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Video High-Security, Open-Source Router is a Hit on Indiegogo (Video) 24

The device is called the Turris Omnia, and its Indiegogo page says it's a "hi-performance & open-source router." Their fundraising goal is $100,000. So far, 1,191 backers have pledged $248,446 (as of the moment this was typed), with 49 days left to go. They've shipped 2,000 pieces so far but, says interviewee Ondej Filip, "95% of them are in the Czech Republic."

This is not only an open-source project, but non-profit as well. A big motive for it is heightened security, as the interview (and transcript) make clear. It's also apparent that the hardware here is overkill for a router; it can run a complete Linux distro, no problem, so it can function as a server, not just as a router. Interested? You might want to put a reservation in soon. This isn't the cheapest router (or even server) out there, but a lot of people obviously think a Turris Omnia, with its crypto security, automatic updates, and server functions would be nice to have.

Comment Not the first full recovery from space (Score 1) 99

SpaceShip One touched space and all elements were recovered and flew to space again.

BO's demonstration is more publicity than practical rocketry. It doesn't look like the aerodynamic elements of BO's current rocket are suitable for recovery after orbital injection, just after a straight up-down space tourism flight with no potential for orbit, just like SpaceShip One (and Two). They can't put an object in space and have it stay in orbit. They can just take dudes up for a short and expensive view and a little time in zero gee.

It's going to be real history when SpaceX recovers the first stage after an orbital injection, in that it will completely change the economics of getting to space and staying there.

Comment Re:Bullshit (Score 1) 383

Assault rifles, explosives, and ammunition are not against the law.

In most (sane) countries they're restricted, and even if they aren't they're pretty damning if combined with evidence of a conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism.

It's a bit like the "possession of burglary tools" charge that gets tacked on to a break and enter... having a crowbar isn't illegal. Having a crowbar while crawling through someone's backyard at 4am is an indication that you're not just really, really drunk.

Comment Re:Bullshit (Score 1) 383

Sure conspiracy is a crime, but it's not an easy one to prove.

Even when the conspirators are sitting on a stockpile of forged documents, assault rifles, ammunition and explosives?

Criminals (of any sort, not just terrorists) need tools and intelligence (of the targeting sort, not the brainpower sort), and the best opportunity to stop them is during the phase where they're gathering that stuff. Obviously, you're not going to do much if the attacker is basically walking out the door with a knife and stabbing the first person they see, but bigger targets need more tools and information gathering.

I'm not making an argument, by the way, for pervasive surveillance or anything like that; it's pretty darn obvious now that law enforcement goes to shit when you do it with a dragnet. But there's definitely a time and place for law enforcement doing proper undercover intelligence gathering and investigations. If they stopped dicking around with all the Orwellian stuff they might even have the time and money to do it right.

Comment Re:Another in a long series of marketing mistakes (Score 1) 136

You'd need a popular product to pull off obtaining second-clientage from governments, and you'd need not to reveal that your device had legal intercept.

This is just a poorly-directed company continuing to shoot itself in the foot. It's not made its product desirable for government, or for anyone else.

Comment Another in a long series of marketing mistakes (Score 2) 136

There's a truism in marketing that you can only differentiate your product on the parts that the customer sees and uses. Blackberry just can't learn this lesson. They tried differentiating on the OS kernel, which the customer never sees. And now on an insecurity feature that the customer won't be allowed to use. It's been a protracted death spiral, but it's a continuing one.

Comment What's Wrong with the Hobbit? (Score 2) 173

The Hobbit books are to a great extent about race war. The races are alien and fictional, but they are races, and the identification of good or bad is on racial boundaries. This isn't all that unusual in the fantasy genre, or even some sci-fi.

Lots of people love those books. And there's lots of good in them. To me, the race stuff stuck out.


Video Meet Mårten Mickos, Serial Open Source CEO (Video) 22

Marten was the MySQL CEO who built the company from a small-time free software database developer into a worldwide software juggernaut he sold to Sun Microsystems. Next, he became CEO of Eucalyptus Systems, another open source operation, which Hewlett Packard bought in 2014. Now Mårten is CEO of hackerone, a company that hooks security-worried companies up with any one of thousands of ethical hackers worldwide.

Some of those hackers might be companies that grew out of university CS departments, and some of them may be individual high school students working from their kitchen tables. Would a large company Board of Directors trust a kid hacker who came to them with a bug he found in their software? Probably not. But if Mårten or one of his hackerone people contacts that company, it's likely to listen -- and set up a bug bounty program if they don't have one already.

Essentially, once again Mårten is working as an intermediary between technically proficient people -- who may or may not conform to sociey's idea of a successful person -- and corporate executives who need hackers' skills and services but may not know how to find non-mainstream individuals or even know the difference between "hackers" and "crackers." Editor's note: I have known and respected Mårten for many years. If this interview seems like a conversation between two old friends, it is.

Comment Re:Of course they'd blame technology (Score 1) 259

Many of the 9/11 terrorists were well-off educated people. I recall at least one of them was an engineer, apparently assimilated.

Individually, sure. But they came from a restrictive, barbaric, extremist culture. It's about the environment, not the individuals.

I doubt we'll see western culture take the long view, anyway. We're too stuck on instant gratification, quick fixes, and reactionary thinking.

"You can't get very far in this world without your dossier being there first." -- Arthur Miller