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Comment: Re:Apple goes to the other extreme (Score 1) 188

by R3d M3rcury (#49626481) Attached to: Google Can't Ignore the Android Update Problem Any Longer

I have to upgrade otherwise a critical piece of software (e.g. Xcode) will not run.

Or you end up a situation where you have to use older software.

Of course, if you're a developer and you're making Apps, Apple will at some point insist that your applications must link against the latest version of the operating system if you want to release through their stores (and you don't have much choice if it's iOS) which means that, yes, you have to go buy new hardware. I'm facing this pretty soon with my five year-old MacBook Pro.

But for people who are not developers, there isn't as much of an issue.

Comment: Re:This seems batshit crazy. (Score 1) 127

by R3d M3rcury (#49626391) Attached to: Police Can Obtain Cellphone Location Records Without a Warrant

Same difference. I expect that my location is kept private too.

Your expectations may be off, then.

For example, if I call you, the police can find out that I spoke with you by checking my or your telephone records. While they cannot determine what was said, they can know that I called you at a particular time.

Where you are is somewhat the same thing and is probably protected in the same way.

Comment: Re:Shuttle (Score 1) 35

by R3d M3rcury (#49626323) Attached to: SpaceX Testing Passenger Escape System Tomorrow

Put space exploration into private hands, which will find a profitable way to do it, and space exploration will, to coin a phrase, take off.

What if there is no profitable way to do it?

Don't get me wrong--I love what SpaceX is doing and I believe it will save the US Taxpayer and businesses money sending items and people into orbit. But exploration is expensive and you may not find what you're looking for--a bad Return On Investment.

I'm reminded of the old saw about the California gold rush: the only people who made money were the people who mined the miners.

I mean, who's SpaceX's biggest customer? The US Government.

Network

The Ambitions and Challenges of Mesh Networks and the Local Internet Movement 13

Posted by Soulskill
from the net-positives-and-net-negatives dept.
Lashdots writes: Two artists in New York are hatching a plan to teach kids about the internet by building their own. They'll be creating a small, decentralized network, similar to a mesh network, to access other computers, and they'll be developing their own simple social network to communicate with other people. It's part of a growing movement to supplement the Internet with resilient, local alternatives. "And yet, while the decentralized, ad hoc network architecture appeals philosophically to tech-savvy users fed up with monopolistic ISPs, nobody’s found a way to make mesh networks work easily and efficiently enough to replace home Internet connections. Built more for resiliency than for speed, each participating router must continuously search for the best paths to far-flung machines. For now, that makes them of limited interest to many ordinary consumers who simply want to check their email and watch movies."
Security

Cyberlock Lawyers Threaten Security Researcher Over Vulnerability Disclosure 26

Posted by Soulskill
from the what-year-is-this dept.
qubezz writes: Security researcher Phar (Mike Davis/IOActive) gave his 30 days of disclosure notice to Cyberlock (apparently a company that makes electronic lock cylinders) that he would release a public advisory on vulnerabilities he found with the company's security devices. On day 29, their lawyers responded with a request to refrain, feigning ignorance of the previous notice, and invoking mention of the DMCA (this is not actually a DMCA takedown notice, as the law firm is attempting to suppress initial disclosure through legal wrangling). Mike's blog states: "The previous DMCA threats are from a company called Cyberlock, I had planned to do a fun little blog post (cause i ... hate blog posts) on the fun of how I obtained one, extracted the firmware bypassing the code protection and figured out its "encryption" and did various other fun things a lock shouldn't do for what its marketed as.. But before I could write that post I needed to let them know what issues we have deemed weaknesses in their gear.. the below axe grinderery is the results. (sic)" What should researchers do when companies make baseless legal threats to maintain their security-through-obscurity? Related: Bitcoin exchange company Coinbase has been accused of spying on a dark net researcher.
Space

SpaceX Testing Passenger Escape System Tomorrow 35

Posted by Soulskill
from the coming-home-safely dept.
An anonymous reader writes: On Wednesday, SpaceX will be performing the first test of a prototype for its passenger capsule escape system. Most rockets have a launch abort system that will save the lives of its crew within the first few minutes of launch, but not beyond a relatively low altitude. SpaceX is designing the new system to be able to return astronauts safely whether they're close to the ground or near orbit.

The Dragon capsule will fire eight SuperDraco thrusters, capable of producing 120,000 lbs of axial thrust between them in under a second. With that amount of thrust, the capsule can get half a kilometer away from a failing rocket in under 5 seconds. SpaceX will have 270 sensors aboard the prototype, including a crash test dummy. The main mission goals include: determining the best sequencing for the launch abort timeline, getting all eight thrusters to fire in unison, and seeing how an aborted launch affects both the inside of the capsule and the area around it. The test is planned to start at 7 a.m. EDT (11:00 UTC), but they have a 7.5-hour window if there are minor delays.
Cellphones

Police Can Obtain Cellphone Location Records Without a Warrant 127

Posted by Soulskill
from the your-data-is-our-data dept.
mi writes: A new ruling from the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals found by a margin of 9-2 that law enforcement does not need to get a warrant to grab your cell phone's location records. The justices ruled that there is no expectation of privacy for your location when you're using a cell phone. This decision (PDF) was based on a case in which a man was convicted of robbery after months of location data was given to authorities by his cell phone carrier, MetroPCS. Police got the information using a court order, rather than a warrant, because there were less stringent requirements involved. One of the judges wrote: "We find no reason to conclude that cellphone users lack facts about the functions of cell towers or about telephone providers' recording cell tower usage."

Comment: Re:Nah. (Score 2) 188

by R3d M3rcury (#49625089) Attached to: Google Can't Ignore the Android Update Problem Any Longer

Most users don't consider the security side, which means they're probably quite happy with KitKat and see no reason to upgrade--or they'll upgrade when they get a new phone which they can try before they buy.

While I agree that OEM supported upgrades for older phones are spotty at best, who would you have do it instead?

Android

Google Can't Ignore the Android Update Problem Any Longer 188

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-bet-they-can dept.
An anonymous reader writes: An editorial at Tom's Hardware makes the case that Google's Android fragmentation problem has gotten too big to ignore any longer. Android 5.0 Lollipop and its successor 5.1 have seen very low adoption rates — 9.0% and 0.7% respectively. Almost 40% of users are still on KitKat. 6% lag far behind on Gingerbread and Froyo. The article points out that even Microsoft is now making efforts to both streamline Windows upgrades and adapt Android (and iOS) apps to run on Windows.

If Google doesn't adapt, "it risks having users (slowly but surely) switch to more secure platforms that do give them updates in a timely manner. And if users want those platforms, OEMs will have no choice but to switch to them too, leaving Google with less and less Android adoption." The author also says OEMs and carriers can no longer be trusted to handle operating system updates, because they've proven themselves quite incapable of doing so in a reasonable manner.

+ - Uber? It's not in Kansas anymore->

Submitted by mpicpp
mpicpp writes: Need a cab in Kansas? You'll have to hail one the old-fashioned way. Uber isn't in Kansas anymore.

It stopped operations there Tuesday after the state legislature approved a new law the company says makes it "impossible" to keep operating.

Kansas legislators voted to override Gov. Sam Brownback's veto of new, stricter regulations on companies like Uber, that allow people to hail a ride with an app on their smartphone.

The governor said the new rules are "premature."
"To over-regulate or improperly regulate an emerging industry before the marketplace actors make proper arrangements is to invite more, problems, not less," he said in April, when he vetoed the legislation.

Uber first launched in Kansas about a year ago.
The company was actually on board with the original draft of the new rules. It required Uber to disclose certain information to customers, including how fares are calculated and the driver's license plate number before they get in the car. Uber already does those things in its app.

But, the final bill also requires Uber drivers to carry a level of insurance that the company said is not required in any other state.

Link to Original Source
Classic Games (Games)

GOG Announces Open Beta For New Game Distribution Platform 66

Posted by Soulskill
from the taking-advantage-of-valve's-stumble dept.
New submitter Donaithnen writes: Like many geeks, I'm against the idea of DRM in general and have championed GOG.com's DRM-free approach to selling games online. Yet like many geeks, I've also often succumbed to the temptation of Steam because of the convenience of tracking, installing, and playing my PC game purchases through the launcher (not to mention the compulsion of collecting achievements, and watching the total playtime for my favorite games (to my occasional dismay). Now, GOG has announced the open beta for GOG Galaxy, an entirely optional launcher to allow those who want (and only those who want) to have all the same features when playing GOG games.

+ - SpaceX Testing Passenger Escape System Tomorrow->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: On Wednesday, SpaceX will be performing the first test of a prototype for its passenger capsule escape system. Most rockets have a launch abort system that will save the lives of its crew within the first few minutes of launch, but not beyond a relatively low altitude. SpaceX is designing the new system to be able to return astronauts safely from the ground all the way up into orbit. The Dragon capsule will fire eight SuperDraco thrusters, each capable of producing 120,000 lbs of axial thrust in under a second. With that amount of thrust, the capsule can get half a kilometer away from a failing rocket in under 5 seconds. SpaceX will have 270 sensors about the prototype, including a crash test dummy. The main mission goals include determining the best sequencing for the launch abort timeline, getting all eight thrusters to fire in unison, and seeing how an aborted launch affects both the inside of the capsule and the area around it. The test is planned to start at 7 a.m. EDT (11:00 UTC), but they have a 7.5-hour window if there are minor delays.
Link to Original Source

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