosts its streaming service, rather than building custom infrastructure. Netflix engineers explained how the neural networks work in a blog post, breaking down how they'll use GPUs running on AWS to build the deep learning computers, systems that mimic the structure and behavior of the human brain.

Comment Missing The Point (Score 3, Insightful) 49 49

I have a Thermaltake 5.25" drive bay cup-holder/cigarette lighter. How is it that there is more of a market demand for THAT than a braille printer? Or all of the other useless tech junk out there? I remember sitting next to a blind pastor on a flight. He was trying to use his laptop, but was having some difficulty because of a program error. We just haven't built these awesome "freedom machines" to be really utilized by anyone with handicaps. All the gaming keyboards, mice, and other gee-wiz devices have more of a market to flood with "mee-to" crap, yet not one real piece of assistance tech in all of MicroCenter or NewEgg? Really?

The real point, and what makes it interesting, is that is was a 12 year-old who built the thing from Lego's and spare junk. He saw a need, and went to fill it. Good on him, that is the point of these science fair projects, make kids think about the world around them and how to solve problems, even simple ones. Hopefully it sets an example as to how we should be thinking about the world; as a place filled with people who have needs and desires. With these types of kits making it into the homes of regular people, I look forward to the engineering boom that could come out of it. I say an arduino, pi, makerbot, and lego mindstorm for every kid. Let their imagination run wild.

Comment American Economic Imperialism (Score 1) 109 109

Why is everyone in such a rush to spend huge wads of money and violate privacy to protect American Copyright industry interests? When will the world stand up to the US?

Seems to me that simple proxy or encryption usage will prevent this anyways. Don't the Aussies have better things to spend money on, like sourcing more fresh water or expanding internet coverage? Seems priorities are screwy if they are willing to go through all of this effort. I guess the corruption knows no boarders.

Submission + - Personal Privacy Choices and Internet Usage for the Somewhat Cautious Geek 1 1

An anonymous reader writes: I've been meaning to update my browsing habits for the facebook/google/nsa era and was wondering what habits & practices I should adapt to minimize the spread of my personal info' online. I know it's not possible to completely browse anonymously — and certainly not if I'm using Gmail, Facebook et al — but I'd like to avoid my porn habits being linked to my online banking, or political research compiled with amazon orders. What's everyone's go to strategies? Different browsers for porn and online shopping? Particular browser extensions? Shrugging and not worrying?

Submission + - Putting the next generation of brains in danger->

An anonymous reader writes: The number of chemicals known to be toxic to children's developing brains has doubled over the last seven years, researchers said.

Dr. Philip Landrigan at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York and Dr. Philippe Grandjean from Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, authors of the review published Friday in The Lancet Neurology journal say the news is so troubling they are calling for a worldwide overhaul of the regulatory process in order to protect children's brains.

"We know from clinical information on poisoned adult patients that these chemicals can enter the brain through the blood brain barrier and cause neurological symptoms," said Grandjean.

"When this happens in children or during pregnancy, those chemicals are extremely toxic, because we now know that the developing brain is a uniquely vulnerable organ. Also, the effects are permanent."

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Submission + - South Korea Re-Routes Network Traffic due to Chinese Spying via Huawei->

An anonymous reader writes: US urges South Korea to move network traffic away from Chinese hardware, citing spying concerns
By Amar Toor on February 14, 2014

US urges South Korea to move network traffic away from Chinese hardware, citing spying concerns

Seoul quietly moves away from Huawei amid concerns of cyberespionage
The South Korean government has decided to route sensitive data away from networks operated by Huawei, amid longstanding fears from the US that the Chinese company's infrastructure could be used to spy on communications. As the Wall Street Journal reports, the US had been urging its South Korean allies to route government communications away from Huawei networks, claiming that the infrastructure could be used to spy on communications with American military bases there. As a result, Huawei equipment will not be used at any American military base in South Korea.

The Obama administration denies playing a role in the decision, and South Korean officials have not commented. The Journal reports that the White House made a point of keeping the talks private because it didn't want to be seen as meddling in its ally's business affairs.

White House denies influencing South Korea's decision

"While the United States has expressed concerns in the past, these decisions were made by the Republic of Korea and the Republic of Korea alone," State Department spokeswoman Jennifer Psaki told the Journal.

This week's report comes as US Secretary of State John Kerry kicked off a six-day tour of the region, where territorial disputes between China and its neighbors have raised diplomatic tensions. On Thursday, Kerry met with Chinese Fo reign Minister Wang Yi to discuss a wide range of issues, including cybersecurity and the North Korean nuclear program.

US officials have long been wary of Huawei's influence, with officials claiming that its equipment could be used for corporate or government espionage on behalf of China. Huawei has repeatedly denied the charges, though they appear to have had an impact on its business. Australia blocked the company from bidding on a major contract in 2012, citing security concerns, a year after US officials issued a similar denial. Last year, the company pulled out of the American networking market due to vaguely defined "geopolitical reasons."

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Feed Techdirt: Judge Finds St. Louis, MO's Red Light Camera Ordinance Invalid, Orders Halt Of T->

Another red light camera company is in trouble, this time in St. Louis, MO, where a judge has just invalidated the city's red light camera ordinance. American Traffic Solutions (whose legal issues we've detailed here previously) has just had its camera system kicked to the curb as a result of some questionable moves it made during a recent lawsuit.

A St. Louis judge issued an order Tuesday that invalidates the city's red-light camera ordinance.

Circuit Judge Steven Ohmer wrote in the order that the city is prohibited from attempting to enforce the ordinance, sending violation notices, processing payments or sending collection letters relating to the tickets.
So what prompted Ohmer to shut down the system? Well, the tickets that were central to the case, which were over a year old at the point of the suit's filing, were dismissed almost immediately after the lawsuit was filed. Why the sudden show of largesse?

Those named in the suit including the city, Mayor Francis Slay, Police Chief Sam Dotson and American Traffic Solutions Inc., which operates the cameras had argued to dismiss it. Some of the defendants said the claims were moot because the tickets had been dismissed and that the petitioners lacked standing because they were not hurt by the ordinance.
Ohmer didn't let this transparent attempt to dodge a legal battle go unnoticed.

"Here, it is clear that the City dismissed the Petitioners' tickets for the sole reason of avoiding an injunction in this matter, which the Court was poised to enter following the November hearing," he wrote.
Nearly every other claim made by the defendants was rebuffed by Judge Ohmer. The defendant's argued the plaintiffs had other venues to pursue their claims, like the municipal court, but a recent decision found that this court didn't provide adequate remedy for their claims. The defendants also argued the two filers didn't meet the requirements for a class action lawsuit. Judge Ohmer pointed out that the pair satisfied the "class action" stipulations because the ordinance affected other citizens.

The key element found to be in violation of state law is the fact that ATS' cameras (like all traffic enforcement cameras) presume the registered owner of the vehicle is the driver. This common aspect becomes even more problematic when the ticketed person has very limited avenues for recourse, which also unfortunately tends to be the case with automated enforcement. (This is also one of several problems with the recently introduced legislation that would allow Oklahoma police officers to issue traffic citations without leaving their vehicles.)

This combination of factors has led some traffic camera companies to basically convert their enforcement systems into purely voluntary operations. As the article notes, another Missouri city's council members recently voted unanimously to not enforce red light camera tickets. The camera system will be allowed to keep running and issuing citations but the city and the red light camera company won't pursue those who ignore tickets and will erase fines for anyone who contests their citation. Feeling safer yet, drivers?

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Submission + - DIY NSA Hardware Implant->

Fryan writes: The InfoSec Institute recreated a hardware device that has the same capability as BULLDOZER using off the shelf hardware. This is a PCI hardware implant that houses software malware that infects the target computer, as well as a provides an airgap communication workaround. It communicates over RF, so if the target computer is on a network not connected to the internet, an NSA operator can wirelessly pull data from the target computer. The computer could also attack other devices on the airgappped protected network, as well as monitor communications. The widely available and low cost Sundance SMT8096 card is used to replicate this capability and DIY directions are provided.
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Comment Re:graduate certificates (Score 1) 149 149

While true, they are limited in usefulness. The real point is that continuing education is not even really a focus of current colleges. Besides which, many graduate certificates carries their own "not really required" requirements and precludes community colleges, what most of us could actually afford out-of-pocket.

Comment Industry Problem (Score 5, Insightful) 149 149

Background: I am an adjunct instructor and an IT professional. As such, this is a common discussion topic.

The education industry, meaning colleges and universities, need a way to "add on" additional skill emphasis to degrees without requiring whole new degrees. I think, instead of detracting from current products (associates, bachelors, masters degrees), this will add revenue abilities from lifetime learning requirements that tech people have.

For Example: BSCS, Purdue University, 1990
CS Advanced Programming Topics, Coursera, 2013.

This would allow people to add the 2-3 courses that they need to refresh their skills, get students into the halls paying tuition (out of pocket, or company money), allow current students to brush up and work with more experienced folks IN CLASS, and show what HR is looking for, current accredited skills improvement.

But we seem stuck in the past. So we have to suffer through $1,000 a day "boot camps" that still require you to do a lot of on-your-own learning. We NEED something better. Colleges, be they 4 year or community, need to have programs that carry through the whole career ladder for skills improvement. I think that will help all of us overcome the "no training dollars this year" dilemma we constantly find.

Submission + - The Tale of How an NVIDIA Engineer's Cube Became His Castle->

jones_supa writes: Jonathon Evans — who leads the team that designs the host interface and context scheduling unit for NVIDIA GPUs — decided to play a prank on one of his colleagues, Alan Kaatz, while he was away. So, he wrapped Alan’s computer, keyboard and many of the objects in his cube in cellophane. Alan, a quick-witted engineer with a keen sense of the absurd, decided to hit back — hard. 'I wanted to do something so big that it would be impossible to retaliate,' Alan says. So Alan and a small group of other GPU designers — Eric Tyson, Steve Mueller and Rafal Zboinski — huddled around a whiteboard to sketch out what revenge might look like. They would turn Jonathon’s cube into a castle. For the project King's Quest they would need high-quality cardboard and about 200 hours. The result is quite monumental and unequaled office prank.
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There are worse things in life than death. Have you ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman? -- Woody Allen