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Comment: Well, kinda. There is flawed reasoning here. (Score 3, Insightful) 245

by shumacher (#39798997) Attached to: Microsoft Says Two Basic Security Steps Might Have Stopped Conficker

The assumption here is that an attacker choosing the easiest way has no other route. It would be safer to say that the route used by the worm would have been unavailable if basic preventative steps had been taken.

It's like the old joke. "Ever wonder why whatever you're looking for is always in the last place you look?" "Well, sure, once you've found it, why keep looking?"

Microsoft seems to think the authors would have stopped looking without finding an exploit route. Instead, they found one, and stopped looking.

Comment: Re:Mixed message (Score 1) 627

by shumacher (#38266530) Attached to: Using a Tablet As Your Primary Computer

Eh, I kinda agree with him. I hate it when my phone is a computer too.

I do appreciate that Apple has spent some time making things snappy. I understand this isn't always the case (iOS 4 on iPhone 3G for example).

It sounds like he's complaining about being told that he has to update this, scan that, defrag something, and turn on his firewall for crissakes. My netbook is far more interested in telling me that whatever programs I run at boot have a new version out than just opening whatever program I need to use badly enough to have turned the thing on.

And that's the deal here - firing up a desktop operating system in the first place requires a certain amount of work and carries with it a certain cost that makes using a desktop operating system for short periods inefficient.

If you want to, for example, check the weather, for many, it's going to take five minutes of computer stuff to support a minute of the actual task.

Now, someone is going to come in and tell me that Ubintows 7X Meerkat boots faster than an iPad on a triskadecacore i8 with SSD, but I say that's not everyone's experience.

Further, the iPad doesn't expose the finer points of computer configuration, use, and management. The Slashdot crowd has a lot of people whose work exists in that stuff. I'm one, and time with an iPad or CR-48 makes me feel like I can't get work done, but that's often because my work is "computery." For people whose work is word processing, it doesn't matter so much.

So, Slashdot, if your work is working on the tool, it's easy to see a tool that doesn't need your kind of work as a tool that prevents you from doing work.

Comment: Re:DansGuardian (Score 1) 384

by shumacher (#37410870) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Low-Cost Tools To Track Employees' Web Use?

Agreed on DansGuardian. You'd want all ports closed for all users in the organization, including 80 and 443, then you'd want to create an exception for the Dansguardian box.

Also, even if it's on older hardware, consider setting up a second box to serve as backup. Look into proxy autoconfiguration files. You can return two proxy addresses in an autoconfig file, and if your main proxy is down, your clients will silently fail over to the other box. The config files also allow your internal traffic to skip the proxy for things like your intranet site.

Also, consider putting /var/log on it's own partition, if you aren't already. You don't want to let forgetting about your logging directory free space to be able to kick your whole organization off the web.

On squid (DansGuardian is often used with squid) look at your http_safe_ports (I might have that variable a little munged, as I'm not in the config right now) to make sure it's right for your org, and that it matches what your firewall is allowing out.

Data Storage

+ - Write Once Optical M-Disc Stores Your Data Forever->

Submitted by
MojoKid
MojoKid writes "M-Disc technology is a new write once and read forever optical disc format developed by Millenniata. Current DVD technology uses organic dyes and low laser power to make marks on the data layer of a standard recordable DVD. Over time, these marks become unreadable because organic dyes degrade when exposed to minimal levels of light, heat, and humidity, and they have an average lifespan of only about 3 to 5 years. M-Discs store data in physical pits in a patented data layer made entirely of inorganic materials and compounds. The material stays solid from room temperature on up to 500C. Think of it as the modern day equivalent to carving in stone."
Link to Original Source

+ - Cryptanalysis of full AES->

Submitted by betterunixthanunix
betterunixthanunix (980855) writes "Just presented at the rump session of CRYPTO2011: a key recovery attack on the full AES, for all versions (128, 192, 256 bit keys). The attack involves a novel method of cryptanalysis, and results in a key recovery faster than brute force. Luckily, "faster" in this context is still not nearly fast enough to be practical, and AES remains more secure than triple DES (so don't panic just yet)."
Link to Original Source
Wikipedia

+ - Why Are Women Wary of Working Within Wikipedia? 1

Submitted by
Hugh Pickens writes
Hugh Pickens writes writes "Scientific Computing reports that according to a study by researchers at the University of Minnesota although the gender gap has nearly disappeared in other areas of social media with females now outnumbering males on Facebook and Twitter, only 16 percent of new editors joining Wikipedia during 2009 identified themselves as female, those females made only nine percent of the edits, and female editors are more likely to stop editing and leave Wikipedia when their edits are reverted as newcomers. “We were stunned to see such a significant gender gap in Wikipedia,” says John Riedl. “As Wikipedia continues to be a critical information resource, it is important that all voices be heard." One answer to the problem of lack of participation is that more women might become involved in editing Wikipedia if it were a social activity, rather than an insular one writes Piper Klemm, a Ph.D. Candidate in Chemistry at the University of California Berkeley, who recently hosted a WikiWomen party at her house to make the experience collaborative, inviting five female chemists who spent the evening writing about topics related to their research. "While somewhat discouraged at first by the long list of rules, we were quickly laughing and helping each other by sharing what we had learned," writes Klemm. "We reveal the sometimes-hidden degree of our own expertise when we can share it with anyone in the world with an internet connection. It was fun to expose science and our research to others while relaxing with friends.""
Windows

+ - Windows 7 Beats Meego Battery Life on Netbook->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Meego is a Linux distro designed for low-powered and portable devices and developed jointly between Nokia and Intel. As such, it was expected that it would provide great battery life. Asus will be bringing one of the first commercial Meego netbooks to market shortly. The X101H netbook will be available with Meego or Windows 7 Starter. Surprisingly, with the same hardware and battery, Windows 7 Starter is rated by Asus for an extra hour of battery life."
Link to Original Source
Windows

+ - Microsoft patent covers streaming OS plans

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Though the patent has only surfaced now, Microsoft has been working on this concept for quite some time. As far back as 2009 similar systems have been discussed on various Microsoft blogs. There was also the Midori OS project that had bloggers buzzing about its post-Windows potential and integration with Microsoft's cloud platform, Azure. Steve Ballmer himself has called Windows 8 Microsoft's riskiest bet yet — could this streaming tech make make an appearance in the upcoming OS?"
Android

+ - App Inventor Reborn at MIT->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "MIT announced the launch of the new Center for Mobile Learning, with a first activity being to take over and refine App Inventor for Android. The center will be led by App Inventor mastermind Hal Abelson, Mitch Resnick of Lego Mindstorms and Scratch fame, and Eric Klopfer, the director of teacher education at MIT and an expert in games and simulation. Here'(TM)s an excerpt from the announcement:

"Dr. Maggie Johnson, Google’s Director of Education and University Relations, sees the Media Lab initiative as the ideal next step for App Inventor. “Google incubated App Inventor to the point where it gained critical mass. MIT’s involvement will both amplify the impact of App Inventor and enrich the research around it,” said Johnson. “It is a perfect example of how industry and academia can work together effectively."

This news boomerangs the negativity surrounding Google’s discontinuation announcement last week. To the many teachers whose curriculums have been energized by App inventor, and to the thousands of newly empowered app builders: Rejoice! The fun has just begun!"

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:They'll be back... (Score 2) 412

by shumacher (#36576078) Attached to: LulzSec Announces That It Is Done

You, my friend, have clearly never played that game.

BASIC Gorilla tactics 101

The tactics are to look at the wind-speed meter, consider elevation, and then try an angle and velocity that will strike the opponent with your explodo-banana. Refine your velocity and angle per the rules of "playing the odds" guess too much one way, and too little the other, then extrapolate the correct angle and velocity by interpolation.

A quick search turns up this website that has a flash implementation of the game (covered with a skippable ad) that you may use to refine your "BASIC Gorilla" skills.

No, that's QBASIC Gorilla tactics 101.

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