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Comment: Re:Shop elsewhere... (Score 2) 68

by TheRaven64 (#48685315) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Dealing With Companies With Poor SSL Practices?
Depending on your locale, the purchase might be covered by distance selling regulations. In the UK, you have a few days in which you can cancel the order for any reason. Cancel the order citing their poor security practices as the reason, keep a copy of any correspondence, and forward it to your credit card company if they try to charge you anything.

Comment: Re:Do Not Track never meant anything (Score 1) 125

by TheRaven64 (#48683815) Attached to: Google and Apple Weaseling Out of "Do Not Track"

If you can agree to contractual terms by clicking through some agreement, you can agree to "waive" your DNT setting

In the US and UK, the requirement for a contract to be enforceable in court is that the side wishing to enforce it must demonstrate that a meeting of minds has occurred. It's far from a binary decision. Some things, such as witnessed signatures at the bottom with each page initialed, have large amounts of case law backing them up, so you need a very strong argument if you want to discount them. For click-through licenses, there's a lot less case law and everything on the opposing side helps. If you can demonstrate that you have actively opted out of tracking and then been presented with a click-through license that, buried somewhere in legalese, there is a permission to track, it's easier to argue that the contract is invalid.

Either way, I am not sure what court is going to protect you from malicious actors that would not follow DNT.

The various European data protection offices would be a good bet.

We should be working on stopping the ability to track, not about making statements of intent for possible future litigation in a court of law.

Making it impossible to track means making clients indistinguishable, which is very hard. Making tracking without consent illegal is much easier, because the companies that you really worry about doing the tracking are the ones with large and expensive data centres where they can process the data, and these are nice big targets.

Comment: Re:Bombs in the US? (Score 1) 255

by TheRaven64 (#48683635) Attached to: The Interview Bombs In US, Kills In China, Threatens N. Korea
It's not the Cold War anymore. You don't have to pretend that any country that you don't like is communist. The hereditary dictatorship in North Korea is about as far as you can get from communism and stopped pretending to be communist some time ago. It still claims to be democratic though, so if you're going to object to political philosophies based on the buzzwords that dictators use, you should probably be complaining about democracy, not communism...

Comment: Re:Great (Score 1) 41

by TheRaven64 (#48683621) Attached to: Phoronix Lauds AMD's Open Source Radeon Driver Progress For 2014

No. The nVidia drivers share around 90% of their code between all platforms (Windows, Linux, FreeBSD, Solaris) and the open source ones all use the Gallium framework, which is designed for portability from the ground up.

Modern GPU drivers require a set of services from the kernel, mostly related to memory management. They need to be able to get access to the device's I/O range in the physical address map and they need the kernel to grant access to texture memory in both main memory and the device. That's about all that they need from the kernel.

At the top, they need a state tracker that manages 3D API state (which is fairly minimal on modern APIs, as they aim to be stateless for performance reasons) and that translates the shader programs into some intermediate representation.

The majority of the device-specific driver code lives between these two layers, which are usually handled by abstraction layers so that they can be plugged into different APIs. You use the same Gallium driver with an OpenGL 2, OpenGL 3, OpenVG or Direct3D state tracker.

Comment: Re:People Are Such Babies (Score 1, Interesting) 198

by TheRaven64 (#48683603) Attached to: Facebook Apologizes For 'Year In Review' Photos

The only person who should be curating personal photos in Facebook is the profile owner.

You mean the person who clicked through the ToS that grant Facebook a perpetual, commercial, sublicenceable, license to use the photos however they wish? Including (as they've done in the last) licensing them to third parties to use in adverts?

Comment: Re:Do Not Track never meant anything (Score 1) 125

by TheRaven64 (#48683591) Attached to: Google and Apple Weaseling Out of "Do Not Track"
The purpose of DNT was to demonstrate, in a measurable way, that people did not wish to be tracked. It was not intended as an enforcement mechanism, but as a statement of intent. It makes it very hard to argue in court that your click-through ToS permits tracking (or constitutes a meeting of minds at all), when the user has explicitly requested not to be tracked.

Comment: Re:I automatically disbelieved this post (Score 1) 125

by TheRaven64 (#48683589) Attached to: Google and Apple Weaseling Out of "Do Not Track"
It depends a lot on the category of goods. Amazon was successful in part because their recommendation system did exactly what you and the grandparent are complaining about: it recommended things that were very similar to the thing that you'd just bought. This works well for books, music, and films / TV shows, because if you like one thing in one of these categories then you'll probably like other similar things in the same category. At the simplest level, if you just bought season 1 of a show, there's a good chance that you'll buy season 2. It doesn't work so well for things like cars or computers: if you've bought one laptop, then there's a very low chance that you'll want to buy a similar laptop next week.

Comment: Re:There's no such thing as a free lunch (Score 1) 125

by TheRaven64 (#48683555) Attached to: Google and Apple Weaseling Out of "Do Not Track"

For me, the quality of ads (meaning the probability that I'd actually click on them) went down a lot when Google started targeting ads at me, rather than at the content of the page that I was viewing. You don't need all of the stalker-like behaviour on ad networks to classify web pages, match them with relevant adverts, and show non-tracking ads.

I'm a bit surprised that there isn't a startup doing tracking-free ads. I bet a lot of people who use AdBlock would be willing to put in an exemption for a company that did not track and ran plain text only ads (you know, like the ads Google used to run, back when we all liked the relevant and non-annoying Google ads).

Comment: Re:Not new (Score 1) 125

by TheRaven64 (#48683537) Attached to: Google and Apple Weaseling Out of "Do Not Track"
I always understood that the point of DNT was simply to advertise intent, so that in any future discussions, in or out of court, the tracking companies would not be able to claim any form of implicit consent. It doesn't matter that it's optional or unenforceable on a technical level, it matters that you can't track people who set the DNT header and then say 'well, they didn't object at the time...' when hit by a class-action lawsuit.

Comment: Re:Why the 1st model starts at -800? (Score 1) 60

by TheRaven64 (#48683357) Attached to: First Airbus A350 XWB Delivered, Will Start Service in January
Always Europe at one end, Asia or the USA at the other end. I've been on one or two full flights from the USA, but I've also been on one where everyone in economy plus had a row of 3 seats to themselves, though economy was packed. Flying ANA to Japan there were quite a few empty seats.

Comment: Re: FFS just keep the Warthog (Score 1) 248

Who the fuck cares about the hypothetical performance of the plane in some scenario that didn't come to be? What we have is a track record of A-10 performing a stellar job in the wars that have actually happened, from Iraq in 1991 onward. And with ISIS it looks like there will be more of that kind of thing in the future. Retiring a highly successful piece of military hardware when there's clear need for it now and in the future, and no suitable replacement, is just retarded.

Comment: Re:Wrong assumption (Score 1) 515

by shutdown -p now (#48681645) Attached to: Paul Graham: Let the Other 95% of Great Programmers In

What about western Europe?

They don't really rely on skilled immigration to a significant extent. And for what they do, they have states in EU itself to cover it (Poland, Romania etc).

The US is the most populous developed country therefore in absolute terms will always have more jobs and more immigrants.

Even if you look at per capita numbers, US does beat Canada, which I would argue to be the most skilled immigration-friendly country.

However the quality of life is really debatable. Many people would prefer the quality of life of Europe, Canada, Japan, Australia. Personally I think oil rich Norway seems to offer the best quality of life.

The mistake that is often made when estimating said quality is looking at the averaged stats. Thing is, if you're immigrating for the sake of a good job, you need to look at what that job (and others like it) will give you, as opposed to the average or the median. In US, the average is indeed lower than most other western countries because of the wealth gap and piss-poor welfare policies. But people coming here for high-paid jobs (like IT) are getting a deal that's much better than average. And with enough money, you can absolutely have a great experience in US - a good house safe low-crime neighborhood, a great school for your kids in the same neighborhood, solid healthcare, and a private pension fund for retirement. And plenty of jobs to pick from.

Comment: Re: This is MY suggestion on how to start to fix (Score 1) 139

by causality (#48681541) Attached to: 13,000 Passwords, Usernames Leaked For Major Commerce, Porn Sites

Instead of passing harsher laws, maybe we should require that you (and people like you) should be only allowed to use the internet under the supervision of a caretaker.

Of course, if you seriously advocate that people take responsibility for their networks, their equipment, and their decisions and realize the part they play in enabling the problems they complain about, you'll be accused of "blaming the victim".

Still, unlike the harsher laws that vary by jurisdiction (of which some have no extradition treaties), this actually stands a chance of working. On a hostile network like the Internet, nothing other than hardening the targets is going to actually improve security. It would also be nice for the rest of us not to have to contend with botnets and other problems made possible entirely by the clueless who want all the benefits of a general-purpose global network but don't want to put forth the effort to learn how it works and how to use it responsibly.

They strongly resemble the child who wants a pet cat but doesn't want to feed it and change its litter box because that part isn't fun.

Comment: Re:Cards are safer than cash. (Score 2) 139

by causality (#48681451) Attached to: 13,000 Passwords, Usernames Leaked For Major Commerce, Porn Sites

Dependency: Of course the people who can't afford to keep their CC balance at zero end up paying for my peace of mind via increased interest rates. Ultimately CC's are an unfair burden on the "working poor" and become "just another bill" when they inevitably hit their limit (been there, done that). The sad fact is that if everyone at every point in their life could afford to keep the balance at zero nobody would pay interest and CCs would not exist.

That last sentence is false and shows you don't fully understand what you're discussing. The merchant is charged a fee, usually a small percentage of the transaction, each time you use your credit card. Even if you never personally pay interest because you pay in full each month, the bank issuing the credit card is making money from your use of that card.

Incidentally, this is also why some small, local, mom-and-pop stores won't accept a credit card unless your total purchase exceeds a certain amount. The fee they must pay isn't worthwhile to them if the transaction is too small. Larger stores are better able to absorb it and just consider it a cost of doing business.

What this country needs is a good five dollar plasma weapon.