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Comment: Re:Mac's don't get viruses. . . (Score 1) 164

by mean pun (#48028279) Attached to: Apple Fixes Shellshock In OS X

I'm sorry, but I can't get exited about two days to fix one vulnerability (Major Linux distributions) versus five days to fix most, if not all known vulnerabilities (Apple). The fix is there, and I'm glad they took the time to do some additional testing, especially because bash on Mac OS X is something that a large majority of users will not even run, and those that do will mostly only use it for their command line handling. Remote exploitation is just not possible with the default settings, so I don't care that Apple is a little slower.

Similarly, I am glad that there was a quick fix for my Debian box, because there the vulnerability was critical, and I have seen in the log files that people were trying to exploit it.

This neatly demonstrates that the statistics you mention are meaningless. The tradeoff between quick and solid is always there, and it is likely that Microsoft more often had to deal with bugs that required urgent fixes; they still have a lot of legacy to deal with.

In general, I don't see any signs that Apple is lax about security. They may be a little slow, but usually the fix is worth the wait, and they're also pretty good at avoiding problems in the first place.

Comment: Re:Question about how this works (Score 1) 236

by mean pun (#48002985) Attached to: First Shellshock Botnet Attacking Akamai, US DoD Networks

I disagree that using shell CGI scripts should be considered security hole any more than using CGI scripts written in any other language (snip)

Shells are notoriously difficult to use securely. So much so that for example suid is often not honoured on shell scripts. And that's because of the documented behaviour of the shells. The newly discovered bug in the Bourne shell makes it particularly easy to write an exploit, but even based on just the documented behaviour you're either a fool or a genius if you think you can write secure shell scripts.

It may be true that it is perfectly safe to cross the Niagara over a steel cable if you're trained well enough, but normal people are nevertheless advised to just use the bridge.

Comment: Obama declared a war on whistleblowers? (Score 2) 224

by mean pun (#47992089) Attached to: Where Whistleblowers End Up Working

"Obama and his attorney general, Eric Holder, declared a war on whistleblowers virtually as soon as they assumed office," says Kiriakou.

Obama is certainly not any better than his predecessors, but I have to wonder if he is any worse. Valery Plame was on G. W. Bush's watch, for example.

Comment: Re:The simple fact that we can't talk about this.. (Score 1) 207

by mean pun (#47981965) Attached to: Study Links Pacific Coastal Warming To Changing Winds

have a good career as a climate scientist.

But one has to be ordained as a climate scientist first. Not many of their seminaries are going to graduate non-believers.

If you have complaints about the way climate science is evaluated, you will have to be more specific than this. Abstract references to religious institutions are insufficiently clear to discuss and address such complaints.

Comment: Re:The simple fact that we can't talk about this.. (Score 1) 207

by mean pun (#47979169) Attached to: Study Links Pacific Coastal Warming To Changing Winds

The catch 22 is in order to be a climate scientest you have to basically sign on to beleiving in AGW, so it is a bit like saying 97% of Catholic preists believe in god.

There are plenty of people and institutes that are willing to fund research to disprove AGW, so someone with a sufficiently convincing theory could easily have a good career as a climate scientist. So what's the catch 22?

Comment: Re:Is there a single field that doesn't? (Score 2) 460

by mean pun (#47954735) Attached to: Science Has a Sexual Assault Problem

Unfortunately, some people have gotten it into their heads that they have a right to not feel awkard, and that feeling awkward makes them "violated". A clear abuse of the word, if I've ever seen any.

If a woman ask men kindly not to do some kinds of things because it makes her feel awkward (and it should be obvious even without asking), and if a man then does it anyway, the word `violated' seems pretty accurate to me. He's not interested in her comfort, he's just interested in is own jollies.

Comment: Re:Is there a single field that doesn't? (Score 2) 460

by mean pun (#47952971) Attached to: Science Has a Sexual Assault Problem

Hint, pressing your body up against an unwilling partner is unwanted sexual contact.

Greeting someone with a hug is not sexual contact, unwanted or otherwise.

No, and women will not interpret it as such, even if you misread a situation and give a hug when it was not expected. There is a big difference between a friendly hug and something sexually suggestive. Duration, for a start.

How the fuck is someone meant to know when you do and don't hug anyway.

It may be a social faux-pas, but trust me, it's equally fucking awkward when you have Aspergers and people actually expect a hug.

Yes, understanding when and when not to hug can be problematic if you don't always read the social signs properly. Similar with social kissing. I think most people have had awkward moments like this. There are huge differences between social groups anyway, so misreading the signs is not such a big deal, as long as you keep it friendly. And you can always err on the safe side.

Or are you telling me that all those women I know are actually making sexual overtures when they expect me to hug them?

No, of course not. What point are you trying to make?

So sorry but I give no fucking credibility to a study that treats greeting hugs as 'sexual assault'.

Is there any evidence that they do?

Comment: Re:Is this technically impossible - no. (Score 1) 191

by mean pun (#47921665) Attached to: Tim Cook Says Apple Can't Read Users' Emails, That iCloud Wasn't Hacked

Let's put it more simply. Aside from the one time pad, there is no publicly available encryption the NSA can't crack.

Although that might be the safest assumption to make, it is not at all clear that that is true. The standard algorithms and key sizes that are currently considered safe are certainly far too strong for brute-force attacks, even using massive and dedicated hardware, and they will remain so in the foreseeable future. It is always possible that there is a weakness in an algorithm, but there are no indications that there are, despite a lot of public scrutiny.

More directly: Edward Snowdon says that he trusts these algorithms.

Comment: Re:Not Hacked? (Score 1) 191

by mean pun (#47918999) Attached to: Tim Cook Says Apple Can't Read Users' Emails, That iCloud Wasn't Hacked

Right, it's not iCloud that was hacked, it was individual user accounts. It's the distinction between "the rotary club has been murdered" and "the members of the rotary club have been murdered".

No, some members of the rotary club have been murdered. (And also some members of the local droid knitting club.)

There is no indication that every iCloud account was hacked, or even that a disproportional number of iCloud accounts were hacked.

Comment: Re:Is this technically impossible - no. (Score 4, Informative) 191

by mean pun (#47918881) Attached to: Tim Cook Says Apple Can't Read Users' Emails, That iCloud Wasn't Hacked

For these people, with their resources, your "encryption", unless it's a one time pad, is no better than ROT13.

From the Snowdon leaks it looks like even the NSA cannot crack properly used strong encryption. That's why they try to harvest or weaken keys, try to get in before or after encryption, or use traffic (metadata) analysis.

If Machiavelli were a hacker, he'd have worked for the CSSG. -- Phil Lapsley

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