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Comment: Re:Fifth amendment zone of lawlessness (Score 5, Insightful) 431

by pr0t0 (#48925123) Attached to: Justice Department: Default Encryption Has Created a 'Zone of Lawlessness'

The DOJ made their bed.

They continue to hoover-up massive amounts of data on everything from telecommunications to, as recently reported, vehicle movements, on everyone within and outside US borders. We are meant to trust that this data will not be abused by those who collect it, and that it cannot be hacked/modified/stolen by anyone else.

We have no choice but to encrypt our data. We seemingly have no way to stop it's collection, and those who collect it have repeatedly shown themselves to be poor stewards of that data (lack of protection, accessed without warrant, etc.). They've transitioned their methodologies based on that data being available and unencrypted, and failed to prepare for the inevitable fact that data encryption would eventually become commonplace...with or without Snowden...because there are lots of bad actors in the world.

Comment: Google Sites (Score 3, Informative) 302

by pr0t0 (#48872265) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Has the Time Passed For Coding Website from Scratch?

If all your client wants is a simple/stupid brochure site that they can maintain, just build it in Google Sites with a Google account they can own. You can do a whole site in 1-3 hours depending on how much custom graphics you have to build. You can reasonably charge $250-1000 depending on your time, and spend an hour training them on how to maintain it so you don't have to in perpetuity.

I've done this just a few times now (twice for free), and every time I'm glad I did. The more you dig into it, the more you realize it actually does allow for *some* customization. If you get into the scripting, you can do even more. I see tech-challenged people starting their small (1-20 people) brick & mortar businesses and being totally lost on things like document sharing, company email, web sites, cloud storage, etc. I just hook them up with the Google Business apps...$50/person/year. It's cheap and works.

Comment: Re:Nothing has been lost! (Score 5, Insightful) 290

by pr0t0 (#48820993) Attached to: Bitcoin Volatility Puts Miners Under Pressure

Agreed. Also, I don't ever recall return on investment as being one of the selling points of BitCoin in the first place. It was meant as an alternative to currency, not an investment vehicle. Even if the value dropped to parity with the US Dollar or below, it would still retain its initial utility. So again, nothing lost.

Comment: Better with GPS? (Score 1) 62

by pr0t0 (#48738539) Attached to: Project Ryptide Drone Flies Life-Rings To Distressed Swimmers

While not addressing all concerns, I wonder if it would be more effective to automate it through the use of a swimmer-worn panic button. I envision a situation where the swimmer hits the button, and the Ryptide copter flies to the swimmer automatically. Not sure if GPS is accurate enough for that though. A life-ring dropped four feet away from a swimmer in panic is probably useless.

Comment: Already in process? (Score 1) 83

by pr0t0 (#48692047) Attached to: Russia Plans To Build World First DNA Databank of All Living Things

Aren't there already several DNA library initiatives underway? I think one is called LifeTechnologies, and then there's the seed vault in Norway (I think it's Norway). There was also talks a long time ago about putting a DNA library on the moon, which obviously has not happened yet.

Comment: Pay with the pension fund! (Score 4, Interesting) 515

by pr0t0 (#48581541) Attached to: Once Again, Baltimore Police Arrest a Person For Recording Them

I have friends who are cops. It's a shitty, thankless job where you get to enjoy the worst of human behavior. Oh, and occasionally your life is on the line; risking widowing your wife and leaving your kids without a father. Many of them were soldiers who enlisted, had a gun put in their hand at 18 years old, and taught to kill other people. It's easy to see how cops can become jaded and not give a crap about rights. A lot of them are pretty nice work-a-day randos just trying to get through life like the rest of us.

That said, I think in this instance the best way to police cops is to let them police themselves by hitting them where it really hurts: personal finances. So for example, the resulting remuneration from a lawsuit where cop takes your phone and erases a video is paid for from the police pension fund. Further, that officer's personal pension is reset to zero, or halved or some other appropriate consequence. That's a pretty powerful motivator, and there will be huge pressure from within the ranks to keep their shit wired tight. I also think it would need to be very narrowly defined. The last thing we want is officers afraid to do anything for fear of losing their pension.

Comment: Re:It's already been proven. (Score 1) 129

by pr0t0 (#48530701) Attached to: How Astronomers Will Take the "Image of the Century": a Black Hole

Unless those stars are orbiting outside the galactic plane, then I don't believe that is "actual imagery". Maybe it's a representation (based on the data) of what it would look like if you could hover above the galactic plane and look down at the black hole.

This is why this project seems strange to me. Why image our own galactic center? There's roughly 25,000 light years of dust and stars to see through. Why not image the center of a galaxy that's plane is perpendicular to us?

Information is the inverse of entropy.