Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: ASLR != security through obfuscation/obscurity (Score 1) 184

by pj81381 (#40671665) Attached to: Android Jelly Bean Much Harder To Hack
Security through obfuscation/obscurity is when a company says "It's secure because it's proprietary." Seriously, because they have security experts looking at their implementation and critiquing it, by definition it's not security by obfuscation.

ASLR is a very important OS security mechanism. With DEP, which prevents hackers from simply placing an exploit in the application's own memory and executing that, hackers need to be able to determine where system libraries are in memory, in order to leverage them to execute their exploit code. If they get the memory location wrong, the exploited application will most likely crash (the stack will return to a memory location with unpredictable results). It isn't simply a matter of trying randomly, because they can't.

Comment: Missing the point? (Score 1) 134

by pj81381 (#32388206) Attached to: Google Describes Wi-Fi Sniffing In Pending Patent
The patent, titled "Wireless network-based location approximation", describes packet analysis for determining location, which nobody denies was being done intentionally by Google, and says nothing of using payload data. This was what sparked the current wave of privacy inquiries anyway, as well as the incorrect comment that they weren't capturing payload data.

Comment: Re:Evaporation? (Score 1) 263

by pj81381 (#32271818) Attached to: New Estimates Say Earth's Oceans Smaller Than Once Believed
From the article:

The trend toward a progressive lowering of volume estimates is not because the world's oceans are losing water. Rather, it reflects a greater ability to locate undersea mountain ranges and other formations, which take up space that would otherwise be occupied by water.

Also, we might be in trouble if we were losing enough atmosphere to lose 500 Great Lakes worth of water in 30-40 years, especially considering there isn't much water vapor in the upper atmosphere, due to low temperature.

Comment: Backpedals? (Score 2, Insightful) 145

by pj81381 (#31966814) Attached to: Google Backpedals On Turn-By-Turn GPS For iPhone
"Clarifies" is probably more correct. The prior article that indicates confirmation of navigation for the iPhone has no quoted text which actually confirms plans to bring navigation to other phones. And the above quote doesn't even read as "we won't bring navigation to the iPhone", but rather "we did not confirm we will bring navigation to the iPhone". I believe this is also in line with prior statements they've made on Google Maps Navigation, so it's not like they're really changing anything.

Comment: Re:I could be stupid (Score 5, Interesting) 165

by pj81381 (#31045130) Attached to: Israeli Scientists Freeze Water By Warming It

I thought pure water doesn't go solid, not until an impurity starts crystal formation that turns the water into a solid?

This comment seems really unintuitive so I looked around a little. Ice can actually form entirely without crystallization, by cooling it to ~137 C in a matter of milliseconds. The article also mentions that "pure water, in the absence of any nucleating surface, can remain in a supercooled liquid state down to temperatures as low as -40C". I guess that means that pure water will begin crystallizing at this temperature anyway.

Comment: Re:Remember folks, it's a NETbook. (Score 2, Insightful) 298

by pj81381 (#31042968) Attached to: Google Docs Replaces OpenOffice In Ubuntu Netbook Edition

The netbook market is comprised of about three types of people A) People who go "Oooohhhhh look a cheap device that runs a real OS for hundreds less than a "real" computer" (this is most people. B) People who go "Ooooh this is tiny I can take this on vacations/business trips/etc" (this is some people) C) People who go "Oooh this cheap thing is going to be online 24/7, never going to be offline and I want to run no local apps on its 160 gig HDD!" (just about no one)

What about tablet PCs and "smartbooks"? Manufacturers seem to think the market is trending towards C. This change makes sense especially considering tablet PCs' limited functionality as a productivity tool, as well as (relatively) limited hard disk space. Even following your assumption that just about everybody is or will be in category A, this change still makes sense for UNR. People in category A can still install OpenOffice or whatever other applications they want, just like they would on say Windows...or (perhaps more appropriate wrt your comment) just install Ubuntu Desktop.

Comment: Re:Slow QWERTY typer (Score 1) 203

by pj81381 (#30862028) Attached to: Pen vs. Keyboard vs. Touch vs. Everything Else

The actual words per minute are probably easier for most people to compare to. Here are Mr. Gyford's results:

  • Full sized QWERTY: 68.35 WPM
  • iPhone SW keyboard: 44.80 WPM
  • Treo HW keyboard: 41.05 WPM
  • Pen and paper: 39.82 WPM
  • Newton MessagePad: 23.81 WPM
  • Palm Graffiti: 18.02 WPM

His QWERTY typing speed is pretty decent. At this speed, input with QWERTY is about 1.53 times his second result with the iPhone SW keyboard.

I was also wondering if the iPhone input software uses auto-completion. This could account for why his second pass was noticeably better than his first, which averaged 36.73 WPM, as well as why his input speed was pretty decent.

Comment: Re:Question (Score 4, Informative) 93

by pj81381 (#30716290) Attached to: $199 Freescale Tablet Design Runs Chromium OS
Hey, this thing is (supposedly) $199 and has a touch screen!

At least the exact same tablets running Android and Ubuntu do. At about 11:34, Mr. Subramanian says "Chromium today does not support touch screen...". So it's not the tablet hardware which doesn't include a touch screen, but the build of Chromium they're using.

FORTUNE'S FUN FACTS TO KNOW AND TELL: A firefly is not a fly, but a beetle.