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Comment: Very clever (Score 4, Interesting) 66

Reminds me a little of some work done by Terje Mathisen, an expert assembly language programmer. Not exactly that same as the exploit, but probably interesting to a few slashdotters. I'll let him describe it:

"The most complicated code I have ever written is/was a piece of executable text, in order to be able to send binary data over very early text-only email systems:

"Minimum possible amount of self-modification (a single two-byte backwards branch), a first-level bootstrap that fits in two 64-byte lines including a Copyright notice and which survives the most common forms of reformatting, including replacing the CRLF line terminator by any zero, one or two byte sequence. This piece of code picks up the next few lines, combining pairs of characters into arbitrary byte values before flushing the prefetch cache by branching into the newly decoded second-level bootstrap. (Everything uses only the ~70 different ascii codes which are blessed by the MIME standard as never requiring encoding or escape sequences.)

"This second level consists of a _very_ compact BASE64 decode which takes the remainder of the input and re-generates the original binary which it can either execute in place or write to disk.


California Property Tax Exemptions For Solar Energy Systems Extended To 2025 76

Posted by timothy
from the special-favors-if-you-can-get-'em dept.
New submitter DaveSmith1982 writes with word from PV Tech that A property tax exemption for solar power systems in California has been extended to 2025, following the passing of a bill as part of the annual state budget. Senate Bill 871 (SB871) was approved during the signing of the budget by governor Jerry Brown, which took place last week. The wording of SB871 extends the period during which property taxes will not be applied to "active solar energy systems," which includes PV and solar water heaters.

What's Your STEM Degree Worth? 148

Posted by samzenpus
from the doing-the-math dept.
Jim_Austin writes A recent study by economist Douglas Webber calculates the lifetime earnings premium of college degrees in various broad areas, accounting for selection bias--that is, for the fact that people who already are likely to do well are also more likely to go to college. These premiums are not small. Science Careers got exclusive access to major-specific data, and published an article that tells how much more you can expect to earn because you got that college degree--for engineering, physics, computer science, chemistry, and biology majors.

Comment: Re:Administrators (Score 2) 538

by mc6809e (#47290203) Attached to: Teaching College Is No Longer a Middle Class Job

In all aspects of education, from primary school to university, the growing swarms of administrators soak up the budget. In some school systems, they vastly outnumber the actual teachers, have better pay, and yet contribute nothing to the operation of the schools.

Don't forget those in the construction industry. Like administrators, they contribute where it counts: in the voting booth where they help elect those that will continue to increase spending on that abstraction "education" rather than on actual educators.

Comment: Re:For a sense of scale (Score 4, Informative) 142

by mc6809e (#47283349) Attached to: Will 7nm and 5nm CPU Process Tech Really Happen?

There are other advantages to shrinking components. Higher clock rates become possible.

You'd think so, but the problem is global interconnect. Not gates. It was all the way back at the 250nm node when interconnect and gate delay were about the same.

At the 28nm node, wire delay is responsible for something like 80% of the time it takes for signals to work their way through a circuit.

And it some cases inverters are actually used to help signals propagate more quickly down long wires. In other words, long wires are so slow compared to gates that adding gates can speed things up!

Comment: Re:some level of fraud or deception (Score 1) 85

by mc6809e (#47266895) Attached to: Wireless Industry Lobbying Hard to Keep Net Neutrality Out

I believe many ISPs are actively sabotaging customer's connections to some of the internet's content

They don't have to. The protocols we use are more than capable of screwing with things.

Consider TCP: the protocol is BY DESIGN meant to exponentially increase the amount of data dumped on a link until it overloads and begins dropping packets. TCP then throttles for a little while and then soon goes back to bashing the network with packets until it breaks again.

Comment: Don't worry--the crime rate is sure to go up again (Score 1) 875

by mc6809e (#47200321) Attached to: America 'Has Become a War Zone'

Well, maybe.

Many of the worst and violent crimes are committed by men age 16-24.

Now look at this.

Notice that nice peak in the crime rate around 1992? Many of those crimes were committed by people born in the 60s -- a turbulent, uncertain time, and the 70s -- a rotten decade with a corrupt or weak presidents, increasing unemployment, inflation, and plenty of other rottenness.

I don't think it's too much of a stretch to believe that that sort of environment helps turn some children into violent criminals.

We have in some ways similar situation today. While some groups seem to be enjoying the recovery (baby-boomers, especially) many others are struggling. Young people -- those forming families right now -- have been left behind.

And I expect children being born into that world are having a tough time -- and in 16-24 years, we'll start to see the consequences.

Comment: But it gives the driver the wrong impression (Score 4, Insightful) 243

by mc6809e (#47190983) Attached to: New Car Can Lean Into Curves, Literally

Drivers depend on feedback from the car to help them make necessary adjustments.

If a curve isn't banked enough, the car shouldn't fool the driver into thinking that it is banked enough.

That feeling one gets when the car leans towards the outside of the curve is telling the driver to slow down!

Comment: Re:Eric Burger asks, how did it come to this? (Score 1, Insightful) 250

by mc6809e (#47040705) Attached to: As NASA Seeks Next Mission, Russia Holds the Trump Card

And that little fact is almost entirely due to Congress' inability to think past pork and the next re election cycle.

So much of the budget is off-limits (social security and medicare) that the only areas left vulnerable to cutting are things like NASA.

The USA has locked itself into forced spending in some areas and it's squeezing other areas.

Comment: Re:AT&T land line (Score 1) 286

by mc6809e (#47022783) Attached to: Cable TV Prices Rising At Four Times the Inflation Rate

You probably live in a big city with actual choices. In my small town, I have ONE CHOICE for cable TV, and ONE CHOICE for internet, unless you count satellite or wireless options.

And why shouldn't we count satellite and wireless?

I use Fios for internet, TheDish for TV, and I have a cell phone tether plan when I want to use my laptop on the road.

I agree that satellite internet access is probably a mistake unless you have no choice, but a 4G access point or tethered cell phone is really impressive for something that's wireless.

I routinely got 10Mbps and sub 100ms ping times while staying on a horse farm in the middle of no where.

Explore your options and force providers to compete.

Comment: Re:inevitable (Score 2) 286

by mc6809e (#47022705) Attached to: Cable TV Prices Rising At Four Times the Inflation Rate

Capitalism and the markets demand exponential growth in a finite world,

No they don't. They're just somewhat efficient collective resource allocation systems.

Exponential growth appears to be a requirement because populations grow exponentially.

If an economy can't keep up with the exponential growth of population, then there is less produced per person.

Not only is UNIX dead, it's starting to smell really bad. -- Rob Pike