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Comment Re:So let's change the algorithm. (Score 3, Informative) 170

Not really, since the salt would need to be publicly known for Gravatar to work (and it would break any backwards compatibility to add it in now). This was a 'social engineering' attack, not a rainbow table lookup – it pieced the name together with common providers to find a matching MD5. Salt would just add a single extra step.

I believe it's exactly the same problem/attack as was brought up about MicroID in the past. The idea of Pavatar is a much better way to do this sort of avatar-finding (though the decentralisation comes with its own problems), since it relies on a public web address instead of a semi-private e-mail address.

Comment Re:Childs should get twenty years (Score 1) 502

If Childs' boss WAS authorized for the information by policy, and Childs honestly felt the boss would misuse the information for something illegal and/or was gunning for Childs, then his actions may or may not be justifiable in this case - he's going to have to produce some proof that his boss had an illegitimate purpose. That could be tough.

Especially considering the City and his (former?) colleagues have had 18 months to doctor and erase the actual evidence that would vindicate Child's. I hope he had copious copies of relevant information tucked away off site.

Comment Re:Indictment of cloud computing? (Score 1) 52

I guess you were using the "on-demand" pricing. If you use a reserved instance on a 3-year term you start at $4900 + $0.42/hour. I think this works out to only $15,937 over the three years which is less then half the $36k you quoted.

I am looking at a single smaller machine. My current dedicated server is ~$200/month. Thats about $7.5k over 3 years. The equivalent EC2 reserved instance is only $350+$0.03/hour. That's $788 total for 3 years or a tenth of the price! Sounds like a hot deal to me :)

Of course at this time you can only reserve Linux instances and I happen to need a windows one so I have to go with the on-demand prices :(

Comment Re:Backing Bruce's Copyright (Score 1) 316

Compilation copyright is a somewhat ridiculous concept that has gained popularity recently. It's akin to saying that you own the copyright to the particular selection of packages and programs on a particular Linux distro or install CD, for instance.

Its valid copyright law.

So if you have have a collective (or compilation if you want to call it that) copyright on a selection of separately licensed copyrighted works, someone can take your collection and add, remove, or modify something (say, add there logo) and it becomes a seperate collection not covered by the original collective copyright.

Derivative works doent effect collective copyright, its a different type of copyright to copyrighted "works".

Artificial intelligence has the same relation to intelligence as artificial flowers have to flowers. -- David Parnas