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Comment: Re: ...letmegetthisstraight (Score 1) 62

Sorry, I was confusing CVC1 and CVC2... though some cards include CVC2 as well, and you don't need to provide the CVC2 or any other data when you use the magstripe, so it doesn't really matter.

Yes, magstripe cards are insecure by design, but we hardly need to make fraud easier. It's a lot safer and simpler for a criminal to stick an antenna in their pocket than to try to grab legible images of the fronts and backs of cards.

Comment: ...letmegetthisstraight (Score 3, Insightful) 62

So it amplifies and broadcasts the signal held on the magnetic stripe of an old-style credit card. The completely unencrypted, insecure data that has your card number AND the 3-4 digit verification number.

Why? Because modern card readers will never catch on, of course! Especially when retailers will be tripping over themselves to switch to the new smart readers in a year, since the credit card processors will hold them responsible for any fraud resulting from still using the old gear.

This is a train wreck. Good on LoopPay for convincing some sucker to buy them before their product falls on its face.

Comment: Re:...and nothing of value was lost... (Score 1) 294

by ChipMonk (#48994293) Attached to: Radioshack Declares Bankruptcy
Nothing against Farnell/e14/RS, but sometimes it's nice to be able to talk to a person, face to face, when an issue arises. You can take the item back to the store, discuss the issue, look the item over, look each other in the eye, and reach a conclusion as to how to proceed. A phone call, or email, lacks that kind of personal contact. Given the choice between a store and mail order, I'll choose the store whenever I can.

+ - Mathematicians Uncomfortable With Ties To NSA, But Not Pulling Back->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "When we talk about how the NSA operates, it's typically about the policymakers and what the agency should or should not do. It's worth remembering that the NSA is built upon the backs of world-class mathematicians, whom they aggressively recruit to make all their underlying surveillance technology work. A new piece in Science discusses how the relationship between mathematicians and the NSA has changed following the Snowden leaks (PDF). But as Peter Woit points out, these ethical conundrums are not actually spurring any change. This is perhaps due to the NSA's generous funding of mathematics-related research. The article talks about the American Mathematical Society, which until recently was led by David Vogan: "...after all was said and done, no action was taken. Vogan describes a meeting about the matter last year with an AMS governing committee as 'terrible,' revealing little interest among the rest of the society’s leadership in making a public statement about NSA’s ethics, let alone cutting ties. Ordinary AMS members, by and large, feel the same way, adds Vogan, who this week is handing over the presidency to Robert Bryant, a mathematician at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. For now, U.S. mathematicians aren't willing to disown their shadowy but steadfast benefactor.""
Link to Original Source

+ - How Gaseous, Neptune-Like Planets Can Become Habitable->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Life as we know it requires small, rocky planets. The gas giants of our solar system aren't habitable (to our knowledge), but a research team has discovered that smaller, Neptune-like planets can be transformed into gas-free, potentially habitable worlds with a little help from red dwarf stars. Such planets are usually formed far out in a planetary system, but tidal forces can cause them to migrate inward. When they reach the habitable zone of their host star, they absorb far larger amounts of x-ray and ultraviolet radiation. This can eventually boil off most of the the gas atmosphere, leaving behind the core: a small, rocky world capable of supporting life."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Is someone looking for a job? (Score 2) 80

by pushing-robot (#48901597) Attached to: SpaceX, US Air Force Settle Spy Sat Dispute

The Falcon 9 (1.0 and 1.1 combined) has had one partial failure and 12 successful launches, the Antares one complete failure out of five launches, the Delta II one failure (and one partial failure) out of 152, the Delta IV Medium 20 successful launches with no failures, the IV heavy 7 successes and 1 partial failure on a test flight, the Atlas V 51 successes and 1 partial failure. Yes, the Delta III was horrible, but it was only launched three times back in the 90s and abandoned.

The DoD launch you're talking about happened in 2007. No other US company could get a satellite in GSO at the time. SpaceX had only launched two Falcon 1s for DARPA at that point, both too small, and both failures. Orbital at least had their Pegasus... with ~1/10th the required payload and a poor success rate.

I'm not a ULA apologist, they were simply the only game in town for US satellite launches, and charged accordingly. SpaceX's recent successes have put them on track to become serious competition, and that's great. But you'd be crazy to trust a new space company with high-value payloads until they have a few successful launches under their belt.

Comment: Re:Is someone looking for a job? (Score 1) 80

by pushing-robot (#48901279) Attached to: SpaceX, US Air Force Settle Spy Sat Dispute

There are only three US companies with LEO capabilities: ULA (Boeing/Lockheed), SpaceX, and Orbital.

Of those three, Orbital's Antares is currently grounded after its spontaneous disassembly a few months ago, and our darling SpaceX's Falcon 9 1.1 has only been in use since 2013. ULA's Delta and Atlas have longer and better track records and much higher payload capacity than the Antares or Falcon 9.

On top of that, SpaceX and Orbital have never handled classified payloads before, so that's training and time and effort on the part of the USAF.

While I wouldn't be surprised if there's some palm-greasing going on behind the scenes between USAF and ULA, I also can't blame them for not trusting startups with billion dollar spy satellites.

Comment: Re:This reminds me... (Score 5, Informative) 145

by pushing-robot (#48894893) Attached to: NVIDIA Responds To GTX 970 Memory Bug

You're describing 'TurboCache' (a marketing name if ever there was one).

It wasn't a secret, it was only on very low end cards, and ATI was already doing the same with 'HyperMemory'. Intel, for their part, was exclusively using system RAM at the time (and largely still is).

So what graphics *have* you been buying for the last decade?

Comment: Re:Remember when you guys applauded Holder... (Score 1) 385

by pushing-robot (#48857017) Attached to: FBI Seeks To Legally Hack You If You're Connected To TOR Or a VPN

Technically this is the FBI, so you should be pissed off at Comey, not Holder. Comey is officially Holder's subordinate at the DoJ, though I'm not sure how much the FBI chief really answers for.

And you won't have to wait so long for Holder's departure; he announced his resignation months ago and Obama already tapped his replacement.

Byte your tongue.